This is not a true evaluation, plus the product was not intended to produce light, so my standard review format will not be used here.
This web page was opened on 03-31-08, and was last updated on 01-15-10
(Somebody emailed me stating that I forgot to mention that this unit operated from 10 heavy D cells).

Although this is not an LED product, I've published reviews & informational web pages for other non-LED, non-laser, and non-light products on this website. So adding a section to this website about vintage ghetto blasters was pretty much inevitable. However I did perform a spectrographic analysis of its power-on LED, so this is at least slightly germane to the general theme of this website.

These web pages are about machines I actually *HAVE* at this very moment (early-April 2008), not machines I once had but no longer do (those which were broken, sold, or lost over the years; like my beloved Sharp GF-4545 - R.I.P. (Rest In Pieces), a large Lasonic, a Marantz Gold Series, a Sony or two, a GE or two, and several other JVC models).

The JVC RC-M70JW has always been my all-time favourite stereo radio cassette recorder ("ghetto blaster" or "boombox" as some people call them). I first purchased one in the summer of 1982 at Alaska Music in Juneau AK. USA for the then-very high cost of $455.00.
I had a summer job as a mail clerk which paid $6.62 per hour; that's where I got the money to purchase this monstrosity.

I remember playing cassettes from bands such as AC/DC, Kraftwerk, Niña Hagen, Exciter, The Cars, Van Halen, Anthrax, Raven, Slayer, Metallica, Pink Floyd, Dio, The Police, and Foreigner (to name just a few) in it. I also interfaced it with my Commodore 64 computer when the speaker in my Commodore 1702 monitor malfunctioned, and operated a small laser show by connecting the scanners to its speaker outputs.

Not only was it physically the largest machine available at the time (~21" wide, ~5" deep, ~11.5" high), it was the most powerful: pumping out 15 watts per channel (stereo; two channels) into a pair of 6.5" woofers and 2.0" horn tweeters. I remember taking it to Eagle Beach in Juneau in the summer of 1982 or 1983 in a "sound off" competition of an acquaintence's (Albert Dick's) JVC RC-550JW, a monsterous monaural machine with a 10" woofer, a 4" midrange, and a 1" tweeter (yes, I have one of these too)...needless to say, my RC-M70JW won quite handily.

The JVC RC-M70JW boasted a whole bunch of features rivalling expensive home stereos at the time...let's do a little recap from memory here: This unit has the "JW" suffix; this indicates the unit can be used at 110 volts or 220 volts AC; units without the "JW" suffix can only be used on 110 volts AC power.
Australian units had the "WH" suffix; which I honestly don't know what means.
And before I forget..."JVC" stands for Japan Victor Corporation; generally regarded as makers of decent audio & video equipment.

This machine operated from ten (10) D cells -- that alone made it rather heavy.
You really had to be in decent shape to pack this puppy around on the city streets, the beach, or the park, or wherever you carried it.

The unit shown here is a JVC RC-M71JW; the only thing that makes it different from the RC-M70JW is the case color:
light champagne (for the RC-M71) instead of matte silver (for the RC-M70).

The cassette transport in this unit has a broken belt (not an unusual fault for such an old machine); it otherwise appears to be fully functional. I purchased it on Ebay in 2003 after my original became lost in the late-1980s to the early-1990s.

I also own the following JVC (and one Aiwa, one Panasonic, and one Sears) ghetto blasters; they may or may not be added to this website in the future (linked ones have already been added): The RC-550 from 1982 is a large monaural machine boasting a 3-way speaker system with a 10" woofer.
The RC-656 from ~1983 is a rather plain, midsized ghetto blaster ("plain", as boomboxes from this time period go)
The RC-838 is a large machine from 1978; it boasts the "biphonic system" which has binaural ("stereo wide") sound.
The RC-M70 was the largest and most powerful machine sold in 1982.
The RC-M80 is a large machine from 1982; it's selling points are a soft-touch cassette transport and a digital tuner.
The Aiwa CS600 has a very nice sound; it has a bass boost circuit like many of the JVC units above.
The Sears SR-2100 is a mid-sized machine with rather nice sound and a bass boost circuit.

How this machine would often be carried.
This photograph was taken on the morning of 03-30-08.

The top of the machine.
Look at all of those buttons, slide switches, and slide pots!!!

The machine's left side, showing the extensive suite of I/O receptacles.

Spectrographic analysis
Spectrographic analysis of the orange-red "power on" LED in this machine.
This LED was considerably brighter than others I saw in the early-1980s.

Here's a closing shot of this ghetto blaster. :-)

UPDATE: 05-14-08
I'll be moving again sometime in June 2008, and the new place will have no storage.
Rather than letting this wonderful pre-loved machine end up in the dustbin (garbage can), I made a post on the Stereo2Go fora, offering it free for pickup along with most other ghetto blasters on this website. Therefore, that dreadful "" icon will now appear next to its listings on this website.

UPDATE: 05-05-09
Sound file (.MP3 format) of a recording of a race made on the RC-M70 by M@ from Australia in 1983.
This file is 6.511MB (6,836,139 bytes) in size; dial-up users please be aware.
It will take no less than thirty three minutes to load at 48.0Kbps.

An excellent place to go find out & learn about vintage ghetto blasters is the Boombox Museum.

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