Hammarlund SP-600 Desktop HF/VHF Receiver

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As many as 40 (!) different SP-600 versions have been manufactured. It started with the SP-600 JX-1 in 1951. Most versions have a frequency range as stated above, but there were some exceptions. For instance the SP-600 VLF only covers 10-540 kHz and the SP-600-JLX-2 (1951) covers 100-400 kHz and 1.35-29.7 MHz. The last SP-600 was the SP-600 JX-21A which was in production until 1972. This was also the only SP-600 with a SSB product detector.

From the outside, most versions look quite similar, but circuit modifications where made throughout its lifetime. Many models were custom ordered for military or naval duties. It is not believed that the SP-600 was used on board ships, only on shore stations.

For reference, here is a list of all the versions I could find: SP-600-JX-1, SP-600-JLX-2, SP-600-J-3, SP-600-J-4, SP-600-JX-6, SP-600-JX-7, SP-600-JX-8, SP-600-JL-9, SP-600-JX-10, SP-600-J-11, SP-600-JX-12, SP-600-J-13, SP-600-JX-14, SP-600-JLX-15, SP-600-JL-16, SP-600-JX-17, SP-600 JX-18, SP-600-J-19, SP-600-J-20, SP-600-JX-21, SP-600-J-22, SP-600-JLX-23, SP-60O-JL-24, SP-600-J-25, SP-600-JX-26, SP-600-JLX-27, SP-600-JX-28, SP-600-JX-29, SP-600-JX-30, SP-600-VLF-31, SP-600-JX-32, SP-600-JLX-33, SP-600-JL-34, SP-600-JX-35, SP-600-JX-36, SP-600-JL-24, SP-600-JX-37, SP-600-VLF-38, SP-600-JX-39 and SP-600-JX-21A.

The SP-600 requires an external loadspeaker.

Frequency range

0.54-54 MHz
HAM bands
Tuning steps

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AM   CW  
2.3 µV (S/N ratio 10:1)
Receiver system
Single conversion below 7.4 MHz, dual conversion above 7.4 MHz
1st: 3.955 MHz
2nd: 455 kHz
Image rejection
Audio output
2.5 W (external speaker required)




SO-239 + Clamps / screws


Power requirements
Mains (95-260 V AC)
Current drain RX


Dimensions (w×h×d)
480 × 270 × 420 mm (18.90 × 10.63 × 16.54 in)
29.50 kg (65.1 lbs)
Form factor
Base Station
Between 1951 and 1972 in USA

Other features

Amateur / Ham radio operators
Features + options

Manuals, diagrams and brochures

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Great receiver

Hammarlund SP-600, Desktop HF/VHF Receiver

It's a great receiver that compares with the best of today at least as far as sensitivity and selectivity are concerned and it's miles ahead of modern rigs in many ways. Dial read out of course is not on par with today's digital receivers but it is quiet, sensitive and selective and dial read out is very good for a 60 year old receiver. When I bought it half the RF coils had been blasted out, probably transmitted into but I had it restored about 7 or 8 years ago and since then it has been a solid reliable well performing rig, in fact I'm listening to it now. It's a great DX machine, SW and BCB, it easily picks up the European BCB splits and is selective enough with it's 6 selectivity positions to hear them. The audio is excellent, very clear. I compare it to my restored R-390A and go back and forth between them, it's that good to operate. You can also listen to SSB with it by turning on the BFO and backing off on the RF gain. Once it warms up (10 minutes) it's very stable, usually if you read negative reports of this radio it's because it probably hasn't been restored, they need to have the paper caps replaced which is not a fun job but once it's done you'll never have to do it again. It weighs a ton but heats up the shack in the winter and overall is a very pleasurable receiver to own and use, a good restored SP-600 with outlive you.

Build quality
User friendlyness
Value for money
Good condition in 2006
USD 300.00


Estimating the value of a rig can be challenging. The graph below shows historical prices paid by hams over the years. May it guide you to good fortune...

Price Condition Year User
USD 275.00 Good / Used 1998 k6vib
USD 300.00 Good / Used 2006 bobyoung53
USD 900.00 Okay / Used 2009 KG4
USD Good / Used 2014 KF0AM
USD Good / Used 2014 KF0AM
USD Good / Used 2014 KF0AM
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