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These hugely heavy and incredibly sensitive sets were, rumour has it, produced for Lend-Lease agreements with England for service in World War II. They are quite common in the UK but scarce in the US. There appear to be two 'flavours' of AR88 - the 'D' version has a frequency coverage as per above whilst the 'LF' version goes down all the way to 75kHz.

The receiver consists of two RF stages, a mixer, local oscillator, three IF stages, a detector, noise limiter, BFO, AF amplifier, output stage and power supply system. The IF amplifiers incorporate variable selectivity and a crystal filter. The sets are normally housed in steel cases but can be rack mounted.

The receivers are designed for coupling to a 200 ohm transmission line, except on low frequency general broadcast bands. For these and general use a single wire 25 to 50 ft. long can be used.

The Reception set AR88D was originally manufactured as the Reception set AR88. It still bears this name on the front panel. The change in designation occurred between the serial numbers 003000 and 010000 and coincides with a change in the design of the output transformer to provide a 600 ohm balanced line output and a 20,000 ohm headphone output. The original AR88 featured a 20 ohm headphone output.

General characteristics

HAM bands
160m  80m  60m  40m  30m (WARC)  20m  17m (WARC)  15m  12m (WARC)  11m (CB)  10m 
Frequency stability
?
Tuning steps
Continuous
Memories
None

Receiver

RX-range
0.535-32 MHz in six bands
Modulations
AM   CW  
Sensitivity
For 20dB S/N: 8 µV at 1 MHz, 4.5 µV at 4.3 MHz, 7 µV at 16 MHz, 7 µV at 28 MHz
Selectivity
5 Settings: -3dB bandwidths 15 kHz, 9 kHz, 3.4 kHz, 1.6 kHz, 400 Hz
Filters
?
Receiver system
Single conversion, 14 valves
IF-frequencies
455 kHz
Image rejection
120 dB at 1 MHz / 60 dB at 16 MHz / 46 dB at 28 MHz
Audio output
2.5 W (2.5 ohm external speaker or 600 ohm headphone)

Connections

Antenna
Clamps / screws
Impedance
200Ω
Other
-

Electrical

Power requirements
100-260 V AC mains or 6 V DC vibrator pack
Current drain RX
100 VA
TX
-

Physical

Dimensions (w×h×d)
488 × 280 × 488 mm (19.21 × 11.02 × 19.21 in)
Weight
45.00 kg (99.3 lbs)
Form factor
Base Station
Manufactured
Between 1940 and 1945 in USA

Other features

Usage
Amateur / Ham radio operators
Features + options
Optional S-meter
Accessories
-
RigReference ID
3699
MPN
RCA-AR000088D

Manuals, diagrams and brochures

RCA Ar88 HF Reciever Service Manual PDF - 2.59 MB, submitted by B. van Assen
 
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Reviews & stories

Rating Title Submitted
G3RAQ in the early 1960's 8 months ago by Harry

New and second-hand prices

Estimating the value of a rig can be challenging. We collect prices paid by real hams over the years to help you estimate the value of a used RCA AR88D. Just bought or sold this model? Let us know what you traded it for and help other ham operators!

Based on historic data, today's second-hand price of the RCA AR88D is around:

  • USD 901.00 ~ USD 95.00
  • GBP 0.00

Price History Chart

These estimates are based on the following prices:

Year Historic price Condition Submitted by
2018 USD 100.00 Used / Good Tony
2017 USD 1000.00 Used / Good Tony
1963 GBP 45.00 New / Good Harry

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