Back to Scott's Crystal Radio Home Page
Several new pairs just listed on these pages.
Throw away that little crystal
earplug and try a pair of real vintage headphones and you will be
amazed at the quality of sound a simple crystal set can produce.
(I have recently appreciated the sensitivity of a good crystal
earplug, but the sound is poor in quality. Mouser has the best.)
I collect headphones and occasionally have to buy a box of several headphones to get one or two for my collection. The rest are then tested and repaired if necessary. The housings are cleaned and polished lightly if needed. Any cord repairs are neatly bound with matching color thread, but I try to keep the original cord if it is electrically intact. Remember these headphones are up to 90 years old, may have minor cosmetic imperfections unless noted. Will give detailed description or digital photo on request. I try them on a crystal radio which is a good test of their sensitivity. Battery sets have a stronger output and don't need quite as much sensitivity from the headphones.
I have tested and have tried to rate each pair of phones for their sensitivity and suitability to use on crystal radio or battery sets. Most date back to the 1920's or 1930's. Some are pricey but consider that a pair of good headphones cost 2 or 3 day's wages back in the early 1920's, (a week's wages in the case of Baldwins or Western Electrics) they are relatively inexpensive now.
New Postal Rates keep going up all the time.
For US Postal Service Priority Mail shipping within US figure 2 pounds weight for 1 headset using the link below to the postal service, or email me for the actual cost of postage for larger shipments (within US). Click USPS icon below for US Postal rates from my zipcode 23320.
NOTE: Insurance is highly recommended as I cannot reimburse for loss or damage in the mail unless the postal insurance pays for it. Insurance is not available to some overseas locations, so shipping would be at your own risk. If it is available I will offer rates with and without insurance. If no insurance is chosen, and the package is lost, I will send you a photo of the postal receipt for proof of mailing but can NOT offer reimbursement if you do not elect to get the insurance coverage. There is a standard $50 insurance now automatically included on USPS Priority Air Mail packages.
Sign up for Paypal for quick easy
payment: Click the icon to
I recommend you add insurance for amount of purchase, if more than the $50 coverage that comes with Priority Mail, not responsible for damage or disappearance in mail, so insurance is recommended.
Email to email@example.com E-mail me here to order.
Sorry, no repair service available.
Cords: A note about cords: The old
cloth cords on these headphones are up to 85 years old and some
are a bit fragile or stiff. I test them all for electrical
continuity before sending them and make any necessary electrical
repairs so they will arrive to you in working condition, but
I can't really guarantee how long they will last since some may be
on their last strand of conductor wire inside, so I have to offer
no warranty on the cords either for longevity or appearance other
than to say they are tested and working when I send them.
Unfortunately, I do not know of a good source for cloth covered
cords. Phoneco does stock them but charges about $40 for each one,
but you can check with them if you like.
HOLDS: Items may be held up to 2 weeks, will then
be released for sale.
Featured Headphones: These are special pairs that I
will put at the top of the page here that are either in
exceptional condition, or a rare or unusual pair.
Automatic Electric Headphones with original box
Working pair of Automatic Electric headphones with the original box. Headphones are working but only fair to good condition with a taped up spot on the cord. $45
Holtzer Cabot Headphones with original box
Holtzer Cabot 2000 ohm headphones with original box circa 1923 in good working condition. A little fray on the distal ends of the cord. $66
The ACME headphones with original box
Good working pair of The ACME headphones with the original box, by Acme specialty company. $34
Trimm Commercial 300 ohm impedance stereo headphones
New unused pair of vintage Trimm Commercial 300 ohm impedance stereo headphones new in the original box. $35
Western Electric 509 Headphones 2200 Ohms
Great working pair of 2200 ohm Western Electric 509 headphones with replacement cord, some fray on the headband edges, excellent sensitivity and great for crystal radio use. $45SOLD
Western Electric CW-49003 Headphones
Military version of the Western Electrics with 2200 ohms DC resistance, 22,700 ohms AC impedance marked on the housings. Cloth cord, leatherette headband but some of the black leatherette has worn off. Work great and excellent sensitivity. $65
Trimm Type K 2200 Ohm Headphones
Very nice looking and great working pair of Trimm Type K 2200 ohm headphones. Made to same military specifications as the Western Electric 509 headphones. The headbands on these Type K headphones is quite generous in size, possibly to accommodate wearing over a hat, so you may need to add a bit of padding under the top of the headband is you have a smaller hat size. Great sensitivity for crystal radio use. $49
Trimm Type K Headphones 2200 ohms
Good working pair of Trimm Type K headphones with 2200 ohms DC resistance great for crystal radio use. These are made to the same military specifications as the Western Electric 509-W headphones. $39SOLD
Batch of 6 early earphone units
Six single earphone units all functional with good coils as below:
Western Electric 400 single unit, working condition
Western Electric 179W single unit, good coils, cap has broken rim and repaired break
Western Electric 504W single unit good working condition with cord and strap
Western Electric 528 single unit working condition
Murdock single unit working condition
Couch Seeley single unit with hanger ring, working condition
Price is $19SOLD for the whole batch of 6 above units
R&Z 2000 ohm Headphones
A very uncommon pair of R&Z 2000 ohm headphones in good working condition, replacement vintage cloth cord. $32HOLD
Military Signal Corps R-2-A Headphones 2200 Ohms
Military Signal Corps R-2-A headphones with 2200 ohms DC resistance in very good working condition. They have the flat ear caps that can be used inside of a flying helmet. They have a 1/4 inch plug. The sensitivity is excellent can would be great for use with crystal radio. $41
JS Timmons 2000 Ohm Headphones
Another uncommon pair of headphones, JS Timmons 2000 ohm headphones is good working condition. $49
No name 2000 ohm headphones
Working pair of 1920's headphones sensitivity adequate for crystal radio reception. The cloth is split on one of the canvas headband covers. $19
Automatic Electric 1500 Ohm Headphones
Working pair of Automatic Electric 1500 ohm headphones, somewhat time work but electrically intact and adequate for local stations on crystal radio. $16
Kainer 2000 ohm headphones
Very uncommon pair of Kainer 2000 ohm headphones in great working condition, with very good sensitivity for crystal radio use. They have new diaphragms and the sound is excellent. $56
Working pair of Manhattan Electric Supply Company 2000 ohm headphones. Working and adequate for crystal radio reception for local stations. Time worn but working. $16SOLD
Western Electric Style military HUBMIL TS-5
This is a nice military single 1000 ohm headphone in good working condition. Suitable for use with crystal radio and the unit looks like a Western Electric type element. $23HOLD
Baldwin headphones were the first to use the balanced armature type of sound reproducer similar to that used in the later navy soundpowered headphones, making their sensitivity excellent. The armature was coupled to a transparent mica diaphragm and encircled by a large permanent magnet. They were among the best, and most expensive headphones available in the early 1920's, and the average worker would have to pay 1-2 weeks wages to buy a pair.
A note about Baldwin Headphones
Headphones by Nathaniel Baldwin were touted as being superior to other headphones of the 1920's due to their pivoting armature driving a pin attached to a mica diaphragm. After testing dozens of pairs of these headphones, I conclude that the main difference is increased sensitivity to very weak signals, and the volume on stronger signals is about the same as a good pair of Western Electric 509-Ws or Brandes headphones. They have an excursion limiting pin to stabilize the position of the armature in the magnet gap that limits the excursion of the armature and thereby limiting the volume at higher levels. So, don't buy a pair of Baldwins expecting them to be louder than a good pair of magnetic diaphragm type of headphones for general listening, but you should find that they pick up the very weak stations better than others. Also, since there are moving parts involved, there is sometimes some variability in volume and one side may be marginally louder than the other side.
This is the last pair of Baldwin headphones I have and these are in superb cosmetic condition, tested, with excellent sensitivity. Rare to find Baldwins with the original cloth covered cord and headband in such nice condition. $79SOLD LM
Coherer Products 1000 ohm single earphone
Rare Coherer Products 1000 ohm single earphone in working condition. This is the only Coherer headphone I have ever seen so must be pretty uncommon. $41
Crosley 2000 ohm headphones #2
Western Electric 509-W and similar model headphones were among
the highest quality headphones and the first choice for
professional radiomen back in the 1920's. They were based on the
same design made by Western Electric for use in WW-I which include
the model P-II used with the Signal Corps DeForest BC-14A crystal
radio, and the model 194-W used in the WW-I leather pilot flying
helmets. They were quite expensive and costed about a week's wages
for the average worker at the time. The model 509-W were built to
the same military specifications as those models. The ones
available below have been cleaned up and are in good working
condition with excellent sensitivity for using with crystal
radios. Some of the cords have had to be replaced. Even though
these are about 100 years old they are working great and should
give many more years of service.
Western Electric 509-W Headphones #6
Great working pair of 2200 ohm Western Electric 509-W headphones with replacement cord great for crystal radio use. $44SOLD
Western Electric 509-W headphones #7
Not the prettiest pair of Western Electrics but they work fine and have new replacement ear caps and diaphragms. Some fray on the cord and headband but functionally as good as higher priced sets. $39
Western Electric 509-W Headphones #8
Great working pair of 2200 ohm Western Electric 509-W headphones with replacement cord great for crystal radio use. $42
Western electric 509-W Headphones #9
Great working pair of 2200 ohm Western Electric 509-W headphones with replacement cord great for crystal radio use. $42SOLD
Western Electric 509-W Headphones #10
Great working pair of 2200 ohm Western Electric 509-W headphones with replacement cord great for crystal radio use, these had the cord replaced by someone else not the prettiest but they work great with great sensitivity for crystal radio use. $39
Brandes Superior 2000 Ohm Headphones #1
Nice pair of Brandes Superior Matched Tone 2000 ohm headphones circa 1922 is very good condition and very good sensitivity for use on crystal radios. A couple of small frayed spots on the headband you can see in the photo, otherwise great condition for being 98 years old. $39
Brandes Superior 2000 Ohm Headphones #3 circa 1922
Circa 1922 pair of Brandes Superior 2000 ohm headphones with replacement cord otherwise very good condition and very good sensitivity for crystal radio.$38
Brandes Superior 2000 Ohm Headphones #6
Good working pair of Brandes Superior 2000 ohm headphones in nice condition. $42SOLD
Brandes Superior 2000 Ohm Headphones #7
These Brandes headphones date to about 1922 but somewhere along the line some fashion minded individual replaced the headband canvas with this leopard print material. They have a new cord and the earphone units are in excellent condition with very good sensitivity for crystal radio listening. This is a great pair of headphones to use on crystal radio or one tube radio if you don't mind them not having the vintage appearance. $31
Brandes Superior 2000 Ohm Headphones #9
Brandes 2000 ohm headphones in very good cosmetic and working condition. A couple of very minor fray spots on the cord otherwise in very nice condition. $45HOLD
Early Brandes 2000 ohm headphones #12
Early circa 1920 Brandes Superior headphones with replacement cord in otherwise good working condition. $31
Brandes #13, circa 1922
Great working pair of 2000 ohm Brandes Superior headphones circa 1922, great for crystal radio listening. $43SOLD
Trimm Professional 4000 Ohm Headphones with 1/4 inch plug
Good working pair of Trimm Professional 4000 ohm headphones, cloth cord with 1/4 inch plug. $42
Trimm Professional 4000 Ohm Headphones
Good working pair of Trimm Professional 4000 ohm DC resistance headphones. Original cloth cord in good condition. Work well for crystal radio. $38
ACME Trimm headphones 2000 ohm
Pair of ACME Trimm 2000 ohm headphones, economy model but appear to be unused, and in working condition. $19
HOLDS: If you want a pair of
headphones or other item but need some time before purchasing, I
will place the item on HOLD for a period of up to 2 weeks. After
that the hold will be released and item sold to any buyer who
wants it. Sorry I can't place items on hold longer. NO exceptions
to this rule. Items that say hold after the price are on
Keystone 2200 Ohm Headphones
This is a fairly rare pair of Keystone headphones by American Electric Company in good working condition. The cord is a bit short and repaired at the end, but they work great and would work well for crystal radio use. $49.
Royalfone King Of All headphones 2000 ohm headphones in good working condition. $33
Holleyfone 2000 Ohm headphones
Another uncommon set of headphones, Holleyfone from Holley MFG in Newark NJ, 2000 ohms DC resistance in very good cosmetic and working condition. Beautiful shiny chromed or polished nickel housings. $44SOLD LM
Crown Mechanics 2000 Ohm Headphones
This is a very uncommon pair of Crown Mechanics 2000 ohm headphones from Rochester that are in good working condition. $39
Automatic Electric 1500 Ohm Headphones
Automatic Electric headphones from the mid to late 1920's in quite nice cosmetic and working condition. Work fine for crystal radio use, tested and working well. Nice leatherette covered headband. $36
Blue Streak 2000 Ohm Headphones
This is one of a very few pairs of Blue Streak headphones that I have ever seen, so they must be pretty uncommon. These are in very good cosmetic and working condition. $34
Unbranded Single Earphone 1000 ohms
Simple single headphone, no name brand but probably by Cannon. They are 1000 ohms and work OK, can hear some locals, but not really sensitive enough for distant stations. $8
NRI Single Headphone 1000 ohms
Good working single 1000 ohm NRI headphone circa late 1920's. $14
Will be listing many more headphones over the next few
weeks, inquire is there is something specific you are looking
ACME Trimm 1000 ohm single earphone
Cheap but working set of ACME 1000 ohm single sided earphone, I can hear some local stations on crystal radio. $12
USVB 2000 Ohm Headphones
This is a fairly uncommon pair of USVB 2000 ohm headphones, in good working condition. Look a lot like Trimm headphones, possibly made on a contract. Fine for crystal radio reception. $35
Trimm Dependable 2000 Ohm Headphones
Good working 2000 ohm Trimm Dependable headphones with some fray of the outer cover of the cord at the Y connection but otherwise good working condition and suitable for crystal radio reception. $28
Trimm 500 Ohm Headphones
Uncommon 500 ohm pair of Trimm Headphones in working condition, replacement headband, and a bound up spot on the cord. $19
Low Impedance Cheapie Headphones
Working pair of fairly modern low impedance headphones, tinned ends on the wire. $11HOLD
RMCA 2000 ohm headphones
Rather beat up but functional pair of RMCA (Radio Marine Corporation of America) headphones, probably same as Trimm Featherweight. Will work for crystal radio. $21
New Section Display or Mod Headphones
Nonworking Headphones for Display, Stage Props, or for rebuilding or Steampunk Mods Nothing over $20 sorting through some next few days.
Metro 1000 ohm headphones, good units, bad cord
Another set with good units but a bad cord that would work with a new cord. Metro headphones to go along with a Metro crystal set from the early 1920's. $18
NOS Sylvania 1N450 Glass Body Point Contact Germanium Crystal
New Old stock of Sylvania crystal diodes, probably 1950's vintage, nice long leads, tested and work great for crystal radio detectors. $2 each or $17 for a dozen.
Package of 7 Germanium Point Contact Crystal Radio Detector
Assortment of seven diodes. One vintage Sylvania 1N450 diode, two Russian D9B detector diodes, two US made NOS military diodes, and two modern 1N34A diodes.
All work great for crystal radio detectors. $4
Package of 12 Diodes
A dozen new old stock military germanium point contact detector diodes, (sorry the photo only shows 10 but offer is for 12) behave like 1N34A but they are unmarked so I don't know the exact specs, but tested and work equivalent to any 1N34A diode I have. $4.50
Bulk purchase option buy 100 diodes for $15.
See 1920's Battery set parts page for
vintage radio parts occasionally list Transformers, tubes, and
Click here to see the Headphone Museum Gallery
NO REPLACEMENT DOUBLE CORDS AVAILABLE They have these at Phoneco, email to firstname.lastname@example.org
These are not original W.E. parts but will fit W.E. 509W and similar headphones with the same size threads. $0.39 each
1 pair Murdock 55, 1000 ohm earpiece with good coils, no cap or diaphragm $13 ball and socket type circa 1915
Sorry, no Baldwin parts. Have some Brandes units earpieces available with good coils without the diaphragms or earcaps, no headbands or cords $5.
Sorry, no repair service available, plenty of advice given free
though. Many other parts available, inquire.
E-mail me here to order.
Back to Scott's Crystal Radio Home Page