Portable Cassette Player Buying Guide

Some may feel that cassettes and portable cassette players are a thing of the past, but the truth is, many people still use them and prefer the sound quality of them. Knowing which one to buy can be difficult, but a buying guide will help.

Types of Portable Cassette Players

The first type of portable cassette player is one that is designed to play only cassette tapes. It does not play any other type of music other than what is on the cassette tape that is put into the machine. Some of the portable cassette players like this also have the ability to record outside voices or sounds. So you can use it if you would like to record notes, a book, or anything else that may come to mind.

The second type of portable cassette player is often called a cassette boom box. Not only can you play cassette tapes, but you can listen to the radio as well. They often come with AM/FM radio, giving you the option to listen to the radio or play a cassette tape. A cassette boom box does not typically come with the option to record outside voices or noises, but they often come with the ability to record songs and such from the radio. When you have a blank cassette tape in the player, you can press record and record anything from the radio you would like.

The last is a Walkman type of cassette player. This type of player allows you to listen to music from the cassette tapes you put in them. They are extremely portable often having a clip that can go on your pants or belt so you can bring it with you without having to carry it. Many of the Walkman cassette players also have AM/FM radio allowing you to listen to the radio if you choose to.

Pay Attention to

The expected life of the batteries and the type of batteries that can be used. Portable devices have a tendency to drain batteries quite quickly, so it is important to think ahead about the type of batteries you will use in your device. Buying a couple sets of rechargeable batteries may be ideal. This way you can have one set in the device and the second set on the charger. This will ensure that you have batteries ready when the first set is drained. Some portable cassette players come with a power adapter giving you the ability to plug it in and save on the batteries while you are in one location.

The size of the player. You will want to determine what you will be using the player for and how large or small you would like it to be. You can get them smaller, so they will fit in your hand or larger, like the boom box cassette player where you will carry it by the handle.

Whether you would like to have the option to listen to the radio as well as cassette tapes. Not all of the portable cassette players have the option of a radio, so this is something to look at before purchasing.

Whether or not you will need to protect your player from water. If you are planning on using your portable cassette player outside regardless of whether or not it is raining, then you will want to look for one that is water or splash resistant. Now this does not mean that you can drop it in the lake and after you fish it out it will still work fine, but if it gets wet in the rain, it will continue to work.

Whether you would like the ability to record your own voice. This comes in handy if you would like to take notes on something or even if you would like to read a book and record it for your child. Not all of the portable cassette players have this option, so it is something to watch for.

Whether the player gives you the ability to go hands free. This will not apply to everyone, but depending on when you would like to use the player, you may want to be able to keep your hands free while still using the player. Some of the smaller portable cassette players have a clip so you can attach it to your clothing rather than having to hold onto it.

Top Brands and Product Lines

Panasonic RQ2102

This portable cassette player is best known for its clear voice recording with the built in microphone and its easy to use pause control.

Coby CX49

This portable cassette player is best known for its ability to auto stop when the tape is finished to conserve on batteries, as well as having a power adapter to use when near an outlet.

Sony TCM-210DV

This handheld portable cassette player is best known for its small design and its clear voice function that helps to give clarity in voice recordings.