Sony CFD-G500 Radio/Cassette/CD Boombox

7 ratings (7 Epinions reviews)
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Great Bang for the Buck

Oct 21, 2004 (Updated Feb 13, 2007)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Sound:
  • Ease of Use:
  • Durability:
  • Battery Life:
  • Portability:

Pros:Nice power, compact package, reasonable price, nice looks

Cons:everything is self-contained; speakers do not detach.

The Bottom Line: Excellent bang for the buck - better than what I had. I'm glad I bought it


When my existing boom box, a Sony CFD-ZW 755 started to skip during CD playback, I figured it was time for a replacement.

Most of the time I use a boombox in my studio to play background CDs for my students during music lessons. The space I have to work with is a shelf 11” high, so that is one parameter. I also use the boom box to provide background music during gigs with myself and a background, where I don’t need to project more than half a block or so. I have a Fender monitor I use when more volume is needed.

So, I set out to find a cost effective boombox, powerful enough for my needs but also able to fit on the shelf. I was looking for something clearly better than the incumbent model, which is still available.

I checked online for alternatives in the right size and price range. This model immediately showed up, although it was a little tough to get objective data on the power requirements. Therefore, I went to my local Circuit City store to check the units out.

The displays were not great – there was a lot of background noise throughout the store and the demo of my existing product wasn’t working because of loose wires. I hooked it up and compared the two. This unit had more volume and better fidelity at higher volume in the store, so I bought it at $99.95 plus tax. Once home, I unpacked it and put it through it’s paces. Like the incumbent, it has a bass boost and some pre-set alternatives for the sound mix. It has a single cassette recorded that can be synchronized with a CD.

This unit also has:

- CDRW capability (but the music has to be in CD-format)
- 20-track CD cut pre-programming; shuffle and repeat as well
- Digital AF/FM tuning with 30 potential pre-sets: 10 AM, 20 PM
- A large power drive woofer that really boosts the bass, with a cool red illuminated indicator.
- 20 W RMS power
- Remote Control
- A line in function
- Headphone jack
- A really intriguing design

Compared to the earlier boombox, it weighs about half (7lbs, 4oz vs 14lbs, 12oz) and is more compact (15 ¼”W x 6 ½”H x 10W” vs 24 ¾ x 10 ½ x 10). It’s much more powerful as well. The Sony site didn’t provide power comparisons. However, in my studio, 5 on the volume control (on a scale from 1 – 10) on the new boombox is as loud as 10 was on the old one. The new one is clearly more powerful – all the more interesting since they have the same number and size of speakers (2 at 4 inches each). Oddly enough (g), the recommended mix preset for jazz gives me the sound I like best.

The new one has a top load CD, like the old one, but with the extra room caused by the reduced height, it is easier to get a CD in and out for play when the boom box is on the shelf.

While I prefer using AC power, I've used battery power (8 size D) for about 5 hours so far, with no sign of them wearing out.

I’ve used most of the functions except for line in and they all work as specified. My students like the design, too. The only real drawback to the new one as compared to the old one is that the speakers are self-contained. On the old one, the speakers could detach and move.

I can recommend this boom box as having nice power and sound for the money and a nice look besides.

Thanks for reading. God bless!

Please check out my other Electronics reviews:
US Cellular Cell Phone Service
Sandisk Sensa M-240 1GB MP3 Player
Audio Technica wireless mike
AKG C1000s Twin Pack Microphones
Audix D4 mike
AMT Roam 1 wireless mike
Shure SM57






Recommend this product? Yes


Amount Paid (US$): 99.95


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