The WM-B52 is a stereo cassette player Walkman manufactured by the Sony Corporation. This was part of their Sports range, and consequently they decided to include a solar powered watch, to help the athletes keep time. This was a waterproof model for use in the swimming pool, which resulted in the destruction of many players. This was a very basic model with limited functions, and could be confused with a budget-end player, however at one time it sold for just less than fifty pounds.
Apart from the waterproofing by way of a tub case, there was very little advancement in this player. The electronics were simple and basic utilising the Sanyo LA4570 integrated circuit (IC). The headphones were surprisingly very high quality with a wide frequency response.
The yellow colour of the Sports range became very iconic, and many people will remember having this model. At one time, millionaire types used this for lounging around in their swimming pools listening to music.
Being Brit, living under the heel of imperialism :-) I can only imagine how it must feel to be lounging in a swimming pool listening to a 1980s pop mix tape and sipping a Martini. This is the life for the lucky few such as Sir Richard Branson, and Sir Cliff Richard.
Interestingly, the later model WM-AF58 had a built-in radio and was identical in every other way. It is still a very nice piece of vintage history worth having and ideal for the Walkman collector, or anyone who wants something unique.
Sony Sports Range
There is an additional push button to select between normal and chrome tapes. This was un-necessary since chrome tapes have a tab on the edge to differentiate; it would have been far better to fit a micro switch within the cassette compartment to detect the cassette type.
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Sony WM-B52 Inside
Sony WM-B52 Tub Case
Sony WM-B52 Tape Transport
Sony WM-B52 Mechanism
Sony WM-B52 Clock Module
Sony WM-B52 PCB
Sony WM-B52 Power
Sony MDR-W15 Dynamic Headphones