TRANSISTOR MUSEUM™     

Historic Transistor Photo Gallery   

 

Transistor Size (3/16” OD X 1/2" H”)

Short Leaded Case Style for Socket Mounting

 

1960s RCA Cardboard Packaging

 with Styrofoam Insert 

 

RCA 2N109

 

TYPE

Germanium PNP Alloy Junction

Audio Frequency Amplifier

 

USAGE

Hobbyist/Experimenter

 Early Commercial Audio and Radio

 

DATE INTRODUCED

1955

 

CASE STYLES

Black Metal (Early)

Silver Metal (Later)

 

AVAILABILITY

Common (High Volume Production)

 

 

 

HISTORIC NOTES

RCA introduced the 2N109 in 1955.  This device became a real “workhorse” for the next decade, finding wide acceptance across the electronics industry as an affordable and reliable germanium audio transistor.  Many of the earliest transistor radios (from RCA, Emerson, Crosley, Westinghouse, and others) used the 2N109 in the audio output circuitry.  Most notable might be the Crosley “Radio Disguised as a Book” 1956 series of hybrid radios which used three vacuum tubes and two 2N109s for audio.  Also of note was the Fisher TR1 Transistor Preamp, introduced in 1956 and claimed to be “the first all-transistor high fidelity product”. This historic product contained three 2N109s.  In conjunction to these commercial uses for the 2N109, RCA promoted the 2N109 as a general purpose, inexpensive hobbyist device.  In 1956, the 2N109 cost a little over $2 and the price had dropped to approximately $1 by the early 60s.   The 2N109 was manufactured only in the short-leaded version (as in the photo above) and was designed to be used in a plug-in socket.  The 2N217 is the long-leaded version of the 2N109.   

 

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