Emerson Model AU-190

The 1937 Emerson Model AU-190 is one of their most sought after models.  They featured an elegant, tombstone-style cabinet made from Catalin plastic in any of five colors.  The original advertisements only mentioned white ("natural onyx") and green ("Brazilian onyx") as available colors.  Apparently, the remaining colors (red, blue, and brown) were introduced later, which may explain their relative rarity.  The white radios are now found in the familiar shade of yellow, of course.

The radios featured a conventional 5-tube 2-band super heterodyne circuit, but it was a narrow, deep chassis that was very difficult to work on, and they used resistance line cords which were troublesome then and now.  Cabinet shrinkage, normal with Catalin, caused many of the cabinets to crack, so many were discarded.  Interference between the sides of the cabinet and the chassis was the primary problem with this design.


Emerson AU-190 Advertisement-Jan. 1938