Philco Model TP-20 Bakelite Table Radio (1940)
This and a number of similar models
ostensibly continued the legacy of the
Simplex Corporation of Sandusky,
Ohio, several years after Philco had
bought a controlling interest in the
company in 1937. Beyond this date,
Philco continued to increase its holding
in the company until, by 1948, the old
Simplex had disappeared completely
and that company had become just
another branch of Philco. Starting in
1939, within the transition period,
many stylish table models were offered
from the Simplex stable, first under the
Transitone tradename but within a
year, under Philco Transitone.

A brief history of Philco, Simplex and
the Sandusky manufacturing plant can
be found at

The TP-20 was first offered for sale in
June 1939, at the start of the 1940
model season. As such it was one of
the last models to use the "Transitone"
brand name without showing Philco
anywhere on the cabinet.  According to only 4000 of these
were made, with an initial selling price
of $15.95.

The chassis is a 5-tube ac/dc super-
het covering the standard broadcast
and old police bands. The tubes used
are 7A8 (mixer/LO), 7B7 (IF), 7C6 (2nd
det/AVC/1st AF), 35A5 (AF output)
and 35Z3 (rectifier). These are all
Loktal types. The schematic can be
found on
Riders page 12.2.
Take it From Room to Room ...just plug in anywhere and play!
The Philco TP-20 is an elusive but
very striking radio with sleek, machine
aged-styling. To me, in addition to
leaving various mechanistic impress-
ions, it is suggestive of a fiery comet
streaking through the heavens, leaving
a long blazing tail.
"Brown plastic cabinet with amber
grille. Built-in Loop Aerial, no
outside wires of any kind. Just plug
in anywhere and play. Gets
Standard American Broadcasts,
State and City Police. AC-DC
Superheterodyne, 5 Loktal tubes,
working... no ballast tube.
Improved Speaker. Automatic
Volume Control"
the amazing new Loktal tubes, invented
by Philco engineers. Full performance in
half the size with greatly reduced heat.
No hot wires, full Underwriter's
Approval, safe from fire and shock. And
with new refinements in speaker design,
you get rich deep tone at surprising
volume, finer than ever before in a small
low-priced compact. In every way,
Transitones are
quality radios, Philco
engineered and built to give reliable
service and satisfaction. Not only sold
but GUARANTEED by Philco!"
"Take it From Room to Room
...just plug in anywhere and play!
Built in Loop Aerial Needs no aerial or ground

A number of the new Transitone Compact
models have a
Built-in Loop Aerial. There
are no dangling wires of any kind, no fuss
or bother with aerial or ground
attachments. Carry the radio from room
to room, wherever you wish to use it at
any time... plug in to a convenient outlet
and play! And, because there are no
outside wires to pick up noises, you get
purer, clearer, finer tone. The
Electric radio!"
extracts quoted from a 1940 Philco
Transitone brochure
Philco TP-20 Bakelite Table Radio (1940)
Philco TP-20 Bakelite Table Radio (1940)
Philco TP-20 Bakelite Table Radio (1940)
Philco TP-20 Bakelite Table Radio Rear View (1940)