Participating in Japanese Radio Auctions

Gary DeBock

Hello All,
For those who are interested in purchasing Japanese portable radios (classic or otherwise), there is a little-known resource which might help you track down the model of your dreams. Many excellent portables are bought and sold every year in Japan, but never show up in the eBay system.
Just for example, the Sony ICF-S5W is a rare classic portable in extreme demand in North America, drawing multiple bidders and hundreds of dollars when in shows up in good condition on eBay. But the Japanese-market model (the ICF-S5) is electrically identical, and extremely common in Japan. Currently no fewer than 14 of these ICF-S5 models are up for auction in Japan, as detailed in the listing posted at  Prices are extremely cheap, compared to what ICF-S5W models go for on eBay. The models even include a bonus map of Japan on the back panel, and crystal-provided coverage of the Japanese NSB shortwave frequencies.
Previously foreign bidders were excluded from these Japanese auctions, but Yahoo Japan has introduced a "Buyee" service to help foreigners participate. In addition to the cost of the radio, you will need to pay the shipping cost and a small fee to the "Buyee" service. Even with all these charges the total cost of purchasing a classic Japanese radio like the ICF-S5 can be hundreds of dollars less than an equivalent model on eBay. Full details and FAQ's are listed in the "" home page. Good luck!
73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)

Guy Atkins

Hi Gary,

Thanks for the interesting information on the "Buyee" service now offered by Yahoo Japan.

IRCA members may also be interested in the site, which stands for "JApan AUction CEnter". It is a similar service to Buyee for Yahoo Japan, but lets you participate in "shopping" sites such as Rakuten, Yahoo Japan Shopping,, etc., as well as the auction site Yahoo Japan.


Guy Atkins
Puyallup, WA USA


Buyee will add a lot of fees and additional shipping charges to your order and the total was crazyee high

Hwvr, if you are looking for a rare or special item it wont matter

Guy Atkins

Oops... Sorry, I meant to type "Ultralight DXers" rather than IRCA members.

I agree with John about his comment on the high fees. The service is the same way. It's worth it though if they help you track down a radio that's just not available through USA sources.

Guy Atkins
Puyallup, WA


I really appreciate the original post making us aware of this service. I have a large collection of SONY radios never offered in the USA, and often have paid as much as 2/3 the cost of the radio to get it here from Australia or the Middle East and shipping costs from Japan seem quite expensive too. So I would not expect fees + shipping  to be cheap from a bidding service in Japan. Some ebay sellers in Japan do say on there Ebay Store to contact them about other Products sold in Japan, but I have not done that yet. In the EU, I believe there is a huge Tax collected on items sold, but larger sellers seem to be able to get around collecting  that when shipping to the USA, so prices with shipping seem like bargains. Some of my Radios came from CHUMS, a large dept. store in the UK, and there are others too. Roberts has quite a number of portables not sold here. A few are rebadged  Sangean radios, but many are unique. I have the Roberts Classic 954 which I like, and happens to be in view as I type.  Off the top of my head, I don't recall radios likely to qualify as ULR from Roberts, but I collect more in the 'lunch box' size range of entertainment portables. - FARMERIK