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 Post subject: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sat 23, 2015 1:09 am 
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Disclaimer: Keep your BOSE hate to yourself, someone might appreciate this.

I picked this up today from goodwill. It's missing the remote, battery cover, and the AM antenna, although I have both of these from another one of these I have. It's main issue was barely audible sound and a faint display.
Image

Image

Image

First step is to remove the 4 screws on the bottom. Carefully seperate the black bottom from the remainder of the radio.
Image

unplug the 2 connector from the front J102 and J103.
Image
and the speaker connector.

Remove the 4 screws from the plate on top of the power transformer, and the 2 connectors going to the board. Remove the power transformer, and equalizer board from the main board.

In the pictures above you will see some discoloration on the main board, that is capacitor juice from the electrolytics. ALL of the electrolytics (except maybe the large 10000uf cap) will have to be replaced, including on the equalizer board, and under the shielded area where the 7.2mhz crystal is.

Some people may not know this, but the Bose radios are always on, the audio is just muted when you press the on/off button. So your Bose wave radio may have been on constantly for 20+ years.

Once the transformer and equalizer are removed, disconnect the battery connectors from the box to the board, they are just pressed in place. The board can be removed just by releasing a couple of small black tabs.

Here is the back side of the board.
Image

First thing you need to do is get some denatures alcohol and a paint brush. spray down the board where the cap juice is, give it a scrub and spray down again. then blow dry with canned air.

Once that is done begin replacing the electrolytic capacitors. I pick one value find and mark all of that value and then replace them. I mark the tops of the caps to make it easier to tell which ones I replace. You may smell a fish odor when desoldering, that is left over cap juice YUMMY!

WARNING!
be very careful of the traces on the circuit boards, they can easily be broken or the pads can break off when removing the caps. I broke one today, and fixed it with a small length of phone wire.

I started with the 10uf 16v caps, I replaced them with 16v, 35v, or 50v since that is what I had.

Code:
main board Electrolytic caps used in this radio
22 - 10uf 16v
4 - 1uf 50v
1 - .1uf 50v
4 - 0.47uf 50v
1 - 2.2uf 50v
3 - 3.3uf 50v
3 - 4.7uf 35v
4 - 47uf 16v
2 - 47uf 50v
3 - 100uf 16v
3 - 100uf 25v
1 - 220uf 16v
1 - 470uf 35v
total 52

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sat 23, 2015 5:59 am 
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Had to make a run to Fry's electronics tonight (I did not have enough 47uf caps), but I finished recapping the main board and equalizer.

Image

This is the second one of these that I have found. This information is for the Generation 1 Bose wave Radio, the other radios have different circuit boards.

I was very careful and only broke one trace, but I did mess up about 4 pads and had to do some "fancy" soldering. I double checked the polarity of all the caps (fixed one) and powered it up. It works just fine. The next step is to recap the display board.

To get to the display board, use a small screw driver in the 4 square holes on the bottom of the main case.
Image

You will then be able to remove the front cover.
Image

To remove the control panel, carefully pry up on the back of the panel and when it is about 1/4" pulled up, hold the display board in place and push the control panel forward to unplug it.
Image

To get the panel out, pull the speaker wires partially up through the hole in the case, the panel will tilt forward and can be removed. There are no screws in it, but there are 2 pegs that fit in holes on the circuit board.

Code:
Electrolytic caps in the display board
2 - 1uf 50v
1 - 4.7uf 35v
2 - 47uf 16v
1 - 220uf 6.3v


All the caps on the display board are very short so mounting replacements can be a problem. They can only stick up as high as the display, so some may have to be bent over.

Make sure to clean the green plastic lens as it will usually be filthy.

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sat 23, 2015 3:37 pm 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
I recapped the display board except for the 2 - 47uf 16v caps, as I did not get enough of them from Fry's last night, and the ones they have, would not fit between the board and the face plate.

I am not too worried about it as there is no capacitor juice on the board so I probably did not need to replace any of the display board caps. I will replace the 47uf's at some point later on.

Recapping the display board and cleaning the lens did not make much of a difference on the display brightness, so either it won't get any brighter or the 2 - 47uf caps might help, I don't know at this point.

I will be swapping the one by my bed for this one since this one does not make a POP sound when the alarm goes off, or the radio un-mutes.

In a bose wave radio (looking from the front) the left speaker is the left channel and the woofer, the right speaker is the right channel and the "twiddler", although there is not much separation, if you sit in front of one close enough you can hear the separation. the left channel has the wave tube that goes over to the right side.

Though some people claim that these radios do not have highs and lows, I would argue that they do. If you listen to certain Boston songs, or to the Star Wars theme song, in certain passages there are very high pitched "twinkling" sounds from a triangle (I think) that on cheap system you cannot hear. You can hear them just fine on the wave radio, as to the low end, sure it's never going to have the Bass to play hip hop, rap, or dubstep, but who listens to that anyways? :D It has plenty of low end to play pretty much anything from the 70's and classical sounds especially good on it. Classical on a wave radio is what I go to sleep to.

so to recap :lol: pun intended...
For about $7 to $10 in capacitors, $6 to $23 for a non working Bose wave radio picked up from a thrift store, and about 6 hours labor you can turn one of these around and sell it on ebay for between $125 and $200.

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sat 23, 2015 8:46 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 16749
Location: Albuquerque, NM 87123
Since you said to hold the Bose bashing, this is what I have to say about their products:









End.


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sun 24, 2015 1:13 am 
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Posts: 2382
Location: Santa Cruz mountains
The flourescent display may have low emission. They lose brightness with continued use, not unlike that of an eye tube.

Seen a lot of vintage VCRs with the same problem.


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sun 24, 2015 3:07 am 
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Well I thought so as well, but when I moved it to the bedroom, it was comparable to the other one I have, I think my bench light that made it look dim.

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sun 24, 2015 7:10 pm 
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Joined: Sep Fri 07, 2007 2:27 am
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Location: Grand Chute, Wisconsin
They aren't bad clock/radios, but they would do much better with a tone control. At low volume all you get is muffled bass. When used to fill the room with sound, they do a pretty decent job. I'm not throwing mine away.

.


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: May Sun 24, 2015 8:41 pm 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
That's not my experience. I listen to the radio at night before going to sleep. I usually have the volume set to 41 or 42, loud enough for me to hear but not the wife. I listen to classical at night, and 70's during the day. Although bass is represented, I do hear all the other instruments in the orchestra. I am not sure if this is the result of recapping the radio, as I have never heard one that was original. I have only owned 2, and both did not work when I got them. 1 had a power supply hum and no audio, and this recent one had barely any audio.

I would really like to see someone do an actual analysis of one of these and see exactly what it can and cannot do. I have done some googling and the only information I could find on frequency response was a guy who tested them for what they could do on the low end. He reported that they had good response down to 70hz which is more than good enough for most music. But his analysis only went up to 300hz the response curve for that range was relatively level.

I've never seen such a polarizing radio in my life. Yes I like them, no I would never pay more than $50 for one.

I did work with a guy who sold them, he worked at a Bose store. He told me about the show they would put on, and I think the big reason some audiophiles do not like them, is that they trick you, by starting the show with a whole bunch of high end speakers setup and music playing, the lead you to believe that the sound you are hearing is coming from the large speakers. Then one by one they remove the speakers (which were never hooked up to anything) and when the speakers are all gone, the only thing left is a table with something on it covered by a black cloth. The remove the cloth and reveal (in early days) a little Bose wave radio. Then to prove that the sound is coming from the radio they unplug it. They would have people come up and check for themselves. He told me a lot of people would get really mad about this. :? Some refused to believe the sound they were hearing came from a little radio. He told me it was legit what you heard in the show came from that little radio, no trickery (in that respect).

he said that he never owned one, not because he did not like them, but because they cost too much.

I have a recording of him talking about it, I should post it some time.

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Feb Mon 15, 2016 5:03 pm 
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Hi Flinx:

New member here. Hope you're still around. I also have the same model Bose that's buzzing and want to recap the board. I've never done anything like this before, and even don't understand the different types of capacitors. Since this radio is not worth paying to have repaired, I've got nothing to lose trying.

I was planning to order the caps from Digikey unless you know of a better source. Problem is, I don't know enough to say which types of capacitors to order. Would you be kind enough to share with me the types of capacitors I'll need? I know they're electrolytic and their values (you posted that - thank you). But, aren't there different types/sizes of electrolytic capacitors? I wanted to just email the list to Digikey, but I'm afraid they may ask me what type for each I need, and want to be able to answer them.

Thanks!

Burt


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Feb Mon 15, 2016 11:56 pm 
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Patgate wrote:
Hi Flinx:

New member here. Hope you're still around. I also have the same model Bose that's buzzing and want to recap the board. I've never done anything like this before, and even don't understand the different types of capacitors. Since this radio is not worth paying to have repaired, I've got nothing to lose trying.

I was planning to order the caps from Digikey unless you know of a better source. Problem is, I don't know enough to say which types of capacitors to order. Would you be kind enough to share with me the types of capacitors I'll need? I know they're electrolytic and their values (you posted that - thank you). But, aren't there different types/sizes of electrolytic capacitors? I wanted to just email the list to Digikey, but I'm afraid they may ask me what type for each I need, and want to be able to answer them.

Thanks!

Burt


I bought the cheapest Electrolytics I could find from either mouser or digikey. If you want to get fancy you can order electrolytics that can handle 105° C temps or higher. I did install caps rated at voltages higher than what are in the radio. The high temperature rated caps and the higher voltages will result in the capacitors lasting longer. Just remember the caps on the display are a certain height and you will want to match that. The rest mostly do not matter.

If you really want brand names then these are ones reported to be good:
Rubycon
Samxon
Panasonic
Nichicon
Chemicon
Sanyo
Xicon

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Feb Wed 17, 2016 6:01 am 
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Flinx:

Cold feet already. That's not to say I'm not up to the challenge. Thing is, there doesn't appear to be any cap leakage. And, I've read somewhere that the IC the heat sink is attached to can also fail and cause a buzz. Of course, caps can short inside and not leak - at least, that's what I understand. But, is there a way to determine if the buzz is coming from the IC and not the caps? If not, I'll just stick with Plan A and see what happens. Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Feb Wed 17, 2016 1:38 pm 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
Patgate wrote:
Flinx:

Cold feet already. That's not to say I'm not up to the challenge. Thing is, there doesn't appear to be any cap leakage. And, I've read somewhere that the IC the heat sink is attached to can also fail and cause a buzz. Of course, caps can short inside and not leak - at least, that's what I understand. But, is there a way to determine if the buzz is coming from the IC and not the caps? If not, I'll just stick with Plan A and see what happens. Thanks


Look on the circuit board for little patches around the electrolytics. If you can't see them then use a soldering iron to test for leaks. if you apply high heat to the area around the capacitors and you get a strong fish smell then the caps have leaked.

I would replace them all anyways, if the unit was plugged in for most of its life then it has been running for almost 20 years. Remember these radios are not turned off when you press the off button they are just muted. I have read about the chip you speak of and if it is bad you can get them from ebay. Either way you will be replacing the caps at some point, and if I remember correctly bad caps are the primary reason for that chip to fail.

Take your time, replace the caps, double check the cap polarity, then test the unit, if there is still a buzz then replace the chip.

Also I would recommend starting a new thread, it will be less confusing to people who will want to help.

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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Feb Wed 17, 2016 2:57 pm 
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I tried to post a pic of the board to show how clean it was, but couldn't figure out how to upload it. And, I remember your comment about these radios being on all the time (very strange). But, this one was in storage much of its life.

I'm going to do the caps and the chip. If I run into any problems, I'll begin a new thread. Thanks for your help.


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Apr Mon 11, 2016 3:43 am 
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Thanks for the great write-up, it gave me the confidence to recap our old Bose. After almost 20 years of constant use we woke up one morning to a horrible hum/buzzing sound. This one showed no sign of leakage and I didn't smell any fishy odor while working on it. Ours is a version 2 with 3 AA batteries and the internal antenna. The board is different and uses different caps so I thought I'd share my list-
Main board-
3- 2.2uf 50v
3- .47uf 50v
18- 10uf 25v
3- 47uf 16v
4- 100uf 16v
1- 220 16v
1-4.7 50v
4- 1uf 50v
1- .33uf 50v
1- 3.3uf 50v
1- 470uf 35v
1- 1000uf 35v
Watch the diameters of the 470 and 1000 because space is a little tight there. I had to get fancy bending the leads around because the ones I bought were a little fatter than the originals.

Display board-
2- 220uf 6.3v
1- 4.7uf 50v
Height is the only concern with these and the 4.7 has plenty of room to lay it on it's side. I bought all the caps from Mouser and the total cost with shipping was just over 13 dollars. After recapping the radio works great again, maybe good for another 20 years.


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W - Clock isn't right...
PostPosted: Jul Sun 21, 2019 7:02 pm 
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Posts: 1
I have one from a Goodwill and the clock won't keep time. I think it's set for 50Hz, but for the life of me I can't figure out how to get it set to 60Hz for US power....


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Jul Tue 23, 2019 9:53 pm 
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Joined: Nov Fri 30, 2007 5:20 am
Posts: 203
Location: lake geneva, wi
When new it was the best $150 radio that $300 can buy. Still worth $75 to $90 and if missing, the remote is inexpensive on Ebay.
Because the radio is always powered opt for quality brand 105C 'lytics. Ignore the previous sentence if you are planning to flip it.


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 Post subject: Re: Bose AWR1-1W Refurbish
PostPosted: Jul Thu 25, 2019 1:46 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 919
Location: dayton oh usa
better replace the big can too.
had several that would only hum loudly and it was open.
if you want to keep these you have to replace EVERY ELECTROLYTIC CAP!
i have yet to see these units work properly until i did.
the original 85c rated caps are all way past their lifetime even in a well controlled environment.
i stock mainly panasonic fc which are entry level low esr.
its safe to use them in these radios.


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