HB 444-25A / 25B Comparison

The following photos are of two radios that I personally own, a HB 444-25A and HB 444-25B. As I took each one apart I noticed quite a few differences between the two radios. These photos will show the major differences between the two radios with comments below each photo. Each radio has 12 tubes but some of the tube numbers are different. The last 4 photos are of other HB 444-25B radios that I do not own and there are differences as well. As an example there is a 25B with a 100 milliwatt / 5 watt switch which is not found on my radio or the other example from EBAY. My 25B version has a crystal bank which allows you to unplug and mix and match crystals. I do not have photos of the inside of any other HB 444-25B so I do not know if my crystal bank is unique, modified or even a Lafayette proto-type. If anyone has any additional information or wishes to send us pictures of their HB-444 25A or 25B, please use the e-mail link at the bottom of the page.                    

 

 

Front View - HB 444-25A (left)  HB 444-25B (right)                                                  Top View - HB 444-25A (left)  HB 444-25B (right)

 

Rear View - HB 444-25A (left)  HB 444-25B (right)                                                Without Cabinet - HB 444-25A (left)  HB 444-25B (right)

 

  HB 444-25A (left)  HB 444-25B (right)

 

S Meter 25A                                                                                                           S Meter 25B

 

Some major differences to point out, both have 12 tubes but the placement in the chassis is different along with other components (25A left - 25B right). 

 

Note the difference between the two crystal banks. The 25A (left) has it's crystals soldered in while the 25B (right) has it's crystals plugged into the bank. 

 

Looking down on the front left by the meter you will see a resistor on the 25A meter (left) but not on the 25B meter (right). Also differences in layout of the components.

 

Another look at the two crystal banks. The 25A (left) has it's crystals soldered in while the 25B (right) has it's crystals plugged into the bank. 

 

Bottom view of each radio with notable differences (25A left - 25B right).

 

Rear view (25A left - 25B right). Note the red switch (bottom right) found on the 25A. This is a 100 milliwatt / 5 watt switch (not found on my version of the 25B) .    

 

The tag with the serial number is found on the left side of the 25A and not on the 25B. 

 

Center view of the rear of each radio with few differences (25A left - 25B right).. 

 

The right rear of the 25A has the 100 milliwatt / 5 watt switch where the 25B has it's serial number tag (mine and EBAY version). A 25B version below has the switch.

 

Another view of the crystal banks. The 25A (left) has it's crystals soldered in while the 25B (right) has it's crystals plugged directly into the bank. 

 

Another view of the back of the S meters from each radio (25A left - 25B right).

 

          Top view of cabinet. The 25B (right) has a cutout in the cabinet to access to crystal bank externally. This is the only 25B that I have seen that has this.

The cutout appears to be perfectly cut so I'm not sure if someone cut this professionally or if this radio was some type of Lafayette proto-type. 

 

 

A close-up view of each cabinet (25A left - 25B right).

 

Rear view of each radio with notable differences (25A left - 25B right). 

 

This HB 444-25B radio (owned by Paul) shows a different channel selector knob. Also on the back you will see the serial number tag is on the left like my 25A.

It also has the 100 milliwatt / 5 watt switch on the right (not shown). This is not present on the EBAY version (below) or my version.   

More From Paul!

Paul has recently purchased a second HB 444-25B radio and clearly demonstrates that there were indeed differences during the HB 444-25B production run.

Here are photos generously donated by Paul showing his two HB 444-25B radios side by side, one with and one without the 100 milliwat / 5 watt switch.

Every other aspect of the radios seem to be identical except for the 100 milliwat / 5 watt switch and the channel selector.  

Please note, the HB 444-25B with the 100 milliwat / 5 watt switch is always shown on the left.

 

 

Paul's HB 444-25B model with 100 milliwat / 5 watt switch on left - version without switch on right.

 

 

Paul's HB 444-25B radio with original Lafayette stock microphone.

  

Paul has 2 You Tube videos of this radio and I encourage everyone to watch. Paul demonstrates the operation of the radio and provides historical information.

Paul's You Tube Link to HB-444-25B (Front View)       http://youtu.be/l7fPRVWpVg8

Paul's You Tube Link to HB-444-25B (Rear View)        http://youtu.be/PwF8uBm4j40

The above photos are courtesy of Paul H. We would like to thank Paul for taking the time to take over 80 photos and submitting them to us for publication.

Thanks Paul!

 

Here is a version from EBAY that is exactly like mine where it has the serial number tag on the right with no 100 milliwatt / 5 watt switch on the right.

However this version does not have the cut-out slot on top of the cabinet and I don't know if the crystal bank is like my version.

 

Still Curious?

Here are some photos of a Lafayette HB 444 (not an A or B version) found on EBAY.

 

Some of the differences between the HB 444 and the HB 444-25A & 25B:

The 100 milliwatt / 5 watt switch (photo on right) in black instead of red.

The model number on the HB 444 is located under the Range Boost switch on right where the 25A & 25B models have the model number under the meter.

The HB 444 has two white rocker switches, one on right for the Range Boost and the other under the meter with unknown function. Anyone know what its is for??

The HB 444 25A & 25B does not have this second white rocker switch under the meter. 

Please share any information you can about these radios. I find the differences very interesting as I'm sure you do. There is not much history written about these radios so anything you can contribute would be greatly appreciated by all. Don't forget to e-mail us with your comments and suggestions as well!      

                                   

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