Portal Radio is why Valve needs to build hardware

We’ve seen Portal gun builds, a few cute turret replicas, and even a miniaturized version of GLaDOS, but [John]‘s Portal radio replica is the first physical version of this oft-forgotten Portal item.

Interestingly, the entire radio is made from scrap. The spheroid body shell is made from the foam insulation from a commercial freezer, carefully sculpted, Bondoed, and painted over the course of 300 hours. The radio guts are taken from an upcycled radio, and powered by either an internal battery or a wall wart DC adapter – perfect for carrying around a test chamber with a portal gun.

Right now, there’s an AM/FM receiver inside the radio along with an audio input so an iPod or such can be plugged in. While we would have loved to see a loop of theuptempo version Still Alive, we’re guessing [John] hasn’t found an easy way to do that with junked parts yet.

Check out [John]‘s build video after the break.


  1. chango says:

    Even better would be to add GPS so that when taken to certain locations the LED would turn red and computer RFI noises would get played.

  2. NickS says:

    300 hours seems a bit…long.

    • Kubikiri1of587 says:

      If I had GLaDOS breathing down my neck to make them perfect, I’d spend that time too. After all we all know what she does to things/people she is displeased with. No fun tube ride to the incinerator in Brians future ;)

    • Hackerspacer says:

      The spheroid body shell is made from the foam insulation from a commercial freezer, carefully sculpted, Bondoed, and painted over the course of 300 hours.

      Or he could have 3d printed a shell in about 4.

      Your move, 3D printers.

    • truebassb says:

      Hey there. It took that time because i was experimenting on how it can be done accurately,regardless if i knew my way around on Sculpturing on Foam. My second try took 2 Noons,and my third a little bit more but it looks better than my first (the one you see in this video),maybe i’ll put a video up aswell soon,you can subscribe so you wont miss it.

  3. MichelM says:

    He’s not the first, here’s another portal radio build from 2009 made by a guy called flauzus. be sure to check it out it has some great pics which will give you an idea how to build your own portal radio


    Man that portal radio has been on my to do list for so long! Really should take a crack at it!

  4. Galane says:

    The HoMedics SS-5010 Soundspa Premier is the closest there is to a commercially produced Portal style clock.

  5. jos says:

    looks cool but whats with the narator sounding like bella legossi playin dracula?lol

  6. notmyfault2000 says:

    I have the Still Alive (Looping Radio Mix) song set as my phone’s ringtone. Now I have difficulty playing Portal because I stop and try to answer my phone when I get near one of those radios. I don’t need that happening in real life too!

  7. Galane says:

    What would be neat on a radio like this is an LED POV display for the station number and time.

    • truebassb says:

      Hello. This is actually what i wanted to do in the first place. I have a circuit from another radio that can migrate to a Portal one,but maybe in a later model,as of the three radios i’ve made,two have an Aperture Logo,and one has the typical 85.2Fm.

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