This fantastic model is straight from Japan, manufactured by Takara Tomy. Consequently, nearly all text included with the model is in Japanese. This is not a huge hinderance, as the transformation process is fairly easily understood with the graphical depictions in the instructions, but if you wanted to read up on, say, the history of the character or read an important detail about the model, then you must learn to read Japanese or get it translated by someone.
The model itself in robot form stands approximately 9 inches high, and is made entirely of plastic. No die cast parts are included. The complexity of the model makes it a poor choice for young children or irresponsible adults, but the detail is the highest of any Soundwave model on the market, and as such could be considered the standard by which all others are measured. The index finger on both hands is articulated with two joints, and the other fingers are articulated with one. This allows Soundwave to "point" and be posed in a variety of ways, given the rest of his extensive articulation is taken into consideration.
The model includes Soundwave's blaster, a miniature Megatron in gun mode that the model can hold in either hand, an "energon cube" that mounts with a simple snap to the model's cassette door, and as an awesome bonus, also includes Laserbeak, the cassette tape that transforms into a bird, and looks very similar to how it did in the animated show. The cassette tape includes its own case as well. The cassette door on the model's chest opens and the tape can be stored inside. As another bonus, the rear wall of the cassette cavity can be pushed back to hold up to three separate cassettes, sold separately. Ravage, Rumble, Frenzy and Buzzsaw are all sized to fit and work with this model.
In portable cassette player mode, the model is very solid. Most attachments, such as the scanner piece, and the blaster, either fold down and store somewhere on the model, or attach firmly in an inconspicuous place to make the alternate mode look very clean and remove any worries about lost parts. The parts that do not attach (energon cube, megatron blaster, cassette case) should be stored where they won't be misplaced.
The only downside was the price. To pay this price, there should be substantial die-cast content, and as stated earlier, there is none. Be sure you are careful with this; it is not designed to withstand great wear and tear, and is best suited for serious adult collectors and enthusiasts. The Japanese text printed on the box and in the literature helped to reinforce the authenticity of the product. I'm very satisfied with the product overall. Great purchase for enthusiasts and collectors. Shop around for the best price.