"Supercharged" Radiwow R-108 Transoceanic DXing Performance
Although the new Radiwow R-108 seems to be a quality control nightmare from the warranty-shirking manufacturer, if you are lucky enough to purchase a decent unit on eBay (or of you happen to have Navy electronics training to repair a wacky model), the radio actually works quite well once all the bugs have been banished. For a grand total of around $95 US, you can have a "Supercharged" travel portable that is lightweight, compact, and about half the price of a similarly modified Skywave SSB (such as in this side-by-side photo of these suspiciously similar Shenzhen, China siblings, with exactly the same height, length and thickness). Nobody ever said that the Chinese reverse engineers didn't have a sense of humor! (this photo is also posted at the below link, after Groups.io deletes it :-) https://dreamcrafts.box.com/s/ya3pwjeclw7j80ll36a8pskgr3wwsbwn
This early morning I had the chance to try out the "Supercharged" R-108 in the reception of the South Korean big gun 972-HLCA, which was at an S9 level on the modified portable about 2 hours before local sunrise here (shown in the photo below, which is also posted at https://dreamcrafts.box.com/s/wxz42ts3kljnui7ltrhppx076id06m05
In comparison to the Skywave SSB the Chinese-made economy model has a pretty wimpy audio amp, but a DXer can work around this by boosting up the audio gain on his digital recorder (and/ or audio processing software). With a little practice a DXer can have a lot of transoceanic DXing fun with this tiny, compact portable-- but only after all the reverse-engineering bugs have been worked out!
972 HLCA Dangjin, S. Korea, 1500 kW Piano musical theme and female speech at temporary S9 level at 1151 UTC (Stand-alone 7.5" loopstick Radiwow R-108) https://dreamcrafts.box.com/s/huxz3iivyr6itysvjtze48mmoo0wshk9