Date   

Re: Has anyone used a component tuner for AM DXing?

Russ Edmunds
 

The biggest problem I've encountered is that the tuners I've used are broad as can be. I haven't tried to modify
any of them with narrower filters -- if such are available. But one thing I've learned from putting narrower FM IF filters
into Sony 2010's is that just putting in narrower filters may not be enough as that doesn't make the same difference
that it does on FM on a tuner. Bottom line, you might have to make more modifications.

Back in the day, I used a Fisher tube-type tuner for both AM & FM DX, which seemed to do better in terms of adjacent
 channel selectivity but we didn't have any AM IBOC to deal with.


Russ Edmunds
15 mi NW Phila
Grid FN20id
<wb2bjh@...>

AM: Modified Sony ICF2010's (2) barefoot w/whip
FM: Yamaha T-80 & T-85, each w/ Conrad RDS Decoder;
Onkyo T-450RDS; Tecsun PL-310 ( 2);
modified Sony ICF2010 w/APS9B @ 15';
Grundig G8 w/whip; modified Sony ICF2010 w/whip


On Wed, Feb 4, 2015 at 11:38 AM, n3ikq@... [ultralightdx] <ultralightdx@...> wrote:
 

Hi, A little off topic but has anyone used a component tuner from a "high end" company like NAD, Denon etc. for at home DXing? Their open design would make them easy to modify. Their would probably be enough room to add a little audio amp and speaker inside the case for a stand alone radio. Any thoughts, experiences or links? Thanks for your time! Rick




Has anyone used a component tuner for AM DXing?

Richard Jones
 

Hi, A little off topic but has anyone used a component tuner from a "high end" company like NAD, Denon etc. for at home DXing? Their open design would make them easy to modify. Their would probably be enough room to add a little audio amp and speaker inside the case for a stand alone radio. Any thoughts, experiences or links? Thanks for your time! Rick



Puyallup, WA Ultralight TP's for 2-4

Gary DeBock
 

Hello All,
 
Asian conditions seemed to take a downhill slide this morning, with only limited action on the low band starting around 1500. There weren't very many vibrant signals, and even those didn't stick around for long.
 
At my 1430 start time the band sounded practically comatose, with only a few weak carriers on 594, 603 and 1566. Signals didn't improve much until 594-JOAK rose out of the noise with a few fair to good peaks around 1500, followed by 603 (presumed HLSA) in and out with poor-level pop music. Unlike yesterday 1566-HLAZ had no monster fade in, and struggled to stay in audio for most of sunrise enhancement. The collection of anemic Asians bailed early around 1520, failing to get any decent sunrise enhancement boost. Such was the story of a pretty mediocre morning.
 
594  JOAK   Tokyo, Japan   NHK news at a fair level with Japanese male announcer at 1503
 
73 and Good DX,
Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
7.5" loopstick C.Crane Skywave Ultralight +
15" FSL antenna
 
(For anyone interested, a recording of yesterday's thunderous fade-in by 1566-HLAZ from 1515-1522 here yesterday is linked below)
 
 


2015 IRCA Slogans List - How to get one!!

Phil Bytheway <phil_tekno@...>
 

IRCA Slogans List (Winter 2015)
 
   This completely revised Slogans List includes radio slogans from the US and Canada (over 4400).
   Prices: IRCA/NRC members – $7.25 (US), $8.50 (Canada) $10.00 (México), $10.75 (rest of the world). Non-IRCA members – add $1.00.
 
   To order from the IRCA Goodie Factory, send the correct amount (in US funds payable to IRCA) to: IRCA GOODIE FACTORY, 9705 MARY NW, SEATTLE WA  98117-2334. Or, order through PayPal [add $1.00] to email: phil_tekno@... (Phil Bytheway). Please state club affiliation when ordering.


New IRCA Slogan's List

Phil Bytheway <phil_tekno@...>
 

IRCA Slogans List (Winter 2015)
 
   This completely revised Slogans List includes radio slogans from the US and Canada (over 4400).
   Prices: IRCA/NRC members – $7.25 (US), $8.50 (Canada) $10.00 (México), $10.75 (rest of the world). Non-IRCA members – add $1.00.

Phil Bytheway
IRCA President / DX Monitor Editor-in-Chief / Goodie Factory Manager
Seattle WA
Drake R-7 / KIWA Loop


1566-HLAZ on the Warpath

Gary DeBock
 

Hello All,
 
The Korean big gun 1566-HLAZ had its best signals of the new year around 1520 here this morning, pounding in with a huge signal while all the other TP's were fairly subdued. Once in a while some exceptional signals show up in the dead of winter.
 
 
73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
7.5" loopstick C.Crane Skywave Ultralight +
15" FSL antenna
 
 


Re: Radio use in public locations

Paul Blundell
 

Well I have had my first "run in" with this :(

This morning on my way to work I called past the supermarket, when I returned to my car I grabbed my back pack and opened this on the back seat of my car and got out my 7.5" loop stick equipped PL-380 to do a quick session in my car. Not long after this I had a tap on my window and one of the shop owners wanted to know what I was doing, I explained and he seemed happy enough.

In the future I will make sure I carry the "intro to uldxing guide" with me :)


Maybe of interest

Paul Blundell
 

RADIO-TIMETRAVELLER: The Ultralight dBµ Mystery, S-Meters, And Field Strength





Kchibo KK-D202

Phillips
 

Some time ago I had a whinge about the failure rate of my Chinese made radios.  Well in the case of one of them I was WRONG.
 
I bought a Kchibo KK-D202 because it was cheap, had DSP, a S/N-dBu display and PLL.  Unfortunately it came with a manual written in Chinese and the Chinese language is all double-dutch to me.  It seems that, as I was playing around with the buttons to see if I could fathom out how it worked, I inadvertently activated two of its button-selectable features.
 
I accidentally came across a blog about this radio which said some interesting things. 
1.  The radio uses the Si4734 chip.
2  Button six can be used to change the maximum volume.  One of my problems - weak audio.
3. Pressing buttons can disable the SW part of the radio.  My other problem - no SW.
 
I've had a rummage around the buttons and found;
Long  pressing button 6 with the radio off will toggle high and low volume.
Long pressing button 8 (tune down) with the radio off will toggle SW availability.
Long pressing button 4 (tune up) with the radio off will toggle 9 or 10 KHz AM spacing.
 
There may be more but I am too scared to rummage too much.
 
Having restored the Kchibo to its proper state, I hotted it up by replacing the tiny 2" ferrite rod with a 7.5" ferrite rod centre wound with 60/46 litz.  On my test frequency (5CS, 1044KHz, 2KW, 200KM), the S/N went from 12 to 18 and the dBu went from 31 to 54.  Holding another 7.5" rod to one end adds 2 to the S/N and 4 to the dBu.
 
The radio has much better DX listening clarity using earbuds rather than the speaker because the tinny speaker has its best response in the noise part of the audio spectrum whereas the earbuds have much better response in the desired part of the spectrum.
 
The radio lacks dial lighting, variable DSP, direct entry keypad and the S/N-dBu display only stays on for a few seconds but, with the 7.5" rod it performs pretty well - probably due to the Si4734 chip.  One of my issues with AM DX from home is the proximity of a number of high-powered stations but the hotted up D202 has quite good AM adjacent station rejection and is actually much better in this area than my Icom IC-706.
 
All in all I think I got good value with this radio.


 
QWERTY bad!
Dvorak BETTER
Capewell BEST!!
 


Ultralight DXing Report - Launceston Tasmania

Paul Blundell
 

Date: 03/02/2015

Time: 15:35 - 15:55

Location: Royal Park, Launceston Tasmania

Radio: 7.5” Loopstick Tecsun PL-380

Total stations logged: 14

New stations logged: 0

Notes: Yesterday afternoon my wife was unwell and resting following her operation last week. I took our daughter for a walk and sort of just kept going where I ended up at our local Bunnings. On the walk back I stopped at Royal Park and did a quick portable ultralight DXing session. 

I logged the following stations:

531 3GG

540 7SD

558 7BU

585 7RN

594 3WV

621 3RN

693 3AW

747 7PB

774 3LO

828 3GI

855 3CR

864 7RPH

900 7AD

1008 0_HPON (Launceston)


Signals were fairly good with most stations being up at around the normal signal level or even in some cases a little bit better. This location was really enjoyable and I am hoping to undertake a night time session from this location shortly.  

Photos here: Ultralight DXing: Ultralight DXing Report - Launceston Tasmania - 03/02/2015



Long Term Ultralight DXing Project Results - 03/02/2015 - Session 2

Paul Blundell
 

Date: 03/02/2015

Time:  15:25 - 15:40

Location: Royal Park, Launceston Tasmania

Weather: Fine, warm - hot with no clouds and moderate winds.

531 - 3GG: 4

540 - 7SD: 5

549 - 2CR: 0

558 - 7BU: 5

585 - 7RN: 4

621 - 3RN: 5

693 - 3AW:4

747 - 7PB: 4

774 - 3LO: 4

855 - 3CR: 3

900 - 7AD: 4

954 - 2UE: 0

1008 - HPON (Launceston) : 5

1080 - HPON (Hobart): 1

1116 - 3AK: 0

1179 - 3RPH: 0

1224 - 3EA: 0

1260 - 3SR: 0

1341 - HPON (Geelong): 1 

1377 - 3MP: 1

1395 - 5AA: 1

1440 - 1SBS: 0

1503 - 3KND: 0

1593 - HPON (Melbourne): 0 

Notes: Yesterday afternoon my wife was unwell and resting following her operation last week. I took our daughter for a walk and sort of just kept going where I ended up at our local Bunnings. On the walk back I stopped at Royal Park and did a quick session. Results were an improvement on what I normally hear with some signal levels in the lower parts of the band, most stations were a signal point better than normal. 




Puyallup, WA Ultralight TP's for 2-3

Gary DeBock
 

Hello All,
 
Asian reception wasn't bad at all this morning-- as long as you like 1566-HLAZ. The big gun Korean station blasted in with a huge signal around 1518 to reach its strongest level of the new year, while most of the other Asians struggled to reach audio level at all.
 
At my 1430 start time it was already pretty obvious that the session was going to be an HLAZ show, with the station at a fair to good level in the darkness while no other Asians were managing better than a weak carrier. Around 1450 some low and middle band TP's started making a halfhearted attempt at audio, with 594-JOAK and 972-HLCA managing some poor to fair peaks in domestic splatter. 1593-CNR1 also started flirting with audio around the same time, but none of these came close to HLAZ's potent signal. Around 1518 its Chinese Christian service hit a monster peak, with the new C.Crane Skywave signal level bar graph pegged for the duration. 1593-CNR1 was a poor second at the time, struggling to get out of the Seattle splatter for more than a few seconds at a time. Overall the session was truly a one-station show, with sunrise enhancement boosting 1566-HLAZ's signal to one of the strongest levels ever heard here in Puyallup.
 
1566  HLAZ   Jeju, S. Korea   Music, female and male Chinese speech at an exceptional level during Christian program at 1518; best signals of the new year
 
73 and Good DX,
Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
7.5" loopstick C.Crane Skywave Ultralight +
15" FSL antenna
 
 


Re: C.Crane Skywave Vs. Eton Traveler III--MW SensitivityAnalysis [2 Attachments]

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks for the information Gary. I look forward to reading the full report in them

Paul


From: D1028Gary@... [ultralightdx]
Sent: ‎3/‎02/‎2015 8:07 PM
To: ultralightdx@...
Subject: [ultralightdx] C.Crane Skywave Vs. Eton Traveler III--MW SensitivityAnalysis [2 Attachments]

 

Hello All,
 
By now most of you know that there are a couple of new Ultralight radios which provide superior MW sensitivity in comparison to previous models-- the C.Crane Skywave and the Eton Traveler III. Both of these new radios are powered by new SiLabs DSP chips, and both will be included in the upcoming 2015 Ultralight Radio Shootout review. Previous MP3's have been posted comparing the stock MW sensitivity of these two new models, and I assume that many of you have formed an opinion about this already. Many of you have already purchased one or both of these new models.
 
After testing (and dissecting) both of these breakthrough models thoroughly, I was very curious about why one model seemed to have a slight MW sensitivity edge over the other. Was it because of a superior loopstick, or because the DSP chip provided an MW sensitivity edge? I decided to find out.
 
Attached is a photo of the two stock loopsticks, one of which is obviously longer than the other. The model which seemed to have a slight MW sensitivity edge was the one with the longer loopstick. But what would happen if the two models had identical loopsticks? Would they both be equally sensitive on MW, or not? I decided to find out.
 
Both models had identical 7.5" loopsticks transplanted into their circuitry (see attached photo), and then both were tested in the reception of four extremely weak MW daytime DX stations. For comparison purposes, a 7.5" loopstick Tecsun PL-380 model was thrown into the competition. The following MP3's were recorded shortly after local noon, with the first 15 seconds using the 7.5" loopstick Tecsun PL-380, the next 15 seconds using the 7.5" loopstick C.Crane Skywave, and the final 15 seconds using the 7.5" loopstick Eton Traveler III. Both the PL-380 and Skywave were in their 1 kHz DSP settings:
 
530  SeaTac Airport TIS   (15 watts at 25 miles)
 
980  CKNW   New Westminster, BC   (50 kW at 160 miles)
 
1230  KWYZ   Everett, WA   (1 kW at 75 miles)
 
1700  Vashon Is. TIS   (15w at 15 miles)
 
Comments:  As usual, the PL-380 model seems limited by its tendency toward heterodynes and somewhat muffled audio. In my opinion, there is a new MW sensitivity leader when all the radios have identical 7.5" loopsticks, although you need to listen closely to each MP3 in order to determine this. In addition, this diagnostic test demonstrates the effectiveness of the longer stock loopstick in the other model-- presumably the reason why it has done so well in the "barefoot" signal comparisons. It also demonstrates the effectiveness of the DSP chip in its competing model-- which can provide slightly superior MW sensitivity when the antennas are equalized.
 
73 and Good DX,
Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
 
 
 
  


C.Crane Skywave Vs. Eton Traveler III--MW Sensitivity Analysis

Gary DeBock
 

Hello All,
 
By now most of you know that there are a couple of new Ultralight radios which provide superior MW sensitivity in comparison to previous models-- the C.Crane Skywave and the Eton Traveler III. Both of these new radios are powered by new SiLabs DSP chips, and both will be included in the upcoming 2015 Ultralight Radio Shootout review. Previous MP3's have been posted comparing the stock MW sensitivity of these two new models, and I assume that many of you have formed an opinion about this already. Many of you have already purchased one or both of these new models.
 
After testing (and dissecting) both of these breakthrough models thoroughly, I was very curious about why one model seemed to have a slight MW sensitivity edge over the other. Was it because of a superior loopstick, or because the DSP chip provided an MW sensitivity edge? I decided to find out.
 
Attached is a photo of the two stock loopsticks, one of which is obviously longer than the other. The model which seemed to have a slight MW sensitivity edge was the one with the longer loopstick. But what would happen if the two models had identical loopsticks? Would they both be equally sensitive on MW, or not? I decided to find out.
 
Both models had identical 7.5" loopsticks transplanted into their circuitry (see attached photo), and then both were tested in the reception of four extremely weak MW daytime DX stations. For comparison purposes, a 7.5" loopstick Tecsun PL-380 model was thrown into the competition. The following MP3's were recorded shortly after local noon, with the first 15 seconds using the 7.5" loopstick Tecsun PL-380, the next 15 seconds using the 7.5" loopstick C.Crane Skywave, and the final 15 seconds using the 7.5" loopstick Eton Traveler III. Both the PL-380 and Skywave were in their 1 kHz DSP settings:
 
530  SeaTac Airport TIS   (15 watts at 25 miles)
 
980  CKNW   New Westminster, BC   (50 kW at 160 miles)
 
1230  KWYZ   Everett, WA   (1 kW at 75 miles)
 
1700  Vashon Is. TIS   (15w at 15 miles)
 
Comments:  As usual, the PL-380 model seems limited by its tendency toward heterodynes and somewhat muffled audio. In my opinion, there is a new MW sensitivity leader when all the radios have identical 7.5" loopsticks, although you need to listen closely to each MP3 in order to determine this. In addition, this diagnostic test demonstrates the effectiveness of the longer stock loopstick in the other model-- presumably the reason why it has done so well in the "barefoot" signal comparisons. It also demonstrates the effectiveness of the DSP chip in its competing model-- which can provide slightly superior MW sensitivity when the antennas are equalized.
 
73 and Good DX,
Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)
 
 
 
  


Re: Just got my CCrane Skywave Today

Rik
 

I have the same opinion about the new ETON Traveler III.- FARMERIK


Long Term UltraLight DXing Project - Graph until 3/2/2015

Paul Blundell
 

I have just started to graph the results of my sessions to date. I have found that the bottom half of the band generally preforms better and this is reflected in this graph.


http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-6HqCwbrOaS0/VNANy0ACs3I/AAAAAAAAFiA/rBhzeZ6gCBc/s1600/LTULDXingProject_03022015JPG.JPG



Long Term Ultralight DXing Project Results - 03/02/2015

Paul Blundell
 

Date: 03/02/2015

Time: 9:40 - 9:55

Location: Windsor Park, Riverside. Launceston Tasmania

Weather: Fine. Warm with light cloud cover

531 - 3GG: 2

540 - 7SD: 4

549 - 2CR: c

558 - 7BU: 3

585 - 7RN: 4

621 - 3RN: 5

693 - 3AW: 3

747 - 7PB: 3

774 - 3LO: 5

855 - 3CR: 1

900 - 7AD: 1

954 - 2UE: c

1008 - HPON (Launceston) : 5

1080 - HPON (Hobart): 2

1116 - 3AK: c

1179 - 3RPH: c

1224 - 3EA: c

1260 - 3SR: c

1341 - HPON (Geelong): 1

1377 - 3MP: c

1395 - 5AA: c

1440 - 1SBS: c

1503 - 3KND: c

1593 - HPON (Melbourne): c

Notes: A quick session while out and about from the office. Results were as expected with 7SD on 540KHz being a little bit down in signal level compared to normal.



Just got my CCrane Skywave Today

Tom Welch
 

At 1st glance, the audio and build quality seems to be at a much 

higher level than other Tecsun PL radios I have owned in the past.  


Glad to see CCrane took its time before releasing this radio to

the public.


I'll know more when I run this radio through its paces in a few days.


Tom Welch

Mesa, AZ  USA



 


ULR SW logs w/ the PL606

wpe6bvt@...
 

 Happy Groundhog Day to the US ULR crew & a cheery 2nd of Feb. to everyone else (tho it's probably 3 Feb. in OZ/NZ)..a few interesting logs lately & one new ULR country added, so things are looking up for mid-Winter..

 

3900 Hulun Buir PBS (Hailar) 1436-40* 30 Jan., 1357-1403, 1427-41* 31 Jan. Thanks to a tip from Bruce Churchill, H-B heard @ threshhold levels w/ CH chat, "traditional" CH songs, & a radio drama starting around

1430-40v* when it's cut off abruptly..if any pips @ 1400, i missed them.

 

3945 R. Vanuatu 1432-1447+ 25 Jan. Thanks to a tip from Ron Howard, RV heard w/ segued EG pop/no anncts..signal poor @ best & unhrd subsequent days until 2 Feb @ 1458+ with same abyssal signal.

 

3985 CNR2 (Geermu)/Echo of Hope (Hwaseong) 1501+ 2 Feb. Finally got a clear // for CNR2 (6065/6155/7335), always well under the S. Korean & inaudible when the NK roaring jammer opens up (which it did @ 1503 today..)

 

4850 XPBS (Urumqi) 1430-1500+ 25 Jan. Looking for AIR-Kohima possibly on for the eve of President's Day, but only Xinjiang in Kazakh w/ fair signal..1 pip @ :30 & 2 @ :00 (unless i missed a couple, which could happen)

 

6050 Salam FM (via RTM-Kajang) 1511-21* 2 Feb. Nice to hear S-FM running fairly late (for them) w/ Qur'an recitations/commentary, jingles, "Radio Salam FM" IDs, email addr. for Salam FM & what sounded like mention of "Voice of Islam" to begin a short promo-sounding chat about Islam in Malaysia.

 

6070 CFRX 0110-0140 31 Jan. Sitting @ the beach, watching the sunset & enjoying fair reception of "NewsTalk 10-10"--nice way to end January..e-mail rpt off to Steve Canney for some more "e-wall paper".

 

7185.77 Myanma Radio [non-log] 1355, 1446 31 Jan., 1456 2 Feb. MR missing @ least a couple days (& apparently didn't slide back to nominal 7200.1, either)..MR did stay on 'til 1600* on 30 Jan., so perhaps the xmtr is "resting".

 

11740 AIR (Panaji) 1519-30* 28 Jan. Pashto programming 'til :28, then instead of closing, went into EG w/ AIR ID, also heard 1450-1528* 29 Jan. s/off promptly after local tune..2 Feb. also running late after Pashto service w/ EG news/sports until 1532*..mixing with CNR2 (Lingshi).

 

cheers from the beach..

 

Dan

WB6FJD

 

 

 

 


Re: Warning-- Not All Tecsun PL-310's are Created Equal

m_a_schuster
 

Quality creep is a problem well-known to businesses that contract out their manufacturing to Chinese manufacturing. Unfortunately it seems to happen with Chinese brands too. The factory issues an attractive price for production and months late, when everyone has gotten complacent, starts cutitng corners in an effort to recoup the profits that they lost by giving the original lowball bid.

 

See "Poorly Made In China" by Paul Midler - an eye-opening account from an American who spent years in China acting as a kind of middleman between US companies and Chinese factories.

 


http://www.amazon.com/Poorly-Made-China-Insiders-Production/dp/0470928077

 

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