Date   

Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul S. in CT
 

Over the years I've had bad luck with the Ni-MH batteries. Some radios just don't like them, and the batteries themselves are as fragile as glass. My tub of 60 alkaline AA's cost $20, or about 67c for the two needed in the R9012 or R911 in the house.

Best of listening with your choices

Paul S. in CT FN31nl


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks for the detailed reply.

That is some amazing battery life, I use some 2000mAh recharbales which are sold at our local supermarket, at $5.60 for 4 AA or AAA's, it is amazing how long these last, even if I replace them once a year, I am still miles in front.

I have settled on the Teac PR130 and Digitech AR-1733, I might look at adding to this in the future.

On Sat, Oct 10, 2020 at 11:17 AM Paul S. in CT <dxrx@...> wrote:
Yes, that 990x is the new version. At that price and likewise for the H501 its a MAJOR dissapointment.
/MHO

1.) In the meantime, my PL-330 arrived this afternoon. Set up and running without incident. AM/SW/FM, and USB/LSB function checked... all as advertised. Noted that the 1kHz offset on AM removes the soft-mute. SSB with the 0.01kHz (10Hz) tuning increments does function on AM-BCB. Minor nitpik is that one should tune 1kHz low for USB as the radio ADDS 1kHz to the receiver. Likewise, the opposite occurs using LSB.

Buttons a bit small, but have that nice indent function sadly lacking on the ATS-405. If you don't need the SSB or "Sync", I'd stick with the PL-310/380.

2.) I don't know the why for this, but since I bought the R9012 radio, I've noticed an increase in battery life. I believe this is a combination of using the Tecsun A200 passive loop, and an improvement of my standard-use Rayovac AA alkalines. Would you belive 550+ hours continuous?

Using the loop improved life from just over 400 hrs average to 500 hours. And I think the new tub of batterries 'high energy' with date code of early 2029 improved the time more. The most recent pair of AA's could operate the radio down to 0.94V (1.88V total). All of my previous batteries would quit at 1.05V (total 2.10V).  This last pair of new batteries went 608 hours continuous.

So in closing there are some new tricks here that may influence a decision. For about US$45 one gets either a PL310/380 or a R9012 + A200 loop. For AM-BCB this looks like a coinflip, but the PL-310 really excels at SW and FM. And the R9012/loop gets one emergency radio type life from a pair of AA's. If one needs SSB theres the Tecsun PL-365 or this PL330 in the US$70-80 range.

Paul S. in CT FN31nl

PS: that soft mute question... As far as I know its an Automatic Gain Control function that amplifies the strongest 10db of signal, and reduces lower-powered signals. The problem is that the atmospherics  may cause the signal to fade. This causes the soft-mute function to go from a loud signal to a barely audible signal (aka: pumping). Fading normally produces this effect, but soft-mute makes it worse. The SYNC function is supposed to help this by supplying the carrier wave that fades. The problem with THAT is the audio is part of that faded carrier. Many of us here and in the Amateur community are of the opinion that the audio frequencies are NOT affected by the fading, just the carrier. Providing a carrier will recover the audio. Yet another 'can of worms' so to say.







--
Paul


Re: Canadian AM Radio Stations

Paul S. in CT
 

Over at the World of Radio group Andy Reid is reporting that 1350 CJNL in B.C. has gone silent. Also 1040 CJMS has had its CRTC problems, and is on temp. authority. It has been ordered off-air a few times this year. You might want to try for this one while you can.

Regards
Paul S. in CT FN31nl


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul S. in CT
 

Yes, that 990x is the new version. At that price and likewise for the H501 its a MAJOR dissapointment.
/MHO

1.) In the meantime, my PL-330 arrived this afternoon. Set up and running without incident. AM/SW/FM, and USB/LSB function checked... all as advertised. Noted that the 1kHz offset on AM removes the soft-mute. SSB with the 0.01kHz (10Hz) tuning increments does function on AM-BCB. Minor nitpik is that one should tune 1kHz low for USB as the radio ADDS 1kHz to the receiver. Likewise, the opposite occurs using LSB.

Buttons a bit small, but have that nice indent function sadly lacking on the ATS-405. If you don't need the SSB or "Sync", I'd stick with the PL-310/380.

2.) I don't know the why for this, but since I bought the R9012 radio, I've noticed an increase in battery life. I believe this is a combination of using the Tecsun A200 passive loop, and an improvement of my standard-use Rayovac AA alkalines. Would you belive 550+ hours continuous?

Using the loop improved life from just over 400 hrs average to 500 hours. And I think the new tub of batterries 'high energy' with date code of early 2029 improved the time more. The most recent pair of AA's could operate the radio down to 0.94V (1.88V total). All of my previous batteries would quit at 1.05V (total 2.10V). This last pair of new batteries went 608 hours continuous.

So in closing there are some new tricks here that may influence a decision. For about US$45 one gets either a PL310/380 or a R9012 + A200 loop. For AM-BCB this looks like a coinflip, but the PL-310 really excels at SW and FM. And the R9012/loop gets one emergency radio type life from a pair of AA's. If one needs SSB theres the Tecsun PL-365 or this PL330 in the US$70-80 range.

Paul S. in CT FN31nl

PS: that soft mute question... As far as I know its an Automatic Gain Control function that amplifies the strongest 10db of signal, and reduces lower-powered signals. The problem is that the atmospherics may cause the signal to fade. This causes the soft-mute function to go from a loud signal to a barely audible signal (aka: pumping). Fading normally produces this effect, but soft-mute makes it worse. The SYNC function is supposed to help this by supplying the carrier wave that fades. The problem with THAT is the audio is part of that faded carrier. Many of us here and in the Amateur community are of the opinion that the audio frequencies are NOT affected by the fading, just the carrier. Providing a carrier will recover the audio. Yet another 'can of worms' so to say.


Re: Canadian AM Radio Stations

John Hudak
 

Here are some updates/corrections to the list.

530    CHLO    Not really Greek programming as such.  Mostly south Asian (Hindi, Punjabi) with just a bit of other ethnic programming on weekends or evenings.

960    CKNT    Mississauga, ON     0.7kW day     0.7kW night    Slogan is “Sauga 960 AM”

1220    CFAJ     St. Catharines, ON     Power unknown but probably 1kW at this time.  Came on earlier this year and has been in "testing" mode ever since. 
Format is "oldies" pop.  Signal seems a bit stronger at my location now so maybe they've bumped up the power.  I emailed them for more info but got no reply.

1280    CJRU    Toronto, ON     0.099kW day    0.099kW night     Ryerson University radio.

1350    CIRF    Brampton, ON     Power unknown but perhaps 1kW    ID is "R. Humsafar" with south Asian programming.  New station this year.

Cheers,
John   VE3CXB
Dundas, ON


Re: Article - Planning a portable ultralight radio dxing session

Paul Blundell
 

I have made some updates / changes to this, due to COVID-19 and some other changes. I have now also added a list of some good local DXing locations. 

https://ultralightradiodxing.blogspot.com/2020/01/planning-portable-ultralight-radio.html


Re: [odxa] KSEN 1150 kHz Shelby, MT DX Test [ CORRECTION ON TIME ]

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks for sharing this, while I have no chance of hearing this, it is really good to see the DXing hobby being so supported.

Paul

On Fri, Oct 9, 2020 at 10:50 AM Les Rayburn <les@...> wrote:
The Courtesy Program Committee of the National Radio Club and International Radio Club of America are pleased to announce another DX Test. This time from KSEN 1150 kHz in Shelby, Montana, near the Canadian border. KSEN plays an oldies format with the slogan, “Good as Gold.” They’re a fixture in the Shelby area but can be difficult to log outside of Big Sky country. 

This test for distant listeners is being done with the generous support of the owners of KSEN, station management, and Chief Engineer Todd Clark. We can also thank the efforts of CPC member Paul Walker who used his connections in broadcasting to arrange yet another test. 

The test will be on late night Saturday-Early Sunday morning on November 8, 2020 starting at 12:01AM Mountain Time for one hour. This is 0700-0800 UTC so it may be tough to log in Europe. 

Test will be at the daytime power of 10,000 watts, but we are not yet certain about which antenna pattern may be available for the test. 
Todd is attempting to arrange a change to the ND pattern, but may be limited to the night pattern which favors the North and South, with nulls towards E-W. 

KSEN AM Coverage Map


Test will consist of voice announcements, Morse Code ID’s, sweep tones, off-hook telephone sounders, etc. The station has a small staff, so they have asked the CPC Committee to handle reception reports and verifications. Verifications will be by e-mail only. A specially designed QSL card in Adobe PDF format will be sent to successful reports. 

The CPC prefers audio recordings in .MP3 or .WAV format. These should be e-mailed to: les@...

Put this on your calendar, and don’t miss the chance to log a great station in Northern Montana. Thanks again to CE Todd Clark and Paul Walker for this great DX Test. 




73,

Les Rayburn, N1LF
121 Mayfair Park
Maylene, AL 35114
EM63nf

NRC & IRCA Courtesy Program Committee Chairman
Member WTFDA, MWC

Perseus SDR, Elad FDM-S2 SDR, AirSpy + Discovery, SDRPlay RSP-2 Pro, Sony XDR-F1HD [XDR Guy Modified], Dennon TU-1500RD, Sangean HDT-1X, Ray Dees RDS Decoders, Korner 9.2 Antenna, FM-6 Antenna, Kitz Technologies KT-501 Pre-amps, Quantum Phaser, Wellbrook ALA1530 Loop, Wellbrook Flag, Clifton Labs Active Whip. 

“Nothing but blues and Elvis, and somebody else’s favorite song…” 



--
Paul


[odxa] KSEN 1150 kHz Shelby, MT DX Test [ CORRECTION ON TIME ]

Les Rayburn
 

The Courtesy Program Committee of the National Radio Club and International Radio Club of America are pleased to announce another DX Test. This time from KSEN 1150 kHz in Shelby, Montana, near the Canadian border. KSEN plays an oldies format with the slogan, “Good as Gold.” They’re a fixture in the Shelby area but can be difficult to log outside of Big Sky country. 

This test for distant listeners is being done with the generous support of the owners of KSEN, station management, and Chief Engineer Todd Clark. We can also thank the efforts of CPC member Paul Walker who used his connections in broadcasting to arrange yet another test. 

The test will be on late night Saturday-Early Sunday morning on November 8, 2020 starting at 12:01AM Mountain Time for one hour. This is 0700-0800 UTC so it may be tough to log in Europe. 

Test will be at the daytime power of 10,000 watts, but we are not yet certain about which antenna pattern may be available for the test. 
Todd is attempting to arrange a change to the ND pattern, but may be limited to the night pattern which favors the North and South, with nulls towards E-W. 

KSEN AM Coverage Map


Test will consist of voice announcements, Morse Code ID’s, sweep tones, off-hook telephone sounders, etc. The station has a small staff, so they have asked the CPC Committee to handle reception reports and verifications. Verifications will be by e-mail only. A specially designed QSL card in Adobe PDF format will be sent to successful reports. 

The CPC prefers audio recordings in .MP3 or .WAV format. These should be e-mailed to: les@...

Put this on your calendar, and don’t miss the chance to log a great station in Northern Montana. Thanks again to CE Todd Clark and Paul Walker for this great DX Test. 




73,

Les Rayburn, N1LF
121 Mayfair Park
Maylene, AL 35114
EM63nf

NRC & IRCA Courtesy Program Committee Chairman
Member WTFDA, MWC

Perseus SDR, Elad FDM-S2 SDR, AirSpy + Discovery, SDRPlay RSP-2 Pro, Sony XDR-F1HD [XDR Guy Modified], Dennon TU-1500RD, Sangean HDT-1X, Ray Dees RDS Decoders, Korner 9.2 Antenna, FM-6 Antenna, Kitz Technologies KT-501 Pre-amps, Quantum Phaser, Wellbrook ALA1530 Loop, Wellbrook Flag, Clifton Labs Active Whip. 

“Nothing but blues and Elvis, and somebody else’s favorite song…” 


Australian AM Radio History

Paul Blundell
 

Hi all,

I have recently come across this website which has some really good information.

https://austamradiohistory.com/

Paul
https://ultralightradiodxing.blogspot.com/


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

David Smith
 

I’ve had a Tecsun PL-990x for just over a week and the Sync is disappointing on weak signals.

73 David


Re: Canadian AM Radio Stations

Russ Edmunds
 

The topaz list includes Canadian stations which are licensed but silent as it is based on FCC data which includes these as the allocations are still treaty-protected.

Russ Edmunds

WB2BJH

Blue Bell, PA

Grid FN20id


From: main@UltralightDX.groups.io <main@UltralightDX.groups.io> on behalf of Peter Laws via groups.io <plaws0@...>
Sent: Wednesday, October 7, 2020 9:39 PM
To: main@ultralightdx.groups.io <main@ultralightdx.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [UltralightDX] Canadian AM Radio Stations
 
Several listed for Montreal are silent; some for a while, some recently.

Sad.

On Wed, Oct 7, 2020 at 7:36 PM Paul S. in CT <dxrx@...> wrote:
>
> The attatchment provides a list of the 156 known operating AM Radio Stations in Canada. Too big a list to post. This info was kindly provided by the folks at topazdesigns.com  I assembled and brought to pdf format.
>
> Regards
> Paul S. in CT FN31nl
>
>
>
>
>


--
Peter Laws | N5UWY | plaws plaws net | Travel by Train!






Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Rémy Friess
 


Le 07/10/2020 à 20:17, Paul S. in CT a écrit :
I've owned both the PL-310 and the G6. Not as good as larger radios, (Superradio 2 or Grundig G5/Degen 1103) but portability for travel is great. The PL-310 can be offset 1kHz to stop the soft mute effect.

What exactly do you call soft mute ?

Rémy.


Re: Canadian AM Radio Stations

Peter Laws
 

Several listed for Montreal are silent; some for a while, some recently.

Sad.

On Wed, Oct 7, 2020 at 7:36 PM Paul S. in CT <dxrx@am3radio.com> wrote:

The attatchment provides a list of the 156 known operating AM Radio Stations in Canada. Too big a list to post. This info was kindly provided by the folks at topazdesigns.com I assembled and brought to pdf format.

Regards
Paul S. in CT FN31nl




--
Peter Laws | N5UWY | plaws plaws net | Travel by Train!


Canadian AM Radio Stations

Paul S. in CT
 

The attatchment provides a list of the 156 known operating AM Radio Stations in Canada. Too big a list to post. This info was kindly provided by the folks at topazdesigns.com I assembled and brought to pdf format.

Regards
Paul S. in CT FN31nl


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Gregory Mosher
 

About the PL330  and SYNC – I’d wait for the reviews before pulling the trigger.  The PL-990x export version was just released, it’s had solid reviews except for SYNC.  I recently bought a China market Tecsun H-501 and frankly, it’s a nice radio – solid performer, however SYNC sucks – in my mind, not useable. However, SSB on the H-501 is solid – works well.  All three of these radios had same intro date and similar availability date – suggesting they were probably developed together.  Also, reasonable to expect that if the SYNC implementation on 2 of the 3 new models are not stellar, that’s what you’re going to get with the 3rd.   Also – why would they have a poor SYNC implementation on their two flagship models and a good implementation of it on the least expensive of the three? 

I’m comparing the SYNC ability on the H-501 to that on the Eton E-1 – no comparison.  SSB capability though is similar between the two. 

BTW – I’ve had a Radiwow R-108 for just over a month now – solid little performer, not bad for ~ $50 (Amazon).   I’d rate it better than my early production Tecsun PL310.  Sharp nulls possible.  Probably as good as the non SSB Skywave – the R108 is purported to be a copy?

Regards,
Gregory


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul S. in CT
 

Sorry for the double-post... a few things came to mind.

1.) Analog ULDX Radio... IMHO Tecsun R-9012. US$20 and batteries (2AA) last over 400 hours continuous. I've done it many, many times (The R-911 also does this, but SW less good). Makes for an emergency radio.

PL-330...
2.) I am reading that the SYNC detection does not work well on the pre-export models (Chinese manual). But USB/LSB with 10Hz is the bee's knees.

3.) The rechargable BL-5c battery might only last 30-60 hours, get a spare and an external charger (eBay has them resonable $)

Regards
Paul S. in CT FN31nl


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul S. in CT
 

As far as the PL-330, I have one on order. Should arrive in the USA at my door by mid Nov. Review at swling.com. Pix and specs at ebay.

Without SSB... Tecsun PL-310
With SSB... Grundig G6/Skywave (both can overload, needs a DX switch)

I've owned both the PL-310 and the G6. Not as good as larger radios, (Superradio 2 or Grundig G5/Degen 1103) but portability for travel is great. The PL-310 can be offset 1kHz to stop the soft mute effect.

Regards
Paul S. in CT FN31nl


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul Blundell
 

What is the ETA on that?


On Wed, 7 Oct 2020, 20:39 Rémy Friess, <rfriess@...> wrote:

Maybe we ought to wait and see how the new Tecsun PL-330 performs. Might be an interesting set, especially since it has a sync detector.

Regards, Rémy.

Le 07/10/2020 à 08:51, Les Rayburn a écrit :
I’m not an ultralight expert, but do own several. Ounce for ounce, I think the CC Skywave is the best performer currently available-especially with the SSB reception capability. 

This is one of the most fun aspects of the hobby, so you’ll have lots of excitement without a huge investment. 

Welcome back! 


73,

Les Rayburn, N1LF
121 Mayfair Park
Maylene, AL 35114
EM63nf

NRC & IRCA Courtesy Program Committee Chairman
Member WTFDA, MWC

Perseus SDR, Elad FDM-S2 SDR, AirSpy + Discovery, SDRPlay RSP-2 Pro, Sony XDR-F1HD [XDR Guy Modified], Dennon TU-1500RD, Sangean HDT-1X, Ray Dees RDS Decoders, Korner 9.2 Antenna, FM-6 Antenna, Kitz Technologies KT-501 Pre-amps, Quantum Phaser, Wellbrook ALA1530 Loop, Wellbrook Flag, Clifton Labs Active Whip. 

“Nothing but blues and Elvis, and somebody else’s favorite song…” 

On Oct 6, 2020, at 6:15 PM, Paul Blundell <tanger32au@...> wrote:

Hi all.

I now have the time and money to get back in to the hobby more, what is the current "go to" Ultralight DXIng radio? I am keen to buy one and really focus on getting the most out of it.

Paul
https://ultralightradiodxing.blogspot.com/


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

Paul Blundell
 

Thanks. I will check it out. eBay the best source?


On Wed, 7 Oct 2020, 17:52 Les Rayburn, <les@...> wrote:
I’m not an ultralight expert, but do own several. Ounce for ounce, I think the CC Skywave is the best performer currently available-especially with the SSB reception capability. 

This is one of the most fun aspects of the hobby, so you’ll have lots of excitement without a huge investment. 

Welcome back! 


73,

Les Rayburn, N1LF
121 Mayfair Park
Maylene, AL 35114
EM63nf

NRC & IRCA Courtesy Program Committee Chairman
Member WTFDA, MWC

Perseus SDR, Elad FDM-S2 SDR, AirSpy + Discovery, SDRPlay RSP-2 Pro, Sony XDR-F1HD [XDR Guy Modified], Dennon TU-1500RD, Sangean HDT-1X, Ray Dees RDS Decoders, Korner 9.2 Antenna, FM-6 Antenna, Kitz Technologies KT-501 Pre-amps, Quantum Phaser, Wellbrook ALA1530 Loop, Wellbrook Flag, Clifton Labs Active Whip. 

“Nothing but blues and Elvis, and somebody else’s favorite song…” 

On Oct 6, 2020, at 6:15 PM, Paul Blundell <tanger32au@...> wrote:

Hi all.

I now have the time and money to get back in to the hobby more, what is the current "go to" Ultralight DXIng radio? I am keen to buy one and really focus on getting the most out of it.

Paul
https://ultralightradiodxing.blogspot.com/


Re: Current "best" UL DXing Radio

mediumwavedx
 

Great points, Les and Remy.
 
I would agree with Les that the CC Skywave is the best in my lot and I have quite a few Ultralights. One I don't have, the Radiwow R-108, apparently is a design copy of the CC Skywave and might have similar specs for much less the price (about $50 U.S.). The only problem I have with the CC Skywave is the tuning dial is jittery when slowly rotated, causing channels to jump either up or down. But this seems to be a general problem with the cheap encoders that are being used these days.
 
Over the summer here in North America I have bought quite a few of the cheap Chinese analog-tuned DSP Ultralights (using SiLabs 483x chips). Though I have found some can be quite sensitive (like the Sangean SR-35 and the ultra cheap Dreamsky Pocket Radio), the SiLabs tuning algorithm is still wonky and masks a lot of weaker adjacent channel signals. It becomes tedious for serious DXing. Selectivity is also pretty poor on these units.
 
I'm also awaiting the reports on the PL-330 when it comes out. It might be a winner.
 
Bill
RADIO-TIMETRAVELLER
https://radio-timetraveller.blogspot.com

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