Category Archives: Shortwave Radio

eBay: Galaxy R-530 Communications Receiver & Speaker

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Rob G, who shares a link to this rare Galaxy R-530 receiver and speaker on eBay:

Click here to view on eBay.

The R-530 is certainly a handsome receiver. FYI: the last time we posted one of these from eBay, the final price was $470 shipped, but this particular listing also includes the SC-530 matching speaker.

Earlier this year, when an R-530 appeared on eBay, our resident rare receiver guru, Dan Robinson, chimed in with the following:

Some observations on this. The R-530, and military version R-1530, were considered fairly top of the line when they were made. They’re still among the rarer radios on the used market, though not the rarest. The R-1530 is not seen often.

On performance, these receivers were not on the same level as National HRO-500s, 51Js, and R-390s. This was made by Hy-Gain after all, which was not top of the heap in receiving design.

However, the R-530/1530s are great looking pieces. Anyone considering these should make absolutely sure that the PLL circuit functions on all bands. Poor cosmetic condition is a tipoff that the radio had a hard life.

Are there any Post readers own and use an R-530 of R-1530? Please comment!

Shortwave Radiogram begins June 24-25, 2017

(Source: Shortwave Radiogram via Tom Ally)

Shortwave Radiogram begins 24-25 June 2017

The Shortwave Radiogram transmission schedule:

Sunday 0600-0630 UTC 7730 kHz

Sunday 2030-2100 UTC 11580 kHz

Sunday 2330-2400 UTC 11580 kHz

All via WRMI in Florida

Great to see that Kim Elliott isn’t skipping a beat moving from the VOA Radiogram to the Shortwave Radiogram in his retirement!  Let’s support him by tuning in!

Click here to visit the new Shortwave Radiogram website.

Help record the 2017 BBC Antarctic Midwinter Broadcast today!

Every year, the BBC broadcasts a special program to the scientists and support staff in the British Antarctic Survey Team. The BBC plays music requests and sends special messages to the small team of 40+ located at various Antarctic research stations. Each year, the thirty minute show is guaranteed to be quirky, nostalgic, and certainly a DX-worthy catch!

After successful listener events from years past, I’m calling on all SWLing Post readers and shortwave radio listeners to make a short recording (say, 30-60 seconds) of the BBC Antarctic Midwinter Broadcast today and share it here at the Post (frequencies and time below).

The recording can be audio-only, or even a video taken from any recording device or smart phone. It would be helpful to have a description and/or photo of your listening environment and location, if possible.

If you submit your recording to me, I will post it here on the SWLing Post–and insure that the British Antarctic Survey receives the post, too.  The recordings will be arranged by geographic location.

Frequencies

Please note that the broadcast begins at 2130 UTC on June 21, 2017. The following frequencies are based on the test transmissions last week and info published by Martin Goulding and Mauno Ritola (thank you, guys!):

From ASCENSION

7360 kHz250 kW / 207 deg to Antarctica

From DHABAYYA

6035 kHz250 kW / 203 deg to Antarctica

From WOOFFERTON

5985 kHz300 kW / 184 deg to Antarctica

I’m sure there will be live reports in the SWLing Post chat room during the broadcast.  Please sign in and share your report as well!

I hope I’ll be able to receive the broadcast this year–I’m traveling again in Québec, but will have my trusty Sony ICF-SW100 and Elecraft KX2 in tow.

Listening for the Midwinter test transmissions last week with the Elecraft KX2.

I’ll plan to set up at the same listening spot I did last year.

The Midwinter broadcast is one of my favorite programs of the year. I suppose, in part, this is because it happens on June 21–the Summer/Winter solstice–which also happens to be my birthday! Woo hoo!

Future of ABC Shortwave Service: Nigel Participates in Senate Committee Hearing

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Nigel Holmes–formerly of Radio Australia–for the following update regarding Nick Xenophon’s bill to resume ABC shortwave services:

Last Friday I travelled to Canberra and fronted the Senate Committee hearing testimony on the matter of HF broadcasting & Senator Xenophon’s Bill to compel ABC to resume HF domestically & for RA. I was grilled like a breakfast kipper. It went well.

Another witness was Graeme Dobell, a legendary radio & print journalist who has travelled & worked all over the Pacific region. Graeme has written some good articles on the current subject. See here:

https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/abc-gets-wrong-south-pacific-service/ and here

https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/smart-stuff-shortwave-south-pacific/

Interestingly another ex-RA journalist & RA senior executive Geoff Heriot wrote a recent piece critical of ABCs degradation of RA specialist programming. See here:

The crowded Pacific: re-considering the sharp edge of broadcasting’s soft power

Thank you, Nigel. We appreciate your updates and are certainly thankful that you have been representing the interests of those who believe in ABC maintaining a presence on shortwave.

David seeks a feature-packed “Swiss Army Knife” portable

The CC Skywave

Many thanks to SWLing Post reader, David, who writes with the following inquiry:

I really enjoy the SWLing site. It’s great and you guys have such good reviews and information!

I’m looking for a radio and one thing I have not seen on the site is a “features” type breakdown when you could limit the radios by the features you’re looking for. Maybe I missed it???

I’m looking for a portable radio (option to run on batteries, rechargeable, etc.) that has SW/AM/FM and the NOAA bands (perk if it has SAME) and has an Aux In so I can play music from my phone/whatever on it.

This will be a radio that I can take camping, to parks, have in the car for trips, gatherings, etc. I’d like it to have enough speaker that music is enjoyable, but not such a large form factor that it’s impossible/silly to lug around when needed.

Does such a thing exist!? Any recommendations? Thanks so much.

Good questions, David! I like your suggestion about a master feature list for comparing portables. If I have the time someday, I might try to put something like this together (else, perhaps, a Post contributor can volunteer for the job?).

To answer your question…

You’re certainly looking for a “Swiss Army Knife” of a radio. The only model that comes to mind is the C.Crane CC Skywave. I published a full review of the Skywave a couple years ago and can whole-heartedly recommend it. (Click here to browse our archive of Skywave posts.)

The C.Crane CC Skywave

The Skywave ticks every box on your feature list–it is even capable of SAME weather alerts! It’s also an excellent performer and my favorite compact travel radio that’s currently in production.

The only item missing on the Skywave is an audio AUX-in port, but I can’t think of any other radio on the market that comes closer to meeting your wish list than the Skywave.

SWLing Post readers: Perhaps you can help? Please comment if you can recommend a portable that meets all of David’s criteria. I may very well have overlooked a model. Obviously, the two features that make this search more challenging are weather radio and an an AUX-in port. Please comment with your suggestions!