CDNSE Newstar DR111 First Review

The DR111 DRM Radio (Photo: Chengdu NewStar Electronics)

Based on this initial review, it appears that the CDNSE Newstar DR111 is an improvement over the company’s last portable DRM radio, the DiWave.

(Source: DRMNA.info)

[T]he unit is quite sensitive. RNZI evenings at 17675kHz and 13730kHz can be received various places within my house with only the internal whip. REE at 9630kHz using an external ham vertical antenna was similar copy on Pappradio (with a slight edge given to the Pappradio.)

DRM Audio while adequate, seems narrow and compressed in comparison to DReaM on my PC. I verified this by switching A to B between the Newstar and the Pappradio with DReaM using my JBL headphones. I’m beginning to wonder if the DRM audio is being processed by the DSP, just like the analogue audio. The DSP in analogue is a tad too aggressive. A real bonus in analogue is the adjustable bandwidth (1-6kHz) however. That and the DSP make analogue quite enjoyable even in the crowded 49M (6MHz) band. I have been listening to BBC on 5875kHz in the early AM with armchair copy and great audio using only the whip (throughout the house).

Read full post here.

Could the DR111 DRM Radio be the portable we’ve been waiting for?

The DR111 DRM Radio (Photo: Chengdu NewStar Electronics)

One of the reasons DRM (Digital Radio Mondial) has struggled to gain global popularity is that there has yet to be a portable radio solution with universal appeal.

Perhaps the future Chengdu NewStar Electronics DR111 DRM Radio will change that? According to their website, the company is certainly setting out to make an affordable receiver that is simple to operate. Hopefully, CDNSE has learned from this radio’s predecessor; ergonomics, affordability and overall ability to receive and decode DRM signals are the keys to its success.

We have added the DR111 to our Shortwave Radio Index. Check back as we will post updates.

Modify a Realistic DX-394 for DRM

Do you have a Realistic DX-394? If so, you can modify it to become a DRM (Digital Radio Mondial) receiver. Simply follow these very well documented instructions.

Thanks to Mike on the DRMNA email list for bringing this cool mod to my attention.

Radio World looks into the future of digital shortwave radio

(Source: Radio World Online)

“DRM is not seen as a profitable line for the major manufacturers,” said Sennitt. “A few smaller manufacturers have produced DRM receivers, but the unit cost is still too high, and there simply aren’t enough DRM transmissions audible at any one location to stimulate consumer demand. It’s a classic chicken and egg situation — which comes first, the transmissions or the receivers? The broadcasters and the receiver manufacturers are each waiting for the other to move first.”

Read the full article at Radio World Online.

DRM: First Transmission for Southern Africa

(Source: DRM Consortium Press Release)

The DRM Consortium will make its first ever DRM transmissions for Southern Africa in French and English on October 11th on the occasion of the Digital Radio Conference organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) at the headquarters of the European Parliament in Brussels.

The two day conference will include two live studio discussions on the possibilities and future of digital radio from the multimedia radio studio of the European Parliament. The programmes aim to showcase multiplatform and distribution techniques in front of a studio audience of Digital Radio Conference delegates.

The live show in French from 1200-1300 GMT will be followed two hours later (1400-1500 GMT) by a Digital Radio Show in English with international participation including the chairpersons of the DRM and WorldDMB Consortia.

Both the French and English programmes will be carried live on DRM SW 21800 from Ascension Island in the Atlantic Ocean and should be heard in countries like South Africa, Angola, Zambia, Lesotho, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique. The English programme will also be carried at 1800 GMT into Southern Asia on DRM SW 12085, at the end of the daily regular BBC/DW transmission.

Ruxandra Obreja, DRM Chairperson, says: “This is an exciting and imaginative undertaking that will demonstrate practically, even if for a short while, to European MPs and radio enthusiasts at thousands of kilometres apart the capacity of DRM to cover huge areas with excellent audio quality programmes. We are grateful to the EBU for the opportunity to showcase, alongside other platforms, that part of DRM, the only standard for all bands below and above 30 MHz, that could offer so much to the radio lovers in Africa.”

Resources:

 

All India Radio on DRM track

As we’ve mentioned before, it appears AIR (All India Radio) may soon be a leader in digital radio in all forms, including shortwave. This, from the Deccan Herald:

The government plans to launch a 24-hour news broadcast channel of All India Radio (AIR) as part of its sweeping modernisation programme in the next five years.

AIR will also witness a complete digitisation of its studios, transmissions and connectivity across the country by 2017 according to plans by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. With a view to improving efficiency and broadcast quality, the government will replace old and obsolete equipment besides enhancing AIR’s infrastructure by refurbishing its studios.

[…]While the reach of the national channel is proposed to be extended to the whole of the country, the external services of the AIR will also be strengthened through digitalisation of shortwave transmitters.

Read the full article at the Deccan Herald. Thanks to @kaedotcom (Kim Elliot) for the tip!

 

New Digital Radio Mondiale channel for South Asia

(Source: BBC World Service International Publicity)

BBC World Service and Deutsche Welle (DW) are launching a new Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) digital radio channel for South Asia.

The channel will carry a four-hour daily broadcast that includes the best international programmes in English and Hindi from BBC World Service and Deutsche Welle. It will also bring to the audience all the advantages of DRM digital radio including near-FM quality audio, text messages, Journaline and an Electronic Programme Guide (EPG).

This joint initiative between BBC World Service and Deutsche Welle has been launched using two transmitters in the region and will cover much of South Asia. The signal covers the majority of the Indian sub-continent and may reach as far as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and other neighbouring countries.

The new transmission starts on 31 October 2010 and will be broadcast from 1400–1800 GMT each day. Listeners will find the new programme stream on 13590 and 5845 kHz (SW) and additionally on 1548 kHz (MW) between 1700–1800 GMT.

Ruxandra Obreja, DRM Chairman, says: “Digital radio is as much about technology as it is about content. Through DRM we hope to increase the digital radio offer to South Asia giving people access to audio and multimedia content, which should in turn convince manufacturers that digital radio brings something new worth investing in.”