On the topic of shortwave radios in automobiles, SWLing Post reader, Chris, writes:
“Seven years ago, I purchased a Sony Car Stereo with a Shortwave receiver from the Shortwave Store in Canada. It works remarkably well especially on those summer trips to Northern Wisconsin and Michigan when I can get away from the city noise. Last summer while driving from Chicago to Copper Harbor Michigan (a 10 hour drive) I listened to Radio Australia, Radio New Zealand, Radio Havana Cuba, Radio Exterior Espana and the BBC (Ascension). It certainly made a long drive more enjoyable.
Below is a video I took last night of a relatively weak signal of Radio Exterior Espana (due to local electrical noise and weather) then followed by a nice strong signal of Radio Romania. The signals were recorded next to Lake Michigan in Chicago.
If you can’t afford a BMW with a Shortwave receiver or you don’t have an appetite for a Smart Car you can always install a receiver easily found for sale on Ebay.”
Of course, the receiver is only as good as its antenna. Chris admits that, “the [radio] installation was a hassle and I had to install an aerial whip antenna (which required drilling).” Obviously, your investment in the whip antenna is paying off, Chris. I’m impressed.
SWLing Post reader, Bob, has a relative who works for BMW in the United States. Recently, Bob learned that some models of BMWs shipped to South Africa have a shortwave radio option. He followed up with this photo of the radio display [see above].
Wow, what a fab idea! Not only would I love to have a factory-installed shortwave radio in my car, but I must admit that I love the simple design of this digital radio dial: elegant, clean, and just a tad retro and sci-fi, all at once.
While visiting my friend, Vlado, this weekend, he showed me his thrift store find: a Sony ICF-2010 in very good condition`. The ‘2010 is a well-known portable amongst serious DXers, and is highly sought-after. Since this radio has not been in production for many years, used models routinely sell for a price in excess of $200 US. Parts radios sell for $50 US or more.
We suspect that the previous owner thought it stopped working. You see, when Vlado plugged in the AC power adapter, nothing happened.
But take note: there is a quirk, at least with some ICF-2010s–they will not power up, even with the AC adapter plugged in, if you don’t have AA batteries installed. Indeed, two AA cells are required for either DC or 120 VAC operation. Once Vlad put AAs in, the radio came to life.
How much did he pay for his Sony ICF-2010? Five dollars.
TecsunRadio.com has posted the new Degen DE1129 shortwave radio on their website. Though they have not yet posted pricing, it appears pre-orders are being taken.
The DE1129 looks like a decedent of the Degen DE1128 that has not exactly been a market success in North America. The DE1128 lacks medium wave (AM) 10kHz steps (spacing) that allows it to be useful in the North America AM broadcast market. It also lacks English as a selectible language on the display. (The Grundig G2 Reporter, however, does have the features and is, in essence, the North American version of the DE1128).
The published features/specs of the new DE1129 do not reveal if AM spacing or English language will be an issue in the DE1129. I will try to contact the manufacturer. Until then, I would keep this in mind if pre-ordering. UPDATE:The DE1129 does have 10kHz spacing.
UPDATE: Vimal points out pricing is $102 US/each with shipping.