Larry Magne, the publisher of Passort To World Band Radio, has reported that the 26th edition of their popular shortwave radio guide may not go to print. From their website:
As with any good recipe, a range of ingredients has to come together if a reference book is to succeed. Solid content is, of course, essential. But in recent months other considerations have had an increased bearing on the future of Passport to World Band Radio®.
So it is that the 26th Edition of Passport to World Band Radio® is being held in limbo. Despite this, for now we are continuing to maintain the WorldScan® database and uphold all proprietary material. Among other things, this should help allow for an orderly return to production, under IBS’ aegis or otherwise, should conditions allow.
For Passport® readers and our small team, alike, this is a seminal moment. After all, Passport to World Band Radio® goes back a quarter century and has had something like a million readers worldwide. But the future has its own rhythm that confounds prognostication. There may yet be more chapters to this story. Stay tuned.
This is sad news for the shortwave listening community. I have been a fan of this fine publication since the 1980’s and always have a copy handy on my radio shelf. There are other notable radio guides out there, but none so easy to use and so perfectly tailored for the newcomer to the hobby.
Since I review shortwave radios for SWLing.com, I’m always looking for great deals on popular portables. This summer, I’ve noticed several exceptional values and thought I’d share them with you. Note that many of these deals are for the North American market, but if these models are available in your part of the world, you’ll probably find bargains where you live, too.
Grundig G4000A Special
Universal Radio has a limited time offer on the Grundig G4000A. They’re selling this capable little radio for $99.99 and including a freeEton FR350 self-powered shortwave radio (a $59.95 value) and a Grundig AN200 indoor antenna ($29.95).
Wow. What a deal–possibly the best I’ve ever seen on a new shortwave portable. For those of you who don’t yet know, the Grundig G4000A is a classic little portable. It has very decent audio fidelity, good shortwave sensitivity, excellent SW coverage (1711 to 30000 kHz) and is a capable performer on FM and AM bands. It can also tune in SSB (Single Side Band) signals.
I am also quite familiar with the FR350, as it is one of the few self-powered radios (along with the FR200) that passed all of our rigorous tests for use with the classroom SW radio distribution project, Ears To Our World. (Kudos to Universal, by the way, as they are a big supporter of ETOW).
I have not used the Grundig AN200 AM broadcast antenna yet, but I have used similar antennas and must admit that they do improve AM reception. Great thing is, you don’t even need to hook this antenna up to your radio; just place it next to the radio and you’re ready for MW (AM broadcast band) DX.
Universal lists that this unique deal is available until the (updated) 30th of June 2010, or while supplies last.
Prices have been falling recently on the G5 as Grundig makes way for their new G3 Voyager.
The Grundig G5/Eton E5
The G5 has been a choice radio amongst SWLers who want portable performance, and, along with many other reviewers, I have given this radio high marks.
There are some good deals out there on the G5 as Eton makes way for the much anticipated G3 Voyager (see previous post). Keep in mind that the G5 used to sell for $160. Below, I have listed some authorized retailers that carry the G5, and their prices as of the date of this posting:
The Sony ICF-SW7600GR is a great choice for the beginner and experienced shortwave listener. It's portable, yet has the features and selectivity of a larger radio.
The Sony ICF SW7600GR
Many believe that Sony is slowly pulling out of the shortwave radio market. That may be, but they have made some highly sought after radios over the years. The ICF-SW7600GR is no exception (see my mini review here). What sets this radio apart from the competition (at least until the G3 hits the market) is synchronous selectable sideband, a feature which is effective at reducing fading distortion and adjacent-channel interference.
I’ve noticed that prices on the ICF-SW7600GR are starting to fall and supplies are dwindling at retailers. Here are a few that still carry this fine portable:
C. Crane offers two radios that I’m quite fond of–the CCRadio-SW tabletop/portable and the ultra-portable CCRadio-SWP. I reviewed both of these on SWLing.com.
Like many manufacturers, C. Crane sells products that they refurbish and clean, and then guarantee them. They refer to these units as Orphans. Having purchased from C. Crane in the past, I can say that I wouldn’t hesitate to buy an orphan radio from them. It can save you anywhere from $5 to $20 on one of their radios.
Pricing and availability vary, so check out their Orphan page before purchasing new.
Two more Grundig Specials from Universal Radio
Get a free Grundig FR350 with the new Sattelit 750 at Universal Radio.
UPDATED 20 July 2009:
Universal is now offering a free Grundig AN200 antenna with the purchase of the much awaited Grundig G3 Globe Traveler ($149.99) and a free Grundig FR350 self-powered shortwave radio with the purchase of the new Satellit 750 ($299.99). I believe these offers are exclusive to Universal Radio.