Monthly Archives: November 2011

Shower powered radio

(Source: The Telegraph)

The man who helped turn the Wind-Up Radio into a global success in the 1990s has invented a radio that is powered by the motion of water flowing into a shower.

The H20 water-powered radio clips onto the water pipe that runs up to a shower head. Using micro turbine technology, the radio is powered by the water pressure running up a pipe.

[…]Tango hopes that the waterproof radio will enjoy the same success as the Wind-Up Radio. The H20 was invented by Vivian Black, a former director of Freeplay Energy Group, which helped turn Trevor Baylis’s Wind-UP Radio into a commercial success in the 1990s.

While shower-powered radio is certainly an inventive use of flowing water, I seriously doubt the technology will enjoy the overwhealming success of wind-up radio. Wind-up or crank-powered energy generation can be used pretty much anytime, anywhere.  It’s also a very appropriate technology for the developing world.

In situations where one lacks access to power, there will most likely be a lack of water. However, for those of us who love listening to radio in the shower, this may be worth the investment. (I do wonder if how “green” this product will be if it keeps you in the shower a bit longer.)

11 GB+ of digital pirate radio recordings

(Source: TextFiles.com via Radio Survivor)

Since the 1990s, a fellow named Sealord has been recording pirate radio broadcasts coming across shortwave bands. Without authorization, license, or any sort of oversight, all manner of folks have been broadcasting illegal but probably not overly immoral shows out into the air. This collection, which is over 11 gigabytes and counting, has hours and hours of radio broadcasts, crackling with the sound of distant voices shouting over static and electromagnetic corruption. With names like XYZ Digital Pirate, Wolverine Radio, Whispery ID, Thinking Man Radio, The Voice of the Last DJ…. you’re talking some strange and mysterious personalities out there.

Not only is this collection worth checking out, but the whole of archive.org is an amazing collection of similar digital archives. I have listened to some of Sealord’s collection in the past but never recognized the extent of the total anthology. What an amazing service to us in the radio community who believe in the importance of preserving the sounds of the shortwaves.

On that note, I humbly ask that if you ever record shortwave audio, please consider uploading the uncompressed file to archive.org so that your recording can be shared and properly archived.  I’ve certainly uploaded many hours of shortwave radio recordings on behalf of SWLing.com (though, nowhere near 11GB and counting!).

Berlusconi chased women, Monti chased DX

Mario Monti, Prime Minister of Italy

(Source: Kim Elliott via ABC)

Italy’s Mario Monti, the sober economist nominated to replace the larger-than-life Silvio Berlusconi, is a former European commissioner who is markedly different from the outgoing premier.

[…]Asked about any acts of rebellion in his youth, he conceded that there really were none and said he just studied hard, enjoyed cycling and was passionate about listening to foreign news on his short-wave radio.

Read the full article here. As Kim Elliott pointed out, it’s a shame he became prime minister four years after Italian public broadcaster RAI abandoned its extensive international shortwave broadcast schedule.

C.Crane offers Black Friday pricing

C.Crane has “Black Friday” pricing on two of their radios:

They are selling one of my favorites for audio fidelity, the CCRadio-SW, for $124.95 (reg. $149.95) and a limited stock of refurbished units for $79.95.

They’re also selling their CCRadio-SWP, a small pocket radio with excellent MW and notable shortwave performance for $44.95 (reg. $49.95) with a limited stock of refurbished (“orphan”) units for $39.95.

According to their promotional email, prices are good through November 26th at 12:00 PM.