Monthly Archives: January 2014

Listening to beHAVior Night on the Elecraft KX3 QRP transceiver

The Elecraft KX3 transceiver tuned to 7490 kHz

Last year, I reviewed the Elecraft KX3 transceiver as a fantastic radio to consider if you’re an amateur radio operator who also happens to love SWLing.

Tonight, I used my KX3 to tune in one of my favorite weekly programs: beHAVior Night, a shortwave radio show, relayed by WBCQ, which showcases music from the first four decades of the 20th Century.

What’s so pleasant about the KX3 is the robust AM audio it delivers, even though its AM filtering is limited to a maximum of 4.2 kHz in width. That’s a very narrow width, by SWLing standards, but the audio sounds wider.

Listen for yourself: click here to download a recording of beHAVior Night made with the Elecraft KX3 (via my Zoom H2N digital recorder) or simply listen via the embedded player below:

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Shortwave Radio Recordings: Radio Station of Macedonia (VOG)


For your listening pleasure: 1 hour 29 minutes of The Radio Station of Macedonia (formerly Voice of Greece). This broadcast was recorded on January 28, 2014 around 1:50 UTC on 9,420 kHz.

During much of the month of December (2013), the Avlis transmitter on 9,420 kHz was off line. Since its return, modulation (as you’ll here) is not quite as good as before. Still, the signal is strong and I’m happy it’s active, even though purely a relay of ERT 3, the Radio Station of Macedonia.

Click here to download the recording as an MP3, or simply listen via the embedded player below:

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The ShouYu SY-DP-330: a retro, x-bass shortwave radio


The Professor recently sent me a link to the ShouYu SY-DP-330–stating it must be the “big brother” of the ShouYu SY-X5. Indeed it is! The DP-330 sports all of the features found in the SY-X5. It is very large in comparison, though, and runs on four D batteries. The DP-330 even comes with a remote control–most likely for the built-in MP3 player.

On a side note, the DP-330 is in the only shortwave radio advert I’ve ever seen that also features a giant mega-mechanical monster robot. Classy!

Do any readers have the DP-330? Please share your comments.

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Video: Build a radio in less than one minute

DIY-Radio(Source: Southgate ARC)

“Due to the numerous requests from his Build-a-radio-in-5-minutes, radio amateur Tommy Helgevold OZ4KID decided to make a better video with explanations on how to make a radio like this

He also decided to beat his old challenge as well…

…so without further ado, I present to you – How to build a radio in less than 1 minute, can you build it?

There’s even a schematic in the end of the video + an animated version of the entire breadboard setup.

Thanks for watching, & enjoy.

Watch Build a radio in less than 1 minute”

Click here to view on YouTube.

While less detailed, you can also view OZ4KID’s DIY Radio in less than 5 minutes by clicking here or viewing via the embedded video below:

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HFCC Conference: “Shortwave remains essential”

ABU-logo(Source: Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

“Short wave will continue to be an important part of broadcasting, a coordinating conference hosted by the ABU in Kuala Lumpur has been told.

The 10th Global Shortwave Co-ordination Conference of the High Frequency Coordination Conference (HFCC) with the ABU and the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU) from 20-24 January 2014 is part of the regular twice-yearly seasonal management of shortwave frequencies around the globe to coordinate usage and minimise interference.

Mr Bassil Zoubi, Head of Transmission at ASBU, said: “Shortwave programs will continue to be vital in addressing and communicating with some important parts of the world, especially with Internet penetration in the Arab countries around 34% while in some other parts of the worlds it is less than 10%.”

He said the ASBU had adopted T-DAB+ as a delivery platform for regional audio broadcasting, though the union continued to support [shortwave] DRM as a important delivery medium for international as well as national coverage, which was why the ASBU was calling for a universal radio chipset.

HFCC Chairman Mr Oldrich Cip said shortwave radio was important for travellers and isolated people, and it reached across the digital divide to the most disadvantaged and marginalised societies.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies had underlined this role of wireless radio in the 2013 World Disaster Report.

“It said that marginalised populations may not have the money or the knowledge to take advantage of the digital revolution,” Mr Cip said. “The report has noted that with only six per cent of people in low-income countries using the Internet in 2011, the digital divide was still stark and therefore access to low cost media technology was really the key.”

He also urged the conference that effort was needed to ensure that terrestrial broadcasting was part of the framework of the Global Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction.

ABU Director of technology Dr Amal Punchihewa reiterated the importance of ensuring there were mechanisms in place to deliver information technology to the most needy and vulnerable populations around the globe.

“The ABU will continue to work with our partners to ensure this technology will survive and thrive for the benefit of the population, in times of crisis, in areas of isolation and at the most vulnerable times,’ he said.

Mr Gary Stanley, Rapporteur of the HFCC Steering Board, thanked the ABU for hosting the conference and said shortwave radio was still very important for disseminating news and information to regions where Internet penetration was low and other ways of receiving international media were limited.”

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Jonathan Marks on what went wrong with shortwave

radio_vaticanaCheck out Jonathan Mark’s blog Critical Distance for his take on why many shortwave broadcasters have failed over the years.

Hint: the same is true for any broadcaster regardless of delivery medium–content is king.

Click here to read the full post.

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NASWA Details its 27th Annual Winter SWL Fest Program

David Goren hosts the annual Shortwave Shindig

David Goren of hosts the annual Shortwave Shindig–just one of the unique programs you’ll find at the Winter SWL Festival

For those of you readers who often feel you’re alone in your enthusiasm for radio, I highly encourage you to attend the NASWA-sponsored Winter SWL Festival in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania this year. This will be my sixth year attending, and I have eagerly awaited the arrival of the ‘Fest.  It is jam-packed with radio-related information and forums (indeed, yours truly will present again this year) and attended by many radio kindred spirits.

If you register early, By February 1, you’ll not only save a little money, but you’ll be entered to win a portable shortwave radio in a special raffle.  Exclusive hotel rates are also available to fest attendees.

Want to know what the SWLfest is like?  read the outline of the 2014 Winter SWL Festival below and check out this overview from last year:

(Source: NASWA press release)

NASWA, the North American Shortwave Association, has announced preliminary program details for its 27th Annual Winter SWL Festival to be held at the Doubletree Suites Hotel in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania on March 14 and 15, 2014.

The Winter SWL Fest is the largest and longest-running annual meeting of shortwave radio enthusiasts and hobbyists in the Western Hemisphere. Beyond the opportunity to renew old friendships and make new contacts, the conference serves as a forum for discussion of radio-related matters of interest and import to the attendees, which have numbered in excess of 200 in some recent years.

This year’s program of forums features two presentations by Australian Mark Fahey, who has travelled North Korea extensively in recent years. Over four successive trips to each province of the country, he has smuggled in and out monitoring and recording equipment enabling the capture and analysis of hundreds of hours of domestic radio and television broadcasting.

Scheduled for successive afternoons on Friday and Saturday, Behind the Curtain: North Korean Broadcasting and Propaganda, will extensively discuss and feature audio and video examples of North Korean internal and external broadcasting, international and clandestine broadcasters that manage to penetrate through the regime’s jamming, as well as descriptions and photographs of the media infrastructure used by the North Korean regime as the prime instrument of control over the population.

In addition to the ever-popular annual forums on scanning and unlicensed broadcasting (otherwise known as pirate radio), the 2014 Fest program also will feature the following sessions and presenters (subject to revision):

Radio Broadcasting: The Earliest Years – Dr. Harold Cones
Navigating a Future for the Radio Hobby – Sheldon Harvey, President of the Canadian International DX Club
Internet Radio 2.0 – Rob DeSantos
A Practical Guide to Loop Antennas – Jef Eichner
Developing a Shortwave Radio Archive – Thomas Witherspoon, President of Ears to Our World
Whatever Happened to Digital Radio? – Mark Phillips
Ionosounders and Other Real Time Propagation Aids – Tracy Wood
Ham Radio Tools for SWLs – Skip Arey

There’s also David Goren’s Friday night Shortwave Shindig radio studio party, as well as brief talks by Paul Ladd on World Christian Broadcasting’s shortwave transmitter projects, Allen Loudell of WDEL radio on trends in U.S. commercial radio, especially news/talk radio; and Sheldon Harvey’s annual tribute to those who departed us for a “higher station” over the last year. Not to mention: the Saturday night banquet and Grande Raffle!

Why not join us at the 27th Annual Winter SWL Fest? Details on location, registration, meals and lodging are available from the official web site:

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