Monthly Archives: January 2014

Running SoniqWare SG-1 on a Windows PC

sg1-gui-fordocRecently, I posted a video showing how @LondonShortwave uses the GarageBand plugin, SoniqWare SG-1, for noise reduction. Since GarageBand is an Apple application, I didn’t believe SoniqWare SG-1 would work on a Windows PC, but SWLing Post reader Jeff Benedict (KB7AIL) writes:

“I run Mac OSX and GarageBand so it’s not really a concern of mine but, according to the documentation, SG-1 is compatible with Windows sound processing applications.
Here’s the documentation from SoniqWare:

p. 17

System Requirements
• Microsoft Windows XP/Vista,
• Mac OS X 10.5/10.6,
• 512 MB RAM,
• VST, VST3, or AU compatible host software

An explanation of the VST and a list of applications for Windows which are compatable with VST plug-ins:

Of course, this comes with the caveat that I do not run any version of Windows or any of these sound processing applications so YMMV.

A short explanation of the different formats for sound processing plug-ins:

Many thanks, Jeff, for the tip!

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Global Tuners for Android smart phones

GlobalTunersAppMany thanks to Chris Freitas, who informed me that the excellent Global Tuners website, has produced an app for Android-based smart phones. With this app and a free Global Tuners account, your smart phone can remotely control a number of  receivers across the globe.

Best of all?  It’s free!

Click here to view Global Tuners in Google Play.

You won’t find the app through categorical searches via your phone–you must search for the term “Global Tuners” in the Google Play. Indeed, this app has been available since 2012, but none of my categorical searches had ever unearthed it.

To my knowledge, there is no Global Tuners app for iPhones/iPads as of yet (iOS).

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Radio Romania International “broadcasts” to US phones

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SWLing Post reader, Mike Kitchen, kindly shared this message from Radio Romania International:

“Dear friends, you can listen to us on your mobile phone, in the US. Our programs in English are available live or on demand, at the following call-to-listen phone number: 716.274.2526. This incurs no extra charge and is the equivalent of making a standard mobile call in the US.”

I just tried the service and am happy to report that each time you call, the RRI English language service begins at the top of the hour. While not nearly as fun as listening over shortwave, it does make this Romanian broadcaster even more accessible within the US.

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Shortwave noise reduction via GarageBand plugin

sg1-gui-fordocMany thanks to @LondonShortwave, on Twitter, who made a video showing how to use a GarageBand plugin to filter noise out of shortwave audio in real time. He describes this on his YouTube channel:

“I recently discovered a Mac AudioUnit plugin called Soniqware SG-1 that allows real-time noise filtering based on a brief noise sample (sometimes referred to as the “noise profile” or the “noise fingerprint”). This video shows it being applied to shortwave radio signals, which I believe is a first, as I have been unable to find anyone else who has already done it. In a number of cases, it turns laborious DXing into armchair listening.

The antenna used in these experiments is a Wellbrook ALA1530SP-1 and is positioned indoors. More information is contained in the first few seconds of the video.”

Click here to watch the video on YouTube.

Note that GarageBand is an application only available on the Mac OS X platform. Fortunately, it comes free with every new Apple computer purchase. You can find the Soniqware SG-1 spectral noise gate plugin by clicking here.

Be sure to follow @LondonShortwave on Twitter:

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MT Express Archive now for sale


Monitoring Times is now selling an anthology DVD of all of the MT Express digital editions, from 1999-2013. It comes on one DVD-ROM and is viewed using the included Adobe Reader program. The complete DVD is searchable or you may open each issue individually. The price is $105.90 shipped.

Click here to view.

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Video: Ken operates his Hallicrafter S-120 for the first time

The Hallicrafters S-120

In response to our last post regarding Hallicrafters’ promotional 45 RPM record, Ken Carr comments:

“I got the entire promotional kit for the [Hallicrafters] S120 when I was a kid. My parents even bought the radio for me. I still have everything, including the record. How could you not want to get into SWL after listening to it?

My dad took an 8mm film of me using the new radio. I have since digitized it.”

Ken then kindly shared his video (which can also be viewed on YouTube):

Thanks for sharing, Ken! This stuff is priceless.

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The Amazing World of Short Wave Listening: Hallicrafters 45 RPM

(Source: WW2E on

(Source: WW2E on

SWLing Post reader, Michael Black, remembers the Hallicrafters 45 RPM promotional record in a comment:

All this talk of early listening, especially when it’s about the same period I joined in, reminds me of the Hallicrafter’s 45RPM record that was used as a promotional tool.  Send 25cents, get the record back, and hear what you could hear with a shortwave receiver.

I don’t think I ever had a copy.  But I did some searching, and it’s apparently available in multiple places on the internet.  I won’t add a link because I’m not sure which one would be most reliable.  But a search on “hallicrafter 45rpm” gave results.

One site pointed out that the average listener would not have been able to hear much of what was on the record.  But that too represents the image of the time.  My Hallicrafters S-120A had a horrible sliderule dial, but endless space to mark exotic places like “Antarctica” and things like “aeronautical mobile”.  The receiver was awful, you’d have a hard time hearing much other than the strongest of sw broadcast signals, but going into the hobby, some of that marketing was what made it exotic.  For those of us who were young at the time, it wasn’t just about this new world of shortwave, in some ways it was about “this new world” that was beyond our world that wasn’t much bigger than school.   Antarctica wasn’t just exotic because you might be able to hear it on shortwave, it was an exotic place to begin with.”

I took Michael’s advice and searched the term, “Hallicrafter 45RPM” and found this YouTube video. Enjoy:

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