Stephan notes a few issues with his first production run Sangean ATS-909X2

Update: Please read this comment from Sangean America. It seems the receiver Stephan received was actually a pre-production model that shouldn’t have been sold to him. Sangean has replaced his radio with one from the first production run. 

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Stefan, who recently shared two descriptive comments about issues his new Sangean ATS-909X2 is exhibiting. I’ve edited both comments together below:

I purchased [my Sangean ATS-909X2] from Sangean Europe and I am totally disappointed. I know that my radio is from the first production batch and I really hope that Sangean will address the following issues:

1. When I switch from FM to MW/LW/SW, I lose reception completely on these bands. However, FM works as expected, regardless from which band I switch back to it. To restore reception on the affected bands, I have to turn off the radio for a few seconds.

[Stefan then provided the following update:] Note [in this audio clip example the] first time I had to restart the radio two times to restore reception.

2. Lots of tones across all the bands, except FM. In fact, every receivable station has at least a minor tone. I can’t judge if these tones are interferences coming from internal components, such as the display, or there are oscillators related. If you are interested I can record some audio samples. Video is not possible because I’m visually impaired.

[Stefan shared the following update:] I am pretty confident to say that most tones across the bands are not generated by internal components. There are some birdies here and there, especially when I touch the screen, but these are acceptable. I suspect that it is something wrong with signal demodulation. I can get that tone even on strong local stations, while the sensitivity is set to minimum.

[…]The environment where I made these recordings is very noisy, but I tried the radio outside and, even if reception is much better, that tone on the affected bands is always present.

Below [is an audio sample] demonstrating that annoying tone on MW (LW, SW and air band are also affected):

3. The following one is not so important: The upper part of the LW is totally deaf. I can’t receive anything above 300 kHz. Tried some non-directional beacons from the nearest airport, but no luck. I also tried to induce some interference from my mobile phone, but I can’t generate any noise. Very interesting…

4. Frequency calibration is off by 2 kHz. For example a station on 540 kHz sounds centered at 542.

5. I noticed a huge sensitivity drop on MW/LW (SW not tested yet) when the batteries reach the half of their capacity. I suspected that it was bad propagation, but tested this with another radio I have and turns out I was wrong. When batteries are full, the sensitivity is ok. When the batteries are a bit discharged, sensitivity on MW/LW begins to drop. I can admit that the sensitivity is correlated with battery voltage, but on this radio the dropping curve is unusually aggressive.

That’s all for now. This is not a review. These are my first personal observations on the new ATS 909×2. I think I should return the radio for a product exchange and try another unit after a few months or maybe even for a refund, I still have not decided yet.

Thanks so much, Stefan, for taking the time to share these notes with us.

I’ll admit that this is discouraging if these issues are present in all of the ATS-909X2 units from this production run. Your points 1 and 2 are big ones. I would not enjoy hearing those het-like tones in my received audio. It sounds like it’s ever-present in AM mode regardless of frequency. The drop-off in sensitivity when toggling FM? That’s also unacceptable. These bugs should have been discovered and addressed during Alpha/Beta testing which leads me to believe it could very well be an issue with the first production run (and lack of QC check before shipping).

Issue number 5 on your list is actually a criticism of the original ATS-909X as well.

Please keep us informed, Stefan, and thanks again. I know our contributor, Dan, has an ATS-909X2 on order in North America and I’m sure we’ll hear from him once he receives his unit.

Any other ATS-909X2 owners out there? Please feel free to comment.

Spread the radio love

35 thoughts on “Stephan notes a few issues with his first production run Sangean ATS-909X2

  1. Charlie Alexander

    I just received mine (from Amazon) late yesterday:
    Some notes on Bandwidth:
    I could not find this information anywhere, but it is on the box lip
    AM Bandwidths:6.0, 4.0, 3.0, 2.5 & 1.0
    SW Bandwidths (For AM mode ONLY) 4.0, 3.0, 2.5, 1.8, 1.0

    SADLY: There is only one bandwidth for SSB; my SWAG is 1.8 or 2.5 need more listening time to be sure)

    The Tuning knob has clicks/detents (I do NOT like that but I can get used to it)
    As others have found: The Audio level in SSB is a good bit lower than it is in AM.

    I think the I.F. Filters must have much better skirts (Shape factor) than those on the PL-880.

    I listen to UTE’s a lot and use ECSS tuning a lot, especially on a Receiver that does not have sync.
    With the audio drop in SSB and only one bandwidth on SSB (What the heck was Sangean thinking here)?
    I am not sure how this will go over with me.

    Frequency seems spot on.
    It ‘seems’ a little less sensitive than my PL-880 BUT it will hear anything the PL-880 does at least as well and sometimes better.

    It is easier to listen to than the PL-880 at least for me, it has a better sound not as much noise.

    Note: I use the Whip antenna on portables.

    It is a Beautiful Radio and a real pleasure to hold and use!

    More to follow I just rec’d it late yesterday and Conditions were the pits last night!

    Reply
  2. stefan

    Hi, folks!

    After three week-ends of extensive testing, I finalized an in-dept examination of my defective ATS-909X2. Again, keep in mind that this is a defective unit, confirmed by Sangean. I post my final thoughts on this particular device, because we can all use these observations as a reference in the future.
    I can confirm that on my particular unit the frequency calibration is off. To reproduce the issue, I tune to any shortwave station, for example 5010 kHZ, than I start playing with the up/down tuning buttons. When I go up to 5015 kHZ, I can still hear the station, but when I go down to 5005 the station disappears. I tried on many stations with the same result. I also tried to determine the offset value by tuning away up and down a few kHZ from the center of the received station. This experiment revealed that the displayed frequency is about 2 kHZ off. The display shows 5010 kHZ, but the actual received frequency is around 5008. A short audio sample is provided below:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1iqbW0WXcp2HU3WVyB2hu120ugbcQVsNc/view?usp=sharing

    There is an internally generated clicking sound on shortwave, in SSB mode. I can clearly hear it when using headphones. Is not loud, but it is there.
    The volume in SSB is much lower than in AM mode, but this was already mentioned here.
    Another issue in ssb is related to channel calibration. The two side bands are not well aligned. Sangean should provide an option to calibrate each channel individually. Again, audio sample below:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/197FrHnZuhVaGt-b7YsZOZYfS2kX3qIiw/view?usp=sharing

    Inconsistent fine tuning steps in SSB. When I fine tune in SSB, at every 1 kHZ interval there is a brief silence and a portion of about 20-30 hertz is skipped. Listen here:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-9lpAQyDO3rVXT2IIOPPKo_PjJTd6Rsw/view?usp=sharing

    Good news, the noise floor on shortwave is much lower than on any Tecsun radio.
    Sensitivity on shortwave is good, when I use fully charged batteries. When using the radio on the power supply, the sensitivity is apparently increased, but I am not sure. An interesting fact is that the power cable acts as an antenna on shortwave. I just partially plug in the power jack and the sensitivity is much better. The same result if I make the end of the power cable touch any other jack on the radio. This behavior can give me the fake impression that the radio is much more sensitive on the power supply. This is what I should test in different locations and conditions.
    There is a constant audible internally generated noise on shortwave, you can find demonstrations on Youtube.
    What I said previously about the sensitivity issue on longwave is not 100% correct. There is an interesting sensitivity curve between 300-519 kHZ. At around 300 kHZ the sensitivity begins to drop gradually until around 430 kHZ, then it starts to come back slowly at 450 kHZ. On 519 kHZ the sensitivity is really good.
    FM performance is excellent, but I propose an additional 40 kHZ filter setting. It is not too narrow, this value is present on the Sangean PR-D4W. I have experiences with older modified radios and I can tell you that the 65 kHZ filter on the 909X2 sounds like a good 110 kHZ filter on other modified FM receiver. Perhaps these DSP-based filters are a bit wider than the old traditional filters, even if they have the same specifications. I don’t know…
    A few words regarding the accessibility on this radio. I am happy to report that I can read the display, including frequency and the multi-functional menu using my iPhone’s camera and a free app called Seeing AI. It requires a bit of practice, but it is worth the effort and the time spent. I am able to set the clock and the alarm without sighted assistance and without any additional assistive technology. Is sufficient to know each key what it does and to have the beeps turned on.
    That is all for now. If you have other questions, or simply you want to talk about radios, or even if you are interested in my experience as a visually impaired DX-er, you can contact me at
    dogwavedx@gmail.com
    Best wishes!

    Reply
  3. Sangean America Inc.

    Sangean America would like to directly respond to Stephan’s comments about his experience with our new ATS-909X2. The unit Stephan reviewed was a pre-production model he purchased from our European office; it should have never been sold to him. We know it was a pre-production model because his unit did not have DAB which is used in Europe and will be featured on the European version of the ATS-909X2.
    Sangean America just received their first shipment of the new ATS-909X2 and have tested and confirmed that these units are free from defectives and are performing better than the original ATS-909X.
    We’ve reached out to Stephan and offered him to replace the unit he has with one from our new shipment.
    Rest assured if you’re interested in the ATS-909X2 you will be extremely pleased with its performance and new advanced features.
    Thank you,
    Sangean America

    Reply
    1. stefan

      Hello,

      Thanks for your answer. Unfortunately, I did not received any message from Sangean. I also checked the spam folder. I sent a mail to contact@sangean.com from my personal e-mail address. Anyway, thanks again for trying to get in touch with me!
      My final report on that defective unit is almost ready. It needs a bit o proofreading due to my poor English. Today it will be posted here.

      Reply
      1. Thomas Post author

        Stephan, I’m just catching up with this comment thread. If you still haven’t gotten in touch with Sangean, let me know. I’ll connect you!
        Best,
        Thomas

        Reply
        1. stefan

          Hi, Thomas!

          Yes, I was contacted by Sangean America exactly one week ago, when we had an interesting conversation. I didn’t updated the post because they said that they are in the process of updating the blog, but it seems that update was never posted. So, I post now all the updates.
          They offered me to exchange my radio with the version sold in the USA, but I refused the offer, because I wanted the European version which, according to a comment posted by Sangean America on this thread, will have DAB+.
          When I asked Sangean Europe about the DAB feature on the European version of the 909×2, they said that no DAB will be featured on the 909×2 and they don’t understand why Sangean America posted that information, because it is incorrect.
          Then I emailed Sangean America telling them that Sangean Europe informed me that no DAB will be featured on the 909×2. To clarify the situation, I specifically asked them to contact an engineer from Taiwan regarding this misunderstanding. After 5 minutes they came back with the confirmation that actually no DAB will be featured in the European version which is said to be released this spring.
          So, guys, please don’t expect any DAB in the improved version. As far as I’m concerned, I am going to do as Sangean America also recommended and wait for the European version to be available.
          All the best!

          Reply
    2. eckhard hensel

      DAB+ on the new ATS-909X2 for Europe? That would be wonderful, but I think its not true. This is one wish I had for new features beside DRM.
      I got my ATS-909X2 late december 2020 from Sangean Europe with no DAB+ (174.928-239.200 MHz).
      I have not all the problems Stefan has.
      My Problem with the radio – SSB Volume low – birdies on 270 | 576 | 639 kHz and others. Its not possible to listen for longer time.
      576 kHz is BNR Horizont which I listen at night, but with a Tecsun PL-990x.
      Without the birdies ATS-909X2 would be a top radio.

      Reply
      1. issac hernandez

        according to a rep at sangean America 20 pre production sample units were sent to Sangean Europe in December it is highly possible that those units were sold and distributed on the first run
        sangean america said they waited until the first official shipment was ready and when they arrived at there facility they held off on shipping them to retailers had there technician test the radio before shipping them to retailers

        Reply
  4. mark

    I received an email form one of the Sangean sales managers who is going to pass on my feedback on the 909 x2 so we will see if they fix some issues. So if this update can be posted on the main page ?

    He did confirm that he expects an “improved production run around the end of March” And I will be sure to receive a replacement.

    The issues I noticed are,

    1: internally generated noise on the Telescopic antenna more pronounced below 7 Mhz

    2 : audio volume a little low on SSB via headphones.

    3: Pressing Bandwidth on SSB does nothing.

    Other than that it’s a superb receiver, no overloading at all noticed even with the myantennas.com EFHW-8010 which is 134 feet long. MY IC-7300 overloads when conditions are tough and requires me to turn down the gain, don’t have to do this on the 909 x2, how’s that possible on a 325 Euro radio ? the 990x overloads sometimes and I can hear RTTY and CW come through on some parts of the SW commercial bands. Using the antenna gain switch helps but at the expense of some signal.

    Best of all is that super clear sound especially on SSB, Using ECSS is fantastic and it even beats my trusty Tecsun PL-680 using ECSS because the Tecsun has some soft muting, it’s not bad but it can be an issue when the signal gets low enough to activate the soft mute but it’s still a very fine receiver especially for the money, if someone doesn’t want to spend the money on the 909 x2 or PL-990x then the PL-680 is a great radio and sounds a lot better than the 990x on SSB.

    AM sound quality is fantastic compared to the old 909x due to the different filter options, the old 909x had 2 filter settings and they were far too narrow making the audio very muddy but the 909 x2 sounds fantastic.

    I think those coming from a Tecsun PL-880, 990x or S-8800 would be blown away with the quality of the Audio on SSB, those serious DX’ers who use ECSS will also be blown away with the quality of audio using ECSS something extremely difficult on the 880 and 990x because the audio just never sounds right and has lost most of the quality.

    The 880, 990x and S_8800 have a tight 3 Khz filter the 909 x2 filter is a lot wider so some QRM can be noticeable on a crowded band but the tighter filtering on the Tecsun radios is not really worth much because the audio is so poor.

    We will see if Sangean make the bandwidth setting work on SSB, probably just a matter of firmware because you can change it in AM so there should be no reason why it can’t be done on SSB.

    But I am very very impressed with the Sangean so far, I love the audio and it even sounds a lot better than my IC-7300, quieter receiver too and that’s saying a hell of a lot for the sangean. In fact, via headphones I could say that the 909 x2 sounds more like my Yaesu FT-891 which has an amazing receiver with a super low noise floor and great audio.

    Reply
    1. Mark

      I have the 909 x2 see my youtube channel here.

      https://www.youtube.com/user/o00scorpion00o/videos

      My Firmware version is 0.70

      Issues I notice, at lower frequencies using the telescopic antenna on Battery there’s some internally generated noise which gets worse if you put your hand over the screen, this goes away with external DC supply and it’s much less noticeable above around 9 Mhz + on battery.

      Reception is stronger on external DC supply.

      SSB bandwidth does not change when you press the bandwidth button.

      Improvements over the 909x

      AM sound quality is much improved.

      10 Hz tuning.

      sensitivity on telescopic antenna is greatly improved.

      ******Compared to the Tecsun PL-990x******

      The 909 X2 Sound quality on SSB is much better than the 990x , lovely clear audio, no distortion but as a consequence of no bandwidth options on the ham bands, QRM can become an issue on a crowded band, this is one area the 990 x actually wins except that the filter isn’t of much use because the sound quality on the 990x on SSB is really poor.

      The 4 Khz filter does not work on the 990x, 880 or S-8800 and it’s incredible Tecsun never fixed this, it does nothing for audio quality, in fact, the really cheap Degen DE-1103 sounds better on SSB due to it’s wider filter choice but it still has some of that DSP related distortion.

      The Sangean 909 X2 really shines using ECSS, it has no noticeable soft muting with really weak signals, check out my video in the link above listening to Rádio Clube do Pará last night, QTH Ireland. I even included a short clip using ECSS on the ic-7300 to compare.

      One of my favorite radios for ECSS is the Tecsun PL-680 but it has some soft muting which can effect readability on some very weak signals, the ATS-909 X2 is a real DX’er’s delight because ECSS works so good. Who needs SYNC ? 🙂

      One other note is that LW performance on the 909 x2 with external antenna greatly improves and doesn’t overload like the 990x which is very bad on LW with external antenna. MW performance on the 990x is excellent with external antenna, there is some overload on the 990x.

      On SW on some ham bands I can hear RTTY and CW come through on 20m voice part of the band and some commercial bands with external antenna on the Tecsun PL-990x, using the Antenna switch helps but no observable overload on the 909 X 2 on SW.

      I emailed Sangean to see if these issues can be fixed. Hopefully they will fix the noise on the telescopic antenna, I mostly use the wonderful Bonito MA-305 so it’s not a hug deal for me but mostly I would like the bandwidth options on SSB.

      Will I be keeping the 990x ? not a chance. As soon as I finish making videos it’s gone.

      Reply
    2. thomas smith

      it will turn on when you press the dimmer button but will turn off after 30 secs this is to help reduce battery usage for better battery life

      Reply
  5. Joe Average

    I have a question maybe you folks will be able to help with. I have a Radio Shack version of the ATS-505. It is the RADIO SHACK 2000629.

    It runs the batteries dead even if the radio is off. There is a green SSB/Tuning light that is on even if the radio is off. Can you help me?

    I bought this radio before I knew who Sangean was. Mine is a ~2014 or so. I like the radio, but I want to be able to use it on batteries.

    Reply
    1. Chris C

      I have a 200629 and it never does that. I would suggest resetting your radio. Pull the AC adaptor plug (if you’re using one), and pull out one of the batteries, and let it sit for 15 minutes or so. Then repower the radio. The radio has a microprocessor inside, and it’s possible that it glitched.

      Reply
  6. stefan

    Hi all!

    I am happy to tel you that I was contacted by an after sales and product manager from Sangean. This is not an answer to my first feet-back sent to service@sangean.eu, but it doesn’t matter. Anyway, is good to know that Sangean is really interested to make their products better. I was surprised that they gathered the information about my radio from the sw-ling blog. Many thanks to Thomas for making my case visible!
    I was asked to provide my radio’s serial number for further investigations. If the ATS 909×2 can be improved by the engineers, my radio will be replaced. Of course, if I find that only my radio is faulty from the first production run, than I will request a product exchange.
    On the other hand, I found an interesting fact regarding the sensitivity drop when switching bands from FM. Sensitivity can disappear also if an interference is created by an electronic device. I discovered this by mistake. Someone called me on my mobile phone while I was listening to a station on longwave and the sensitivity disappeared instantly. Than I conducted some experiments with other electronic devices and I discovered that the sensitivity disappears when the radio is close to a wifi router, to a mobile phone or to a computer. So this behavior is not necessary a result of a firmware bug. I know that the Xhdata D-808 pops when switching bands. If a strong interference is created inside the radio when I go from FM to another band, it means that we found a possible source of this issue. Might be that this radio has some safety circuit to avoid damages, caused by lightnings and other electrical discharges. That circuit acts as a breaker and is a very good idea, but is just too sensitive. I will inform Sangean about this finding.
    Even my device will be exchanged, I want to know as much as possible about this particular unit. A full report will be created and sent to Sangean.
    Shortwave evaluation coming soon.

    Reply
  7. Mark

    I should have my 909 X2 by Friday, the old 909x sounded so much better than the PL-880/990x and the S-8800 because it was free from the distortion and horrible sound on SSB but for me audio volume was too low via headphones making weak DX difficult to hear and the AM filter was far too narrow, the sound was muddy.

    I emailed Sangean to see if the new 909x 2 could work on LW/MW via external antenna socket and sadly it can’t but if I decide to keep it if it’s good enough I might mod it, I’m going to do this soon to the PL-680.

    The PL-990x works on LW/MW via external antenna but LW overloads badly, MW greatly improves but with some overload but the issues on SSB really make the 990x very overpriced, as soon as I’m finished making videos with mine I’ll be selling it. Just hope the 909x 2 is good. I returned the 909x to Amazon.

    Reply
    1. stefan

      Just a few words regarding my experience with Tecsun radios

      Last year I tried three Tecsun pl 880 units and the new pl-990x. All four radios had two issues on medium wave:
      1. On 540 kHZ there was a clearly audible tone, mixed with a signal from Kosuth Radio, Budapest, Hungary. I tried the radios in different locations with the same result. Only these Tecsun Radios sounded bad on that particular frequency, my Tecsun pl-398 can receive that station without being mixed with any tone. I can receive clearly that station on other radios, including Sangean pr-d4, Panasonic RF-3500/g500, Sangean vocal 170/pr-d17. An older recording is here:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HpKCgCSHhgqvCB9borHEEU74RC3d90UO/view?usp=sharing

      Hear the same tone here, at 03:55:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3cZOq239Hd4&t=182s

      2. The upper part of the medium wave was much less sensitive on these four radios, compared with a much cheaper pl-398. Above 1200 kHZ, the difference was huge. Unfortunately, I don’t have any recordings for demonstration. On the contrary, the pl-398 is almost deaf on long wave.
      I was surprised that nobody mentioned these issues, but is not easy to notice them. For example, you will never hear the tone on 540, unless there is at least a faint signal on that frequency.

      Reply
    1. JJ Watson

      I just received the ATS 909×2 today ( version 70) and tested it out against a C. Crane Skywave SSB. I was shocked that the C. Crane consistently picked up signals I couldn’t hear on the 909×2. When both radios were able to pick up the same signal, it came through louder and more clear on the C. Crane each time (I swear I don’t work for C. Crane). I tested with and without the external antenna that came with each radio and the results were basically the same. I was kinda stunned and REALLY disappointed because the look, feel and sound of the 909×2 is amazing and I WANT to keep it. I’m going to test it out again tomorrow, but if I can’t figure out what’s going on, the 909×2 is going back to Amazon. I”ll use fresh batteries, since my test today was done using some Eneloops that are kinda old. But even after plugging the radio into the wall, the C. Crane performance still crushed it. If anyone has any suggestions on how to improve the 909×2 performance, please let me know!

      Reply
  8. DanH

    I hope that Stephan’s experience with the Sangean ATS-909X2 from Sangean Europe improves soon. It’s good to see that some people are beginning to receive these radios.

    I have a 909X2 on pre-order from Amazon.com. This is a production line model and not a promotional radio. My Visa card took the hit with discounts and pricing available to all customers on the order date. My latest estimated delivery date is February 9 – 12, 2021. This 909X2 will be distributed to both Amazon and HRO by Sangean America, Inc. As of last week my unimpeachable source tells me that the 909X2 is expected to arrive at these two retailers by January 31.

    One of my hobbies is making SWL and DX videos at YouTube channel Willow Slough DX https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBS1S1WX1DkCp037ZWfLzvA/videos. I have two 909Xs (one built in 2014 and the other in October of 2019) and both work flawlessly. I want to feature the new 909X2 videos after becoming familiar with the radio. Incidentally, the only significant differences in my two 909Xs are improvements made to the power supply in the newer radio.

    I’ll keep in touch as the 909X2 saga continues.

    Reply
      1. DanH

        LOL! No, I didn’t bite on that offer. As mentioned above I pre-ordered the 909X2 from Amazon.com, not one of the third party vendors that also list on Amazon.

        Reply
  9. Andreja

    Oh, wow, it’s quite disappointing to hear this!
    I actually just came back from a walk to a nearby park, where I was trying out the radio. My own 909X2 is much different in its performance. It’s the “black” version, the date code is 2020/10, and version number is 070.

    I don’t get any reception loss when switching bands, and I never had to turn the radio off, and turn it on again, for reception to re-appear.

    I’m not 100% sure what to say about the tone issue you mentioned. I definitely don’t hear the tones as clearly as you do on your recordings, but I did hear a persistent tone around when I was listening to a wide bandwidth around 3700 kHz in LSB. On the broadcast bands, it’s possible to hear tones sometimes, but I always assumes that they’re carriers of adjacent stations, since the tones only appear with the widest bandwidth, and go away when I select a narrower filter.

    I also had a quite different experience on the long-wave band: I had no problems picking up a number of NDBs above 300 kHz!

    As far as the frequency calibration is concerned, I tested my unit using RWM, on 4996 9996 kHz, and my radio was off by some 80 Hz, so I was a bit dissatisfied, since there’s no easy way to adjust the calibration. I did have the same issue with my ATS-505, but I got the service manual for it, after contacting the Sangean America. Even if Sangean does share service manuals for 909X3, that’s still more complicated than the menu solution Tecsuns have.

    I can’t say anything about the battery levels. I was trying out the “smart” charger on the radio, and was regularly recharging my batteries, so I still haven’t run my radio with batteries half empty.

    As far as unexpected behavior goes, I did manage to accidentallyenter into 100 kHz step mode on the SW band, and got out of it by accident. Perhaps I’m not reading the manual properly, but I don’t remember seeing anything about that step size in it.

    Perhaps it would be good to contact Sangean and see what they can do/say about the issues?

    Reply
    1. DanH

      Andreja, I have an advance copy of the ATS-909X2 user manual GB v.1. “Setting the Tuning Step” appears on page 9:

      “Finally, the ATS-909X2 also features a quick tuning feature. This feature can be used by pressing and holding the Enter button (30) while simultaneously rotating the Rotary Tuning knob (16). Quick tuning allows for even larger frequency steps, but it can only be used on the AIR, FM and SW bands.”

      A table (also on page 9) lists the available tuning steps for AIR, FM, LW, MW, and SW. The tuning steps for SW are: zero (stop), 5 kHz, 1 kHz, and 100 kHz (Quick Tuning).

      Happy listening!

      Reply
      1. Andreja

        Hi! Thanks for pointing that out, I did miss the description, when I looked at that page.

        When I press and hold enter, and turn the tuning knob, I do indeed get the 100 kHz step, but what I got yesterday was a bit different: I would only get the 100 kHz step in the SW band, and not the rest (and I did switch through all other bands),meaning that the enter key did not get stuck in pressed state or similar, and it would happen without me pressing and holding the enter key.

        Reply
        1. d

          As the table (chart) on page 9 states the Quick Tuning steps for the FM and AIR bands are 1 MHz, not 100 kHz. The 100 kHz step is used for SW only. There are no Quick Tuning steps for MW and LW.

          Reply
      1. LukAM

        I saw this radio on the Sangean EU website a few months ago. Discover 405 was still in the Sangean 2020 catalog. I was browsing the catalog on the site Sangean.eu I didn’t find this radio. So I wonder if they have finished production.

        Reply
  10. john

    I recently purchased an ATS-909X.

    I had to return it due to display issues, characters would appear on the display unassociated with the display function selected and the clock would reset itself at random…back it went.

    Reply
  11. Mike S

    Unless someone is acting as a hardware reviewer, I still fail to see the logic in shelling out large sums to purchase from a first production run – especially now, with all the worldwide issues with production and parts issues. You run a great risk of paying to act as a beta tester.

    I used to think that Sangean had a great track record of getting it right the first time, but that bubble was burst when my 909X ended up being my most expensive Amazon return to date at the time, as it was so deaf when used as a portable (i.e. barefoot).

    Reply
    1. John

      That’s interesting, in the time I owned my ATS-909X before it was returned due to the flaws mentioned above, I did a crude comparison between my ICF-SW07, ICF-SW7600GR and ICF-SW100 and the ATS-909X indoors using their telescopic whip antennas. Looked for weak signals across the HF bands and listened to the reception on each receiver for each weak signal I found. I thought the sensitivity of the ATS-909X was slightly weaker than the others but there wasn’t much in it.

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