Voice of Korea via Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM)?

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Paul Jamet, who writes:

Hi Thomas,

Several listeners have posted videos on YouTube about receiving broadcasts of “The Voice of Korea” on 6140 kHz DRM – Digital Radio Mondiale.

One video in particular caught my attention, from Indian listeners in the Kerala region:

Indeed, these headphones use a Chinese receiver, the G-226 from GOSPELL which is also sold by TECSUN in Australia: https://www.tecsunradios.com.au/store/product/tecsun-drm-radio/

So, you can see how this receiver works.

All this has aroused my curiosity! And yesterday, Friday 17 June 2022, at 20:00 UTC I connected to several kiwi SDRs in the Pacific area. The DRKP signal could be picked up almost 8,000 km from the transmitter site near Pyong-Yang.

Here attached a screenshot and an audio file recorded with a kiwi SDR located a few kilometres away near Perth, Australia – Distance according to Google Maps, about 7960 km

The signal is encoded in AAC and not xHE AAC

[Audio: Note that the audio level jumps several times, so don’t turn up the volume too high.]

Who is this program for? According to Indian radio listeners, probably to the North Korean fleet in the Pacific. To be continued.

Have a nice weekend. Yours sincerely

Paul JAMET

I would have never guessed VOK would broadcast in DRM. Very interesting indeed. Perhaps we’ll learn more about this with time or someone can confirm whether or not this is actually VOK. Thank you for sharing this, Paul!

Spread the radio love

7 thoughts on “Voice of Korea via Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM)?

  1. mangosman

    On the few TV stories I have seen on North Korea, the North Korean music has sound of a similar quality. This example sounds like the transmitter input can from another HF broadcast because of the phasing effects.
    DAB+ uses AAC V2 and sounds fine including stereo sound.
    xHE AAC is being used by Netfix, Apple, ATSC3.0 DTV and DRM

    A demonstration of xHE AAC coding at various bit rates.

    Reply
  2. Ron F

    > I would have never guessed VOK would broadcast in DRM. Very interesting indeed. Perhaps we’ll learn more about this with time or someone can confirm whether or not this is actually VOK.

    It’s VoK; they’ve been broadcasting DRM regularly for … maybe 2 or 3 years now? … and on-and-off for about a decade. It’s pretty well documented in the usual places e.g. DRMNA forum & mailing list, Glenn Hauser’s, etc.

    Reply
  3. Mark

    xHE AAC on DRM is amazing, Funklust sounds really great, but it depends on the quality of the audio going to the transmitter to begin with.

    AAC sounds really bad though regardless and I don’t know how anyone in any sane mind could just come out with statements on how good DRM is vs Analogue, it’s efficient I’ll give it that, It amazes me how rock steady CRI is on the 31 m band in the evenings here in Ireland with just 30 Kw.

    WINB in the mornings here on 9265 Khz is a cracking signal with only 10 Kw.

    The issue for me is that awful highly compressed audio sounds so bad compared to analogue but XHE-AAC sounds a lot better, just wish the could use a higher bitrate.

    Reply
    1. Robert Richmond

      Have you tried cooking the audio with StereoTool?

      https://www.thimeo.com/stereo-tool/

      The declipper and delossifier features might help, though they are paid options. Of the free options, you might try natural dynamics, true bass, and/or highs reconstruction. YMMV, of course.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.