Category Archives: AM

a.bsolument: Converting radios from vintage valve into boutique Bluetooth

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Kim Elliott, who shares this link to a French company called a.bsolument who specializes in converting vintage valve radios into hi-fidelity Bluetooth-connected audio devices.

According to a.solument’s introduction video, they take vintage radios in disrepair, gut the insides and replace the components with modern hardware which includes Bluetooth 4.0 and aux-in capabilities:

While I LOVE vintage radios, I have conflicting feelings about this process.

I take pride in keeping my vintage gear in proper working order (through the help of a mentor). Something that simply cannot be replicated with digital hardware is the sound and warm fidelity of AM audio emanating from a valve classic. At home, I have the option of feeding all of my vintage gear Bluetooth and wireless connectivity via an AM transmitter. This allows me to play any digital content while preserving the original audio fidelity (and warming my radio room with those glowing tubes!).

With that said, I’m very much aware that it’s becoming increasingly difficult for the average consumer to find a technician who can repair tube gear affordably. Indeed, some feel it’s impossible thus toss their family radio in the trash.

If a.bsolument is giving vintage beauties–that would otherwise be in a landfill–a new lease on life, then I’m all for it!

What do you think?  Please comment!

C. Crane’s latest deal: Free Shipping on the CC Pocket Radio

Though not a shortwave radio (the SWLing Post loves ALL radios!), C. Crane’s latest special involves free Priority Mail shipping to U.S. customers for their CC Pocket Radio.  Just use the Promo Code: CCPKTSHIP.  This special ends at midnight PST on 17 December.  The CC Pocket Radio comes standard with the CC Buds earphones – a quality set of earbuds.

Crane’s Amazon Canada store offers free shipping with a number of C. Crane products through Amazon Canada Prime.

Post author: Troy Riedel

 

How to find North American stations broadcasting in C-QUAM AM Stereo

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Dave Zantow (N9EWO), who writes:

Just how many MW stations in North America are broadcasting in “C-QUAM AM Stereo” these days?? I found this reference which appears to be the most accurate list around the internet.

http://www.meduci.com/stations.html

I have taken this list and have edited it and converted to a PDF file [click here to download].

Best way to catch a AM Stereo signal these days is with a SDR device. We have been using Bernd Reiser’s “SoDiRa” program (version 0.100 Preview 24) with a SDRPlay RSP1 and does an excellent job with C-QUAM AM Stereo decoding.

http://www.dsp4swls.de/sodira/sodiraeng.html

During sky wave nighttime conditions we received CFCO in Chatham Ontario well of late on 630 kHz in AM STEREO (country music format). Program also appears to have built in DRM and DRM+ decoding (we have not tested this part of the program). IMPORTANT NOTE : We found we needed to use the older EXTIO version 3.7 otherwise we encountered errors with OUR connected Windows 7 PC’s (your situation may vary).

Dan Robinson’s JRC NRD-545

Not to forget that the JRC NRD-545 receiver has “built in” AM Stereo decoding (AMS mode). One MUST use the phono jack “line outputs” on the rear panel connected to an external amplifier etc. It does NOT output via it’s headphone connector. Speaking of the JRC NRD-545, please see my web page for late important service information on my “Radio News” webpage.

http://webpages.charter.net/n9ewo2/news.html

Thanks for the tip, Dave!

The last time I listened to a C-QUAM AM stereo station it was with WNNC station owner/manager, Dave Lingafelt. We sat in his beautiful red Buick Reatta, parked at the station and transmitter site and listened to 1970s rock on 1230 kHz.  Needless to say, it sounded absolutely amazing! Indeed, all of Dave Lingafelt’s stations (WNNC, WAIZ and WXRC) sound amazing.

To listen to an AM station in stereo is a real treat. Thanks for reminding us, Dave!

WRTH 2018 available to order

(Source: WRTH Facebook group via Sean Gilbert)

It’s here!!

WRTH 2018 has been published and is available to order from www.wrth.com or your usual supplier.

Orders direct to our website will usually be dispatched the same day, or the first business day after (if ordering at the weekend or after business hours).
Other publications or internet resources may give you the broadcast schedules – but that is about it.

We give you the schedules and so much more. We have full contact details for each station; Station Identifications, as used on air; opening and closing melodies; transmitter details; verification methods and more. Add to that reviews of receivers, antennas and radio related accessories; articles from around the world capturing some of the little known services as well as the big, international broadcasters. Visit the website for the full story, sample pages and details of other products we offer.

Click here to visit WRTH online.

Radio New Zealand plans to exit AM radio

(Source: Stuff.co.nz via Trevor R)

[…]In the longer term, the report raised RNZ’s wish to divest from broadcasting infrastructure.

“RNZ currently owns a significant property portfolio and other related equipment required to support its AM radio services,” it said. “While the AM audience is declining, the cost of maintenance and upkeep of the property, buildings and AM equipment is increasing.”

The report went on to say RNZ was sitting on potentially lucrative land, that could be used for housing.

“RNZ considers it is now time to work with stakeholders to develop plans to, either partially or completely, exit AM broadcasting over time,” the report said.

Thompson said RNZ’s plan to sell of its transition sites would likely take more than a decade. It had just invested in a new AM tower in Titahi Bay, Wellington, that he said cost “millions”.

Through its network of transmission towers, RNZ was also responsible for broadcasting other radio stations including Newstalk ZB and iwi radio stations.

“We think we’re an audience and content organisation, not an infrastructure organisation,” Thompson said.

If RNZ was to sell or close its AM towers, he said the Government would need to make the call. The other broadcasters would also need to be consulted.

Read the full article at Stuff.co.nz by clicking here.