Category Archives: Recordings

BBC Crowd Science: “How does my radio work?”

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Kris Partridge, for sharing the following story:

Crowd Science: How does my radio work?

How is a small budget pocket radio able to recreate all the atmosphere and sounds of a football match? CrowdScience listener Andy wants to know about the science enabling his radio listening, so presenter CrowdScience Geoff Marsh sets off – microphone in hand – to follow the journey of sound on the radio.

Starting with the microphone, Geoff learns how acoustic energy is converted into electrical signals. Then BBC World Service presenter Gareth takes Geoff to a little-known room in the BBC called the Radio Shack. Gareth demonstrates how these electrical signals are attached to radio waves before being sent over the airwaves and they take a radio kit apart to understand how these waves are received and converted back into sound waves.
Geoff talks to a speech and hearing specialist who, through the use of auditory illusions, shows Geoff that our brains are often filling in the gaps of lower quality audio.

Finally, Geoff visits an acoustic lab at Salford University where he hears a demonstration of ‘object based audio’. This technology could enable us to create our own bespoke mix of dramas and sports, such as heightening the commentary sound or choosing to hear just the crowd, just by using the everyday speakers many have lying around them, such as mobile phones.

Tune in and join us!
Presented by Geoff Marsh
Produced by Melanie Brown

Click here to read/listen on the BBC website.

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Shortwave’s Giant: Carlos explores evangelical broadcasting to MENA

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor and political cartoonist, Carlos Latuff, who shares the following guest post:


WINNING HEARTS, MINDS AND…SOULS!

Catechizing via shortwave.

by Carlos Latuff, special for The SWLing Post

During the Vietnam War (1955-1975), the expression “hearts and minds” became popular and referred to the US government’s strategy to gain allies among the South Vietnamese against the Vietcong guerrillas. Over the years this strategy has been used in different contexts. What I’m going to talk about in this short article is how the radio waves have served Christian evangelical churches, to win hearts and minds, specially in Africa and Middle East (MENA).

Different from what I did with the Ethiopian clandestine broadcasts, when I spent around 3 months monitoring, with evangelical radios it took only two days in January 2022; quite simple, since they’re stations with regular programming. Most of them have good signal reception, there’s no jamming from other countries and, despite transmitting in different languages, little translation was necessary since the content is always the same: religious preaching.

All listenings happened in Rio de Janeiro. The radio sets used in this monitoring were the XHDATA D-808 and an old analog radio Sanyo RP-8351, made in Brazil in the 70’s. A 7-meter long wire antenna was used in all listenings. Continue reading

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Carlos’ Shortwave Art and Recording of the Voice of Korea (12 Jan 2022)

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor and noted political cartoonist, Carlos Latuff, who shares yet another example of his radio log art, this time for The Voice of Korea.

Carlos notes:

Voice of Korea, 9650 kHz, broadcasting in Japanese from Kujang, North Korea.

Newsletter: Kim Jong Un watches test of new hypersonic ballistic missile.

Transmission with jamming, probably from South Korea.

Signal captured in Rio de Janeiro, 01/12/2022, 05:07, local time.

Click here to view on YouTube.

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Carlos Shares Shortwave Art and Recordings of Ethiopian Jamming and BBC News Tigrinya

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor and political cartoonist, Carlos Latuff, who has been exploring the world of clandestine radio, documenting the on-going conflict in Ethiopia via shortwave radio. The following are two examples of his radio log art, this time for documenting jamming of Dimtse Wegahta Tigray and BBC News Tigrinya. Carlos shares the following art and recordings:

Ethiopian Jamming

Characteristic noise of “jamming” (intentional interference), probably coming from the Ethiopian government, preventing reception of the signal from the clandestine broadcaster Dimtse Wegahta Tigray (Voice of the Dawn Tigray).

Dimtse Wegahta Tigray broadcasts daily to warring Ethiopia on the frequency of 15340 kHz, using the powerful transmitters of the company TDF (Télédiffusion de France) in Issoudun, France.

Captured at Parque da Catacumba, Rio de Janeiro, 12/29/2021, 2:36 pm (local time):

Click here to view on YouTube.

BBC News Tigrinya broadcasting from UAE to Ethiopia/Eritrea

BBC News Tigrinya, 12065 kHz, broadcasting from Al Dhabbiya, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Excerpt from the news.
– Ethiopian party member EZEMA talks about the intention to form a cabinet in the government of Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed despite the war.
– US Embassy in Eritrea asks that country’s government to release political dissidents.

The BBC is among the news channels that are accused by the Ethiopian government of “spreading fake news”.

Signal received in Rio de Janeiro, 01/04/2022, at 3:14 pm (local time).

Thanks to yaredinho_r9 for the translation.

Click here to view on YouTube.

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Recordings of WI2XLQ: 2021 Commemorative Fessenden Broadcast on 486 kHz

WA1ZMS’ 600 meter transmitter

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Brian Smith (W9IND), who shares the following recordings and notes:

Since 2012, experimental radio station WI2XLQ in Forest, Virginia, has presented an annual Christmas Eve/Christmas Day transmission in honor of Canadian radio pioneer Reginald Fessenden. Operated by Brian Justin, WA1ZMS, the station transmits on 486 kHz, just below the American AM broadcast band.

Here are two short recordings of the 2021 broadcast that I made around 9 p.m. on Christmas Eve (Indianapolis time) or 0200 UTC Christmas Day.

No DXing feat on my part: Unable to receive the station in the Indianapolis area, I listened via the online SDR of K1RA in Warrenton, Virginia, about 120 miles northeast of WI2XLQ.

My recording equipment? Again, nothing to brag about — just my trusty Android cell phone, which captured 4- and 6-minute snippets of the broadcast.

Signal strength varied widely from inaudible to excellent — mostly in between — and not surprisingly there’s plenty of QRN (static). The repeating program consisted of two songs, including a violin rendition of “O Holy Night,” followed by a station ID.

For those who’ve never managed to hear WI2XLQ’s annual transmissions, I hope you’ll enjoy this sampling of what you missed.

NOTE: As even Justin acknowledges, these broadcasts commemorate a reputed 1906 event that may not actually have taken place. Despite Fessenden’s claim of achieving the first voice (and music) transmission, substantiation is lacking. Whatever the truth, Fessenden was unquestionably one of the foremost radio experimenters of his era.

Recordings:

Many thanks for sharing this, Brian!

Note that if you missed the WI2XLQ on Christmas, note than Brian Justin plans to repeat the Fessenden broadcast on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day!

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Carlos’ Shortwave Art and Recording of Dimtse Wegahta Tigray (Voice of the Dawn Tigray)

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Carlos Latuff, who shares the following recording of Dimtse Wegahta Tigray and notes:

Dimtse Wegahta Tigray (Voice of the Dawn Tigray), 15340 kHz, clandestine broadcast in the Tigrinia language from Issoudun, France, to warring Ethiopia.

    • Tigray regional government sends letter to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
    • US emissary to Ethiopia says the withdrawal of tigray troops from Amhara and Afar will open the door to peace talks.
    • Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed speaks on peace talks as the fight against Tigray forces continues.

Signal received in Juiz de Fora, MG, 12/25/2021, 14:33, local time.
Thanks to Hamza Oromo, Habay11521925, and HizbiTigray for the translation.

Many thanks for sharing, Carlos!

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Carlos’ Shortwave Art and Recording of Clandestine Republic of Yemen Radio

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor and noted political cartoonist, Carlos Latuff, who shares another example of his radio log art, this time for clandestine station, Republic of Yemen Radio.

Carlos notes:

Republic of Yemen Radio, 11860 kHz, Saudi Arabia’s clandestine broadcaster broadcasting political propaganda to Yemen, a country that has been undergoing Saudi military intervention since 2015. Excerpt from a romantic song by the famous Yemeni singer Ayoob Tarish.

Signal picked up in Rio de Janeiro on Euro 12, 2021 at 6:03 pm. I thank Suhaila Abdel Latif for the kindness of the translation.

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