Tag Archives: Colin Newell

Colin’s review of the CC Skywave SSB

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor Colin Newell of DXer.ca who shares part one of his review of the CC Skywave SSB.

Colin’s review is nothing short of glowing and he obviously has a first production unit that isn’t plagued with the DSP noises five of my review units had.

As I stated in my review, the Skywave SSB is an impressive little receiver when DSP noises and birdies aren’t an issue. My Beta unit is a lot of fun to put on the air and has become my go-to “Swiss Army Knife” travel radio.

I will be testing an early second production unit of the CC Skywave SSB later this year and will post my evaluation here on the Post.

Click here to read part one of Colin’s review.

 

A birthday message from Ian McFarland

Many thanks to Colin Newell who forwards the following birthday message from Ian McFarland:

Ian McFarland receiving his birthday card filled with your messages. (Photo: Colin Newell at DXer.ca)

To all my SWL friends & colleagues,

I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed reading all your birthday wishes & comments that Colin so kindly collected & transcribed from all your e-mails. For this old man it was a most enjoyable exercise in pure nostalgia. Thank you all so very much! There were lots of familiar names on those messages, and of course, to be truthful, lots of names that weren’t familiar after so many years. Memory loss is, after all, one of the unfortunate drawbacks of getting to the age that people refer to as “elderly”!

I find it hard to believe that I retired from RCI over a quarter century ago now, mercifully, some years before its impending virtual destruction over the next few years. I’m just grateful that I was at RCI during almost 25 years of RCI’s heyday. I’m also grateful for all the opportunities I had to travel to Europe, the U.S. and other parts of Canada to attend a variety of SWL gatherings and have the opportunity to talk with so many of my listeners. I’m sure that over my years at RCI I met many times more listeners than the rest of RCI staff and management combined.

Attending all those events, including the three ANARC conventions that were hosted by RCI, gave me many useful insights into what our listeners liked to hear about, and the determined efforts they made, especially in the noisy interference ridden listening environment in Europe, to tune in to my SWL Digest program. I can’t tell you how much that meant to me. Many thanks again for all your wonderful birthday wishes & comments.

Cheers for now & Good Listening everyone.

Kind regards.

Ian.

Ian’s 80th birthday celebration

Ian McFarland (Photo: Colin Newell at DXer.ca)

Earlier this month, Colin Newell asked SWLing Post readers for birthday wishes and memories to share with former Radio Canada International host, Ian McFarland.

Yesterday, I received the following message from Colin:

“For a guy who just turned 80, Ian McFarland looks and sounds amazing.

For the 50+ folks that sent their best wishes for this veteran of World Band Radio, thank you, thank you and thank you.”

Colin has posted photos over at DXer.ca.

You’re right, Colin…Ian looks great! Thanks everyone!

Let’s wish Ian a Happy Birthday!

Ian McFarland (photo courtesy: DXer.ca)

Many thanks to DXer.ca host, Colin Newell, who requests your help:

Ian McFarland is celebrating a very important birthday in July! Please join me in congratulating Ian in this milestone by sending me your best wishes for Ian to our contact e-mail.

I will transcribe all of these notes onto one big card for Ian! Ian McFarland has given so much to the World of World-band radio – and now is a great time to recognize this. Don’t be shy! Send a note

Thanks for putting together this card for Ian!

Readers, please contact Colin directly via this link to send your greetings to Ian!

CKZU unlikely to return to shortwave

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

From DXLD today in case you missed it . Well at least CKZN St. Johns [also on 6160 @ 1kw] is still on (last I checked) , the one I can hear at my QTH.

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Bad news re: CKZU 6160 Khz

Volodya S

Fellas, from an insider at the CBC. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look good for CKZU ever returning to the air. 🙁 Thanks to Colin Newell for digging into this further.

Walt Salmaniw, Victoiria, BC

Got the answer.. not gonna like it.
Basically, it broke and they don’t have parts to fix it because it’s too old and no parts available. The money required to purchase a new transmitter doesn’t make sense because of the low numbers of people who use it (changing world, everything’s online, blah blah). Before you say it, yes I know, I know.

Anyway, there is no other way to voice your displeasure than the 1-866-306-4636 audience relations number. If enough people call, they might notice, but I doubt it.

Sorry to be the bad news messenger. I kinda figured that was the deal of why it was off the air.

This is sad news indeed for those who enjoyed CKZU. What amazes me, is how a 500 watt shortwave relay covered such a large broadcast footprint in British Columbia and western North America.

On that note, I just discovered this post by Colin Newell (referenced above) on his blog, the Coffee Crew Blog. Colin mentions when he started listening to CKZU and what it meant to him. Check out his post.

CKZU was a reasonably tough catch here on the east coast of the US–especially due to CKZN who shared the frequency–though I’ve heard them numerous times. Indeed, this will prompt me to go back a few years in my SDR spectrum archive recordings and tune them in once again–sort of a postmortem DX–? I’m sure I’ve captured them.

As Dave mentions above, CKZN St. Johns is still on the air and, perhaps, listeners on the west coast will have a better chance snagging their 1 kW signal now. According to an article about CKZN in the latest WRTH, the station should be around for many years to come.

Thanks again, Dave, for the tip and many thanks to Colin for the research.