Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor Loyd Van Horn at DX Central who shares the following announcement:
Another great week in the MW Frequency Challenge, and you all continue to pour the logs in! Our live streams on Saturday nights have been so much fun getting to interact and hear about what you heard in the previous week. If you haven’t been able to make it to a livestream yet, you are missing out! Join us Saturdays at 1945 CST / 0145 UTC (Sunday morning, UTC) on our YouTube channel: youtube.com/c/dxcentral
A total of 29 DXers from three countries (Mexico, Canada and the US) and 17 US States brought in 82 logs for Week 9 of our MW Frequency Challenge. 25 unique stations in 18 states and six countries made it to this week’s log. The number of logged stations was down, because there are fewer stations on 550 than previous weeks. But look at that jump in countries…an opportunity here for DXers to get some great international DX!
Most Logged Stations: From runner-up last week to the top spot this week, South Carolina’s Rob Keeney hauled in an impressive 9 stations this week. Right on his heels, was Mark Connelly (MA) and Stephanie Battaglino (CA) with 7 each.
Most Logged States: Rob Keeney once again took the top spot for heard states this week with 7 logged US states: FL, GA, MO, NC, NY, OH, TX
Most Logged Countries: Mark Connelly (MA) brought in the most countries (including US) with 4 total countries: Colombia, Cuba, US, Venezuela.
Furthest Logging: Brent Taylor of Canada’s Prince Edward Island and his log of YVKE-Radio Mundial in Venezuela was our longest reception of the week at 2,477 miles! This was only 5 miles more than the #2 spot, Mark Connelly’s 2,472 mile reception of HJHF-Radio Nacional de Colombia in Colombia. Even tighter, Mark’s log was only ONE MILE more than our third place finish from Marc DeLorenzo for his log of HJHF at 2,471 miles! Talk about a close one! Rounding out our top 10 was Jim Renfrew (NY) – 2,358 miles for YVKE, Mark Connelly (MA) – 2,163 for YVKE, Rob Keeney (SC) – 2,034 for HJHF, Brent Taylor (PEI) – 1,962 for WPAB, Mark Connelly (MA) 1,531 for Radio Rebelde, and Stephanie Battaglino (CA) – 1,094 for KTSA.
Loyd/DX Central Numbers:
5 stations logged
3 states logged (GA, MO, TX)
3 countries logged (USA, Cuba, Colombia)
1,926 miles for furthest catch (HJHF in Colombia)
Most Logged Station: WGY in Buffalo, NY brought in 10 logs this week for the top spot. Missouri’s KTRS and Cincinnati’s WKRC at 7 logs each were just behind them.
Most Logged State/Province: As you might imagine, WGR’s logs brought NY to the top spot here with 10 receptions. NC (9) and TX, MO (8 each) were just behind.
Most Logged Country (outside of US): Colombia and Mexico each brought in 4 loggings this week. Cuba and Venezuela (3 each) were just behind. In all, 15 stations outside of the US were logged this week.
Busiest Time of Day: Overnight hours (67% of logs) continued to be the busiest period for DX. Surprisingly, sunrise was in the second spot with 14.6% of all logs. Sunset (11%) and Daytime (7.3%) rounded out the rest of the day.
Most Used Receiver: While portable use is still going strong, SDRs once again were the king of DX this week with 56 of 82 logs (69%). Portables brought in 20 logs (24%) of all loggings. Among SDRs, we actually had a new brand at the top of the hill as Airspy SDRs brought in a total of 22 loggings (40% of all SDR logs). SDRPlay’s 18 logs (32% of SDR logs) and Perseus’s 13 receptions (23% of SDR logs) were also very popular this week. For portables, Tecsun’s came out of nowhere this week to take the top spot with 9 loggings (45% of portable logs). C. Crane radios (4 loggings, 20% of portable logs) took the #2 spot.
Most Used Antenna: Magnetic Loops were once again the most popular option for DXers this week, with 32 logs (40% of all logs). The Wellbrook loop’s 21 loggings (65% of all mag loop logs) were the most popular used mag loop, with both the W6LVP and YouLoop (9 logs each, at 28%) also bringing in DX. Termed loops proved to continue to be a popular option as well, with 17 loggings (21% of all loggings). This week, other loops (such as the AN-200 or Tecun loops) also brought in 17 loggings this week as a popular option.
With week 9 now under wraps, we look ahead to week 10 and for this week, we have a rather unique challenge. Rather than focus on a single frequency, we are going to explore the ENTIRE expanded band! 1610-1710 kHz – any licensed station (including broadcast and TIS) count as a valid log. No pirates, no NDBs, etc. So the NJ TIS station on 1710? Counts. 1630 Radio Elohim in El Salvador? Counts. The “TVS” NDB on 1650? Does not count.
With 11 frequencies to contend with – even with much fewer stations per frequency – this should be our largest week yet!
Logs for Week 10 will only be accepted for stations received between 0300 UTC Sunday, January 23, 2022 and 0300 UTC Sunday, January 30th (will be announcing the closing during our live stream of DX Central Live!). Logs must be for licensed stations received between 1610 and 1710 kHz. This includes all standard broadcast stations in the US and internationally, as well as any TIS stations received. Logs must be from your own equipment using WebSDRs is allowed for reference, but will not be counted towards the challenge (unless it is YOUR WebSDR). If you do log from a WebSDR, be sure to mark your location as from the location of the WebSDR itself, not your home location. All loggings must be submitted using our Google Form at https://forms.gle/41FNE9F81bhCr4ts6 Submissions by any other form including social media, email, etc. will not be accepted.
An eCertificate will be sent to the DXer with the most logged stations during the challenge time period. Additional eCertificates may be presented at the discretion of DX Central.
Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Kanwar Sandhu, who shares the following announcement/rules for the Top 10 DX of the Year Contest:
Top 10 DX of the Year Rules
The date of the contest:
From 1 December 2020, 00:00 UTC to 31 December 2020, 24:00 UTC
– The contest is open for all shortwave listeners. It is not obligatory to be a club member.
– The contest is free of charge and all costs are covered by TOP DX RADIOCLUB.
– The task of the contest:
Reception of 10 BROADCAST stations from 10 optional, DIFFERENT countries during the contest (according to the official DXCC list**).
– The aim of the contest:
Award of the best DX’er who really succeeded in receiving the year’s TOP 10 DX: it means that it received the smallest power station possible from the longest distance possible.
– It is not obligatory to register in advance. On the other hand, it would help the organizers if you sent an email with your name and 6-character Maidenhead QTH locator code*. If you don’t wish to do that it is enough to provide your data in the contest log. All personal data and email addresses are handled with care by TOP DX RADIOCLUB and they are never given to a third party. We also hate spammers. The data are used to inform the contestants in connection with the contest and the evaluation of the results.
– The rules of the contest:
Reception of 10 BROADCAST stations from 10 DIFFERENT countries. Excluding: unofficial, meteorological, DRM or other digital, military, spy, pirate, time etalon, amateur contacts and other technical receptions. It is strictly prohibited to use WEB SDR, internet radio and other remote-controlled equipment. The receiver antenna has to be attached to the radio physically and directly. One country can appear in the log only once. (Country=where the transmitter can be found)
The enabled frequency range: from 2300 kHz to 30000 kHz. The contest referees and organizers cannot take part in the contest.
– The obligatory content of the log:
Date (day, month, year),
Frequency (in kHz),
The ID name of the station,
Country (where the transmitter can be found),
The language of the broadcast,
The geographical location (city) of the transmitter site,
The details of the broadcast (general description without specific details cannot be accepted)
The judges may ask for additional data from the contestants (eg. the power of the transmitter)
– The obligatory content of the log’s annex:
The name of the contestant,
Address (where the certificate can be posted)
Geographical location where he/she has participated from (according to the 6-character Maidenhead QTH locator)*
The type of the receiver(s),
The type of the antenna(s).
Name: Jean Sample
Address: France, Paris, Rue Parrot 2.
QTH locator: JN18EU
RX: Yaesu FRG-7000, Perseus SDR
Antenna: 80m Long Wire, Wellbrook ALA-1530
– The format of the log:
The logs have to be sent electronically to topdx.radioclub(at)gmail(dot)com in doc, docx, xls, xlsx, pdf, txt, or cabrillo format. We accept logs in English language and Hungarian language. All contestants get an email of confirmation after receiving the log in 24 hours.
– The deadline of receiving the logs:
5 January 2021. 24:00 UTC
All contestants declare by sending the logs that all data in the log are true and correct, all of the receiving were done by himself/herself within the given time range from the provided place according to the QTH locator and the adherence of the rules.
– Announcement of results: Before 31 January 2021.
The distance between the contestant’s QTH locator and the transmitting tower’s QTH locator divided by the power of the transmitter.
The distance between QTH is dimensioned in kilometers and measured in short path. The transmitter power is dimensioned in kilowatts. Only official data are considered given by WRTH (World Radio TV Handbook – www.wrth.com). If more powers belong to a certain transmitter the higher power is considered. In case the owner of the station announces different power than WRTH, then we counting with the official (real) transmitter power.
The geographical location of the contestant: France, Paris, Rue Parrot 2. in this case the QTH locator is JN18EU*
The received station: Voice of America, from the city of Iranawila CLN. The QTH locator of the transmitter: MJ97VM. In this case the distance between the two QTH locators: 8459,38 km. For the calculation the following program is used: NØUK’s Maidenhead Grid Distance & Bearing Calculator ****
The power of the transmitter: 250 kW
Score: 8459,38 / 250 = 33,84 points (rounded to 2 decimals) According to the information above it can be clearly seen that more points are given if the station is far from the contestant AND the transmitter power is low.
Therefor if someone can receive broadcast from a station of 10 kilowatts from the distance of 12000 km it worth 1200 points.
The final points are made up by the sum of the 10 receiving.
The contestant with the highest points wins the contest.
The contest has no monetary prize. The winner gets an elegantly designed, unique trophy addressed to his/her name. All contestants are posted a certificate according to result in the ranking.
In case of any questions about the rules, the parameters of the transmitter or anything else in connection with the competition, send us an e-mail and we try to respond asap. This opportunity is open before and during the competition.
The organizers wish good luck and outstanding DXs to all contestants.
Congratulations to SWLing Post reader, Audrius Simkunas from Lithuania, who was chosen at random from the comments on our contest post!
Many thanks to the kind folks at MFJ Enterprises who donated this prize and shipping that is worth well over $100! There aren’t many manufacturers and retailers who would agree to ship anywhere in the world.
What a response!
We had 165 comments/entries at 16:00 UTC yesterday when the contest ended. At that time we had a random number generator pull the comment number which lead us to Audrius.
This was a lot of fun, so we’re going to do more of these giveaways. If you have any ideas about a theme, contact me. While I enjoy making more challenging contests from time to time, I also love posting contests that are accessible to everyone regardless of their radio experience.
Here’s the description from the C.Crane product page:
Single Earbud Optimized For Voice
The CC Buds™ Solo single earpiece provides a unique advantage over traditional earbuds because it allows you to interact better with others while listening to radio, podcasts or audiobooks (your boss will love you). The integrated stereo to mono plug works with smartphones, radios, tablets, and most other audio devices.
The Solo can give you a safety advantage when running, biking, or walking because you are more likely to hear if danger approaches. The cable is Kevlar™ reinforced for maximum durability. It is perfect for scanner radio listening. Can work well for law enforcement when greater awareness is needed.
Audio is tuned for superior voice clarity. Included are three silicone and three compressible foam covers––sized small, medium, and large. The small covers usually fits a small ear comfortably. Standard 3.5 mm headphone jack. Cord Length 48″.
At first blush, the idea of a single earpiece smacks of vintage solid-state radios. I’ve a number of classic portables that were designed around a hard-plastic single earpiece–anyone else remember those?
In fact, my Sony ICF-5500W (above) even has a little compartment to house its custom earpiece.
The Sony ICF-550W’s unforgiving 1970s era earpiece.
In my youth, I carried a hard plastic single earpiece with me everywhere, especially at school, because it made listening to the radio and still having some situational awareness possible. [Unfortunately, I was known to listen to the radio during classes…what a renegade I was back then!]
If you, too, used those hard plastic earpieces, I doubt you’d have ever described them as “comfortable.” I never found them even remotely so. Those earpieces were functional, but the audio they produced was tinny and it was always difficult to keep them in my ear.
Think of the CC Buds Solo as the earpiece we all wish we could have had back then!
The Solo includes numerous earpiece options, a carry bag and owner’s manual.
Here are some of the CC Buds Solo pros:
The audio quality is superb for spoken word
The earpiece is very comfortable (see notes below)
The audio plug allows for mono listening on stereo devices (obviously a must in 2019)
Features a super-strong Kevlar-reinforced cord
Includes a clothing clip that acts as strain relief
Ships with a small, soft carry bag
So does the Solo deliver what it promises? Yes, it does.
What I really love is the number of soft silicon and foam earpieces that ship with the Solo: a total of seven options, when including the default earpiece.
If you’ve ever used in-ear earbuds, you’ll understand the importance of swapping out the soft earpieces to a size that best suits your ears––that is, to a size that makes for a comfortable seal.
The Solo might also be useful if your hearing is a bit better in one ear than the other.
Unlike single earpieces of old, it’s actually a pleasure to use the CC Buds Solo earpiece.
Before using the Solo, I would often wear only the right earpiece of my stereo earbuds when I needed to be able to hear the environment around me. This obviously isn’t ideal because the left earpiece would dangle, catch on my shirt or otherwise get in the way, and often lead to jerking out the right earpiece. Not to mention, it led to an awkward muffling (or altogether missing) of some of the sound in that other dangling earbud when stereo sound is split or processed differently for each ear. Clearly, not the best way to listen.
Note the adjustable clothing clip.
Now, when I’m driving, working, or walking, I can use the Solo clipped it to my shirt; it’s a more simple and annoyance-proof solution that allows for greater mobility and permits me to hear all of the intended sound.
I’ve only used the Solo for spoken word; primarily AM/SW broadcast band listening and for listening to podcasts.
These days, while I’ve been at work on a home renovation, podcasts have become an essential part of my day by helping me pass the time while painting, sanding, cleaning, mowing, doing yard work, or carrying out other tedious tasks. A good podcast definitely keeps it fun. The Solo makes podcast listening easy.
And of course, the Solo is also a great solution for listening to audio books, too.
I’ll admit, when I first saw the product announcement for the CC Buds Solo, I was curious if there’d still be a market for a mono earpiece. I suppose I proved it, myself, as I have found it quite useful when I don’t need the total isolation or stereo sound from two in-ear earbuds.
Please leave a comment with some of your favorite podcasts or radio shows for a chance to win! Next Tuesday (July 30, 2019) I’ll pick a winner at random from the comments section and ship them a brand new CC Buds Solo single earpiece courtesy of C.Crane!
The prize is an amazing piece of broadcast history: a 75 year old round plate glass window that was fitted in the central main door of the RCA senders at the Woofferton, UK, transmitting site in 1943. This prize was generously donated by SWLing Post contributor and friend, Dave Porter (G4OYX).
Please note: This contest will close on Friday December 14 at 12:00 UTC–you have until then to submit answers to all five questions. The winner will be announced once we verify contact with them. If you have entered this contest, please check your email this weekend.
If you read the SWLing Post email digest, you will need to view our prize questions on the web to see the embedded form. If the form below does not display, click here to open it in a new window.