I confess, I have well over twenty portable shortwave radios at the moment…So why am I still so enthusiastic when a new one arrives in the mailbox?
My Tecun PL-310ET just arrived, purchased from my favorite eBay seller, Anon-Co. And I just can’t wait to compare the PL-310ET with my PL-380.
Perhaps this will become another opportunity for a blind radio comparison by you, our community of listener-readers. Dare I say, a community equally enthusiastic?
By the way, I plan to publish the results of our recent weak-signal comparison on Tuesday of next week. I’m still impressed by your responses. But there’s still time to submit your vote. Stay tuned…!
The Tecsun PL-380 is an "ultralight" that has exceptional shortwave sensitivity and selectivity.
I have gone through the SWRI and tagged all portable shortwave radios that are considered “ultralights” by the ultralight “Definitions Committee.” Note that “ultralight dxing” is primarily a Mediumwave hobby, but you will find that many of the best performing ultralights are also capable, if not best-in-class shortwave receivers.
What are the attributes/guidelines for a radio to be considered an “ultralight”? Per the definitions committee:
- It is a simple shirt pocket-sized radio of not more than approximately 20 cubic inches.
- It is an entertainment-grade radio, as opposed to enthusiast’s radio. As such, it will usually not have AM synchronous detection, SSB clarification or other specialized features.
- It is readily available to the hobby in new or used markets at the time of its approval.
- It costs no more than $100 retail at the time of approval.
- It is primarily a radio. While it may have other features as well (MP3 recorder, etc.), the design and function should have radio reception as its focus.
- It is not a “novelty radio” such as Coca Cola Can radio, Mr. Potato Head, etc.
Each radio is individually approved before it is considered an ultralight.
The Tecsun PL-310, PL-380 and C.Crane CCRadio-SWP are three shortwave ultralights that I regularly use and are considered fine examples of ultralights.
Want to know more about ultralight dxing? Check out these resources: