Tag Archives: Tecsun

Tecsun PL-660: A simple hack to scan the air band

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Bruce F, who writes:

HI Thomas, I thought I would put this idea out to your site – in case it isn’t already there. It’s a brilliant solution to the apparent lack of a working Air Band scan function on the Tecsun PL-660.  Note – I did not come up with this idea, but came across it in a Yahoo group.

It IS possible to scan the Air Band on the PL660, as long as you have picked out WHICH Air Band frequencies are in use in your area. There are websites which list these frequencies for each airport:

Here’s how to set up the PL-660:

  1. Pick an empty page in the Memory.
  2. Put in a shortwave frequency in the first empty space; the “00” slot.
  3. Then fill in the succeeding spaces on that page with the Air Band frequencies you’ve chosen.
  4. Now go back to the “00” slot and hold down the scan button.

Works on my set!

What a cool trick!  I’ve lent my PL-660 to a friend, but as soon as I get it back, I’ll also try this trick by setting up a page dedicated to my local aviation frequencies!

Thanks, Bruce!

For Sale: My Tecsun PL-600

>>>>>UPDATE: This radio has been sold!  Thanks for your interest!<<<<<

I’m in the process of thinning the herd around here at the SWLing Post HQ! I have dozens of portable radios that I rarely use–many I keep solely for review comparisons and benchmarking.

I’ve always loved the PL-600, but I rarely turn it on these days. I have the PL-660, PL-680, PL-880 and a number of other similar portables for review comparisons.

I used to lug this receiver around quite a bit–somewhere in my travels I scratched the display a bit.

It doesn’t hinder the ability to read the display–not cracked, just scratched–but it’ll turn off someone looking for a perfect specimen for sure. Indeed I’m sure there are other light scratches to be found.

It comes with the original box, soft case, earphones, power supply and manual. Essentially, the full original package.

This unit, of course, works beautifully. In fact, I turned it on for the first time in a few months and check out what was on frequency! So–BONUS!–if you’re a spy, this might be your dream radio.

I want this to be a good deal for someone, so I’ll ship to the first person who offers $40 or more (not too much more, okay?). Free shipping via the USPS. Payment via PayPal.

If interested, just contact me via email.

>>>>>UPDATE: This radio has been sold!  Thanks for your interest!<<<<<

I’d prefer not to ship internationally as it often involves a headache and would incur additional costs which I can’t predict. 🙂 Thanks for understanding.

All I ask is that you put this little radio on the air!

Rolf’s PL-680 modification allows external antenna on LW and MW

The Tecsun PL-680

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Rolf Snijder, who writes:

I did a modification today on the Tecsun PL-680 [which allows for an] external antenna on LW and MW.

The internal ferriet is also working, but on my active loop, MW and LW is now working !

So far away stations I can now receive on this portable radio.
It is only a560 pF capacitor added!

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

It works on LW and MW now with this mod.

FM is less now I think, maybe I will put it on a switch so I can turn it off.
And now also the ferrite is still working, so I hope to find a solution for that.

Many thanks for sharing your modification and photos, Rolf! Check out Rolf’s other PL-680 mod by clicking here.

Tecsun PL-300 series modification: disabling soft mute

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Troy Riedel, who shares the following tip. Troy writes:

While surfing the Net I found the following procedure that is said to “disable soft muting in Tecsun 300-series radios”.

I have a PL-390 and this has indeed seemed to work on it but I didn’t notice a difference with my PL-365.

Since I just found & tried this, I don’t know if this procedure must be repeated each time you use the radio? Maybe [Post readers] have heard of this before and/or have experience with it?

Here is the “reported” [supposed?] procedure that worked for the PL-390:

To disabling “Soft Mute” on Tecsun 300-series radios:

1. Select a shortwave frequency, preferably where there is no stations transmitting.
2. Tune down the frequency range with the dial, don’t tune up or it won’t work
3. Press the VF Scan button to let it automatically tune down
4. Tune down with the dial to stop the automatic scan. If the background noise is higher, then the “soft mute” / “dynamic squelch” has been disabled.

Thank you, Troy! I was unaware of this modification, but it seems easy enough to implement.

Post readers: Anyone have experience using this mod across the Tecsun 300-series receivers? Please comment!

Tecsun PL-680: Rolf touts enhanced performance using PL-660 mod

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Rolf Snijder, who writes:

I have made the same modification to the Tecsun PL-680, that was done [by many on the] PL-660 earlier.

The PL-680 is now a great radio; I think now one of the best! I do not own a PL-660, so I cannot compare.

Photo detail

Overview of modification.

For disable soft mute you can see the 2 joints and you must scratch a path on the print near the switch. (same on a PL-660)

Closeup of joint #1 (click to enlarge)

Closeup of joint #2 (click to enlarge)

With the tone switch [on the left side panel of radio] you can turn the muting on and off. On FM I need to set it on for better results, but on LW MW and SW always off!

Frequency adjust is with the pot: adj1391 in the right corner. (for the 1 kHz off freq)

Click to enlarge.

Hope I can help someone with this on your great site.

Greetings,

Rolf Snijder
Netherlands

Many thanks for sharing this PL-680 mod, Rolf! This seems like a simple enough project and one that can be undone if you aren’t pleased with the results.

Post readers: Please comment if you’ve made this modification to your PL-680 or PL-660 or if you have other successful modifications to share!