Quality AM radio

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Does anyone have a recomendation for a quality AM receiver? I have a  
cabin in the low Sierras and have trouble receiving AM. I would prefer  
one that would not require an outside antenna.
Thanks,
CP


Re: Quality AM radio

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I live in a rural area, but it sounds like your cabin is even more
rural. No matter what kind of radio you get, you will not get many
stations without an outdoor antenna. The good news, for AM, all you
really need is a piece of wire strung outside. 20 or more feet of wire
between a few sturdy trees works fine, then run it into the house by
drilling a 1/4" hole and caulk around it once it's inside. Pretty much
any sort of wire will work outdoors, insulated or bare. Use some
insulators on the ends. I'd use insulated wire coming in thru the wall.  

If your AM radio has no antenna connector, but has a telescoping
antenna, just coil the wire around the telescoping ant numerous times. I
do this in my barns, because they are metal buildings. Without the
outdoor wire, I'd get no stations. That wire works for FM too, but not
quite as good.

If you use trees, be sure to leave some slack in the wire. Trees sway in
winds, and if the wire is tight, it may break.  


Re: Quality AM radio
Thanks all.
CP


Re: Quality AM radio
On Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 10:42:32 AM UTC-4, MOP CAP wrote:
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first depends what you mean by quality,
able to hear weak stations?
or high fidelity?

in either case, the big problem with AM is electrical interference which will sound like buzz noise usually.

if you are out in the woods, your own stuff will be the only source so you have a chance to control it

light dimmer, wall warts,  fluorescent lights computers, all these are potential sources of electrical interference.

use a battery operated radio and turn off the electricity and you will be surprised what you can hear especially at night.



m

  

Re: Quality AM radio
Another thing about crappy AM is bandwidth. Normally it is narrow and will  
not reproduce the highs well. I guess they were going for selectivity and l
ower noise. With FM the frequency response remains but a narrow bandwidth I
F will increase distortion. Some high end FM tuners had switchable bandwidt
h which allowed for the lower distortion (especially in stereo) when set to
 wide and better selectivity when set to narrow. I remember seeing an AM wi
th that feature but for the life of me can't remember what make or model. I
 think it had shortwave.  

If you want talk radio shortwave is the way to go, especially the forbidden
 band. I don't know exactly what frequencies are forbidden but all you have
 to do  is look at the in the stores or read the specs, you will find frequ
ency ranges missing. The politically incorrect go there, like American Diss
ident Voices. Those bands are omitted ostensibly because the programming is
 US based and intended for non-domestic audiences.  

The same FCC are the ones that mandated tuners must have both AM and FM. Th
is is one reason, people with separate tuners want high fidelity and are no
t concerned with AM.

Re: Quality AM radio
On Friday, October 13, 2017 at 2:51:46 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

 I remember seeing an AM with that feature but for the life of me can't remember what make or model. I think it had shortwave.  

The Zenith RD7000Y has that feature as well as a BFO.  

Peter Wieck  
Melrose Park, PA  

Re: Quality AM radio

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The only "forbidden" frequencies (as far as radio receiption goes)
I've ever heard of, are the UHF frequencies used by the
older-generation (analog) cellular phone systems.  The FCC prohibited
(and still prohibits) making general-purpose radio receivers that can
tune to them, reportedly due to influence from the cellphone companies
who could then claim that these phone systems were "secure".

As far as shortwave goes... I have never heard of the FCC, or anyone
in this country somehow "forbidding" radios from receiving any of
these frequencies.  Just doing a quick look at multi-band receivers on
the market today (a quick web search), most of those which offer
shortwave at all have continuous coverage from below 2 MHz up to 22
MHz or more (many to 30 MHz which is the nominal end of the "high
frequency" radio range and hence where "short wave" is usually
considered to end).

Above 30 MHz, long-distance (e.g. international) signal transmission
is difficult and unpredictable... it depends a lot on the state of the
ionosphere, which depends on the solar cycle and time of day.  

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Can you cite the regulation in which they actually mandated this?
I've never heard of it.

Ditto for the "forbidden frequencies" - where are the laws or
regulations which "forbid" them?



Re: Quality AM radio
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regulations which "forbid" them? "

Poor choice of words, there probably is no actual law or regulation, but fo
r some reason manufacturers omit those frequencies.  

There is something though because years ago the FCC was considering pulling
 a station's license because their programming "appeared to be intended for
 domestic audiences". Need I mention that the station was full of dissident
s who were very critical of the US government ?

Re: Quality AM radio
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Probably because it costs something (in engineering and in dollars) to
implement a "DC to daylight" design.  The manufacturers don't really
have any incentive to do this, and include the "missing octave" (above
the medium-wave AM band, and below the start of HF at around 3 MHz),
because very few of their customers care about this, because there
isn't any commercial or social programming using these frequencies.
The semiconductor companies which make specialized ICs for receiving
middle-wave AM, VHF FM, etc. probably don't make chips specific to
these frequencies because there's no commercial demand.

If you want a radio which receives these, they're certainly available
"off the shelf".  "Communications receiver" radios like the Icom
IC-R8500 will do this very well indeed - that one receives everything
from 100 kHz to 2 GHz, except (in the U.S.) for those cellphone band
frequencies I mentioned.

These receivers aren't cheap, of course.

Or, build any of numerous LF/MF receiver designs out there on the
net... a simple MW AM superhet design can be adapted easily enough, or
use an NE602 and make a single-chip direct-conversion receiver (add a
transistor or two to drive a loudspeaker).

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If they were trying to abuse an "international short-wave" station
license to do domestic broadcasting, I'm not surprised.  The FCC
regulations on stations for those frequencies are very clear - they're
to be used only for broadcasting programming to other countries.  You
have to have at least 50 kilowatts of transmitter power, _and_ a
directional antenna with at least 10 dB of gain (which means "big!")
aimed at the specific area your broadcast is intended to serve.

The FCC points out that the costs are high (maybe a million dollars)
and it's not a very efficient way to reach international audiences
these days.

The frequency uses are coordinated between the FCC, and other ITU
countries, to minimize interference in these broadcasts between
countries.  I haven't read the ITU regs (a treaty to which the
U.S. has been signatory for a lot of decades) but I strongly suspect
that the international agreements for these frequencies _forbid_
signatory countries using them for in-country broadcasting... there
are other frequencies set aside for that.

The FCC's regulations are quite clear:

§ 73.788 Service; commercial or sponsored programs.

(a) A licensee of an international broadcast station shall render only
 an international broadcast service which will reflect the culture of
 this country and which will promote international goodwill,
 understanding, and cooperation. Any program solely intended for and
 directed to an audience in the continental United States does not meet
 the requirements for this service.

These aren't new regs;  this section dates back to 1963 and was last
amended in 1973.

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No, you don't need to mention it, because it's really rather
irrelevant.  The FCC regulations apply to _any_ US organization that
wants to set up an international broadcast station.  Dissidents have a
right to equal treatment before the law, _and_ they have an equal
obligation to respect the rules (or step up and face the consequences
for not doing so).

So, if that group of dissidents applies for an international broadcast
authorization, asked for a frequency assignment, and then tried to
"re-purpose" their station in a way which is _specifically_ prohibited
by the regulations, it's not surprising they got slapped... and I have
no particular sympathy for them.  I expect a similar thing would
happen to any other "international" broadcaster that tried a similar
stunt.





Re: Quality AM radio
On Sat, 14 Oct 2017 17:25:58 -0700, Dave Platt wrote:

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So what?  American domestic SW stations have been broadcasting to a  
domestic audience since at least around 1970 when I was entertained by HL  
Hunt sponsored right wing propaganda on radio station WINB.

It reached a peak around the Y2K period when overtly racist neo-nazi  
babblers could be found among the end time preachers, conspiratorialists,  
and other kooks of domestic SW radio.

Domestic SW broadcasting has been a real world fact, if not a legal fact,  
for decades.

I'm not aware of the FCC enforcing any speech codes or domestic SW  
broadcasting requirements in modern times.  Maybe it's not enforceable?  
I dunno.



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Kookcasters don't have the budget for their own radio station.  They buy  
time on brokered SW stations.  A broadcaster like the Jeremiah 33:3  
Ministries guy has been kicked off at least a couple of stations for not  
paying his bills.  A real loss for those who need to learn every kooky  
detail on the Masonic/Alien/David Rockefeller Conspiracy which controls  
EVERYTHING.

I haven't heard ADV in a while.  Sometimes broadcasters go vagabond,  
sometimes they're just gone.

Re: Quality AM radio
On Sat, 14 Oct 2017 08:46:13 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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There were a few cheap AM/FM/SW receivers on the market in the 1960's
that used 10.7MHz for the first IF frequency.  Trying to listen to
anything within about 2 MHz of 10.7MHz was difficult because of
spurious receiver responses from the AM broadcast band.  So, there was
a hole in the tuning range from about 9MHz to 12.3MHz.  Is that what
you're talking about?

There was also a move during the AM stereo wars (approx 1980 - 1995)
to require AM stereo in all automotive radios.  Manufacturers were
worried that there might not be a mass market for AM stereo (which was
proven correct) and that the general public was better served by
having AM stereo shoved down their throat.  Similar requirements have
been proposed for satellite radio, and HD FM Radio.  To their credit,
the FCC has rejected all such proposals.

Back to the "Quality AM Radio"...  To deal with complaints about lousy
mono AM quality, the AMAX certification program was established:
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AMAX
  "According to the EIA and National Association of Broadcasters,
  tuners and receivers that are qualified to carry the AMAX stereo
  certification logo will capture the widest audio frequency  
  response and highest quality stereo separation of AM stereo
  broadcasts that modern technology can offer. In addition,  
  AMAX tuners and receivers will capture all of the fidelity
  transmitted from monaural AM stations. Its audio response  
  is more than two octaves greater than a standard AM radio."

So, is your favorite AM stereo tuner AMAX certified?  
<http://pdf.datasheetcatalog.com/datasheet/motorola/MC13122P.pdf
(See Pg 6)  Notice that the AMAX spec required a wide/narrow bandwidth
IF switch in order to get decent audio quality.  I couldn't find
anything on how or where to get something certified.

Stations still doing AM stereo:
<http://meduci.com/stations.html
Better quality AM receiver retrofit (using C-QuAM modulation):
<http://meduci.com





--  
Jeff Liebermann     snipped-for-privacy@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
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Re: Quality AM radio
wrote:

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Some more detail on AMAX, improvements to AM broadcasting, and AM
stereo:
<http://www.radioworld.com/am_king

--  
Jeff Liebermann     snipped-for-privacy@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
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Re: Quality AM radio
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I've never heard of it. "

The both AM and FM thing I remember distinctly due to my exposure to high f
idelity. I'm pretty sure it was in the 1970s. A quick Google does not turn  
up anything on it though, but that is not uncommon. Much of this older stuf
f was simply never archived. Suffice it to say I didn't make it  up. I didn
't imagine it.  

I wonder if I could at least get the date from archives of High Fidelity ma
gazine, to which I subscribed for a time. They used Hirsch-Houck (sp) labs  
to test everything and though AM was no big deal they tested it anyway to s
ee if the manufacturer was lying in the manual. Of course the consistently  
found poor performance, but then they didn't lie about it. The AM section w
as there, I bet some people never ever used it.  

These old laws and regulations can be hard to find. We've heard about the c
razy laws like against French kissing in public, that you can only beat you
r Wife on Sunday and all that, but that info is from specialty sites. To fi
nd them on an actual government site can be nerve wracking.

Re: Quality AM radio
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I find this quite curious, because I subscribed to those same
magazines (Stereo Review, High Fidelity, Audio, the Sensible Sound)
through the same era, and never read or heard anything about that sort
of requirement by the FCC.

I've never seen a reference to such a requirement, anywhere.  I've
never seen a receiver, tuner, or integrated circuit described as
complying with a "Part XXX" requirement of this sort (while they're
often tagged as complying with Part 15 rules for RF interference).

I've never heard tell of a manufacturer being cited for failing to
comply, or a bunch of illegal FM-only radios/tuners being seized by
the FCC, or any company fined for selling them.

And, I know there were a bunch of FM-only tuners and radios being made
and sold through that era... Kloss made several FM-only radios, Scott
and others made FM-only tuners, I've still got a Dynaco FM-3 in my
collection (no AM).

So, I'm not sure what you read.  It's possible the FCC may have been
_considering_ such a mandate (possibly someone in the AM broadcast
industry filed a petition to ask for a rule-making of this sort) and
this was mentioned in the magazine, but I don't think I've ever seen
any evidence that such a mandate was ever actually implemented.  There
_ought_ to have been plenty of traces, visible over the years and even
now, and I haven't seen any.

If it had been I suspect that it might have been unenforceable, as
being outside the FCC's authorized regulatory powers.  The FCC has a
lot of authority over what can be _transmitted_, and how, but a lot
less over what can be _received_ (and I think even less over the
question of what must be _required_ to be receivable).

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Please pass the info along if you do find it - I'm quite curious.

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I suspect _lots_ of people never used it.  Even by the 70s, FM (with
its better performance and stereo capability) had pretty much kicked
AM's butt, as far as quality sound distribution goes.

The presence of the AM section was pretty much a "check-box" item for
most buyers, I think.  They expected it to be there (because they were
used to it) and they'd consider a receiver not having it to be
"inferior" and thus less worthy of purchase.  That's probably why the
manufacturers (1) continued to include it and (2) didn't bother to
make it a good one - it had to be there to keep their product from
losing sales, but its quality was pretty much irrelevant to those
sales.  

The devices which didn't have it, were ones which were being marketed
to an audiophile crowd, I think, where people wanted the best FM sound
for their dollar and didn't care a fig about AM.

Re: Quality AM radio
On 10/14/2017 8:02 PM, Dave Platt wrote:
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Don't hold your breath.
jureb6006 is full of unsubstantiated nutter
conspiracies.



--  
Jeff-1.0
wa6fwi
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Re: Quality AM radio
On 10/11/2017 11:44 PM, MOP CAP wrote:
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Hello, and you want a radio of requisite sensitivity so you can enjoy  
the "quality' of AM radio? Can you parse languages other than English?  
Just kidding.  In addition to the advice already provided by others, you  
might want to check with a seller like C.C. Crane.  I assumed by "AM"  
you meant the medium wave (535-1700 kHz) band.  A multi-band  
"communications" type receiver (with an RF gain control) might be a  
solution but likely isn't the least expensive one if bought new.  In any  
event, reception using a simple, old-fashioned long wire antenna will  
most often provide better performance than a built-in telescoping whip  
antenna.  Another possibility is to use a passive (no batteries  
required) variable capacitor tuned loop antenna.  These can be built or  
bought, can be used indoors, and I've seen them dramatically improve the  
MW band performance of inexpensive transistor portables.  The radio is  
simply positioned at the base of the loop (radio's internal ferrite loop  
becomes inductively coupled to the antenna so no wire connection to the  
radio is required), the radio is tuned in the vicinity of the AM station  
of interest, and the loop capacitor is adjusted for maximum signal.  
Sometimes the radio needs to be slightly repositioned to optimize the  
radio-to-loop coupling.  And finally you can rotate the radio and tuned  
loop together for the strongest reception.  Please let us known what  
works for you.  And one last thing: Don't rule out the use of FM  
(assuming you like whatever program content is being offered) as I've  
seen situations where AM reception is lousy but FM works.  Sincerely,

--  
J. B. Wood                e-mail: arl snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com

Re: Quality AM radio
J.B. Wood wrote:
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Right, the AM band, which, regarding radio, is an abbreviation for 'Amplitude Modulation' as opposed to FM (Frequency Modulation). Unless you confuse AM (Ante Meridian) here in this thread to mean morning-time only radio use.

Re: Quality AM radio
On Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 11:44:10 PM UTC-4, MOP CAP wrote:
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Mpffff... This is an easy one. If you are looking, primarily, for good rece
ption over top-notch sound (mostly wasted on AM anyway), and this is to be  
a single-purpose device, look for something like a solid-state GE "Super Ra
dio" or similar. They are fair-enough sounding and far better than average  
at AM DXing capabilities. Low in cost for very good results.  

http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-GE-SUPERADIO-SUPER-RADIO-LONG-RANGE-AM-FM-H
I-PERFORMANCE-VERY-NICE-/401419473964?hash=item5d7677142c:g:e9AAAOSwbRJZv
vX8    I keep one of these at our summer house that is no slouch at all. Th
e AM band is pretty busy, especially at night.  

A step up from there would be a multi-band radio such as a Zenith TransOcea
nic. Of those, the ne-plus-ultra would be the RD7000Y - and why that one? A
ll silicon, has the tunable weather band, and will give you some amusing sh
ortwave capacity.  

https://www.ebay.com/dsc/i.html?_sacat=0&LH_TitleDesc=1&_udlo=&_udhi
=&_ftrt90%1&_ftrv=1&_sabdlo=&_sabdhi=&_samilow=&_samihi=&_sad
is15%&_stpos19%027&_sop12%&_dmd=1&_ipg20%0&_nkw=Zenith+RD7000Y&
_ex_kw=&_in_kw=1   One of these has lived at my work desk for over 20 y
ears.  

Hard-Core would be a Communications Receiver, something in the Hallicrafter
s, Collins or National lines - which are a whole different can of worms, do
 want an outside antenna, and likely will contain tubes rather than transis
tors.  

And, one of these will truly separate fly-poop from pepper. Give it an 80'  
longwire and you will be getting AM from Hawaii - or thereabouts.  

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA

Re: Quality AM radio
On Thursday, 12 October 2017 12:32:06 UTC+1, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com  wrote:
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ception over top-notch sound (mostly wasted on AM anyway), and this is to b
e a single-purpose device, look for something like a solid-state GE "Super  
Radio" or similar. They are fair-enough sounding and far better than averag
e at AM DXing capabilities. Low in cost for very good results.  
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-HI-PERFORMANCE-VERY-NICE-/401419473964?hash=item5d7677142c:g:e9AAAOSwbRJ
ZvvX8    I keep one of these at our summer house that is no slouch at all.  
The AM band is pretty busy, especially at night.  
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eanic. Of those, the ne-plus-ultra would be the RD7000Y - and why that one?
 All silicon, has the tunable weather band, and will give you some amusing  
shortwave capacity.  
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i=&_ftrt90%1&_ftrv=1&_sabdlo=&_sabdhi=&_samilow=&_samihi=&_sa
dis15%&_stpos19%027&_sop12%&_dmd=1&_ipg20%0&_nkw=Zenith+RD7000Y
&_ex_kw=&_in_kw=1   One of these has lived at my work desk for over 20  
years.  
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ers, Collins or National lines - which are a whole different can of worms,  
do want an outside antenna, and likely will contain tubes rather than trans
istors.  
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' longwire and you will be getting AM from Hawaii - or thereabouts.  
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The old Vega/Ocean radios are very cheap dx sets. Some mericans might not l
ike their origins. But don't worry, they don't run Kaspersky.


NT

Re: Quality AM radio
On Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 9:09:19 AM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

The old Vega/Ocean radios are very cheap dx sets. Some mericans might not l
ike their origins. But don't worry, they don't run Kaspersky.  

I keep one of these as well - a small hand-held - and, yes, it does very we
ll. Competitive, but not better than my Siemens RK747. They are not easy to
 find in good condition, nor do they wear well. I paid $2 + about 4 hours o
f very persnickety work fixing the battery compartment and re-securing the  
guts on mine. Pure blind luck that it worked at all - but it does, and well
.  

https://www.doctsf.com/grandlivre/fiche.php?ref40%940 (not mine).  

But if we are going into Euro-Exotics, the very best consumer-grade DX radi
o I have in all bands is this one:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Grundig-Satellit-700-World-Receiver-FM-SW-Radio-/16
2699281459?hash=item25e1a20433:g:QTUAAOSwls5Y6-Vk  

The second best is the Zenith RD7000Y (and the best for sound overall). Fol
lowed by the Grundig YB500.  

http://www.ebay.com/itm/GRUNDIG-YATCH-BOY-500-YB500-RADIO-IN-BOX-AND-PAPERW
ORK-/142532921023?hash=item212f9fc6bf:g:pqEAAOSwdKZZ2tbY    

Point being that the smaller radios have smaller sound - if that is a consi
deration.  

Repeat: Communications Receivers are a whole different thing. If the OP wan
ts to pull stations from the moon or Mars, that should definitely be a cons
ideration.

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