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April 25, 2014

Comments

Stephen

I can maybe barely afford it at its current price ($55.55 as of 6:05am PDT on 4-26-2013), but I'm sure it'll go for FAR more than that by the time the auction's done 5 days 4 hours later.

What did these radios originally go for when they were new? I personally really don't like paying more for a vintage radio than its original retail price, except maybe in extremely limited circumstances. (And I don't know enough personally about this radio, for example personal experience, to justify that for me.)


Also how does it compare, for example, on mediumwave sensitivity using only the built-in loopstick antenna, vs. a Superradio, PR-D5, CCRadio, ICF-2010 with a 9-foot box loop, 1000-foot wire or 12-inch FSL, and on selectivity (especially skirt) and overload resistance vs. the Tecsun DSP radios?

There are stations I'd like to be able to listen to with a clean, clear signal at midday in summer (when the ionosphere is not skipping at all) that on my current radios (PL-398BT, Superadio III, etc) have absolutely NO trace of any carrier whatsoever, AND the static that would be there is completely obliterated by splatter from locals 10 khz away, even in the 1 kHz mode on the Tecsun. How well would the RF-2200 do with situations like that?

(For example, hearing a full-fidelity clean signal from 1080 KSCO Santa Cruz, CA, at 1 pm PDT on June 21 near the southwest corner of Columbia Park near Torrance, CA, if 1070 KNX had their IBOC off (but main analog transmitter operating normally), with no trace of splatter from KNX or 1090 XEPRS.)


Also, in CoolNovo (a version of Chrome that was recommended to me), I got a warning message when trying to sign in with one of the sites offered (typepad/facebook/twitter/google+/etc):

"You attempted to reach www.typekey.com, but instead you actually reached a server identifying itself as ssl2749.cloudflare.com. This may be caused by a misconfiguration on the server or by something more serious. An attacker on your network could be trying to get you to visit a fake (and potentially harmful) version of www.typekey.com.
You should not proceed, especially if you have never seen this warning before for this site."

Drive-In-Freak

It's not going to perform a miracle, but I will say that it's the best portable for AM.MW DX that I've ever had my hands on and that's saying something.
Better performance than the SRs? Yes...slightly. The only thing the SRs do better is the sound quality.
The Tecsun DSPs? No contest. They're not even in the same ballpark. Ok, so the filters on them are amazing, but their sensitivity just isn't on par with the big boys, yes even the bigger ones with the two speakers and the longer coil bar (PL-39x).
The PR-D5 is not bad, but it's a single conversion superhet with puny speakers.
The CCs overload. The 2200 does not.
ICF-2010 with a huge loop? That's a different animal. I'd say expect about the same out of an 2200 without needing the loop (the loop wouldn't help it anyway as it's as good as you can get in a portable).

Stephen

Ahh. Thanks for your comments. :) I see it went for around $150-160 or so, but I just don't have the money for things like that right now. If I did, it'd be probably within the range of what I think I'd pay for a semi-portable radio that's significantly better on sensitivity than the SR3 (no carrier detectable vs. comfortably listenable to a non-DXer on speaker while doing other activities) and selectivity than the Tecsun DSPs (ravaged by splatter from a local station 10 kHz away and 100 dB stronger, even in the 1 khz setting vs totally clean, splatter-free reception with near-full audio response, like 9.5 to 9.8 kHz or so).

I would like to be able to get my hands on one to try it someday, if possible. (I wouldn't know where to find one I could test in the San Diego, CA area, though, or Southern California.) Ideally I'd want to test it at home (where I do a lot of listening), near a local 50 kW transmitter site (next to the fence around an individual tower), and in some remote wilderness where the strongest groundwave signal is under something like 10 µV/m.


I have a SR3, and it seems ok on sensitivity. (I'm not as experienced as most DXers, though.)


As for the Tecsun DSPs, I was thinking of the filters, I know the sensitivity is sorely lacking. I'm thinking the size cabinet in the PL-39x series could, if properly designed, accomodate a loopstick with sensitivity comparable to the SR3, but in its current incarnation that'd be nearly impossible. (I think using a better quality ferrite and litz wire compared to what's in there could help, though.)


I briefly had a PR-D5 from Fry's, but took it back. I didn't like how quiet the volume was on weaker signals - like a difference between almost blowing out my eardrums (on stations that indicated around 80 dBµ on the Tecsun) vs straining to hear any sound (with 20 dBµ on the Tecsun).
On my PL-398BT I've discovered a way to even out the volume difference, which also does a couple other things. (I've also seen this described with a PL-310 model on a couple other places.) This makes faint stations and blank channels be just as loud as the strong locals, and it changes the apparent desense characteristics (for example, normal operation has 1110 KDIS coming in at 43/00 next to 1130 KSDO's 75/25 and 1170 KCBQ's 81/25, but doing that trick changes KDIS to about 22/15 or so, and much more listenable. It's audible in normal mode, but at a very reduced volume.)


I haven't tried a CC, but I've heard it overloads, and I don't think I'd want one. My Tecsun DSP radios overload too, just in a different way than the "traditional" definition of overload, from what I've experienced. Sure, they avoid having splatter go halfway across the band, and avoid images popping up on the wrong frequencies very well, but they seem to do it by turning down the gain at the front end. This has the consequence, in more severe cases, of making a medium-strength station inaudible on the Tecsun that would be easily listenable on some other radios.

As an example, I've taken some other radios, like the Panasonic RQ-SW10 (a mid-90s "Shockwave"-branded unit), and my Tecsun DSP radios, outside 1170 KCBQ's transmitter site. On the Panasonic (which has selectivity comparable to the Sony SRF-M37W, and is several dB less sensitive), 1070 KNX was easily listenable, with the splash from KCBQ being minimized when I "nulled" it, but on the Tecsuns, KNX is essentially undetectable even with the same loopstick orientation.

Also, when approaching the transmitter site's entrance (I didn't go inside the property though), the Tecsun started overloading on-frequency (distorted/clipped audio) from considerably farther away than did the Panasonic. The SRF-M37W also overloaded fairly far away, but the SRF-59, and IIRC Zenith Royal 705 hung on nicely right up to the gate, about 300 feet from the nearest tower and right in their ~200 kW "gain" pattern.


Wow, really? That would be pretty awesome sensitivity from just the built-in loopstick, if it would match an ICF-2010 (or SR3 or whatever) with a large outdoor loop. :)

When I was mentioning the big / high-gain loops, I was thinking of the several-hundred-to-near-thousand-mile reception that some DXers have gotten at midday on AM. Examples would be Bill of Radio-Timetraveller hearing 700 KALL in Quartzsite, AZ, with a 2-foot loop, or Bruce Carter hearing 50kW Chicago stations in Lubbock, TX.
I also know that Gary DeBock (of Puyallup, WA, who is active on IRCA & ultralightDX, and does DXpeditions to Oregon coast cliff sites, has built an even larger 9-foot loop. He has also built ferrite sleeve loop antennas which he says are very effective for their size, but are priced way out of my league. :) I don't recall him mentioning how far he's heard stations from at midday, though, on groundwave, although he's had some fairly distant midwinter skywave.

Based on other people's reception reports with smaller loops, I'm guessing that from my location near San Diego, CA, if I didn't have other stations in the way, I might possibly hear stations like 820 WBAP Ft Worth, TX, in the daytime, and I wonder if 540 XEWA or CBK might also be possible in the absence of other stations. (I'm not totally sure about that, and in that particular case there's a station in Mexicali on 820 in the way, as well as a Tijuana local on 540.)

Also I've seen upwards of 50 to 70 dB indicated gain on my DSP radios when combining a Select-A-Tenna with a utility groundwire. In practice that has not yet gotten me that much better S/N (or digging a station that far under the noise), because of powerline and other local noise, or other nearby stations overloading the radio's front end.


Dave P

This is interesting :

http://www.ebay.com/itm/221435161747?ru=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fsch%2Fi.html%3F_sacat%3D0%26_from%3DR40%26_nkw%3D221435161747%26_rdc%3D1

I actually like the idea, although this one might be a bit overdone. If he had left the chrome trim around the speaker and the knobs unpainted, I think it would look a lot sharper. Thoughts anyone?

herculodge

I don't mind it in red as long as it's a real super radio. I wonder what the bidding will be.

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