NASWA Journal Columns

Equipment Reviews, April 2006

Sherwood Engineering SE-3 MK III Synchronous Detector

Have you ever noticed in the receiver reviews in Passport To Worldband Radio that the reviewer may think that a particular radio is very good, but that the addition of the Sherwood SE-3 synchronous detector makes it great? What does the SE-3 do that makes it such a useful addition to an already good receiver? I had used an earlier version of the SE-3 with a JRC NRD-515 many years ago, but I decided to see what was different with the new model and see how it worked with more modern receivers.

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Easy Listening, April 2006

Substantial changes in BBCWS programming…and more frequencies disappearing

The BBC World Service is making significant schedule changes with the launch of the A-06 broadcast season on 26th March. Many of these changes were announced last summer, when the BBC announced plans to emphasize news and factual programming on weekdays, with arts, music and feature programming on the weekends. Along with these schedule changes, unfortunately, come further reductions in shortwave service targeting the Western hemisphere.

Frequency changes

All frequencies targeting South America and Central America have been closed down; the only remaining shortwave frequencies targeting the Americas is the following service targeting the Caribbean:

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Flashsheet 217, March 26, 2006

Editor: Ray Bauernhuber

Substitute Editor: Rich D’Angelo

I am pinch hitting for Ray once again as his computer has decided to take another week off! I am not certain when Ray’s computer will return from this unannounced vacation, but when it does Ray will be back in action. Therefore, better send your logs to Ray at the usual address and myself for next week. Thanks! … Rich

Next Deadline: Sunday, April 2, 2006 at 1700 UTC (1200 EST).

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NASWA Notes, February 2006

Speaking of time marching on it is that time of the year when serious Winter SWL Festival plans need to be made. Yes, once again the gathering of the faithful will meet in Kulpsville, PA to celebrate the great hobby of radio in all its forms. This will be our 19th reunion of the best radio people in the world so you do not want to miss it. Watch Rich Cuff’s column for updates and progress reports on developments. Check the Journal for the registration form. You have had plenty of warning so we expect to see you there in March.

Speaking of the Winter SWL Festival, the legends of the FEST are the infamous “scanner scum.” As the name implies, these guys are into scanner listening and provide quite a lot of color to the festivities. Uncle Skip Arey informs us that “the Scum now has a web presence at http://www.scannerscum.com/ .” Warning, this website isn’t for children or the faint of heart. One picture is worth a thousand “oh my gosh” expressions.

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Pirate Radio Report, February 2006

Hello and welcome to the February 2006 edition of The Pirate Radio Report. The level of activity which had remained quite high through New Year has started to taper off, but we are still pleased to bring you a nice crop of logs. The Winterfest in Kulpsville, PA will be here before you know it! I plan to be there and help out George Zeller with the Pirate Forum. Hope to see you there as well.

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Kim’s Column, January 2006

[Editor’s note: We were unable to run this column in the January NASWA Journal due to space limitations. We present it here on the NASWA web site to prevent it from going unread.]

Best quote of the month

“Is it arrogance or honesty that drives Mr. Chirac to indicate that his ‘news’ channel (CFII) will be the de facto voice of the French republic? Or is it simply blindness to the idea that world over, what most people want from their news is simply the facts and to be left free to make up their own minds?”

And that really is the essence of successful international broadcasting. Report simply the facts and let the audience make up its own mind. If the broadcasting country’s policies are wise and virtuous, the audience will tend to make up its mind in a manner satisfactory to the broadcasting country. The alternative is propaganda, a naïve form of international broadcasting. The audience immediately recognizes it for what it is.

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Equipment Reviews, January 2006

The Eton E1XM Portable Receiver

This is probably the longest anticipated product release in the history of the radio industry. The Grundig Satellit 900 was announced in the 1996 edition of Passport To World Band Radio, with an anticipated release date of “early 1996”. It was to be the replacement for the Satellit 700. Here we are almost ten years later with (finally!) the introduction of the Eton E1, which has a physical appearance almost identical to the early prototypes of the Satellit 900. Interestingly, this renamed radio will receive satellite radio, a form of broadcasting that didn’t exist when the original Satellits were produced. It is produced by Eton, which took over Grundig’s radio line and the new receiver is manufactured in India. Allegedly, the R. L. Drake Co. was involved with the engineering of the radio, which I think is entirely likely as it shares several features with the Satellit 800 and Drake appears to be providing service support. The street price is $500. Was it worth the wait? Is it worth the price?—let’s see.

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Shortwave Center, January 2006

As we enter another new year, please accept my very best wishes for a happy, healthy and prosperous one for you and yours. Let me also put in a word to the radio gods for improving propagation conditions. We’ve languished at the bottom of the solar cycle long enough, I say!

What a difference a month makes! Your SWC editor was a little under the weather and a little too snowed under at work last month resulting in no December column. Sincerest apologies. However, as you will see as you peruse the next few pages, we’ve come roaring back with two exciting club announcements from Ralph Brandi and Mike Wolfson, along with an excellent preliminary review of the groundbreaking and long-awaited Eton E1-XM by George Zeller. Ralph, Mike and George are all NASWA members and their contributions to this month’s column are greatly appreciated! How about you lending us a hand—your writing hand! Send your much anticipated submission for this column to your editor via e-mail or postal mail using the addresses on the masthead.

All that’s left for you to do is sit back, relax, read and enjoy!

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Scoreboard, December 2005

This month we are highlighting our members’ totals from Asia. This is your chance to show everyone how well you are doing. The next deadline is February 15th for the March 2006 issue of the Journal. The spotlight will be on Europe.

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Pirate Radio Report, December 2005

Hello and welcome to the December 2005 edition of The Pirate Radio Report. I apologize for no column last month, but in order to make it up to you, the month we will have two pages jam packed with logs. Halloween this year brought good propagation and a few new stations.

Also, we will be starting to use logs submitted to the NASWA Flashsheet. Read on!

Many thanks to the following contributors: Ralph Brandi-NJ, Joe Wood-TN, George Zeller-OH.

Alfa Lima International, from Holland, heard on 15069.42 kHz at 1603 UTC with techopop, many IDs on October 16th. [Brandi-NJ]

Captain Morgan, heard on November 6th at 2105 UTC on 6925 kHz. Excellent show from the good Captain! IDs at 2107, 2121, 2127, and 2130 as “You’re in the pirate zone with Captain Morgan.” Music included” “Get Ready” by Rare Earth, “Mama Told Me” by Three Dog Night, “Captain Morgan” by Garth Brooks (several repeats), “Big Airliner” by Steve Miller, “You’re so Vain” by Carly Simon, and others. OM announcer in with talk on building radios and listening to pirate radio. Also gave an uncopied address for reports. This is the first time that I have heard this station with any type of announcements other than IDs. [Wood-TN]

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