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FM Radio maybe ?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

So I been thinking about getting an FM Radio to listen to at times.  I already have an OTA setup (for TV) and I'm looking at the pole going "Hm.. I might as well put up a FM antenna." , but I'm not sure where to start.

 

I wouldn't know any el cheapo radios that would allow for a Coax 75 ohm connection ?

 

Also, would I want to purchase a cheap antenna like

http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=fm6&d=antennacraft-by-radioshack-fm6-6-element-fm-antenna-%28fm6%29 ? Or would I better off just getting a small little ole FM radio that could with a simple up and down antenna from inside the house ?

 

Also, would I need to get a preamp with an FM trap on the OTA to stop the FM antenna from interfering ? Or that wouldn't be an issue ?


Edited by RodgerM - 9/15/13 at 5:20pm
post #2 of 14

My phone receives FM. It gets quite a few channels in stereo locally. It uses the headphone cable as an antenna. I sometimes listen to it when walking the dogs if my interest has been caught by something on the car radio. I also have 3 or 4 redundant car radios in the loft with AM & FM. You might have one or two, or an acquaintance might.

 

So it depends on your locality, and the reception conditions, your taste and your enthusiasm. You might want a multi-element yagi with a rotator, a mast-head LNA and a high class receiver, or you might be satisfied with a phone and an adapter cable.

 

w

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 

The FM Fool lookup is broke right now.. dang.

post #4 of 14

Get a http://www.magnumdynalab.com/Magnum Dynalabs tuner.

post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 

Those all look to be well in to the $100+ range.  Making this "Ah, lets see what I can find for $50" project go from "something to do" to "wallet strain" .

post #6 of 14

We also have a g'zillion radio stations on the satellite TV, plus DAB. Not everybody likes it, but I find the quality acceptable and my wife plays the DAB radio in the kitchen from choice above the FM/AM.

 

Then there's the Internet, 18 channels of BBC radio, fed into the system from the computer soundcard, or channels from all around the world. We're really spoiled for choice. I don't know if you can see the BBC in the US, but I just tried ABC from Australia and the quality is good, with no glitching. I have optical fiber broadband tho'. I have a Behringer UCA202 plugged into the USB on this particular computer.

 

Or perhaps you fancy a bit of DIY @ $6.40? http://dx.com/p/tea5767-fm-radio-module-for-electronic-diy-red-black-225121

 

w

post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wakibaki View Post
 

We also have a g'zillion radio stations on the satellite TV, plus DAB. Not everybody likes it, but I find the quality acceptable and my wife plays the DAB radio in the kitchen from choice above the FM/AM.

 

Then there's the Internet, 18 channels of BBC radio, fed into the system from the computer soundcard, or channels from all around the world. We're really spoiled for choice. I don't know if you can see the BBC in the US, but I just tried ABC from Australia and the quality is good, with no glitching. I have optical fiber broadband tho'. I have a Behringer UCA202 plugged into the USB on this particular computer.

 

Or perhaps you fancy a bit of DIY @ $6.40? http://dx.com/p/tea5767-fm-radio-module-for-electronic-diy-red-black-225121

 

w

hmm.. I wonder if there are any PCI or USB FM tuners for the PC like there are ATSC tuners (OTA tuners) ?

 

edit: It seems there is, but they got some bad reviews. http://www.amazon.com/D-Link-DSB-R100-USB-Radio-Software/dp/B0000488VF/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top


Edited by RodgerM - 9/16/13 at 4:16pm
post #8 of 14

Except for the Magnum Dynalab ($$$$) that Avro listed, you'd do a lot better with a tuner from Ebay.  I have three Sony J75's, each of which I got for less than $100.  The old tuners - with a good antenna - have sound quality that's far superior to modern tuner equipment.  There just isn't a market anymore for a very-high quality FM tuner.  It's mostly FM stations themselves that purchase the Magnum Dynalabs, as a check on their signal quality.

 

I also have the Sony HD Radio tuner (XDR-F1HD) that they made recently for a few years.  People swore by them, but my J75's run rings around it.  Unfortunately, the price went up by 4 or 5 times when they quit making them.  I paid about $75 for mine new, but now they're $300-$500.  There again, you can do lots better on ebay if you're smart about it and follow these guys' advice and reviews:

http://www.fmtunerinfo.com/ - this is one of the finest vintage audio sites in existence.

 

You'll find very few FM-specialized antennas, either.  A TV one wastes a lot of the elements because the old VHF frequencies didn't exactly overlap with FM.  I have this one in the attic and it has superior signal output compared to a lot of the omni's or whips (it's also very cheap):

http://www.amazon.com/Antennacraft-Triple-Driven-Directional-Hd-Radio-Antenna/dp/B003EB03OA/ref=sr_1_16?ie=UTF8&qid=1379458508&sr=8-16&keywords=FM+antenna

 

FM is still great fun if you can find a good station that doesn't super-compress everything.  PBS stations seem to be the best.

post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomb View Post
 

Except for the Magnum Dynalab ($$$$) that Avro listed, you'd do a lot better with a tuner from Ebay.  I have three Sony J75's, each of which I got for less than $100.  The old tuners - with a good antenna - have sound quality that's far superior to modern tuner equipment.  There just isn't a market anymore for a very-high quality FM tuner.  It's mostly FM stations themselves that purchase the Magnum Dynalabs, as a check on their signal quality.

 

I also have the Sony HD Radio tuner (XDR-F1HD) that they made recently for a few years.  People swore by them, but my J75's run rings around it.  Unfortunately, the price went up by 4 or 5 times when they quit making them.  I paid about $75 for mine new, but now they're $300-$500.  There again, you can do lots better on ebay if you're smart about it and follow these guys' advice and reviews:

http://www.fmtunerinfo.com/ - this is one of the finest vintage audio sites in existence.

 

You'll find very few FM-specialized antennas, either.  A TV one wastes a lot of the elements because the old VHF frequencies didn't exactly overlap with FM.  I have this one in the attic and it has superior signal output compared to a lot of the omni's or whips (it's also very cheap):

http://www.amazon.com/Antennacraft-Triple-Driven-Directional-Hd-Radio-Antenna/dp/B003EB03OA/ref=sr_1_16?ie=UTF8&qid=1379458508&sr=8-16&keywords=FM+antenna

 

FM is still great fun if you can find a good station that doesn't super-compress everything.  PBS stations seem to be the best.

 

Ah maybe I should scrap this idea.  Seems it's turning in to another $100+ idea, and where as the locals in HD idea was something we actually use (The 91XG I bought pointed at Shreveport, LA ) , I can always use spotify .. Although I miss listening to the radio once and a while.  DISHNetwork has Serious too, but it just aint the same.

 

edit: Also I'm on 10GB capped internet, so spotify would only be for a 'quick fix' rather than "leave it on and see what I can find" .


Edited by RodgerM - 9/17/13 at 4:25pm
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RodgerM View Post
 

 

Ah maybe I should scrap this idea.  Seems it's turning in to another $100+ idea, and where as the locals in HD idea was something we actually use (The 91XG I bought pointed at Shreveport, LA ) , I can always use spotify .. Although I miss listening to the radio once and a while.  DISHNetwork has Serious too, but it just aint the same.

 

edit: Also I'm on 10GB capped internet, so spotify would only be for a 'quick fix' rather than "leave it on and see what I can find" .

 

I thought the idea I conveyed was that you could have a superior-quality tuner and antenna for something less than $100 or a bit over?  I know the economy is still sh*t, but is $100 or $125 that much worse than what you were proposing?

post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomb View Post
 

 

I thought the idea I conveyed was that you could have a superior-quality tuner and antenna for something less than $100 or a bit over?  I know the economy is still sh*t, but is $100 or $125 that much worse than what you were proposing?

With SSI income, yeah.

post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RodgerM View Post
 

With SSI income, yeah.

 

It figures - someone expresses an interest in FM radio and I scare them away.

:(

post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomb View Post
 

 

It figures - someone expresses an interest in FM radio and I scare them away.

:(

 

I think it was me...

post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avro_Arrow View Post
 

 

I think it was me...

 

Maybe it was Memphis. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdV0DKfMbtE

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