Today, is it reasonable to invest in a World band

  Sparrowhawk 13:51 11 May 2004


Has anybody owned, tested world band radios?

click here_

click here

1- Is it reasonable to invest in a World band radio in 2004? Or is this technology going to be obsolete in next years?

2- Mostly for home use, but also for travel. Is the travel model capable of delivering an acceptable sound?

3- Which model would you recommend?

4- At home, is it possible to connect a world band radio to an amp in order to have a decent sound?

Sony ICF-SW35 £60.99 incl. tax & post.
Digital, no automatic tuning
click here

SONY ICFSW7600G £120.97 incl. tax & post.
Digital, automatic tuning, FM stereo
click here

Sony ICF-SW100E £133.71 incl. tax & post.
POCKET SIZE, digital, no automatic tuning
click here

Thanks in advance

  Arthur Scrimshaw 15:26 11 May 2004

To answer your questions :-
1/ I think it is worth investing, although there are alternatives such as Worldspace (click here)which is digital satellite radio and DRM (Digital Radio Mondial)which is digital shortwave. Current Worldspace receivers aren't up to much (the launch models were much better and can be found s/h) DRM radios are virtually non existent - the only one I know of from Mayah is £450!
2/ Depends what you mean by an acceptable sound. You appreciate no shortwave radio is going to sound like FM or DAB (even the most expensive tabletop ones) but radios such as the ones you list will give good results.
3/Look on click here for reviews on the radios you are interested in.
I actually own a Sony 7600GR (the G model is no more) and it is a great radio but before you buy check out the aerial rotation. Mine caused the case to fracture because it was too stiff (despite very careful treatment)so be warned. Maybe it was a one off but be careful. Look for models with Syncronous Detection as this improves reception a bit.
4/ See 2/ above. If you connect hissing fading shortwave to your stereo all you will get is louder hissing and fading. Shortwave is not a high quality source but it does enable you to listen over huge distances. If you want better quality maybe you should wait for DRM or invest in a laptop and listen to radio over the internet.
If you decide to buy a shortwave radio I suggest you look for sync. detection (see above) SSB (single side band) which enables you to listen to interesting things like coastguard, military and radio hams. Also go for digital tuning with keypad entry and +/- scanning. Also check it covers the frequencies you plan to listen to - not all radios do. A good book to get for advice is the Radio Listeners Guide (£5.45) click here if you can wait that long.
Good luck

  Sparrowhawk 16:08 11 May 2004

Thank you very much Arthur.

click here proves very helpful.

  MichelMerlin 16:09 11 May 2004

Sparrowhawk's URLs #1 and 2 are:

SONY Portable Shortwave Radio: "click here_" (restore the trailing underscore if it has been removed)

DIRECT link to Roberts' Worldband Radios: click here

Thanks both Sparrowhawk and Arthur Scrimshaw for appreciated informations.

Paris, Tue 11 May 2004 17:09:10 +0200

  Stuartli 16:43 11 May 2004

I've got a Sony WA-8800 FM/MW/SW1-8 stereo cassette-corder which was a gift to me in 1989 - there are 10 bands and it has SW dual conversion, records in stereo on cassette from the radio or external source, auto-reverse and digital clock/tape counter and alarm mode.

The sound from the stereo speakers is a little bit tinny even using tone controls, but the whole unit is only about 10ins long and about 2ins deep.

The short wave reception is excellent, the digital clock keeps perfect time and it runs on just two AA batteries.

Mind you it cost £230 some 15 years ago, so it should be good. In fact the quality of the WA-8800 is quite superb, particularly its hinged cassette holder which is pulled out from the top to insert or remove compact cassettes and which houses the radio tuner on its front section.

  Stuartli 16:49 11 May 2004

Pic of WA-8800 here:

click here

  Stuartli 16:53 11 May 2004

Re the Roberts radios. These are produced in Yorkshire and my mate, who runs an independent audio/visual/appliances outlet, sells dozens of them every year.

People appreciate their quality, wide model range and surprisingly reasonable prices.

  Stuartli 16:57 11 May 2004

Your point about connecting to an amplifier shouldn't pose any problems using either a 3.5mm jackplug to 3.5mm jackplug or 3.5mm jackplug to two phono plugs leads i.e. radio's headphone socket to amplifier's input sockets.

  GANDALF <|:-)> 18:44 11 May 2004

I never use a radio now....only use t'internet. Better sound quality and loads more choice. Of course if you are not on BB it is not much cop, nor is it any good in the depths of Ethiopia.


  oresome 20:03 11 May 2004

GANDALF <|:-)>, so that's why you're behind the times. (sorry, couldn't help the technical joke)

  Arthur Scrimshaw 20:34 11 May 2004

If you decide to go for a Roberts shortwave receiver - please bear in mind that these are in fact re-badged Sangean receivers, and you can normally find the equivalent Sangean model £50 or so cheaper. Sangean are one of the worlds largest (if not THE largest)shortwave radio manufacturers and are good quality, hence Roberts using them.

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