Wednesday, 16 November 2016

A noise-free location

I am currently away for a few days in a remote part of Cumbria in the North-west of England. Staying in a cottage away from other houses allows some good radio reception, free of noise and man-made QRM.

I am reminded whilst here that I rely at home on recent technology to help me listen to an older technology (AM radio).

What do I mean? Well, at home, I have the Pirate Chat to help me identify stations, especially Dutch ones that maybe I have not identified because I do understand some of the Dutch spoken. I have the SDRplay where I can see all the stations that are in a given part of the band. Also, at home with internet access on the iPhone, I can ask Shazam to identify the music played.

In this cottage I have to rely on memory or guess work. I have just a Tecsun PL-600 and a Tecsun wire antenna to pick up the stations on short wave. No phone signal or internet. The nearest phone signal is 5 miles distant (8 kilometres).

So I listen to the 48 metre band and wait for the IDs. It is mostly successful, and many thanks to stations like Casanova, Laser and Merlin who ID regularly. An occasional station steadfastly refuses to ID and I add it reluctantly to the list as UNID. Other UNIDs are purely a result of not listening for long enough.

Here is the list of stations so far heard:

Saturday 12th November 2016
6285 @ 1652 Zwarte Panter – 35434; Dutch music and ID in Dutch

Sunday 13th November 2016
6245 @ 0916 Casanova – 35433, musical programme
6325 @ 0921 UNID – 35434, “Poupee de Cire, poupee de son”, “Zorba The Greek”, heard ID jingle but not understood
6310 @ 0937 RSI (Scotland Int) – 35434; XTC and “Making Plans for Nigel”, later on 6305
6285 @ 1348 The Ghoul – 35434; usual patter from The Ghoul, asking for emails to, rock music track
6205 @ 1357 Laser Int – 35434; ID jingle, “Automatic” by the Pointer Sisters
6385 @ 1354 UNID – 35434; in QSO, polka style music and then CD
6385 @ 1401 UNID – 25332; heard talk of Readymix and Lowland, in QSO
6325 @ 1352 UNID – 35333; lots of Radio Caroline jingles and also those of other offshore stations, e.g. Radio Veronica
6220 @ 1402 Merlin – 2-34333; Shadows music, ID @ 1405, slight utility QRM started

Then to Medium Wave and a listening session on the Tatung (Sangean ATS-803a) and the Tecsun loop antenna which attaches directly to the Tatung.

1620 @ 2130 – 2200 Technische Man – 35434 to 45434; playing a range of golden oldies with first class audio quality (prima kwaliteit) ID @ 2148, ID again @ 2155 in Dutch, George Michael, Whitney Houston songs. Listening in the bath! Bedankt TM voor de muziek!
1647 Witte Tornado en Lady – 35434; Jim Reeves and “He’ll Have to Go”, Dutch songs, @ 2213 The Lady speaks in Dutch, ID and phone number.
1620 De Panter (Blauwe) – 35333; Jim Reeves song, “Veronica” song, “God Only Knows” by Beach Boys

Any inaccuracies in these loggings can only be attributed to listening in the “old” way! 

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