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post #1 of 6 Old 03-07-2009, 03:26 PM - Thread Starter
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It seems as though nearly every post in this forum deals with the technical aspects of HD radio -- equipment, specs, antennas, reception, etc. Nobody seems to be talking about any actual HD Radio programming.

I'm just wondering, is this just a forum of radio station engineers who find it exciting to pursue hard-to-get signals an reverse-engineer the technology? Or are there people here who aren't involved in the broadcast industry and are actually finding something worthwhile to listen to? And if so, what? Something unique on HD2 or HD3? Or just "better" quality sound on your favorite AM or FM station?
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post #2 of 6 Old 03-07-2009, 07:23 PM
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While I certainly can't speak for everyone, I am not involved in the broadcast industry in any way, shape, or form. I am an amateur radio operator as a hobby, so I suppose that sort of explains my technical interest. Anyway, my story is sort of uncommon I suspect. I was looking for a way to hear my home audio out in my horse barn about 125 feet from my house. When I go out to do chores I thought it would be nice to hear the local news or whatever the family might be watching on my TV in the house. Originally, I started by connecting home theater audio through my computer and then into the intercom system allowing my to play the audio on selected speakers throughout the house or an external speaker. I eventually talked to a friend, who by the way is a fellow ham radio operator and does work in the broadcast industry, who talked about having a legal, license free, FM transmitter to be able to tune home audio on radios throughout the house or on a Walkman while mowing the lawn, etc. That piqued my interest and I bought a used Panaxis ACC-100S transmitter from Ebay. The next step was to get a sensitive and selective FM radio for my horse barn that could hear the low power signal that far away. I recycled my old VHF-UHF log periodic TV antenna when I went to a UHF only TV antenna for the switch from NTSC to ATSC. The combination works well. As an aside, I did try other receivers that weren't as sensitive or selective. I figured that it was a gamble buying a radio on-line not knowing if it would work for my application, but I thought since it was also HD it would give me a chance to "test the water." As it turns out there was also a rebate for HD at the time, so the Radiosophy $100 radio had a $40 rebate, but shipping was $15, so I took a chance. We have All Comedy Radio carried on 93.7-2 in the Minneapolis Saint Paul Metro area. I like comedy radio and it isn't carried on mainstream analog radio. I ended up buying three more HD radios. One was second hand from Ebay for my pickup truck. Another was a Sangean when Sharper Image closed at the Maul of America. The other is the Sony component receiver that also had an attractive $40 rebate. So for me it really isn't "better" quality sound, but rather variety in format. As an aside, I also have experience listening to both XM and Sirius Satellite radio when they were competitors. I like satellite radio, but I don't like recurring monthly fees. I just bought my wife a Slacker radio earlier this week and it seems to be a good replacement for her Sirius satellite radio. I got a G1 from JR during their weekend sale. I am also interested in wi-fi radio. During my work day I have listened in the past to comedy stations from XM radio and more recently Sirius radio. Now I typically listen on-line to Slacker Radio or sometimes All Comedy Radios webpage. My employer has a laptop computer in my car with a wireless aircard, so that gives me an option that many people don't have. I do like the HD radio in my pickup and it also has a CD player. I have some comedy CDs now, but I am considering buying another Slacker Radio for the times that I am out of range of 93.7-1. About the only time I am out of range is when I load my ATV and take it to rural Minnesota for a trail ride. That is probably more than you wanted to know, but I am just sort of fascinated by the different choices we have right now. I know that iPods are overwhelmingly popular, but it wouldn't be a good fit for me right now. I do like the iPod Touch, but I think I might be more interested in an iPhone or iPod Touch when they add GPS to it, not just Google Maps, but real honest to God GPS with spoken street names.
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post #3 of 6 Old 03-08-2009, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carnivore View Post

It seems as though nearly every post in this forum deals with the technical aspects of HD radio -- equipment, specs, antennas, reception, etc. Nobody seems to be talking about any actual HD Radio programming.

Because the programming varies from city to city.

Quote:


I'm just wondering, is this just a forum of radio station engineers who find it exciting to pursue hard-to-get signals an reverse-engineer the technology?

There has been no mention of reverse-engineering HD Radio.

Quote:


Or are there people here who aren't involved in the broadcast industry and are actually finding something worthwhile to listen to? And if so, what?

I could tell you what HD stations are in Portland, Oregon. That will interest maybe a dozen people here.

NOW: my post on AVS Forum.
NEXT: someone else's post on AVS Forum.
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post #4 of 6 Old 03-08-2009, 09:54 PM
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Here in minneapolis, the programming is done usually by the main channel PD. Very little care is taken with it from the PDs i've talked to. One guy spends a whopping 5 minutes programming the Jazz HD2 station on the local talk station. Some of the stations are learning that they can LMA the HD2 and a lot of spanish HD2 stations are popping up to offset the costs of running HD. Programming hasn't really been taken seriously by the GMs at the stations because they realize that their sales people can't really sell it since it's an unmeasured medium as of now, so they tack on a dollar per ad and sell it as a "combo buy" for the stations. They increase sales by that much, but it's peanuts compared to the main channel revenue. Not to mention, they're assuming that radio penetration on the consumers end is next to nothing and just aren't putting forth the effort.

But most of the HD2-3-4 stations around here are programmed by the corporate consultants of the cluster. Only station in MPLS that's doing it's own thing so far is MPR, but even that's kinda half-assed.
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post #5 of 6 Old 03-09-2009, 09:14 AM
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The problem with talking about content is that we're all from different parts of the country. I'm just a geek who likes his music. HD Radio kind of fell in my lap, and I've had some fun with it.

In 2005, Philadelphia lost it's only modern rock/alternative radio station (Y100). Some of the people running the station went rogue and took to the Internet. Eventually they partnered with WXPN, a "member supported" station, and became "Y-Rock on XPN". Shortly thereafter, XPN put Y-Rock on their HD-2 station. I immediately went out and purchased an HD Radio so I could get good music in my car again.

The rest has just been general geekery, as I enjoy gizmos. Between HD Radio and ATSC HD TV, I've learned a lot about Over The Air technologies. It's fun!
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post #6 of 6 Old 03-09-2009, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by TydalForce View Post

The rest has just been general geekery, as I enjoy gizmos. Between HD Radio and ATSC HD TV, I've learned a lot about Over The Air technologies. It's fun!

It still seems unbelievable that we can get this many ones and zeros right out of the air, after years of 50 baud RTTY.

NOW: my post on AVS Forum.
NEXT: someone else's post on AVS Forum.
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