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Sony XDR-F1HD Technical Review - Page 12

post #331 of 359
Originally Posted by gnosys View Post

"Reducing temperature will prolong electrolytic capacitor life."

Not in any meaningful way to a human owning this product and using it continually, for decades. [Like any of us will even be using this thing even 10 years from now. Yeah right. ]


"The expected lifetime doubles for each drop of 10° C. A fan might well lower the temperature 20° C, quadrupling capacitor life. Both the tuner module and HD Radio module contain surface-mount electrolytics that would be difficult to replace."

Wow, just think, we'll be able to pass this device on to our great, great, grand children!

Modders invent reasons for modding. I know; I'm one of them!
post #332 of 359
If any of the four capacitors that are near the transformer fail in the next ten years, I'll just spend a dollar and replace them myself. It's not worth installing a fan to preserve parts that cost a few cents and will last years anyway.
post #333 of 359
Many Thanks!
post #334 of 359
I'm receiving the message NOT AVAILABLE when turning in a station. Is this a problem with the station or the tuner?
post #335 of 359
It probably means the HD stream your trying to listen to is down, usually happens to me whenI try to tune in the HD2 staion on my favorite local when their HD stuff is dead.
I have a Dual 6425 HD car radio that got me started in these things and I believe that's basically what it says when the 2nd stream is down.
I could be wrong but that's my bet on it.
post #336 of 359
Thanks for the response. I did the simple thing first: check out the station on my car's HD radio. Guess what: it didn't come in there either and is still out today. If it doesn't come back tomorrow I'll call the station. I just didn't want to walk into a cold garage!
post #337 of 359
Originally Posted by iraweiss View Post

Thanks for the response. I did the simple thing first: check out the station on my car's HD radio. Guess what: it didn't come in there either and is still out today. If it doesn't come back tomorrow I'll call the station. I just didn't want to walk into a cold garage!

Don't wait to send an email. Send one tonight, that they they will know that there are actually people listening to their HD content!
post #338 of 359
post #339 of 359
I was very interested in HD radio and read great things about this tuner. I bought one on Ebay, for my Christmas gift, and got it going this morning. Comparing to McIntosh MX-113 Preamp/Tuner. Seems like the bandwidth on the McIntosh is broader. Sound is brighter, higher fidelity. FM on the Sony seems slightly more sensitive. AM on the Sony appears to be barely acceptable compared to the McIntosh. This kind of surprised me. I'm a little disappointed in the lack of fidelity from the Sony. But, it isn't that bad. I'm finding it interesting to play with and like accessing some of the HD channels here in Memphis.

I'm wondering what the latest technology, best units are that are made today?????? I would only be interested in a tuner unit like the Sony. I do not have digital inputs on my stuff since it is obviously very vintage.

Waiting for some comments. Happy holidays and thanks in advance for your help.

post #340 of 359
>AM on the Sony appears to be barely acceptable...
Actually AM reception is quite good, as good as most any other radio. The problem is the AM antenna connector. HD stations need a stronger signal than regular stations so to get good reception and block out noise and static from household appliances you need an outside antenna with a shielded leadin using the proper shielded connector. The people at Sony really dropped the ball when they put screw terminals on the back for AM instead of using another F connector or combining the two together like a car radio. I removed the screw terminals and installed a second F connector on mine and I use RG6 shielded cable to connect to a whip antenna outside on the roof. A car radio whip will work or a solid metal CB whip. CB whips with loading coils don't work well though since the coil blocks AM and FM frequencies.
My plan was to use the whip for AM and my TV antenna for FM but then I found that both AM and FM work great using just the one whip so I could probably just connect the AM input to the FM antenna connector and use it together for both.
post #341 of 359
The AM section isn't that great unless you get a HD station strong enough, regular AM is typical low grade tuner audio so I don't use it much here as we only have 1 station in HD AM semi worth listening to as soon as all their right wing talk crap is done for the day.
I haven't heard of any newer tuners that are better then the Sony, most have more features but don't sound better on FM and cost more money.
I haven't really researched anything newer so unless it's in this section or somewhere else I don't know about it as I'm happy enough with the Sony and the Dual 6425 in my car.
post #342 of 359
Thanks for renewing a very old thread. I appreciate it. While I question the fidelity of FM compared to my McIntosh, the sensitivity and/or selectivity is amazing. I can hear all kinds of stations on the Sony that I cannot pull out with the McIntosh using same antenna. I suspect it is selectivity. Right now I'm using the typical cross-dipole FM antenna in my attic. I need to get it on the roof. Regarding comments about heat.....the unit does get warm. In fact, it gets much warmer on the bottom vs. the top. I moved it from the top of my McIntosh walnut case as it concerned me a little. It isn't uncomfortably hot to touch but I just didn't want to take a chance with the Mc case.

Interestingly, I moved the supplied loop antenna to my receptor radio on my nightstand. I love the receptor but there is a night-time AM signal it simply can't hear. I put the little loop on it and it jumped right out of the noise.

Looking forward to more comments from Sony owners.


post #343 of 359
After being turned on continuously for years, my F1HD had a problem receiving anything. It appeared to be picking up stations on the wrong frequency.

I reset the power and now it works fine so it was just one of those glitches. Too bad they don't make this thing any more.
post #344 of 359
Wow, hard to beleive it's been about 5 years already. If I hadn't got that Dual HD6425 for my car at Best Buy for next to nothing on a disco sale I never would have bought my sony. Mine still works great today and I have upgraded to a slightly newer/better Onkyo 898 but I still use the lowly Sony HD radio with it and have never even tried it's built in tuner. I think it's one of the few times I bought something that was excellent from the start for a great price that is now worth more then I paid for it. You don't see them too often on eBay and when you do they go for more then 100 usually. Too bad Sony wimped out and stopped selling it or made anything better since. I would have loved a improved version with all the bells and whistles the other HD tuners have.
Good to know all you had to do was unplug it or whatever to get it to reset itself. If mine dies I'm popping it open and trying to fix it and if that fails haunting eBay till one shows up that works cool.gif
post #345 of 359
It's been about been a good 6 and a half years or so since I unpacked my Sony XDR-F1HD which I first used at a place of work to decipher my local AM News Talker (WTAM 1100) that had decided to go HD Back in October of 2006. Good thing because AM was difficult to get around a gigantic wave solder machine that had a tendency to be very RF Hostile. I made a micro power FM translator so I could recover the decoded audio on FM. The Sony has never failed to give me excellent relative reception regardless of the environment it was thrown in. I now use it at home since WTAM and many AM's in this region gave up on HD AM. I have experience only one quirk with the tuner while using it to DX AM. Even though the audio pass band is atrocious and the most narrow of any of the tuners I have ever heard, the differential RF input helps tremendously with noise canceling and in conjunction with a tuned loop antenna (Terk AM Advantage) it has remarkable user sensitivity on analog AM.
The quirk I experienced is the following: THE TUNER SOMETIMES MISTAKES NOISE FOR AN AM HD SIGNAL AND WILL MUTE ANALOG AUDIO WHILE TRYING TO DIGITALLY LOCK WHEN IT HAS NO REASON TO. That cuts out normally about 10 seconds of audio until it gives up and reverts back to analog. This only happens on AM. Yes it will always be more prone to happen if an adjacent channel is broadcasting HD at night but it will happen when there is no HD signal present during the daytime if I am tuned to a relatively weak signal like AM 100 or 200 miles away which is "doable" during the daytime here in Ohio at an altitude of 1200 feet above sea level.. DOES ANYONE ELSE'S SONY HALLUCINATE HD ON NOISY AM STATIONS ON OCCASION LIKE MINE DOES? I might want to look to see if there is a forced analog HACK that was mention by that rather elaborate post of the inner workings of the tuner and various modifications that can be done to boost its feature set.
post #346 of 359
Don't know. I haven't listened to any of the Cleveland AM stations in many decades.

But I do use my Sony XDR-F1HD to sometimes listen to Kent State FM, which is not easy from Lakewood.
Edited by Speedskater - 6/18/13 at 5:11pm
post #347 of 359
Yes, I get the same thing. For me, it primarily affects a San diego AM station I listen to, 760. I also have an internet radio tuner connected to my stereo, & usually listen to that station on Vtuner. So it is no longer a problem for me.
post #348 of 359
Yes, I get the same thing. For me, it primarily affects a San diego AM station I listen to, 760. I also have an internet radio tuner connected to my stereo, & usually listen to that station on Vtuner. So it is no longer a problem for me.
post #349 of 359
Yesterday I did a HD AM station scan of Cleveland and didn't find any. Next I did a regular AM scan and found less than 20 stations. So my AM antenna must not be doing much. But this was the first time in over a year that I went to the AM band so that's the end of the story.
post #350 of 359
I'm in Akron and I am sorry to report that the Northeast Ohio market sports absolutely NOTHING in the way of AM HD. Looks like everything got yanked including 1260 WWMK which was the only stereo HD outlet with artist/title running as well on AM HD. WTAM gave up on it and their pre-existing highly compressed audio is very fatiguing to hear. Prior to October of 2006 (when I bought my Sony for the expressed purpose of pulling in WTAM 1100 in HD) I had to tune all the way over to 760 WJR in Detroit and from certain listening heights in the car, I could lock them down in HD MONO, HD Stereo in the Cleveland area. I am speculating on how I think everything went down. I am betting the farm that maintenance budgets were cut, and God only knows how much phasing and "linearization" exercises take place to keep the propagated signal nice and linear, was getting to be too costly for the minority listening demographic, so the CE's floating around were ordered to pull the digital equipment. This is my guess and I'll bet the FARM that this is how things went down; kill all of the excess expenditures ASAP! We're bleeding on the "P&L" If you're only going to get a handful of radio geeks that even give a crap about this format abandonment, it's worth it to hear such minor protest or name mention of the HD going "bye bye". It's been an FM world to begin with. I forget who argued for AM HD. The argument was fair to have parity and not be totally left out of any digital option, but the practical use of the technology, has not panned across every radio market with generally positive acceptance and that is somewhat tragic in my estimation. Everything got yanked,and I'm thinking it was to save money. AM is a talker's band and I am beginning to think that there will be no other opportunity to enhance its most basic features of dependable analog coverage during times of emergency.
post #351 of 359
When i worked at AM 1260, it was WIXY-1260. But times have changed. I also remember a time when Detroit's WJR 760 was the best AM station in Cleveland.
post #352 of 359
I don't know if I have a clip of their HD audio I might also not sure if it was miked via flip video audio or a direct recording from my tuner ( Accurian). Some might argue that CKLW was the most popular back then for their Drake Chenault format. WWMK 1260 was hard to get in stereo HD I faired better in the car with my home brew one transistor AM/FM dual band preamp I made myself that helped AM HD without hurting FM HD, but don't drive by a TV tower!!! yikes! cross-modulation up the wazoo. I was too lazy to dedicate bandpass filtering for each band so we were talking a balancing act of making a bipolr amp class A, pulling the VHF HPF deliberately adding series resistance to increase the output impedence so that the tuner could "react" and resonate on channel and remain selective of- channel. It paid off more times than not because I could not turn the thing off I had it stuffed behind the dash driving my Walmart JVC (forget the model number but yeah! a little better HD sensitivity compared with the KD-HDR1. Caught Boston's WBZ in HD once on the thing right here in Ohio. WJR was good in Northern Ohio like 10 miles north of me down here for the most part MONO HD. I'll bet you that 1260 lost southern counties in northern Ohio at night. Their signal stayed up there in Cleveland then.
WTAM had a monster HD signal. Even while spotty at Akron-Canton Airport, on the open highway I think I had them to at least New Philadelphia. WARF 1350 was directional north and south and their HD definitely stayed put in New Philly with their stick further south in Cuyahoga Falls. I'm thinking that 610 WTVN may be the only CC (Clear Channel) station in the entire region on AM with HD. I get their ground signal in the daytime along with WLW but only see flashing of the HD indicator on WTVN
So long story short, this entire northaest Ohio region gave up on HD. They have had enough of it for whatever reason, operational costs or maintenance costs . Everybody decided to "chuck it on the count of 3". too bad. WTAM was lovely under its grade A signal umbrella. I see they backed down their audio compression a hair. I'll give them a golf clap for that! WTAM cut Beck off so unless I can iheartradio, I run to 610 WTVN which makes it here in Akron reasonably well on good enough receivers.. Well, so much for the barren state of AM HD
post #353 of 359
I think we're down to one AM HD station here.
post #354 of 359
700 WLW Cincinnati, is the only AM HD signal on AM probably statewide. I can see it flashing trying to lock at night. I can get their hissy groundwave during daytime and they are nearly 200 miles away. That's it! One AM HD entity that's a 4 hour drive from here!.... Oh well.....
post #355 of 359
doesnt seem like anyone makes a low cost (sub $100) HD radio tuner anymore? was thinking of trying one out in my garage but this doesn't look promising!
post #356 of 359

^Sangean HD-T1? COBY HDR-650 HD radio tuner?

ebay: Sherwood Zone 7.1 Channel Surround Receiver with HDMI Switching and HD Radio

Item condition:

Manufacturer refurbished

post #357 of 359
There are a lot of car radio units that have HD. Pioneer DEH 4400 Hd is $99 at Crutchfields. I am thinking about this for my garage. I have the Sherwood unit the Hd radio is Fabulous ! Amazing, I use it with my KEFs LS 50's great, last speakers I will ever buy..
post #358 of 359
I have 2 of Sony's HD car radio converter boxes that have the same circuit as the XDR-F1HD. They receive far more AM and FM channels than any of the OEM car radios in my other vehicles. So you would expect Sony to use this circuit in its current line of HD car radios, but noooooooo.
post #359 of 359

^That's interesting, I believe you, but how did you come to find out what chip they use in the modern units? That's not typically the sort of information basic spec sheets divulge.

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