Originally Posted by Bismarck440
Out in the fringes the Cleveland college fare has a weaker signal, I noted there is quite a bit on the HD Radio, (Installed a car receiver for someone else, quite affordable too), though the manufactures of home receivers refuse to incorporate HD into their product (except on way high end), perhaps a payoff frrom XM/Sirrus? I really have no reason to replace my 30+ year old receiver otherwise.
I remember looking at HD Radios at Best Buy sometime around 2006, and they had some nice shelf units. They were perfect for an office or a bedroom. They all seemed to have disappeared, except for some Insignia units that have poor reviews. Like you said, it's either a car radio or high end system. I wonder if the shelf units did a terrible job at receiving the HD signal where a high end unit generally requires you to attach an external/outdoor antenna for best reception. Even without HD radio, it seems impossible to buy a basic shelf or table radio anymore. Even if you do find one, they are usually those cheap crappy Chinese radios that only receive the strong stations and the sound quality is very terrible! And yes, I have a receiver that dates back to the 80's with a tuning knob and needle indicator. It does a good job picking up weak stations, and that's with a single piece of wire acting as the antenna!
Since December 2011, I've owned an Insignia portable HD radio. For being small, the unit seems to do a very good job receiving HD radio and your headphone cable acts as the antenna. I can listen to WMJI HD-2 in my car using a cassette adapter with the cable routed over the mirror and maybe have dropouts ~10% of the time, and that's being about 20 miles away from the Parma tower farm. I sometimes attach it to my home receiver and it sounds pretty good. The only thing it doesn't do, compared to other HD radios, is receive AM. Otherwise the radio would be twice as big in order to make room for the AM coil. Because of that, I currently don't know how AM HD radio sounds. I assume that you would have to be able to receive the station as strong as possible in order to keep the HD active. (No static, noise, or other interference in the analog AM broadcast.) I’m also told that the HD sound quality on AM is very compressed, much like streaming a radio station on a 56K modem. I guess the only thing you gain is improved frequency response and a stereo broadcast, not like you need it on talk stations.