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post #91 of 133
I think you are correct. I got my first HD receiver about 3 or 4 years ago. It was a Sony combination clock-radio and tuner. Everything sounded pretty good. Then a little while ago, I bought a Sangean tuner and hooked it up to my surround sound receiver in my living room. It sounded great and still does except for the fact that everything locally is either talk or more rock which I don't care for.

Due to costs involved, I doubt that not many stations will convert over to have digital available. There aren't enough people interested to make it financially feasible. Having first gotten into broadcasting in 1968, money is what drove the market. To this day, that still remains true! There are problems too with IBOC on the AM band....primarily in the evening as skip really messes up things. In Europe, they use DRM which I am setup to receive on shortwave as well as in the local AM band. Skip doesn't seem to bother it much at all unless you get a total fade out of the station you are listening to.....but that would happen with the AM they use too.

Oh well.....C'est la guerre!
post #92 of 133
IBOC is only an issue on adjacent channels. There is no market where two local stations are on adjacent channels. Therefore, it's only an issue for those trying to receive stations outside of their home markets. To me, that's kind of unfair to the local station owners who have pumped money into serving the local area. But that's a whole 'nuther matter.

Whether it's financially feasible depends on the dedication of station management. Our station has two subchannels. HD2 doesn't make money, but doesn't cost much to run. It's a jukebox. HD3 turns a profit. Same with our sister WOMC. HD3 turns a profit. It's all in the programming and marketing. It's my contention that station owners who claim they can't make any money really aren't trying to. It's just an excuse.
post #93 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBibeau View Post

........In Europe, they use DRM which I am setup to receive on shortwave as well as in the local AM band. Skip doesn't seem to bother it much at all unless you get a total fade out of the station you are listening to.....but that would happen with the AM they use too.
Oh well.....C'est la guerre!

Lucky you! smile.gif I envy east coast folks who can get some of the European stations. I might have to come visit one day.
Maryland was great back in the mid 70's, and I used to have relatives in Hew Hampshire, too.
post #94 of 133
Well, I must confess, that 99.9% of the DRM I receive is on Shortwave, though a few times, I was able to decode a couple AM BC stations using my Ten-Tec RX-340 receiver. It is a MIL-Spec commercial grade receiver used mostly commercially. I purchased it used and not working and was able to repair it myself. Needless to say, I saved quite a bit as they sell for around $4,500.00 new right now. I use it a lot, especially in the winter when static levels are low, and propagation levels favor European stations....especially on the European VLF BC band. I very often listen to the BBC on 198 kHz.
post #95 of 133
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

IBOC is only an issue on adjacent channels. There is no market where two local stations are on adjacent channels. Therefore, it's only an issue for those trying to receive stations outside of their home markets. To me, that's kind of unfair to the local station owners who have pumped money into serving the local area. But that's a whole 'nuther matter.

There is a definite issue with this, however, where overlapping HD signals into adjacent markets has caused issues. I can name a few examples here on the east coast.
(One that comes to mind was two pre-1964 grandfathered short spaced Class Bs, 1st adjacent from each other, where one was taking a big hit in the signal area due to the overlap)

Now don't get me wrong, I am a huge proponent of HD, but I don't like the amount of adjacent channel interference it causes. But it's still the best digital option there is.
Every digital system has its inherent flaws. The pros do outweigh the cons, but for HD Radio, that 1st (and sometimes 2nd) adjacent thing is a real con.
post #96 of 133
I've noticed that since WODS changed format on 103.3 for its main channel and sub-channels, and that several other Boston market HD stations did the same. It is like they are all shifting to get different listeners. confused.gif
post #97 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBibeau View Post

I've noticed that since WODS changed format on 103.3 for its main channel and sub-channels, and that several other Boston market HD stations did the same. It is like they are all shifting to get different listeners. confused.gif
Or shifting to formats they can monetize.
post #98 of 133
Sad thing is...."Monetize" too often means, "Copy the same format that everybody else is doing".
I hope not. There should be ways to make some reasonable profit by offering some programming options.
And, copying (diluting) the other stations' programming doesn't do that.
post #99 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenglish View Post

Sad thing is...."Monetize" too often means, "Copy the same format that everybody else is doing".
I hope not. There should be ways to make some reasonable profit by offering some programming options.
And, copying (diluting) the other stations' programming doesn't do that.
Yeah, but at the moment, you can't monetize "the same format" without ratings. The formats that are on main channels are all ratings driven. No way you're posting profitable numbers with a mass appeal subchannel. It would have to post ratings in the top 20 in the market to sell any ads at all. Not happening without a LOT of radios.

No, this is an opportunity for niche formatting, such as what we're doing in Detroit with our HD3 subs. Selling the ads is different, because you're looking for clients who want to target just the audience you're serving. For example, we have a rather entertaining sub called "Sky" which is mostly talk shows from psychics, new age gurus and other existential experts. And, if you've ever looked in the classifieds of one of those kinds of magazines, you'll see there's no shortage of talisman-selling, tarot-card-reading, snake-oil making firms just dying to gain new customers. The stream gives us hard numbers to show them, not that they need them. As long as SOMEbody is listening, they'll buy the ads, which are cheap.

Combine the sub with streaming.. maybe network a few metro areas.. program to a niche audience that has spendable income and the sub will do well. Until the radios are in every car and workplace, that's the only way to monetize a subchannel.

However, if and when HD radios become mainstream, then look for a shift back to mass appeal, same as when FM hit its stride in the late 70s. Until then, it was niche, too.
post #100 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

However, if and when HD radios become mainstream, then look for a shift back to mass appeal, same as when FM hit its stride in the late 70s. Until then, it was niche, too.

Yeah, I remember in the 60's when I first got into broadcasting down in Providence, RI, often the FM outlet was used in conjunction with an AM station for stereo broadcasting. AM had one channel and FM the second channel. Later in the 60's, the regular FM stereo format used today started to take over which began to cause the increase in popularity of FM.
post #101 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

However, if and when HD radios become mainstream, then look for a shift back to mass appeal, same as when FM hit its stride in the late 70s. Until then, it was niche, too.

At this point, I don't expect it to become mainstream. I think it'll be there but always trail behind satellite radio (which only became mainstream-ish). The last time I looked sat-radio was around 20M customers and holding. I think they'll likely stick around that. They've gotten rid of lifetime and it's not like it's incredible sound (over compressed) so I don't think they'll appeal to audiophiles any more than NOAA weather radio appeals to them. I think HDRadio will be right behind sat-radio as most people are still unaware of it. Yes, the odd person may get it built into their car and think, "Oh, that's neat," but it's nothing that they'd talk about at the water cooler or encourage their friends to get.

It'll always only sort-of being there. I figure it'll be like CB radio. People know about it and know that they could get it in their car but they really just don't care. Sadly, I think that's where HDRadio is.
post #102 of 133
I'm not sure "sadly" is the right word. The advantage of it not being mainstream is the niche programming. Like with FM back in the day or satellite now, people who are looking for something that's not mass appeal will go to lengths to get it.

Of course, it'll be up to programmers to realize what among the niche formats they can provide and monetize. I look at it this way.. Public Radio doesn't have any ratings at all in most markets yet they're still in the top half in billing. Christian radio in a lot of markets doesn't have ratings, but advertisers will still buy commercials just to reach a narrow audience fairly completely. The same argument used to work for Classical formats. Didn't need ratings. Classical listeners had a LOT of money and if you hit them with ads for the things THEY buy, you could make money. Then came the CD and satellite. Goodbye, multiplexed hissy classical radio. But I digress.

It'll take a while for it to sort out, but the right formats marketed to the right people can pay for themselves relatively cheaply. If that's all HD Radio ever is, then it will at least reach an audience that's being unserved, now. And someone will pay to advertise to that previously unserved audience.

Or that's the hope, at least.
post #103 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

I'm not sure "sadly" is the right word. The advantage of it not being mainstream is the niche programming. Like with FM back in the day or satellite now, people who are looking for something that's not mass appeal will go to lengths to get it.

I guess now with my old age stubbornness, I'm that guy who will listen only to certain satellite audio channels, or HD if they would play the format I enjoy. It will be interesting to see what happens with time. This is assuming that more and more stations will eventually go HD. Unfortunately, I'm sure it wouldn't happen unless $$$ are to be made or if eventually, the FCC does to FM & AM radio what they did to TV, and mandate IBOC for everyone. Then, I'm sure outfits like Harris would love it! rolleyes.gif
post #104 of 133
I'd rather see them mandate inclusion in all future radios manufactured.
post #105 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

I'd rather see them mandate inclusion in all future radios manufactured.

I've got to agree with you. Look what ultimately happened when they mandated UHF TV tuners into the old tube type TV sets. Prior to then, UHF TV stations came and went. When the tuners were mandated, the number of stations slowly increased till what we have today.....more stations actually transmitting on UHF than VHF. Interesting thought! Of course, the DT mandate helped that along alot. wink.gif
post #106 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

I'd rather see them mandate inclusion in all future radios manufactured.

That would include cell phones. It could get ugly. What about AM stations who've been left out in the cold because cell phones don't receive AM? Mandating inclusion of HD Radio in receivers is kind of like the FCC saying, "Sorry, AM. Your days were numbered anyway."
post #107 of 133
How about Drop-out on FM while listening

AM-HD is the worst, alot of noice on sidebands
post #108 of 133
Subchannel drop-outs seem to depend on two things.. the antenna at the receiver and the power level of the station. With our power increases, I only get drop outs on my newer Insignia walkman-style radio working in my yard some 15mi from the towers. Until I took it out of my truck, my Visteon Jump using the truck's whip antenna wasn't losing subchannels anywhere I normally drive. And I used to always lose our subs in two locations within a mile of my house. And none of the subs drop out on my table radio, though the ones from lower-powered stations 30+ miles away don't lock in very well.

As for AM HD there shouldn't be any noise as it's digital. If you're getting sideband noise, then you're most likely listening in analog to a distant AM. Switch to your local stations and help your local economy. wink.gif
post #109 of 133
I am in the Philadelphia area and it is running full speed here there are issues on some stations and now with the addition of commercials it feels like the usual!!
post #110 of 133
I live in Central NJ and have my antenna pointing to Philly because I find more variety on these stations than I do NY. Also, I can pick up more HD Radio stations out of Philly than I can out of NY that I want to listen too. Also, the HD signal is so much cleaner (no noise) and better separation.
post #111 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by norbert26 View Post


HD will not die. Even though people are NOT out willfully buying the HD radios ibiquidy (spelling) shareholders are seeing to it this gets forced into car dash boards. Once implanted / embedded into a new car dash it counts as a sale. I am in the Northeast Market between Boston and New York and FM is saturated with HD / IBOC .

Going to disagree with you here. Look at the experiences of the car makers that have implemented HD Radio. Each one of the has, at one time or another, had to issue TSBs about the fact that the HD cuts in and out is NOT a radio issue. Jaguar owners, who paid BIG bucks for their cars, complain loudly. This toadstool of a system may be in our dashboards, but in the long run people will not eat it.
post #112 of 133
Why is HD still here??

Who listens to it? Seems like HD is getting shoved in our throats no matter what we say

and yes I mean Analog AM Dr Don
post #113 of 133
It's here because it isn't the '50s anymore and many of us enjoy the much improved sound quality.
post #114 of 133
I like it, although I only get 4 stations, 2 are PBS, one local University plays Jazz and 1 AM NEWS/SPORTS/TALK. But, regular AM/FM STEREO is good enough for the car.
post #115 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by SanchoPanza View Post

I like it, although I only get 4 stations, 2 are PBS, one local University plays Jazz and 1 AM NEWS/SPORTS/TALK. But, regular AM/FM STEREO is good enough for the car.

For the most part, I have to agree. I'm lucky here. I live in NE Massachusetts and using an FM turnstile, I get stations in a radius of about 40 miles and get stations from Worcester, Boston and a far north as Concord, NH. Several of the sub-stations, if you want to call them that, have super formats. Unfortunately, most the the HD FM stations merely have just the digital version of the analog FM broadcast.
post #116 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by egnlsn View Post

It's here because it isn't the '50s anymore and many of us enjoy the much improved sound quality.

I enjoyed the much improved sound quality until every HD station in town went 48 kbps which sounds nearly identical to analog FM stereo, especially with an excellent analog receiver like the Sony XDR-F1HD.

It still has the advantage of no multipath which has made reception of most analog stations in my building impossible, but I miss hearing 96 kbps digital audio kick in showing how awful the analog sound really was.
post #117 of 133
Another sign here that AM radio is dead. For over two days a local AM station was impossible to listen to because the audio was wiped out by a 60 Hz hum. Not a background hum but nearly 100% modulation hum. Yes, it took them two days to fix this. Even our local automated HD-2 stations get fixed faster than that.
post #118 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by scowl View Post

Another sign here that AM radio is dead. For over two days a local AM station was impossible to listen to because the audio was wiped out by a 60 Hz hum. Not a background hum but nearly 100% modulation hum. Yes, it took them two days to fix this. Even our local automated HD-2 stations get fixed faster than that.
Guess it depends on the stations. I think the blowtorches would catch that. Up here, WJR and WWJ are moneymakers. but the autobot high-dial location stations.. probably not so much. When I was in Cincy, we had a sports station that was all syndicated programming. Imus in the morning, ESPN Radio the rest of the time. They put one of the bookkeeping girls in the studio so SOMEbody would be in there should something go wrong. I came in at 5AM and checked it. It was fine. About 8:45, someone called wondering when it was going to be back on the air. We checked the transmitter logging and it had been off since about 5:15AM. Nobody noticed for 3 1/2 hours and the off-air alarms failed. Management's biggest concern from all of this was that the bookkeeper was obviously 15 minutes late getting to work.
post #119 of 133
From what I can tell, AM radio is not dead, it just has a different market with Mexican/Spanish channels. The religious and talk channels seem to be moving to FM now with either it being their main channel, as WSB 95.5 is in Atlanta now, or a secondary channel.

I think AM-HDRadio is dead. It was only briefly used a few years back. A few stations may still try but it seems to be that most have given up on it because of the various issues.
post #120 of 133
AM for English seems to be Sports Radio and Talk for the most part, at least for stations with substantial power. Bet the Braves are still on AM.
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