What are some good world-band radio stations and any listening tips (like tricks for better reception)?
December 22, 2003 10:27 PM   Subscribe

I found my old Short Wave/Long Wave radio and was wondering what are some good world-band radio stations and any listening tips (like tricks for better reception).
posted by drezdn to Media & Arts (7 answers total)
Can't help you with better reception but I am sure the best station in the world to tune into would be the BBC World Service.
posted by Frasermoo at 1:46 AM on December 23, 2003

Argh, beat me by a second, gotta change my post :-) Errr, the frequencies for the BBC World Service are available online (as is the audio stream itself, which kinda ruins the fun of it). There's also the Voice of America, although I'm unsure about reception in the US as I believe the US is the only place from where it is not allowed to be transmitted (urban myth?)

Regarding reception, for short wave the optimum aerial is a very very long wire stretched out between two poles. This is because short wave signals, and this will seem odd to the laymen, have a rather long wavelength. So.. get some wire, and lengthen your aerial :-)
posted by wackybrit at 1:50 AM on December 23, 2003

i've been a sw listener since childhood and use the reliable
sony 2010
. some of the best intro sites online can be found here and here. i hope that helps.

happy dx'ing.
posted by azul at 5:24 AM on December 23, 2003

You want to listen to the stations on Short Wave???

Screw that. Listen to the interference between the stations; record it, and then edit it together, for hours of fun.
posted by Blue Stone at 5:46 AM on December 23, 2003

yes sir i do. and actually its hours and days and years of fun when you live in the third world away from the electronic luxuries of the empire. not to mention blackouts, horrible acts of god or simply when the almighty internet gets a tad bit unreliable.
posted by azul at 6:25 AM on December 23, 2003

Yes, urban myth, wackybrit. There are three domestic VOA transmitting stations, including a mammoth one near Greenville, NC. VOA frequencies here.

And I second the long aerial comment -- I used to have a copper wire strung along the ridgepole of my parents' garage. Worked great.

Only other trick I can remember at the moment had to do with my old Hallicrafters, whose frequency meter was pretty far from true. So I'd always see how far it was drifting by starting each listening session at WWV (2.5/5/10/15/20 MHz exactly) and then calibrate from there.
posted by Vidiot at 10:33 AM on December 23, 2003

When I flirted with shortwave a few years ago, I found the Passport to World Band Radio to be pretty darn helpful. There's an accompanying website at www.passband.com. The web is also handy if you want to know what's on right now.
posted by warhol at 7:39 PM on December 23, 2003

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