Non-motoring > Shortwave listening Miscellaneous
Thread Author: Rudedog Replies: 10

 Shortwave listening - Rudedog
Does anyone on here have experience of this?

I just want to listen on a very basic level at the very cheapest option.

I've been looking at secondhand portable radios on eBay but really want to make sure it works, the cheapest new ones seem to be around £35 with a digital tuner.

Not sure if charity shops still sell electrical items anymore?

Looked at phone/laptop apps but they have varying reviews and some say they can't be used without a licence.




 Shortwave listening - Bromptonaut
Zero has probably forgotten more about this than I ever knew but I've dabbled a bit.

Is it just broadcast you want to listen to?

I'm not aware of anything receive only that would need a licence in the UK
Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Tue 27 Dec 22 at 12:36
 Shortwave listening - Bromptonaut
Previous thread which touched on the subject matter:

www.car4play.com/forum/post/index.htm?t=18169&v=f
 Shortwave listening - Biggles
Maybe a Russian sleeper has been activated by a coded message in the Times engagement announcements but the basic training in radio operation has been forgotten.
 Shortwave listening - Rudedog
Funny you should say that.... got a recommendation on YT to watch a great series of videos on shortwave stations in the UK and all about the past and current (reduced number) of number stations still broadcasting.... just wanted to see (hear) what was out there without spending a lot of cash.
 Shortwave listening - Zero
Ah Numbers stations, You must have been on Lewis's M3HHY you tube channel. Remember listening to them on my old mans Grundig Ocean boy in the early to mid 70s.

For shortwave, (we call it HF) you need to remember most of the band is EMF noise, you are going to need to chuck an aerial outside (length of wire out the window is good) and you are going to need to get a set that does SSB (upper and lower). Start off with an SDR dongle plugged into your PC with an SDR programme. (around your 35 quid target) (I'll say again, till you have a length of wire out the window you are wasting your time)

You are going to need to invest a lot of time to acquire the twiddling finger and ear, initially it can be very frustrating.
 Shortwave listening - Rudedog
Good spot on the YT channel considering I gave no clues, once I started watching I couldn't stop.

As you've said I think I might fall down on being able to rig up a long enough aerial.... I sort of had visions of buying one of the cheap worldwide 9 band portable radios and tuning into some of the frequencies mentioned in his videos for current number transmissions... just sparked an interest in something I have from another angle as I'm really into anything to do with post-war Germany and the setting up of West Germany.... I collect items with West Germany stamped on them which seems to be quite rare now.


 Shortwave listening - Zero
>> Good spot on the YT channel considering I gave no clues, once I started watching
>> I couldn't stop.

I know Lewis relatively well, (tho we have never met face to face) I provided him with a fair bit of material when he did his sequence about 2mFM repeater jammers and pirates in the early 80s.
 Shortwave listening - Bromptonaut
Example of a travel sized SW receiver here:

moonrakeronline.com/steepletone-sab2019-compact-14-band-receiver

I suspect it'll only/mostly pick up broadcast stations. Without SSB as mentioned by Zero it certainly won't pick up Amateurs or Oceanic Air Traffic control.

The Dongle or a more purpose built SDR like SDR Play RSDP will give you a lot more bang for your buck albeit the cheapest SDR play is quite a few more bucks than you propose.
 Shortwave listening - Zero

>> I'm not aware of anything receive only that would need a licence in the UK

license not required or available to receive. Essentially an archaic old law says that you break the law if you receive anything not on the public broadcast bands. No-one gives a fig tho.
 Shortwave listening - Bromptonaut
>> license not required or available to receive. Essentially an archaic old law says that you
>> break the law if you receive anything not on the public broadcast bands. No-one gives
>> a fig tho.

Air Traffic Control comes under that heading.

I've been listening to ATC since the mid seventies.

The airport police at Leeds Bradford used to insist we turned off the then universal Sharp pocket receivers while in the internal viewing deck. But that was more to do with a rule banning ALL radios from the terminal building. Seem to remember being told that some receivers (super regenerative?) could produce spurious signals and we were right under the tower so maybe an excess of caution.

But go to any airshow now, or way back then old Queens Building viewing area at Heathrow or on the piers at Manchester, and there were dozens of people with radios.
Last edited by: Bromptonaut on Tue 27 Dec 22 at 23:40
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