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  »  New  Flac 16bit/48Khz streaming internet radio broadcast..  The bandwidth is there we just need the sources...  Didital Things  Forum     2  19593  11-30-2009
10-28-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 8645
Reply to: 8645
HD Radio? Good, bad or ugly?
fiogf49gjkf0d

I spoke today with WGBH engineers about many aspect of broadcasting and the quality that we, the end users are getting and among many other things he did pitched to me the idea that I am considering to try – the HD radio. According to him WGBH broadcasts quite good HD, better than others and I might try to see what happens.

I have no personal experience with HD hear it a few times, nothing critical though and this HD concept is a new thing for me. He suggested trying a Sony XDR-F1HD receiver that I just ordered from Amazon for $75.

http://ham-radio.com/k6sti/xdr-f1hd.htm

http://theaudiocritic.com/plog/index.php?op=ViewArticle&articleId=35&blogId=1

http://home.comcast.net/~dlp85x/review.htm

http://pages.cthome.net/fmdx/sonyxdr.html

I intentionally posed a few links to what other say as I have absolutely no opinion about the nether HD Radio or about the Sony XDR-F1HD unit. I would feel that the feedback about the success of HD Radio would greatly vary with the quality of HD Radio broadcast. My WGBH guy suggested that some of the things that WGBH do is much better than others do… well, I would not go it the specifics and $75 is not true a great price to try.

I let you know about my HD Radio findings and if any of you have any experience with HD Radio then let me know. I am NOT optimistic but I have open mind about it and I would let the thing to have a chance to show off what it is able to do… The WGBH broadcast HD Radio in 16/44. If it is a pure live 16/44 feed without rendering into a CD then it might be VERY interesting. The question is how much the HD Radio time synchronization would destroy sound.  With MET broadcast it was horrible. Now let see how my local station do it…

The caT


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
11-04-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 2
Post ID: 8711
Reply to: 8645
Was listening HD Radio last night.
fiogf49gjkf0d

The HD Radio for a first time in my own room. Hm…. I do not know what to say.  I was listening my “far and ugly” WCRB station and it was “cleaner” in term of noise but it was very different sound. Something is not right with HD Radio and I cannot get grip what it is. I did not spend enough time to look into HD Radio’s deeper but  I will…

What however, I did indentify was that I do not need the Sony box as I got but I need some kind on HD Radio with SPIDIF or more preferably AES/EBU interface, the devise what I could send a  digital signal after the HD Radio processor (properly buffed)  right to my music server . I do not need any D/A conversion and analog out stage. So, ideally to me the HD Radio shell be USB devise or PC card devise that will be directly read by my DAW.

Is anybody know any PCMCIA, USB, ISA or PCI card that would have the HD Radio chip, accept the coax antenna and to spit a digital stream out?

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
11-10-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
scooter
Posts 161
Joined on 07-17-2008

Post #: 3
Post ID: 8802
Reply to: 8711
Some HD tuners with digital outputs
fiogf49gjkf0d
Hi Romy:

I did not find any computer-based HD Radio receivers. The following link to HD Radio receiver Manufacturers does not seem to list any IT firms:
http://www.ibiquity.com/manufacturers/receiver_manufacturers

So, I spent some time researching HD Radio tuners with digital outputs. There is not much out there, as you likely know, but DaySequerra and Rotel seem to have the better quality tuners:

* DaySequerra M4.0X (Pro unit) - ($1595) S/PDIF via XLR connector at 110 ohms (there are other models on their website that might be more appropriate)
http://www.daysequerra.com/ViewProduct.aspx?nProductID=4&CurTab=MODULATION MONITORS&CurPage=AM/FM HDRadio#

* Rotel RT-1084 ($899) optical and coax out
http://www.rotel.com/NA/products/ProductDetails.htm?Id=22

* Audio Design Associates ($???) Optical out. Website is not too clear but looks like you need to buy a special chassis + HD module
http://www.ada.net/products/av/duo_tuner.php

* Yamaha RX-V1900 ($1300) and similar Denon etc receivers Optical out. (I have wasted a lot of time trying to get a digital out from receivers and am told that it is generally impossible)
http://www.yamaha.com/yec/products/productdetail.html?CNTID=5016804&CTID=5000300&ATRID=1020&DETYP=ATTRIBUTE

* Cambridge SoundWorks Radio 820HD ($169) Optical out
http://www.cambridgesoundworks.com/store/category.cgi?category=aud_radio&item=c1820zzz

* Sangean HDT-1X ($179) Optical out
http://www.ham-radio.com/k6sti/hdt-1x.htm

==> BONUS< ==

A nifty map of HD Radio stations by state follows (there are 1,820 HD stations in the US!)
http://www.ibiquity.com/hd_radio/hdradio_find_a_station

I look forward to hearing comments from the group,

S
11-30-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
scooter
Posts 161
Joined on 07-17-2008

Post #: 4
Post ID: 9034
Reply to: 8802
Has anyone made any progress on the HD radio front?
fiogf49gjkf0d
Has anyone made any progress on the HD radio front?
12-01-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 5
Post ID: 9037
Reply to: 9034
The HD Radio sucks.
fiogf49gjkf0d
I did some listening of the station that reportedly has very high quality of HD Radio and I did not like the result at all. I sound like a normal stream of MP3 file, not particularly high rate of MP3. My WGHB station do feed the HD1 and HD2 with very high quality sigma but I think here is what the format of the HD Radio itself destroys the sound. My HD Radio is sitting on my shelf not even being connected now and to so I will loose 3dB out my main antennas. I might connect it with some kind of room antenna and will listen my NPR’s programs in order do not run my FM tuners. Anyhow, in my view the HD Radio sucks and it is shame that such a reported guru as Dick Sequerra had endorsed the HD Radio 8 years back.

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
12-04-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
doug s.
Posts 5
Joined on 12-03-2008

Post #: 6
Post ID: 9077
Reply to: 9037
Hd radio/sony xdr f1-hd
fiogf49gjkf0d
hi romy,

i like fm.  and i like comparing different tunas.  in the past ten years, i have bought and sold at least a hundred different tunas.  i presently have more than thirty.  easily 90% of my music listening is fm, even in the "sweet spot".  and, while i realize my rig isn't up to your standards, it is a high resolution rig none-the-less.  anyways, re: tunas, some of my faves include my modded refurb'd hk citation 18, modded refurb'd sansui tu-x1, stock rotel rht-10, stock aiwa at9700u, modded refurb'd sherwood s3000v, modded refurb'd sansui tu9900, modded refurb'd sony st-a6b, modded refurb'd heathkit aj1600.  there's more, and there's a bunch of fine tunas i have since sold - like philips ah6731, modded refurb'd mitsubishi da-f20, accuphase t100 & t101, and modded refurb'd accuphase t109.

anyways, these fine tunas will sound better than the sony xdr-f1hd.  however, the xdr is not as bad as you make it out to be, imo.  in fact, w/an otherwise unlistenable marginal signal, it will outperform any tuna i have mentioned above.  of course, you are right - if it doesn't sound good, who cares, how can you listen?  this has in fact been my experience with xm & sirius - the sound is so thin, etched, compressed and grating, i cannot listen for even 30 seconds.  even as background music, it gives me a headache after a half hour or so.  i discovered that, cuz a buddy of mine has it, and i started getting headaches whenever i would go to wisit him.  it was his satellite radio.  anyway, the f1hd really is not anywhere near that bad.  especially w/non-hd signal.  it is not as good-sounding w/hd signal, and unfortunately, you cannot force it to analog, at least not w/o mods.  i have found that this little shite-box actually will sound quite decent if run thru an ase z-man tubed buffer stage, w/a decent nos 12ax7 tube.  nla new, there are other tube buffers awailable that would likely offer similar improvements w/the f1-hd.  and, re: mods, there are actually quite a few that can be done, like the afore-mentioned forcing of analog on hd broadcasts.  go here to check 'em out:

http://www.ham-radio.com/k6sti/xdr-f1hd.htm

regarding hd radio in general, i agree it does not compare sonically to standard fm analog broadcasting, and i hope it fails in the marketplace.  but, unfortunately for those of us who like to listen to fm as a quality source in a hi-rez home audio system, we are in the distinct minority.  hell, we are in the distinct minority even among those who listen to any hi-rez systems in the home.  Surprise  and that, in itself is a tiny minority of the population!  most folks listen to radio in the car, or if in the home, it's for background only.  when i am in my car, i usually prefer to listen to the purr/growl/snarl/roar of the modded 3.0v6 in my alfa.  Smile  i am in the minority there, too...  Wink

best,

doug s.
12-04-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 7
Post ID: 9080
Reply to: 9077
HD Radio is nothing more than FM dildo.
fiogf49gjkf0d

Well, Doug

My attraction to HD Radio statred from the moment when I learned that my WGBH does one less step of analog compression for DH1 compare to FM and do not use limiting-out  at HD2 for live-to-tape recordings. Very promising, isn’t it?  I went and to bought the little Sony unit that everyone advised me to get. Unfortunately I did not hear what I was expected, nether with noise character nor with sound quality.

When I commented that HD Radio sucked it is very much necessary to perceive my comments in context of my objectives. You are right – there are very few people who listen FM as “critical listening” using full of high quality demanding audio installations. There are very many FM enthusiast what do not try to apply to FM the same listening seriousness that they might apply to LP, CD or tape listening.  They have many tuners, in some instances they have a lot of FM experience but they still listen their FM as it was some kind of freakish boom-box. In my home, very much as it looks like as in your home, FM is not the most dominant source but the most important source that I play with my reference audio system. I took it even a bit further – I record FM. The fact of recording is very important as it immediately sets the standards very much higher than “juts for listing”. I am sure that you did record FM and you know what I mean.

So, as I can see it, the HD Radio is an OK media for real time non-critical listening. I would never feel that it worth record or worth for discriminating listening. The key is the digital compression that HD used in their transmission algorithm. I do not know what the rates are, I heard that it is 92kbit but the sonic and musical degradation it well auditable. The sound in HD Radio is kind of “dead”, it has shape and form but does not convey message. I would call it spiritless Sound; did I mention other spiritless substituted in the subject of this post? I was listing a few weeks back Stravinsky Violin concerto live broadcast by somebody I do not remember and it was via R&S, the analog FM tuner. It was a nice battle between soloist and orchestra, full of micro-victories, micro-defeats, moments of glory and sadness of misery. I fliped a button on my preamp and let it to ply from HD Radio, the same antenna, the perfect strength of signal but… it was just a gray renderation of boring notes. Does it get any worth and who after this cares how good or bad bass is or how clean heights? Dildo might have a good shape and might be used for a purpose, so what? Hey, the HD Radio might cover the full dynamic range of orchestra…. and then deliver it to you via 92kbit/c (or whatever). Come on!

I understand that my little $75 unit might not be a perfect tool to get the glory of HD Radio but I think the problem is with the format itself… Until they will send via air 44K-48K/20 bit I do not think any other advanced in distal air broadcasting possible.

Rgs, The Cat

PS: BTW, Doug, you mentioned that you used “modded refurb'd Sansui TU-X1”. I am a bit bun of this tuner and I would like to learn your views about the modification you performed on it. I know 6 people who post at this site periodically and who own this tuner. I know at least another 7-8 people who use TU-X1 and who read this site regularly. I am sure other would be interested to hear your observation about the TU-X1’s mods. There are two thread on the subject, feel free to join any of them:

http://www.goodsoundclub.com/Forums/ShowPost.aspx?postID=4649

http://www.goodsoundclub.com/Forums/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=8179


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
12-04-2008 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
doug s.
Posts 5
Joined on 12-03-2008

Post #: 8
Post ID: 9084
Reply to: 9080
Hd flagellation, and the tu-x1
fiogf49gjkf0d
hi romy,

yes, digital compression sucks and is the main reason hd radio sounds so sterile.  the dildo analogy is quite appropriate, imo.  but, if there's a station you enjoy that doesn't come in well, the xdr f1-hd does sound quite nice - if run thru a tube buffer.  and, if it's a station that plays hd, you can force it into analog, w/the mod shown on brian beazely's site.  the analog sound from this dewice is better than the hd sound.  in fact, if you cut the trace he shows, and don't bother adding the switch, it will never play hd.  Wink

re: taping, i have read your taping threads; it's been years since i have used a tape machine.  makes me consider getting one.  but, as it is, i spend so much time yust listening to on-air recordings, that would mean a third source to compete with my winyl & cd's, lol! 

re: my tu-x1, yes, it's a fine sounding beast.  unfortunately, i cannot give you any info re: how it sounded before mods; when i bought it, it was japan-spec - 76-90mhz tuning band, 50us deemphasis and 100v.  i had it sent directly to joseph chow, a former kenwood tuna engineer, who now owns audio horizons/component plus; a mfr and refurb/mod outfit.  i had him conwert it to usa spec, including the tuning dial.  and, as long as he had it, i had him refurb it and mod it, per his premium mod package, which can be seen here:

http://www.componentplususa.com/pages/upgrades.html

it's funny, he actually has a pic of my tuna on his main component plus page - i recognize it cuz he sent the pic to me; i told him it was unacceptable, i wanted the tuning dial to look exactly like standard production, not the black/white dial as shown in the pic.  so, he had to re-do the dial.  Smile

http://www.componentplususa.com/pages/componentplus.html

anyway, this is a fine sounding tuna.  but, i am not sure it is better than my stephen sank modded and refurb'd harman kardon citation 18 - a direct a-b would be necessary, and i haven't taken the time to do it.  i suspect that my tu-x1 might even be able to be taken further; i have seen an on-line documentation where someone re-built one practically from the bottom up, w/only the best parts...

(stephen sank's home page):
http://www.thuntek.net/~bk11/home.htm

i suspect the tu-x1 *might* have a tiny edge in the lowest bass response, but if it is, it ain't by much.  considering how relatively cheap the hk 18 is, even after mods, i'd recommend it as a freaking bargain.  as is the tu9900, after mods.  the tu-9900, i know gives up the tiniest bit of low-end bass to the tu-x1, but it is so much nicer looking, and a bit easier to place on a rack - the tu-x1 is huge.  now, i also had a stock tu9900; mods improved this one a *lot*.  the one i have now was first worked on by mr chow, then its owner sent it to mike williams at radio-x-tuners, for further filter mods.

http://radioxtuners.com/

now, i also have read with interest your comments about the r&s ballempfanger; i once owned (since sold) a telefunken ebu 3137/3 ballempfanger; it was a fine sounding and receiving piece, thru a slightly modded studio-12 stereo mpx decoder, but it was no better than my hk 18...

http://www.ak-tubes.de/Tuner/Ballempfaenger/Telefunken_EBU/ebu.htm

have you ever heard a rotel rht-10?  my stock unit sounds wery nice indeed; i have heard that, after mods, it is likely even better than an accuphase t109v, sansui tu-x1 or kenwood l-02t.  i am wanting to get mine modded.  and, i also want to try an accuphase t1000; thru a dac, it is supposed to be a significant step up from the standard "holy grail" tuna offerings...

best,

doug s.
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