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Everything You Want to Know About Shortwave Radio


Shortwave radio is a form of radio transmission that has been around since the early 20th century. It uses high frequency signals that can travel long distances, making it possible to communicate with people across the globe. In this blog post, we will explore the fascinating world of shortwave radio and its many uses.


Shortwave Radio for Communication

Shortwave radio has been used for communication purposes for decades. During World War II, it was a vital tool for military communication, as it allowed soldiers to communicate with each other across long distances.

Today, shortwave radio is still used for communication in areas where other forms of communication are not available or reliable. For example, it is commonly used by sailors and offshore workers to communicate with each other and with the mainland.

Shortwave radio is also used by amateur radio operators, or "hams" who use it to communicate with other hobbyists around the world.

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Shortwave Radio for Information and Entertainment

In addition to its use for communication, shortwave radio is also a valuable source of information and entertainment. Many countries around the world use shortwave radio to broadcast news and information, particularly in areas where access to the internet is limited.

Shortwave radio is also used to broadcast music, sports, and other forms of entertainment. Some shortwave radio stations even broadcast programs in multiple languages, making it possible for people in different parts of the world to listen to the same content.
 

Shortwave Radio Today

While shortwave radio has been around for a long time, it is still a valuable tool today. In fact, it is often used in emergency situations, such as natural disasters.

When other forms of communication may be down, it's important to have reliable communication tools that can connect you to help quickly and efficiently.

That's where shortwave radios like the Raddy RF75A come in. With its built-in flashlight and SOS function, radios like RF75A are essential toosl for anyone who wants to stay connected during emergencies or disasters.

It is also a popular hobby among amateur radio operators, who use it to communicate with other enthusiasts around the world. And for those who are interested in world news and culture, shortwave radio offers a unique perspective that can't be found in other forms of media.

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Shortwave Radio V.S. Longwave Radio

Shortwave radio and longwave radio are two different frequency bands used in radio broadcasting. Shortwave radio operates on frequencies between 1.6 and 30 MHz, while longwave radio operates on frequencies between 30 and 300 kHz. Shortwave radio is popular for international broadcasting and communicating with remote regions, while longwave radio is used for navigation and communicating with submarines.

Shortwave radio can reach a wider audience due to its ability to bounce signals off the ionosphere, but the quality of the transmission can be compromised by interference and atmospheric conditions. Longwave radio, on the other hand, is less affected by interference and is useful for transmitting signals over long distances.

Both shortwave and longwave radio have their strengths and weaknesses and are used for different purposes.


How Far Can a Shortwave Radio Reach?

Shortwave radio has been around for almost a century, but its capabilities to reach far distances remain a topic of interest to many enthusiasts. A typical shortwave radio can reach up to thousands of miles, depending on several factors. These include the time of day, season, weather conditions, and the power of the radio transmitter.

During the day, the ionosphere is denser and can reflect more radio waves, making it easier for signals to traverse long distances. At night, the ionosphere's density decreases, reducing the range of shortwave radios. In addition, season and weather conditions can affect radio signal strength, with colder temperatures and clear skies generally producing stronger signals.

The power of the radio transmitter also plays a significant role in determining how far a shortwave radio can reach. The higher the wattage of the transmitter, the farther the signal can travel. However, there are legal limits to the amount of power that can be transmitted, depending on the country's regulations. In conclusion, shortwave radios can reach far distances, but the range depends on various factors.

Nevertheless, with proper tuning and equipment, shortwave radio enthusiasts can communicate with other enthusiasts from around the world.

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How to Choose a Shortwave Radio?

When choosing a shortwave radio, it is important to consider the various frequency bands it covers. A good shortwave radio should be able to receive signals in the AM, FM, SW (shortwave), WB (weather band) and VHF (Very High Frequency) bands. While AM and FM bands are commonly found in most radios, the SW and WB bands are particularly important for shortwave radios. The SW band allows you to pick up signals from various parts of the world, while the WB band allows you to get real-time weather updates from your local area. The VHF band is important for aviation enthusiasts, as it allows them to tune in to air traffic control signals. Some radios also offer SSB (single sideband) which can enhance reception of weaker signals.

Raddy shortwave radio offers an extensive selection of features for shortwave listeners (SWLer). The RF760 and RF320 models both provide air band reception, enabling users to tune in to a variety of aviation communication channels. Additionally, the RF760 model offers the added benefit of SSB modulation, which is essential for tuning in to some international stations. With these features, Raddy shortwave radios provide a comprehensive listening experience that caters to the needs of SWLers who want to stay informed on global events.

Another factor to consider is portability. A good shortwave radio should be lightweight and easy to carry around. It should have a powerful battery that can last for hours, especially if you plan to use it outdoors or during emergencies. Additionally, the radio should have a sturdy build that can withstand rough handling. Some models also come with additional features such as a built-in flashlight, USB port, and micro SD card slot. These features can come in handy during power outages.

Thirdly, you'll want to consider the features and functions of the radio. Look for a model that offers a good tuning system, as well as clear and accurate sound quality. Raddy RF75A, RF760 and RF320 are digital tuning, especially RF320 has the finest tuning knobs. Other features to look for include a built-in clock, alarm, bluetooth connection, app remote control and memory presets, or its retro look. Ultimately, the best shortwave radio for you will depend on your specific needs and preferences.

RF320

RF760

RF75A

RF750

RF30

Band

Frequency Range

Sensitivity

Stored Stations

Battery

Bluetooth

w/ External Wire Antenna

SOS & Flashlight

APP Control

Earphone Jack

Micro SD Card

Audio Format

FM/AM/SW/VHF/WB/AIR@@FM: 64-108MHZ
AM: 520-1710KHZ
SW:3.20-21.95MHZ
VHF: 30.000-199.975MHZ
WB:162.400-162.550MHZ
AIR:118.00-138.00MHZ@@FM≤8dB
VHF≤8dB
AM≤86dB
SW≤40dB
AIR≤8dB@@995@@Replaceable@@✔@@✔@@✔@@✔@@✔@@Support Max 256GB@@MP3, WMA, WAV, APE, FLAC@@
FM/AM/SW/CB/VHF/UHF/WB/AIR@@FM: 64-108MHZ
AM: 520-1710kHz
SW: 2-30MHz
CB: 25.00-28.00MHz
VHF & UHF: 20.000-520MHZ
WX: 162.400-162.550 MHz
AIR: 118.00-138.00MHz@@FM: 1.5uv
AM: 2mV/M
SW: 30uV
CB: 10dBuV
VHF: -8dBuV
UHF: -8dBuV
WX:-8dBuV
AIR: 3uV@@700@@Replaceable@@@@✔@@ @@ @@ ✔@@ @@ @@
FM/AM/SW/VHF/WB@@FM: 64-108MHZ
AM: 520-1710KHZ
SW:4.750-21.850MHZ
VHF: 30.000-199.975MHZ
WB:162.400-162.550MHZ@@FM≤8dB
VHF≤8dB
AM≤86dB
SW≤40dB@@369@@Fixed@@✔@@✔@@✔@@✔@@✔@@Support Max 256GB@@MP3, WAV, WMA@@
FM/AM/SW/WB@@FM: 87.5-108MHz
AM: 520-1720KHz
SW: 5.7-17.9MHz
WB: 162.400-162.550MHz@@FM≤8dB
MW≤86dB
SW≤32dB@@110@@Replaceable@@✔@@✔@@ @@ @@ @@Support Max 256GB@@MP3, AV, WMA@@
FM/AM/SW@@FM: 87-108MHz
AM: 522-1710KHz
SW: 4.75-21.85MHz@@ @@440@@Replaceable@@✔@@ @@ @@ @@✔@@Support Max 32GB@@MP3, WMA@@

Shortwave Listening Tips

  • Listen to Asia and Australia in the morning and listen to Europe at night.
  • No SW frequency operates 24 hours. You may not hear anything unless you are listening at the right time, or you may hear another language, or you may hear some other country sharing the frequency.
  • Many countries are better heard in non-English broadcasts. Explore the dial and you will hear many fascinating things, including exotic music.
  • Some stations only air a few minutes of English; or only in ID announcements (Mexico); or only language lessons (Ecuador).
  • Country of origin is shown. Many of the frequencies are relayed from elsewhere. In the case of China, all of them shown below are relays. Don't assume any particular frequency is actually coming directly from the originating country.
  • Some major countries no longer broadcast to North America intentionally, such as Australia, Germany, South Africa or the UK. Longer frequency lists for these give you more chances to hear something directed elsewhere.
  • More than one station may be involved under some countries, or even outside broadcasts to that country (Liberia, Nigeria, Sudan).
  • Many of the strongest signals from strictly religious broadcasters in the US and elsewhere are not shown.

 


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Conclusion

Shortwave radio may seem like an outdated technology, but it is still a valuable tool for communication, information, and entertainment. Its ability to travel long distances makes it a useful tool in areas where other forms of communication are not available, and its unique programming offers a perspective that can't be found elsewhere. Whether you are an amateur radio operator or simply curious about the world, shortwave radio is definitely worth exploring.


2 comments

  • Ron

    You can find SW broadcasting stations that are transmitting at the time, at this website…. https://www.short-wave.info/index.php

  • Earl

    I don’t see the SW frequency reference as mentioned in Shortwave Listening Tips.

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