HD Radio OTA home tuner

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Grant B, Jul 18, 2006.

  1. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    I keep hearing about HD Radio and I started looking how much a home tuner would cost but all I can find are receivers with the tuner built in.
    Anyone know of such a beast?
    Any other hints or tips would be great!
    Thanks
    Grant
     
  2. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Grant: before you blow any money on any form of HD radio, I would read this discussion (among others):

    "We've been robbed"

    And it's easy to guess who the shills are in that thread. [​IMG]

    IMO any compressed format that uses a max of 96kbps is NOT "CD quality". What a load of crap. And if the station uses that format's multicasting feature, that bitstream figure can get cut in half.

    One of my favorite stations here, KLDE, started using the HD format and since then there is always static present on my car's radio (a Delco Concert II system) when there used to be none. My Technics receiver at home has a lot less relatively speaking but its still there. Other HD-enabled stations are static-free so far (93.7, classic rock) but 94.5 the "alternative" station has periodic fits of static I never heard before.

    As far as FM not being able to sound good, while this is a subjective thing, personally speaking that's also a load of marketing-based cow poop. It has the POTENTIAL to sound nearly like a CD *if* the broadcaster wants it to i.e. if loads of compression aren't used and volume limiters are used sensibly. On stations that still use such audio-friendly practices (getting very rare these days unfortunately) if you don't listen critically you can be fooled into thinking your own CD player is the source. College, jazz & classical stations are the best bets to hear this - here in Houston the local Pacifica station* also has such a sound. And as long as reception is good, even at home background noise is nearly inaudible - much of the hiss you hear on many FM stations is because of the overcompression and limiters being used (along with the music, low level sonic artifacts like tape hiss and equipment noise are also brought up in volume).

    And to make matters even worse, sometimes much worse, MP3s are used as many stations' music source.

    There's a reason separate component/high quality tuners used to be widely available & in all levels of quality (Pioneer, Technics etc up to McIntosh). This is an excellent site to check them out: FMtunerinfo.com


    * this station plays pretty much every music genre out there, except classical. Tonight is one my favorite of theirs, the "Soular Grooves" show w/live DJs, though sometimes they play too much smooth jazzy-ish stuff
     
  3. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    Lance
    Thanks very much, you opened my eyes...er my ears on this one.
    One of the reasons I was interested was the previous company I worked for was The Harris Corp, and their Broadcast Division was developing the HD Transmitters.
    Too bad it got muddled once again.
    And I'll earmark the money for another dream
    Thanks Again!
    Grant
     

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