Receiver Confidential
How I See It ... And Hear It
One man's Opinions and Experiences
From time-to-time, someone will ask my opinion about this or that. Usually the question comes from a person just starting out in the hobby of SWLing. Or maybe it's a non-technical hobbiest who is experiencing difficulties or is dissatisfied with his/her current setup. Well, my opinion is no better, or worse, than anyone elses opinion. However, I am flattered to share whatever it is that can, or may, help. I am no more an expert than anyone else who has been doing this stuff for more than half-a-century. I suppose my greatest assets are my notes and observations of the conditions, circumstances, and situations and my subjective feelings of a particular device, born of it's lasting impressions - how much it has affected me.
Read this three times slowly: "I have never, ever, listened to a communication receiver's internal loudspeaker for any length of time, if I could avoid it!"
The list of radios on the following pages is just a beginning. There are a lot more to talk about, but these are the ones I felt compelled to discuss first. Here's my small print, disclaimers, qualifiers, and caveats:
Audio Caveat: It should be noted that all (I repeat, "ALL"), of my radios are connected to a suitable high quality external speaker most of the time. Obviously, when enjoying a delightful beverage at poolside, or lying supine in the hammock, then it's usually just the internal speaker playing.
Antenna caveat: Test Conditions: Over the years I have had many antennas, of wide and varying type, size, and configuration. At this location (30+ years) I have always had the following three antennas. They have been moved slightly up or down, repaired or replaced with different types of wire, and slightly lengthened or shortened, but bascially, they have remained "technically" unchanged.
1. An 80 meter (essentially a 120 (+/-) foot North/South (broadsided to E/W) dipole usually between 25 and 40 feet elevation, fed without a balun through either 50 or 75 Ohm coax..
2. An 80 meter sloper, which is about 65 feet long at 45 degrees, North-facing, and top fed against the 45 foot steel tower, without a balun through either 50 or 75 Ohm coax..
3. A 160 meter, 1/4 wavelength, end-fed, about 130 feet long over terrain that varies from 25 feet to 35 feet below. It is fed with a 9:1 transformer with opposed windings on a type 75 torroidal core in the voltage-winding configuration. It is fed with 50 Ohm coax.

Very important:
My ground system is a farm of many solid copper pipes around my home, which are electrically bonded to the electrical service entrance, cable, telephone and fresh water (iron pipe from the street) services, along with my tower, the metal antenna cable entrance window and the shack's equipment bus bar. For the sake of signal quality, RF feedback, equipment protection and personel safety, there are no grounds that are independent of the bonded system. Please read and learn about proper grounding and bonding techniques and practices, which can be found on the Internet.
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