Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Executive Satellit Shortwave Radio Debut from Eton

Eton has announced to release new shortwave radios Executive Satellit and Executive Traveler.

+ Executive Satellit - Eton

+ Executive Traveler - Eton

The Executive Satellit has updated for frequency range, body color and a supplied accessory.

The new Satellit can receive VHF DAB from 174.928 - 239.2MHz(international version only). The new Satellit colors silver, not black. And the new Satellit has a brown leather case instead of a shoulder go-bag.

The Executive Traveler also adds a DAB receiver for international version. Body color and the supplied accessory are almost same as the Executive Satellit.

So how will the black Satellit and the black Traveler III be? The answer seems to be discontinued. Eton product page says that colors of the Traveler III and the Satellit are now silver only, which indicates that Eton starts selling upgraded Satellit and Traveler III.

Although appearances of the "Executive" "Silver" models are not identical to "Black" we own, are there any internal differences? Is Sync detector improved? Higher sensitivity? Quicker response to audio on LW-SW? Lower audio distortion at low volume?

The Executive series are in production before selling. We can check more information on Many questions are to solved when available.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Ohm Electric released Cardboard Radio RAD-T170N

Ohm Electric, a Japanese distributor of some electric appliances, has released and started selling a radio made of cardboard.

+ AudioComm Cardboard Radio [product code]07-8689 | Ohm Electric (Japanese)

AudioComm is name of a brand which is labeled on the Ohm Electric product. Description of the cardboard radio RAD-T170N on the site says "An innovative radio made 'from' cardboard" in Japanese.

The RAD-T170N cardboard radio has FM/AM bands. The power is 3 x AA and lasts up to 55-57 hours. The size is 8.66"(W) x 5.51"(H) x 2.46"(D) ( 22(W) x 14(H) x 6.25(D) cm ) and the weight is 0.432 lbs / 6.91 oz / 196 grams.

The receiver has 530-1605kHz of AM and 76-95MHz of FM. The circuit seems to be powered by DSP because of too short battery life. The frequency step also seems to be customized for Japan.

To exchange batteries, release the rear cover made of cardboard. The battery box, tuning dial, power/volume knob, band selector and telescopic antenna are not made of cardboard.

If you put a cup of tea / coffee / wine, you will store smell of what you put on surface of the RAD-T170N, which is one of the memory function. If the cardboard radio had DC IN jack and caught in fire, we could use the burning radio as a heating appliance.

Pro. will be disposable (needless to say). We can throw the cardboard radio into fire and make use of firework with radio. As batteries will be exploded in the fire, we will be able to have a fun to the firework with radio programs.

Okay, price of the RAD-T170N is about $20. If you enjoy characteristics of cardboard, the RAD-T170N radio would be best.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Review : Toshiba LE TY-SR55 Radio

A stereo radio TY-SR55 made by Toshiba LE Trading came to me. Let's check details of it.
Toshiba LE  TY-SR55

The TY-SR55 is an AM/FM stereo digital tuning radio with full range stereo speakers. It powers three "C" alkaline batteries and works up to 160 hours. Frequency range is 522-1620kHz with 9kHz step of AM and 76-108MHz with 100kHz step of FM. No RDS and DAB/DAB+ are built in because those are currently not available in Japan.

The size is 8.66"W x 4.72"H x 2.17"D. The weight is about 1.8lbs. The audio output is 1 watt of total with two stereo speakers which can be used in the noisy area. There has no bluetooth and no external audio input jack.

The TY-SR55 has not only a handle but also a shoulder belt. You can hang the TY-SR55 on the trees, poles and knobs on the doors to use.

The front panel places a LCD panel to display frequency, preset buttons and manual tuning +/- buttons.
No clock, alarm, sleep timer equipped with. The LCD has orange backlit. It turns on after you operate then, turns off in 10 seconds automatically when working with batteries. It must maintains on status while using supplied AC adapter by the specification however, it sometimes turned off in some conditions when I checked. This might be a minor bug.

There are two slide switches, power and band selector on the top.

It also has a stereo mini jack for phones and an external power input on the left,

and has a volume knob on the right. It turns right to maximize the volume.

Number of stages of the telescopic antenna is six. There is some clearance between the root and the second stage, which is rattling.

The battery cover is separated from the TY-SR55. We have to put in power when removing. In other words, it is hard to come off.

Stereo lamp turns on when you receive a stereo station. Leak of the light lets us read the LCD information in a dark place. Sound is clear, no distortion. Sensitivity achieves high level in the class of cheep radios like other DSP radios. Especially, sensitivity of the AM receiver is almost equal to SONY ICF-SW7600GR.

Next, we compare the TY-SR55 with a similar SONY SRF-A300 (discontinued) for appearances, audio quality, stereo separation, sensitivity and noise.
TY-SR55 and SRF-A300

Size of the SRF-A300 is bigger than that of TY-SR55. While the TY-SR55 is superior to the SRF-A300 for audio quality (bass and treble), sensitivity and S/N ratio, stereo separation which the TY-SR55 has is inferior to the SRF-A300. Even when stereo / mono switch on the SRF-A300 is set to mono, SNR of the TY-SR55 is still better.

Backlit illumination of the TY-SR55 exceeds SRF-A300. Tuning display on the SRF-A300 can faintly be read at dark night when the backlit turns on. Needles to say as to the TY-SR55 any more.
TY-SR55 and SRF-A300

This time we have checked details of the TY-SR55 and differences between other similar radio. The Toshiba LE TY-SR55 has high sensitivity, clear sound considering that it is in the cheep class though not better than many portable audio speakers over $100 such as XDR-V1BTD.

It has cheap appearances but lasts up to 6 days through day and night and has better performance than expected.

Conn. is supplied AC adapter. The AC adapter send out strong noise to TY-SR55 and AM band is filled with noise. Concern for noise is required when using the supplied AC adapter with the TY-SR55. The best way is to use batteries only or to listen FM radio stations only.

TY-SR55 radio

Other stereo portable radios with digital tuners, handle and shoulder belt are not found around Japanese market now. The TY-SR55 is a unique radio.