[AMRadio] Wanted: Receiver - New England

JT Croteau jt.n1ese at gmail.com
Sun Feb 17 19:58:38 EST 2008

I want to thank everyone who has responded so far, both on and off
list, to this thread.  Brett, N2DTS, said, a couple posts posts back,
that I need to take a better inventory of my priorities so let me try
and clarify what they are to me.

>From what I've read, there are two categories of receivers;
"Battle-Fields" and Hi-Fidelity and it is very difficult to have your
cake and eat it to.  Unfortunately, I am trying to have a mixture of
both but leaning more towards Hi-Fi because it is the pure love of the
sound of AM that is driving me to setup this AM station.

I am learning that there is no perfect receiver and it is very hard
for a newbie like me to pick one.  I wish I had the luxury to afford
to buy several different ones like some people but I can only afford
one receiver at the moment   A big problem for newbies is the fact
that EVERYONE has differing opinions for each model and it's often
hard to get two people to totally agree on the same model.  For
example, I'll ask for opinions on an ABC-123 and one person will
reply, "oh yeah, it's awesome on AM" while another will say "stay
away, it's only good for slopbucket signals".  If I could afford
multiple purchases, it'd be much easier to take a gamble and
experiment but I can't so it's very difficult to choose from just
looking at specs and "opinions".

With this said:

   AM 75M and 40M coverage is my primary interest at this time, I will
NEVER be using the radio to tune in slopbucket nor CWer.  SWL and 160M
coverage would be nice as well but it will be a couple years before I
have space for a 160M antenna.

   Hi-Fidelity is near the top of my must haves but not if it's
results in a huge hit on receiver performance.  However, I definitely
don't want bottom of the barrel communications grade audio.  I've been
in some shacks where the audio fills the room and you can feel the
audio down to your bones.  I want to achieve this or as close as I can
get within my budget.

    Looks, style, size, and weight don't really matter as it's what's
inside the box that counts to me.  Ideally the smaller the better and
if it fits in a standard 19" rack, all the better as I have plenty of
rack space.

    Budget - Yeah, this will always be an issue for me.  But I can
realistically afford to spend a max. of $400 on a receiver so I may
not be able to get super Hi-Fi with this budget but I would think that
I should be able to still find something with very good fidelity.   If
I had the money to go all out, I'm the type of person who definitely
would so I am not trying to cheap out on this.  But I do want to get
something now rather than save an wait.. patience and me have never
gotten along.

Since my first post a couple days ago, I've been reading a bit about
Hallicrafters SX-17's and SX-42's with their push-pull 6V6's and how
they can really make some very nice audio - a couple people seem to
really like these.  However, for some reason, these two rigs don't
seem to be mentioned much.. are they genuine "sleepers" in this case?
The SX-17 appears to have good sensitivity and good selectivity with
an IF bandwidth switch actually works.  I think I read that the narrow
position is somewhere around 4-5 kc and the wide is somewhere around
10-12 kc.

Has anything I've said made sense and may point me to more specific
models of receivers I should be looking at?

Thanks again.

JT Croteau, N1ESE - Manchester, NH (FN42gx)
Contest Manager, TARA Skirmish

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