Monday, October 20, 2008

Vextra VX2093

Another in my cheap-o radio review series.

Got it at Rite-Aid pharmacy for $9.95.

-sensitivity: fair at low end, ~OK across the rest of the band
-selectivity: poor but predictable..captured by strong stations,
and it goes catch a good number
--tuning: tweaky. You have to understand you will get 3 hits
on a station (the discriminator curve) and park it in the middle.'s workable, though

--a lot like FM..OK sensitivity, wide selectivity..
some stations lost to locals. Tunes very nicely though
--the reception washes out above 1300 khz, though..

---not much low freq. at all
---very clear high end
---the cheap headphones are surprisingly good for AM
---the speaker is loud but really tinny
---the headphone jack pushes mono in both L and R of
headphones: excellent compromise

Overall, the tuning is nowhere near like the pocket radio
Sony ICF-S10MK2. The Sony is way ahead, for $10.
And if you use a mono adaptor and attenuator headphones,
the Sony has way better fidelity.

But...the headphone jack on this hooks up properly,
and the volume does not blast headphones like
with the Sony. For local AM and FM, and walking
around, this is OK. Just don't expect much for
rural service or late night AM-DX.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

the Craig shower radio

Since there aren't many easily bought radios out
there in the stores these days, and since CVS had
the Craig "AM/FM splashproof shower radio"
on sale for $6.50 (down from $13), I figured I
would do a review of this cheapie
(Craig model csr1301). Quick take:

--OK sensitivity (not super) across the whole band
--tuning is a bit tricky, but the damping of the water
seal gives it good stability when you take your hand off
--selectivity was good..I could seperate NYNY 1010 WNDS
from 1030 WBZ (much closer, same direction) no problem
--sensitivity: fair to good. Gets all the locals fine, but barely
gets the local-tiny stations. The $10 Sony pocket unit
is much better (though, it's better than scads of radios
under $50 on AM)
---house noise: strangely, not trounced by dimmers and
CFL lights as badly as others....not bad at all!

--almost pointless below 92 FM. Got 1 out of 6 usuals.
--92-108 FM: sensitivity fair-good, selectivity bad
--drift: a bit squirrely

--midrange only
--honky tone when cranked

If you want AM news in Suburbia, in the shower this is a good radio.
Otherwise, it's OK for the price (shower-proofing is
worth something), but you get what you pay for.
If you have strong local FM and aren't picky about station,
you can get some toons.

Summary: Good AM...otherwise, issues, especially if you live
in weaker signal zones.