Monday, February 04, 2019

World Radio TV Handbook Review-2019

published in the January issue of Spectrum Monitor e-magazine

World Radio TV Handbook 2019 Review
Gayle Van Horn 

The annual release of the World Radio TV Handbook is always an anticipated event for worldwide radio listener’s, both the casual program listener, or an enthusiastic radio aficionado.

This year’s 73rd edition, begins with an editorial and preview by Nicholas Hardyman, Publisher. If you are in the market for a software-defined radio, two receivers will undoubtedly pique your interest. The recent release of WinRadio Excalibur Sigma has been awarded by WRTH as the best and most capable SDR on the market or perhaps the world.

If a budget-friendly hobby is required, consider the SDRPlay RSPDuro.In a lower price class, it was reviewed as a remarkable receiver for its functionality and would represent an excellent choice. Equally impressive is the review of the Airspy HF +, awarded Best Value in an SDR. Additional reviews include the Reuter RDR51 ‘Pocket’ receiver, and XHData D-808, an ‘ultra-portable’ radio, for its low-cost and small size AM and FM portable. Scanner fans in the market for a high-grade wideband hand-held scanning receiver, will find the Icom IC-R30 review, informative and recommended as a good contender to consider.

The Features section begins with HF Curtain Arrays. Written by former BBC Senior Transmitter Engineer, Dave Porter G4OYX, featuring a behind the scenes look at the history and development of classic HF broadcast antennas.

Freelance writer and active radio enthusiast, Hans Johnson, explores two radio stations entitled Broadcasting for Peace. Both stations, Dandal Kura Radio International, and Radio Ndarason International, share their goal to bring programming to a troubled region seeking peace.

YLE foreign news journalist and radio hobbyist Mike Mäkeläläinen, travels to the Marshall Islands national broadcaster, Radio Marshall Islands. The writer shares the latest from V7AB and the station’s future. Though a small station, Radio Marshall Islands transmits a very powerful voice which reaches far beyond the Pacific region.

A major new development in 2018, was the TWR Bonaire inauguration, as the most powerful radio station in the Western Hemisphere. Known as ‘Shine 800,’ the faith-based station broadcast from a new 440 kW transmitter. TWR Broadcast Engineer Dave Pedrsen outlines this massive project in the TWR Bonaire feature.

Closing the features section, is the annual round-up of digital broadcasting. This year’s edition investigates the distinctive characteristics of analogue and digital transmission systems. Predictions are that medium wave and FM broadcasting will remain viable to a world audience.

Ulf-Peter Hoppe, adjunct professor of physics, updates the annual HF Broadcasting Reception Conditions Expected During 2019. His predictions are for a good year of reception on the HF broadcasting bands.

The National Radio section includes domestic radio stations broadcasting to a national listening audience on medium wave, shortwave, FM and DAB. Listings are grouped by country and include frequencies, transmitter information, power kW, contact and website information.

The International Radio list the same information for international broadcasters, airing to a world listening audience.

Clandestine and Other Target Broadcast, cover stations broadcasting politically motivated programming, or those targeted at zones of local or regional conflicts. A one-page listing of Religious Broadcasters Cross Reference Table closes this section.

The Frequency List, includes by-frequency listings of world medium wave stations. SW Stations of the World, is a by-frequency listing of stations, followed by International Broadcasts in English, French, German, Portuguese and Spanish, in a 24-hour UTC format. DRM International Broadcast, are 24-hour UTC listings of worldwide stations airing on DRM. Closing this section is the National Television listing information in country order.

Lastly, this edition contains an extensive Reference section of country indexes and codes, world transmitting sites, radio clubs, organizations and institutes, selected Internet resources, WRTH abbreviations and symbols. Additional information; Transmitter Sites (Location and Decode Tables) for international transmitter sites, Domestic SW Transmitter Sites, and Standard Time & Frequency Transmissions, containing contact information and schedules for worldwide time and frequency stations.

The 73rd edition of World Radio TV Handbook, is a wealth of vital information for any radio or television hobbyist. It remains the most comprehensive exemplary reference book, and a must-have for your listening post. I highly recommend this excellent publication.

World Radio TV Handbook 2019, is available from the WRTH website