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    radckh's Avatar
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    HD Radio here to stay?

    I was talking to a guy at a local car stereo place and he told me a couple things about HD Radio that I could not verify by Googling so I'm wondering if anyone here knows anything about these things:

    1) All radio stations must have a digital signal by 2014 - meaning every station will have an HD station.

    2) HD Radio signals can cover 100 miles - more than analog FM. Meaning I can get Denver HD stations while driving 60 miles away in Colorado Springs with a mountain range between us that is about 1,000 feet above my elevation.

    Thanks for your help!







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    Re: HD Radio here to stay?

    No and No.

    There is a date set for all digital in the FM band, but its not until 2016 or so (and will probably be pushed back further than that). At that time all channels will become "HD", and analog receivers will become useless.

    The way digital channels work, you will either hear it or you wont, so coverage is "better" to some but is not really true. You just wont get that static and "weak" signal sound when you get to the edge of the coverage area. That being said, an obstruction is an obstruction... if the mountain is in the way, its in the way of digital and analog signals. No getting around that...

    BTW, I am a 2way Radio Tech by trade, and deal with radio signal and propagation everyday.



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    Re: HD Radio here to stay?

    from what I understand hd radio range is significantly shorter than that of traditional radio. like joebob said it comes in or doesnt and because of that the range is a lot less unless you happen to live in a location where buildings, hills, mountains, or anything above ground doesnt exist.




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    Re: HD Radio here to stay?

    Quote Originally Posted by CrossoverOre View Post
    from what I understand hd radio range is significantly shorter than that of traditional radio. like joebob said it comes in or doesnt and because of that the range is a lot less unless you happen to live in a location where buildings, hills, mountains, or anything above ground doesnt exist.
    Different signal and frequencies travel diffrent distances depending on what your comparing




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    Re: HD Radio here to stay?

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverado SS View Post
    Different signal and frequencies travel diffrent distances depending on what your comparing
    comparing traditional fm to hd radio.




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    Re: HD Radio here to stay?

    There is no current mandate for broadcaster conversion nor will analog radios become obsolete.

    Wholesale statements about analog vs digital coverage are impossible. Every station is different just as every city is different. Stations have different classifications meaning different power levels and co/adjacent channel spacing. The maximum digital transmitting power also varies by station, but not every station is using the new maximums. By the same token, two stations with the same power, but with different antenna heights or arrays will have different coverage contours. Then there's differences in geography and adjacent-channel interference. And differences in receivers, antennas, static or in-motion.

    Simply put, some stations are going to have 100-mile digital coverage areas. Not many. 30-60 for the primary digital channel on commercial stations is going to be closer to expectations.

    Don
    CBS Radio




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    Re: HD Radio here to stay?

    Quote Originally Posted by DrDon View Post
    There is no current mandate for broadcaster conversion nor will analog radios become obsolete.

    <snip>

    Wholesale statements about analog vs digital coverage are impossible.Don
    CBS Radio
    Bingo on both counts.

    The conversion mandate that television went through was driven by the FCC so they could recover and sell the frequencies to the cell phone market for big bucks. FM is too low frequency to be viable for that.

    As a current HD listener, I gotta say it's a mixed bag. The good news is that some stations run multiple signals off the same carrier and some of them are commercial free. The bad news is that HD receivers are less sensitive than analog FM and the effective range is poor. I get dropouts in certain areas where normal FM would be fine. My HU doesn't have the option to turn HD off unless I switch it to "mono" which is unacceptable. If I had known this I would never have bought one. HD has a loooong way to go.



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