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The Wonderful World of HD Radio

 July 08, 2008 04:23 PM
 


The NAB, iBiquity, and virtually every congressman and Attorney General who steps in to this circus that we call a merger has been asking for the inclusion of HD chips into Satellite Radios. Of course, they never once mention who should pay for the design, the installation, the manufacturing, etc, etc, etc, but they claim they do it for the "benefit of the consumer." Let us take a look at that claim.
As of 2008, less than 500,000 HD radios had been sold in the US. According to Bridge Ratings survey in August of 2007, less than 1 percent of respondents said that they planned on buying an HD radio in the next 2 months. There obviously is not a high consumer demand for the HD radio. Must be something else.
A quick google of HD Radio brings up a long list of places selling HD Radios at Retail. The average price is around $125, with some units running less than $100. The problem? According to John Gorman's Blog, there are virtually no radios in Brick and Mortar stores for people to look at and play with. With such a new technology, you would figure that the HD radio alliance would be subsidizing those radios, to make them cheaper and more affordable.
Perhaps the HD advantage is it's sound quality and ease of use? Nope, and Nope. Again Gorman cites multiple complaints about a large bulky antenna (which you have to move manually until you pick up the signal), signal's fading in and out, and additional static on surrounding channels.
So what on earth can the HD Radio alliance and all of these top political figures mean when they say that HD radio is in the public interest?

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Perhaps it is because it is the American Public that has been paying a large portion of the development costs for HD radio? Yup, that is you and I. An FCC filing from North Carolina's Public Radio Stations cites "Just a few weeks ago, the House Appropriations Committee approved an additional $40 million to assist public readio stations' transition to HD radio technology. Clearly the Congress supports our transition to terrestrial digital broadcasting."
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) is "A private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It has already awarded well over 200 million dollars for the advancement of HD radio, and those awards are continuing to this date. A quick search for "Satellite Radio" "Sirius" "XM" or "SDARS" brings up only a single result: The award of "nearly" $2 million dollars in SDARS.

Yes, clearly Congress supports PUBLIC radio. Why then, does HD radio need Sirius and XM?

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(12)
 
7/8/2008 5:24:21 PM
HD Radio is a Farce! by PocketRadio
"HD Radio spinners claim a breakthrough year: Pulling a fast one" "According to a press release from the Alliance 330,000 HD receivers were sold last year. This is a 725 per cent increase from the 40,000 sets purchased a year earlier and therefore 2007 was a 'breakthrough year' for the technology. In 2008 they will sell a million of the things." http://tinyurl.com/4zgkaw With all of the returns for these defective radios that don't work, that number is probably closer to 100,000. Yup, Public Radio bilked Congress out of tens-of-millions for useless upgrades to HD Radio/IBOC. HD Radio is farce: http://hdradiofarce.blogsot.com
Rating: (3) (0)
7/8/2008 6:40:37 PM
radio pundit by paul vincent zecchino
HD jams AM&FM. That's the true BigRadio wants it - HD Jams. New products are designed to be 'backward compatible' so they'll work with existing systems. Not HD. Not merely backward incompatible. Backward destructive HD jams. What a wonderful world for those pushing this 'carny shill' at our expense. Not only are HD receivers costly and balky, you may soon pay to listen. HD crony-casters quietly promote 'CA', Controlled Access, meaning pay radio. For the first time in radio's history, HD yokes you to software-based broadcasts and radios. Might that portend Endless 'upgrades' for perpetual HD-caster revenue? What a wonderful world indeed! Paul Vincent Zecchino Manasota Key, Florida 08 July, 2008
Rating: (2) (0)
7/8/2008 11:01:20 PM
Electronic Engineer by Chuck Cullen
Thank you Mr. Savery. Your comments are excellent. It seems that those with a vested interest in HD radio are pressing to get someone else to fund receivers for the HD - like those who produce satellite radios. Your comments exposed the truth. Chuck Cullen, Columbia MD. private citizen and electronic engineer.
Rating: (2) (0)
7/8/2008 11:07:43 PM
GENIOUS!! by Newman
The guy that posted this is a genious. Very insightful and well documented. Newman - www.siriusbuzz.com
Rating: (2) (0)
7/9/2008 6:15:56 PM
HD is the biggest scam to come along in many years. by bobyoung
Great title for a right on look at HD, it is scam and what outrages me besides the fact that it ruins reception of many stations that I like(d) is that fact we are subsidizing it. Since when does the governmant hav a right to take our money and out it into private companies which obviously have already tanked? It is a monopoly and does not work, I've heard it and fooled around with some of the receivers and the technology is junk, the sound is no better and the receive range is somewhere around 5-10 miles on FM and AM on average and both also spill over into other stations' channels ruining reception. It is a big gimmick and scam. Digital!!!! is not the big buzzword it was ten years ago, no one cares anymore, they want results. I will not donate one penny to NPR until they drop this ill-advised fiasco which no wants and no one buys. HD in a Satrad receiver would be a worse forced inclusion than mandating all Satrad recevers include an 8 track player. Bob Young Millbury, MA
Rating: (2) (0)
7/27/2008 10:52:41 PM
Were the NC pubcasters bluffing? by Jack Hannold
When I read “The Wonderful World of HD Radio,” I found this part ambiguous: “An FCC filing from North Carolina’s Public Radio Stations cites ‘Just a few weeks ago, the House Appropriations Committee approved an additional $40 million to assist public readio [sic] stations’ transition to HD radio technology. Clearly the Congress supports our transition to terrestrial digital broadcasting.’” Yes, the quote said “Congress.” But couldn't the N.C. pubcasters have meant their state legislature, where the lower chamber is also called the House of Representatives? An appropriation of $40 million is a pittance in the Congressional budget -- too small to bother with! – not do mention only a fraction of what the CPB has already wasted on subsidizing iNiquity’s junk technology. But that sum is a significant, though hardly a huge, item in a state budget. More to the point, it costs about $100,000 to convert a high-powered FM to “HD” IBOC. So that's only enough for 40 major stations, or perhaps 50 stations, if 20 or so are lower-powered college stations. Sound like the number of non-commercial stations in NC? I went to http://www.thomas.gov/cp110/cp110query.html, checked the box for the Appropriations Committee, and entered "HD Radio" as the search term. The result? "There are no reports containing “HD Radio”. I also tried the web site of the North Carolina state legislature, and there were no results for “HD Radio” there either. So maybe they didn’t mean the state legislature after all. In making that statement, were the NC pubcasters bluffing on a busted flush?
Rating: (0) (0)
7/8/2008 5:24:21 PM
HD Radio is a Farce! by PocketRadio
"HD Radio spinners claim a breakthrough year: Pulling a fast one" "According to a press release from the Alliance 330,000 HD receivers were sold last year. This is a 725 per cent increase from the 40,000 sets purchased a year earlier and therefore 2007 was a 'breakthrough year' for the technology. In 2008 they will sell a million of the things." http://tinyurl.com/4zgkaw With all of the returns for these defective radios that don't work, that number is probably closer to 100,000. Yup, Public Radio bilked Congress out of tens-of-millions for useless upgrades to HD Radio/IBOC. HD Radio is farce: http://hdradiofarce.blogsot.com
Rating: (2) (1)
7/8/2008 6:40:37 PM
radio pundit by paul vincent zecchino
HD jams AM&FM. That's the true BigRadio wants it - HD Jams. New products are designed to be 'backward compatible' so they'll work with existing systems. Not HD. Not merely backward incompatible. Backward destructive HD jams. What a wonderful world for those pushing this 'carny shill' at our expense. Not only are HD receivers costly and balky, you may soon pay to listen. HD crony-casters quietly promote 'CA', Controlled Access, meaning pay radio. For the first time in radio's history, HD yokes you to software-based broadcasts and radios. Might that portend Endless 'upgrades' for perpetual HD-caster revenue? What a wonderful world indeed! Paul Vincent Zecchino Manasota Key, Florida 08 July, 2008
Rating: (1) (0)
7/8/2008 11:01:20 PM
Electronic Engineer by Chuck Cullen
Thank you Mr. Savery. Your comments are excellent. It seems that those with a vested interest in HD radio are pressing to get someone else to fund receivers for the HD - like those who produce satellite radios. Your comments exposed the truth. Chuck Cullen, Columbia MD. private citizen and electronic engineer.
Rating: (0) (0)
7/8/2008 11:07:43 PM
GENIOUS!! by Newman
The guy that posted this is a genious. Very insightful and well documented. Newman - www.siriusbuzz.com
Rating: (0) (0)
7/9/2008 6:15:56 PM
HD is the biggest scam to come along in many years. by bobyoung
Great title for a right on look at HD, it is scam and what outrages me besides the fact that it ruins reception of many stations that I like(d) is that fact we are subsidizing it. Since when does the governmant hav a right to take our money and out it into private companies which obviously have already tanked? It is a monopoly and does not work, I've heard it and fooled around with some of the receivers and the technology is junk, the sound is no better and the receive range is somewhere around 5-10 miles on FM and AM on average and both also spill over into other stations' channels ruining reception. It is a big gimmick and scam. Digital!!!! is not the big buzzword it was ten years ago, no one cares anymore, they want results. I will not donate one penny to NPR until they drop this ill-advised fiasco which no wants and no one buys. HD in a Satrad receiver would be a worse forced inclusion than mandating all Satrad recevers include an 8 track player. Bob Young Millbury, MA
Rating: (0) (0)
7/27/2008 10:52:41 PM
Were the NC pubcasters bluffing? by Jack Hannold
When I read “The Wonderful World of HD Radio,” I found this part ambiguous: “An FCC filing from North Carolina’s Public Radio Stations cites ‘Just a few weeks ago, the House Appropriations Committee approved an additional $40 million to assist public readio [sic] stations’ transition to HD radio technology. Clearly the Congress supports our transition to terrestrial digital broadcasting.’” Yes, the quote said “Congress.” But couldn't the N.C. pubcasters have meant their state legislature, where the lower chamber is also called the House of Representatives? An appropriation of $40 million is a pittance in the Congressional budget -- too small to bother with! – not do mention only a fraction of what the CPB has already wasted on subsidizing iNiquity’s junk technology. But that sum is a significant, though hardly a huge, item in a state budget. More to the point, it costs about $100,000 to convert a high-powered FM to “HD” IBOC. So that's only enough for 40 major stations, or perhaps 50 stations, if 20 or so are lower-powered college stations. Sound like the number of non-commercial stations in NC? I went to http://www.thomas.gov/cp110/cp110query.html, checked the box for the Appropriations Committee, and entered "HD Radio" as the search term. The result? "There are no reports containing “HD Radio”. I also tried the web site of the North Carolina state legislature, and there were no results for “HD Radio” there either. So maybe they didn’t mean the state legislature after all. In making that statement, were the NC pubcasters bluffing on a busted flush?
Rating: (0) (0)

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