Thursday, April 14, 2016

Panasonic & Zambia

The DRM Consortium is pleased to welcome Panasonic as its newest member.  Panasonic joined other DRM members at the recent DRM General Assembly held in Germany.

DRM is the choice for Zambia, according to Mr Eustace Nkandu, Director
at the Independent Broadcasting Authority of this country who stressed
that: “Zambia wants to commence the process of digital migration for
radio and the position is that DRM is the most favoured digital sound

The regulatory body in Zambia has been asked to spearhead the country’s digital migration for radio. As a result, the regulator has sent out
letters to all radio stations licensed in Zambia to send their submissions on digital migration. This will be followed by a meeting of the key stakeholders for further discussions.

(Both stories from the DRM April Newsletter)

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Car Shortwave Radio BST-1 First Impressions

I've received, installed and played with the BST-1 in my car for the last week. Not only do I find this receiver fun listening, but the installation was a snap!

The 2 button remote takes some getting used to, but I have almost mastered and memorized the functions already. Last night I added and deleted some channels. 

Mr. Studenberg at Expert Technology Studios, LLC via was pleased to hear that I was having such success with the pre-programmed channels. The channels that come already installed in the unit are most suited to Midwest and Eastern USA. I added some RNZI outlets too.

So far, I have enjoyed armchair copy on WWCR, WTWW, WEWN, BBC, Radio Australia, Radio New Zealand International, Radio Havana Cuba, CB radio and 80M AMers. This is a kick cruising down the highway.

I don't have the benefit of the RDS/RBDS display on my dash, but I have several portables with that function. I have used them to help me program the unit. When I do, I am consistently seeing S8 signal levels on listenable stations.

Otherwise, I have been relying on my rusty CW to listen to the audible frequency output. This is simple to pick up, even for a tin-ear CW operator like me!

The simple trunk-lip mount antenna is available from and is highly recommended. It is short, attractive and easy to install. Just for fun, I tried several CB and ham whips with a magnetic mount base and they worked ok too.

I have experimented in the past with shortwave reception on the road. This is no easy task. Electrical interference from the car and surrounding buildings and vehicles is a serious problem when using a portable radio. The BST-1 almost completely eliminates those issues. The noise blanker and DSP circuitry work overtime to make listening while mobile a breeze. 

I'll be curious to see if the BST-1 can withstand the rigors of newer electric car interference however. If I can get access to one for a test, I'll let you know.

Although the BST-1 is not a DRM receiver, I am enjoying it day and night. I keep wanting to hop into the car and take a drive just to see what I will find. Mr. Studenberg has a real winner in this novel, simple to use and install, affordable shortwave receiver for the car.

For a better idea about the specs and functionality, take a look at the manual. The BST-1 turns out to be a really fun receiver and perhaps the ultimate mobile shortwave solution! I'll be begging him for a DRM model next.

If there is anything else you'd like to know about using the BST-1, just let me know. Read our interview with Mr. Studenberg to get the background on this exciting mobile receiver.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Car Shortwave Receiver gets FCC approval

"(We) Finally have FCC approval for the shortwave radio for car at and can now sell it." says the email from Mr. Studenberg at Expert Technology Studios, LLC. about the new BST-1 car shortwave solution.

This is really exciting! Fred has assembled the best state of the art technology and functions into a clean product that really doesn't require "installation" per-se. Anyone attending NASB in Nashville this June can see it in action.

This is not DRM related news, but the fact is - we love shortwave! If you are reading this, you understand the magic shortwave brings. "Look Ma, no internet required!"

I will review the unit on its analogue shortwave merits soon. Suffice it to say, this is really one of the only options for mobile shortwave that offers a plug-and-play solution.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Avion gets mixed reviews from DRMNAers

The Avion DR-1401 has been out awhile, and the overall word on the street is not great. As with the Newstar DR-111, the Avion can have firmware upgrades. Let's hope that improves the situation.

So far we have heard about units arriving fully-bricked and units with serious sensitivity issues. Analogue appears lackluster too.

Often it appears that the ergonomics of DRM receivers to date have been user-hostile at best. Perhaps only engineers make radios, not radio enthusiasts! It has been suggested that dongle based receivers to be used with mobiles and tablets may be the answer? I guess we need to wait and see.

Monday, February 22, 2016

The Gospell (sic) according to Newstar

Good News (pun intended)!

We received word today that Newstar has been acquired by Gospell Digital Technology Co., Ltd. Note that the following text includes "Gospell will continue on DRM development and business."

Here is the text of the official news release:

Dear Newstar Customers,

We are pleased to announce Newstar Electronics has recently been acquired by Gospell Digital Technology Co.,ltd. Patents and technology of Newstar will be transferred to Gospell. This acquisition will further enable Gospell to leverage best practices and look at new opportunities in the digital radio receiver market.

Gospell Digital Technology Co.,Ltd. (GOSPELL) is a private hi-tech enterprise with R&D, manufacturing, business consultancy and planning, trade, delivery, project implementation and after sales service, acting as a complete DTV and triple-play solution provider for Digital TV/OTT related projects.

Gospell will continue on DRM development and business.

For more information on DRM technology and products, please email
For more information about Gospell, please visit

This is the end of our journey with Newstar, but we are on to new adventures.  The management of Newstar would like to thank you for your past business and long time support. We look forward to these new opportunities and to working together in the future.

Chengdu Newstar Electronics Co., Ltd.
HC Liu