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archrenov8
01-30-2008, 08:42 PM
I am trying to decide if it is worthwhile to order an HD radio in my X3. It is not that expensive, but I am not sure if there are any down-sides to getting it over the base setup. In the New York area, what improvements might I expect in terms of sound quality or listening choices, if any?

Sonoman707
01-30-2008, 09:29 PM
Note: Evlengr's X3 transmission has almost got him and his family killed - several times.

Carry on with HD radio discusssion...

kjboyd
01-30-2008, 09:32 PM
god some people are just total Aholes.

While it's nice to have the HD integrated, you can find it much cheaper elsewhere.. it's an overpriced option in my opinion.

Evlengr
01-30-2008, 10:03 PM
I will ignore Sonoman 707's infantile comments. If you have something constructive to add please do, otherwise crawl back in the hole whence you came.

As an RF Engineer I can tell you its a nice novelty nothing more.

The reception is very poor, the sound quality is not improved due to a process known as "Blending".

They have to reduce the processing to mimic that of the analog signal, and most Program Directors in radio don't see it as a positive addition but only more work and therefore do not offer any real program content.

Also ibiquity the fore runner of this technology's design releases there binding agreement preventing radio stations from running ads in July so it wont be commercial free much longer.

It typically costs a radio station $150k to set up HD and they need to recoup their losses.

Andrew*Debbie
01-31-2008, 03:18 AM
You can see a list of stations at hdradio.com

From the listing, you can see that a lot of what EE says is true. For example, AM 820 News/Talk is repeated on 93.9-3. But there could be something you want to listen to. :dunno:

archrenov8
01-31-2008, 05:31 AM
I did see that WFUV runs a second music station, and plans to add a third in the fall. Also, they run music on the weekends, whereas on their standard FM station, you don't get music on the weekends. And WNYC runs alternate music programming 24 hours a day, according to their website.

Evlengr
01-31-2008, 06:15 AM
Arch That is true, but wont hold much longer. For radio stations to support that kind of expense and not show a return can only be supported in top ten markets. That means that 90% of the other markets will need to show a high ROI. Since streaming is quantifiable and approx $145k cheaper a year it will be the chosen venue and analog radio will always work. IBOC imo and many many many many other engineers will go the way of Beta or in this case AM Stereo. Radio is a business and they like any other need to show a profit. HD isn't doing that after 5 years. Streaming is.

If you remember when cell phones were analog and they had a much greater range --unlike digital phones that sound great but will cut out abruptly. Digital is either on or off.

I can say that AM IBOC (the real term for HD) is defintely superior. Since I will be reviewing the Dallas and New York Market areas today I will let you know what your coverage will be--- if you like?

BruceOmega
01-31-2008, 09:16 AM
FWIW,

I opted for HD-radio in my 535Xi as I considered the additional cost for HD not bad considering the investment I was making in the vehicle. I was already getting Logic 7 and Sirius, and wanted to try out the additional sources offered by HD.

I have no idea what will happen in the future, and I have not explored many of the HD stations available in the DC area yet, but I have found one HD station that I really like. Its the HD-2 band of 103.5. HD-1 is a news station, which I listen to a lot. The HD-2 band has alternative rock music, quite different than commercial FM, and I really enjoy that.

Bruce

Lance Alot
01-31-2008, 01:47 PM
The reception is very poor, the sound quality is not improved due to a process known as "Blending".


We got HD in our car, but I haven't been able to actually use it yet. I'm hoping that one day we manage to get our car back in the US to try it out :cry:

In any case, I read that you can choose to go to analog mode when the signal strength is weak to avoide the reception issues. I also read that HD Radio is CD quality while standard radio is not. Is there any truth to that or was it just propoganda? I got it from a manufacturer of HD radios, so it could just be a load of crap. Thoughts?

bmwadam
01-31-2008, 02:11 PM
Ive got an aftermarket HD radio in my e36. When the signal works, it sounds great on the few channels that offer it. There is clearly an increase in sound quality. BUT the problem is it is intermittent. When you are driving it likes to "cut and fade" so to speak, back to analog.

I am not versed in the technical aspects of the tech. as Ev. is, BUT I will say that the spotty reception and the lack of choice in my area does not make it worth my time.

Andrew*Debbie
01-31-2008, 02:34 PM
Ive got an aftermarket HD radio in my e36. ... BUT I will say that the spotty reception and the lack of choice in my area does not make it worth my time.

Does your e36 have antenna diversity? Does your aftermarket radio use it?

The X3 has 3 antennas. The radio scans all 3 and picks the one with the best signal. That could help with reception.



I also read that HD Radio is CD quality while standard radio is not.


The part about standard radio is true. Just pop a real CD into your headunit.

I wouldn't call 50 or 100kbps CD quality, but that is me. 3 or 4 times that data rate with a decent codec and I doubt I could hear the difference on a car stereo.

Poor quality pirated .mp3s have become the accepted norm for sound quality. sigh.


I can't wait to hear what EE has to say on this.

kettleone
01-31-2008, 05:14 PM
Ive got an aftermarket HD radio in my e36. When the signal works, it sounds great on the few channels that offer it. There is clearly an increase in sound quality. BUT the problem is it is intermittent. When you are driving it likes to "cut and fade" so to speak, back to analog.

I am not versed in the technical aspects of the tech. as Ev. is, BUT I will say that the spotty reception and the lack of choice in my area does not make it worth my time.

This cut and fade issue is why it is an option I regret adding. Maybe if I lived in an area with a strong signal that always stayed locked on to the station my opinion would be different, but it is not worth $500 bucks. IMHO

Evlengr
01-31-2008, 06:22 PM
The Cut and Fade issue is what is called "Blending". HD ERP (effective radiated power) is limited like many other things by the FCC. Ibiquity is currently lobbying the FCC to allow an increase in power (as per Radio and Records).

IF this happens (and it is highly unlikley due to bureaucracy right now) it will take at least two years to become implemented. Then there is another two years before the equipment needed will roll out.

Until then the Cut and Fade will not go away no matter what antennae system you get. Dual Diversity will not impact this.

Most smaller markets are using a wait and see before they spend the money on HD as well http://www.jg-tc.com/articles/2008/01/31/features/doc47a159a5d7530796056506.txt.


A/D interestingly enough a recent study has shown that people over 40 are quicker to differentiate between mp3 and wav (lossless) quality (Popular Science). Whereas younger demographics could not. Good sound is a learned process in most cases. And despite how loud you may have played music in your youth you knew/know what a good cut should sound like.

The technology that will blow everyone out of the water will be mobile broad band streaming.

Bamafn1
02-01-2008, 12:40 PM
Note: Evlengr's X3 transmission has almost got him and his family killed - several times.

Carry on with HD radio discusssion...

Ok, soda just came out of my nose! :rofl:

Evlengr
02-01-2008, 01:12 PM
Ok, soda just came out of my nose! :rofl:

Old news...

Evlengr
02-01-2008, 04:52 PM
Added update: "The NAB and HD Radio developer iBiquity Digital Corp. will lean on the FCC in an effort to increase the broadcast power of FM HD Radio stations to 10 decibels" a portion of comments from radio trade rag.

If this happens The contour map of coverage will increase significantly for those plagued by bad reception and the "Blending" effect of which I mentioned earlier.

Still not sold on HD, but for those that are wondering I figured you should know both sides of the debate.