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Top 10 Shortwave Radios 2016

For all you hams accessible, in addition to absolutely everyone who desires an emergency notification system in case of a natural disaster, check our selection of shortwave radios. But be warned, they may keep you up all night coming across music and information from all over the world.

Jensen JHD910BT Bluetooth Mini Radio JHD910BTDEWALT DCR018 18V/12V/20V MAX Compact Worksite RadioTecsun PL880 Portable Digital PLL Dual Conversion AM/FM, Longwave & Shortwave Radio with SSB (Single Side Band) ReceptionSangean WR-22BK AM/FM-RDS/Bluetooth/USB Table-Top Digital Tuning Receiver (Black)Degen DE1131 4-in-1 Touch Screen Controlled Portable AM/FM/SW Digital Radio, MP3 Player with Built-in 4GB Flash Memory and Micro-SD Card Reader, Voice Recorder & E-book ReaderC Crane CC Skywave AM, FM, Shortwave, Weather and Airband Portable Travel Radio with Clock and AlarmKaito Voyager Pro KA600 Digital Solar Dynamo,Wind Up,Dynamo Cranking AM/FM/LW/SW & NOAA Weather Emergency Radio with Flashlight, Reading Lamp Alert,Smart Phone Charger & RDS and Real-Time Alert, GreenSony ICF-SW7600GR AM/FM Shortwave World Band Receiver with Single Side Band ReceptionAmbient Weather WR-099-AC-KIT Compact Emergency Solar Hand Crank AM/FM/WeatherBand Digital Radio, Flashlight, Cell Phone Charger, Cables and AC AdapterEton Field AM/FM with RDS and Shortwave Radio, Black (NGWFB)

Shortwave Radio Basics

Shortwave radios provide an inexpensive, low-tech way for anyone in any part of the world to receive radio transmissions. Also known as high frequency, shortwave is transmitted just above the AM band on the radio spectrum. Radio waves at this frequency are reflected back to Earth from the ionosphere instead of being absorbed, allowing the signal to travel thousands of miles.

While originally developed for emergency military transmissions, shortwave is now used by governments, private organizations and amateurs alike to reach large populations across the globe. Because they travel such great distances, shortwave communications are not always as clear as your local FM station. Atmospheric conditions can even cause the signal to fade in and out, and you are more likely to get interference from stations on adjacent frequencies.

With all the advanced technology you have in your house, you may wonder if listening to the shortwave radio is worth the trouble, but part of the allure is the chance to explore stations from other countries and discover the unknown. A portion of the shortwave spectrum is even designated for amateurs who want to talk back and forth in two-way communication.

The practical advantage of having a shortwave radio is that it remains the only way to make direct communication from one country to another without an intermediary such as a satellite or cable company. In the event of a global disaster or zombie apocalypse, you'll be able to stay connected with the rest of the planet.

Even if the world isn't coming to an end, a shortwave radio is an important part of any emergency preparedness kit. Many models are available with solar panels or even a hand crank so they are guaranteed to function under any circumstances.

What's on Shortwave Radio?


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Before the advent of the internet, shortwave radio was the primary way many expats kept in touch with their homeland. Gaggles of college students would huddle around shortwave radios to listen to their national teams play soccer games and other sporting events. Families would forgo the nightly news on TV in favor of broadcasts from home.

Because of the internet and the proliferation of dozens of cable news channels, some governments have closed down or reduced their shortwave offerings. Despite this disappointing development, the shortwave spectrum continues to offer a vast landscape of programming options. There is still an avid community of shortwave hobbyists listening to and creating interesting and original content.

Aside from stations run by governments and major religious organizations, there are a few privately-owned international stations that sell blocks of airtime to a variety of groups to provide a wide range of music, entertainment, and educational programs. Segments of the spectrum are also blocked off for amateur usage, marine communications, and other utility functions.

One can argue that modern communications are killing shortwave listenership, but it is also making it easier than ever to explore the high-frequency universe. There are websites devoted to providing schedules of shortwave programming and even smartphone apps that list schedules and report ever-changing frequencies to help you track your favorite stations.

A Brief History of the Shortwave Radio


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The invention of shortwave radio technology is often attributed to Nobel Laureate and radio pioneer Guglielmo Marconi. He and his assistant Charles Samuel Franklin began a large-scale study in 1923 to determine if short wavelengths were suitable for long distance transmissions. His work led to the creation of the Beam Wireless Service that connected the United Kingdom to Canada in 1926. The service was expanded to Australia, South Africa and India in 1927.

There is evidence that amateur radio operators were the first to propagate a transatlantic shortwave signal. The lowest-frequency band considered to be shortwave, 1.8-2.0 MHz, was deemed useless for long distance communications and designated for amateur use. It was within this “useless” frequency that hundreds of North American amateurs were heard in Europe in 1922. The first two-way communications between North American and Hawaiian amateurs were also recorded in 1922 at the same wavelength.

Having their own frequency and newly available vacuum tubes made it possible for radio amateurs to experiment and make significant strides in long distance usage of shortwave technology, including the first transatlantic two-way contact in 1923.

The shortwave technology was such a cheap investment that it rapidly eclipsed the usage of the transoceanic cables for telegraph and television. By the late 1920's, over half of-of all long distance communications adopted the use of shortwave, ending the need for further investment new transoceanic cables and massive longwave wireless stations.


#10.Eton Field AM/FM with RDS and Shortwave Radio, Black (NGWFB)


This is a corporate/managerial improvement/triumph on the older Grundig model, which used two additional D batteries (to begin with). The information display is better. Two fewer buttons, and functions combined; the Lock button simplifies, such as with the stop/slow/fast tuning. I expect one or two other efficient surprises. Very pleased.


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#9.Ambient Weather WR-099-AC-KIT Compact Emergency Solar Hand Crank AM/FM/WeatherBand Digital Radio, Flashlight, Cell Phone Charger, Cables and AC Adapter


No electricity required or batteries to purchase, the WR-099 is available in an emergency when and where power is not available. The compact, water-resistant design is also great for camping and adventure travel.

You can fully charge the WR-099 through the USB/AC/DC adaptor, and when you need it, charge the cell phone/mp3/mp4/USB with no cranking. Some crank chargers require continuous hand cranking to charge a device.

The WR-099 high quality digital tuner provides assured access to news, weather information and illumination whenever and wherever you need it. The rubberized finish makes the WR-099 a robust radio for hiking and camping.

Ambient Weather's self-charge technology means unparalleled playtime performance, and the compelling design makes the WR-099 a great everyday radio, as well as the perfect companion in emergencies.


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#8.Sony ICF-SW7600GR AM/FM Shortwave World Band Receiver with Single Side Band Reception


Enjoy programming from around the globe with this FM stereo multi-band world band receiver radio. Listen to the airwaves in virtually any country with the ICF-SW7600GR multi-band world band receiver radio. Features include an AM (LW/MW/SW)/FM Stereo, which provides accurate reception with stereo FM capability over a wide range of frequencies and 10 Key Direct Access tuning, which lets you capture distant stations directly. A sharp LCD display provides digital frequency read-out of the selected station. And you can store to 100 of your favorite stations.


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#7.Kaito Voyager Pro KA600 Digital Solar Dynamo,Wind Up,Dynamo Cranking AM/FM/LW/SW & NOAA Weather Emergency Radio with Flashlight, Reading Lamp Alert,Smart Phone Charger & RDS and Real-Time Alert, Green


Radio Data System, or RDS, is a communications protocol standard for embedding amounts of digital information in conventional FM radio broadcasts. RDS standardizes several types of information transmitted, including time, station identification and program information. Connected to the Emergency Alert System (EAS) through NWR (National Weather Radio) network provided by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association), this feature will automatically activate the radio to inform you of any hazardous weather conditions or warnings including natural, environmental and public safety while the radio is set at the "Alert" mode.The newest and most advanced model from Kaito's Voyager radio family, the KA600 Voyager Pro is designed for both everyday use and emergency preparedness applications.


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#6.C Crane CC Skywave AM, FM, Shortwave, Weather and Airband Portable Travel Radio with Clock and Alarm


The CC Skywave opens up a marvelous world of radio at home or when traveling. It has an intuitive layout so it is easy to use and has fantastic overall performance. Excellent AM reception for such a small portable radio. Strong ability to reduce signal interference. Worldwide Shortwave coverage from 2.3-26.1 MHz. NOAA weather radio with the alert so you can be warned of local weather advisories. Aviation/Airband allows you to listen in on nearby traffic controllers. Excellent sound for such a small speaker. Perfect size for stashing in an interior crevice of any carry-on. Standard features: Clear and pleasing audio for the size, 400 memory presets, direct entry keypad, auto scan, lighted LCD display. Rotary volume knob, Clock with 12/24 hour format, sleep timer, stereo headphone jack, fold out back stand, battery meter, signal meter, lock switch.


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#5.Degen DE1131 4-in-1 Touch Screen Controlled Portable AM/FM/SW Digital Radio, MP3 Player with Built-in 4GB Flash Memory and Micro-SD Card Reader, Voice Recorder & E-book Reader


Introducing the latest innovation from Degen, the DE1131 is the 1st ever radio made with a touch screen control interface in the radio manufacturing industry. There're no more physical buttons to press on the front panel, all functions and controls can be easily accessed by a light tap of your fingertip, better yet, the conventional tuning knob is also replaced by a touch-n-slide control for tuning radio stations up and down, browsing through menus, adjusting volume level and much, much more.


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#4.Sangean WR-22BK AM/FM-RDS/Bluetooth/USB Table-Top Digital Tuning Receiver (Black)


Presenting the Sangean WR-22--the latest evolution of the product that originally changed a perception of home audio. Its bold, detailed sound remains exceptional for a system of its size.

Now, there's even more to like. With Bluetooth wireless technology, simply switch to the Bluetooth source and after initial pairing, start listening to your favorite music wirelessly. It's that simple. Whether you own a smartphone, iPod, tablet, or PC, you can enjoy your music without the constraint of extra cables.


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#3.Tecsun PL880 Portable Digital PLL Dual Conversion AM/FM, Longwave & Shortwave Radio with SSB (Single Side Band) Reception


The Tecsun PL880 is a fantastic multiband radio. The sound quality is excellent and it is easy to operate and maintain. For me, the size is ideal and I take this radio to hunting and fishing camps with me. It gets reception in remote areas when other radios do not. The ability to set preset stations is easy and is a great feature. The rechargeable battery is another nice feature I like. This saves me the hassle of packing in and out regular batteries that will eventually end up in a landfill. The rechargeable battery helps save the environment. The case and SW long wire antenna are great extras to have and enhance the quality of the radio. Overall a fantastic radio that is well worth the price. I will get many years of quality service out of this item.


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#2.DEWALT DCR018 18V/12V/20V MAX Compact Worksite Radio


ABLE TO BE POWERED BY 18V NICD LI-ION, 12V MAX OR 20V MAX DEWALT POWER TOOL BATTERIESAC DC POWER ALLOWING THE FLEXIBILITY TO BE POWERED BY AC POWER CORD OR DEWALT POWER TOOL BATTERIES DEVICE STORAGE BOX PROTECTS DIGITAL AUDIO DEVICES FROM JOBSITE DEBRIS amp;amp; DAMAGE USB POWER PORT ALLOWS DEVICE TO BE CHARGED VIA USB WHEN RADIO IS PLUGGED INTO AC WALL OUTLET 3.5MM AUX INPUT ALLOWS FOR CONNECTION TO CD, MP3, SATELLITE RECEIVERS amp;amp; OTHER DIGITAL AUDIO DEVICES HEAVY-DUTY DESIGN WITH ROLL CAGE INCREASES DURABILITY TO WITHSTAND JOBSITE CONDITIONS DOES NOT INCLUDE CHARGERINCLUDES AUX CABLE


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#1.Jensen JHD910BT Bluetooth Mini Radio JHD910BT


12V DC power. AM/FM electronic tuner (US/Euro). Front and rear panel audio Aux-in for use with iPods, MP3 players and portable CD players. Listen to music your own way through Bluetooth enabled stereo headphones or built-in 15W stereo amplifier. Works with most factory installed speaker/antenna systems or our JENSEN speakers (antenna sold separately). 7-Channel NOAA weather band tuner. Weather Alert automatically switches to WB mode when NOAA warning broadcast is received. 2-wire connection prevents battery drain when a vehicle is not in use. The clock runs up to 30 days when the vehicle battery is disconnected. Corrosion and UV-resistant faceplate. 30 programmable station presets (18FM, 12AM). Built-in job site works timer. Electronic seek up/down/volume/bass/treble/balance. 12/24 hour clock. Backlit controls with selectable amber or green illumination colors. Daylight readable display with wide viewing angle. One-touch audio mute. Dimensions: 53/16" W x 33/8" H x 17/8" D.


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