Real radio :-)

Gerald Wolczanski jerrywlinux at
Sun Dec 5 19:33:34 CST 2010

I don't know about "real radio" but a few months ago, I cobbled together
some power supplies and put my "Torn.E.b." TRF regenerative receiver on
the air.  The nameplate on my says 1943.  I've been chasing beacons on
the longwave band.


I have a 22kW AM station 3km from my QTH and the little Torn doesn't
know it exists.  My new Palstar R30A, with a "modern" design (and
reasonable dynamic range) is brought to its knees by that AM station.  A
wavetrap is the only fix.  Without it the band is a buzz with IMD
products and de-sensing.

Aside from the lack of single signal reception on CW, the little Torn
holds its own.  I often toggle back and forth between the two (the R30A
also has a very steep skirted Collins filter and a W3NQN audio filter)
and I can almost always hear signals just as well on the regenerative

The Torn's lack of AGC, and good fidelity and dynamic range in the audio
stages, also makes for a nice listening experience...up to a point when
the high fidelity lightning crashes begin to hurt the ears!  Many modern
radios (my R30A included) have too much AGC.  The result is a muffled
output and weak signals alongside strong signals are lost in the gain
turn-down.  That may be the best part about good direct conversion
receivers - the ability to listen to a weak signal in the presence of a
strong signal.

I got my Torn.E.b. at a hamfest for $5 - the guy did not know what it
was.  I surely did, having read an old article, years before, in CQ
magazine about this old receiver that was so good (and spurious free)
that it was used as a lab instrument.  Now it's my Beacon instrument.
Jerry W

On Sun, 2010-12-05 at 16:38 -0500, Andre Kesteloot wrote:
> 73
> André N4ICK
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