Eton Traveler III Grundig Edition

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WA8ZTZ

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Purchased this radio about a year ago and played around with it on LW. It was basically deaf to all but the stronger local NDBs. A 50' wire antenna inductively coupled to the radio through a homebrew antenna tuner woke the radio up somewhat but still no DX machine on LW. Put the radio away and never did much more with it.

Fast forward to early this morning... got the Traveller III out and tuned around on the AM broadcast band.
What a pleasant surprise. This little radio works great on AM BCB. It seems very sensitive and selective. Heard 5000 watt WMT 600 in Cedar Rapids Iowa, a new one for me as that freq is usually dominated by the more local WSNL in Flint MI. Tuning up the band, WSB 750 Atlanta came in loud and clear with no interference from local 50 kw flamethrower WJR Detroit on adjacent channel 760. Many portables have selectivity issues with strong adjacent stations but not this one. Tried tuning in various weak signals and using my CCrane TCA to enhance reception but in most cases it overloaded the Traveler III. This indicates to me that the Traveler III has plenty of built-in sensitivity. The best thing was... NO SOFT MUTING. :) Soft Muting acts as sort of an anti-AGC and is ruin to the AM DXer. This radio does not have it. No muting between stations, you can hear the soft hiss of atmospheric noise between stations with, hopefully, a weak signal to try to dig out of there. Took the rear cover off to inspect what is used for an antenna. It is a ferrite rod about 1/4" dia. by 3" long, a fairly decent sized antenna for a pocket portable. Eton did everything right with this radio as far as AM BCB is concerned.
 

ka3jjz

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Keep in mind that LW on portables, at least in North American models, is very much an afterthought. I doubt that any NA models would perform well there, simply because,unlike Europe and parts of Asia, there is no NA broadcasting there.

Mike
 

WA8ZTZ

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Keep in mind that LW on portables, at least in North American models, is very much an afterthought. I doubt that any NA models would perform well there, simply because,unlike Europe and parts of Asia, there is no NA broadcasting there.

Mike
When looking around for a LW portable none of the sensitivity specs were very impressive.

Fortunately, this radio makes up for the lackluster LW performance with excellent AM reception.
 

Boombox

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If you wound a LW tuned loop you may have more luck on LW.

Most of the new Grundigs & Etons have SiLabs DSP IF chips in them, and if they switch off the muting, they're quite good.

My Grundig G2, has no muting, and tight AGC -- I'm certain it has a similar chipset to your radio. My G2 reduces splash almost better than every analog IF chip / ceramic filter radio I have. A bit wider bandwidth than my PR-D5, but still an impressive MW performer once you set a loop next to it to overcome the 60mm internal loopstick. I always use an external loop when I DX the MW with it.

ON SW it's great off the whip. You may want to try the Traveller III on SW, if it has it. You may be pleasantly surprised.

PS, if you want to DX longwave with a portable, the Sangean 909X is probably very good. My DX-398 (a RS badged Sangean 909) is very good on Longwave, even without an external antenna.
 

WA8ZTZ

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Boombox...

tnx for the info, have not tried out thr Traveler III on SW or FM yet. It has RDS on FM, will be interesting to see how that performs.

Did try a wire antenna with a homebrew tuner designed for LW coupled to the Traveler III and it did help somewhat.
 

WA8ZTZ

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Tried the AN200 external loop next to the Traveler III this evening and it gave good results. It allowed me to hear several weak stations that otherwise would have been missed. It did not overwhelm the receiver the way the CCrane TCA often did. The TCA worked great with some of my other portables but easily overloads the Traveler III.
 

Boombox

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If the radio is similar to the way the G2 operates, it probably has very tight AGC. I've found that with the G2 (and to a certain extent, the PR-D5, which also has a SiLabs DSP 'tune to the antenna' chip in it) you have to listen for the peak in programming, instead of a peak in volume, when tuning an external loop on MW.

Most of my analog IF chipped radios you'll hear a peak in volume when tuning the loop to a target frequency. With the DSP chipped radios it's a different animal altogether.

The selectivity of these DSP chipped radios is very good. Have fun DXing with the Traveler III.

And if you encounter local MW interference on SW, just shorten the whip until it's gone. If it's like my G2, you'll still be able to hear the target SW station. I've been able to hear Asian SW stations on 49 meters sometimes with the whip as short as 9-10 inches or so.
 
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