The last great "REAL RADIOS" before the shift to SDR technology.

Omega-TI

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What in YOUR OPINION were the last great communications receivers before the switch to computer controlled or SDR technology? Was it something like the JRC NRD-535D or something else? Or does the 535 even qualify?

535.jpg
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Those older radios like JRC 535D and ICOM IC-R9000 had RF band preselectors to eliminate IF spurious Image responses and to prevent out of band overload. Nearly zero modern (cheap) SDR radios being offered have any sort of RF preselector and suffer problems of "aliasing" and out of band RF overload.
 

majoco

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How about my predecessor - an NRD 515? Pretty ancient, I know, but still goes like a charm. Octave wide bandpass filters right at the antenna input, very sensitive, rock solid stability against WWVH and great audio, Unfortunately the memory unit has packed a big sad after the previous owner (Japan Air Line office at Auckland airport judging by the stickers on it and the fact it was tuned to 8843kHz, the old AM SP frequency and the dust on the knobs!) left the batteries in which then leaked all over the board which took out a lot of plated-through holes on the PC board and ate the legs of the RAM chips which are now unobtainable. The memory unit on EPay is now about what I paid for the whole lot (including the right speaker) about 2005! Most of the radio IC's are still available TTL and I am slowly building up a stock of spares hoping that Murphy doesn't strike! My friend Mike (Invergordon) has now got one and he's amazed too!
DSC_3924 sml.jpg
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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In my opinion there was a sweet spot in technology in the 1980-90's where knowledgeable receiver designers suddenly had a lot of great hardware to design with. The later generations were not so much.
 

SatHunter

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Jul 23, 2021
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Those older radios like JRC 535D and ICOM IC-R9000 had RF band preselectors to eliminate IF spurious Image responses and to prevent out of band overload. Nearly zero modern (cheap) SDR radios being offered have any sort of RF preselector and suffer problems of "aliasing" and out of band RF overload.
My experience with SDR is a lot of frustration with all kinds of noise issues. I love the older radios and saw a very nice IC-R9000 in auction this week. I got into the bidding early at around $300. In the final hours the bids shot up over $900. I got one last bid in at $955. Within the last minute there was a bidding war and at the final bell it sold for almost $2000. They are still a highly valued receiver despite its age and the known problems like overheating and the CRT problems. The performance of the 9000 was unmatched and I always wanted one in my collection. It hurt me to let it go but it's difficult to spend 2 grand while we're in the middle of a recession.
 
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