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September, 2010:

Pirate Radio: Did I blog too soon?

I received an email today from the BBC suggesting that, on their initial investigation, the radio station causing the interference to Radio 4 is potentially a pirate radio station.

The email goes on to say it might take a while before the station is eventually closed down but it does indicate they they expect to close it down.

I’m impressed, something appears to be happening. Maybe I’ll be able to go back to FM in the bathroom and use the very impressive Squeezebox Radio somewhere else.

Is pirate radio helping DAB?

BBC Radio 4 FM on a portable radio around here is spoilt by breakthrough from a pirate which I think is called Riddim Radio. RR appears to be spilling out everywhere and it sounds somewhat overmodulated.  I complained by the BBC website expecting an email or a call in response but basically nothing than the standard reply stating I might not get a reply.

I know this is a bit conspiracy theory like, but pirate radio must be pushing more people to DAB.  So it makes sense that the BBC or whoever is now responsible  – is it OFCOM? – don’t bother to shut down the pirates.

Squeezebox Radio

Squeezebox Radio - internet radio definitely not DAB

Didn’t work with me; I bought a internet radio, a lovely Squeezebox Radio, which was installed in minutes. It  gives me access to Radio 4 via iPlayer at a decent bit rate – 128kbps AAC –  access to Radio Paradise and other great internet radio stations and all my stored music.

It sounds great, a nice tone as my parent used to say and is easy to use.  The one downside is the crazily high priced battery pack with remote control pack available as an accessory.  However I’ve found a website with advice on how to make one so I’ll do that if I ever get some spare time.

Ticket rip-off?

I’ve just received my tickets to see The Gaslight Anthem at Southampton Guildhall.  Three good value tickets at £16.50 standing, turn out to be not so good value after the £8.25 service charge and the £3.25 processing fee has been added. How is it acceptable for the extra costs, just to buy three tickets to be over 23%? I’m not sure if the extra 23% goes to Southampton Guildhall, Live Nation or Ticketmaster but whichever, they should be embarrassed by the lack of transparency and the rip-off nature of the style of advertising.

Anyone got any idea which company actually gets all these ‘fees’.

Naim adds to Ovator range with S-400

16 September 2010. Top Audio Show – Milan. Naim today launched the Ovator S-400 loudspeaker the smaller sibling to the first in the Ovator series, the S-600. The opportunity and the timing were perfect said Paul Stephenson Naim’s managing director. “Milano’s reputation as the style capital of Europe gives us an ideal opportunity to show that good industrial design can combine form-follows-function engineering with a great looking and stylish loudspeaker.”

The design brief of the S-400 was simple: To take all the elements of the S-600 loudspeaker and to produce a smaller model more suited to smaller rooms but which would not compromise the essential musical communication of the S-600.

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Chord Company adds Ethernet to Award Winning SuperShield

The Chord Company has added Ethernet capability plus an optimised audio return connection to its multi-award winning SuperShield HDMI cable. It will come as no surprise that the all new cable is now called: the Chord SuperShield High Speed HDMI cable with Ethernet.

Chord SuperShield High Speed HDMI cable with Ethernet is available in 1, 2 and 3-metre lengths.

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ROCKbox and the iPod

iTunes works well enough for my iPhone where the music I want doesn’t change that often, but something that allowed music loading with simple drag and drop would be ideal.  Throw in playback of FLAC and even some hi-res music and the iPod looks really flexible.

I now have my old iPod ‘Classic’ 60GB Photo running ROCKbox.  Even with the choice of loads of themes it’s not as pretty as running the standard iPod software.  However, it works, it sounds good and it’s truly convenient.

ROCKbox cabbie enhanced themeI would be very interested in learning of any competitors to ROCKbox.  Are there any?