Digital Audio World

Musings and information on podcasting, digital audio, online streaming audio and home studio recording from Tim 'Gonzo' Gordon of

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

FMQB: the HD radio arrives!
Back in the early 80s a radio engineer told me that digital radio - which was on the horizon (in fact, he confided, the technology was already here!), would make the average AM station sound ten times better than today's FM stations.

I didn't hold my breath. Although I thought it cool that the technology was there. We daydreamed about going throughout the country and buying up a bunch of AM radio stations on the cheap so that when the switch came, we could make a ton of money. But since we had no money to invest, that was just a wispy dream.

Fast forward to 2006. You can now buy an HD radio. Many stations are broadcasting in HD with a 'second channel' (not sure what that's supposed to be and I'm too bored or busy to look it up), and if you can get the signal, it supposedly sounds great.

That's when I ran across this article in FMQB from a guy who'd actually bought one of the HD radios and took it home to test it out.

Apparently, the technology - or at least the execution of it as described by Paul Marszalek - is not ready for prime time, as he puts it.

Only the 'early adopters' will jump on this, and then only if the word of mouth is good.

So far, it's missing a few voices in the chorus.