As a child I was a keen listener to short-wave radio.
I’d hazard a guess there’s a lot of people, these days, who have no idea what short-wave radio is.
But as a child it was something almost magical which allowed me to connect with the rest of the world, thanks to a reasonably large antenna my dad helped set up.
My favourite station was Radio Nederlands in Hilversum, which I was lucky enough to visit a couple of years ago. Their programming was accessible, in English, but also slightly exotic for a young lad from country New South Wales.
I also listened to Radio Moscow and Radio Peking (as they called it then) as they both had strong transmitters which were, presumably targetted at South East Asia, but which also boomed in to Australia.
This childhood interest in radio, of course, led to a later career.
It’s been years since I’ve listened to short wave, now that streaming has well and truly overtaken it.
But firing up the computer and setting up some kind of connection to my sound-system has always seemed to me like one step too many. I’ve wanted something that was a little more “home entertainment centre” for a while. Something with the wifi built in, and which didn’t require firing up the ‘puter.
So today, I bought an “internet radio”.
I’ve been researching them for a while, but they’ve always been a little too expensive or a little too geeky to bother with until recently.
As I weighed up my various options, I’d pretty much settled on a product from Logitech. Unfortunately none of the stores which claimed to have it had any in stock.
Never mind, I thought, because the nice man at JB Hi-Fi had shown me another product.
It was about the right price – I didn’t want to spend a fortune on something which would stream most items at about 128k – and it was available. It’s a DGTEC DG-KW1005IR. Don’t bother googling it, as you won’t find much on the net about it. They’re selling them currently at JB Hi-Fi.
It was easy to set up, sounds pretty good, and I was happy with it, except for one aspect: the website interface which allows you to register your radio, search for stations, and set up a bunch of shortcuts and favourites. You can do it on the radio, but it’s much easier via the site.
On page 23 of their manual, currently on their website, the process about how to “manage your stations” describes going to a website, registering the access code.
Unfortunately when I entered my access code , I got this answer…. “
The Access code you entered was not found. Please make sure that you have entered it correctly.
Your manual may be unclear. The steps to register are:
From the radio
1. From the Main Menu select ‘Internet radio’,
2. Select ‘Station list’,
3. Select the ‘Help’ directory
4. Select ‘Get access code’ item
5. Write down the access code – it is 7 digits.
6. Visit the site http://www.wifiradio-frontier.com/ to register
7. Click on the ‘New Member’ link, below the login section
8. Enter in the access code and a username and password to setup your login.
As I did everything correctly, and tried it several times, I rang their customer support centre today for some assistance.
After some time searching for an answer to my question, the man who answered told me the product was 4 years old and no longer supported.
He also told me he spoke to their development team and then told me “oh that’s never worked” (meaning the website interface).
Early this evening, I wrote the company a “please explain” note.
Not to be deterred I tried a few more times with the same code.
And then I did a complete power down reboot. And guess what? I got a new code and it worked.
And so, now, I’m having a lovely Friday evening listening to Swedish radio. This is going to be an experiment in bandwidth, though, for sure.