I hear of channels at, for instance, 4625kHz and I want to check them out but the only radio I have is the one in my car which only goes up to 1710kHz. What kind of radio do I need to listen to channels above that? P.S. I know nothing about HAM radio; I just wanted advice from hams. Thank you.


The type of radio you are looking for is a shortwave receiver. The most common types are portable battery-powered radios, looking much like a portable FM radio but with more controls.

Besides the additional frequency range, another feature to look for is support for single sideband (SSB) reception, in addition to the familiar AM and FM modes. Nearly all shortwave broadcasting stations are AM, but if you are interested in other signals such as amateurs' transmissions, you will definitely want SSB capability.

Also note that at these low frequencies, large antennas are useful. Reception can often be improved by stringing a simple wire in the air and connecting one end to the antenna jack, if any, or the end of the stock telescoping antenna.

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  • $\begingroup$ I'm new to this site. Hope I'm commenting in the correct place. $\endgroup$ – marcus marcus Aug 7 '14 at 5:35
  • $\begingroup$ I went to a Radio Shack and checked out a shortwave receiver. It only went up to 1800 kHz. Why is that? $\endgroup$ – marcus marcus Aug 7 '14 at 5:35
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ That sounds like a medium wave receiver. A shortwave receiver will cover many bands, up to around 26MHz $\endgroup$ – Scott Earle Aug 7 '14 at 6:59
  • $\begingroup$ Err, Mr. Scott and Kevin. $\endgroup$ – marcus marcus Aug 8 '14 at 4:03

This radio : http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2634485

Costs $40 or so, and covers the following frequencies:

  • "FM Band" 87.5-108.1MHz
  • Medium Wave ("AM band") 520-1710kHz
  • Shortwave 2.3-26.1 MHz (these are the shortwave bands you are interested in)

Hope this helps.

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