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Discussion Starter #41
^^^^ Interesting Link... Thanks... I didn't know about the Markham multicultural station at 105.9MHz.

However, they transposed CIHR into CHIR... Oooops... :)

So, tentatively:

CING-FM 95.3MHz Hamilton HD1-2
CIHR-FM 104.7MHz Woodstock HD1
CFMS 105.9MHz Markham HD1
CJSA 101.3MHz Toronto. HD1-4

I attempted to verify the CFMS callsign on their web site but their advertising covered over most of their mailing info.... how bizarre.... However, I just checked Wikipedia and it's listed there, so the CFMS callsign appears to be correct.

Cameron
 

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It's interesting to be able to do an A-B comparison between an AM signal and an FM signal with the same source material from the same broadcaster. What a difference!!
 

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Discussion Starter #43
That same difference existed when CBC switched from 740AM to 99.1FM.

And it also holds true comparing 640AM and 95.3MHz HD2.

Cameron
 

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If there is room on the FM dial, I'm all in favour of AM stations simulcasting there, or in the case of HD Radio occupying an FM sub-channel.

Having said that, it is still good to have AM available when travelling in rural areas where the FM signals just don't carry. That doesn't apply to 740AM in Toronto, of course! ;)
 

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Right on, Corus! Don't stop with just that one city. Based on the list of stations on their web site: http://www.corusent.com/about/brand-listing/radio/ I would hope to see a rollout like the following:

Vancouver: Rock 101FM could host CKNW News-Talk AM980, while CFOX 99.3 could host AM730 Traffic on subchannels

Calgary: News-Talk 770 could be a subchannel on one of Corus's three FM stations there

Edmonton: 630 CHED and i880 News-Talk could go on Fresh Radio 92.5's stream

Winnipeg: 680 CJOB News-Talk could go on either of Corus's two FM stations there

Ontario: too many potential Corus station mixes to list!

BTW Corus didn't tell a fib... they are the first multi-market operator to launch HD Radio, but not the first operator to launch it.
 

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Discussion Starter #47
As has been mentioned in the IBOC thread, the hardest stations to implement HD Radio on are those that are multi-coupled through complex combining networks into single broadband antennas. Sites like the CN Tower and the other main one in Toronto (I can't think of it's exact name at the moment) come to mind.

There is a heavy cost associated with the retuning of the combining networks as well as transmitter acquisition and replacement. Corus I'm sure would do a cost vs. analysis for those installations.

Cameron
 

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CFOX 99.3 Vancouver

The CFOX HD shouldn't take long to get up and broadcasting. Once they finished tinkering the CFMI HD. They are using very recent Nautel transmitters for the stations.
 

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CFMI HD-2 Audio Level

My first thought on scanning it in is that the audio on the CKNW HD-2 feed is lower in volume than the Rock 101 HD-1 feed. I hope matching those levels is part of the tweaking they'll be doing. Nice to be getting it! :)

This means many Lower Mainland classic rock fans will have the HD Radio choice of both Rock 101 and KISM 92.9 Bellingham.
 

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I drove from North Delta to Ladner and back today and switched back-and-forth between CHFI's HD-1 and HD-2 streams all the way - completely solid and stable, but that's to be expected over all that flat farmland. I never noticed HD-2 (CKNW) cutting out, but then again they are still tweaking everything. It will be interesting to find out how those data streams do in hilly areas in a moving vehicle. In Seattle's hilly areas my Kenwood HD Radio tuner tends to drop back to analogue or return to digital as needed with no noticeable delay, and the display tells when a digital lock is back. It will be like that in some parts of the Lower Mainland, I expect. Also the RDS text info from the analogue signal is no match for the greater info text given in the digital streams, as I expected based on U.S. stations already using HD Radio.
 

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Discussion Starter #54
If a station has moderate to severe multipath interference, that will cause the HD component of the broadcast signal to drop out, especially if the multipath is severe.

Also, note that the HD signal on many stations is 1% of the primary FM carrier, with some stations running 4 or 6%. 10% is the maximum, and in the U.S., requires additional authorization. I can't speak for Canada. If a given station has no adjacent stations either side of it then 10% could be doable.

Cameron
 

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CFMI HD-2 dropouts confirmed

wahzoo said:
the nw hd2 cuts out every once in awhile
Confirmed. I took a spin out to Tsawwassen today and left it on CKNW HD-2 all the way. It cut out a handful of times for about 1 second each time, seemingly randomly.

Oddly at exactly 13:30 and 14:30 the dropout was about 3 seconds. I could not tell if there had been a dropout at 14:00 or 15:00 since programming was changing too at those times. The dropout at 13:30 included one short tone sounding similar to a vehicle door-ajar dinger.
 

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Discussion Starter #56
^^^^ It would be fascinating to watch a spectrum analyzer while listening to an HD radio during these dropouts. That would determine if it's a transmission fault or errors in the data stream prior to transmission.

Cameron
 

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I'm pretty sure the problem is upstream data because the display on my Kenwood showed no loss of digital lock during those audio dropouts. I should have clarified that. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #58
With my insignia palm sized radio I'm getting dropouts of the complete data stream and on HD1 it drops to analogue and back to HD again every 3-5 minutes, and that's with the CHCH tower in plain view.

On the Grundig tuned to 95.5MHz I don't notice any noticeable signal loss of the digital racket... and this is with 95.3 "Fresh FM". On HD2 when the data drops, everything goes silent, as expected, then it comes back...

If I put the radio in a multipath spot in the apartment, the FM gets really ratty and the HD becomes quite unstable, so it appears there are possibly multiple issues at play here.

Cameron
 

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Discussion Starter #59
Very careful listening of the digital racket brought this observation: It changes to a muffled "staccato" or muffled "machine gun" type sound buried in the noise, then back to a "white noise" sound, then changes to a different tone of "staccato" type sound... and these correlate with drops in the HD decoding... This problem I've not heard before...

This effect can be heard on both the Insignia palm sized HD radio as well as the Grundig Traveler II G8. 95.3MHz Fresh FM. Tune either radio to 95.5MHz or 95.1MHz to hear this effect. Good headphones help a lot. When HD1 drops to analogue, I'm getting a clean multipath free feed, so multipath isn't in play with this problem.

A secondary observation: The HD sounds a lot crisper and cleaner on both the HD1 and HD2 streams. An increase of bitrate maybe? And if so, shouldn't the TX be able to handle that?

That's my wild guess... along with observations...

Cameron
 

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Too bad we don't have HD stations in Calgary yet. Just did a scan on my Grundig and didn't hear any digital racket on adjacent stations.

Likely candidates in the future are Q107 and Country 105 as they are Corus stations
 
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