Radio Reception In The Shop

DanF

Well-Known Member
#1
I suspect that many of us live a solitary life in the shop, and I enjoy listening to several inspirational programs throughout the day while I am working.
I have noticed that as I have added more equipment and circuits, my radio signal has diminished to the point of not being able to bring in the stations I listen to.
Any suggestions on improving reception?
Thanks,
 

C Craft

Well-Known Member
#2
In my shop, I have the antenna extended on my radio.

I was having the same problem so tied a loop of copper wire to it, at the tip and back to the base of the antenna! Not sure, why it works but, it works!! It is probably some what like the problem of rabbit ears on the old TV. Wow I just dated myself!

I will say this before I did that I could not keep any station locked in. I would finish doing something noisy and instead of hearing my music I would here the static garbles drift when it is on the station and not on the station!!
 

John Wilson

Well-Known Member
#3
Everything with a motor is a radio transmitter. VFDs are serial offenders, LOL.

An external antenna is probably your solution unless you want to run around rewiring everything with shielded cable, installing filters and chokes, and tying it all to one common ground point.
 
#5
Radio reception was so non-existent in my shop that I just gave up and connected my lab computer to my stereo system and stream my radio listening over the internet instead. I also have a very large collection of music mp3's that I can play this way as well. But with each solution comes new problem, mp3 players supposedly offer a random shuffle feature but no matter how you configure it, you end up listening to the same songs again and again- which sort of takes us back to one of the major pitfalls of radio.
 

J. Doyle

Dealer - Purveyor
#6
I also have an mp3 player with around 500 songs. My shuffle feature works pretty good but I sometimes have the same issue as Kevin mentioned.......you occasionally hear the same few songs over and over.
 

DanF

Well-Known Member
#7
Thanks for all the ideas/suggestions guys, I'll have to think about the external antenna for the radio idea.
MP3? I'll start researching that.
Again, thanks for the input, it is appreciated.
 

Drew Riley

Well-Known Member
#9
Part of it may depend on the type/quality of radio you're trying to listen to. As others have said, if it's plugged into an outlet that's on the same circuit (or possibly even the same side of the breaker panel) as a VFD, you'll likely get some interference. If there's an external antenna hook up on your receiver, you can get a large coil of wire and make your own. Sometimes, just running a wire from the antenna to a grounded outlet screw (or I sometimes just stick it right into the ground hole) will dramatically increase reception.

Lately, I just pick a Pandora station, a Podcast, or an Audio book and stream it on my phone via WiFi. A lot of local radio stations also have their own apps (or can be played through other radio apps like "Tune In"), and can be streamed live. During baseball season, I often listen to the Cubs via a station that's 3 hours from Chicago, even though I'm only 45 minutes from Chicago, because they stream the feed, where the app for the actual radio station does not, for some reason.
 

Drew Riley

Well-Known Member
#11

Here's a vid I made on one of the methods I use to listen to the radio, etc... in the shop. Basically I took some 3m radio earmuffs and added a bluetooth adapter to stream directly from my phone without the mess of cables and whatnot. You can find the adapters for about $15 (or less?) and I've seen shooting earmuffs with AUX inputs for less than $20, though if you get the headphones with the radio built in, I think they're about $40-45 now days.

Now, I believe you can get JUST the earmuffs with bluetooth already built in for about $40, but I like having the adapter, as mentioned in the vid. (They also make a built in bluetooth with radio, but it's even more expensive, IIRC).

Anyway... just some options.
 

John Wilson

Well-Known Member
#12
Same here. I either listen to saved music or youtube from my phone via a bluetooth speaker. I started doing that because I can never hear the phone ring. This way if I get a call I hear the music stop and the phone ringer takes over.
 

Drew Riley

Well-Known Member
#13
Same here. I either listen to saved music or youtube from my phone via a bluetooth speaker. I started doing that because I can never hear the phone ring. This way if I get a call I hear the music stop and the phone ringer takes over.
That's true on many apps for the ringer, but unfortunately not always for text messages. Always nice to finish a podcast or audiobook, only to look down and see you've missed 17 text messages from the wife:

10:30a text from Wife: I heard a loud noise! What was that!?
10:31a text from Wife: Did you blow something up in the garage again?
10:33a text from Wife: Did your homemade forge finally explode?!
11:27a text from Wife: Are you still alive?
11:43a text from Wife: Hellllooooo????
11:51a text from Wife: I'm making lunch, are you hungry?
12:13p text from Wife: Why aren't you answering meeeeee?
1:07p text from Wife: OH MY G.... ARE YOU DEAD?!!!
1:14p text from Wife: I made you a sandwich over an hour ago.
1:14p text from Wife: The kids ate it
1:28p test from Wife: Seriously, when are you coming in??
 

John Wilson

Well-Known Member
#14
That's true on many apps for the ringer, but unfortunately not always for text messages. Always nice to finish a podcast or audiobook, only to look down and see you've missed 17 text messages from the wife:

10:30a text from Wife: I heard a loud noise! What was that!?
10:31a text from Wife: Did you blow something up in the garage again?
10:33a text from Wife: Did your homemade forge finally explode?!
11:27a text from Wife: Are you still alive?
11:43a text from Wife: Hellllooooo????
11:51a text from Wife: I'm making lunch, are you hungry?
12:13p text from Wife: Why aren't you answering meeeeee?
1:07p text from Wife: OH MY G.... ARE YOU DEAD?!!!
1:14p text from Wife: I made you a sandwich over an hour ago.
1:14p text from Wife: The kids ate it
1:28p test from Wife: Seriously, when are you coming in??

Holy smokes- I think we are living the same life!
 
#15
That's true on many apps for the ringer, but unfortunately not always for text messages. Always nice to finish a podcast or audiobook, only to look down and see you've missed 17 text messages from the wife:

10:30a text from Wife: I heard a loud noise! What was that!?
10:31a text from Wife: Did you blow something up in the garage again?
10:33a text from Wife: Did your homemade forge finally explode?!
11:27a text from Wife: Are you still alive?
11:43a text from Wife: Hellllooooo????
11:51a text from Wife: I'm making lunch, are you hungry?
12:13p text from Wife: Why aren't you answering meeeeee?
1:07p text from Wife: OH MY G.... ARE YOU DEAD?!!!
1:14p text from Wife: I made you a sandwich over an hour ago.
1:14p text from Wife: The kids ate it
1:28p test from Wife: Seriously, when are you coming in??
Bwaaaahahahahahaha, that is funny.
 

GeneK

KNIFE MAKER
#17
I put a wifi extender in the shop and use an Echo Show to listen to music, podcasts or tv shows through playstation vue. I can also intercom to the house with it.
 

Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
#19
That's true on many apps for the ringer, but unfortunately not always for text messages. Always nice to finish a podcast or audiobook, only to look down and see you've missed 17 text messages from the wife:

10:30a text from Wife: I heard a loud noise! What was that!?
10:31a text from Wife: Did you blow something up in the garage again?
10:33a text from Wife: Did your homemade forge finally explode?!
11:27a text from Wife: Are you still alive?
11:43a text from Wife: Hellllooooo????
11:51a text from Wife: I'm making lunch, are you hungry?
12:13p text from Wife: Why aren't you answering meeeeee?
1:07p text from Wife: OH MY G.... ARE YOU DEAD?!!!
1:14p text from Wife: I made you a sandwich over an hour ago.
1:14p text from Wife: The kids ate it
1:28p test from Wife: Seriously, when are you coming in??
That's hilarious :D and so true
 

JeremyBartlett

Well-Known Member
#20
I'm a little high tech compared to most, but I have an Amazon Echo and a subscription to prime music....All I do is say "Alexa, play classic rock" and away she goes :)
 
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