Monday, October 8, 2012

DX musings

With the final analogue shutdowns looming, it made me think back on how my dxing all started.

It would have been around the mid 1980's while I was in late primary school.  For the TV I had a portable AWA brand, solid state black and white set. Connected to that was a simple 4 element VHF/FM antenna mounted to the gutter. A meager set up, that yielded plenty of results:

TVQ-0 Brisbane
DDQ-0 Toowoomba
RVN-2 Wagga*
NBN-3 Newcastle**
AMV-4 Albury*
RTS-5A Riverland
NTD-8 Darwin
2, 7, 9, 10 Adelaide

I'm sure there are others I had forgotten.  I think at some stage over those years, I had received an ABC on virtually all VHF channels.  Can't remember if I had BTV-6 Ballarat and SES -8 Mt. Gambier when living in Melrose (where I grew up), but both were regular tropo catches in Port Pirie, often clear as.

  * Received early before local ABNS-1 and GTS-4 signed on for the day.
** When receiving NBN, I also was getting FM from Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong.

Channel 0 was espcially strong, enabling clear reception using just the TV's attached telescopic antenna.  Even then the signal was so strong, it would be distorted.


  1. I've just written a post lamenting the good old days of regional television, there's plenty of it on YouTube.

    My first Sporadic E reception was RTQ-0 circa 1994 but didn't realise it at the time. I assumed it was Wollongong at the time as it was carrying the cricket (which we could not see in Sydney because of the lockout rule). I would often see DX on Channel 0 from New Zealand and RTQ even though I didn't have a rotary tuner, for some reason it was pre programmed.

    I did manage to receive GTS4 audio via Es (100.75) before it shut off, I think I had a whiff of ABRS3 Loxton as well.

    Good to see you're getting back into blogging again.

    1. Wow NTD8 Darwin? Was this 100% confirmed? To my knowledge, nobody has ever had Channel 8 via E-skip in Australia, though Channel 7 has been done, briefly. SES8 (or perhaps GLV8 Latrobe Valley) via tropo would be more likely imo. Darwin-Adelaide tropo is also very unlikely, at least from my perusal of the Hepburn maps.

      Not saying you're deliberately fabricating this stuff, just giving my opinion.

  2. I recall GLV back then were "TV8" if I'm not mistaken. I remember the logo and the channel 8 I had was definitely an "8" logo like NTD had. Of course, I don't have any stills or video from then, it was around the mid to late 80's and back then didn't really think to capture anything.

  3. Just realised that the distance between Darwin and Adelaide is over 2700 km, which would make it double hop Es. If it was indeed NTD8, it would be one hell of a catch. The Wikipedia article on TV DX claims that a Venezuelan channel 9 was received in the US at over 3000 km, so I guess it's possible though extremely rare.