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DAB to FM radio converter

  (+4, -1)
(+4, -1)
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Soon everyone in the UK will be forced to throw away their FM radios as radio broadcasting moves to digital radio, which has the selling points of having poorer sound quality, forcing a 1-second delay on everything broadcast (so the time signal will be wrong) and being less environmentally friendly (DAB sets use much more power).

To save 100m radios being thrown away, this idea is for a small, cheap box which can receive a DAB radio station and rebroadcast it on FM, so that all the radios in your house can receive it and you don't have to throw all your radios away.
hippo, May 29 2010


       Pretty good idea if you want to make a million billion dollars.
rcarty, May 29 2010

       [+] Some phones have built-in FM transmitters, but because the UK is just about alone in adopting DAB, no phone I've seen has a DAB receiver.   

       (Pops up stairs to see if 30-odd year old Josty FM transmitter is still working)
AbsintheWithoutLeave, May 29 2010

       There are lots of low-power FM stereo transmitters on the market; just plug one into the earphone socket of a DAB radio.   

       Not Baked as an integrated unit, but certainly possible to assemble from widely available modules, with almost no technical skill required.
8th of 7, May 29 2010

       As it turns out I'm qualified to work in [hippo]'s factory.
rcarty, May 29 2010

       DAB is crap.... weak, wishy washy signals that don't synch with the speaking clock. I'll never throw out my 45 year old Bush, that only has Long, and Medium wave on it. I see zero use for DAB and I will never use it, in the same way as I have never used, and never will use the stupid metric system - a series of devilish units, based on the number of legs found on an elongated crawling insect type; devised by idiots for use by imbeciles.   

       I call DAB Metric Radio, and treat it accordingly. It's un-British. Let it be deployed in the colonies where they know no better.
xenzag, May 29 2010

       // devised by idiots //   

       the french ...   

       // for use by imbeciles //   

       Also the french.
8th of 7, May 29 2010

       // based on the number of legs found on an elongated crawling insect type//
I've never thought of my fingers as the legs on any kind of crawilng insect.
Maybe you're thinking of some other arthropod?
AbsintheWithoutLeave, May 29 2010

       Your objection to DAB may be valid (I don't know), but your solution doesn't stack up...   

       You cite the power usage of DAB radios but your solution relies on at least 1 DAB radio plus your new box being on, aside from any of the FM radios you're listening on.   

       You cite a 1 second delay but your solution maintains this delay (and may even introduce a further delay of its own in the transformation and retransmission).   

       There's another flaw too. If I use your box and my DAB radio and re-sender are in the kitchen, but I want to listen to the FM in my study, I'll need to get off my a**e and go to the kitchen to change the station.   

       Not for me.
Tulaine, May 29 2010

       Yes halfbaked, but his idea appeals to the conservative change resistance of many people, who perhaps only listen to BBC radio 1 (I assume BBC has a radio 1 like CBC).
rcarty, May 30 2010

       There's a BBC Radio 1 ?   

       We know about Radio 3 and Radio 4 ...
8th of 7, May 30 2010

       Is this genius?   

       I think it might be the best example of 'thinking outside the box' since... well, the last one.   

       I'm no expert, but I'm assuming there is no reason why you couldn't implement this.   

       It's a bit like Radio Caroline etc. Correct me if I'm wrong, but despite the advancing technology, someone will always be able to broadcast an FM signal.   

       [Tulaine] - Surely the use of 1 DAB unit (as a transmitter) is better than the use of thousands/millions as receivers, as opposed to making thousands/millions of FM radios redundant'? With regard to the delay - who cares, if it means we don't have to scrap all those FM radios? I think it's a small price to pay.   

       All in all, I think this is a bloody good idea. Unless someone can point out why it isn't, of course.
jtp, May 31 2010

       The FM stations aren't scheduled for involuntary termination though, are they?
BunsenHoneydew, May 31 2010

       I thought it was all a clever wheeze, to use some of the FM bandwidth to broadcast the digital stuff, and make loads of money auctioning off the spare spectrum for ridiculous inflated prices.
pocmloc, May 31 2010

       //(DAB sets use much more power)// Well no.   

       Distributing DAB signals to legacy systems, yes. Distributing DAB over *any* other transmission protocol, no.   

       Pumping an FM signal over a radial distance and distributing a digital signal within a "cell" network have distinctive energy profiles. And FM definitely loses on this one. It does, however take more energy to distribute over a cell, or several cells, but there is close to zero waste into the eather...
4whom, May 31 2010

       // //(DAB sets use much more power)// Well no. //   

       Well, yes. There's that DSP to run. I've yet to see a DSP that runs at as low power as a PLL.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, May 31 2010

       [AWOL] Divide by user/listner. As you will recall I did say: //Pumping an FM signal over a radial distance and distributing a digital signal within a "cell" network have distinctive energy profiles.// This works out, on average, less for DAB. There is no doubt that it takes more power to disseminate the signal digitally along cells, but at least you reach a set amount of "ears" as opposed to broadcasting into the aether...
4whom, May 31 2010

       No, as you will recall, the original quote was //DAB sets use much more power// - there was no mention of delivery systems. DAB receivers do use much more power than analogue FM sets.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, May 31 2010

       DAB receivers do use more power. I thought sets would mean broadcast and receiver/s as a set.   

       And as [Ian...] said there is DAB+ on the way.   

       Also there was an idea, not so long ago, around digital TV broadcasts ghosting along on analog signals.
4whom, May 31 2010

       "Who am I to blow against the wind?" ~ Paul Simon...
4whom, Jun 10 2010


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