Questions and Answers – January 2021

We’ve recently received questions about adding stations to Internet radios, updating a tuner for DAB+ reception and a JVC radio which doesn’t receive a station.

We also received some questions about updating Pure radios for DAB+ reception. The new questions and answers have been added on How can I upgrade my Pure DAB radio to receive DAB+ stations?

Thanks to everyone who has sent a question during January.

Add online radio station to an Internet radio

How do I add my Internet radio station on my Internet radio?
– Kia

The procedure for adding an online radio station to an Internet radio normally depends on the device. Some Internet radio receivers, like the Pinnacle SoundBridge, have a control panel which can be accessed from a PC on your network. You can then edit the presets to add your own stations.

Many current models of Internet radios rely on an online directory of stations. To add a new station to your radio there could be a service you can sign up for.

For a radio like the Roberts Stream 94i you can go to the Frontier Nuvola Smart Radio portal and add a station. The manual for your radio should have details of how stations can be added or which directory or portal the radio uses.

Some database providers have a form where you can suggest a radio station to be added for all radios which use the service. For example, vTuner has a suggestion form.

My JVC boombox won’t pick up talkRADIO

My JVC RC-D327B boombox won’t pick up talkRADIO on DAB.
– Robert

It would be worth checking if the radio can receive other stations from the same transmitters as talkRADIO. After using the rescan function you could see if the radio can receive Planet Rock, Virgin Radio or Absolute Radio 90s. If the radio can’t find these stations try repositioning the radio and aerial and use the retune function again. You could also use an online coverage checker to confirm if you should be able to pick up talkRADIO.

If you can hear those stations, but still not talkRADIO, it’s likely that the radio is not compatible with DAB+ radio stations. talkRADIO switched from the original DAB format to the newer DAB+ last summer. Not all digital radios can receive DAB+ stations and unfortunately many cannot be upgraded.

The JVC RC-D327B is exclusive to Currys and an online customer answer to a question appears to confirm that the radio only receives DAB stations. You could contact Currys to confirm if this is the case. There are already more than twenty DAB+ stations and there are likely to be more in the future, so if it’s possible to exchange the radio this could be worth doing.

Can a Sony tuner be upgraded for DAB+ reception?

I have a Sony ST-D777ES FM/DAB tuner but there is unfortunately no DAB+. Manufactured before that time but it’s a beautiful piece of equipment. Is there ANY way to modify it to work with DAB+?
– Bjorn

The Sony ST-D777ES tuner appears to have been released in 2000, several years before radios and tuners appeared which could receive DAB+ stations.

Unfortunately there doesn’t appear to be an option to update the tuner. The manual doesn’t mention updating the software and the device doesn’t have a USB port. The later Sony ST-SDB900 also doesn’t appear to be upgradeable either.

The range of tuners on sale with or without DAB+ has shrunk in recent years. The current line-ups in the UK from Sony, Yamaha and Arcam don’t list a radio tuner. Two FM/DAB tuners are still available from Rotel and some stereo receivers do have a built-in DAB+ tuner.

Brands like Yamaha, Arcam and Marantz do offer network audio streamers which can play radio stations over the Internet. These streams could be in higher quality than DAB, but it’s worth trying these devices in a store. Some devices work with an app or use an external service like TuneIn for Internet radio reception. If these are slow or difficult to use on the device itself the experience may not be as simple as with a digital radio hi-fi separate.