Saturday, August 05, 2006

Sangean to introduce 'first DRM Radio' in Europe this October

After a long wait, a major manufacturer has at last announced plans to release what it calls 'the first DRM Radio' in Europe in October 2006.

The DRM-40 will have DRM coverage on longwave, mediumwave and shortwave. It will also have DAB coverage, which Sangean describes as “the digital alternative for the FM band.”

We think this is actually a misleading description, as the DRM Consortium is working on extending the DRM specification to include the current FM band, whereas DAB uses much higher frequencies. The radio will have RDS, according to Sangean. There’s also a USB connection and an SD-card slot, meaning that the radio can play and record MP3 files.

The DRM-40 uses the same case as the existing DPR-1 DAB receiver, which means the size will be 180×260x90 mm. Sangean says the weight will be 1700 gramm.

The recommended retail price in Europe, including VAT, will be 299 euros. The website gives the following capsule summary of the features:

RM / DAB Band III / FM / AM / LW / SW
RDS, AMSS and Radio text or DLS
MP3 Playback and recording on SD
Humane wake System on Radio or Buzzer Alarm
12 Alarm Settings
Timed recording
Clock with Auto Update
EPG, Pause Plus, SPDIF and Key Lock
6 Presets for each Waveband
with SD slot and USB connection
with SAI und USB connection
with RF-antenna and BAR Antenna
Audio Out and headphone Connection
With AC-adapter / operates also on DC (Batteries not included)
We hope to acquire and test one of these radios as soon as they become available.

In the UK, this radio will be sold as the Roberts MP40.
It’s not clear if there are any differences in the specification.
Some years ago the boss of Sangean visited Radio Netherlands, and at that time he told them that Sangean would make customised versions for any OEM customer ordering a minimum of 500 units.