The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

Sentinel readers get shot at free HD radio

 

Rebecca Gourley

RADIO OF THE FUTURE: Haystack Broadcasting general manager Shannon Milburn holds a small HD radio.

Some people with highly developed audiophile sensibilities feel that listening to the radio is like watching fireworks with sunglasses on. You just don’t get the full effect. High definition (HD) radio, with digital sound quality, finally fixes that problem and also provides a lot of new features. And Haystack Broadcasting in Goldendale and The Dalles has HD radio available now.

“You can hear the difference between analog and digital,” says Haystack general manager Shannon Milburn. “It’s like night and day.”

The popular country music station Y102 is now on Haystack’s HD radio, which allows the station to be heard in that sharp digital sound. But increased audio quality is not the only benefit of HD radio.

“HD allows four different channels to be carried on one frequency,” Milburn says. “The primary one keeps the digital signal sharp and crisp. The other three remain in FM quality. But with an HD radio, you can tune in to as many as four different channels.”

Haystack is carrying only two channels on its HD service, Y102 and Star FM, a pop music channel that is now listenable in Goldendale through an HD receiver.

The only catch is, you have to buy a separate HD radio. “There are more coming in automobiles,” Milburn points out. Otherwise HD radios can be purchased for as little as $20. The only way to buy them presently in this area, Milburn says, is online, since no local store carries them.

Readers of The Sentinel, however, have a chance to get a new HD radio for free. Haystack Broadcasting is going to hold a drawing for a free radio to Sentinel readers who enter their names. The drawing will be held April 12. To enter the drawing, readers can email their name in or enter through The Sentinel’s Facebook page, or come in to The Sentinel office.

While many in today’s economy understandably regard spending money on a new radio as completely unnecessary, nonetheless many are getting on the HD radio bandwagon, partly because, some experts say, entertainment becomes more helpful to people in down economies. HD radio seems to be catching on also because of the broad range of its features. Besides digital quality sound, these include the ability to pause live broadcasts for later playback, a bookmark function that lets users save song or advertisement information, program service data, iTunes tagging, and real-time traffic broadcasts so users can avoid rush hour in downtown Goldendale.

 

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