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Unread 11-13-2013, 07:31 PM   #1
kirkham715
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1995 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Monrovia, CA
Posts: 78
Any HD radio upgrade success stories?

My '95 ZJ still has factory AM/FM radio (pre CD's).

I am not that much into music, but the FM still comes in fine enough for me. It is the AM reception that is bad and getting worse, and it is not the radio or car's fault. All my portable radio's have the same fate.

My problem is that despite being 10 miles from Los Angeles, I can get no AM stations at night and much static on AM during the day.
Between increased Edison high tension power lines, more night time AM radio static and being close to some mountains, I get only intense static at night on AM, some daytime reception with static and some areas I drive through with total static during daytime - and it is getting worse.
I am frequently driving evenings and want to get the AM sports stations. My teams do not broadcast on XM or satellite, so that does not help.

I have taken steps of upgrading my antenna, using shielded wiring in car and a filter on the antenna cable

A few people tell me that HD radio upgrade would help me to get better AM - has anyone found this to be true? Does the HD radio bring in all stations better, or is it just radio stations that broadcast in HD?
Thanks for any advice

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Unread 11-13-2013, 07:41 PM   #2
somebody5788
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirkham715 View Post
My '95 ZJ still has factory AM/FM radio (pre CD's).

I am not that much into music, but the FM still comes in fine enough for me. It is the AM reception that is bad and getting worse, and it is not the radio or car's fault. All my portable radio's have the same fate.

My problem is that despite being 10 miles from Los Angeles, I can get no AM stations at night and much static on AM during the day.
Between increased Edison high tension power lines, more night time AM radio static and being close to some mountains, I get only intense static at night on AM, some daytime reception with static and some areas I drive through with total static during daytime - and it is getting worse.
I am frequently driving evenings and want to get the AM sports stations. My teams do not broadcast on XM or satellite, so that does not help.

I have taken steps of upgrading my antenna, using shielded wiring in car and a filter on the antenna cable

A few people tell me that HD radio upgrade would help me to get better AM - has anyone found this to be true? Does the HD radio bring in all stations better, or is it just radio stations that broadcast in HD?
Thanks for any advice
"HD" radio is digital, just like all the over the air TV channels are now. When you get it it's crystal clear but if you don't get it, you get nothing. There's no in between like normal radio with static.

Also not all stations will be available in HD
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Unread 11-13-2013, 07:56 PM   #3
yamifj1200
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I recently replaced the older alpine I had in my 97. After reading some reviews and finding a deal on Ebay I chose a new Alpine CDE-134HD to upgrade the sound system in my Jeep. I have been very happy with the HD performance and the addition of the USB slot. Hope this helps...

Eric M
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Unread 11-13-2013, 08:26 PM   #4
kirkham715
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yamifj1200 View Post
I recently replaced the older alpine I had in my 97. After reading some reviews and finding a deal on Ebay I chose a new Alpine CDE-134HD to upgrade the sound system in my Jeep. I have been very happy with the HD performance and the addition of the USB slot. Hope this helps...

Eric M
Thanks Eric - that one looks good - I see it at about $120 at Amazon and a little less on eBay - certainly affordable if it is a good one - was there any problem with installation?
I have not installed any radios on Jeeps, just a few on my old VW bus and that required a bunch of modifications
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Unread 11-13-2013, 09:03 PM   #5
xcaliber81
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Cant you get radio boosters to gain better signal?
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Unread 11-13-2013, 09:36 PM   #6
kirkham715
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xcaliber81 View Post
Cant you get radio boosters to gain better signal?
I have an antenna with a booster but doesn't help. I am not an expert in this, but a few people have said that boosting the signal will also be boosting the interference. I am only a few miles from hundreds of radio station towers and transmitters - weak signal is not the problem. I get interference on AM radio from electric utility lines, mountains and too many AM signals being broadcast over limited bandwidth and at night the signals from so many other geographic areas travel farther and add to the corrupted signals

I would love to be able to pick up local AM stations that are not broadcast in digital or HD
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Unread 11-13-2013, 09:58 PM   #7
xcaliber81
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I used to work at a toyota dealer and in various new toyotas compared to older ones had better signal with non hd factory decks and those had boosters installed factory. But hd or not I dont think it will be extend your range.
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Unread 11-15-2013, 05:05 PM   #8
yamifj1200
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Location: Richmond, Va.
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" was there any problem with installation?"

Well I did have an aftermarket (Alpine) in there before I made the change. I just used the old Alpine wiring and matched it up with the new wiring. Pretty easy and it didn't take long to get it installed. I am very happy with the effort.. HTH

Eric M
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Unread 11-16-2013, 09:57 AM   #9
HighLonesome
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Boosters are snake oil. The only thing they are good for is a long run between the antenna and receiver when they are placed at the antenna end, but autos don't apply. Also they can cause the FM section to fail from over-voltage. Get rid of it.

I have an HD radio and my ears can't tell the difference on FM. And I never listen to AM so I can't answer your main question.
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Unread 11-17-2013, 06:49 AM   #10
kirkham715
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1995 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Monrovia, CA
Posts: 78
I put a noise supressor in the antenna line behind the radio. Had to take off dash and pull radio, but actual item just plugged in. It seems to have helped maybe 80%. There is still static and interference, but I can get a few AM stations adequately
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