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My DXing hobby is expanding into the FM radio band. Whereas I "came back" to TV and AM DXing, FM will be an entirely new band for me. To commemorate this decision I bought a 6-Element FM yagi, pictured in my bedroom (along with a counterweight on the back to prevent its PVC mast from sagging). This is the first yagi I've owned since moving to Florida. Unfortunately it will not be going outside as I live in an apartment, and it's not lanai-friendly like the CM4228 I bought last year for TV DX . But I decided that if these antennas are good enough for DXers attics, it's good enough for a second-story bedroom (the living room is larger but a ceiling fan gets in the way).
The lack of TV DX this summer was a very compelling reason for me to expand into another band. And when I discovered how many stations there are around the Caribbean (in countries I never expect to catch on TV) that sealed the deal. FM is still analog and not unlike the audio carriers of pre-transition TV. There is a challenge, though, in that the FM band is extremely crowded. A directional antenna is essential. The tuner you choose is also more important, as the mediocre ones I have "overload" very easily and create phantom signals out of my local stations. I plan to buy a hi-performance tuner early next year. Until then I'll just try to manage.
I also hinted that I'd start DXing NOAA weather stations, but I think FM will need all the attention I can give it at the beginning (and I'm still acclimating myself to the AM band, too). Weather radio will therefore be put on hold. As for trusty old (now digital) TV, it's still first in the pecking order. When I look for an opening TV is still the first band I check.
Unless you count the drive home from work. After all, the car has my best FM tuner. :)
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