Using an external aerial for my Pure Marshall Evoke-1XT DAB radio

Radio that looks like a Marshall guitar amp. The volume knob goes up to 11.
My DAB radio on my bedside table (ignore the dust!)
The volume goes up to 11.

As I have said elsewhere, I love my Pure Marshall Evoke-1XT DAB radio. However, over the last couple of years my experience with it hasn’t been great due to poor radio signal in my house.

With the radio sited next to my bed, every time I moved into a particular spot the signal would drop and the sound cut out. Moving it to the bedside table on the other side of my bed improved things but it’s literally on the other side of the room (I have a big bed and a small room) and I would need to step across the bed to reach it.

If only there was a way to afix an external aerial…

External aerial

Dear reader, I have had this DAB radio now for 13 years and this week was the first week that I realised I could afix an external aerial to this DAB radio.

I checked the user manual. The diagram showed number 14: “Aerial – F-type connector for the supplied telescopic or other aerial.”

Diagram of the features on the rear of the radio

I’m sorry, what?!

… or other aerial?!

I can use another aerial! Oh what rapture!

A quick search for an external DAB-compatible aerial with an F-type connector offered me this Bingfu DAB FM radio antenna with 3 meter extension cable for a bargain £8.99.

Image of aerial and adapters
Bingfu DAB FM radio antenna with 3 meter extension cable and a variety of adapters
(it doesn’t come with the white and purple rainbow, however)

Fitting

Removing the supplied telescopic aerial was simply a matter of carefully unscrewing it with a suitable adjustable spanner.

I then fitted the Bingfu aetial; I didn’t need any of the adapters, it simply screws onto the F-type connector.

Rear of Pure DAB radio, showing the external aerial screwed into it
External aerial screwed into the F-type connector on the rear of the radio
(which was successfully PAT tested in November 2017)

Tuning

Another thing I didn’t realise is that the radio also has a built-in tool for helping you locate the strongest signal for your aerial placement.

One of the menu items is called “Tuning aid”. Scroll through the numbered ranges until you find one that displays a number of blocks; UK stations are in the range 11B to 12D. This meter displays the strength of your signal. The empty box is the threshold above which you will experience a good signal. The aim is to get the dark boxes to move to the right of the threshold.

Diagram of the tuning aid

Simply move your aerial around the room and keep an eye on the meter until you find the best signal. Mine was directly behind my headboard, reaching up to the ceiling.

Aerial attached to the wall, reaching up to the ceiling, partially obscured by a painting hanging on the wall. The painting reminds me of a walk I took in Derbyshire once with a beautiful girl
Oh! The painting? That was in the bathroom in my flat in London. Near the dartboard.

And relax…

Something I’ve been focusing on this year is better sleep hygiene. I don’t want to keep reaching for my smartphone during the night or rely on it as my alarm, so having my radio alarm again has been wonderful.

I wish I’d realised this earlier.

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 50 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master at Sky. Latterly, web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and former warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

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