Car Radios


Yeah got the MY19 model. Its got Android auto and Apple Car Play. That is a big bonus, I think I will value that as much as the DAB if not more.


Yea still can’t believe that Mazda don’t have Android Auto and Apple Car Play as standard.

Though it is about to become a dealer fit accessory on any existing Mazda that has the MZD Connect system dating back to 2014.


AM reception in my Yaris is crap ,lose the signal when driving under overhead powerlines or under a overpass,so I hardly ever listen to it in the car.Sometimes I listen to ABC Classic FM though most of the time l listen to my own tunes from my iPhone.


Here’s a fun test for you all to do, & it’s something I never realised until last week, & when it happened, I noticed & it hit me like a ton of bricks, & I wondered why it hadn’t dawned on me before?

I was driving along listening to a distant AM station with reasonably good reception & at a point the reception went crackly, a short distance further on, I passed over a new section of asphalt & the reception came clear, as I left the new asphalt section after few hundred meters, the reception went crackly again.

Different place but, there’s a section of the M1 (F3) motorway at Mardi on the NSW Central Coast, where AM reception is crackly on all stations (all are distant at that spot from Newcastle, Sydney or further afield), I’ve tried this spot in a number of different cars with different radios & it’s the same in all cars at the same spot & I’ve wondered why, as it’s only over a distance of about 600 - 1000 meters?

I’ve always just thought that a particular area had poor ground conductivity & AM reception was bad because of it, but this recent bad, good, bad section over a short distance has led me to believe there may be long stretches of road where there’s bad AM reception, & it could all be due to the amount of metal in the road surface (asphalt or concrete)?

Obviously areas away from the road is likely poor ground conductivity, but driving the highways listening to AM radio, the reception quality (or lack thereof) could well be influenced by the road surface?


Very interesting. I wonder having a van will mean better reception for am radio or worse or no different? Further away from the road surface. In theory fm and dab should be better. Since I have loved radio since I was kid. I remember going on school camps the buses seem to have superior am reception than cars. Might be my imagination any truth to that theory?


Makes sense. The best AM reception in a car is when there is a good ground connection through the tyres. If there is more metal in the makeup of the asphalt rather than a non-conduction substance, that would facilitate a better grounding.

The bus would generally have a larger “full size” vertical antenna as opposed to the miniaturised ones on cars. It’s location in relation to the metal framework of the bus would also influence reception.


Actually I was thinking the opposite.
Rubber is one of the best electrical insulation materials you can get, there would be absolutely no ground electrical/RF connection (only physical) through the tyres.

I’m also thinking more metal in the road surface, would be more like a shield or blocking mat for ground conductivity, rather than making it better?


Yes, I understand what you mean.

Alan Bone will be pinching this for him and Bill’s next ambitious FM conversion attempt.

Freeway through the 2HD TX site, hah, Nearmap’s aerial images don’t lie.


Picked up the Kia today. I am impressed with the car. The dab radio zero glitches. Still learning how to use it. The dab radio is fast too. Feel like there is minimal lag between switching from FM to dab.


Is it Concrete or Asphalt?


This is the answer:

High amount of metal in the road surface.


If you are interested here are some photos of the dab radio. Interesting how the FM radio is mixed with dab. My only wish it had was a reception metre and when Android auto runs you know which station you are tuned into. It’s nice to have no glitches on 2ch and Coles radio. I can’t see the graphics either on the DAB like my bush radio.


If you press the ‘i’ button the radio graphics come up. Its the same radio the Hyundai’s have (I have an i30)


Thanks have to try and find it. :yum:

I get it now. The i on the graphic.


Its at the top left of the square, its yellow on your screen :slight_smile:


Asphalt doesn’t normally contain metal though


The problem I’ve noticed is on the concrete sections of the F3, metal reinforcing in the road, take an exit and the noise decreases.


Thanks, always interesting to see.


The short section is Asphalt, the particular spot on the M1 is Concrete.

The reason I came to these thoughts are, the section of the M1 was longer, it’s recently been dug up & replaced with Asphalt, the new section is clear, then you hit the concrete & it crackles, reverse when you leave the concrete section.

Also about 5-10 years ago, around here, they decided to use high levels of metal in the asphalt for extra strength, using crushed blast furnace metal slag I think? This backfired unfortunately, as it buckled in the hot weather, & made lumps in the surface that had to be ground down. They’ve now started replacing with new asphalt, mostly hot mix.


Is that the section from just north of Tuggerah to Bushells Ridge Road? The concrete surface has been defective there for as long as I can remember, with little ‘snakes’ all across the pavement. I’m not sure what effect this has on reception, if any. I do recall getting something over the top of 2UE one night near Morisset, probably Hamilton NZ.