The Sangean ATS-909X is an advanced shortwave radio that’s priced very affordably. It boasts an incredible performance across all the bands, and the SW performance is amazing, especially when used with a long wire antenna.
The audio quality is great across the bands too, and you get some impressive advanced features like the SSB, versatile SW station memory, a real RF control, easy-to-read LCD display with 12 unique elements, scanning with memory pages and the list goes on.
Sangean ATS-909X Features
Let us discuss the Sangean ATS-909X in more detail in this review.
Amazing Performance Across All Bands
The ATS-909X is spot on with its FM reception and the FM performance overall is incredible. Regardless of whether you use a headphone or listen on the speaker, you wouldn’t find anything to complain about here.
The FM sensitivity is pretty good too and the included antenna works well to let you clearly listen to the smallest of the stations.
The AM performance, however, is hard to define in words. It’s just that good.
The ATS-909X comes with a built-in ferrite bar antenna that works amazingly well at catching the weakest of signals on AM. In fact, a particular customer mentioned that their 120-inch wire antenna hardly ever beats the ATS-909X’s built-in ferrite bar antenna.
The SW performance is pretty good too on the included whip antenna, but it improves significantly when you connect a long wire antenna. You would be hard-pressed to get a better SW performance even with some of the much more expensive radios if you use a good external antenna with the ATS-909X.
Great performance across all the bands almost always means a good audio quality, but it also depends on the quality of the speaker. And in this case, the ATS-909X’s speaker offers top-class audio quality.
The audio output is 1 watt, which is almost twice as much as with many of the other comparable shortwave radios. However, the ATS-909X sounds even better when used with a headphone; it sounds so good you wouldn’t want to put it down.
The audio quality is consistent across all the bands.
Great Functionality All-Round
The ATS-909X leaves nothing to be desired on the functionality front as well. It comes with a real RF control, which is indeed a pretty rare feature to get in this price range. It helps you make sure the ATS-909X doesn’t overload when used with a long wire antenna, which is something that often does wonders for the overall performance.
The LCD display is super functional too as it’s very bright and pretty large. It features an S-meter with 12 unique elements.
Then there’s the versatile SW station memory which you can customize and update according to your needs.
You would find that scanning for SW stations gets very convenient if you use the memory pages to do it.
- Amazing performance on all the bands, with the SW performance being even better when used with a long wire antenna
- The audio quality is excellent and consistently good across all the bands
- Audio quality gets even better with a headphone
- Real RF control feature
- Super functional LCD display with 12 unique elements
- Versatile SW station memory
- 406 memory preset stations with Auto Tuning System
- Automatically finds the strongest signal without having to mess around with the settings
- Comes with SSB
- You can charge the rechargeable batteries when they are still powering the unit
- Great build quality
- Amazingly portable
- The location of the AC power plug on the unit can make using the RF control wheel a little difficult
- Editing station information can mess the audio tone quality a bit
- Turning the whip antenna the right way is a little tricky
An Amazing Radio All-Round
If you’re after an advanced shortwave radio with incredible performance and amazing functionality but do not want to break the bank, the Sangean ATS-909X is pretty much what you’re looking for.
It has everything you can ask for, and there are lots of features that you wouldn’t even expect. Despite the advanced functionalities, however, operating the radio is surprisingly easy.
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