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Here is information about the WR-3, a compact, fully hand-held and self-contained ELF-VLF receiver I manufacture and sell which allow you to do your own listening and observing of natural ELF-VLF radio phenomena signals for the start (and now solar-minumum period) of Solar-Cycle 25.. There are about 1 to 3 days of good whistler-listening mornings and about midnight period Winter 2017-2018. Equinoctal periods (April/October) often also offer the best months of whistler and potential chorus reception. I like listening to the beautiful sounds of night-time lightning static "tweeks" which I find beautiful and musical. All are listenable with the WR-3 presently and depending upon daily/nightly conditions.
A montage of my own large collection of various WR-3s and prototypes and a shot of me in the eastern Mojave Desert listening to sunrise whistlers.
The WR-3 is a self-contained, hand-holdable unit. The unit is highly portable, and I use a a few of my own collection during my VLF recording expeditions. When I must bicycle or walk into listening sites or simply to check out a potential listening site for extended recording sessions, I use a WR-3 hand-held unit to make my observations and to check for powerline hum levels and site suitablity conditions. When camping in my camper-van, I use a similar unit modified for in-vehicle use (The WR-4b) that has the same sensitive input circuitry and identical audio amplifier.
BNC Whip Antenna sources:
All WR-3's have BNC antenna connectors (Amphenol female-bulkhead-receptacle type) on their topsides for use with telescoping whip antennas that have a male BNC connector mounted on their base. Many people might have their own whip antennas, but we recommend the Smiley Superstick II telescoping-whip about 1.3 meters in length (54-inches fully extended).
Again, the very popular telescoping antenna (included) works excellently with the WR-3 is the "Super-Stick II" 2-meter 5/8-wave made by Smiley Antenna Co., Inc. (408 La Cresta Heights Rd, El Cajon, CA 92021, USA: www.smileyantenna.com). This great antenna is 10 section, 54-inches/138 cm in length fully extended, with a loading coil on its base for use with ham radio 2-meter hand-held radios or scanners, and it works great with the WR-3 as well, because the matching-coil is in series with the antenna (and not shunted)! You can also order more from their great website at Smiley Antenna, Inc.
(OTHERS I am not sure of):
2) At: ALF Enterprises, 18933 59th Ave NE, Suite 114, Arlington, VA 98223, (360) 403-4840, Order the BNC-based whip antenna at ALF Enterprises HERE.
http://www.ALFenterprises.com for US$19.00 plus shipping via USPS and sales tax if applicable.
This hand-held receiver is a great unit for taking along wherever you may go -- slip it into your pocket! Very easy to use, the WR-3 has one control knob, antenna jack (BNC type) and headphone jack (1/8-inch mini-stereo type). The WR-3 remains very popular and in use worldwide. The WR-3's headphone jack is compatible with line-in inputs - I directly connect my own WR-3s to my Sony Mini-Disc recorder's line-in jack via a 3-conductor mini-plug (1/8 inch/3.5 mm) stereo patchcord, and monitor the audio using the mini-disc recorder's headphone jack..
The WR-3 is only available direct from S. P. McGreevy Productions. Order this receiver via this page.
Receive frequency range: 0.1-14 kHz (100 - 14,000 Hz)
The WR-3's peak frequency approx. 1.5 to 3 kHz with gradual frequency roll-offs below 200 Hz and above 4 kHz to slightly-reduce 50 and 60 Hz hum and also excessive Russian ALPHA Radionavigation signal reception (Alpha begins at about 11 kHz). RFI protected via input RC filter to reduce/eliminate LF-VHF broadcast, Loran-C radio nav., and utility station overload and IMD.
Audio Output: Maximum 100 mW into 16-Ohm stereo headphones. Highest sensitivity freq. range 0.5 - 3 kHz where nearly all natural emissions occur which are readily audible to human ears easily. Internal RC filter in the WR-3 is peaked at 1.5 kHz with gradual roll-off above 3 kHz - essentially it works best for most natural radio phenomena below 10 khz.
Enclosure: Black-painted cast-aluminum "Hammond" enclosure: rock-solid and shields circuitry from broadcast RFI. Minimal grounding/earthing is essential to this kind of receiver to function properly - back years ago with units I built for my recording sessions.
Headphone jack: 1/8 inch (3.5 mm) stereo (3-conductor) audio jack
Enclosure Size: H: 110 mm (4 7/16 in.) W: 60 mm (2 3/8 in.) D: 31 mm (1 3/16 in.)
Weight: Approx. 300 gm (11 oz.) with battery
Antenna: Requires a telescoping whip with BNC-type male connector. The WR-3 has a topside female BNC connector that can use popular whip antennas for 2-meter amateur radio use. Optimal antenna-length should be 1 to 2 metres in length (40 to 100 inches). (see above).
Antenna input impedance: Approx. 10 Megohms @ 1 kHz / Zener-diode input protection against ESD.
Power: Use a 9 volt snap-type battery for 15-40 hours of listening time depending on type (@7-20 mA current consumption). Alkaline batteries most recommended.
Acceptable Headphone Impedance: 8-32 Ohms (16 Ohm mini-stereo type recommended)
The WR-3 has a 90-day money back guarantee if you are not satisfied with it and the unit is returned to me in good shape. It is exceedingly rare it develops problems under normal use (do be careful about the battery clip wires when attaching a new battery - 9v battery clips are delicate - I have a couple of units in use for over 10 years now without glitches--some of them treated a bit roughly in various backpacks and while traveling. The new, more robust whip-antenna and BNC jack has solved many former antenna problems that occurred with the screw-on type and makes it compatible with many whip antennas (including those for 2 meter ham use on an HT) as well.
If you should experience trouble with the unit within the 90-days, return it for repair for no-cost (please keep a copy of your invoice!). After the 90-day period, we will will fix or/replace it and return it to you for a flat fee of US$30 plus $5.00 shipping (to U.S.), US$7 to CAN; US$15 Overseas. Updated April 2015.
Now, regarding your PRIVACY: NO personal information you supply (Name, postal and e-mail address, telephone number, etc) will be released to any entity outside of my own company. In addition, I myself do not believe in partaking in e-mail 'spamming,' and so you'll never be bothered by sales information from us--in any form after you receive your shipment. I deeply respect and desire privacy (being a very private person myself).
Stephen P. McGreevy, August 2004, rev. October 2010
Contact me for additional WR-3 receiver information/inquiries - see bottom of that page of a lot of pictures too.
[WR-3 LISTENING GUIDE - HTML version]
[WR-3 LISTENING GUIDE PDF-format]
[WR-3 ORDER FORM WITH PAYMENT INFO.]
[My email page contact info., and travel pictures as well]