[rec.audio.car] Recommendations wanted for car FM signal booster...

miker@polari.UUCP (Mike Ranta) (05/03/91)

>I was paging though Crutchfield the other day when i came
>upon a fm signal booster for ~30 bucks. Now, i thought to
>myself, I wouldn't mind trying one of those out, since
>my rather cheezy tuner don't lock into the stereo carrier
>too good. But I wasn't about to buy it, for several reasons..

FM signal boosters are basically worthless.  Unless you have a _real_
cheap receiver _and_ live way out in the sticks, they only create 
more problems than they solve.
For one thing, signal strength usually isn't the problem with FM
reception.  All that crap you hear as you drive around is usually
multipath and is caused by reflections not by low signal (it does
_appear_ that the signal is dropping in and out but it's actually
being cancelled).  Secondly, if you do live a long distance from
your stations, the limiting factor is usually the noise figure of
the front end of your receiver.  The noise figure of the FM boosters
is usually no better, if not worse than most receivers.  Finally,
the boosters also amplify all the strong stuff and usually cause
overload problems (and make the multipath worse).