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Raspbian compatible FM/AM band USB tuner

Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:46 pm

Good evening.

I wonder if any of you can tell me any kind of brand and hopefully model of FM tuner USB stick that will actually work with Raspbian on a Pi. If it is capable of the AM band as well, so much the better. I am well wandered in Unix in general, but i know very little of what drivers are available for peripherals under Linux in general, and since it's mostly a matter of Raspbian compatibility, i thought i'd ask here first.

Long story short, it involves a family member turning 90 next year, and i have his old radio which he had since before i was born. I want to refurb it with a Pi and a radio tuner of sorts, and make it function as close to his old youth when he sat and listened to radio every morning and every weekend. I can figure out all the mechanics myself, but i need an FM radio tuner device, and especially if it can do both FM and AM, it would be ideal.

There's a ton of such devices out there, but three hours of Google made me none the wiser about which would work with Raspbian. They are usually around €10-15, which is quite fine, but buying the wrong ones too many times could sum up in a really bad way, so i hope someone here has the answer.

Thank you in advance,


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Re: Raspbian compatible FM/AM band USB tuner

Tue Nov 19, 2013 9:24 pm

Pi Forum Search and Google yields answers to many questions

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Re: Raspbian compatible FM/AM band USB tuner

Tue Nov 19, 2013 10:20 pm

Radio receivers and computers don't play nicely due to RF interference, which is why a very long lead and an external antenna would be needed.
As for USB AM (not to be confused with upper side band) I haven't seen any for the PC, there are some FM ones like the RTL2832U but I cannot comment on Pi compatibility.
The other alternative would be an FM radio based on the TEA5767 FM module with I2C interface - http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/searc ... ds=TEA5767 but to be perfectly honest if you want a radio then just buy a radio.

Richard S.

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Joined: Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:24 pm

Re: Raspbian compatible FM/AM band USB tuner

Wed Nov 20, 2013 1:19 am

The whole idea is to blow new life into an old radio cabinet, and the first thing i think is "hey, a Pi can do that .. i bet!", if you follow me. So while i get your point about just buying a radio, well .. that's no fun! :)

So interference is no issue - the cabinet is about 60cm (roughly 2ft) across, so putting the Pi in one corner and the radio receiver in the opposite should take care of most of that. And it doesn't really matter if the sound is not perfect, it is to act and behave like a vintage radio after all.

And yes, radio tuners do actually exist in FM/AM flavors. For instance, Logitec (not to confuse with Logitech) make one with coaxial antenna shunt and AM antenna as extra equipment. But again - does Raspbian have drivers for any of them?

Thank you both for your input so far, two leads are definitely two more than i started the day with! And PS: By AM i do mean the MF band.


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