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  1. #1
    Member Clunkerider's Avatar
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    Radio for Bicycle

    Okay this will sound wierd to some...but do they still make radio's for bicycle's? I see some riders with ipod's but I would be scared not to hear traffic etc...with ear buds in my ears. What about a lightweight little radio that mounts on the frame some where or handlebars? Don't get me wrong...I am not looking for a Peewee Herman Radio Flyer, I just think some days tunes or weather reports or news might be nice to hear while commuting.

  2. #2
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    Any small portable radio would work. So would a cheap scanner that could pick up wide band FM.

    Or you could pick up a pair of amplified computer speakers, and plug them into your MP3 (yes, even the ipod/iphone) headphone jack, and there you go.

    I would start here and move up in options.

    1. Look for a Centon Craze MP3 player. They look like USB thumb drives, and are really cheap. I bought a 2 gig Centon MP3 player years ago (for $20 new), and it still works. It will play just about any audio file (WAV,MP3, OOG, etc). It is powered with a single AAA battery. Since it is also a USB drive, you can put music on it (and use it as a stand alone player) and also put your favorite spread sheets from work on it. It is also a voice recorder and a FM radio. The earbuds it comes with suck - but who cares. You will be throwing them out anyway.

    2. Get some inexpensive external computer speakers, if you do not already have a bunch of them from old computers.

    3. The MP3 player can be attached to your bike with velcro, the speakers can be attached with nylon tie straps.

  3. #3
    mutant... gumbii's Avatar
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    my phone is pretty loud... loud enough to hear my music wile riding the river trails...


    but my buddy also has this little battery powered ipod dock with speakers he takes when we go long distance... iwouldn't want my cell phone to die on us way out there...

  4. #4
    BeaverTerror Yan's Avatar
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    You can pick up a decent shortwave receiver for not a lot of money. Check your favourite radio forum. I use a Degen 1103 for bicycle touring. It's too big to use while cycling and is not waterproof. I think this is the biggest issue you'll have. I'm sure there are waterproof radios out there.
    Yan

    2013 True North custom touring; 2010 Novara Randonee; 2009 Unicycle.com Club 24"; 1989 Miele Tivoli; 1979 Colnago Sport

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Shortwave receiver? That's pretty sick. But I guess if you want to hear BBC World Service or Radio Korea or even hams talking about antennas and amplifiers there is only one way to go!

    For my purposes, the cheap Centon MP3 player and small powered speakers works well. But I would only put all that stuff on for rather short (less than 20 mile) slow group rides on my MTB. For a faster pace ride, or a longer ride, I think it would all just get in my way.

  6. #6
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    I use a Creative Zen Stone Plus w/ Speaker. Built-in fm radio, too. I zip tie it to my bar (reusable zip tie). The speaker is loud enough to be heard at speed, though heavy traffic will drown it out.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    my MP3 player has an FM receiver which I use on some lunchtime walks. was tempted to use the radio on my last weekend joyride but didn't - maybe next time
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  8. #8
    cyclepath daredevil's Avatar
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    With the benefit of a mirror, one can ride with their eyes instead of their ears and enjoy the full benefit of stereophonic sound with the ear piece of one's choice. For me, Sennheiser PX 100's. Sorry to be the dissenting voice but you must admit, I am on topic.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    "Without music, life would be a mistake."
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  9. #9
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    Having ear buds in your ear does not necessarily mean that you can't hear. Nobody says you have to crank the volume up so loud that it drowns out environmental sounds. If you turn the volume up to where the apparent volume is the same as if you had a speaker on the bars, it should be no different one way or the other.

    Some people use MP3 players with built in speakers, such as the Zen Stone.

    I listen to NPR and audiobooks on my commute, and with one bud in my right ear, by my actual testing, my ability to hear approaching cars is not at all diminished. I can still hear them before I can see them (on long sparsely traveled country roads) and can hear them at least 15 seconds before they get to me (in town).
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  10. #10
    mutant... gumbii's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
    my MP3 player has an FM receiver which I use on some lunchtime walks. was tempted to use the radio on my last weekend joyride but didn't - maybe next time
    the new Ipod nano has am/fm radio and a video camera... the battery life on that dude is also great...

    Quote Originally Posted by ItsJustMe View Post
    Having ear buds in your ear does not necessarily mean that you can't hear. Nobody says you have to crank the volume up so loud that it drowns out environmental sounds. If you turn the volume up to where the apparent volume is the same as if you had a speaker on the bars, it should be no different one way or the other.

    Some people use MP3 players with built in speakers, such as the Zen Stone.

    I listen to NPR and audiobooks on my commute, and with one bud in my right ear, by my actual testing, my ability to hear approaching cars is not at all diminished. I can still hear them before I can see them (on long sparsely traveled country roads) and can hear them at least 15 seconds before they get to me (in town).
    my earbuds for my ipod drown out all sounds even when it's not playing anything... they're the bose types with sound cancellation... i would never take them out on a ride... i wouldn't be able to hear anything... alot of earbuds do this... especially internal ones...


    i just got some ear buds for my cellphone... i can hear my music, and if i get a phone call i'll be able to answer without reaching for my phone... but i hardly use them since i ride with a buddy and we're always talking about fish tanks and stuff...

  11. #11
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gumbii View Post
    my earbuds for my ipod drown out all sounds even when it's not playing anything... they're the bose types with sound cancellation... i would never take them out on a ride... i wouldn't be able to hear anything... alot of earbuds do this... especially internal ones...
    Yes, I have several pair like that. There's a simple solution - get some that don't.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  12. #12
    mutant... gumbii's Avatar
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    those suck though... i can't hear the bass guitar on they...


    but i don't commute much in traffic... mostly river trail riding...

  13. #13
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    cheap Phillips earbuds amplify ambient sound. I can walk down the street and hear insects. SERIOUSLY!
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  14. #14
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gumbii View Post
    those suck though... i can't hear the bass guitar on they...


    but i don't commute much in traffic... mostly river trail riding...
    You think you're going to hear the bass guitar on a radio with 2" speakers mounted on the handlebar?

    What I'm saying is, for $10 or less, you can get some open air headphones for use on the bike, and if you keep the volume to the point where it has the same apparent volume as you would have turned the radio on the handlebars up to, it will GUARANTEED sound better than some crappy speaker on the handlebar, it'll be cheaper, and you'll still be able to hear the surrounding sounds as well.

    Or you can spend more money on speakers and have worse sound.

    If you really want good sound, buy some Koss PortaPros. Those sound better than any earbuds. Unless you're looking for artificially enhanced bass. Personally I listen to my music as recorded.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  15. #15
    mutant... gumbii's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItsJustMe View Post
    You think you're going to hear the bass guitar on a radio with 2" speakers mounted on the handlebar?

    What I'm saying is, for $10 or less, you can get some open air headphones for use on the bike, and if you keep the volume to the point where it has the same apparent volume as you would have turned the radio on the handlebars up to, it will GUARANTEED sound better than some crappy speaker on the handlebar, it'll be cheaper, and you'll still be able to hear the surrounding sounds as well.

    Or you can spend more money on speakers and have worse sound.

    If you really want good sound, buy some Koss PortaPros. Those sound better than any earbuds. Unless you're looking for artificially enhanced bass. Personally I listen to my music as recorded.
    i rock these guys...



    they have alot of bass...

  16. #16
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gumbii View Post
    i rock these guys...



    they have alot of bass...

    And "a lot" too, I'm sure. Bose is pretty good, though certainly overpriced and not the best at anything they do, in my experience.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItsJustMe View Post

    If you really want good sound, buy some Koss PortaPros. Those sound better than any earbuds. Unless you're looking for artificially enhanced bass. Personally I listen to my music as recorded.
    i don't want to start any debate, but that isn't true.

  18. #18
    cyclepath daredevil's Avatar
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    ^^^^well let's agree then that they are pretty affordable, nice sounding cans. The Porta Pros that is.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    "Without music, life would be a mistake."
    -- Friedrich Nietzsche

  19. #19
    Seņior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
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    I think that for the $35 that PortaPros cost, you really can't get much better sound. I think that at ANY price level, cans sound better than buds, but I have never spent $100 on buds. If I get into the real money area, I'll pick up some Sennheiser cans. A friend has some $450 Sennheisers and they're excellent.
    Work: the 8 hours that separates bike rides.

  20. #20
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    I just purchased one like in the below link used on CL for $10. It is branded under many different names like Emerson, Sunlite, Lundin ect. The light is useless, the built-in horn is pretty timid but it could warn a walker you are behind him/her without shocking them too much. The Radio works pretty good, surprisingly both on am and fm. At least it does so here in Miami. Volume isn't too bad. New I see them locally for around $30.

    http://www.amazon.com/Sunlite-Deluxe.../dp/B0011FWPA6

  21. #21
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    I know this is an old thread, but I'm going to reply. It might help someone else.

    I wanted an AM/FM radio on my bike for listening to baseball games and sports talk radio, but I wasn't impressed with the small number of bike-specific products that I found (like the aforementioned Sunlite radio). I decided that what would probably work best for me would be a small pocket radio mounted somewhere on the bike. I ended up buying a Sony ICF-S10MK2 radio ($10) and an Arkon SM427 mount ($7.50). I haven't been able to ride with this yet, but it seems like it will work nicely. The mount is not made to be completely secure, but simple things could be used to make it more secure (rubber bands, elastic straps, etc.)

  22. #22
    Senior Member trestlehed's Avatar
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    I have a couple of homemade Walkman/iPod holders that I made many years ago and they work great. However, I just found this gadget holder and ordered it out of curiosity. Very well made and thoughtfully designed. Requires no tools to mount to handlebars. Can be found at Thinkgeek.com
    Note: On the website opening pic it doesn't show the 2 fold out arms which support your gadget from the bottom (in conjuction with the 2 side squeeze pads), the pic shows the gadget holder with the 2 bottom support arms folded in/closed. If you click on the "customer action shots" it shows a pic with the bottom support arms folded out.

    http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/tra...adget%20holder

    Think Geek also has an aluminum tube speaker which comes with a handlebar mount for your bike. This could be a good solution for those wishing to hear music without wearing headphones, (I did not order this one yet):

    http://www.thinkgeek.com/electronics...tube%20speaker

    And no, I do not work for or have any affiliation with Thingeek or their suppliers...

    Attached are a couple of pics of my homemade version gadget holder:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by trestlehed; 02-02-11 at 03:26 PM. Reason: .
    "Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid"...

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  23. #23
    Junior Member
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    Bike Radio

    Please see my suggested solution at http://youtu.be/z5QQ-TupP7Y.

    Cheers,

    Frank

  24. #24
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    This one has really good reviews on amazon, and is about the size of a 3x5 card. It should be mountable with one of those generic gadget mounts:

    http://www.amazon.com/Sony-ICF-S10MK...1423677&sr=8-1

    I have been thinking about doing the same thing. One downside of commuting by bike has been that I miss the news in the morning. I'll let you know if I get one.

    -Greg

  25. #25
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    I have an Xceon Acouztic headlight/mp3 player. The light is a five mode three watt LED. The mp3 player has a 2 GB capacity, which is plenty for any ride I've used it on.

    Of course this is not an AM/FM radio, but it is great for listening to music of your choice with no commercials.

    Here's a video I did of a ride around town with some rat rod bikes last weekend. I had the Acouztic mounted on the handlebars playing old school funk. YouTube's "Content ID" picked up the first song played, but luckily the video isn't blocked anywhere AFAIK.

    The sound in person is better. I'm surprised at the amount of bass you get with that tiny 1" speaker.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9p-hUqqqL54

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