Get Ready for Some Baseball!

bb-blogIt’s that time of year, where baseball fans of all ages gear up for the upcoming season. Although it’s soggy and wet (and even snowing in some parts) here in Northern California, there are places like Arizona and Florida where the sun is shining. We will just have to live vicariously through those fortunate fans of the sun belt who are watching their favorite teams get ready for baseball..

For the folks that can’t make the trek to Arizona or Florida, there’s nothing like listening to baseball on the radio. We hear time and again from our customers that baseball is what started their life long love of radio. There are many who even take their pocket radio to the game because they prefer the play by play of their beloved radio sportscaster to the announcer in the stadium. Some of the most famous voices in radio are baseball announcers. Wikipedia has an quite a list of current MLB announcers.

Sports talk continues to be an area of consistent growth for radio. With pre-game shows, post game shows and every imaginable facet of sports being covered 24/7 by ESPN, Westwood One, Fox Sports plus many local independent stations, there isn’t a shortage of options when it comes to listening to sports talk radio. Often local stations are broadcasting high school and college games as well.

If you find yourself having trouble pulling in the game, call us up and we can help you figure out which radio might be the best solution for your specific situation.

 

 

Local Radio Still Matters

wearebroadcasters_2017_infographic

Image used with permission from National Broadcasters Association

Do you remember when you could call up your local radio station and ask to dedicate a song?  Maybe you just wanted to start a friend’s day right with their favorite tune, or wanted that special someone to know you were thinking of them.  Regardless of your sentiments, there was the thrill of knowing everyone listening for miles around heard your name and theirs over the air waves.  And if you were lucky enough to get on air yourself, you tried to come up with something aside from “This is for Tony, because he’s so cool!”, but choked on the spot instead.

Today our existence is filled with signals and public sharing, so feeling like part of the world at large is easy.  Quick as a flash, half the planet can watch that video you posted of your grandchild sticking cereal up their nose.  But for a price.  You have to pay someone for that connection, and in some way they are using your profile to make money.

Luckily, some things have not changed.  Radio broadcasts are still free and quite prolific.  According to the web site www.wearebroadcasters.com, there are 15,516 full power radio stations in the U.S., that are listened to by more than 268 million Americans each week.

According to a response to a survey from PoytnerThe purpose of local is to see, know, care about and understand your community. C. Crane believes that local radio is at the heart of every community and this sentiment is consistently reinforced when we talk to radio listeners every day. We recently experienced it first hand when our Fortuna High Varsity Basketball team traveled to the North Coast Section playoffs – below is the testimonial from one of our staff:

My son is playing in the North Coast Section’s basketball playoffs this evening in San Francisco. I didn’t travel this time and was so bummed out that I wouldn’t be able to watch or hear the game. I have been unable to find any source of live streaming or local or online televised broadcast BUT our local guy Tag Wotherspoon will be down there covering the game on 95.1 FM so I’ll be able to listen. This is the only local radio station that covers any of the local high school sports and I am so grateful.

Local radio continues to serve their community – they announce the local events, tell you who is playing at what venues, help you decide where to go for dinner and the local news highlights what issues are specific to the area you are in. If you’re lucky enough to be a sports fan in a town with a professional team, you might find yourself watching the game on television, but listening to your local announcer call the play by play on the radio.  If you are further interested in this topic, The National Association of Broadcasters has a very informative web site with information on the status of issues that affect radio listeners.

C. Crane has many options for you to take advantage of those free signal broadcasts.  Our radios are made with the listener in mind, and we can help you determine which model would best suit your needs.  We know that radio has the unique ability to entertain, inform and connect and appreciate the opportunity to help you stay connected to your community.

Please share with us – Does local radio matter to you and if so why?

The Month for Thanksgiving

begrateful

This is the month to reflect on all that we have and what we are truly grateful for, to get in the spirit we wanted to find out which radio show, host or station you are most thankful for! Enter in the comments below and be entered to win the product of your choice (excluding the AEGO sound systems).  Drawing will be held November 30th. Please one entry per person.

How To Get Your Groove On

Senta_Ally-0901While the long daylight hours of summer give us a chance to enjoy the outdoors, many people use that opportunity to tackle those outside chores that just can’t be accomplished during the other wet, cold seasons. Music, news, audio books, or talk programs can make those monotonous tasks like mowing, weeding, painting, or cleaning seem to go much faster. And a lot of research has been done that support what most folks already know from experience; listening to music relieves anxiety and improves your mood.

Earbuds are good for listening during some activities, but the wires tend to get tangled up in gloves, tools, and handles while gardening or working in the garage. And while smart phones, tablets, and notebooks offer access to your favorite music streams, audio books or podcasts, the audio from those small built-in speakers usually leaves a lot to be desired for voice and lyric quality.

The Senta Ally Bluetooth Stereo Speaker is a great solution that gives you crisp, full range stereo sound with bass performance. It is unique from similar models because of the varied ways you can connect to your audio source: USB, SD card, auxiliary input through a 1/8” jack, or paired with a Bluetooth enabled device. It is small enough to sit on a window sill, and would easily fit in a work cart. The 6-8 hour battery life means you will probably be done with your chores before requiring a recharge!

Don’t miss out on getting audio clarity when you are taking care of those summer jobs around the house and yard. And when you are done, use the Senta Ally while lounging out on the deck or entertaining. This speaker is loud enough to fill the area with rich audio that everyone can enjoy.

Tell us your favorite “Summer Song” in the comments and you will be entered into the drawing for a FREE Senta Ally! One entry per person. Drawing will be held July 8th.

Congratulations to winner l w c!

Gift Guide for Dads and Grads

dadgrad

Tis the season to shop for some of the most important people in your life. Your dad (or husband) – the man you can never figure out what to buy for since he’s already bought everything for himself. Your graduating child or grandchild who thinks the world of you but may not share your taste in gifts….

We have some ideas to help you find the perfect gift.

An emergency radio that has a built in flashlight – what a great way to show you care. Make sure that they have what they need in the event of an emergency. Everyone thinks their cell phones replace a good radio nowadays, but we’ve learned (in some cases the hard way) that this just isn’t true. All circuits busy anyone? Phone died and the power is out, and your car is floating down the river? We’ve heard stories like this, and more, where radio is the only way they know what’s going on – and the CC Solar Observer can charge most cell phones.

The Senta Ally Bluetooth speaker with FM Radio is always well received – We can’t tell you how many employees here have given these as gifts to their dads, siblings and graduating family members. This speaker has a very broad appeal and is really easy to use. They are in work shops, on kitchen counters, and out in the garden. The only limitation is your smartphone’s apps or your playlist. It also has a replaceable, rechargeable battery.

Have a gardener in your life? Get them the garden noise blocking headphones – This may be more geared for dads, although Jessica’s younger brother has found great use for this with his smartphone in the wood shop. The planer is just too loud! Bob’s gardener uses the kit with our CC Pocket radio regularly while weed eating out in the yard.

The Super WiFi Repeater System will allow anyone looking to extend the distance from their router by repeating the signal. Great for apartment complexes and dorm rooms where the signal might not be so great or for offices in the back of the house that are too far away from the router.

If you’re in a house where your political views (especially this election year) and thus taste in talk show hosts are as far apart as you being a vegetarian and him being a cattle rancher, a pillow speaker could be your best investment ever. We can’t help you with your differences in the kitchen, but this lovely little piece of equipment allows him to listen to his preferred stations in bed, and you don’t have to hear it. It also works great for audio books.

Still not sure what to buy? A gift certificate allows for them to pick whatever they prefer.

If you need any help with a recommendation, please call us and we’d love to help you pick out the best gift for your loved one.

Tell us – what’s the best or worst Father’s Day or Graduation gift you’ve ever received?

 

What’s So Great About a Pocket Radio?

Sometimes referred to as a transistor RAD-CCRADIO-CC-PCKTradio, a pocket radio is a small portable receiver that – you guessed it, can fit in a pocket. The capabilities and coverage will vary depending on the manufacturer and the price, but usually a pocket radio will receive the AM and FM bands at a minimum. Some models include more bands like NOAA Weather or Shortwave. Features might include built-in speaker, digital displays, clocks, sleep timers, and memory presets, while others are more basic with analog tuning and earphone operation only.  The transistor radio forged the way for today’s personal music players, proving that technology can be made smaller and designed for individual use.

One thing many people don’t realize is that size does matter when it comes to reception, especially on the AM band. Generally, we wouldn’t recommend a pocket radio when you’re trying to get a weak signal. There are some things that no amount of technology has been able to solve (yet) and one of those things is the radio waves as they relate to the ferrite antenna. This is the internal antenna that receives the AM signal. No matter how you dice it, the longer ferrite antennas will provide better AM reception. FM Reception can also be impacted by length, but in this case it’s the length of the telescopic whip antenna. Most pocket radios do not have a whip antenna, but the cable for your earphones or an FM wire antenna that plugs into the earphone jack can significantly improve FM Reception.

C. Crane has carried some form of pocket radio for over 20 years. Pocket radios become personal companions for many radio listeners; the simplicity and ease of use are often cited as reasons people own one. You will see them on delivery driver’s vehicle dashboards, with people at sporting events (so they can actually hear the play by play action of the radio announcer), or combined with noise-reducing headphones by gardeners and equipment operators. The most common usage seems to be folks out walking or going for a jog. A lesser known popular use of pocket radios is as a bedtime radio. Many people like the auto shutoff or sleep timer features often found on pocket radios. This prevents the drain of batteries with the radio playing after they have fallen to sleep. Many people have sleep issues, so a pocket radio combined with a pillow speaker is the only thing that brings them relief.

It is certainly understandable why these radios continue to be a customer favorite given their ease of use, desirable features, versatility, and compact size.

Decide for Yourself

We would love to tell you all the reasons you might enjoy the CC Skywave Radio, but our customers are so much better at it.

skwyavetravel

Sorensen – Much better than anticipated
Pros: Everything about this little jewel is Pro. I have been using this for past 6 months and nothing has disappointed. I also use to check on aviation weather at local airport before I got to fly our aircraft. As an added bonus the tonal quality is amazing for such a small unit.

Cons: No Cons that I can think of.

Best Uses: Both music and spoken word. Also very good for NOAA weather.

M Mooney – Great Emergency / Travel Radio
This feature packed radio best satisfied my need for an emergency type radio. I live in hurricane and tornado country, so the weather band was a must have feature during power outages. My Skywave arrived the same day as an expensive pair of Marshall earbuds. Although not perfect, the CCrane earbuds trounced the Marshalls in every way. Quality FM stations will have your toes tapping. Problem FM stations aren’t magically transformed into powerhouses…. …Skywave does a fine job with any reasonable signal. I can imagine others would like an external antenna connection. That’s fair, but this IS a pocket radio and not a full feature desktop entertainment system. About the only major item on my wish list for the Skywave would a rubberized Otterbox like case for the inevitable drops that will occur. Overall I am exceptionally pleased with this radio. It easily covers all of my must have features in a well thought out, compact package. I believe it would be the perfect answer for many people.

Pros: Size, Weather Band, Battery Strength Indicator, Signal Strength Indicator, Ability to charge [rechargeable] batteries, Handy Keyboard Lock, Quality Earbuds, Time and Radio Presets retained on battery change

Cons: Average Sensitivity, No AC Adapter, No Batteries, Built-in speaker sound

Best Uses: Beach, Boating, Hunting, Camping, Emergency, Natural Disaster

S Lowry – The Greatest
Went on the wait list for this one to be shipped as soon as available. I’ve had several Grundigs, Kaitos and others, but the Skywave trumps all, especially with the aviation band, battery efficiency, panel layout and more. Look at the other reviews: there are a lot of good reasons for so many 5 stars.

C Stacks – Better then expected! A big smile on my face.
6:30 PM yesterday attached 20 ft long wire and counted 58 readable shortwave stations. Also able to rcv aircraft from several airports with the radio’s antenna. C CRANE please make a Sky II that covers the HF ham frequencies!!!!

Pros: Great Reception on all bands, Does not drift, Speaker does a great job even better with head phones

Cons: None except ssb is missing

Best Uses: With me all the time

H Alexander – The Ultimate Travel Radio
After putting this radio through all the paces, I am convinced that it’s quite possibly the ultimate travel radio! I am particularly impressed with the performance of the AM and SW bands. And I really appreciate the precision offered with the thumbwheel volume control, as well. Thanks for another great product, my 6th purchase from CCrane. I have yet to be disappointed!

Sharonon – Worth it.
Now my father-in-law can listen to his baseball games inside and not have to drive to a clearing on the mountain’s side. Great buy and great price.

C Desmaraison – Buy this radio.
Reception is outstanding. I am in MA and am able to receive Beijing Radio International, Radio Romania and Radio Havana Cuba just to mention a few. I also use their 23 foot clip-on wire antenna to increase reception. Radio is easy use and has many useful features. C.Crane customer service is also outstanding. Buy this radio.

There you have it folks, a wide variety of different users and uses. If you aren’t sure if this is the right radio, contact us and we’d be happy to help you determine which radio is best for you. A good starting point is our article on “Buying the Right Radio for You”. Don’t forget, we offer a no risk 60 day money back guarantee on all of our radios!

Tailgate Time

Radio is Community - Tailgate TimeIt’s a time when fans, friends and alumni get together to celebrate (whether that celebration is for the tailgating, the food or the football doesn’t really matter). They wear their team’s colors, often paint their faces and bring signs and cheer as loudly as possible to root on their team. In some areas this is “religion”. There are places like Auburn where people actually have settings using fine china, where several generations of family attend and even paint vehicles in the team colors. The rivalries are fierce and the camaraderie is strong. What you do for a living and who you voted for aren’t important, the only thing that matters is which team you’re there to support.

Radio is a community of its own and shares some of the same characteristics as these fans: a diverse, eclectic blend of people coming from all different backgrounds for a common reason. Committed to your favorite hosts, enough so to band together and buy advertising, to buy special equipment, to record shows so you can listen later, or pay for subscriptions so you have access on-demand. Passionate about the topics at hand and supportive of this forum for communication, education and entertainment.

Another way, radio supports community is by being local. It is local radio that carries the hometown sports – whether high school or college. For instance; it’s homecoming here in Fortuna, California and we’re a community that rallies around our kids and our local sports broadcasters are there for us allowing those who can’t make it to the games to listen into the play by play.

So grab your radio, put on your face paint, sport those team colors, and show up for your community, whether it’s football, radio or both!

Happy Labor Day

Labor DayLabor Day weekend is upon us, it’s the symbolic end of summer and the last three-day weekend for a while. We predict about a million barbeque grills will be lit this weekend with tunes blaring and friends gathering in celebration that fall will be here soon and summer is coming to an end.

While Labor Day Weekend might mean the unfortunate end of summer, it also means it’s almost time for football to come back! The beginning of the NFL and College football seasons means Sunday football, NFL Ticket, Fantasy Leagues and national radio coverage! How will you be tuning in?

Not only can you receive coverage from your local broadcaster but there are several radio broadcasters and podcasters interviewing various former players and current coaches on the field. Here are a few of our top picks:

 

The CC Radio 2E has exceptional voice clarity for talk radio and the speaker sounds as if the broadcasters are in the same room.

Internet Radio also offers a flurry of NFL highlights and updates. The CC WiFi 2 receives TuneIn and offers a plethora of free stations to pick up NFL info. Here are just a few:
http://tunein.com/radio/NFL-c1736013/
http://tunein.com/radio/Football-g312/

Worried you’ll miss out listening to your favorite broadcaster while at the big game? Fear not, the CC Pocket Radio makes for a compact travel companion! It receives great reception and is so small it will fit in any pocket or carry pouch. Tune in to your favorite broadcaster while sitting live at the big game!

Whatever you decide to do this Labor Day Weekend, you absolutely deserve a day off to recognize your effort and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Before getting back to the grindstone on Tuesday, enjoy that last big barbecue, tunes from the music box and the last final weekend of your summer. Happy Labor Day from the C. Crane Family!

The Madness Begins

Basketball Tournament BracketThis past Sunday was “Selection Sunday” which, for college basketball fans everywhere, means the madness is beginning. Whether you are an avid college basketball fan or you only watch/listen during this NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament time, the craziness that surrounds it is hard to ignore.

To say that people feel strongly about their favorite (or least favorite) college basketball team would be an understatement. This month ESPN has been running their 30 for 30 documentaries on legendary college basketball teams. One documentary was on the Michigan Fab 5 and another is on Duke’s team that had Christian Laettner and Grant Hill. In watching these you see that sales for Michigan merchandise during the Fab 5 went from something like 2 million to 10 million dollars. Someone actually wrote a book called “Duke sucks” because of how much they despise Christian Laettner and Duke basketball. This basketball fever is intense.

No matter if it’s because it’s your alma mater, it’s your family’s team or you just fell in love with the school, people just can’t get enough and the rivalries run deep. I was once told the reason people are so interested in basketball at this time of year is you just never know what’s going to happen. Single elimination. The upsets. The overtimes. The suspense. This is one of the most watched and wagered on annual sporting events in the United States and its continually growing. The crazy things are the odds. Check out this article on the odds of a perfect bracket – mind blowing but doesn’t stop us from filling one out!

If you’re like many of us and can’t watch because you work and your boss wouldn’t be thrilled at the prospect of you using all the company bandwidth on watching college basketball (not to mention the work you’re not doing….), you can still listen on the radio. It appears Westwood One has most of the rights to the actual games. ESPN Radio has a lot of coverage about the tournament but we didn’t find any games. I’m sure the local stations for the various participating (68) teams will have coverage of their games so find a bracket to see if your team is playing (better yet, fill one out in the many, many bracket contests and maybe win something :)) and tune in to listen.

In the spirit of competition, we are hosting our own competition. Tell us your favorite sports radio moment (it doesn’t have to be basketball related) and you’ll be entered to win a CC Pocket Radio. The more detail the better. Limited to one entry per person. The winner will be announced April 7th.

Also if you find any additional resources for listening to the games – let us know.