The Racal RA1792 is a professional shortwave receiver which was used in military and marine services. It was built in the 80ís.
My RA1792 came from the coastguard in Scheveningen, Holland, but was luckily not used for daily service. It was used as a reference receiver for the radio technicians and was there for rarely in operation.
Even though some small parts had to be replaced, such as the display. This is the weak point of the RA1792 as they tend to leak over time.
The RA1792 has the common operating modes such as AM, USB, LSB, CW and FM. The bandwidth filters for AM are crystal filter with bandwidths of 16 kHz, 6kHz, 3.2 kHz, 1 kHz and 0.3 kHz. For USB is a Collins filter with 2.7 kHz and for LSB is a crystal filter of 2.7 kHz installed. As with many other professional receivers has the RA1792 no tools for noise elimination. Only in SSB can a band-pass tuning be activated.
But there for is the selectivity of the crystal filter and Collins filter prime quality. The selectivity is as good as receivers with DSP technology. Even the 6 kHz filter for AM is just a dream !
The receiver has 100 memories which can also store the operating mode and AGC.
One can ask why having a 14 kg heavy receiver on his desk. Very simple. First there is the audio quality which is great, even in AM or SSB mode. No other receiver which I had so far in my shack could come close to the audio quality and the sensitivity of the RA1792. Weak signals were still very understandable. Of course at some point has the RA1792 its limits as other receivers have band-pass tuning, notch-filter, noise blanker etc. which give them some advantages.
When no disturbing signals are present is the Racal definitely superior. The large-signal behavior is very good, which is normal for such a receiver. On my antennas (Fenu-Loop/HDLA3 & 35 m longwire, both 8 m above ground) could no clipping be observed.
A great receiver! Easy to operate and receiving quality is of top level. Something for purists.
Someone who wants to acquire such a receiver should be aware that these receivers have some years. With other words, the probability for defects cannot be ignored. There for is it absolute important to know where you acquire the receiver. Very often is the condition described as heaven on earth but you get a receiver with defects.