Request (Technisat Internet Radio 1 IR-1 and Lenco IR-1650)

If you happen to have the Technisat InternetRadio 1 aka IR-1 or a Lenco IR-1650 and you want to help, please contact me through email at
Aim: upgrade the devices to 10.000+ stations and full freedom in adding your own..

In its early days the Lenco IR-1650 was supported through the Radioslots portal. The manufacturer used a poor ripoff of the Receiva Internet radio boards.
The Radioslots portal vanished, so did the manufacturer. I have contacted Lenco and offered them a free replacement service. They did not want to fix their radios. They only offered to take back my IR-1650 as it still had warranty on it. Other owners of this radio had less luck, they are stuck with a dead device. My only advice is: never buy a Lenco device. Too bad as this could have been resolved in a matter of hours…

How to deteremine your Penbex Radio model

In order to pick the right firmware upgrade file you need to know what firmware you currently have.
Turn on your radio and go to the setup screen. Select [Information] and scroll down to the OS Version.
The OS Version is your full model name.

My Neon N-1004 displays: “KW-1004- build 09/12/08-1744” which means that it is using the standard KW-1004 firmware branch. The Centrios identifies as: “KW-1315117- build 09/12/08-1746”. The IPMicro: “KW-1004-IPMICRO- build 09/12/08-1744” which is a slightly modified KW-1004 version. So far I have not really found a reason why there are so many different firmware versions. It might have something to do with localization. I have firmware for most of the Penbex radios. So if you have a model that is not listed yet on this page or on the forum, let me know.

Personal favorites and an update

I have figured out an easy way to get your personal favorites on the device. The favorites are stored at the server and are available through the station list. The server gives you the option to manage your favorites (add/delete/move/copy from the country lists,  etc.) and there should not be any real limitation to the number of stations in your favorites list. The VTuner service uses a somewhat similar concept.

Setting up the server is progressing well. Some of you have checked it out already. Keep in mind that I am working on it at times and things might suddenly change. Right now I am creating import and export functions so that the database at the server is actually connected to the lists that the radio uses.

Regarding the firmware, I hope to release firmwares that will use the new server in the next couple of days, it depends a bit on how much time I have to work on it.

Soon more..

PCB and update

Here is the other side of the PCB. Not much there, mainly resistors and the connectors to the mainboard. 



I will soon have some news on JTAG, alternative firmware, alternative server, support for other USB Wifi Dongles etc. Work in progress…

Alternative server test: Working!

Yesterday I setup an alternative server that replaces the Worldstation server. For now this server was hosted on a pc within my local network. The radio found the server without any problems and loaded the “Worldstation” lists as usual. It did not have a clue about the fact that the lists were hosted at an alternative location. Of course I changed some of the lists to include my personal favorite stations that are not on the Penbex server (including vtuner links). The radio had no problem with playing any of the channels including the additional ones from the lists that I hosted. I discovered that the additional stations that I added to the radio’s internal “favorites” list also stayed available after switching back to the official Worldstation server. From this test we learn that it is possible to have stations in favorites that are not on the Penbex server and that we can use alternative servers. Good news I think.

For the local server I used a simple Windows XP notebook with additionally SimpleDNS and WampServer software. I used Wireshark to check the network traffic and verify the requests from the radio. The only change I had to make on the radio was the DNS server address in the network settings menu. I simply changed this to point to my local server.

It appears that the “favorites” list is saved inside the Radio’s memory. Possibly in the small 24c64 EEPROM which for sure limits the number of possible entries. The other “Worldstation” lists are loaded from the server each time you navigate through these lists. The structure of these lists is fairly simple and it is possible to extend them. You could for example add a “My Favorites” section to the regions selection screen. You can even sort this list..

What’s next? That depends a bit on who is willing to invest time in this. I think we are just at the beginning of exploring the hardware and I don’t have time to setup a public server right now. However, with some combined forces we could do that. It might even be possible to detect the origin (mac address?) of the device and based on that add a personal favorites section for all users.



I have uploaded the generic “KW-1004” firmware version and You can get them here. The upgrade procedure is simple. Just download the archive, extract its contents and put the .upg file on a USB stick. Go to “upgrade firmware” in the radio’ s menu, select USB and follow the on screen messages. As far as I know adds WPA2 support, auto firmware updating (which I rather disable) and improved browsing of uPNP devices (The Maxtor Shared Storage, Zyxel NSA220 and IOMega Storecenter seem to be recognized and working correctly). The older firmware is there just to have it, it is not required and you should not load it unless you want to test/play. I do not know yet if there is any safety net or what happens if you cut power during an upgrade. However, I have done the upgrade a few times and it seems to be fine. I have found the firmwares for most of the devices. I do not know yet why there are different firmwares for the “generic” 1004 models, the IPMicro and the Akira. Maybe just differences in language support. If there is an interest in the firmwares for other models I will make them available too. The “information” option in the setup menu should tell you what firmware is on your device. Note that on your radio you can also choose to upgrade the firmware directly “from the Internet”. I also have put the RomFS file (you should be able to mount that directly under linux) and the extracted contents here. The bin directory inside this RomFS has a number of bFLT files that I decompressed. You can grab the decompressed files here.