We have a Degen 1103 ($65 on Ebay) and used it last winter in the Exumas
. Some days we could get Chris Parker loud and clear without even using the 30-foot wire antenna -- just the 3-foot telescoping metal antenna. Other days, even with the extra wire antenna, we couldn't hear him at all, or only faintly.
We wound up relying more on GRIBs and NWS text forecasts sent to our email
by Saildocs, via an old Iridium
. And when in the vicinity of Highborne Cay you can get weather on VHF
, ditto for Staniel and George Town.