Archive for category Shortwave Listening

Yaesu FTDX-3000 Review

FTDX-3000I added the FTDX 3000 to my station in order to use it differently than most users will; my setup uses the transmit portion of the radio as usual, but utilizes the IF output on the rear deck to replace most of the receive capability with an SDR on the IF, and my SdrDx software working with the SDR. This works as planned, and so I am well satisfied with the radio in my installation. I get a far superior receive capability to any traditional radio on the market at any price including the very best from Yaesu, Kenwood and ICOM, *plus* the radio’s own capabilities as a medium quality second receiver in-band if I want that. I did my research, I got what I asked for, and I am happy as a clam. Also, confirmation bias, lol. But…
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On the use of Power Amplifiers in Amateur Radio

As many of you know, I’m a ham operator. I spend a lot of time listening to the HF bands, not a whole lot transmitting, but I do listen. One of the things that tends to irritate me is when I hear some wag putting someone else down because they have a “little signal”, by which they mean 100 watts or so.
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New OSX and Windows version of SdrDx – 2.12p

SdrDx 2.12p adds support for the Andrus, FunCube Pro Plus and AFEDRI SDRs; It also provides various features and fixes. See the link to the changes document, below.


  Screen shot: https://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/8675326983/in/photostream/lightbox/
    Downloads: https://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
      Changes: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/changes212.html

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WLO RTTY News Feed Replaced with Weather

Sad news for RTTY SWLs, WLO’s newsfeed at 8473 kHz is gone, replaced with weather broadcasts. The weather broadcasts alternate between RTTY and SITORB, just as the news feed did, but that’s the end of the similarity.

Well, it was nice while it lasted. Sigh.

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New OSX and Windows version of SdrDx – 2.11

SdrDx 2.11 adds visible memory markers, an enhanced internal database, better panning window width by window width, a number of fixes and performance improvements, and additional documentation.


  Screen shot: https://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/8165852338/in/photostream/lightbox/
    Downloads: https://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
      Changes: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/changes211.html

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New OSX and Windows version of SdrDx – 2.10

SdrDx 2.10 adds support for pure audio SDRs such as the Softrock, as well as the ability to demodulate pure audio input from recordings and radios with IQ outputs.

Control of this type of SDR is implemented with an external program that catches TCP messages from SdrDx about frequency changes and forwards them to the audio SDR in whatever format it needs. A sample Python client is supplied that contains everything but the actual mechanism to talk to the specific SDR, which can be implemented as a stand-alond command line program.

2.10 also brings with it an optional new black user interface (BUI), new documentation, and RF waveform fill. The 50 MHz lower limit for the FunCUBE Dongle has been removed in order to accommodate the new FCD Plus, which extends reception into the HF region.


  Screen shot: https://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/7891402954/
    Downloads: https://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
      Changes: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/changes210.html

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VFO Suite 1.01 for OSX and Windows

VFO Suite is a TCP client for SdrDx. It works with both the RFSPACE SDRs and the FUNcube. Or both. It provides 26 distinct, radio-style VFOs that track and maintain frequency and display parameters so you can go from band to band (or favorite spot to where-ever) without losing where you were, the adjustments you made for noise levels, and so on. Designed with larger (or multiple) monitors in mind. Enjoy!

Feedback encouraged: If you want features, mods or fixes, please don’t depend on my mind reading abilities. They seem to be somewhat undependable. :)

Screen shot: https://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/7502244882/
Downloads: https://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
Changes: https://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/vchanges101.html

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New OSX and Windows version of SdrDx – 2.07

SdrDx 2.07 is an update that introduces external control and communications. First up we have UDP (networked) remote control and monitoring. This allows external applications anywhere on your local network (LAN) to very easily synch up with SdrDx and control it, monitor it, or both. So far, we have two examples (both of which added support in just a few hours.)

The first is DX Toolbox, which will show a list of shortwave stations currently transmitting on the frequency you’re listening to, a great assist with SW dxing, as well as providing a host of propagation graphs, condition and status monitors.

The second is RumLog, which in addition to its powerful and now integrated one-button logging functions, now also serves as a co-ordinating point for keeping SdrDx and a ham transceiver identically tuned and in the same demodulator mode — they track each other live.

Two sample Python scripts, just a few lines each, are also provided to show exactly how to connect to SdrDx via UDP for your own custom applications. It’s so easy to do — just a few simple lines of Python, and you can code up alarm clocks, timed custom recording sessions, and more. Maybe it’s time to learn Python! (Or perl… or any one of many other programming languages. I just recommend Python because it is easy to learn, easy to use, and quite powerful.)

Considerable additional control is available in the UDP interface: I can assist anyone adding this kind of support via external applications.

Next is MIDI control surface support. I’ve chosen the BCR2000 control surface as the default surface. It offers 28 programmable pushbuttons and 32 programmable knobs and is very inexpensive. Also cool looking, festooned with LEDs indicating the current settings in SdrDx. These controls are set up with convenient defaults, but you can easily reprogram any item with just a couple of mouse clicks or keypresses. Running SdrDx with real knobs and buttons is downright *fun*. :)

There are some other goodies in 2.07 as well, but those are definitely the stars. Enjoy!

Screen shot: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fyngyrz/7360241130/
Downloads: http://fyngyrz.com/?p=915
Documentation: http://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/sitemap.html
Changes: http://fyngyrz.com/sdrdxdoc/changes207.html

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