Hi all, a slightly updated second edition of my SDR book, "SDR, Software Defined Radio, for amateur radio operators and shortwave listeners" is now available from the RSGB store. There is a discount for RSGB members. The book is also still available in printed form or Kindle from Amazon.
73 de Andrew ZL3DWPost is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
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I had big problems getting VAC1 Direct I/Q - Output to VAC to work. Others on the Apache Labs forum have had similar problems. You always get "Invalid Sample Rate" and "Invalid Stream pointer" errors when you try to turn on VAC1 Direct IQ..
Finally after some months, I have the answer and now I can send a full 48 kHz of IQ bandwidth to MRP-40. It will work with CW Skimmer as well.
1. The Buffer Size and Sample Rate on the Audio : VAC1 tab must be set the same as the Buffer Size and Sample Rate on the Audio : Primary tab.
2. That means that you can not set a sample rate of >192000 on the Audio : Primary tab.
3. You can set the Buffer Size and Sample Rate on the Audio : VAC1 tab but output is unreliable.
4. No matter what the settings are in PowerSDR the IQ output is always 48 kHz wide. This is hard coded. So set your third party application for a 48 kHz IQ signal.Post is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
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I have just negotiated a deal with the RSGB who plan to sell my SDR book on their RSGB Store website. Hopefully it will be available before Christmas. This will enable RSGB members to purchase the book with a 15% members discount. It will continue to be available from Amazon worldwide as well.
Amazon is about to launch in Australia, so I assume that it will be available from there as well. The Kindle version is already listed on Amazon.com.au.Post is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
PowerSDR mRX v3.4.5 has been released. Apparently I can't upload the release notes as 900kB, so here is an excerpt.
PowerSDR/OpenHPSDR mRX PS v3.4.5 (20 November 2017)
• Bug fix for .NET unhandled exception error when starting without radio online.
PowerSDR/OpenHPSDR mRX PS v3.4.4 (19 November 2017)
• Added MIDI CAT support for the Behringer CMD Studio 2a
• Added support for the ANAN-7000DLE transceiver
• Added feature to select between receive or transmit antenna for receiving
• Use of seperate TX Profiles for various modes.
o LSB, USB, DSB, CWL, CWU, SPEC, & DRM
o AM & SAM
o DIGL & DIGU
• PRO Latency feature added.
Improved CTUN mode operation:
A "CTUN Scroll" check box has been added to the Setup-General-Options tab. When this box is checked:
• The display scrolls when the VFO gets near the display edges allowing tuning to continue. The VFO cursor stays near the scrolling edge.
• Frequency changes greater than 500kHz cause a re-centering (e.g. when recalling a memory from a far removed frequency) When this box is unchecked:
• CTUN behaves as before these CTUN enhancements - VFO tuning stops at the receiver bandwidth edges (e.g. 192kHz edges)
Forcing CTUN to turn OFF when selecting Split or MultiRX has been eliminated.
MIDI controller support
MIDI controller mapping now supports the Behringer CMD Studio 2a. In fact, it may work with all the Behringer controllers now, barring unforseen additional behavior of specific controllers that differs from the currently supported ones (the CMD PL-1, CMD Micro, and now CMD Studio 2a).
Fixed MIDI/CAT VFO manipulations (A>B, B>A, A<> so they behave exactly like the corresponding buttons on the console. Previously the CAT versions of these commands only changed frequency and nothing else associated with the VFO (e.g. mode).
Added handling of variable codes coming from wheels in the Hercules Compact controller; it was resulting in digital "backlash."
MIDI VFO sensitivity control:
VFO knob sensitivity (speed) can now be adjusted. In the past, as you turned a MIDI knob (usually one of the big jog wheels), you got one tune step per MIDI wheel or knob MIDI message output. Now you can change the wheel sensitivity by specifying the number of MIDI updates required to produce one frequency step.
Two new up/down controls have been added to the Setup/CAT Control tab next to the "Configure MIDI" button, labeled as ""MIDI Wheel updates/step. These controls set the minimum and maximum number of MIDI wheel updates per frequency step (i.e. maximum and minimum wheel sensitivity, respectively). These two values can then be alternated between using a new MIDI command and mapping as below.
The following three functions and mappings are new:
1. "Increase wheel rotation per VFO tune step" - increments the number of wheel updates per tuning step, mappable to a button, staring at 1 and increasing by factors of 2 up to a maximum of 32.
2. "Decrease wheel rotation per VFO tune step" - decreases the number of wheel updates per tuning step, mappable to a button, starting at the current setting and decreasing by a factor of 2 down to a minimum of 1.
3. "VFO Wheel Sensitivity High/Low Toggle" - toggles between the high and low values set in MIDI setup, mappable to a button
The typical use for "Toggle" would be as a high/low tuning sensitivity (speed) control. You can zip across a band at high speed, then switch to low speed as you get close to a signal of interest.
All of these settings, combined with the existing Tune Step MIDI settings, should allow a much greater range of tuning "feel" and control than before. Note that the Behringer controllers' jog wheels that enable variable tuning rates continue to work as before and now can be further tailored using these settings.
Disabled audio processing in digital modes CFC is now disabled automatically when switching to DIGL or DIGU. This operates in the same way the disabling of other processing functions, such as TX EQ, operates now, in that it simply disables the function in the currently selected transmit profile to ensure that CFC isn't used in digital modes. Note: A better way to handle this, as some are already doing, is to create a transmit profile for digital modes and switch to it before selecting a digital mode.
• Support added for the ANAN-7000DLE transceiver. Packet ReOrdering (PRO Latency) feature to re-sequence out of order packets.
• Added a feature to choose between receive antenna and transmit antenna.
• Added the ability to block a receive antenna from being used as a transmit antenna for antenna ports 2 and 3.
• Fixed bug that caused PowerSDR to crash if console closed after Setup form was closed.
• Modified VHF band stacks to be 5-deep like the others.
• Eliminated most display scale shifting when going between transmit and receive.
• Fixed a bug causing a crash when zoomed in past the point where the passband fits in the display. Fixed bugs in split VFO operation when RX2 is on.
• Fixed a bug resulting in incorrect vertical display scale in transmit under certain circumstances.
PowerSDR/OpenHPSDR mRX PS v3.4.3 (not released)
This release can be downloaded from the TAPR Github website. https://github.com/TAPR/OpenHPSDR-PowerSDR/releaseshttps://github.com/TAPR/OpenHPSDR-PowerSDR/releasesPost is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
I just bought an SDRplay RSP2 receiver. It seemed to have good specs for the price. I already had a FunCUBE Pro Plus which covers roughly the same spectrum but it can only support a 96 kHz wide panadapter, which is a bother on VHF. The SDRplay RSP2 can be set for 500kHz, 1, 2, 3 ,4, 6, 7, 8, or 10 MHz (10MHz is at a lower bit rate at least on SDRconsole). This is neat because you can watch the whole of the 2m ham band or the 70cm band. (Not both at once).
The native software for the RSP2 is SDRuno which apparently was built from Studio1. It is OK, but a bit odd. For example each receiver has buttons for the HF bands and 2m, but not 6m. The buttons on the subsequent receivers don't work at all if RX0 is set to a VHF or UHF frequency. Each receiver can have its own panadapter and audio panadapter so you end up with lots of windows and it can be rather confusing working out which receiver relates to which panadapter. Having a separate panadapter for each receiver is pretty pointless since each receiver must be inside the maximum 10Mhz of bandwidth. Although you can have panadapters zoomed in to show smaller sections of the 10MHz spectrum available. Personally I would rather have all of the receivers displayed on a single panadapter. The HF band buttons only really work on RX0 and even then they are extremely annoying. I would have expected that pressing the button would switch the receiver so that the panadapter showed the band of interest... but it doesn't. If for example you have the sample rate set for a 6 MHz bandwidth and you press the 20m button, the receiver sets the current cursor position to 14.0 MHz. If the cursor happens to be at the center of the panadapter you get 11.5 MHz to 16.5 MHz on the panadapter. The memories work exactly the same way. If for example you have 5 repeaters setup as memories, each time you click on one the panadapter shifts and you lose visibility of the other repeaters. This really bugs me. The SDRconsole memory management is 1000 times better. Yeah I know you can lock the Local Oscillator, but it is still clunky.
Everything you look at on UHF or VHF is in a band. Aircraft band, Marine band, 70cm ham band etc. When you click on a band memory (s1b file). It should set the panadapter to show the band of interest or at least as much of it as possible. If the band is wider than 10 MHz, you could always save separate high and low band s1b files. Then when you click on a saved memory the panadapter should stay fixed and the cursor (receiver) should jump to the channel that you want to listen to. the developer needs to exploit the advantage of having a wideband panadapter, instead of thinking of the radio as a single channel receiver. The software is actually pretty good and it works OK. The panadapter works better than the one on SDRconsole which is strange and unpredictable especially if you change bandwidth to a different sample rate. Just a teething problem I guess. SDRconsole is pre-beta so it is unfair to be critical.
SDRuno is really very good, but some things do bug me. My main gripes about SDRuno are.
1 the band buttons should make the panadapter display a band, not just jump to the bottom of the band.
2 the band store should remember the current panadapter settings and actually be a 'band store' not just a directory
3 Saving a workplace is great except the receiver frequencies are lost not recalled. On a program restart or change of workplace, all of the receivers pop up on the same frequency. So you have to go and set them all to the right channels again.
4 you cant set the bandwidth of a receiver without opening its audio spectrum display window.Post is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
I finally got SDR Console V3 to run on my PC. In the end I researched the 000007b error I was getting and the general consensus was to download a heap of dll files and bung them in the Windows System32 directory. I was not keen on this idea since everything else was working fine. I didn't want to end up crashing other programs. In the end I found a similar (not gaming focused website) and downloaded this file '0xc000007b_win10(x64).zip' Google it if you have the same problem that I did.
I was not brave enough to copy the files into my System32 and SysWOW64 directories, so I copied all of the dll files into the SDRConsole main directory. Working on the principle that the program will look there before looking at the system directories. That fixed the problem and everything is now working. I am a happy camper.
I have had SDRconsole freeze up a couple of times when changing to a different favourite. I do like the way the program remembers the panadapter settings and the four or five receivers as well. Super idea. Seems to be reasonably stable otherwise and it is pre-beta software so you cant expect it to be perfect yet. The favourites menu is SOOOOO much better than SDRUno which seems to have been written by somebody who does not understand that the radio is an SDR.Post is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
I bought the Behringer CMD Micro. It is smaller than the 2A and it fits nicely on my desk immediately in front of the keyboard. WOW what a neat addition to he shack! It works great. BIG thanks to Chris W2PA for writing the code and the documentation. I had trouble making the VFO wheels work and would have been stuck without Chris' website. The big wheels have a dual function for DJs. The trick is when you map them to the Midi scheme do not touch the top of the knob at all. very gently rock the edge of the knob so that PowerSDR reads the control as a low of 63 and a high of 65. (If it is reading 0-127 you touched the top of the knob and the control wont work). Once that is saved it all works brilliantly.
I recently changed VFO-A to the right side and VFO-B to the left side. It seems counter-intuitive but being right handed it means that I can control the main receiver frequency without reaching over to the left side. I switched the volume controls as well but left the other controls the same.
I see that my forum post got deleted so I have added the picture of how I mapped the Midi controls.
The console has 20 switches, 3 "wheels" (the Browse knob is a wheel), 5 slider controls and 2 knob controls. Some PowerSDR controls can only be mapped to a wheel and others to a knob.Post is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
This is a compilation of the release notes for PowerSDR mRX PS.
Sometimes it is nice to know when features were added, or when bugs were fixed. More importantly the notes often contain instructions on how to configure the new settings and the reason that changes were introduced. You may even find features that you didn't know about.
The notes are also a really good history of the results achieved from the thousands of hours that the volunteer coders put into making PowerSDR the excellent software package that it is. Remember you get the fruits of their labor absolutely free of charge.Post is under moderationStream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
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