Tag Archives: Test

Airspy & SpyVerter: A serious love affair

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24 broadcast channels demodulated in parallel on shortwave – And Airspay and SpyVerter do need just a quarter of PC’s power!

For a much too long time, I had overlooked Airspy and the matching up-converter, namely SpyVerter. Found no explanation for this my blind spot. Now I am focusing my view onto this 10-bit SDR, covering 24 MHz to 1.800 MHz (just Airspy) plus 1 kHz to 60 MHz by help of Spyverter (+120 MHz). What I see from my first tests is a sensitive combo with a surprisingly lot of dynamic range, ending up in clear recpetion of up to a nearly 10 MHz wide band. This may be recorded and eventually played “as live”.

I am still tuning up and down the bands, trying this and that. It will end up in a test report in due time. For now, just have a look at the screenshot on top, showing 24 demodulators (Synchro-AM) in parallel, covering many broadcast channels in English from Asia. Have also a look at the fine print on the right at the bottom: this all needs just the quarter of the power of an able PC.

So, for now, just a a sentence at half-time: Don’t overlook this combo if you are in search for a “low cost, high perfomance SDR”. Yes – that’s exactly  the way Youssef and his team advertise it, but it is one of the rare cases where such a claim meets reality. Stay tuned.

Titan_SDR: New Approach in SDR, 40 Channels at once

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With it’s TitanSDR, Italy-based company Enablia has a new approach in SDRs: This receiver delivers up to 40 demodulated channels in different HF bands.

Applications are numerous, e.g. checking GMDSS channels in different maritime bands (see above), monitoring many ALE channels at once, control broadcasters with all their parallel frequencies etc.

This paper delivers on 26 pages and with 44 illustrations a detailed hands-on explanation of this new approach. It is enriched with some audio clips. It shows real-world example of receiving brodcast, amateur radio and utility stations. And it assists you in setting up a couple of decoders at once to monitor many channels in parallel.

Caveat: Embedded multimedia content will only work with the most recent version of Adobe`s Acrobat Reader. And you have to save the PDF on your device (hard disk/stick), to make use of these multi-media.

R&S EB500: The Über-SDR

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It’s easy to look into the future of hobby receivers: just look on what the professionals are doing! Since the days of AEG-Telefunken’s E-1800, I do follow this advice. Where are the professionals yet better, and what may the amateur world see at their receivers the coming years? Hence, I was glad to test Rohde & Schwarz’ EB500 for some weeks; plus their professional decoder GX430. Even more, as I visited them in Munich and talked with some of their engineers.

Alas, the resulting paper with 15 screenshots is written in German. But surely Google Translator will be your friend.

Wie sieht die Zukunft der Hobby-Empfänger aus? Diese Frage interessiert mich seit den frühen 1980er-Jahren, als ich den damaligen weltbesten Receiver testete, den E-1800 von AEG-Telefunken. In welchen Punkten sind die Profis besser, und was können wir in der Hobbypraxis damit anfangen? Schließlich: Was kommt auf uns in den nächsten Jahren zu? Deshalb freute es mich, den EB500 von Rohde & Schwarz für ein paar Wochen zum Test gehabt zu haben – zusammen mit dem Profi-Decoder GX430. Mehr noch, denn ich konnte einige der Entwickler in München sprechen und so auch einige Hintergründe erfahren.

Das deutschsprachige Manuskript des Tests: hier klicken.