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Old 26 September 2014, 15:32   #1
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Software Defined Radio

I've been playing with an RTL2832 USB software defined radio that can be had for under a tenner via eBay etc., and some free display software (here). The radio covers 70 MHz to 1.7 GHz.

Changing the supplied aerial for a slightly better one I've picked up all sorts of signals from aircraft, from AIS and from marine VHF signals to name a few.

Cut me in half and it says 'geek' all they way through but its fascinating stuff for a bargain price...

(Their screenshot)

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Old 27 September 2014, 13:03   #2
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Interesting. Can this be made into an AIS receiver?
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Old 27 September 2014, 17:39   #3
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Certainly like to know more about the equipment you are using. Are you using a wide band antenna like a discone or one more tuned to a specific frequency and what is the specific tuner you are using as there is a bit of a choice on ebay?
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Old 28 September 2014, 06:09   #4
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The SDR is one of these.

First attempts with the supplied antenna (using the lid of a metal biscuit tin as a ground plane) were mediocre and a poor SNR.

Next effort was using an MCX adapter to the TV antenna: better, but still not brilliant (quelle surprise!)

An MCX to BNC adapter connected to a 4' whip antenna off an old boat is much better for the marine band (quelle surprise!).

A disc-cone is on the shopping list.

There are various bits of software for showing ADS-B positions, met sat images etc.,
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Old 28 September 2014, 07:40   #5
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Thanks Hugh, I'm pretty sure I've still got a discone I made years ago in my dad's loft. I've also got an old shortband yeasu receiver in the garage, but I like the idea of connecting a receiver to the computer.
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