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Monday, 17 July 2017

RTL-SDR revisited

As you are no doubt aware, I own one of the RTL-SDR sticks that do the rounds on the likes of eBay and Amazon, a cheap DVB-T stick that can be used as a software defined radio, trouble is it has flaws, those being that it can drift off frequency as it heats up and that it is prone to pick up of interference, particularly WFM from Band II, the FM broadcasting band, and methods of alleviating these problems do exists, my current stick is submerged in cooking oil in a golden syrup tin (though the sealant on all the connectors and the rest of the tin has been eaten away by the oil and it has escaped, so it is wrapped in a plastic bag), this did work well to keep the heat down and the noise contained, as some of it was conducted along the USB cable it was modified for the feed inside the can.

Though that stick is still very much usable, once salvaged from the tin and degreased, I have purchased an improved one by American company NooElec. they have taken the basic design and improved on it, replacing components, and removing redundant components, even going as far as to replace the MCX antenna port with an SMA (which I have a couple of adaptors for to allow use of any external antenna I see fit), the unit I have ordered is in a much different case than the original one I bought, and comes with a selection of antennas for different jobs, and as it is the same chips for USB and tuning as my existing stick it should work in a sense with the software that works with the old one with little change.

I partly bought this to use as a reliable scanner receiver, as I knew my existing RTL-SDR was not cut out for the job, and I hope to have it by the end of this week and will be doing a couple of YouTube videos on the stick all being well.

I'll see what happens with this

73 de 2E0EIJ

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