Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Need Help With Which version of Softrock To Build

Expand Messages
  • Dan Boardman
    I ve got a 6.3 kit and all the modules including a USB interconnect kit for an all band version OR I have RXTX Ensemble kits - I d like to get this/these built
    Message 1 of 5 , Dec 1, 2011
    • 0 Attachment
      I've got a 6.3 kit and all the modules including a USB interconnect kit
      for an all band version OR I have RXTX Ensemble kits - I'd like to get
      this/these built in the next several weeks to take out to Colorado to
      get my son interested in radio.

      Thoughts welcome

      Thanks much
      Dan - ki4yze
    • Preston Douglas
      Dan, You have asked which of the RXTX kits to build. I note that you want to bring one of these out West to show your son. Well, first you will need to know
      Message 2 of 5 , Dec 1, 2011
      • 0 Attachment
        Dan,

        You have asked which of the RXTX kits to build.  I note that you want to bring one of these out West to show your son.  Well, first you will need to know that you have to have a good, fast computer with a very good sound card available out there to work with either of these kits.  Have you given consideration to how you plan to travel with these radios?  While they are quite small themselves, they don't function without a computer and stereo sound card.  A laptop with its built-in sound card will generally give poor results, at best.  SSB will require either two sound cards or a high end card with dual stereo in/outs like the Delta 44 (a PCI plug-in card) or an equivalent high end USB sound card.  The five buck kind won't do.  If this is all redundant, and you already knew this, forgive me.  I don't mean to patronize.  

        I have both rigs.  I built the 6.3 first.  It is more complex by design, as it has plug-in band switching.  The whole PA, output transistors and all, changes with band change.  It also uses a dip switch to select one or two band segments within each band as a center frequency.  There was an optional outboard USB/I2C controller for full band coverage.  It also used a serial port for PTT.  The Ensemble is simpler, plus it has built-in the I2C controller so you can operate over the whole bands of the two or three adjacent bands you choose when you build it.  Plus, it uses a single USB line for both frequency control via USB-to-I2C and for PTT.  If you haven't yet built any RXTX Softrock yet, the Ensemble will be much simpler to get up and running.  See Robby's instruction site for how to build these kits and in particular for the Ensemble, he has very good suggestions for how to enclose your kit.  :  http://www.wb5rvz.com/sdr/ensemble/

        BTW, these are not simple to build and though I have had good success with both kits,  I later had a lot of trouble with a version of the 6.3 called the 6.3ng--let's not get into that!  So, don't rush the build just to have them ready to make the trip.

        You may also find that you need more time, not just to build, but to get the whole system running at home.  



        Preston Douglas WJ2V

        -----Original Message-----
        From: Dan Boardman <dan.boardman@...>
        To: softrock40 <softrock40@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Thu, Dec 1, 2011 5:45 am
        Subject: [softrock40] Need Help With Which version of Softrock To Build

         
        I've got a 6.3 kit and all the modules including a USB interconnect kit
        for an all band version OR I have RXTX Ensemble kits - I'd like to get
        this/these built in the next several weeks to take out to Colorado to
        get my son interested in radio.

        Thoughts welcome

        Thanks much
        Dan - ki4yze

      • Preston Douglas
        Oh, and before I hurt any feelings, the 6.3ng problems I had were of my own making. The kits are excellent! Preston Douglas WJ2V ... From: Preston Douglas
        Message 3 of 5 , Dec 1, 2011
        • 0 Attachment
          Oh, and before I hurt any feelings, the 6.3ng problems I had were of my own making.  The kits are excellent!

          Preston Douglas WJ2V

          -----Original Message-----
          From: Preston Douglas <pdouglas12@...>
          To: softrock40 <softrock40@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Thu, Dec 1, 2011 6:50 am
          Subject: Re: [softrock40] Need Help With Which version of Softrock To Build

           
          Dan,

          You have asked which of the RXTX kits to build.  I note that you want to bring one of these out West to show your son.  Well, first you will need to know that you have to have a good, fast computer with a very good sound card available out there to work with either of these kits.  Have you given consideration to how you plan to travel with these radios?  While they are quite small themselves, they don't function without a computer and stereo sound card.  A laptop with its built-in sound card will generally give poor results, at best.  SSB will require either two sound cards or a high end card with dual stereo in/outs like the Delta 44 (a PCI plug-in card) or an equivalent high end USB sound card.  The five buck kind won't do.  If this is all redundant, and you already knew this, forgive me.  I don't mean to patronize.  

          I have both rigs.  I built the 6.3 first.  It is more complex by design, as it has plug-in band switching.  The whole PA, output transistors and all, changes with band change.  It also uses a dip switch to select one or two band segments within each band as a center frequency.  There was an optional outboard USB/I2C controller for full band coverage.  It also used a serial port for PTT.  The Ensemble is simpler, plus it has built-in the I2C controller so you can operate over the whole bands of the two or three adjacent bands you choose when you build it.  Plus, it uses a single USB line for both frequency control via USB-to-I2C and for PTT.  If you haven't yet built any RXTX Softrock yet, the Ensemble will be much simpler to get up and running.  See Robby's instruction site for how to build these kits and in particular for the Ensemble, he has very good suggestions for how to enclose your kit.  :  http://www.wb5rvz.c om/sdr/ensemble/

          BTW, these are not simple to build and though I have had good success with both kits,  I later had a lot of trouble with a version of the 6.3 called the 6.3ng--let's not get into that!  So, don't rush the build just to have them ready to make the trip.

          You may also find that you need more time, not just to build, but to get the whole system running at home.  



          Preston Douglas WJ2V

          -----Original Message-----
          From: Dan Boardman <dan.boardman@...>
          To: softrock40 <softrock40@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Thu, Dec 1, 2011 5:45 am
          Subject: [softrock40] Need Help With Which version of Softrock To Build

           
          I've got a 6.3 kit and all the modules including a USB interconnect kit
          for an all band version OR I have RXTX Ensemble kits - I'd like to get
          this/these built in the next several weeks to take out to Colorado to
          get my son interested in radio.

          Thoughts welcome

          Thanks much
          Dan - ki4yze

        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.