Listening to TETRA Radio

Use your RTL-SDR in Linux to listen to TETRA, a digital trunked radio communications system that stands for “Terrestrial Trunked Radio”.

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Following Trunked Radio with Unitrunker

Follow trunked radio conversations with your RTL-SDR and a program called Unitrunker. Also decode digital communications like P25 and DMR using the Digital Speech Decoder (DSD+) software.

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Analyzing GSM with Airprobe/GR-GSM and Wireshark

The RTL-SDR software defined radio can be used to analyze cellular phone GSM signals, using Linux based tools GR-GSM (or Airprobe) and Wireshark.

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POCSAG Pager Decoding

Decode POCSAG pager messages with an RTL-SDR. Even in the modern day pagers are still popular with doctors, some fire and ambulance agencies and various service companies, as they tend to be more reliable and have greater coverage.

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RTL-SDR Direct Sampling Mode

The RTL-SDR software defined radio can be told to run in a mode called “direct sampling mode”, which with a small hardware mod allows the dongle to tune to the HF frequencies where ham radio and many other interesting signals are found. This means that no upconverter circuit is required.

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Receiving Meteor-M N2 LRPT Weather Satellite Images

The Meteor-M N2 is a polar orbiting Russian weather satellite. With an RTL-SDR an appropriate antenna, you can receive and decode its image downlink and download LRPT weather satellite images.

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List of SDRSharp Plugins

There are a number of SDRSharp plugins that extend its functionality. Here is a collection of all the plugins and download links that we know of.

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Review: Airspy vs. SDRplay RSP vs. HackRF

When people consider upgrading from the RTL-SDR, there are three mid priced software defined radios that come to most peoples minds: The Airspy, the SDRplay RSP and the HackRF.  These three are all in the price range of $150 to $300 USD. In this post we will review the three units and compare them against each other on various tests.

 

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Receiving Weather Balloon (Radiosonde) Data with RTL-SDR

Use your RTL-SDR to decode data from weather balloons (aka Radiosondes) that are launched twice daily by meteorological agencies all around the world.

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Receiving NOAA Weather Satellite Images

Everyday multiple NOAA weather satellites pass above you. Each NOAA weather satellite broadcasts an Automatic Picture Transmission (APT) signal, which contains a live weather image of your area. The RTL-SDR dongle combined with a good antenna, SDRSharp and a decoding program can be used to download and display these live images several times a day.

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SDRSharp Frequency Manager + Scanner v1.31 Update

The SDRSharp Frequency Manager + Scanner plugin has just been updated to version 1.31. Scanning is now extremely fast.

Scanner

  • All scanning now uses automatic tuning based on peak signal strength. Mode and squelch do not matter; only the signal strength is used for tuning.
  • A completely re-written scanning engine now provides higher performance than in previous versions.
    • On my equipment frequency range scans average a speed of 782 MHz scanned per second. When the wind is blowing right I have reached 918 MHz per second!
    • On my equipment group scans average a speed of 161 “channels” per second!
  • The new watchdog timer will force the scanner to resume scanning after a defined period of time.
  • A new Hold/Release button lets you pause the scanner to stay on an interesting frequency.
  • You can now mute the audio while scanning.
  • There is a new window for editing scanner configuration and for tuning its performance to suit your equipment.
  • The last selected scan group, defined scan frequency ranges, and all other scanner configuration settings are now stored as your defaults for use the next time you start SDR#.
  • A built-in benchmark utility tells you how fast the scanner is running on your equipment.

Frequency Manager

  • Tuning Helper is now disabled by default.

Browse Window

  • “Clear” buttons on the Filter by Group and Filter by Flagged/Locked dropdowns.

See the Reddit release thread here, and the Yahoo Groups release thread here.

Download from http://www.sdrsharpplugins.com.

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