An Update on the PantronX Titus II SDR
The PantronX Titus II is a yet-to-be-released portable Android tablet based SDR that we've been following since 2016. The device will feature a 100 kHz - 2 GHz tuning range, and software that focuses on HF digital DRM decoding, as well as DAB on VHF.
Thomas from the excellent SWLing blog got curious about the Titus II as he had not heard any updates from the team in a while, so he emailed them requesting an update. Mike from PantronX wrote the following reply:
As you might be aware, we have joined up with Fraunhofer to include their MMPlayer app standard on Titus–what a difference a professional decoder, for both analog, DRM(+), and DAB(+), makes! MMPlayer is full featured even including reliable one way file downloads with DRM.
We are attempting also to license HD to include on the app for North America, making a truly worldwide receiver. Some deficiencies in our version of Android have caused issues as well as MMPlayer. All of which have caused delays leading to some serious business decisions – as you can imagine. You are correct that broadcasters have made large orders that will be fulfilled first. There are units in the field testing and such and continuing resolution of the software issues.
One of the issues that folks seem to have a hard time understanding is that we can not just build a few hundred or even thousands of units. Our minimum run is 10,000pcs! To do that everything has to be 100% – including the software. We simply will not ship units that are not 100%. Titus works, MMPlayer works – its that last 5% that takes the most time to resolve. These facts preclude any incremental production attempts. All that being said, we are very hopeful that the first production run is ready by last quarter of this year.
Is it time for an update on the Titus 2? PantronX deserves credit for NOT releasing a buggy radio, but the company really needs to begin production by January of 2021.
I see they’re inviting Pre-Release orders, no hint of a price-point.
Earlier reviews suggest “below [US]$100″…?
I’d want to know where they’ll be made before ordering…
but if they can make $$ from such a well-featured radio
(and maybe lift the bar by including, eg:
+ Zello capability (for “Network Radio” ie, a community
of folks using 6+ Zello channels; ‘would need a mic.)
+ compatibility w/ existing external Bluetooth keyboards
so it can serve as a kid’s school computer
The sky’s the limit!
PS What do we know about the company
& its plans to manufacture these puppies?
I presume it’s based on GnuRadio… right?
(That should keep costs way down, ie,
much of the design’s been done, &
there’s little of no IP license fee to pay.
Ah the magic of Open Source designs!
There’s even a (defunct) Nuclear Reactor
company, who’s Open Sourced it design!)
In the USA and Canada, some medium wave stations have dropped the Ibiquity HD Rdio and reverted back to C-QUAM AM Stereo. Can the Titus II decode that, or can an APP be written to do that? Incidentally, we are now seeing kits for C-QUAM medium wave transmitters that operate under FCC Part #15 power levels. How do I know? Myself and a friend have such transmitters.
When would this product arrive in Argentina?
I have contacted TWR to ask if really the $150 donation for China raised at radiosfortheworld.com will allow a listener to receive a Titus II radio.
After a week i received the answer. I am not going to copy and past but briefly they said that that was the intent, however the production is delayed so they have just stopped collecting money for this project untill is ready.
Infact they are not mentioning anymore the Titus in the website.
Push ’em to add features that make the system a Kid’s Educational + Game computer (based on Android), so anyone who is given a radio gets more than a 1-way media box. Kids could, eg, get KhanAcademy.org (via an Android app), etc. as well as use Zello to meet folks around the world, practice a new language, etc.
It would be good if we could the real date of production, and of course the most important parameters : the price. Anyway, i’m I look forward to it this obviously curious product !
You can believe whatever they tell you but for me this story is not clear.
In the meantime TWR is rising money with $150 offers to donate this radio to China listeners.
rising —-> raising 😀
$150 buys SEVERAL existing/working (albeit smaller) AM FM SW Media-Player (from uSD card) & Voice-Recorder (for their own creations, talking letters to family+friends, etc.).
I’d want to see Evidence that TWR is bona fide (& actually delivering radios to people in need).
And… Their (stated) purpose is Recruiting new members in their faith community:
“…lead people from doubt to decision to discipleship”
This may be OK, but it may well -exclude- folks (who may also be needy),
but do Not wish to convert to their particular religion.
Oops! I forgot to mention the particular “existing / working” radio I had in mind.
+ Retekess V115 – “FM / AM / SW Radio Receiver Bass Sound MP3 Player + Recorder
Portable Radio w/ Sleep-Timer, TF card”(slot)
Lotsa vendors in app “AliExpress” sell it for ~AU$ 25 w/ Free Shipping to AU.
YMMV on price & shipping options, so pick the best deal offered to your area.
Read past buyers’ reviews. They seem to like it.
If that’s Not the one for you, maybe check out, eg, TecSun’s wide range of radios
(Lots of AliExpress vendors sell them.)
(TWR should do the same, IMO.)