SignalsEverywhere: Setting up the Retrogram Terminal Spectrum Analyzer for the PlutoSDR

This week on the SignalsEverywhere YouTube channel Sarah shows how to install the "Retrogram" software. This is a command line 'retro' styled spectrum analyzer designed to be used with the PlutoSDR. The software makes use of ASCII art to display the spectrum, meaning that a spectrum can be viewed directly in an SSH terminal, without any GUI. 

In the video Sarah goes through the steps to install the software before demonstrating it in action.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

7 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Joseph Corrigan

I am looking to start a project based around a Software Defined Radio device (e.g., Hack RF One) untethered to home base. I want to monitor Cellular signals here in the Northeast USA. If I can get any feedback on what I need to buy that would be great. E.g., the antenna, CPU, software., etc. I have a very portable cheap laptop in the Gateway (GWTC116-2 with an Intel Celeron(R) N4020 CPU at 1.10 GHz with 4GB RAM) at my disposal for a display/CPU but was not sure it will be suitable in processing such high frequency signals? I have watched many videos on the subject and read many blogs which gives me a sense processing cellular signals digitally on SDR devices does not require super fast CPU processing speeds. Is there any advantages in running it on a , e.g., Raspberry Pi, creating a self contained unit with its own display? RE powering it I have an inverter installed in my van where I will be running it from. I have had some trouble running some electronic laden tools (Fein Multi-purpose tool will not run) from my Power Drive 3000W inverter. I was told I should possibly try deep cycle batteries as base power for the inverter vs the standard truck (Ford Van) batteries in order to get cleaner more universally usable power. In short I am looking for a reliable cheap alternative to buying a costly portable spectrum analyzer. The granularity of the signal is not that important (for now), detecting just basic signal strength is fine. My price range is $1000-$1500 for this project. I recently purchased a Hakko FX951-66 soldering station and AmScope SM-4NTP-144 7X-45X to make it seems like I know what I am doing, so if soldering is needed I can give it a try. Thank you to the hacker community here, and elsewhere, for inspiration.

beta-tester

oh, it is running directly on the PlutoSDR ?! very interesting.
thank you for the link and information, i’ll give it a try soon.

beta-tester

oops, i forgot to push the reply button.

beta-tester

does a rtl_power like tool exist for the PlutoSDR (something like pluto_power)?

unixpunk

I got this from a friend, though, I do not have the source code: https://github.com/unixpunk/PlutoWeb/blob/master/plutoweb/overlay/bin/pow_pluto

unixpunk

To be clear, that binary is made to be executed directly on the PlutoSDR, not on a computer connected to it.

beta-tester

oh, it is running directly on the PlutoSDR ?! very interesting.
thank you for the link and information, i’ll give it a try soon.