Tagged: rsp

SDRuno Updated to V1.1: Now supports up to 2.4 MSPS for the RTL-SDR

SDRuno is the official software for the SDRplay RSP software defined radio. Recently they’ve released version 1.1 which contains various new features and bug fixes for the RSP. The SDRuno Cookbook by NN4F & KD2KOG has also accordingly be updated with information about the new features.

In addition they’ve also now increased the previous 0.96 MSPS sample rate limit which was enforced for all third party radios running via EXTIO drivers. The new limit is 2.5 MSPS (with 2.4 MSPS being the limit for the RTL-SDR). This is great news for RTL-SDR users as SDRuno for the RTL-SDR is now almost as functional as in other SDR software like SDR#, HDSDR and SDR-Console. The change log is pasted below:

Version 1.1 (11th November 2016)
Bug Fixes

  • 1.04.1 – fixed issue where highlighted filter wasn’t always the one loaded.
  • Waterfall in combo mode now flows the same direction as other modes

Updates (RSP only V1.1)

  • Tighter integration of RSP controls
  • Calibrated power measurement
  • Automatic S-Meter calibration
  • SNR meter
  • dBm scale for both SP1 and SP2 windows
  • Automatic frequency calibration
  • Support for IARU S-Meter standard
  • Zoom to VFO button in SP1 window
  • More improvements to AGC scheme
  • More improvements to DC offset compensation scheme
  • Reversed default mouse wheel scroll direction
  • Waterfall in combo mode direction can be reversed in the same way as other modes
  • Added extra frequency step sizes
  • LSB / USB filter presets back to being the same
  • USER filter preset renamed to DIGITAL
  • Support for both gain and gain reduction displays
  • Updated hardware driver – now reports as SDRplay device

Updates (EXTIO only V1.05)

  • maximum bandwidth changed to 2.5MHz
SDRuno Version 1.1 Running a RTL-SDR at 2.4 MSPS
SDRuno Version 1.1 Running a RTL-SDR at 2.4 MSPS

SDRplay Releases SDRuno: Free SDR Software for the RSP

The SDRplay is a $149 USD RX only software defined radio with a 12-bit ADC and up to 8 MHz of bandwidth that can tune from 10 kHz – 2 GHz. We consider it and it’s competitors the Airspy R2/Mini to be the best next step up from an RTL-SDR. See our previous post for a review comparing the Airspy and RSP.

One of the main drawbacks of the RSP has been that it does not have any official software associated with it. The closest competitor, the Airspy has the free official SDR# software, but the RSP relied only on third party programs like HDSDR and SDR-Console.

That is set to change today as SDRplay have announced the release of their SDRuno software, a free general purpose software defined radio program for the RSP. SDRuno is a customized version of the Studio1 software which SDRplay acquired the rights to last April. The full press release is quoted below:

SDRplay is pleased to announce the official release of SDRuno for the RSP. SDRuno is the new name for the RSP compatible version of Studio1, the rights to which we obtained and announced on 28th April. SDRuno contains native support for the SDRplay RSP and no extra plugins are required. Third party hardware can also be supported via the ExtIO interface, but with reduced functionality.

SDRuno provides a rugged and flexible, high performance SDR receiver capability and boasts some excellent features:

  • Multiple ‘Virtual Receivers’ which allow for simultaneous reception and demodulation of different types of signals within the same receiver bandwidth.
  • A selectivity filter with an ultimate rejection greater than 140 dB.
  • A unique distortion-free double stage AGC with fully adjustable parameters.
  • Multiple notch filters with BW adjustable down to 1 Hz, Notch Lock feature.
  • A unique synchronous AM mode with selectable/adjustable sidebands, dedicated PLL input filter, and selectable PLL time constants.
  • SNR (stereo noise reduction), featuring a proprietary noise reduction algorithm for stereo broadcast.
  • AFC for FM signals.
  • Calibration for receiver frequency errors.

Over time, we plan to add many more features to SDRuno to enhance the user’s experience of this very powerful piece of software. This software runs on Windows and we don’t yet know how easy it will be to migrate it to other platforms but this is something we will be investigating.

SDRuno will be made freely available to all current and future users of the RSP – to download a copy – simply go to http://www.sdrplay.com/windows.html

Our support for SDRuno in no way lessens our commitment to support HDSDR, SDR Console, Cubic SDR or ANY other software solution where the authors are willing to work with us. We fully recognise that many people have strong preferences for particular pieces of software and we do not want to do anything to undermine the options that people have to use their favoured software packages. Indeed, our view is quite the opposite. Our objective remains aim to have our hardware platforms support any and every SDR package out there. This of course may not be possible, but it is our philosophy and part of the ethos of our company.

About Studio 1:

Studio1 was developed in Italy by SDR Applications S.a.s. and has hundreds of happy customers around the world.

Studio 1 is known for its user friendly stylish GUI, CPU efficiency and advanced DSP capabilities, including features not available on other SDR software packages.


About SDRplay:

SDRplay limited is a UK company and consists of a small group of engineers with strong connections to the UK Wireless semiconductor industry. SDRplay announced its first product, the RSP1 in August 2014


Email: [email protected]

The software can be downloaded at http://www.sdrplay.com/windows.html. SDRuno comes with a full manual (pdf) and SDRplay fans and beta testers of SDRuno have also released a free SDRuno cookbook guide (pdf). From the cookbook it appears that SDRuno is also compatible with any SDR that supports ExtIO modules, like the RTL-SDR, although as noted in the press release functionality for other radios may be reduced. We look forward to being able to test the software out, and post a review within the next few days.


Shielding the SDRplay RSP with Copper Tape

The SDRplay RSP is a $149 USD software defined radio that many consider as a next step upgrade from the RTL-SDR. See our recent review for a comparison between the Airspy, SDRplay RSP and HackRF.

One problem with the SDRplay RSP is that it comes in an unshielded plastic enclosure. This means that strong interfering signals can pass through the enclosure and cause interference, making any filtering done on the antenna less effective. Recently Tom Naumovski wrote in to us to let us know that he has been experimenting with a simple fix that involves shielding his RSP with adhesive copper tape. (Tom carefully notes that doing this may void the warranty). Tom simply wraps the plastic enclosure with conductive copper tape, making sure that electrical contact is made between the copper shielding and RSP ground (e.g. making sure the RSP USB and SMA ports make electrical contact with the copper tape)

Copper tape shielding for the RSP.
Copper tape shielding for the RSP.

After shielding the RSP, Tom tested the shielding effectiveness by using his shielded RSP with no antenna connected to try and pick up an interfering tone transmitted by his HackRF SDR. He collected the results in a pdf file. The results clearly show that the shielded RSP does not pick up, or significantly reduces the power of the HackRF’s interfering tone.

If you want to try this yourself, Tom writes that this copper slug barrier tape found on eBay is the tape he used. Tom also points out the discussion on the Facebook SDRplay group thread he posted where other users have been using aluminium tape or alternative copper tape products.

We note that this same shielding technique can also be used to improve unshielded RTL-SDR dongles.