Tagged: sdruno

Using the SDRuno EXTIO Edition with an RTL-SDR and other SDRs

Over on YouTube Mike from the SDRplay team has created a tutorial video that shows how to use the SDRuno EXTIO edition. SDRuno is the official software of the SDRplay line of products and can be freely downloaded from the SDRplay website. The EXTIO edition allows other non-SDRplay SDR units to freely be used with SDRuno. The only restrictions are that the maximum bandwidth is artificially restricted to 2.5 MHz and some DSP filters are missing.

In the video Mike shows how to set up the SDRuno workspace to work with an RTL-SDR dongle and demos reception of some signals. Note that the EXTIO dll file for the RTL-SDR mentioned in the video is the same one required for HDSDR, and can be downloaded from the dll table on the HDSDR website.

If you’re interested in more, Mike has a full SDRuno tutorial series available on the SDRplay YouTube channel which mostly focuses on usage with the SDRplay units, but could be applicable to the EXTIO version as well.

Mike’s SDRuno Tutorial Series

Mike Ladd, one of the top volunteer contributors of the SDRplay community was recently hired by SDRplay officially and has now been working on a fairly comprehensive SDRuno tutorial series over on the SDRplay YouTube channel. SDRuno is the official software for the SDRplay line of SDRs and is a slightly modified version of the ‘Studio1’ software which was previously acquired by SDRplay. SDRuno also supports the RTL-SDR.

SDRuno is a complex piece of software with many features and settings, so it’s great to see a comprehensive video tutorial like this. Mike’s tutorial series currently has 10 episodes, and discusses things like the basic layout and settings of SDRuno, using Virtual Audio Cable (VAC), noise reduction, memories, calibration, DSD, notch filters and FM broadcast with RDS. More videos are probably still on the way.

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

SDRUno Updated to Version 1.03

SDRUno, the official software for the SDRplay has recently been updated to version 1.03. SDRUno is the free SDRplay specific version of Studio1, and also supports other SDR’s like the RTL-SDR, with an artificial 1MHz bandwidth limit. The change log is shown below:

Bug Fixes

  • High DPI resolution issue.
  • Various minor bug fixes and typos

Updates

  • Reworked filter cutoffs
  • Separate out EXTIO functionality
  • RSP Ready indicator in Main Window/SETT/Input
  • Rename FM Stereo Noise Reduction button and slider to FMS-NR to avoid confusion with SNR (Signal Noise Ratio)
  • Improvements to tuner AGC scheme
  • Improvements to DC offset scheme
  • Removed unused buttons in SP1/SP2 windows
  • LO display in RSP advanced window and the SP1 window
  • Change defaults (LNA OFF / AGC ON)
  • Added RDS PTY support

sdruno_announcement

RTLSDR4Everyone Four New Posts: Janilab Preamp Review, Why Use a Preamp?, Small ADS-B Antennas Review, SDRUno User Guide

Akos from the RTLSDR4Everyone blog has recently posted three new articles. The first article reviews the Janilab LNA Preamp which has a frequency range of 1 MHz to 3 GHz and an adjustable gain. In the review he compares reception with and without the preamp at shortwave frequencies and at ADS-B frequencies. Finally he also compares it against the LNA4ALL and LNA4HF, and notes that they generally have better specs than the Janilab preamp, but the disadvantage is needing two to cover HF + VHF/UHF, meaning an increase in costs.

In his second post Akos explains when and why you should use a preamp. Basically he explains how the lower noise figure of the preamp can help improve SNR.

In his third post Akos does a review on small ADS-B antennas. These are small whip type antennas that are tuned for 1090 MHz. In his testing he found that a telescopic antenna gave significantly better results that the ADS-B whip, but recognizes that these are designed for pilots and light aircraft owners who need a small sturdy antenna.

Finally his fourth post he shows an updated beginners guide for SDRuno. SDRuno is the official software for the SDRplay RSP, but is compatible with the RTL-SDR.

The LNA4ALL and LNA4HF vs the Janilab Preamp
The LNA4ALL and LNA4HF vs the Janilab Preamp

SDR4Everyone: Getting Started with the RTL-SDR and SDRUno

Over on his sdr4everyone blog author Akos has uploaded a tutorial that shows how to set up the recently released SDRUno with the RTL-SDR. SDRuno is a spin-off of the (recently acquired by SDRplay) Studio1 software. Although designed and tailored for the SDRplay, SDRuno also supports any radio with an ExtIO interface available, such as the RTL-SDR. The one limitation is that the maximum bandwidth of radios other than the SDRplay is locked to 1 MHz at most.

Akos’ post shows where to download and add the required ExtIO file (it’s the same one used for HDSDR) and how to start the RTL-SDR in SDRuno, as well as a quick tutorial on changing some settings and tuning.

We note that the fact that you need to install the ExtIO dll file to the documents folder seems to be a bug in the latest version at the moment. In future updates they may fix this, and then the ExtIO dll will go back to needing to be added to the C:\Program Files (x86)\SDRplay\SDRuno folder, as it was in previous versions. We’ve also heard one or two reports of users stating that they needed to add in the libusb-1.0.dll file as well, but we can’t confirm if this is actually required as none of our test PC’s have needed it.

Also, a recent post on Nobu’s blog shows how to get rid of the center DC spike in SDRuno by adjusting the Channel Skew Calibration. The post is in Japanese, but the gist of it is that you just need to adjust the fine tuning DC offset slider in the Channel Skew Calibration settings. Nobu also points out that a handy shortcut to getting the ExtIO window to display is to simply press the ‘H’ key.

Setting up the RTL-SDR for use in SDRuno.
Setting up the RTL-SDR for use in SDRuno.

Testing out the SDRplay with SDRuno and Characterizing RF HF Filters

Over on YouTube user Mile Kokotov has uploaded a video showing him using the SDRplay on the recently released official software SDRuno. In the video he first shows reception of some HF signals, then goes on to show how he can characterize some HF filters using a noise source.

Mile also wrote in to use to expand on his video. We quote:

“SDRuno” is new specialized software for SDRplay – RSP1 receiver. Besides many others excellent features, the new one is 10 MHz spectrum span on the window screen. The 10 MHz frequency span you can use it for characterize the HF Band-pass, Low-pass, High-pass or Notch filters. All you need is one noise source (noise generator) which you can find on eBay for about 20 USD.

With addition of directional coupler (for another 20$ USD), you can using SDRplay and SDRuno for HF antenna analyzer, measuring SWR like poore-man`s HF Vector Network Analyzer!

An RF filter is an electrical circuit designed to have specific characteristics with respect to the transmission or attenuation of various frequencies that may be applied to it.

There are three general types of RF filters:

1. A high-pass filter (HPF) similarly has a cut-off frequency, above which there is little or no loss in transmission, but below which there is considerable attenuation. Its behavior is the opposite of that of the low-pass filter.

2. A low-pass filter (LPF) is one that will permit all frequencies below a specified one called the cut-off frequency to be transmitted with little or no loss, but that will attenuate all frequencies above the cut-off frequency.

3. A band-pass filter (BPF) is one that will transmit a selected band of frequencies with substantially no loss, but that will attenuate all frequencies either higher or lower than the desired band.

The Filter connected in the front end of the receiver can be very much useful and it can improve the reception of the weak signals rejecting all others unwanted signals that can produces interference, intermodulation and as a results, the weak signals can not be copied !

With bandpass filter for particular frequency band, Receiving weak signals on that band is much easier, without problems from out of band strong sugnals.

73,
Mile Kokotov

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.

www.sdrapplications.it

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

www.sdrplay.com

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.

sdruno_announcement