Back in December 2016, Shaun Whitehead of ThumbNet sent me of their new rtlsdr-based N3 Nongles but I was too busy to do anything serious with SDR. Now that I got a 137 MHz turnstile antenna up for testing I had an obvious opportunity to try it with the weather satellites.
Some time ago I got a 137 MHz turnstile antenna from Jørn OZ6TA. We decided to build an automated NOAA weather satellite image receiver using a modern SDR device. He also had an Airspy he wasn’t using and so it became the SDR radio we were going to use for this.
Few days ago, I have been playing with CuteSDR on Linux and Mac and came to think, would this work on a Raspberry Pi? While there is nothing conceptually impossible about running CuteSDR on the Raspberry Pi 2, I often run into obstacles trying to port Qt application to embedded devices, so here are my notes about how to make it work.
Today I have spent some time trying the Funcube Dongle with Quisk SDR. The setup procedure was quite painless and the results very satisfactory: Using an Arrow II hand-held yagi connected directly to the FCD I could receive the HO-68 CW beacon with very good SNR.
It looks like Moe Wheatley, AE4JY, is working on a cross platform software defined radio receiver intended for SDR hardware from RFSPACE. It is written using the Qt toolkit and will be available soon under an open source license with the purpose of providing an SDR interface program example for other developers. It is still very early and no code has been released yet, but you can watch this first demo video published few days ago and you can also join the CuteSDR Yahoo group if you are interested in following the project.
The way I achieved it was by configuring Fldigi to capture its data using the built-in microphone and turn the volume in Web SDR up until it was sufficient. The result was surprisingly good; of course partly because the Mac has relatively good sound hardware – at least when compared to some standard PC sound chip.
I prepared this video demonstrating how it works. You will hear and see many PSK-31 stations as well as some RTTY and other modes. Enjoy and have fun.
Watch in high resolution.