RTL2832U based software defined radios

 

RTL2832U-based DVB-T dongles are now supported by Gqrx SDR, see this announcement!

 


You may have noticed the recent buzz on the internet about using cheap DVB-T dongles as software defined radio receivers. It all started on this mailing list when V4L/DVB kernel developer Antti Palosaari discovered that the ezcap EzTV 668 DVB-T/FM/DAB USB dongle, which is based on the RTL2832U chip, can be used to stream raw I/Q samples to the host computer. It is in fact the way the device supports FM and DAB reception; raw I/Q is sent to the host where the application does the demodulation.

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Funcube Dongle support now built into GNU Radio

Funcube Dongle close-up

I am happy to inform all users of the Funcube Dongle and GNU Radio, that the gr-fcd driver is now included in the GNU Radio source tree. You can read the announcement here.

This change will be available in the next GNU Radio release, which I think will be 3.5.3, however, if you pull the code from the GNU Radio git repository the changes are already in your tree. Before you upgrade please remove any earlier installations of gr-fcd to avoid conflicting versions of the library.

My repository on Github will no longer be maintained and any future development of gr-fcd will be done within the scope of the GNU Radio project. I hope this will ensure better integration, more maintainers, more testing and easier installation process.

Butternut HF2V on 10 and 15 meters

Two recordings I made during the 2011 CQ WW CW contest showing how well the Butternut HF2V receives on the 21 and 28 MHz bands. The videos were recorded using the Funcube Dongle equipped with the HF converter kit and my GNU Radio based software defined radio receiver, GQRX.

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Howto receive and decode NOAA APT images with the Funcube Dongle and Gqrx

NOAA-18 APT receptionOne of the great advantages of software defined radio receivers is that tuning receiver settings is a matter of adjusting software parameters. Gqrx is no different here and has optimal settings built in for weather satellite reception. This tutorial describes how to receive automatic picture transmissions (APT) from NOAA weather satellites using Gqrx SDR, record them to a WAV file, and finally decode the images using the free and open source Atpdec decoder. If you follow this guide you can end up with very nice results such as the one shown at the end.

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Gqrx on Mac OS X (almost)

Few weeks ago, or maybe a month or two – I don’t remember, I spent an afternoon trying to build gnuradio-core and gr-audio on Mac OS X without using any macports. It was a casual an undocumented attempt that resulted in a compilation failure. I wasn’t surprised because I made several mistakes along the way, so I just left it an moved on.

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AO-27 orbit 93036 received with Gqrx and Funcube Dongle

FM traffic and packet radio from the AO-27 amateur radio satellite. I made this recording last Saturday while testing the Gqrx software receiver using the cross yagis at OZ7SAT and the Funcube Dongle.

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Gqrx SDR receiver


Please visit the new Gqrx website. The information on this page is no longer updated!


Gqrx is a software defined radio receiver for Funcube Dongle (FCD), RTL2832U-based DVB-T devices (RTL-SDR), Universal Software Radio Peripherals (USRP) and Osmo SDR devices. It is powered by GNU Radio and the Qt GUI toolkit.

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First on the air tests of gqrx

With both the frequency controller and FFT plot widgets in place gqrx was ready for the first on the air tests. The video below shows the first reception of the AO-27 amateur radio satellite during orbit 92436 and 92437, using the Funcube Dongle receiver that I use for portable space communication.

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FFT plot and waterfall for gqrx

Following my success with integrating the frequency control widget from cutesdr into gqrx I have decided to try the same with the FFT plot and waterfall widget. This too seemed to be a single C++ class that might be easy to integrate into my experimental software receiver powered by GNU Radio and Qt GUI.

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