Saturday, May 26, 2018

Add-ons for RSPduo received

Exactly ten days after ordering them (from separate sources) I've received two devices that will add much to the capability of my RSPduo.

For a total price of $23 - and that includes shipping - I now have wideband noise generator and an RF bridge. Together with the RSPduo, or any similar SDR receiver, these devices will allow characterization of filters, antennas and more.

As an antenna analyzer, they will allow measurement of return loss (which corresponds to SWR) of any antenna up to the frequency limit of the devices used. In the case of the RSPduos and RSP2 and the items shown here, this means 2 GHz. My FA-VA4 antenna analyzer has an upper limit of 100 MHz - with the new set-up, I'll now be able to measure my 2m and higher antennas.

I have an ADS-B antenna in my attic, along with a 1090 MHz bandpass filter ahead of the receiver. I'll be able to measure the antenna characteristics and those of the bandpass filter as well - and all for a low price.

Granted, these aren't the $$$ pieces of test gear used in professional applications but I do believe they will be more than adequate for applications by hams who may not have $25,000 for an Agilent network analyzer. I do have access to such an analyzer and S-parameter test set at work and will be making some comparisons (probably via YouTube videos) in the coming weeks.

One final note - a new spectrum analysis program is set to be released any time now for SDRPlay's SDR receivers. When available, it will be posted here.

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RF bridge
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Broadband noise source from BG7TBL, up to 3GHz
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Offered with & without a plexiglass housing, shown here with hardware
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Noise source in housing - a 10 minute job
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