Airspy HF+ Discovery, Raspberry PI, SatNOGS - Need help

Peter,

What you installed is the Airspy HF+ driver library, which is necessary to use the Airspy HF+. But you also need the SoapySDR plugin for the Airspy HF+ available here: https://github.com/pothosware/SoapyAirspyHF/wiki

Hi Alex,

tried to install the plugin, but it did not finish as described…
Should have mentioned that I have the pre-build SatNOGS image for the RPI and I’m rather a Linux user than an Linux expert :wink:

pi@satnogs:~/SoapyAirspyHF/build $ cmake …
CMake Error at CMakeLists.txt:9 (find_package):
Could not find a package configuration file provided by “SoapySDR”
(requested version 0.4.0) with any of the following names:

SoapySDRConfig.cmake
soapysdr-config.cmake

Add the installation prefix of “SoapySDR” to CMAKE_PREFIX_PATH or set
“SoapySDR_DIR” to a directory containing one of the above files. If
“SoapySDR” provides a separate development package or SDK, be sure it has
been installed.

not sure what I need to do… :slightly_frowning_face:

73s Peter

Hi Peter,

I think you have to install the libsoapysdr-dev package which contains some files necessary to build SoapySDR plugins. Try this in the terminal

sudo apt install libsoapysdr-dev

Unfortunately, the AirspyHF plugin is not yet available in Debian, but perhaps it can be included in future SatNOGS image builds :slight_smile:

Alex

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Thank you Alex, you made my day (Monday) !! :slight_smile:

pi@satnogs:~/SoapyAirspyHF/build $ SoapySDRUtil --probe=“driver=airspyhf”
######################################################

Soapy SDR – the SDR abstraction library

######################################################

Probe device driver=airspyhf


– Device identification

driver=AirspyHF
hardware=AirspyHF
serial=dd52fc5d86cb39cc


– Peripheral summary

Channels: 1 Rx, 0 Tx
Timestamps: NO


– RX Channel 0

Full-duplex: YES
Supports AGC: YES
Stream formats: CF32, CS16, CS8, CU16, CU8
Native format: CF32 [full-scale=1]
Antennas: RX
Full gain range: [0, 54] dB
LNA gain range: [0, 6, 6] dB
RF gain range: [-48, 0, 6] dB
Full freq range: [0.009, 31], [60, 260] MHz
RF freq range: [0.009, 31], [60, 260] MHz
Sample rates: 0.768, 0.384, 0.256, 0.192 MSps

pi@satnogs:~/SoapyAirspyHF/build $

now I will adapt the SatNOGS configuration and will see how it works… I will report later…

73s Peter

… it works perflectly with the Airspy HF+ Discovery. Will continue to play with some Gain settings, but the results are already nice… it’s quite an improvement.

Sounds good, Peter. I think that for the Airspy HF+ it is best to leave it with automatic gain ON, as it has a rather high dynamic range already, but it will be interesting to see if it can be imnproved with manual gain settings.

Alex, do you have a hint for me how to enable AGC? I couldn’t figure out…
The rest of the settings do not make a big difference as you suggested…
However, I’m very satisfied with the HF+Discovery … I do see quite an improvement even over the Airspy R2… hope to have a few more running soon; but more about that later… :wink:

AGC ‘should’ be enabled as the default…
For quite some time the developer of the Airspy HF+ claimed that there would never be a need to turn off the AGC and control gains manually, since the receiver was that good. Of course, those controls eventually were added because there are situations on MF/HF where it does help, but for VHF observations I’d think the AGC should work fine.

I would expect the HF Discovery to be an excellent receiver for the 2m and weather sat bands. It’s a shame there isn’t something similar available for UHF!

I agree…
In fact, the “overall” gain setting seems to have no effect on the HF+ Discovery.
I tried values from 0 to 54 for the Full gain range: [0, 54] dB without any or little difference.
Interesting side node, the CubicSDR connected via SoapyRemote does not show a slider for this when AGC is disabled, only LNA and RF gain which seem to have no effect either.
Beside these limitations, I´m very impressed by the Airspy HF+ Discovery and would strongly recommend it to everyone who wants to listen on VHF… it’s like day and night…
73s Peter

Hi,

a few days ago I upgraded SatNOGS Network - Ground Station DB2OS-VHF-Omni to the latest release.

So far it works fine, but since the stanogs-client-ansible-202109022142 my Airspy HF+ Discovery ist behaving totally different.

I’m heaving massive interference on the VHF amateur satellite band (145.800 - 146.000) from FM repeater outputs in Germany, allocated below 145.800 MHz. I even see other strange signals, where I have no clue how that got in… Even a curiosity like this SatNOGS Network - Observation 4707635 (listen to the audio)

When I listen in parallel with an ordinary IC-910 or if I use remote CubicSDR, everything is normal…

I believe the airspyhf driver behaves differently now, any change in configuration?

While the original sensitivity seems to be quite good, it looks like FM repeater band is “mirrored”… maybe a problem with sample rate?

Anyone seeing similar effects after the upgrade?

Thanks, Peter

it seems this maybe related to:

Just updated (reflashed) to the latest SatNOGS client, to find out that “Airspy HF+ Discovery” is still not suported by default…
Oh No… :frowning: same procedure again…

pi@raspberrypi:~ $ SoapySDRUtil --probe="driver=airspyhf"
######################################################
##     Soapy SDR -- the SDR abstraction library     ##
######################################################

Probe device driver=airspyhf
Error probing device: SoapySDR::Device::make() no match

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Issue created, please add information if needed.

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Maybe it’s not installed by default ? I can certainly get it installed and listed in the util on both arm64 and amd64 systems:

ii  libairspy0:arm64                1.0.9-4      arm64        Tiny and efficient software defined radio receiver - library
ii  soapysdr0.7-module-airspy:arm64 0.1.2-2      arm64        Airspy device support for SoapySDR

It’s not located in the OBS but debian packages and has armhf and most common arches available.
Just try a sudo apt install soapysdr0.7-module-airspy ?

I don’t think this is the airspyhf, but the mini and r2

There is a separate Soapy repository Home · pothosware/SoapyAirspyHF Wiki · GitHub

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Ah, I see. I managed to build it to a .deb for anyone interested. You will need the build-essential, libairspyhf-dev and libsoapysdr-dev (more?).

wget https://github.com/pothosware/SoapyAirspyHF/archive/refs/tags/soapy-airspyhf-0.2.0.tar.gz
tar zxvf soapy-airspyhf-0.2.0.tar.gz
cd SoapyAirspyHF-soapy-airspyhf-0.2.0
fakeroot ./debian/rules binary
cd ..
sudo dpkg -i soapysdr-module-airspyhf_0.2.0-1_all.deb soapysdr0.7-module-airspyhf_0.2.0-1_arm64.deb

The last row will depend on what arch you run, make sure to point to the correct .deb.
Maybe the OBS deb is not that far away.

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Just to say, that I applied the procedures described earlier in this thread and my station with “Airspy HF+ Discovery” is back online on VHF for now… Hope the package will be included in next SatNOGS versions…

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It looks like folks are working on that now. Ideally it is included in the upstream SOAPY, and usable by everyone, not just SatNOGS.

Hopefully yes, I’m working on it but don’t have that hardware so I need someone that can test it. Can you help with this ? @DL4PD sends greetings (:

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For reference, the airspyhf package is available at the repos now.
apt update then install soapysdr-module-airspyhf

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