SDR Experiences

I’m looking at various types of SDR for the groundstation. Before I splash out on more expensive hardware (over NooElec SMArt) what are other people’s experiences? Currently looking at RSP2 ( and wondering if it is supported as an sdr with dual inputs rather than using a diplexer for 2m & 70cm antennas

Any thoughts?

SDRPlay devices are not very well supported and require quite a lot of manual effort to get working in GNU Radio. It has been a low priority because of the closed source driver and lack of test hardware.

That’s only from my point of view; I do not know if anybody else have been working on the gr-osmosdr and/or SoapySDR backends.

Thats good to know. I’m fairly happy with the performance of the NooElec SMArt ifor now. I’d be interested in a TXRX if/when the technology gets mature enough to allow reasonable TX capability for hamsats. First off the rotator needs fixing

The PlutoSDR can be an interesting option. The receiver part works quite well with my patches to gr-osmosdr (just submitted upstream).

I hadn’t considered that because I thought it avoided the vhf band. Maybe worth another look

Yes, officially it is UHF and up, but we found a software mod to let it tune down to 70 MHz, like the more expensive version of the transceiver chip. Similarly, one can enable the second core in the onboard ZYNQ CPU.

Some people believe these limitations were applied are partly due to specs but also to limit current consumption, so there is no guarantee…

I see, so limited in the data sheet, presumably to make sure performance is guaranteed. The NooElec dongle really isn’t too bad. For £20 you can’t complain especially if you look at the price of HF gear.