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Thread: Realtek RTL2832 E4000 USB TV Tuner

  1. #41
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    800

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    On closer inspection I'm finding a few FM spurs with it. Our KPAC and KSTX show several SCA carriers - others may as well but don't go to dead air often/long enuf to so easily see that. The ASCII pagers between 72-76 MHz show well as do aircoms (and ATIS) over 118 MHz. I need some screen capture software on that machine (it came with a 1 TB HD so lots of room for such ) I've yet to explore UHF with the CM-4228 on it yet.

    73, Pat - WA5IYX

  2. #42
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    Jun 2009
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    OK, some screen captures from SDR#. The first shows KSTX 89.1 with SCA (88.3 has more) - others may have them but don't have enough dead air to reveal them so easily. The second is of KSGX 95.1 showng their HD IBOC sidebands as well as the RDS (text) decoding for them.

    73, Pat - WA5iYX
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  3. #43
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Enfield, CT
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    997

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    I received my USB 2.0 card in the mail this evening. Popped it in the other desktop, reloaded the driver using Zadig, clicked play on SDR# and it works.
    Batting 3 for 3 now.

    Now I'm thinking I'd like to try one of the Realtek sticks with the R820T tuner, which has a lower noise figure (the 2-3 db range instead of 4db in the E4000.

    From the SDRSharp email list...

    2012-09-07: Experimental support for dongles with the Rafael Micro R820T tuner that started appearing in May has been added to rtl-sdr source base by stevem. These tuners are supposed to cover 40Mhz to roughly 1.75GHz (with no l-band gap) with 1-2 dB less noise than the E4000 tuners. They also do not have the DC spike since they use a different, non-zero, IF. On the other hand, they seem to have more image aliasing due to being superheterodine receivers.

    The Zadig installer that is in the auto install folder is an upgraded installer, so they say. Maybe that's why it worked flawlessly the three times I used it in auto-install.
    Mike B.
    Enfield, CT
    -72 30' W/41 59' N
    FN31RX

    Mike's TV and FM DX Page
    Online since 1999 and still going!

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    800

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    OK, a 4:20 video with audio of SDR# 88-108 MHz here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0GWxCyAfe4
    With its dynamic range and overload limits it's certainly not a DXing machine, but it sure reveals things (like all the SCA carriers)!

    73, Pat - WA5IYX

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Dallas,GA
    Posts
    19

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    I have been using my card as of late to decode APRS packets in 2 meters. It helps me out in figuring out propagation in and around the Southeast due to the fact that some packet messages will travel great distances. From my QTH in Dallas, GA on most days I can log traffic in around Metro Atlanta within 100 miles easy. When propagation is good I can decode traffic in North Florida to the South, Southern Kentucky into Southwest VA to the North, Western Alabama and Eastern Mississippi to the west and into Carolina's to the east.

    The packets look like this from my QTH:

    08:15:17$ fm N4NE-1 to APRX22-0 via N3DAB-2,N4NEQ-2 UI PID=F0
    !3414.21NT08409.59W&ab0oo@arrl.net
    08:15:38$ fm AB4KN-2 to BEACON-0 via W4GR-10,N4NEQ-2 UI PID=F0
    !3329.34NN08434.06W#PHG7550/W-R-T Tyrone, GA. God bless ya'll.
    08:15:44$ fm N4NEQ-2 to APRS-0 via WIDE-0 UI PID=F0
    !3404.03NN08427.29W#PHG8460/WIDEN-N Digi info: rwf@BSRG.org
    08:16:17$ fm KF4TNP-1 to BEACON-0 via W4HP-1,WIDE1-0,WIDE2-1 UI PID=F0
    !3524.12N/08552.34W#! Manchester TN kf4tnp@kf4tnp.net voice 145.450- pl127.3
    08:16:56$ fm BALSAM-0 to APTT4-0 via N4NEQ-3,WIDE2-0 UI PID=F0
    T#018,139,074,999,320,218,00000011
    08:17:23$ fm W4LEE-1 to APU25N-0 via AB4KN-2,WIDE2-0 UI^ PID=F0
    >250052zUI-View32 V2.03
    08:17:32$ fm W4LEE-1 to APU25N-0 via W4LAW-6,WIDE2-0 UI^ PID=F0
    =3233.91N/08522.20W#East Alabama ARC APRS Digi {UIV32N}
    08:17:51$ fm W4VLD-1 to APOT21-0 via AE4XO-2,WIDE2-0,GA2-2 UI PID=F0
    !3050.80NS08319.32W#W2-2,GA2-2 VARC Digi - Valdosta, GA
    08:18:11$ fm KC4MHH-6 to R9SV5S-0 via W4DFU-3,KI4JOO-7,WIDE2-0,KD4MOJ-7,WIDE3-1 UIv PID=F0
    'n26l"Yv/]"4D}
    08:18:36$ fm K4TQL-4 to APTW01-0 via W4LAW-6,K4RJJ-7,WIDE2-0 UI PID=F0
    !3409.07N/08445.88W_WXTRAK
    08:18:53$ fm KA4GNY-3 to BEACON-0 via KA4GNY-7,W4GR-10,WIDE2-0,GA1-1 UI PID=F0
    !3339.90N/08410.60W_/U2kr
    08:18:54$ fm KA4GNY-3 to APRS-0 via KA4GNY-7,W4GR-10,WIDE2-0,GA1-1 UI PID=F0
    !!0000001A0288000027EB02B402CD----010701EA00000000.
    08:19:17$ fm AE4XO-12 to SR3W7W-0 via AE4XO-2,WIDE1-0,WIDE2-0 UI PID=F0
    `oFXlH=j/"5W}
    08:19:24$ fm W4TL-3 to APRS-0 via W4GR-10,N4NEQ-2 UI PID=F0
    !3430.57NN08348.40W#/W4TL-3 Wauka Mtn Digi at 2600' e-mail w4tl@arrl.net
    08:19:27$ fm W4TL-3 to APRS-0 via N4NE-1,N4NEQ-2 UI PID=F0
    !3430.57NN08348.40W#/W4TL-3 Wauka Mtn Digi at 2600' e-mail w4tl@arrl.net

    I am using my RTL-SDR Card running SDR# tuned to the APRS frequency 144.390 MHZ NFM, Filter bandwidth set at 11400 and squelch set at 50. You will need to download a copy of Qtmm AFSK1200 Decoder...its free and available at http://sourceforge.net/projects/qtmm/. I extracted it into a folder for easy access. Once open you point the software to the sound source of the packet, hit the play button and the messages will begin to appear in the window below.

    I use the website APRS.fi to track any of the traffic I am unsure about to get distance and heading from my QTH.

    I am using a two PC solution since I have a Alesis mixer in my shack and can route traffic from any audio source into a decoding PC. The AFSK1200 can be run on the same machine as the RTL-SDR Card with the program virtual audio cables as a source.

    I produced a video to show it in action. http://youtu.be/-3vSKDyMfAg

    Richard
    KG4EFQ
    Dallas,GA


  6. #46
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    800

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    Some more static screen captures of what elevated in-state tropo can do to clutter the band here
    http://www.qsl.net/w/wa5iyx//images/ksym-a.png
    http://www.qsl.net/w/wa5iyx//images/kroi-a.png
    http://www.qsl.net/w/wa5iyx//images/bronco93-a.png
    http://www.qsl.net/w/wa5iyx//images/kbzt-a.png

    I'd have more if the thing didn't "crunch" in mid-band and give a horrendous noise floor and spurs there. Perhaps some tuneable narrow bandpass filter ahead of it would tame things down.

    73, Pat - WA5IYX

  7. #47
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    Jul 2005
    Location
    Enfield, CT
    Posts
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    Here's something else you can see with SDR#.
    This afternoon I monitored ch2 to the west for activity. What I found was CIII-2 Bancroft, ON (350 miles NE of here) fading up and out, over and over.
    Here's a screen capture of that....

    Click image for larger version. 

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    What you see is nothing on 55.240 and just garbage on 55.250 but on 55.260 there is the carrier (bright yellow w/red line through it). I had the zoom lever about a third of the way up so I could see all three offsets clearly. Meteor pings will show up on this. So will 2Es, btw, long before you see video. My antenna is a Winegard PR-5030 with a Realistic preamp (around 20db gain and lousy 6db n/f). Height is only about 18feet agl.

    This is a cheap way to monitor the lowband VHF channels for E skip, MS or tropo conditions on lowband. You don't even need to turn the TV on.
    Last edited by Mike-CT; 09-25-2012 at 03:01 PM.
    Mike B.
    Enfield, CT
    -72 30' W/41 59' N
    FN31RX

    Mike's TV and FM DX Page
    Online since 1999 and still going!

  8. #48
    N.C. Guest

    Default Hello

    I tried to post to this thread yesturday and today,so I saved my message today (just in case it did not post).So I am going to try to post this way,sorry if the other post show up later.

    Hello everyone,
    I tried to post in here yesturday,but I don't see it so I am going to try this again.
    As of last week I could pick up every thing on my Radio Shack Pro-2018 scanner, but the county I live in went to the new Digital Viper system that some call P25 or Apco25, anyway I really don't have $500 to buy a BCD996xt scanner,so I started doing alot of research on how to turn my windows XP laptop into a scanner and well here I am.
    I am mostly home bound so the scanner was my world,and I hope I can do this.
    I am going to try and order a Realtek RTL2832 E4000 off ebay and when I get it I will open it up to make sure it is the real deal,but I have no way of knowing if it is DOA though.
    I am so glad you have done alot of trial and error on this.
    I am not a programmer and I am not going to try to say I am.I can however copy and paste pretty good though.
    I guess the main thing I need to know is while I am waiting on my Realtek RTL2832 E4000 to get here,could anyone give me the best program (link) to download to make it work , and maybe just give me directions on when I get it downloaded what I should do then?
    There is alot of sites I looked at and I chose this one because you all have done this and so I want to know the best way.The main frequencies I am looking to get are Digital 868.18750a , 868.88750c ,867.61250 ,866.17500, and I guess anywhere in this range.
    Any help would be very much appreciated.Thank you in advance.
    Sincerely,Terry

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Enfield, CT
    Posts
    997

    Default

    Hi Terry,

    As of last week I could pick up every thing on my Radio Shack Pro-2018 scanner, but the county I live in went to the new Digital Viper system that some call P25 or Apco25


    As I understand this, the new system is digital and your Radio Shack scanner is analog and you can't pick up the new system. If that is the case then you won't hear it on the Realtek either. If I'm wrong, I know one of the other guys will correct me.

    I guess the main thing I need to know is while I am waiting on my Realtek RTL2832 E4000 to get here,could anyone give me the best program (link) to download to make it work , and maybe just give me directions on when I get it downloaded what I should do then?

    The program you'll need is SDR# (SDR Sharp). I have also seen that early on HDSDR was used. I'd prefer that program because of the way frequencies are scaled, but I haven't been able to make it work with the Realtek. So the one program left is SDR#.

    You really need this to get SDR# up and running. I actually printed out the pdf document and I keep it handy. Also you need this to get your driver installed. Get your driver installed and you're almost home free.

    Note that this dongle does not scan like a Bearcat or a Pro scanner. I think I read that there is a plug-in that allows it to scan like a scanner but I don't really need it for what I do (460mhz police, weatherradio, 155mhz police and medical calls, some FM, 118-134mhz aircraft and whatever else I find as I poke around). Through the software you will be able to see a 2mhz slice of spectrum. You'll see signals coming and going and it's really helpful.

    I'm not sure if this is going to do what you want it to do, though. Let us know what happens when you get the dongle.
    Mike B.
    Enfield, CT
    -72 30' W/41 59' N
    FN31RX

    Mike's TV and FM DX Page
    Online since 1999 and still going!

  10. #50
    N.C. Guest

    Default

    Mike,
    Thanks for responding, and for the information.
    I was really hoping this would pick up the Digital since my old scanner was Analog, but if it won't ,I guess I can just play around with it a bit, if I can get it to working.
    Thank you for your time,and when I get the tuner,I will let you know if I get it going.
    Sincerely,Terry

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