Tuesday, September 27, 2016

QSL: WBAA Lafayette IN 920

Disturbed propagation often results in very unusual catches, and WBAA is really in that category. I heard it last weekend in Kongsfjord, and an email report on Monday was given immediate attention.



Monday, September 26, 2016

QSL: WNYC New York City NY 820

WNYC had a very good signal one night at Smøla in August. After a couple of misses I found a very interested gentleman who confirmed my reception. Not only that, they published a Tumblr post where they put my recording (quite nice quality I'd say) and the picture I sent from my main DX location in Kongsfjord. In the post you can also view some of the old-style (and actually really old!) QSL cards they issued when QSL cards were the norm.

QSL: CJBQ Belleville ON 800

CJBQ had a fair signal above CKLW for a few seconds last weekend, perfectly matched with a nice ID. So a report went off today, and I got a swift response with the question would I like to be on the radio on Tuesday. Well of course! Thanks OJ for alerting me.


Friday, September 23, 2016

QSL: WMSA Massena NY 1340

Heard briefly but with a fine TOH ID during very disturbed conditions on September 21. Email response today. Massena is as "upstate New York" as you can possibly get.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

QSL: WDAL Dalton GA 1430

Good conditions towards southern USA on September 20 gave us this rare station. Thanks Ole for detecting it and OJ for finding such a nice guy to respond! Kongsfjord at its best.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

QSL: WBRV Boonville NY 900

OJ Sagdahl alerted me about this oldies station which came up at Smøla with a "The Blizzard 98.3 and 105.9 FM and 900 AM" ID. Email confirmation yesterday. WBRV is owned by Flack Broadcasting, which also operates "The Moose" on two FM frequencies.


Monday, September 19, 2016

QSL: WCLO Janesville WI 1230

My second QSL from the Mount Loran experimental site. It faded up from nothing during a local break, gave a promo with several IDs and faded down again into the massive signal from CFFB Iqaluit NU. Long and friendly response this afternoon. Wisconsin # 40.


Sunday, September 18, 2016

KiwiSDR: First Run

OK, so here it is, the new kid in (the SDR) town, the KiwiSDR. On the top shelf, with three old blokes below, all named Perseus.















And here is how it looks, when tuned to the only daytime broadcast signal I have, NRK Ingøy on 153 kHz.















Lots of noise down there as well.

The box, described as a kit, comprises the SDR board and a BeagleBone Green computer. So it doesn't need to be connected to a specific PC. No software is required, you set it up on an HTML5 capable web browser (which excludes Internet Explorer. I have tested with Edge and Chrome, and they work fine).

Unlike other SDRs, the KiwiSDR is supplied with a GPS antenna. With GPS enabled (not yet tested here), frequency accuracy and stability will improve, especially on higher frequencies. And speaking of frequencies, the KiwiSDR is a standard HF device, capable of tuning 0 - 30 MHz.

It's a bit unfair at this stage to write a "review" of the receiver. The user interface is, I understand, a work in  progress, and I have addressed several suggestions and comments to the developer. It will be interesting to see in which direction the user interface evolves.

I did make sensitivity measurements (as I always do when I get a new receiver), but the results were inconsistent with real-life observations, so I will let that rest for now. Real-life observations, in the form of comparisons with the Perseus, did tell me that the KiwiSDR is a very good receiver. It hears what the Perseus hears, and I was not able to overload it.

In its present form, the KiwiSDR is for "live" listening only, and with the capacity of four simultaneous users, locally or as a server for external access. My 4G ISP is unable to provide an APN for me to make it available online, so that door's been shut. For now.

The KiwiSDR will set you back USD 299 + shipping.  You have to use your own ethernet cable and power supply, which should be 1.5A, 5VDC. I tested with a 1A PSU and it crashed. Well, not the PSU. The antenna input is SMA.

Friday, September 16, 2016

QSL: WKST New Castle PA 1200

Another thank-you to OJS who alerted me about this excellent catch with excellent signal a few days ago. Email response this afternoon.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

QSL: WOBL Oberlin OH 1320

A few days ago WOBL faded up with a decent ID below dominant CJMR. Confirmation from the PD this afternoon. Ohio # 30.