Friday, December 31, 2010

King´s Village DX-station November: DYEZ Aksyon Radyo Bacolod 684 kHz


On November 6th I was lucky to capture some philipinos on MW, which is always nice in Southern Finland with rather modest antenna systems. I was also lucky to set my Perseus to record a bit more around the TOH at 13 utc (instead on normal 4-8 minutes around the toh) and got finally a recording of about 20 minutes. I noted a few Philipinos and this was the most interesting for me as i have heard this tentatively only once in Dec. 2009. Some other stations from the Philippines were noted today as well, among them another one from Bacolod: Bombon Radio 1269 and a new one for me. DZIQ on 990. DYEZ 684 had a typical news and information program with some advertisements and a few mentionings of "Aksyon Radyo Bacolod".

From the station´s web-page we can find some information:
"BROADCASTING from the city of Bacolod, the commercial and political hub in Negros Occidental, dyEZ Aksyon Radyo-Bacolod traces its roots to the city of La Carlota where it first started operations from the administrative building of the then Elizalde-owned Central Azucarera De La Carlota in the 1960s.
The small community radio station, originally having the call sign of dyEN, hosted some of the pioneer broadcasters in the province until the declaration of Martial Law when it was closed down. Several years later, it resumed operations as dyEZ and became the dominant news and music station before the proliferation of FM stations. By the 1980s, dyEZ shifted its programming to fulltime news and public affairs. With it came the change of name from Radyo Balita to Radyo Owang until finally settling on what is widely perceived as the most the appropriate name for a dynamic news and public affairs station: Aksyon Radyo.Serving a base listenership of at least a million from its primary area of coverage, which are Negros Occidental’s 32 towns and cities, Aksyon Radyo-Bacolod has consistently proven its worth in the most competitive environment of AM broadcasting in the province."

The station is fun to listen and you can do it easily just by logging into the page of DYEZ:http://www.aksyonradyobacolod.com/

Best Wishes & Happy New Year to Aksyon Radio DYEZ!

73 tk

Monday, December 20, 2010

Season´s Greetings!



Once again we are approaching the winter Solstice tomorrow (21st Dec at 23.38 UTC) so it is time to wish you all the Season´s Greetings!
Actually this day means "the start of winter" - obviously we have already seen the start of the winter in Finland at least with snow accumulating now to about 60 centimeters in the South of Finland!
This Solstice is a very unusual also as we will have the lunar eclipse also on the same day (Dec 21st), unfortunately it seems we will have clouds in my part of the country at that time (morning).

NetSDR testfile

A testfile recorded in Muhos 5th Dec around 07 UTC (1300 kHz Span, recorded with NetSDR, ant:bevarage to North America, about 900 m @305 degrees) is now available at:
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/5321722/MUH%20051210-1150000Hz_20101205_065851.zip
It is a huge one (5 min.) zipped, about 1,6 Gb file.
It can be listened to with SpectraVue 3.09 or later as well as with the WinradHD, the later seems to have nice sound, but unfortunately there seems not to be a timebar so you have to listen it through.
EDIT Dec 20th:
Sorry, it seems the file can not be accessed, as the following message has been received from DropBox:
"This email is an automated notification from Dropbox that your Public links have been temporarily suspended on account of generating excessive traffic. Your Dropbox will continue to function completely normally with the exception of Public links."
Sorry for that.
73 TK

Sunday, December 12, 2010

PUDXK-PreChristmas Meeting & Testing the netSDR at Muhos


It was nice not only to test and do some DXing at Muhos during the weekend 4th - 5th December but also to celebrate 2 x 50 years anniversary of two PUDXK-members (the two Jaris). We started again (like two other PUDXK-meetings) at "Sokeri-Jussin Kievari" at downtown Oulu (at Pikisaari, a small island just near the City Centre) - http://www.sokerijussi.net/.
At the listening QTH (JPRs DX-QTH Muhos) we had nice weather, some sunshine during the few daylight hours between 10 and 14 local time(sic) and temps around -10 degrees. Only about 5 cm snow, whereas in Southern Finland we got more and more during the week after this weekend, now accumulating to about 1/2 a meter at time of this writing!

Testing the netSDR
Testing was done only by "ear" without any equipments. I made some simultaneous files with Perseus & netSDR for later review. The Perseus was hooked up to an AcerLaptop (dual-core @ about 2 GHz)while the netSDR was connected to a bit older Dell (single core @about 2 Ghz tabletop pc). So the limitation of processing power limited us just to record everything on netSDR at FFT of 2048FFT/BLK and all the analyzing has to be made aftwerwards. The listening has to bedone using the spectrum display of the total span of 1300 kHz without measuring the exact carrier frequencies. The software used was SpectraVue 3.09. I did make some listening and freq. measurements also using a small span to achieve very good bandwidth resolution (picture) - and comparing the sensitivity with Perseus at the same time.

Performance of the netSDR as expected ...
was very good with a low noise floor and oscillator noise as stated in the specs. You have to notice of course that the unit tested was a prototype and as far as I know the real units (coming Q1-2011 ?) will be a bit better and there will be an option (?) to have even an oscillator of even lower noise soon. So by ear the output of netSDR sounded to be better than that of Perseus and/or IQ we had working at the same time. I do not know if some noise of Perseus was coming from the Perseus PSU as it was using the original power supply unit. The NetSDR was using an "old separate linear (?) PSU" originally used with SDR14 - not the original of 14 or netSDR. It seems that also the netSDR is equipped with a small switching PSU which should be replaced. An issue I fully do not understand - that was the case also with the original PSU of SDR14. Anyway the low signal performance of netSDR was good as well as filtering with the provided software (SpectraVue 3.09). I made a small comparison with very low signals on HF (the Papuan later on on 3905 kHz) by listening it directly on both the netSDR and Perseus. In genaral the reception was quite similar but the sound of netSDR sounded "better" and cleaner (the bandwidth of both rx´s was about 3 kHz). But the difference was very small. What we are missing still with the SpectraVue is the notch which is good on Perseus and on some situation wins the competition, when there is a strong het or signal nearby. As reported earlier the measurement of exact carriers was easier with netSDR/ SpectraVue as SVue tells you "automatically" 4 most powerfull carriers of the viewed span - and you can also see the spectrum (and carriers) at small spans when LSB/USB is used while on Perseus you have to use AM when looking at the spectrum or waterfall on small spans (usually we use 100 or 200 Hz spans). With Svue rather exact measurement can be done like on the picture: using the FFT of about 1Million and demod span of 100 kHz the resolution is about 0.1 Hz. Well, this is not often suitable and when you record 1300 kHz span you have to do measurements with the resolution of about 0.7Hz - which is, however usually enough.
As the unit was an prototype one, there was some decrease of spectrum (maybe the sensitivity as well) on the higher end of the mediumwave band (1500...1800 kHz) which could easily be seen on the spectrum. This issue has been reported also by RFSpace, however.

Recording the Spectrum ...
of 1300 kHz was good, and the 5 minute files were about 2 Gb each. While recording it was possible not only to listen but also to transfer file to external HDs, connect them etc which was very good as the netSDR was SUPER stable - it was running about two days without any crashes. This could be because it was connected by Ethernet and not by the USB. The USB-connected Perseus did suffer of some instability - an issue detected earlier also - you have to be careful when connecting other usb-devices when you have Perseus recording - we had some issues when the Perseus stopped working during these situations. The connecting of netSDR via Ethernet worked really good - this was reported by TuA earlier also when he was using the device at ENOX in November. The 1300 kHz span was good as this is enough for the entire MW-band to be captured. The size of files is so about 12 x 2 Gb = 24 Gb/hour when Perseus record files (using the 2 MS/s/1600 kHz span) of about 2,3 Gb/5 minutes which makes about 28 Gb/hour. OK, not a very big issue, but during the 10 hour session you can save about 40 Gb of HardDisk. We did not tried to record other than 1300 kHz SPANs duringthe tests. It seems we did not do the calibration very well, as the both NetSDR-files and Perseus-files seems not to show correct frequencies, the NetSDR files seems to have an error of about 1 Hz (too much) while Perseus shows about 2-3 Hz too much. Shame on us.

Evaluation of files later ...
at home I finally made some afterwards listening ("Post DX-session evaluation") of the files of total of about 300 Gb. Again there was no big difference between the signals I listened to, so in general both hardwares worked ok. Maybe I can do some real "DX-listening" with those files later (I transferred only some files of TOH´s of the two nights with me) in a few days. I know some files have already been analyzed by JVA who has also a powerful "automatic split frequency capture&analyze software" - but he can tell about it later on. The listening was done using my Pentium dual-core @3GHz (4 Gb memory) PC so it was easy and took maximum 10-20% of the processing power. The recommended PC/Laptop for the NetSDR is at least about 2 GHz/dualcore, but as we noted the recording and listening (without exact carrier measurements) can be done easily with older pcs/laptops of about 2 Ghz/single-core. Then you have to use the full spectrum view and set the FFT low (like 2048 FFT/BLK) and possible set the screen update speed (n=10-20). And furthermore - you do need a BIG HD (preferably an internal, but the external works ok and there is no problem with multible USB-connections as you have the RX hooked up to the Ethernet port).

The reception conditions...
towards "TA" were rather average to good especially on 5 December (coming better later that week) and some early reception of common NAs were noted starting at around 19 utc. Also some Latin American were noted at night on both 4 and 5 December. The conditions were rather wide spread however with stations from Venezuela to West Cost.The antennas used during the tests were beverages (700-900 meters)usually at around 290 ... 305 degrees.

Last but not least...
I have to point out that the NetSDR is priced at about 1300...1400 euros - and you can get a Perseus at about 700...800 euros, so if the money talks you can get "about the same" with 500 euros less. However, if you want to see the exact carriers easily, prefer using the SpectraVue (or SDRRadio) software and like the "look and feel" of NetSDR and last but not least - like to use the Ethernet connection (and easily connect the device used remotedly via net) the choise is NetSDR. And there will be some software development going on with the SpectraVue (I believe), SDRRadio and what is the most interesting with the totally new "CuteSDR", which seems to be an open source platform to develop softwares available also for Mac OS - an issue most wanted by the increasing number of Mac-users among radio enthusiasts!
Well, which one? for myself - I´d like to have them both.

Thank You very much for RF-Space letting us to test this proto of the great new receiver, let´s hope we will see the final products soon!

A testfile of 5 minutes covering 500-1800 kHz will be published later on for those wanting to test with the SpectraVue 3.09 or later.
73 TK

Monday, December 6, 2010

SWR Special Summer Meeting Broadcast - Results of the Competition


I have finally got the list of the DXers who had accepted reports to Scandinavian Weekend Radio on August 6-7th 2010 and we have done the decisions of the winners of the competition. As we reported earlier, a special QSL will be out - the Art Director has been doing the first drafts and we hope to get the printing machines printing during the Christmas Season, please be patient!

The list of reporters and distances from the tx site Virrat is:
Europe/World: Alan Pennington, Caversham, UK. Distance: 1900 kms.
Scandinavia: Henrik Klemetz, Borås, Sweden. Distance: 780 kms
Finland: Raimo Karjalainen, Rantsila. Distance: 257 kms.
Thanks to Mauno / MR for calculating the distances!

The prize of the most distance reporter, the WRTH 2011 (from the WRTH) will go to Alan soon!
The special prizes for two others will be sent also soon - these are donated by the Kymenlaakso AMK University of Applied Sciences.

Thanks to all the reporters!

73s, The FDXA Summer Meeting 2010 Team.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

King´s Village DX-Station October 2010: Radio Verdad Guatemala 4052.5 kHz


Also this month a station on the tropical bands was chosen. This is mainly because this particular station is one of the few station still transmitting from Central America on tropical bands and it is a very friendly one for radio ethusiasts. I remember to have heard back in the 20´th century and got also a reply then. I tried it a couple of times this fall when it was transmitting with a temporary small transmitter on 4055 kHz but I think it was rather hard to capture in Europe. Now after the end of October ( I checked it on Oct. 28th and found it with rather good signal) it was again on 4052.5 (4052.455) and since then it seems to be a regular visitor on this a bit odd frequency between 75 and 60 mb.
Information I have seen (thanks to R. Wayne Borthwick, VA7GF vie Glenn Hauser DXLD):
The antenna is a 89 m long with a phasing stub 11m long hanging near the middle. The two current nodes are separated to give near maximum collinear gain (about 7.5 db above isotropic theoretical). Since the antenna is oriented NE to SW it is ideally oriented toward covering Mexico and Western N. America on one side and C. America, S. America on the other side.

I designed it so the lower elevation angle minor lobes are about 8 to 10 dB down off the ends of the antenna to cover E. USA and Europe. It hangs over a gully with a max depth of about 25m and is end fed through a matching network by approx. 10 m of RG8 coax. The matching network is mounted in a sheet metal box on the tower and consists of a single 30 cm diameter coil of three-eighths soft copper tubing. Top of the coil is to antenna and bottom to ground with the 50 ohm tap about 1.8 turns up from the ground.

The big problems in the installation were getting a good solid ground in dry earth covered by concrete and buildings. Lots of work by the mason chipping holes for the ground wires in the concrete. It also turned out the power feed from the transformer at the edge of the of property had a bad neutral so today that got fixed. Prior to that we were completing the neutral current through our antenna ground, and indication that the antenna ground is at least capable of a few amps at 60 Hz without too much voltage drop.

Hope this and the 500 W carrier from the Omnitronix solid state transmitter helps reception up your way. 73 (R. Wayne Borthwick, VA7GF, Oct 29, WORLD OF RADIO 1537, DX LISTENING DIGEST).

Freezing DX!


Two important issues are to be announced soon:

1) The list of the accepted reports from DXers of the SWR FDXA Summer Meeting Broadcasts 6-7th August.

2) The King´s Village DX Stations October and November.

While waiting for these news (which are not from the DXleaks) we can enjoy the Art of the Arctic Winds coming from the North Pole at the window of the DX-QTH at King´s Village. Yes, it has been freezing times the last two weeks with temps. down to -20 degrees C. But we are used to manage, unlike the friends of us in Central Europe.

73 TK

Saturday, November 20, 2010

How to Listen to the Philipinos on MW?



During the "Golden Years of DXing in 1970´s" with loops and small wire antennas (and an old tube receiver) one could easily get a few MW stations from the Philippines also when they started the broadcast day. I remember one of these was DWWW on 1280. And several others, but that was before the Asians adjusted the channels to the current 9-kHz spaced allocation which is everywhere but in Americas.
Things become a lot more difficult later on. However, during wintertime, especially in October, sometimes you can get a few (a dozen seems to be almost the maximum number) of them even in South Finland. What you need is a wire to 50...80 degrees (a beverage could be best or a BOG/LWOG) of about a wavelength long and of course a suitable receiver. Nowadays a SDR-rx which records the whole band before the sunset (usually in Finland around 12-14 utc) at least during the TOH´s is good. A good outdoor loop (ALA100 for example) can be used as well, but you have to reduce the intereference from Europe. In Lapland the situation is of course better.
It seems that last season was not that good as the more Northernly stations (Japan, Korea and Northern China) were often the dominants. For these areas in South East Asia, you need actually a bit more disturbed propagation conditions.
This year I has been able to note at least two good days for reception of Philippinos in October: the 5th and the 10th of Oct. Some new frequencies were noted like 684 (Aksyon Bacolod) and 864 (UNID so far). I have tried to measure some of the offsets (list) as quite a few of them seems to be rather stable on their offsets. From the list all but those on 1422 (maybe back on nominal now?) and 1575 have been noted recently. Some of these might be possible even in Central Europe - at least the easily recognizible carriers? Please note the accurancy of the offsets is about 1 Hz due to the daily variation, Doppler effects and the resolution / accurancy of Perseus (some of the measurements have been done by SpectraVue-IQ).
What's also interesting with the Philipinos is the language (sounds a bit like Spanish) and the style of programming they have (some of them religious, though). Those having "normal" informative / music programs also identifies rather well with call letters and/or slogans. They seems to have to give "the official ID" prior to closing down.
The published lists of "KOJE" etc of NA-MEX stations is a big one as the lists of Latins (and so seems to be the lists of logged "Kiwis" as well nowadays. This is a tiny one, but the small number can become bigger - so let´s try to get them!

New SDR-Equipments & Tools


While waiting for a new NetSDR with the latest versions of software I made some tests with SDR-Radio SOftware. I was not very satisfied to measure frequencies accurately or maybe I just do not know how to do it? However it works OK and especially the easy connection with remote RXs is interesting.

The software has a nice tool to analyze IQ-files to make quick waterfall charts of several files. What I would like to add here is lines of frequency steps (like vertical lines / grids for every Hz or so).

Here is an example of a typical situation on 1580 kHz - the TA conditions were rather poor, but the dominant TA carriers can be seen around the nominal (usually: Maria Barranquilla right below, Bogota station on around +4 Hz and the Dominican on around +16 Hz. I had to adjust contrast to show only the strongest carriers as there are a lot of RFI at my home QTH. Interesting smearing can be seen also before the sunrise.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

King´s Village DX Station September: Radio Fly, Papua-New Guinea


It is not very often that a new shortwave station starts transmissions on tropical bands. However, during the summer the first signals from this new station in Papua- New Guinea was first time picked up in Finland.
After I got my Asia-BOG working in September I could listen to Radio Fly on 3915 kHz very often, sometimes with good signal during the night time broadcasts of mostly music with some IDs and announcements. The best time was always before the local dawn.
However in the end of the month this frequency has been silent. I have heard them on 5960 kHz but very seldom and always with the very heavy intereference from China which has a powerfull transmitter on 5960.
The station is run by the Ok Tedi Mining Company and there is more info on their web-page here
Let´s hope the station will resume using 3915 kHz in the future.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Trying to Catch the Harvest Moon and check the Autumn Equinox in Northern Germany!


I had a very nice overnight (21-22 Sept.)visit to a wellknown DXer Jürgen Bartels at Süllwarden near the coast of North Sea. JBs QTH seems to be one of the best in the Continental Europe, as being in the countryside there is no big manmade noise - and being at the edge of Europe facing towards the North America, it is ideal for TransAtlantic DX. I was amazed of the set ups of JBs equipment: everything including FM and TV was controlled by a sigle PC and you can even do simultaneous listening with sdr-rxs (Perseus / WinRadio)and exact measurements of carriers by SpectrumLab - the demodulation was done by SpectrumLab as well - and the antennaselection by the famous JB´s StationList. Jurgens photo of the setup with some TVDX going on is here.
We did note some of the most easier North American stations on MW but something was coming through by tropo on FM and even something by Es on TV. But we so much to talk during the night that the real listening was impossible.
You can see more about the Jürgen´s set up at his web pages:http://dx.3sdesign.de/
When flying back from Berlin later that week I noted also a very rapid temperature change in the troposphere - later on I heard that a good ducting with big tropos on FM were noted (from Finland to Romania and Eastern Europe)!

And yes - we were very near the Autumnal Equinox moment - and the Harvest Moon was almost 100% Full during the Night - wouuuu!

Thank You Jürgen - Danke Schön!
73 TK

Monday, October 4, 2010

Final Call For Reports of SWR 6th August

This is the final call of all reception reports of the special SDXL-Summer Meeting 2010 broadcast over Scandinavian Shortwave Radio on August 6th.

All correct reports will be answered with a special QSL.

Furthermore there will be prizes:
1st Prize to the most distance listener - WRTH 2011 from World Radio TV Handbook-
check: WRTH

2nd The most distance Scandinavian
and
3rd The most distance Finnish
Dxers will get a special prize as well.

Please send your reports with the return postage to SWR (before 1st November 2010):
SWR

Thursday, September 30, 2010

DX-Station August 2010: CX154 Radio Patria Treinta y Trés, Uruguay 1540 kHz


On August 21st I had one of the best Uruguay-openings on mw for years. Although I could "listen" (record) on 1390 - 1580 kHz, several - for me new - captures were found. Again, Thanks to Henrik Klemetz some of these were solved/verified, like Treinta y Tres 1390, Radio San Carlos on 1510 and the station one 1540 which turned out to be from Treinta y Trés as well.

The station of August on 1540 is RADIO PATRIA, TREINTA Y TRES, URUGUAY and it is easy for me to announce this as the station of August as it made it through interference by other Latins and Europeans (on 1539)!

I thought the station has been heard earlier in Scandinavia, but I am not sure as the station writes "Es la primera confirmación de recepción a larga distancia que recibo".

Thanks for the material send by the stations technical personel Sr Gian Carlo Fallini as well as Paolo Fallini CX2UA for the photos!
More pictures at the blog of CX2UA

It really seems the start of the season has favoured some stations further South, like from Uruguay and Argentina, but also some from Peru. So the conditions might be a bit different of that of the season 2009-2010.

73,tk

SALUDOS CORDIALES Y GRACIAS AM 1540 RADIO PATRIA TREINTA Y TRES!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

DX-Station of the Summer 2010: Radio Corporación, Cerro de Pasco 1540 kHz


Before the medium wave season really starts (actually it has started already) I decided to announce a DX-Station of the Summer Season - this station was observed first time already in March 2010 and was identified first in Sweden by several dxers with the help of Henrik Klemetz - it has been noted also after that a copule of times even in summer months. Thanks to the stations frequency which is a bit above the nominal, it can been "seen" often and there is also a "het" easily audible on the upper side band of 1540 with the favourable propagation conditions to Peru. The station is located very high - at the altitude more then 4300 meters - maybe one of the reason it can be heard so well and often although there are several stations around 1540 kHz often present. The station identifies also as "La Voz de Cerro de Pasco" but often just "Corporación" is heard. I don´t know if the station is active on its sw-frequency 6170.

Saludos Cordiales a "Radio Corporación"!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

It´s Harvest Time!


This years Harvest Time of DXing Latin America has begun indeed! Some nice openings to Peru and LaPlata area has been noted.
Particularly interesting conditions has been observed before the current (23-26 August) Coronal Hole distururbance.
On August 20th the conditions favoured more Argentina while on August 21 some interesting stations from Uruguay were noted. As an example of the mixed stations can be seen on the screenshot of an IQ-recording containing pictures at 0230 when Radio Belgrano on 1509.99 was dominating (it has been on this "split" quite a long time) - but soon another station just above it was noted - also from LaPlata - the second screenshot shows the situation at 03.00 when another one was dominanting. After 03 utc with some commercial spots for Maldonado and San Carlos are was heard and a full ID after that ""...15-10 kHz Radio San Carlos, una radio regional cubriendo este y sur del Uruguay.." (Thanks to Henrik Klemetz for checking the ID).
Once again an example how modern SDRs help us to see there is something else on the channel than the normal dominant!
Some other (for me new) stations were noted on August 20-21 like Argentinians 1550 LT23, 1560 LT11 and a few still unidentified Uruguayans on 1520 (pres. one of these was from Uruguay) and 1540 (commercials mentioning Uruguay, tentatively this could be Radio Centro). It seems quite a few new split frequenccies were noted as well. Stay tuned for more info and the station of the month to be revealed soon!
73 TK

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The MW-DX-Season 2010-11 Officially Started!


This season´s mw-dx was officially opened during the "SDXL-Summer Meeting 2010" at Haapavesi. The Fireworks at the end of the meeting together with a heavy thunderstorm (sic!) marked the "official start" this year.

It seems there has been some good Trans Atlantic DX-openings like the one on August 9th with some nice loggings of Bolivia (at least on 1440 by JVH) ! and a few Peruvians (1540.16 seems to be rather common now, noted also at my home QTH). It seems we will see some good openings towards Latin America also later this month.

More about the Summer Meeting with some pictures later on. Stay Tuned. In the meantime please try to identify some of the DX-stations from the small video of the performance by our special guest star at the meeting Sauli Heikkilä ("DXing in 1970´s").
73 TK
video

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Special Broadcast from the SDXL Summer Meeting - and a Competition


A Special broadcast by the Scandianvian Weekend Radio on 1602 kHz & HF will be broadcasted from the SDXL Summer Meeting at Haapavesi on August 6th - 7th. More info at swradio.net.

Competion for DX-listener´s


SDXL in co-operation with Northern Dimenson DXers, Haapavesi Folk High School and King´s Village DX will announce a competition for DXers in Finland and abroad!

Who will be able to pick up the broadcasts on August 6th-7th from the biggest distance (from the TX site at Virrat, Finland N 62°23' E 23°37').

The competition will have 3 categories:
1) Finnish listeners
2) Scandinavian listeners
3) Rest of the World

All reports should be sent (with a return postage) to SWR (see SWRadio.net). Please give a distance and/or your coordinates with the report.

Correct reports will be replied with a special QSL-Card.

More info about the convention at http://dx2010.blogspot.com/

Best 73s
SDXL Summer Meeting Team

Monday, June 21, 2010

Happy Summer Solstice !


So we are again wittnessing the time when the "sun is standing". Although the sun was behind some clouds at 14.28 local time (11.28 UT, the exact time of the solstice) it seems we are starting to move towards the next medium wave season - slowly. As the sun stands so did my little friend on the tree, staring at my ALA100 loop under the old oak tree in my backyard. The antenna is having a summer rest for a month or two...

King´s Village DX wish you a Happy Summer Solstice 2010!

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Secret of the "Kantelemies" revealed!

video
During a short visit at Haapavesi with some preparations for the next solar minumum (more about that later on)I got the answer of the strange "Kantelemies" / "Kanteleman" standing at the backyard of the DX-Summer Meeting Venue´s Buildings at Haapavesi: the guy is playing with this nice instrument the first version of an old traditional Finnish song which has been an interval signal of YLE "Suomen Yleisradio" - Finnish Broadcasting Company since 1931! Actually the very first tune was played with kantele and the later version with other instruments and finally by the computer. A Kantele is a tradional instrument of the people of North Eastern parts of Europe at least. A kantele (pronounced [ˈkɑntele] in Finnish) or kannel ([ˈkɑnːel] in Estonian) is a traditional plucked string instrument of the zither family native to Finland, Estonia, and Karelia. It is related to the Russian gusli, the Latvian kokle and the Lithuanian kanklės. Together these instruments make up the family known as Baltic psalteries (Wikipedia). Haapavesi is very well known of this instrument and has been called also as a "Kantele Town" of Finland! You can listen to the original YLE-interval signal by clicking the video above.

More details with programs (in Finnish) now about the FDXA Summer meeting blog: http://dx2010.blogspot.com/.

The next picture shows that the preparation for the next solar minimum has been taken place at my Haapavesi QTH: totally 238 birches has been planted in two rows (to the north west, towards North America) - so maybe I have to start more activily to dx North America after 5-6 years when the trees should be of about 5 meters high. I will be back of the results then...

Sunday, May 23, 2010

More details of the SDXL Summer Meeting in August


...will be published soon. In the meantime, you can take a look of the symbols of the event: maybe the first one is a guy tuning an old tube receiver and another one, erecting antennas during the winter dx-pedition or maybe "following the tracks of a DX" (which seems to be a new habbit among sdr-dxers...).
Stay tuned for more information at sdxl-summer meeting 2010

Sunday, May 16, 2010

King´s Village DX-Station April: Radio Victoria, Arequipa


This station was finally IDed in April after many recordings on this very interesting channel, often dominated by the Venezuelan or Colombian stations. As Radio Victoria is a bit low on the frequency it is easy to see even without audio. Now on April 10th the channel was free of other stations and the station ID was heard almost in the beginning of the IQ-recording starting at around 0250. In about an half an hour the station had only this announcement and non stop music programmes.
As my sister´s son (Jarkko) visited Arequipa he made some recordings with an "semi ultralight" Philips receiver & MP3-recorder (Transcend MP330, which is a nice little device with a line-in!) and he managed to make some observations of the Peruvian stations in Arequipa. More about his observations later on - the recordings have been analyzed by Henrik Klemetz. Among other things some announcements and slogans of Radio Victoria were found:”Radio Victoria, llegando a todo el sur del Perú, presentó ‘Los Protagonistas’ en Victoria deportiva”. “Transmite, transmite, radio, radio, radio, Victoria. Radio Victoria, la emisora de Arequipa para el Perú”. “Radio Victoria, en todo superior, superior, superior”.
Thanks also for the logo of the station, Henrik!

Saludos cordiales a Radio Victoria, Arequipa!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

King´s Village DX-Station March: Radio Cóndor Manizales


This station was heard on the nice "Manizales" dx-opening on March 26th. As in my earlier post the identity was found by Henrik Klemetz (TNX HK!) and the station also verified that it was really Radio Cóndor although the word "Cóndor" was just lost in the very deep fade at around 04.00. A nice email from the station´s director pointed out of a nice coindicence as my DX-QTH is near Kotka city in Finland (Kotka in English = eagle and "cóndor" is a big "Andean eagle" as well. The director Mrs. Ana María Mesa writes "Sí, el cóndor es un ave andina de gran envergadura. Es una bonita coincidencia."
Below is a clip with both the ID captured on March 26th and an "original" from the web (tnx HK!). Although it is hard to hear the "Cóndor" when the station was heard, the station verified that the program was from them, as well as the (canned) ID although it fell down fading out at the critical moment. Thanks for the picture of Manizales,Henrik.

Muchas Gracias Directora Ana María Mesa!
video

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Measuring Latin American frequencies


During a few nice mornings in March I made some more offset measurements of the typical (and some more rare) stations of Colombia (& some other Latin American countries).
Especially on March 26th during a nice opening to Colombia favouring Manizales - Cali area, quite a few signals were well above audio level making IDing also by audio possible. The list of the statations heard is on picture below the article. The band was captured simultanously by IQ- and SDR-14-receivers at the King´s Village QTH covering 1190 - 1580 kHz. I have kept also one IQ on at home more to review the current conditions and make some observations during the sunrise period (usually about 15 minutes by daily basis) with a ALA100 loop (3x7 meters) in the garden. Although the urban RFI is heavy. sometimes signals do make their way up from the noise. On 26th March nice signals from some of those Colombians were noted also at home. The clearest was Sonora Cali mixed with Maria Manizales on 1500 kHz. At the picture you can easily see the slight drift of Maria and Sonora closing down (a clip with the Sonora sign off with QRM of Radio Maria).
video
The second figure shows a three days analysis on 1540. It is very easy to do with the SpectraVue automatically just to "listen" afterwards with waterfall and "allow file chaining" on. All measurements are done on a resolution of 0.19 Hz, but there is a calibration error of (below) 1 Hz. On 1540 it was nice to note that besides the common Bahamas (dominates during conditions favoring the Caribbean/Colombia) or TurboMix Cajamarca (during conditions favouring Peru) a Colombian station on 1539.994(5) could be noted. The waterfall shows it being the dominant on March 26th.

The station turned out to be Radio Cóndor Manizales which could be an "easy guess" as Mainzales was also strong on 1450.027 (no ID though) and 1500.005 (Maria). Thanks to Henrik Klemetz (again) to solving the ID!
On the bigger view a station on 1540.154-5 can be seen. This was first noted in Sweden by Gert Nilsson. On March 26th the close down was at 04.17 after instrumental music. A Peruvian or from Bolivia? Any ideas?
Remarks 17 April: According to Swedish DXers the station is Radio Corporación, La Voz de Cerro de Pasco (Tnx TJ, HK)


The whole list (mainly 26 March & a few others can be found by clicking the text below)
The list of offsets (google docs)
.

73 TK

Saturday, March 27, 2010

King´s Village DX-Station February: Taiyuan PBS China 1422

It took some time to announce the February DX-Station as I tried to found some info about this one - Taiyuan PBS, Voice the Elderly, which was first noted already in November - it must have raised the power as soon it become a dominant Asian station on this channel. Often it is also stronger than the German station, at least in Eastern Scandinavia. The ToH id starts always with a Time Check (like at 13 hrs) "Beijing shi jian er shi dian zheng" (Beijing time exactly=zheng 21) followed by "Taiyuan ren men guang bo diantai" (Taiyuanin People Radio Station) " and the channel "Laonian ren yisheng" (for Elderly People life) the frequency "AM yi si er er" (AM 1422) and at last "Huanying shou ting" (Welcome to listen). On screenshot you can see the station being quite strong on 1422.995 while Germany is on 1422.00. It seems this channel is only on AM as usually these Chinese channels gives first the FM then the AM frequencies.
The Chinese stations on MW are always a challenge as there seems to be always new transmitters and program channels to be found. Several new have been observed this winter as well. And well, the language is another challenge indeed!
Ni Hao!
TK video

Saturday, March 20, 2010

SDR- IP impressions


SDR- IP impressions during a one night listening tests
at Muhos:

As there has been earlier posts about the SpectraVue´s approach to listening and measuring the frequencies (see posts on the KingsVillageDX-blog) this is not discussed here rather we try to make a summary of the lsitening tests by TuA in Lapland, some comparisions by listening to mw-band at Muhos (about 1000 m beverage to the West) on March 5-6th and the analysis of the recorded files by afterwards.

Go to the full story at pudxk.blogspot.com !

Friday, March 19, 2010

Feelings from the PUDXK Winter Meeting

Some feelings & pictures from the PUDXK 2010 Winter Meeting. Impressions of SDR-IP will be published soon at the PUDXK-Blog.
73 TK video

Happy Spring Equinox!

So it is time to turn into Spring time now with more sunshine and less Northern Dimension DX-conditions. But be prepared for the nice Trans Atlantic dx, maybe again a bit better for the Andies and later to Brazil and La Plata. Meanwhile you can look at the sunrise around 06 local and listen to the spring birds!
73 TK video

Friday, March 12, 2010

MW-conditions Nov. 2009 - Feb 2010


Maybe the best mw-reception conditions particulary to Northern Dimensions (actually from Japan to North America West Cost) were observed in Scandinavia during the last few months. The conditions did change however in February. Is this the normal annual change towards more active sun during the spring equinox or is this due to the rapidly increasing solar activity will be seen soon.

However I make a small analysis of the "Auroral level Indexes" (POES measurements) making a graph of smoothed indexis (about 9000 observations of the satellite measurements over the Northern Hemisphere) from November to February.

It seems that the lowest average of Auroral levels for a long time were on December 2009 with an averaged value of 2.64 while the averages for Nov. was 3.05, for Jan. 3.12 rising to 4.21 in February.

73 TK

Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Latest DX-conditions Prediction Method


The new method for prediction of mediumwave reception conditions using the "Icicle observation Method" (not yet approved by scientists, though) has been discovered this winter! The picture shows a clear correlation of icicles and Auroral Level (prediction by the University of Colorado). More research will be done in a near future. Note that the picture shows improving conditions at the end of this month (27-28 Feb & 1 March)which actually have already been noted by Nordic dxers.
This is one of the items to be discussed at the next PUDXK-winter meeting next week near Oulu. There will be other interesting themes as well - stay tuned into the PUDXK-blog and this one in March. ;-)
And please be carefull on the roof - just now billions of tons of snow is covering the roofs in Finland and Scandinavia and people with snow shovels are a common view.
73 TK

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Special DX-Station of "Holiday Season 2009-10" Arctic Radio Morokulien


Although I do not collect QSLs any more it is nice to get one ;-) !.
This special station has been reported earlier in blogs and reviews and today I got a printed QSL. Actually my reports were just information of tests and broadcasts, mainly on this blog (or email to the organnizers). So it was nice to receiver also a card and a verification of the reception of Dec 20th 2009.
So this is a special "King´s Village DX-Station" of this winter ARTIC RADIO MOROKULIEN IN FREDSRIKET MOROKULIEN.
Once again my best wishes for 50 year old Artic Radio Club!
Ja, må hon leva uti hundrade år!
73 TK

Monday, February 22, 2010

Radio Symban, Sydney 2368.5 - once again


This DU-sw station seems to be a real DX-target in Scandinavia now. Rumours say it has more power now, although my observations show not very good reception. Or maybe conditions just have not been that good during those days I have checked it. But anyway it is also interesting to observe it also at urban QTH where audio is impossible. I made some measurements using a SDR-iQ and SpecLab just to check the best time to listen and the variation of the frequency. While the frequency can be seen rather well using the SpecLabs normal window, it is also easy to follow the signal level and the drift (abourt 1 kHz) using the SpecLab´s plotter window. As usual, the best time to listen has always been around the local sunset (at RX) and the sunrise at Sydney. The clip herewith shows that sometimes audio is good enaugh for an ID. The best reception I have had has been during a quick rise of solar wind.
73,TK video

Saturday, February 13, 2010

DX-Station of January: JOTR Akita 936


During this long solar minimum and maybe the best North Latitude reception conditions it was pretty easy to hear quite a few AM stations fom Japan even in Southern Finland with modest antennas. As reported earlier a number of these stations were audible around 10:30 - 14:00 UTC. The best time was usually around 11 utc up to 1320 (NHK2 local IDs) in December and in the beginning of January.
Although there were a few stations (heard for the first time by me) which were running with low power from 100 Watts (some NHK relays) to 1000 Watts, I decided to take this station ABS Akita Hoso JOTR 936 as a station of the month. I have never heard it in 1970´s when it was even easier to pick up some of these before the new frequency allocation in Asia. JOTR was first heard in December around 11 and 12 utc. But in January 10th the station had even better signal in the afternoon UTC.
Congratulations to ABS Akita Hoso!
おめでとう秋田放送!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

SDXL SUMMER MEETING 2010 6-8th August


King´s Village DX in co-operation with members from the PUDXK - dx-team and the Finnish DX-Association proudly invates all radio enthusiasts to the:
ANNUAL DX-SUMMER MEETING 2010 OF THE SDXL (Suomen DX-Liitto ry, Finnish DX Ass..
Time: 6th - 8th August 2010.
The Venue: Haapaveden Opisto, Haapavesi (Haapavesi Folk High School) at Haapavesi, Finland.
QTH:64.138345N,25.362961E (a map below).

The program will include the latest news from the world of MW-DXing, Propagation and SDR-receiver technology. There will be a listening post near by with many kind of receivers. Workshops of current questions in DXing and radio technology will be hold.

The meeting is open for all interested in radio related hobbies and it is not only for the members of SDXL ry. Special arrangements and program for Nordic and other International guests will be organized.

Please contact me for further details. A blog-page (mainly in Finnish) will contain more information and will be published soon.

The picture included here shows a view at the lake and an island (with a Camping place and restaurant)- one of the places of the evening programs during the meeting. It is dated excatly 1 year before the meeting (6th August 2009 at 00.00 Finnish Summer Time) and shows the lightning conditions. Feels like the first MW signals are due to arrive here.
73,TK


Näytä suurempi kartta

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Greetings from the Snow!


It seems this winter will become a record winter not only for good DX but as far as amount of snow is concerned. The snow has been accumulating up to about 40 cm now and there is more to come. The DX QTH is in the middle of snowy trees. BOG is under about 40 cm snow and my longwire seems to have problems in the forest.
The conditions seems to be "back in normal" without any big surprises in the end of January, let´s hope some better times until the next CH due to arrive around Feb 10.

Meanwile I have updated the list of Japanese MW stations logged from December 1st 2009 up to January 20 2010. The number of stations is now 70, I had forgetten a common JO-station JOER 1350. A few new were also noted in the beginning of January, like NHK-stations on 945 (NHK1) and 1467 (JOID Oita).
The list is at Google-docs (Japan list, times usually around 1055 to 1400 UTC)
Japan list

Saturday, January 23, 2010

DX-Station of December 2009: Radio Symban Australia


It is not often that a new station appears on Short Waves! Indeed short waves are still used at least in Australia, where we can hear ABC on 2310, 2325 and 2485. But last year a new station "Radio Symban" started also here on 2368.5 kHz. It was first heard in Europe by MR (Mauno Ritola) and soon many dxers tried to get in here on 120 mb. The carrier could be seen often on the frequency, but to hear the audio was rather difficult. Maybe partly because the power has been rather low around 150-250 Watts only. It seems the power has been at least some days a bit more (up to 500 Watts), but information from Australia says it is still no more than maximum about 240 Watts. Another reason which makes it difficult is the current reception conditions which favors more Northernly paths. Anyway I managed to get some audio (apparently relay of a Greek radio) in some evenings in December. The best time has been always the local sunrise around 19 utc. Later on, in January the station has been heard quite regularly and during some days of a minor geomagnetic disturbance and a quick rise of the solar wind the reception has been almost near the level of strong ABC outlets! The station has some local programming with spots etc just after 19.00 utc. Usually around 17-19 utc the program consists mainly Greek music.
Thank you also for the nice hadwritten QSL received from the station´s "QSL-manager". The station has a web-page and a working on-line feed of the program as well. Let´s hope it can run the full power later on to make it easier to listen to.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Examples of Far East DX- conditions

As an example of signals received in December from the Far East you can listen to the video at the December archive of old posts (22 Dec.) where you can hear typical signals of JOUB 774 and JOIF 1413.

In addition an example of signals on December 8 at 1200 UTC can be found at my 4shared page. It is a Perseus file of about 30 seconds at noon covering the mw-band. You can explore the widespread reception conditions as there are stations also from North America´s North West, Alaska and Hawaii and the Easternmost stations from the Philippines like DWCM 1160.9 kHz.
The link to the file (zipped, 30 seconds)is

SPR_091208-1154_01000kHz_001 115945 120015 .zip

There is also a 45 seconds file at the same time (12:59:45 - 13:00:15, 343 Mb WAV) at Guy Atkin´s blog http://fivebelow.squarespace.com/. Thank You Guy for adding the file to the archives!

Exploring Japan on MW - times they´ve changed


Japan on MW has been an interesting target for me since I started to listen to MW-signals from Asia. My first QTH in the Center of Finland was rather good for Asia during dark wintertimes.
In the era of reporting and QSL-hunting (70´s ... 80´s) I got about 30 QSL-cards and letters from Japanese MW-stations (NHK and commercial stations). Before the current mf-allocation they were pretty easy to hear on their 10 kHz spaced channels. It took about 20 years to get these 30 stations verified. I think in my old logbooks are about 40 stations heard. Some examples of the QSLs at the picture.

In December 2009 I tested how many of them can be heard in about month in this deep solar minumum. I recorded almost daily total mw-band at several TOH´s for 5-15 minutes (including several recordings around 1320 utc to get the NHK2-IDs). All recording were preprogrammed beforehand at my King´s Village QTH. Some days the program crashed because of the electricity problems (at rural areas there are sometimes short power blackouts - usually 1 seconds or so...) so there were some periods of several days without recording. I have now explored majority of the recordings. It seems conditions favoured Japan as was expected - during this deep minimum and almost total darkness even in Southern Finland, conditions towards North-West, North and North-East are going on daily. Example of these conditions is KUMU Hawaii which could be heard almost daily in Scandinavia.

The count of the stations heard from Japan (NHK´s partly IDed only as "NHK1/2", partly rather definite ID as being the only NHK on the channel). Commercial stations were IDed by the company initials (usually, as an example "KBC Radio" 1413 JOIF).
So during about 20 days recordings at around 11,12,13 and 14 UTC totally about 55 stations were heard. I could estimated that during the best days (like 8th December for example) one could get an ID of 30-40 stations during about 3 hours containing 4 recordings of 5 minutes each at the TOH and 1 minute at 1320 UTC! That is a difference - during 1900´s I had a TRIO 9R59DS receiver and some longwire antennas - now a Perseus SDR-receiver and a BOG antenna. So one can not compare the results of 1970´s - 1980´s to todays captures!

The list of the stations:
freq station remarks
567 JOIK NHK1, Sapporo no call id
594 JOAK NHK1, Tokyo/Shobu no call id
648 JOIG NHK1, Toyama no call id
666 JOBK NHK1, Osaka
693 JOAB NHK2, Tokyo/Shobu
729 JOCK NHK1, Nagoya no call id
747 JOIB NHK2, Sapporo no call id(*
774 JOUB NHK2, Akita
792 NHK1, tent. Embetsu (//Hokkaido NHK) no call id
828 JOBB NHK2, Osaka/Habikino
837 JOQK NHK1, Niigata no call id
864 JOXR ROK Radio Okinawa, Naha/Nanjo
873 JOGB NHK2, Kumamoto
927 NHK1
936 JOTR ABS Akita Hoso, Akita
954 JOKR TBS Tokyo Hoso, Tokyo/Toda
963 JOTG NHK1, Aomori local news
990 JORK NHK1, Kochi no call id
1008 JONR ABC Asahi Hoso, Kyoto
1017 JOLB NHK2, Fukuoka
1053 JOAR CBC Chubu-Nippon Hoso, Nagoya/Kuwana-Shi
1071 JOFK NHK1, Hiroshima no call id
1107 JOCF MBC Minami Nihon Hoso, Kagoshima
1107 JOMR MRO Hokoriku Hoso, Kanazawa
1116 JODR BSN Niigata Hoso, Niigata
1134 JOQR NCB Bunka Hoso, Tokyo/Kawaguchi
1179 JOOR MBS, Mainichi Hoso, Osaka
1197 JOFO RKB, RKB Mainichi Hoso, Kitakyushu Fukuoka
1224 JOJK NHK1, Kanazawa no call id
1233 JOUR NBC Nagasaki Hoso, Nagasaki
1233 JOGR RAB Aomori Hoso, Aomori
1242 JOLF NBS Nippon Hoso, Tokyo/Kisarazu
1260 JOIR TBC Tohoku Hoso, Sendai
1269 JOJR JRT Shikoku Hoso, Tokushima
1278 JOFR RKB Mainichi Hoso, Fukuoka
1287 JOHR HBC, Hokkaido Hoso, Sapporo
1314 JOUF OBC Radio Osaka, Osaka/Sakai-Shi
1332 JOSF Tokai Hoso, Nagoya
1368 JOHP NHK1, Takamatsu Kagawa no call id
1377 JOUC NHK2, Yamaguchi
1386 JOJB NHK2, Kanazawa
1386 JOKB NHK2, Okayama
1395 RKC, Kochi Hoso, Sukumo Kochi
1413 JOIF KBC-Kyushu Asahi Hoso, Fukuoka
1422 JORF RF, RF Radio Nippon, Yokohama
1431 JOZF GBS, Gifu Hoso, Gifu
1440 JOWF STV, Sapporo TV Hoso, Sapporo
1467 JOID NHK2, Oita / NHK2 Hokkaido (** no call id
1494 JOYR RSK, Sanyo Hoso, Okayama
1503 JOUK NHK1, Akita no call id
1512 JOZB NHK2, Matsuyama no call id
1521 JOTC NHK2, Aomori no call id
1584 JOQG NHK1, Fukaura Aomori no call id
1593 JOQB NHK2, Niigata
1602 JOSB NHK2, Kitakyushu Fukuoka
1602 NHK2, Embetsu //747 Sapporo

*) Sapporo NHK 747 nowadays no call at 1320 only "NHK"
**) poss. Different relays diff. Days, one day //Hokkaido channels

Ids: NHK usually at 1320 after the weather
Some NHK1 with local programs before 11 utc
Some NHK-stations "Ided" being the only one on the frequency
Commercial stations Ids with company inititials with some exceptions (like "Radio Kansai 1395")
56 stations logged Dec 1 - 31 2009 (updated list after check 15th Jan.)
Perseus sdr + 250 m BOG (under snow) to NE

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

SDR-Receiver tests Part II

I did some more tests and search of the latest SDR-radios & softwares during the Holiday Season. It seems there are something going on on several receiver / software manufactures on SDRs just now.

SDR-RADIO

This is a nice piece of software which obviously is in the development stage, but versions that I tested worked quite OK with a SDR-IQ-receiver. Obviously this is more intented to HAM-operators and IQ-compatibility is only one of the features of this softaware. The highlights of this are an integrated MP3-recorder and easy connectivity into Internet and remote use of the receiver (like IQ). However I could not find a good possibility to measure the exact carrier frequency like using the SpectraVue-software ( see earlier post "Part I" recarding the latest SpectraVue 3.03). More about SDR-RADIO on their web-pages.

SDR-IP and SpectraVue 3.03

It seems the release of the new SDR-IP-model will be in Q1 2010 and the current softaware version of SpectaVue 3.03 seems to support 2 Ms/s samplerate to achive IQ-recording of 1.8 MHz with the resolution of 0.95 Hz. The resolution enhancement is important to all of us who wants to really see and measure the carrier frequency to the last Herz. This feature have been discussed many times earlier (see the archives of earlier posts) as it is often important to visually examine the spectrum of several carriers on the tuned frequency. The latest version of the manual does not mention the support for Perseus (or other IQ-recordings) - as it was on an earlier version - an issue discussed sometimes with earlier versions of SpectraVue. It is very understandable for the software designer just to support RF-Space products. As of IP IP-board some other interesting options are at least: support for down converter of 88-108MHz (an internal 10 MHz locked downconverter).The SDR-IP utilizes straight TCP/IP and ethernet for all communications. This offers the highest possible performance due to the highly optimized ethernet drivers on PC, Mac and Linux systems. So different Operating Systems are supported. The 1.333 Mhz sample rate gives a very convenient 1.2 Mhz output (IQ) bandwith – just suited for a MW-dxer. At that sample rate the resolution is about 0.6 Hz. Let´s see when we get some real world tests of the new IP-model!


Win Radio - new model !

I was a bit surprized to get to know that also WinRadio has released a new model "coming soon". The presented Excalibur model seems to have a few interesting features like three independent channels (i.e. three receivers in one), all parameters can be set separately for each channel. Each channel can also record audio simultaneously and independently. Recording and playback are also provided at the output of the Digital Down-Converter, where an entire 2 MHz spectrum band can be recorded for later demodulation (seems to be real IQ-recording, not the "IF"-as in earlier models). The recording facility also features pre-buffering to avoid a loss of signal at the start of a transmission. A flexible Scheduler function makes it possible to program each channel separately, for unattended recording on preselected frequencies, at specified dates and times. There are not yet more information of the scheduler. However according to specs I have found that the maximum resolution is only 1.5 Hz which is not as good as that of Perseus or SpectraVue softwares. As there are no more pictures or information, you can not say if the carrier frequency can be "seen" exactly or measured by the software automatically. More information will be seen in the near future I hope.


So it seems this year we will see more happening in the field of constantly developing receivers!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Perseus Markers - just another try


During the Christmas period one of the favourite short wave DXing targets has always been the Papua-New Guinean stations. These are few still left on 90 mb. As I had no possibility to check them during their Christmas programs or the often longer New Year´s Evening shows I made a short preview recording a Perseus file 3200-3400 kHz on Dec 29th while visiting my DX-ing cottage.

Quite a few fellow DXers have been making graphs using the Markers Log - feature of the latest Perseus software (2.1h). One major problem to do the graphs is the file format - it does not write the markers loggings as a tabulated file but rather a vertical file one freyency after another (figure showing the format). I transferred all the rows to Excel, made a "manual transpose" of the three channels info into a horizontal table, made then a new file with only the right rows (every 3rd) and got finally a table where you can make a graph. It is a bit hard to explain but everyone knowing how to operate with Excel can do that. Maybe there are easier ways and easier softwares (I do not know how e.g. SciDavis can do that), but when you know how to do it it is rather easy with Excel as well.

The signal of 3365 Papuan was the strongest starting from about -85 dBm. The noise level using the BOG under 20 cm snow was rather low around -140...-150 dBm. The signals of 3260 and 3325 were a bit weaker. Note that although the graph shows 3260 going stronger that is not true: an utility station started after 2030 utc and occupied the channel. So using large spans with known signals could lead wrong information!
Finally you can listen to an example of PNG Madang 3260 recorded earlier this december (Dec 2nd)- the signal was quite strong during the sign on around 19utc! video