Friday, July 31, 2015

RFSpace CloudIQ samples 1500 kHz!

It didn't take long for RFSpace to do a firmware update to allow sampling of 1500 useable kHz with 16 bits. For the MW DX-er, this is indeed good news!

Sunday, July 05, 2015

RFSpace CloudIQ: Sensitivity & I/Q Bandwidth

Sensitivity may not be an important issue for many DX-ers, especially if they live in a high signal level environment. To me, sensitivity is an important issue, and I always make sure to measure the sensitivity levels of my receivers.

Up until now, all SDRs have been somewhat inferior to the best conventional receivers. Such as the NRD-525 (-114 dBm) and the R-390A (-116 dBm).

My SDRs of various guises have weighed in at -93 to - 106 dBm, with the exception of the Winradio G33DDC which made the -110 dBm mark with the preamp engaged.

RFSpace promised the CloudIQ to be considerably more sensitive that the SDR-IQ, and indeed we have a new SDR winner of the weak signals prize. The sensitivity was a uniform -111 dBm from 500 kHz (my lowest measurement) to 20 MHz (my highest). The measurements were done in AM mode, 6 kHz bandwidth, 400 Hz tone into 30 % modulation.

Pieter Ibelings at RFSpace informed me that they had spent a lot of time on the matching of the ADC. Evidently their efforts paid off.
The 19 meter band on the CloudIQ
The I/Q sample rate maxes out at 1 MHz, 24 bits. Now, this is a little less than desired for recording the MW band for later analysis, as 160 kHz on the 540-1700 kHz range is missing; 173 kHz for the European/Asian 531-1704 kHz range. The older NetSDR also has a 1 MHz, 24-bit limit, but in addition it has two 16-bit bandwidths, 1.3 and 1.6 MHz. 

I sincerely hope that the CloudIQ will be given a similar option.

CloudIQ I/Q bandwidth (NetSDR bandwidth for comparison in green frame)

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

New Toy

A new radio is ready for testing. I was lucky enough to be among those who got the first batch of 100 or so receivers, and I will look forward to testing it the coming weekend. For anyone not familiar with the CloudIQ, here's the story:

More as it happens.

Recent Verifications

(Well, not so recent... since March actually)

WGVA Geneva NY 1240
WAEB Allentown PA 790
WMAL Washington DC 630
WMLM St. Louis MI 1520
WMEL Cocoa Beach FL 1300
WDAE Tampa Bay FL 620
WRTA Altoona PA 1240
WTVL Waterville ME 1490 (tnx OJS!)
KNEU Roosevelt UT 1250