Power outages can be wonderful.


Gord Seifert
 

  I woke up at about 4:30 am and Google Mini, when I asked, would not tell me the time. Then I noticed that all of the thousands of leds around the house were not lit. No power in the neighborhood. So I grabbed the laptop, connected an Airspy HF+ Discovery, with attached YouLoop antenna, and started up SDR Console. I was treated to a wonderful listening experience. The listening reminded me of the way it was back in the late '50s with my then new Heathkit AR-3 and Q Mulitiplier. A beautiful, velvety smooth, quiet background with strong signals popping up everywhere. There were nearly a dozen locator beacons below the AM Broadcast band, most of which would normally be near or below the noise level. Almost no interference on AM Broadcast at all. I wish power outages could be scheduled! The noise is not all in my house.

   Simon, thanks for SDR Console! I like it more than SDR# in almost all situations. It is much simpler and more intuitive to me. One major difference I see is that NR3 noise reduction boosts the volume a bit, where SDR#'s IF Noise Reduction cuts the volume a good bit and then the audio distorts badly when the volume is raised to compensate. I also really like the IF display in Console V3. It makes fine tuning and adjustment of the filter much easier without requiring zooming the main display. Thanks again.

   Lastly, to anyone considering a Raspberry Pi, a warning. The power block supplied with the CanaKit Pi 4 package is the noisiest thing I have ever plugged in in my house. It emits a very wide band of hash centered around 900 kHz, pretty much wiping out any signals anywhere near there and making any listening a complete waste of time. And it is hard to locate as well. It seemed to go back through the power lines and show up strongest at the power panel and the safety grounding rod. It is designed for 3.5 amps at 5 volts,  but it is useless being as noisy as it is.

   Regards,
   Gord

 


Simon Brown
 

Gord,

 

SDR Console compliments SDR# - each has strengths. As for low-noise listening – set up a remote receiver. My own location here is very quiet, that’s a reason why a bought it. Listening is a pleasure.

 

As for the Pi PUS – maybe ferrites? Failing that buy a proper PSU, that’s what I use for my Pluto.

 

Simon Brown, G4ELI

https://www.sdr-radio.com

 

From: main@SDR-Radio.groups.io <main@SDR-Radio.groups.io> On Behalf Of Gord Seifert
Sent: 18 May 2021 18:59
To: main@SDR-Radio.groups.io
Subject: [SDR-Radio] Power outages can be wonderful.

 

  I woke up at about 4:30 am and Google Mini, when I asked, would not tell me the time. Then I noticed that all of the thousands of leds around the house were not lit. No power in the neighborhood. So I grabbed the laptop, connected an Airspy HF+ Discovery, with attached YouLoop antenna, and started up SDR Console. I was treated to a wonderful listening experience. The listening reminded me of the way it was back in the late '50s with my then new Heathkit AR-3 and Q Mulitiplier. A beautiful, velvety smooth, quiet background with strong signals popping up everywhere. There were nearly a dozen locator beacons below the AM Broadcast band, most of which would normally be near or below the noise level. Almost no interference on AM Broadcast at all. I wish power outages could be scheduled! The noise is not all in my house.

   Simon, thanks for SDR Console! I like it more than SDR# in almost all situations. It is much simpler and more intuitive to me. One major difference I see is that NR3 noise reduction boosts the volume a bit, where SDR#'s IF Noise Reduction cuts the volume a good bit and then the audio distorts badly when the volume is raised to compensate. I also really like the IF display in Console V3. It makes fine tuning and adjustment of the filter much easier without requiring zooming the main display. Thanks again.

   Lastly, to anyone considering a Raspberry Pi, a warning. The power block supplied with the CanaKit Pi 4 package is the noisiest thing I have ever plugged in in my house. It emits a very wide band of hash centered around 900 kHz, pretty much wiping out any signals anywhere near there and making any listening a complete waste of time. And it is hard to locate as well. It seemed to go back through the power lines and show up strongest at the power panel and the safety grounding rod. It is designed for 3.5 amps at 5 volts,  but it is useless being as noisy as it is.

   Regards,
   Gord

 


--
- + - + -
Please use https://forum.sdr-radio.com:4499/ when posting questions or problems.


Shaun Vincent Hopkins
 
Edited

About 4 years ago I was working in Billrica, just outside of Boston and staying in a hotel for the duration. I took my Perseus with me hoping to do some good DXing in the night hours and weekends. It wasn't to be.

Oh boy do they have dirty, noisy electrics. Literally useless reception. Then the snow fell. And kept falling. Then the power went out. Then AM came alive! I still have the wideband recording what a massive difference and it was the only night that had a power cut where I was.

It was amazing how the signals jumped out of the noise.

Dar-es-Salaam is another electrically dirty place. 3 months working in Oyster Bay, looking forwards to good DX and no AM/MW to speak of. Right on the Indian Ocean beach and not able to receive more than around 5 local stations due to the noise. I wish they had had a blackout but it wasn't to be, and I had a mag loop antenna then as well.

73's
Hoppy


George Stein - NJ3H
 

Hi Guys, 

This is what i get from 0.5 mhz to 22 mhz. 

I a
Have used all the search tricks walking 


around the neighborhood and cutting my own power. No luck at all. The hiss is constant. Ruined a 55 year hobby. 

Regards, 
George, NJ3H

Redmond, Oregon USA



On Tue, May 18, 2021 at 12:05 PM, Shaun Vincent Hopkins
<zbz5@...> wrote:

[Edited Message Follows]

About 4 years ago I was working in Billrica, just outside of Boston and staying in a hotel for the duration. I took my Perseus with me hoping to do some good DXing in the night hours and weekends. It wasn't to be.


Oh boy do they have dirty, noisy electrics. Literally useless reception. Then the snow fell. And kept falling. Then the power went out. Then AM came alive! I still have the wideband recording what a massive difference and it was the only night that had a power cut where I was.

It was amazing how the signals jumped out of the noise.

Dar-es-Salaam is another electrically dirty place. 3 months working in Oyster Bay, looking forwards to good DX and no AM/MW to speak of. Right on the Indian Ocean beach and not able to receive more than around 5 local stations due to the noise. I wish they had had a blackout but it wasn't to be, and I had a mag loop antenna then as well.

73's
Hoppy


BobS
 

With regard to your noisy power supply, yes, those cheap switching power supplies can be terrible. I bought a couple of power supplies a while ago for my Sony ICF-SW55 and ICF-SW77 radios (they use the same voltage and plug). As soon as I plug them in, the entire AM broadcast band disappears. I even experimented with so many ferrite chokes that I only had about three inches of wire left! And it had no effect.

And I live next to a house with a solar-heated pool. I'm basically screwed.

One thing that you can do is look to get a decent 12V (13.8V) linear power supply, the type that is used by amateur radio. Sometimes even the switching power supplies are well-filtered too. Once you get that clean voltage, you can pretty easily get DC-to-DC adapters to convert the voltage down to 9V or 6V or whatever. My power supply even has two USB ports for 5V power. Since my Sony ICF-2010 runs on 4.5V, I can get clean power into it just with a patched USB cable.

Also watch out for wireless phone chargers!

Bob, W4RLS


N2CBU
 

On 5/18/21 3:46 PM, George Stein - NJ3H via groups.io wrote:
This is what i get from 0.5 mhz to 22 mhz.
With NB/NR off; audible through 54MHz: https://n2cbu.com/RFI/VID_20201109_110348.mp4

Wanna trade? :D

Utility denies any/all involvement/responsibility. Hoping for a massive EMP.


George Stein - NJ3H
 

My goodness, that is really bad. There gas to be a neighbor running something delightful. I presume you have walked the area with a portable with the smallest antenna trying to pinpoint. I am on my third pair of shoes doing that. 

Good luck with that. Keep us posted on any results. 

Regards, 
George 




On Wed, May 19, 2021 at 10:48 AM, N2CBU
<listmember@...> wrote:
On 5/18/21 3:46 PM, George Stein - NJ3H via groups.io wrote:
> This is what i get from 0.5 mhz to 22 mhz.

With NB/NR off; audible through 54MHz: https://n2cbu.com/RFI/VID_20201109_110348.mp4

Wanna trade?  :D

Utility denies any/all involvement/responsibility. Hoping for a massive EMP.







N2CBU
 

On 5/19/21 2:12 PM, George Stein - NJ3H via groups.io wrote:
There has to be a neighbor running something delightful
I wish it were that simple/easy. Hotspot is at an intersection about 1000 feet away; obliterates auto's AM radio in
the surrounding two block area. Nothing visually or audibly obvious; RFI sounds a bit like a genny or a motor but none
apparent. Two poles each with a rusty pig on em, and on the next corner (further away) is what looks like a surge
suppressor atop another pole. Apparently the overhead wires are acting as antennas so it's hard to pinpoint.

I don't have a handheld multimode V/UHF radio. :(

Utility swears they hear/see/know nothing, which unfortunately is an honest accurate self-assessment. (ConEd, need I
say more? - rhetorical question.)

EMP, micro-nova, etc, would be a blessing. :D


oldjackbob@...
 

@N2CBU, that's the second time you've expressed support for an EMP (even "a massive EMP") in this thread.

You're starting to make me wonder about you.

Just sayin.

Mark


Gord Seifert
 

That is unbelievable. No trade!
 
 
  A few years back I had a LOT of noise (but nowhere near as bad as yours) that I was sure was not in my house because I had opened the breaker in the basement so that nothing in my place had any power to mess with. Eventually I found that I could follow the noise on the power line it out to the pole on the street with a hand held multiband radio (Tecsun PL310et - good radio and inexpensive), and I could follow it back from that pole to the house next door as well. I got a guy out from the power company and showed him what I had found. He checked the equipement and transformer on the pole and, of course, found no problem. A few months later I noticed a truck next door delivering a new freezer and taking an old one away. The noise went with it. No more problem. 
 
 
  If I were in your situation I would be talking with your power company again. I can't believe they would not want to help with something that severe. Or... take a big truck and take out those poles where the problem seems to be centered. Bet the noise would stop!  ;-)
 
 
  Regards,
 
  Gord
 


jdow
 

If it is a power line a very directional microphone can often zero in on it. You hear the frying and crackling.

{^_^}

On 20210520 05:59:24, N2CBU wrote:
On 5/19/21 2:12 PM, George Stein - NJ3H via groups.io wrote:
There has to be a neighbor running something delightful
I wish it were that simple/easy. Hotspot is at an intersection about 1000 feet away; obliterates auto's AM radio in
the surrounding two block area. Nothing visually or audibly obvious; RFI sounds a bit like a genny or a motor but none
apparent. Two poles each with a rusty pig on em, and on the next corner (further away) is what looks like a surge
suppressor atop another pole. Apparently the overhead wires are acting as antennas so it's hard to pinpoint.

I don't have a handheld multimode V/UHF radio. :(

Utility swears they hear/see/know nothing, which unfortunately is an honest accurate self-assessment. (ConEd, need I
say more? - rhetorical question.)

EMP, micro-nova, etc, would be a blessing. :D