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Thursday, 29 December 2016

QSL cards to buro and 6W call sign

About 1000 buro cards just went out.... spread across club log, c5, 6w, sm and various IOTA trips. If the card is for an IOTA and the ref and island are hand written, that means the qso will be going up on club log for qso matching. Not specially printing qsl cards with IOTA ref etc for EU locations now as electronic confirmation can be obtained through IOTA/club log matching.

Please note 6W/M1KTA is NOT the correct call sign format. For LoTW confirmation of 6W etc then M1KTA/6W is the correct call please don't keep asking for LoTW uploads as ARRL will not issue a certificate for the wrong call sign.

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

ZL/M1KTA

I'll be on the bands over next month or so as ZL/M1KTA.
Possible I might activate IOTA but please listen

Friday, 23 December 2016

Noise cancelling headphones

I was asked about these recently and there is also a thread over on CDXC about these and general noise reduction.

There are TWO types of headphones that do noise cancellation... active and passive. I have and use BOTH.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01F3DKK7Q
https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61blQHvMRXL._SL1000_.jpg


Is a cheap version of an active headset. The way these work is they sample the external audio and then play it back INSIDE the ear phones out of phase so the background sound is 'removed'. These are at the budget end but are surprisingly good for £30 and remove about 70-80% of the background noise.
Used with ear plugs if you want to sleep they block out 99% of all noise so an infant crying in an airline cabin (why on earth do people fly with a baby on holiday?) can cry until you land you don't hear a thing.

The passive headphones I use are in ear Genius noise cancelling headphones. They work by not letting the back ground noise into the ear canal.

There are much more expensive sets about but I didn't want to spend >£200+ on them.


Thursday, 22 December 2016

Noise Cancellation

Perhaps for those with a want to try and homebrew stuff... ok the devices are a bit older than those in the LZ1AQ active antenna setup http://lz1aq.signacor.com/index.php.

http://users.tpg.com.au/users/ldbutler/NoiseCancelling.htm
or a more recent derivation:
http://home.telkomsa.net/jeanward/noise_canceller.html
Along with the hint (think it was Clive? GM3POI) you make sure you isolate the TX antenna on RX so you do not  add noise from that source.

At Cornwall QTH, used 1m copper pipe loop made from section of LDF-450 with a broadcast cap across the gap, adjust for maximum noise (odd you actually want to peak the noise!). Usually the noise is largest when broad side to the loop too so you can DF it a bit too. I use J310 as the FET not the MPF102 as they were not available at the time.

I found worked better for point noise sources not broad 'all around' noise. I was chasing contacts on 80m at the time and couldn't hear the signals for the noise. BTW I am taking similar to E5 as there are local 80m fun and games.

Interesting section on LZ1AQ site http://lz1aq.signacor.com/docs/dr/deversity-reception.htm where he uses SDR/Softrocks so don't forget to check out the links he gives too.

Monday, 12 December 2016

LoTW on Linux

I was asked... does LoTW work under Linux...

YES

So here you go on one of my own systems (that did not have it installed first)

$sudo apt update
Hit:1 http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu xenial InRelease
Hit:2 http://mirrors.coreix.net/mariadb/repo/10.0/ubuntu xenial InRelease     
Hit:3 http://ppa.launchpad.net/stefansundin/truecrypt/ubuntu xenial InRelease 
Hit:4 http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial InRelease                       
Get:5 http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-updates InRelease [102 kB]      
Ign:6 http://dl.google.com/linux/chrome/deb stable InRelease                  
Get:7 http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-backports InRelease [102 kB]    
Hit:8 http://dl.google.com/linux/chrome/deb stable Release                    
Get:9 http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-security InRelease [102 kB]    
Ign:10 http://packages.linuxmint.com sarah InRelease                          
Ign:11 http://download.webmin.com/download/repository sarge InRelease         
Hit:12 http://repo.percona.com/apt xenial InRelease                           
Hit:13 http://packages.linuxmint.com sarah Release                            
Hit:16 http://download.webmin.com/download/repository sarge Release           
Fetched 306 kB in 0s (584 kB/s)
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree      
Reading state information... Done
1 package can be upgraded. Run 'apt list --upgradable' to see it.
# sudo apt install trustedqsl
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree      
Reading state information... Done
The following additional packages will be installed:
  libwxbase3.0-0v5 libwxgtk3.0-0v5
The following NEW packages will be installed
  libwxbase3.0-0v5 libwxgtk3.0-0v5 trustedqsl
0 to upgrade, 3 to newly install, 0 to remove and 1 not to upgrade.
Need to get 7,226 kB of archives.
After this operation, 41.7 MB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n] y
Get:1 http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial/universe amd64 libwxbase3.0-0v5 amd64 3.0.2+dfsg-1.3 [971 kB]
Get:2 http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial/universe amd64 libwxgtk3.0-0v5 amd64 3.0.2+dfsg-1.3 [4,342 kB]
Get:3 http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial/universe amd64 trustedqsl amd64 2.2-2 [1,913 kB]
Fetched 7,226 kB in 0s (9,912 kB/s)  
Selecting previously unselected package libwxbase3.0-0v5:amd64.
(Reading database ... 293156 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack .../libwxbase3.0-0v5_3.0.2+dfsg-1.3_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking libwxbase3.0-0v5:amd64 (3.0.2+dfsg-1.3) ...
Selecting previously unselected package libwxgtk3.0-0v5:amd64.
Preparing to unpack .../libwxgtk3.0-0v5_3.0.2+dfsg-1.3_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking libwxgtk3.0-0v5:amd64 (3.0.2+dfsg-1.3) ...
Selecting previously unselected package trustedqsl.
Preparing to unpack .../trustedqsl_2.2-2_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking trustedqsl (2.2-2) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.23-0ubuntu5) ...
Processing triggers for desktop-file-utils (0.22-1ubuntu5) ...
Processing triggers for mime-support (3.59ubuntu1) ...
Processing triggers for man-db (2.7.5-1) ...
Setting up libwxbase3.0-0v5:amd64 (3.0.2+dfsg-1.3) ...
Setting up libwxgtk3.0-0v5:amd64 (3.0.2+dfsg-1.3) ...
Setting up trustedqsl (2.2-2) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.23-0ubuntu5) ...

Then just run the app and restore the certificates etc from the tqslconfig.tbk file (I use dropbox to copy mine off machine safely)


Sunday, 11 December 2016

Powercut Friday... grrr

Seems the power cut on Friday (only 4 mins or so it seems) shut off lots in the shack and workshop. I was wondering why stuff was in a wierd state when realised that the shack webserver had restarted.

Half is on UPS other half isn't.

Time to buy some new UPS I think, don't really want to bodge it by adding a car battery to extend runtime as the UPS are line interactive. 500VA units look cheap as chips these days.

New QSL Scanner

Just RX and new QSL scanner as beginning to have too many QSL to store.

Was a comment but here in the text too now...

Asked by a few what it is.... Canon P-208II. Small and light weight. Run on the Mac and Windows logging PC no problem with the software they include. Linux was/is still messing with, no Canon support for it..... It creates/operates as a standard TWAIN scanner. I find able to feed in a stack of cards pretty quickly too... and it creates either a jpg for each side (as here, or can be TIFF or GIF images) or each card saves both front and back as a single pdf file. Scans BOTH sides at the same time. 600dpi so plenty of resolution.

You can feed in those double up cards too, just unfold before scanning.

It will handle up to A4, so started to process all the licence files too.

Just a section of first trials from latest batch from buro... maybe you are in there? Hope to process all cards over time.