Thursday, March 19, 2009

Junior learns to listen

..I heard static, but saw nothing on the Panadapter. Wait, is that the top of a signal there at the very bottom poking up? I went into PowerSDR and changed the lower limit on the Panadapter to -180 dB and there it is - the noise floor I was looking for. I know the sensitivity of the FLEX-3000 was going to be greater with the high gain preamp, but it was down @ -165 dB with the radio connected to a dummy load. That seems a bit low and I'll run through some of the calibration tests later this week to make sure. Turning off the preamp made the noise floor rise to a more reasonable level. Boy that was a momentary scare that I really was not expecting.

OK, so Junior has ears. Nice. I switched to the 20m dipole and the receiver came to life with signals. The receive audio is VERY good. I can't tell much difference between it and the FLEX-5000. I listened to a bunch of phone and CW QSOs on 20m. There are no artifacts I can hear in the audio, but I really have not listened that closely. Junior and I are still getting acquainted.

I am still getting used to the preamp. It has a lot of gain is isn't necessary to use it all the time. It is just another characteristic of the FLEX-3000 I am going to have to get to know better.

The receiver checks out fine. Now it is time to re-connect the dummy load and give the ol' transmitter a try.

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