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KiwiSDR and recommendations for antennas and cables

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#1
I recently bought a KiwiSDR and it's my first SDR so far. I was wondering, what antennas you guys recommendation for it and whether the W6LVP antenna is truly good for it (it was listed on the KiwiSDR site as a recommended antenna, but it's a bit pricey for me (doable but pricy)). I'm trying to find signals in the lower frequencies and I'd like an antenna that can catch them.

Also, what sort of cables would I need to hook up between an antenna and the KiwiSDR? I noticed the W6LVP antenna didn't seem to have any cables included (and I'm not sure if other antennas include them either) so if anyone can help me with that, that'd be great. If it varies between SDRs, that'd be helpful info too. Thanks a lot for reading!
 

ka3jjz

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#2
Loops are a great choice if you are stuck in a HOA or have limited space available; there are literally dozens of good wire antenna designs out there. As a starter, it's hard to beat the PAR EF-SWL; however if you're a good builder, there are other designs you can build.

How much room have you got to play with? And be a lot more specific about the 'lower frequencies'. It's important because the recommendations for antennas change with the frequencies you want to hear

Mike
 

ka3jjz

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#3
Actually I think you need to start a bit closer to home, so to speak. First job is to clean up your RF environment; locate and if you can, neutralize sources of noise that will definitely be your enemy. Any good old portable AM radio is a good tool here; tune to a clear channel (has no station on it) and move it around where you are going to have your PC and SDR. PCs can be quite noisy ('dirty') due to many factors. Do some homework on this first will get you set for the next step

Mike
 

w2xq

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#4
RR member mbott (in OH) has a Wellbrook Active Loop ALA1530LNP on his KiwiSDR and I have poked around LW a number of evenings. He has a moderately high noise level. Tuning around the NDBs has proven to be much better than I expected, listening to signals well below 180 kc. I can hear Cuba on 5025 an hour or two before sunset. In the late evening hours 41m and 31m come alive as the Eastern Europe and the Middle East broadcasters begin their morning and midday broadcasts. Aa an enduser, I am surprised at what I can hear on his setup. HTH a bit.
 
Joined
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Messages
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#6
Loops are a great choice if you are stuck in a HOA or have limited space available; there are literally dozens of good wire antenna designs out there. As a starter, it's hard to beat the PAR EF-SWL; however if you're a good builder, there are other designs you can build.

How much room have you got to play with? And be a lot more specific about the 'lower frequencies'. It's important because the recommendations for antennas change with the frequencies you want to hear

Mike
Sorry for the delay! And the frequency range I'm going for is the HF and lower. I'm hoping to keep it indoors but I can try to set it up outside my window. Does the height of the antenna matter or can I keep it relatively low? I live with my sister and I'm not sure I can hook up a really tall thing without her permission. Thank you all for responding!
 

ka3jjz

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#7
Indoor antennas aren't really ideal, because they will pick up on every noise source in the vicinity. But if you are limited to indoors, then loops really become your best choice. There are now several choices that cover HF and lower, and even some you can build yourself. Be sure to put them as far away from your PC and other devices as possible. You may even find that a line isolator to remove any common mode noise might be beneficial. Our loops wiki is here;

Loops - The RadioReference Wiki

Mike
 
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