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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 02-15-2017, 9:23 PM
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Also keep in mind with the near field high level of AM Broadcast the energy may not even be coming in the antenna feed??

You could have AM coupling up the AC power line, or getting directly into the audio amplifier circuit.

So you may want to experiment with putting a 50 Ohm terminator on the antenna feed and then listening for the AM transmitter on frequencies you have heard it. This could help narrow down if all the AM broadcast is coming in the antenna feed or via another route.

I have had PLENTY of situations where AM radio broadcast were picked up on phone or audio equipment, items that had no RF sections what so ever.

There are also times when filters are required and careful consideration needs to be given to specs.

I have a few very high power FM Broadcast stations in my area and finally found a reasonably priced 9 pole FM Broadcast filter than I needed to put on the input of my LNA to block out overload and intermod. It works great and my wideband LNA feeds my wideband radio.
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by hth999 View Post
I just called Clifton Laboratories to order the Medium Wave reject Filter, and I spoke to a women who said that Jack Smith has passed away, and obviously the filters are not being made. I thought I would let the group know, so this women ( not sure if it was his wife ) gets any more phone calls for orders.


NO WAY!!! R.I.P. Jack


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Old 02-16-2017, 2:09 AM
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I was one of the first to have the AR-DV1 in the US and posted several early comments. Also have a of videos of AR-DV1 here in Los Angeles. Most people who followed my comments over the first few months know that I was less than impressed with the performance for a radio in its price range. I also discussed these issues in person with Taka at AOR in Torrance.
One of the first things I experienced was AM 640 KFI 50 KW whose antenna is 2 miles from my house basically making the receiver useless all the way up to 16 Mhz. However, use of PAR AM BCB filter really cleans things up. Also, if your interested in still listening to some MW AM, I find that using a simple MFJ-956 tuner allows me to kind of notch KFI or KNX out and listen to other AM stations. With the tuner, I can actually listen to a station on 660 Khz in eastern Arizona quite well. Without the tuner, KFI wipes out the entire AM band.
So the use of filters or a tuner will definitely help. That said, I rarely use the AR-DV1. Not going to do what my 536HP, TRX-2, or any other decent scanner will accomplish. An for MW/SW, certainly no where close say to my Perseus or ELAD FDM-S2 SDRs. With an RSP PRO2, need to use filters to clean up crud from AM powerhouse stations, but with filter or tuner in line, certainly equal, if not better performance than AR-DV1.
With ham rigs like TS-590S and ICOM-756PRO, never have an issue with broadcast overload. Can often hear stuff on 630 or 650 Khz just below or above KFI without much problem By the way, KFI is +4 Dbm on my SDRs. Even with Perseus or ELAD, need at least 10 db attenuation.
Also looking forward to reviews of new ICOM 8600, but will be waiting and not in line to be one of the first. No trunking and no DMR are drawbacks. I understand no trunking on a receiver, but no DMR, only dPMR. What gives.
In this day of SDR technology and DSD-Plus, you can buy a 536HP and RSP-PRO2, set up DSDPlus, and have a pretty nice set up. I will say that the AR-DV1 picks up weaker stuff than the 536HP or TRX-2 on high VHF or UHF, but scanning and searching still pretty useless. If I really want good quality high VHF or airband for a change, my FDM-400 or IC-5100 will do just fine.
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Old 02-16-2017, 2:20 AM
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Should also add that PAR FM and different high VHF filters (eg, 152 Mhz) very helpful with radios like GREs and new Whistlers. Unidens seem all right without, but sometimes a filter helps. For long wave, use a low pass PAR filter that is set for 640 MHz after talking with Dale, and can attenuate KFI by almost 50 to 60 dB. Helpful for some long wave NDBs.
Never really used much of these filters when just on ham radio, but when getting into monitoring, especially with much more wide-open front end receivers like scanners or SDRs, really make a difference. Finally, I did not know Jack Smith, but my condolences to his family, friends, and all those posting who knew him. RIP.
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Old 02-16-2017, 5:45 PM
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I think Alex_S summed it up best in his post:

"The DV1 is a nice, handy general coverage receiver for folks that can't afford astronomical prices. But don't expect miracles at that price point."
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Old 02-16-2017, 9:01 PM
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I just about wish I would waited and just bought me a whistler trx-2 instead of buying the ar-dv1. The ar-dv1 does not give me the digital modes I need. Our local city police dept just switched to nxdn and the ar-dv1 will not receive it. I tried using dsd+ with the aux jack in the back of the rsdio run into a line of of a laptop, u can't use it over white noise very well. It will show what mode it's receiving, but , u can't understsnd the audio very well. If my mind don't change, I may sell my ar-dv1 and buy me a trx-2, all o need is p25, and nxdn96 . We have nothing using dmr or anything.
For hf I will just use my icom 746. And there's hardly any digital ham stuff I csn pick up .
I almost agree , the sr-dv1 is becoming out dated very quickly, cause they don't give a firmware update to pick up modes other radios already have.
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Old 02-17-2017, 12:34 PM
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I'm not sure if many broadband receivers/scanners work in proximity to high power AM/FM broadcast stations. I have two FM stations about 1.5 miles away and the FM stations signal measured on my discone antenna is -30dbm. That's enough to screw up a lot of radios. My RS PRO 652 wouldn't work on aircraft band and NOAA weather was also NG.

The solution was this:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Broadcast-FM-Band-Stop-Filter-88-108-MHz-FM-Trap-by-RTL-SDR-Blog-/282265486654?hash=item41b855853e:g:7BEAAOSwNRdX~vJ 2

This filter looks to have more attenuation than the PAR FM filter or the Optoelectronics FM Notch. I've checked all three filters with a Spectrum Analyzer/Tracking Generator and the RTL-SDR notch looks the best (and the cheapest!) Cost is $16.00! It fixed a lot of problems for me. Gonna order a few more.

Dave
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Old 02-17-2017, 1:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesO View Post
Also keep in mind with the near field high level of AM Broadcast the energy may not even be coming in the antenna feed??

You could have AM coupling up the AC power line, or getting directly into the audio amplifier circuit.

So you may want to experiment with putting a 50 Ohm terminator on the antenna feed and then listening for the AM transmitter on frequencies you have heard it. This could help narrow down if all the AM broadcast is coming in the antenna feed or via another route.

I have had PLENTY of situations where AM radio broadcast were picked up on phone or audio equipment, items that had no RF sections what so ever.

There are also times when filters are required and careful consideration needs to be given to specs.

I have a few very high power FM Broadcast stations in my area and finally found a reasonably priced 9 pole FM Broadcast filter than I needed to put on the input of my LNA to block out overload and intermod. It works great and my wideband LNA feeds my wideband radio.
Same here. I have problems with an AM station energizing the telephone wiring in my house. I finally figured they were resonant and took steps to alter the electrical length. Chokes were little help.
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Old 02-17-2017, 1:39 PM
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I have been very happy with anything from this seller on ebay, user ID iseeabluewhale. He communicates well, will make runs of things he may not have currently available and has a lot of other good filters and amplifiers for a good price.

This FM notch filter was the best I have found so far with 85dB of rejection - FM Notch Filter 88-108MHz for SDR; Excellent Rejection 85dB; Bandstop; 9th order | eBay
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Old 02-27-2017, 2:48 PM
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I bought the PAR FM filter ( Dale at PAR made me a custom filter, greatly attenuating 92.5, 98.7, and 95.7 ) These very very strong FM stations were making Airband and 2 Meters difficult to impossible to monitor. Now with this PAR filter, the ARDV-1 works well. What a difference in performance!!. Additionally, I ordered PAR's AM Broadcast Filter, this attenuates the AM Broadcast band, and virtually eliminates any problems with the signals getting up into the HF area. With this filter, I can now monitor the HAM bands, Shortwave or anything from 160 - 6 Meters. It works well. I was surprised at how well the ARDV-1 receives SSB or Ham bands. I was able to copy multiple rag chewing on 80, 40 and 20 meters. Looks like I will keep the radio. I still don't understand why AOR didn't incorporate better bandpass filters into this radio. I know about design compromises, and money to be saved here and there. But why have many different LCD colors for the keypad? Use the money saved from that idea, and use it on the PCB board. Just my opinion...I think AOR does some strange things. Makes you scratch your head and say " What were they thinking " ??
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Old 03-01-2017, 11:13 PM
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The DV1 is certainly NOT the worst radio ever commercially produced. I would say that one has to go back 50+ years or so, to the infamous Kuhn 353B (although looking back to 1965 or so, it may have been way ahead of its time). Nor is the DV1 the best radio radio ever produced---- for that, take a look at the Icom R9500 (at about 10x the price of the DV1).

But the DV1 is certainly one of the most novel receivers ever marketed. And, at least to me, one of the more addictive radios that I've ever used. So much so, that when I realized that mine was in need of a repair (just under the warranty period), that before I sent it in, I was fortunate enough to find a second unit pretty much in mint condition and at an excellent price so that I would not be without a DV1 for even a day.

What makes the unit so addictive? The wide band frequency coverage for one--- covering 100 KHz to 1300 MHz offers up a "smorgasbord" of listening excitement, from the LF ham bands, to foreign broadcast activity to a bit of HF trans-Atlantic aircraft activity.

I'm sure I don't need to delve to deeply into the activity on the VHF and UHF bands, except to say that they DV1 covers almost all of the digital modes presently in use by both the ham radio and business band users. And while the unit doesn't scan in any conventional way, it has enough unique scan functions available to make for interesting listening combinations.

I think that the bottom line here is that the DV1 has become one of the "de-facto" standard receivers in any serious monitoring activity. Given the price point vs. the features, perhaps not "one of the", but "the one and only" de facto standard that you will find.
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Old 03-04-2017, 3:28 AM
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MStep - does the radio cover down to 100KHz with good results? I heard it slowly rolls off below 500 KHz and was pretty useless at LF. I'm about to pull the trigger on a DV1 and it would be nice to know. It's not a deal-breaker as I use an SDR for LF listening anyway. Thanks.
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Old 03-04-2017, 6:27 AM
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I tried the AR-DV1 a few times with LW NDBs and worked so so. But my Perseus and ham rigs are better. I'm glad people are finding that the AM and FM filters are helping. I noted the same thing early on about 18 months ago when was one of the first to own and delve into the AR-DV1. Without the filters, forget it, pretty useless, especially on SW/HF amateur bands. With AM filter, decent, not great, but decent. If you want a good VHF/UHF scanner, but a top notch scanner. If you want a top notch receiver for LW and AM, hard to beat the Perseus IMO with its great record features. For amateur, buy a good radio. The ICOM 756PRO I had was great as a general coverage receiver.
But for a 100 Khz to 1.3 Ghz receiver that certainly has a lot of different modes, I suppose its hard to beat the AR-DV1 at the $1200 price point providing you use a good AM and FM filter like PAR on the front end.
We will see what the R8600 comes up with. At about $2100, there may still be compromises on a receiver like that. Maybe not, but I suspect many will still need a good AM and FM filter to get really good performance. We shall see (hear) when they start to hit the market.
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Old 03-04-2017, 8:33 AM
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I get the impression that most people who are suffering BC band overload effects live in the USA, where (I think) it's not uncommon to have one or more 50 KW BC stations relatively close. This must put any receiver under strain.
Here in the UK, our big nationals (up to a couple of hundred KW) are sited way out in the countryside, so by the time their signals arrive at most listeners' homes they are not such a threat. Our Local Radio stations which are much closer in are usually rated at no more than a KW or two, and often just a few hundred watts.
ATM I'm using an SDRPlay RSP-2 receiver which has a chip-based front end and an ADC dynamic range of only 72dB, and I don't have any problems here. On LW/MW/HF the front end filter may as well not be there, as it covers 0 to 12 MHz! Antenna is a Wellbrook loop which can deliver some pretty beefy sigs. If the DV1 can deliver this kind of performance I'll be fairly happy.
Just rambling, sorry.
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Old 03-04-2017, 8:16 PM
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MStep - does the radio cover down to 100KHz with good results? I heard it slowly rolls off below 500 KHz and was pretty useless at LF. I'm about to pull the trigger on a DV1 and it would be nice to know. It's not a deal-breaker as I use an SDR for LF listening anyway. Thanks.
The DV1 would not be my first pick for monitoring below 500 KHz. In fact, if you select any single band, the DV1 can likely be bettered by radios specifically designed for that particular band. But if I had to take one radio into a fallout shelter with me (remember the gold 'ole 50's and 60's ?!?), it would definitely be the DV1 because of its diversity of band coverage and number of digital modes it's capable of receiving.
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Old 03-05-2017, 4:18 AM
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Default Or is it the best, given reasonable expectations?

Well said Mike.

In another thread you once made a reference to the 'Swiss Army Knife'.

In many ways I see that as relevant to this discussion about the AR-DV1.

If I wanted to cut a piece of metal by hand, then a full size hacksaw is best.

For wood, a full size wood saw.

Even for the above there are a wealth of 'special' types, designed to hopefully exactly fit a particular requirement.

The same applies to all the tools in the knife, from blades, screwdrivers, scissors, tweezers etc. For a specific job, a tool specifically designed for the one job you need will work best.

Does that make the Swiss Army Knife the 'worst tool ever made'?

Of course not, what it may lack sometimes for a very specialised job it gains in that it can often get that, plus many other jobs done, is handy, takes up a small amount of room and often can do just what you want, and do it well.

So it is with the AR-DV1. It is a general coverage receiver, which as a bonus covers more digital modes in one small box than any other.

Does it produce perfect results on every frequency, and every mode? Is it ever likely to manage to equal or better a radio made for a specific band? Could it ever be expected to replace in efficiency every other receiver currently available, irrespective of cost and size?

Of course the answer to all of those is 'No'.

Overall, is it a fantastic receiver when one considers everything it can do, most of it very well? For me the answer is a resounding 'Yes'.

If someone told me I could only have one receiver here, then like you, I would choose the AR-DV1 without hesitation. My 'Swiss Army Knife radio' in fact. I can put up with a few deficiencies here and there, because I appreciate all the plus points this piece of equipment demonstrates.
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Old 03-05-2017, 11:51 AM
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Well said Mike.

In another thread you once made a reference to the 'Swiss Army Knife'.

In many ways I see that as relevant to this discussion about the AR-DV1.

If I wanted to cut a piece of metal by hand, then a full size hacksaw is best.

For wood, a full size wood saw.

Even for the above there are a wealth of 'special' types, designed to hopefully exactly fit a particular requirement.

The same applies to all the tools in the knife, from blades, screwdrivers, scissors, tweezers etc. For a specific job, a tool specifically designed for the one job you need will work best.

Does that make the Swiss Army Knife the 'worst tool ever made'?

Of course not, what it may lack sometimes for a very specialised job it gains in that it can often get that, plus many other jobs done, is handy, takes up a small amount of room and often can do just what you want, and do it well.

So it is with the AR-DV1. It is a general coverage receiver, which as a bonus covers more digital modes in one small box than any other.

Does it produce perfect results on every frequency, and every mode? Is it ever likely to manage to equal or better a radio made for a specific band? Could it ever be expected to replace in efficiency every other receiver currently available, irrespective of cost and size?

Of course the answer to all of those is 'No'.

Overall, is it a fantastic receiver when one considers everything it can do, most of it very well? For me the answer is a resounding 'Yes'.

If someone told me I could only have one receiver here, then like you, I would choose the AR-DV1 without hesitation. My 'Swiss Army Knife radio' in fact. I can put up with a few deficiencies here and there, because I appreciate all the plus points this piece of equipment demonstrates.
Thanks Jeff for your input. And (more than just) incidentally, let us not forget the amazing piece of software that you wrote specifically for the DV1, which exponentially increases the power of many of the functions and adds several features and functions that are not available on the radio in its "standalone" form. For those interested in serious communications "reconnoitering", there is no combination of radio and software available for any other receiver that increases the overall capability of radio intelligence gathering.

Steve Sherman's comments are also very valid. Steve was one of the driving forces in getting me interested in the DV1, even after explaining some of the downsides he experienced with the DV1 in areas of high RF saturation. The yet to be introduced Icom R8600, with all of it's "bells & whistles", is still up against some pretty stiff competition from the DV1, when it comes down to the nuts & bolts of it's front-end capabilities. Icom has generally done a good job in these areas, but providing digital reception on a receiver with such wide-band coverage is new territory for them. Even the excellent R9500 (at about $12,000 USD) only scratched the surface of digital reception with an optional (!!!!!) P25 board. Let us not forget that the yet-to-be-released R8600 will also require the optional matching speaker with a built-in power supply to run the 8600. This will undoubtedly increase the cost of the full R8600 package by several hundred dollars.

I really do love this hobby, as I have been monitoring radio communications since the ago of 6, but true dedication requires a pretty fat wallet.
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Old 03-05-2017, 3:40 PM
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The R8600 should not require anything but an antenna and 12v at fairly low current and I believe it has a built in speaker.
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Let us not forget that the yet-to-be-released R8600 will also require the optional matching speaker with a built-in power supply to run the 8600. This will undoubtedly increase the cost of the full R8600 package by several hundred dollars.
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Old 03-06-2017, 7:45 AM
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The R8600 should not require anything but an antenna and 12v at fairly low current and I believe it has a built in speaker.
prcguy
Not sure about the "fairly low current" guess--- and perhaps there is a built-in speaker, but my guess is that anyone spending $2000 USD on a receiver is not going to skimp on the power supply and/or speaker.

I guess we'll have to wait a bit longer for the radio to actually materialize--- I'm surprised that Icom has not come out with the PDF Instruction Manual yet. Let there be not mistake--- I am a longtime Icom fan and have many of their receivers, from the R71, the R7000 and the R9000, to name a few, an have always been happy with Icom products. I don't believe that the issue is whether or not the Icom will live up to it's brand name, but rather that the extra features will justify the extra cost over the DV1.

Time will tell.
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Old 03-31-2017, 8:14 PM
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Default R8600 Update

A PDF file and instruction manual, both in Japanese, have shown up on Icom Japan's website. Careful viewing of the specs on the 8600 would seem to indicate that DMR and Fusion are not going to be incorporated into the first release of the unit. Certain other digital modes, such as D-Star, will be available.

This will give the AOR DV1 the decided advantage for those interested in digital monitoring. Here in the states, both DMR and Fusion are becoming very popular modes for amateur radio operators, particularly on the 440 band. DMR is also in heavy use here in the New York City area, as I am sure that it is in other major metropolitan areas, on commercial radio frequencies.
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