RTL-SDR Software Advice

2000nesman

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Mar 8, 2019
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9
Location
Maine
As the title suggest I am looking for software suggestions. I have been running SDR-Console for the past few years streaming my local fire dispatch on broadcastify. SDR-console is great for one channel. I want to scan through FireChannelA, FireChannelB, and FireChannelC (memory bank scanning?). I know SDRSharp has a scanning feature but I have only been able to find a starting freq like 155.000 and ending freq 158.000 where it scans everything in between, obviously I'm looking to get away from that. Yea I could run multiple VFO's simultaneously but when my dept and the next town over dept are getting tones at the same time it gets a little hard to listen.

Maybe I am not using SDR# correctly and it has this feature already?
OS: Windows 10
RTL-SDR

TLDR; looking for SDR software that can scan channel A,B and C and nothing more!
 

gh6406

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Apr 25, 2013
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Dalton,Ga
SDR# with frequency plugin. enter frequencies that you want to scan in the frequency folder.
 

2000nesman

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Mar 8, 2019
Messages
9
Location
Maine
I am sort of blanking on how to do that. I have that installed, setting the memory banks for FireChannelA, FireChannelB, and FireChannelC and telling to scan know those 3 channels is where im having issues.
 

morfis

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Joined
Jan 24, 2004
Messages
1,104
sdrsharp with frequency scanner plugin (as modified by 'thewraith', see detailed thread about that on RR) installed
Create a scan list using the "edit scan ranges button" using the lowest frequency and highhest frequency as the limits and with correct channel step and bandwidth.

Start sdrsharp and then highlight your scan range - click scan. You might have to lock out freqs inbetween during the scan to end up with just the freqs you want activating the sound out.
Some tweaking of scan parameters might be needed to get it how you want. You can use the built in sound recorder, your hits can be logged, total activity in each session can also be logged so quite a powerful tool.

Alternatively, using recent sdrsharp versions you can create 'slices' - these are extra instances of sdrsharp within the input device bandwidth
eg: if you are using a airspy R2 you could tune your main window to Frequency A and as long as Frequency B and C are within 8MHz of each other create 'slices' for two. Each 'slice' acts as an independent controller within the baseband so you can tweak settings such as individual bandwidth to fine tune on a noisy channel or a channel that suffers interference from nearby other users/multipath signals.
The audio from each slice can be positioned across a stereo stage...so with stereo speakers on your PC you canould have Freq A output to the left, FreqB output to the centre and FreqC output to the right - very useful feature (it can also be used with multiple instances of sdrsharp so if there was a frequency outside the bandwidth you monitored with a second full instance of sdrsharp you can move the frequencies to have four across the 'stage', or perhaps wo in one area, most importnat one somewhere else and another elsewhere...it's very flexible)


On modern sdrsharp using the up to date scanner plugin I don't think you can create a 'memory scan' in the same way as plugging three freqs into memory slots on a scanner. This was possible with a different (older) scanner plugin but that one likely won't work well with skinned sdsharp and is otherwise not as well featured anyway.

Another possible solution might involve the so called frequency manager suite but that is quite horribly bloated and requires a specific installation rather than the simple copy/paste of a single file and addition of a line of text in a text file that the frequency scanner plugin, and most other sdrsharp plugins, use. I binned that software very quickly and have never found reason to look at it again.
 
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morfis

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Jan 24, 2004
Messages
1,104
A rather silly example (being stereo!) using vanilla SDRsharp with NO plugins....I was going to use 2m or 70cm amateur band but with a sum total of ONE active channel on both it would have looked boring (and it sounded worse!)

Top area is the first part of spectrum I tuned and you can see that I have the audio set panned fully left.
Two slices adde, one with audio panned 3/4 right and the other fully right.

Each window can be sized independently, areas displayed as required (so you can minimise the controls in any/all and you can disable the waterfall/spectrum views in any/all to reduce processor load (or just to have less going on). Offset can be adjusted independently BUT the child slices are relying on the main instance so can only be tuned within it's range - though you are free to tune them within that, change the modulation decoder/bandwidth/squelch/audio output (so if one was digital or data you could send it to an external decoder ...they don't become 'fixed' as they would be using the multiple VFO output plugin.

example.jpg

The spectrum available will depend on your source device - with an rtl dongle such as the nooelec ones you'd be limited to a liitle over 2MHz

There didn't seem much point in showing screenshots using the scanner plugin method
 

fire42man

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Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
80
Location
Pittsburgh
If you're okay with Linux software you may want to take a look at PiScan - it functions similar to a conventional scanner radio. You could set it up in a virtual machine to avoid needing a linux PC
 

2000nesman

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Joined
Mar 8, 2019
Messages
9
Location
Maine
If you're okay with Linux software you may want to take a look at PiScan - it functions similar to a conventional scanner radio. You could set it up in a virtual machine to avoid needing a linux PC
Good thing Im a CN major and have had my experiences with VM's. Ill give it a shot this sounds interesting. Thank you for all the reply's!
 
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