SDR# and Weather Sat. reception

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ab5r

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I haven't been successful getting replies on other posts; maybe I can from this one.

I've got SDR# up and running OK. I installed VBAudio pipping to Wxtoimg software and having problems.

I have set the pipping set correctly (I think). The wxtoimg software starts correctly, but only scans a black screen and no satellite image. Any clues from anyone that has successfully receiver the weather satellites using SDR# and wxtoimage software.

Thanks,
Jerry
 

rbm

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I don't have much time right now.
I'll be away from the computer for a while, but here's a sample of APT reception with an older SDR version a while back.

Maybe you can see some settings that are different than you have.

When I get back, I'll see what I can help you with.

Rich

 

ab5r

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Thanks Rich. Yes, that is an older version of SDR#. Mine is 1313 and latest. There are some differences, but as best that I can see, there are the same settings in SDR #. I have reloaded the piping software and will try again tomorrow. I suspect WxToImg auto-starts and not to the incoming audio from SDR#. Therefore, if the piping failed, I'd only get a black image.

I wonder if anyone has tried a simple audio out to mic in connections, rather than a virtual pipe?

We'll see what happens tomorrow.
 

rbm

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Ok, I'm back.

Yes, the settings won't vary much if at all between versions.

Here's some info for you and two screen captures of v1313.

The next good pass is many hours away here so I can't show you a 'live' screen capture.

Set the bandwidth to 32000 or higher. (Newer SDR versions only go to 32000)
I set mine to 36000 to allow for some doppler shift.

See this post of mine if you want to make it wider.
http://forums.radioreference.com/so...94704-sdr-bandwidth-question.html#post2218759

Uncheck ‘Squelch’

Calibrate your dongle ( ppm )

Uncheck BOTH AGC boxes in the configuration pop-up and adjust the RF gain manually.
Set the RF gain to a level where you can see a good APT signal as in my prior post.

Before you start SDRSharp,
In the drop down box for ‘Audio OUTPUT’
Select [MME] CABLE Input (VB-Audio Virtual C

By the way, don't let all that 'stuff' in my drop down box scare you.
I have LOTS of audio sources on my computers. ;)

Uncheck ‘Filter Audio’

Start wxtoimg
Calibrate if you haven’t already calibrated (you’ll need data from a prior pass and only needs to be done one time)
Click on ‘FILE’ then ‘UPDATE KEPLERS’ to get the latest orbit data.

At the bottom right corner, click on your volume control.

Set the VB-Audio to the center to start.

Then, click on ‘FILE’, ‘ RECORD’ Then, ‘Auto Record’
(The bottom of wxtoimg will show the current UTC time, and time and frequency of the next pass. Tune SDRSharp to THAT frequency and wait. ;)

Adjust the volume to give you around 65-80% green on wxtoimg during the satellite pass.

Rich

Some settings:



Another view of some settings:



Edit:
I almost forgot to mention that you MUST set your WXtoimg recording options also. (primarily the audio source)
 
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ab5r

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Yes, next pass at 14:26:00 CDT. Have time to check everything.

Instructions that I downloaded & read say to set band width 34000. (Nothing wrong with 36000)
Squelch is unchecked as instructions said to used WFM ..... (no squelch available in that mode)
Dongle is calibrated.
Both AGC off
Filter Audio off
Keps updated
Auto Record was clicked.
Wasn't aware of WxTImg calibration step. Cannot do that without first receiving a sat image! Still think that the problem is piping. As I said, I have reloaded and will check the other steps this afternoon before pass.

BTW I live south of Fort Worth, TX about 50 miles, for info.

Thanks for screen captures, but they are not that clear to read on my end. I have to break out the magnifying glass (smile).

Clarification: I should open WxToImg firist and set everything there first? I had both open and waiting for the pass to auto-start. It started, but nothing but black image. I think that was the img software starting and painting WITHOUT an incoming audio signal.....Just a guess.

BTW In the past, I have used WxToImg with receiver. Worked great; however, I gave up to available GOES images on internet. I'm new to this dongle stuff, which aroused my interests again.

so mush for life history................Boring.
 

rbm

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Thanks for screen captures, but they are not that clear to read on my end. I have to break out the magnifying glass (smile).

Clarification: I should open WxToImg firist and set everything there first? I had both open and waiting for the pass to auto-start. It started, but nothing but black image. I think that was the img software starting and painting WITHOUT an incoming audio signal.....Just a guess.

BTW In the past, I have used WxToImg with receiver. Worked great; however, I gave up to available GOES images on internet. I'm new to this dongle stuff, which aroused my interests again.

so mush for life history................Boring.
To see the high resolution screen captures, just keep clicking on the magnifying glass in the bottom right corner.
You should be able to see the final image just as clear as you can see your own desktop. ;)

Yes, If you run WXtoimg with no audio to it, it WILL paint a black image.
It just EXPECTS the audio to be there.

I usually start WXtoimg first so I can see when the next pass is.
There's also an option under 'FILE' to see the list of upcoming passes and you can print that out.

I found that I need to set the volume slider on SDRSharp close to maximum.

Also, under the FILE, RECORD selection, there is a 'Manual Test' mode.
You can run that anytime to test your audio to WXtoimg and adjust volume levels.
In that case, if you 'crank up' the RF gain to where you see noise in the SDRSharp display, you should see noise in the WXtoimg display also.

Rich

By the way, here's a good web page that you may find useful.
You'll have to configure it for your location on the right side, bottom. (SET YOUR CUSTOM LOCATION)

LIVE REAL TIME SATELLITE TRACKING AND PREDICTIONS: NOAA 19 NOAA 18 NOAA 15 NOAA 17 SAUDISAT 1C
 

rbm

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With the Manual Test option, you can get everything set up prior to a satellite pass

You have to tell SDR# to put the Audio output to VB-Audio Cable and then tell WXtoimg to look for the audio there as well.

If the two aren't 'talking & listening' to each other, you will get a black screen on record

Rich

Here's the Manual Test Selection:



And the Manual Test Recording of audio 'noise'.




And for completeness, this is the black screen you'll see if WXtoimg is not getting audio.
In this case, I just didn't start SDRSharp

 
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ab5r

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SUCCESS. i received last pass fairly well considering it was 91W and I am 96W. Also, I only have a Discone up now and no preamp for now. I have a circular polarized antenna (not up) and LNA on order.

YES, I have that tracking program saved om computer already, but thanks. I also own NOVA, but it also is not installed. I had lost interest in the satellites until recently. Haven't really got excited about AMSAT birds lately either.

I THANK you again.

Best regards,
Jerry
 

rbm

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SUCCESS. i received last pass fairly well considering it was 91W and I am 96W. Also, I only have a Discone up now and no preamp for now. I have a circular polarized antenna (not up) and LNA on order.

YES, I have that tracking program saved om computer already, but thanks. I also own NOVA, but it also is not installed. I had lost interest in the satellites until recently. Haven't really got excited about AMSAT birds lately either.

I THANK you again.

Best regards,
Jerry
Glad to hear that you made out OK Jerry.

I've been 'playing around' with satellite stuff since I worked in that business back when ITOS, NIMBUS, TIROS-N, Landsat etc. were being developed.
At one time, if there was a receiver on board, there was a very good chance I worked on it. ;)

I caught the NOAA-15 pass here this afternoon.
The results are below.

By the way, that was using an ST2 antenna with an LNA-1000 low noise preamp, and feeding a total of 32 radios (including my Broadcastify feed.)

Rich

The image coming down:



Resulting Processed Image:

 

ab5r

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WOW, you de man, for sure! Thanks again for help. I tried AMSAT birds years ago; about the time AO-40 bit the dust, and lost m interest, plus moving to an apartment. (shot that down)

I guess that little + on you image is where you live?

Now, onward and upward to new challenges. Right?

73,
Jerry
 

rbm

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WOW, you de man, for sure! Thanks again for help. I tried AMSAT birds years ago; about the time AO-40 bit the dust, and lost m interest, plus moving to an apartment. (shot that down)

I guess that little + on you image is where you live?

Now, onward and upward to new challenges. Right?

73,
Jerry
Yep!
There's ALWAYS something new! It's hard to keep up!

Yes, that + is where I'm located in Upstate NY not too far from Binghamton.

Rich
 

rbm

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That's where I've had the most trouble, any tips on processing images in WXtoimg?
Below are the options I use for processing. That may not be the perfect solution for all people. ;)

Under 'FILE', 'RECORD' , 'Image Settings'
Highlight the ones you want, and save the options.

After the image is downloaded completely, the auto processing will run for each option you selected.
And save the images if you selected to do that.

The image I posted is the 'MSA multispectral analysis'

Rich

Image processing options.



 

ab5r

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The only SDR# settings that I see different from mine and your's was you had SNAP TO GRID and CORRECT IQ checked; I didn't. Guess it does not matter.

BM82557: Yes, figuring out the right setting for WXtiing is a whole new ball park and probably not for this forum. I guess that there is one, probably Yahoo Groups. (I'm not blowing you off, just think the Admin police would fuss at us sooner or later. Maybe, Rich can aid you off line?)
Regards,
Jerry
 

rbm

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rbm

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The only SDR# settings that I see different from mine and your's was you had SNAP TO GRID and CORRECT IQ checked; I didn't. Guess it does not matter.

BM82557: Yes, figuring out the right setting for WXtiing is a whole new ball park and probably not for this forum. I guess that there is one, probably Yahoo Groups. (I'm not blowing you off, just think the Admin police would fuss at us sooner or later. Maybe, Rich can aid you off line?)
Regards,
Jerry
Jerry,
Snap to Grid only ensures that no matter where you click on the display, the frequency will be an EXACT multiple of your step size.

Correct IQ gets rid of some false display artifacts in the exact center of the display.
Which reminds me ... I try to never have the frequency I want to examine to be in the very center of the display for that reason.

So, you're right. They really don't make much difference.
It's just a 'housekeeping' thing in the SDRSharp display.

I don't see a problem discussing WXtoImg settings here.
Not only does it help the people involved in the thread, but there are many others who learn by reading and don't chime in.
Also, it's a good resource to search through later.

Rich
 

reconrider8

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i know this will probley get me thrown under the bus but is weather sat images capable of being monitored with the stock dongle antenna?
 
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