Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Stefano Mollo (VK6WFM), who writes:
I have been lately experimenting with DRM 30, with the aim of coming up with a cheap solution to get on air for next to no $$$, for small, local broadcasters that would either go pirate on FM or would not go at all due to the impossibility here in Australia to get a proper FM license at a cost that does not involves selling a kidney (or two)!
I am a ham radio operator, so I turned my attention to DRM30; [the DRM application] DReaM has the capability of acting as a transmitter as well, so I started experimenting.
I was very successful at transmitting a DRM30 / 10 kHz signal with a $ 0.50 TX module otherwise intended to transmit data with an Arduino. The signal was received with an SDR + HDSDR + Virtual Audio Cable + DReaM in reception mode.
So far, so good; with this experiment I realised that DRM 30 can, in fact, yield excellent quality at ANY frequency (as I used the 433Mhz LIPD range in my experiment) or better said, with any medium, as long as it is linear enough to transport the DRM signal.
I wanted to find a way to show the World – literally – what can be achieved with DReaM in TX mode…for free!!!
So, after some trial and error, I have set up the system below which allows anyone in the World to “tune in” my “DRM30 radio station” and listen to my DRM30/18 kHz signal, in full blown stereo. Quality is exceptional, and just imagine to send DReaM’s signal to a proper transmitter instead of streaming it over the internet ….
So…point your VLC Media Player (on Windows) to stream from:
…then pipe VLC’s output to DReaM’s input via Audio Cable (or any other Virtual Audio Cable you like).
In DReaM, select the audio cable output as the sound card’s signal input device:
After few seconds you should be able my test signal, in full stereo, streamed from a PC running DReaM in TX mode, whose output is then captured by MB Recaster and streamed to an ICE Cast server I have in the Cloud. Note that no particular configuration was needed on the ICE Cast server, at all.
This is an example of what can be achieved on a solid transmission channel with DRM30 and only 18 kHz bandwidth (i.e. the normal bandwidth of an AM channel).
One can achieve the same exact audio quality using any channel linear enough to transport an 18 kHz wide DRM30 signal. It doesn’t matter the frequency, or the physical medium per se.
[…]My aim with this experiment is not to send DRM over IP; there are much simpler ways or streaming audio over IP.
Rather, my aim is to demonstrate what can be achieved with 18 kHz +DRM30 on any frequency and on any medium (which, could be for example the electrical distribution overhead lines …. just saying …. 🙂 ).
If only the local regulator would support this, instead of enforcing draconian regulations … such as the restriction of just 6 kHz on shortwave.
Please share your thoughts.
Fascinating experiment, Stefano! Thanks for sharing!
Post readers: If you’re in the mood to do a little experiment, let us know if you’re able to decode Stefano’s 18 kHz DRM30 broadcast over IP! Please comment!