Tag Archives: hamvention

No new metal building for 2019 Hamvention

The white event tents that house a large number of vendors.

(Source: Southgate ARC)

CQ Magazine report there will still be tents for some commercial exhibitors at next year’s Dayton Hamvention.

In one of their first acts as leaders of the 2019 Hamvention, General Chairman Jack Gerbs, WB8SCT, and Assistant General Chairman Rick Allnutt, WS8G, announced on August 5th that they had been unable so far “to reach an agreement on a long-term contract (with Greene County officials) where both the Fairgrounds and Hamvention would feel comfortable erecting a new building.”

The announcement was made “in the spirit of being transparent,” they said. Gerbs and Allnut stressed that the overall relationship between the Dayton Amateur Radio Association and Greene County remains excellent and the Hamvention will continue to be held at the fairgrounds in Xenia. They cited improvements made for the 2018 show and promised more for 2019. However, a new commercial exhibits building will not be among them.

The 2019 Dayton Hamvention is scheduled for May 17-19.

CQ Magazine
http://www.cq-amateur-radio.com/

I’ll admit: this is disappointing news. I’ve had a table in the tents the past two years at Hamvention. The first year (2017), the tents were pretty dismal–lighting was almost nonexistent and there was serious water intrusion.

This year, DARA obtained much better tents and did a proper job securing the walls and avoiding the drainage areas. Still, water intrusion was an issue. If it rained (and it did) the floors (i.e. asphalt) got wet. Vendors had to keep their inventory off of the floor at all times, else it would get soaked. Since so many products are stored in cardboard boxes, are electronic, and not waterproof, this was a serious issue. I spoke to one of the larger tent vendors who was really upset about the water intrusion and lack of security and vowed not to return unless they could get a proper indoor space.

To please outdoor tent vendors, I believe DARA ought to give discounted pricing for those spaces, increase security, and at least provide crates or pallets to help vendors keep their inventory from contacting the ground and getting soaked.

Click here to read our review of the 2017 Hamvention–the first at the Greene County Fairgrounds.

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The Mission RGO ONE: A new 50 watt all mode HF transceiver

Shortly after posting a set of photos I took at the 2018 Hamvention, I received a number of reader inquiries regarding one particular radio: The Mission RGO ONE.

I found this cool tabletop transceiver in the flea market area of the Hamvention early Saturday morning and included it with my inside exhibits photos. I wasn’t able to gather a lot of information from the representative at the time because the Hamvention staff opened the gates to general admission a full 30 minutes early, so I had to make a sprint to my table at the other side of the fairgrounds.

The following specifications/features were listed on the RGO ONE product sheet:

  • QRP/QRO output 5 – 50W
  • All mode shortwave operation – coverage of the 9 HAM HF bands (160m optional)
  • High dynamic range receiver design including high IP3 monolithic IC in the front end and H-mode first mixer
  • Low phase noise first LO – SI570 chip
  • Full/semi QSK on CW; VOX operation on SSB.
  • Down conversion superhet topology with 9MHz IF
  • Custom made crystal filters for SSB and CW and variable crystal 4 pole filter – Johnson type
  • Stylish and professional look
  • Compact and lightweight body
  • Multicolor FSTN LCD
  • Silent operation with no clicking relays inside
  • Modular construction – Mother board serves as a “chassis” also fits all the external connectors, daughter boards, inter-connections and acts as a cable harness.
  • Optional modules – NB, AF, ATU, XVRTER
  • PC control via CAT protocol; USB FTDI chip
  • Memory morse code keyer (Curtis A, CMOS B)
  • Contest and DXpedition conveniences

For even more detail, I recently contacted the rig’s developer, Boris Sapundzhiev (LZ2JR), who kindly answered all of my questions.

Boris replied:

Hello Thomas,

Thanks a lot for your message and interest about our new homebrew project that we called RGO ONE. Here you can find more about the radio:

QRP HF Transceiver

There are clickable highlights on the text which lead to a schematic diagram for each module so you can have a look if you like. Final documents and last revision of schematics will be available soon.

The idea of this project was inspired of an old TEN-TEC radios with 9MHz IF – their perfect analogue design and crystal crisp audio both CW and sideband. Mine have two very old TEN-TEC ARGOSY 525D and several moreTEN-TEC equipments. So with the help of the new electronic components available on the market we realize this old concept…

We’ve been working hard for almost three years to see what you saw at Dayton flea market table. A real performing HF 50W CW/SSB transceiver. We are 4 people in the team.. Other team mates are very good in industrial electronics manufacturing and helping very much with electronic PCB design, parts delivery, microprocessors and other things.

The idea of the front panel and other constructions design is mine .. I literally drew it in a couple of hours then our CAD designer put it in AUTOCAD/INVENTOR 3D design software.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

LCD we made in China and already stocked plenty of LCD and backlight units. Front panel is made by means of plastic mold method:

Here it is:

FACE PANEL MOLD PLASTICS OR ALUMINUM MACHINED

So far we got two samples that we tested already in real conditions and made several contest (LZ2RS helped with this task).

You can seek for video clips on YouTube (my channel) to see how it works.

Click here to view on YouTube.

I am back in Bulgaria now and today we had a team meeting so it is decided to start first lot 10pcs which will be completely ready to run. The time range of this is somewhere next two months. Then next lot will be 100 units probably some of them or most of them will be in a kit form with ready populated SMD small foot print components.

At the show in Dayton we revealed our target price for the base version – $450-$550. Hope to keep it as promised but final price will be available when first units come to alive.
First units will ship from Bulgaria, then we will try to stock more units in US.

This is briefly about our intentions of the project. A lot of interest, expectations and positive “WOW” feedbacks received so this urge me to go fast forward.

73, GL

Boris LZ2JR/AC9IJ

Thank you for the detailed reply, Boris! I will certainly follow this project with interest and post updates (readers: bookmark the tag RGO ONE).

I love the size of the RGO ONE and the fact it’s capable of a full 50 watts out in such a portable form factor. The front panel is very attractive, ergonomic and the backlit LCD screen is quite easy to read at any angle.

Boris, if you manage to hit your target price of $550 or less, you’ll no doubt sell these by the hundreds! I’ll be watching this project with interest.

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2018 Hamvention photos: Inside Exhibits

The Flex 6600M is a handsome standalone SDR transceiver.

Saturday and Sunday were long (though fun–!) days at the 2018 Hamvention–I did have a moment to visit most of the inside exhibit tables. Most of the following photos were taken (in no particular order) in the main Hamvention buildings and tents at the Greene County Fairgrounds.

Again, it was especially fun meeting so many SWLing Post readers and contributors in person!

Note that the folling photos are in no particular order. Click here to view photos of the 2018 Hamvention flea market.

Click on the photos below to view larger images:

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2018 Hamvention photos: Friday Flea Market

It was a long day at the 2018 Hamvention Friday, but we had a brilliant time. As always, it’s a pleasure to meet so many SWLing Post readers and contributors–thank you for stopping by!

Below, I’ve posted photos I took at the Hamvention Flea Market this morning. Note that most of these photos were taken either prior to the flea market opening or just shortly after. The selection was pretty amazing. The rain did come and go throughout the day, but the recycled asphalt that was spread between the aisles did help keep mitigate the mud situation.

Click on the thumbnail to expand each photo. I’ve tried to include price tags when available although the camera phone I used didn’t have the sharpest focus! I plan to post inside exhibit photos tomorrow.

 

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SDRplay announces the RSPduo: A 14-bit Dual Tuner SDR

(Source: SDRplay Press Release)

SDRplay announces the RSPduo – A 14-bit Dual Tuner SDR

Today at the Dayton Hamvention, SDRplay Limited is announcing the launch of a new Software Defined Radio product – the RSPduo.

The RSPduo is a radical new addition to the RSP line of SDR receivers from SDRplay. Architecturally, it is different from any previous RSP in that it features dual independent tuners, both piped through a single high-speed USB 2.0 interface.

The SDRplay RSPduo is a dual-tuner wideband full featured 14-bit SDR which covers the entire RF spectrum from 1kHz to 2GHz giving 10MHz of spectrum visibility. Initially using Windows based ‘SDRuno’ supplied by SDRplay, you can simultaneously monitor two completely separate 2MHz bands of spectrum anywhere between 1kHz and 2GHz.

Superficially the RSPduo looks identical to the highly popular RSP2pro and will be able to operate in a very similar way.

However, it also allows a completely new and exciting set of usage scenarios such as:

  1. Simultaneous monitoring of two widely spaced bands – e.g. 40m (HF) and 2m (VHF)
  2. Mixing and matching applications simultaneously – e.g. ADS-B and ATC scanning
  3. Phase and time coherent demodulation of two receivers

Scenario 3 is very difficult to achieve with two separate USB devices because of the uncertainty of USB latency. The RSPduo overcomes this limitation because all traffic goes through a single USB interface, thus enabling the possibility of the development of various types of diversity demodulation such as: spatial, frequency and polarisation which can bring
huge benefits in terms of improved performance.

Jon Hudson, Marketing Director at SDRplay commented:
“As well as adding a second independently controlled tuner, which in itself, offers a whole new set of exciting usage possibilities, the SDRduo features 14bit ADCs and a completely re-designed RF front end. These changes provide better RF selectivity and even more dynamic range, offering outstanding performance under extremely challenging reception conditions. The combination of performance and features makes the RSPduo our highest spec RSP yet and sets a new benchmark in the sub $300 SDR market”

Due to its exceptional combination of performance and price, the RSP family of receivers have become very popular and the RSPduo provides the next level of functionality for both amateur radio enthusiasts as well as the scientific, educational and industrial SDR community.

As well as being demonstrated at Hamvention, the RSPduo is available direct from SDRplay or via SDRplay’s network of channel partners and resellers

The RSPduo is expected to retail at approximately $279 USD (excluding taxes) or £199 GBP (excluding taxes).

For more information visit the SDRplay website on www.sdrplay.com

About SDRplay: SDRplay limited is a UK company and consists of a small group of engineers with strong connections to the UK Wireless semiconductor industry. SDRplay announced its first product, the RSP1 in August 2014

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