Wednesday, August 03, 2011

SDR-RADIO - An Alternative to Spectravue

As owners of RF Space SDRs will know, their native software Spectravue, now in version 3.21, offers a powerful yet rather convoluted graphical user interface. For some time, has offered an alternative GUI, now in version 1.3. I decided to test SDR-RADIO with some old SDR-IQ files on my system. Later on, I plan to test the GUI "live", with an SDR-IQ. claims to be a Windows console for SDR receivers and transceivers. It is designed for the commercial, amateur radio and short wave listener communities to provide a powerful interface for all SDR users. Especially interesting for many DX-ers is that it provides an alternative to Spectravue for running RF Space SDRs. Not that Spectravue is a poor program. Its basic appearance is simplistic, with most if not all of its functions hidden in menus. moves most of these functions up front and adds quite a bit of user friendliness in the process. I will not go into detail about the software, since the possibilities are outlined at's home page. has a resizeable window, or can be run in Full Screen mode. The illustrations below show how they appear (note that I have selected the Zoom function at playback). The Full Screen mode appears clean and uncluttered with the basic controls available, and with the all-important date and running time available.

However, for selecting a file or other input you need to use the resizeable window mode. With a lot more information available, space for the waterfall/scope is limited unless you have a very large display. Otherwise, offers a wealth of radio-related functions, such as the HFCC database, Solar data, a world map with the sun's position, and options enough to tailor-suite your GUI from here to eternity. One example: You can "design" your own bandwidths, and assign them to one or more modes.

Playing back SDR-IQ files worked well. The console has three "VFO"s which can be configured independently, and an MP3 recorder using 32 kbps, 8 kHz mono. Now, this is one function where I wanted some options, such as being able to record wav. Apparently, this is not possible.

And of course, you can record a chunk of the RF spectrum for later analysis - the holy grail of the MW DX-er.

Very important for RF recording, the console has an Outlook-type Calendar with extensive recording scheduling available. However, you need to configure each recording session within one day independently; you can't plan a batch of recordings within 24 hours since the shortest recurrence period is 1 day. That calls for time consuming editing if you plan to record every full hour and every half hour for a night. Hourly recurrence should have been available as an option.

While I haven't tested very extensively, it does indeed look like an interesting alternative to Spectravue. Remote control is said to be one major feature with that I haven't tested at all.

1 comment:

Anders Hultqvist -AHK said...


SDR-Radio, as is today, is rather a complement to SpectraVue. The best in SDR-Radio is the "IQ Data File Anaysis". Try it!