SuperSDR 3.0 release

Hi all,

just wanted to let you know that I released the 3.0 beta of SuperSDR on github.

It's been vastly improved over the last release, several bugfixes, improved interface and many new features. You may read a bit more on the github page: https://github.com/mcogoni/supersdr or simply grab it and try it now the Linux or the Windows executable: https://github.com/mcogoni/supersdr/releases/tag/v3.0beta

Main new features:

  • dual independent rx + waterfall linked to a "real" HF transceiver with CAT; the 2 rx may be even connected to2 different kiwis;
  • much improved spectrum scope with autoscaling (you may turn it off) that eliminates impulsive visual noise from the waterfall: during thunderstorms it's great!
  • much better analog like S-meter with slow decay, fast attack;
  • audio recording, cyclic memories with save to disk;
  • Dynamic DX-Cluster integration and EIBI broadcasting labels;
  • spectrum scope and waterfall with accumulation averaging (similar to LINRAD): accumulate a large number of samples (up to 100X) and plot slower with much improved visual SNR;
  • thought to be operated with just the keyboard: you don't really need a mouse;
  • smooth waterfall;
  • very low latency if operating a local kiwi;
  • extremely low resources: on an old i3 it needs about 5% of the CPU: you may launch several instances...
  • if you forget the keyboard shortcuts, just hover the mouse over the HELP on the bottom right ;)
  • mutes on very strong signals: you may use it nicely along with your transmitter...

It's not a replacement for John's great web-based software, it's a different way to use your Kiwi, more oriented towards the integration with a CAT radio.

Hope you find it useful!

73,

marco / IS0KYB

«13

Comments

  • Thanks Marco, where I can find english manual for your software with full describe hot keys and etc?

  • Hi! Just hover the mouse over the blue HELP text on the bottom right. That should cover most shortcuts. I still have to make a video in english. If you have doubts, just ask ;)

  • Ops, I think I made a mistake choosing the category of my post as "software relase info" that could be reserved for the official software by John. John if this a problem, feel free to edit the category to general chat or whatever.

    Sorry!

  • Hi! Just hover the mouse over the blue HELP text on the bottom right. That should cover most shortcuts. I still have to make a video in english. If you have doubts, just ask ;)

    Ok, thanks

  • Hi Marco,

    I'm trying to use the Windows version but it defaults to the inital IP address of 192.168.1.82, then can't find the KiWi and closes.

    How do I change the default address ?

    I've edited the associated README.md but that didn't work.

    Regards,

    Martin

  • If you hit close Martin it should then ask for address:port

    Stu

  • Hi Stu,

    When runing it from the exe file, it gets as far as the 'connecting' screen and then just closes.

    I'm fairly sure I have all the prerequisites in place.

    Should I be running it directly under python instead ? It doesn't seem to like that at all.

    Regards,

    Martin

  • Hi Martin, it sounds like you're using an old version.

    Are you sure that you downloaded this one: https://github.com/mcogoni/supersdr/releases/download/v3.0beta/WinSuperSDR.zip

    It defaults to connect to your local kiwisdr.local as explained in the README (why did you edit the README?!) but then a window appears after a few seconds asking to enter the address and port of another kiwisdr.

    I'm sure you downloaded an old version since I've not used that IP address for a long time.

    PS: Stu, what do you mean by "hit close", it asks the kiwi address without doing anything.

    marco

  • Martin, with the executable you don't need any library or anything Python related. I just tried it on a windows pc without anything on it and it should ask you the alternative address:port

  • edited February 1

    Sorry Marco, just a quick test while at work (remotely) and it seemed to be doing very little (my kiwi is not on the same network if that matters) so as I hit "close" it asked for the IP:Port, I could/should have waited for it but I was rushing and that seemed to work.

    Yes just checked again, I am an idiot and just confirmed it, it asked for the address fine.

  • but after entering the IP:port did it work?

  • Yes it worked well, over RDP+VPN (it was a bit of an unfair test) but I knew the works antivirus would probably stop it (traps ALL new software) so only tried remote.

    Audio was pretty good over RDP and that wrecks most things.

    Will try it properly in an hour or two.

    Great to have another option for the SDR.

  • Stu,

    could you test it with CAT with some radio?

    Anyway, when working with remote/laggy kiwis you could use the command line option -b to increase the buffer size, but it increases lag of course.

  • Hi Marco,

    Yes I'm using that version.

    This is a screen grab I managed to obtain just before it closed.

    Regards,

    Martin

  • edited February 1

    Martin, is the kiwisdr free or all of its channels are busy?

    Anyway, if you want to start it with a different kiwisdr, just run it from the command line with something like:

    supersdr.py -s oh5kq.ddns.net -p 8076
    

    if your local kiwi needs a password use the -w option

    supersdr.py -s oh5kq.ddns.net -p 8076 -w somepassword
    


  • Hi Marco,

    I'm trying it on my private KiWi on a local network so it's got free slots.

    If I wish to run it from the command line, do I try that in Python, Windows CMD, Powershell or something else ?

    Sorry I'm software illiterate :-(

    Regards,

    Martin

  • Martin, I don't use Windows, a friend of mine created the executable, but in theory you should be able to run it from the powershell (it should be something similar to Linux I guess...). Beware that in the previous commands I wrote for you, you should write the executable name, not the python filename.py

    Anyway it's very strange that you get that error with your local kiwi. if you turn off your kiwi for a while, you should get the interface asking for the kiwisdr address:port and you could try another kiwi...

    Please let me know!

  • Hi Marco,

    OK I got it running :-)

    I had to run the .exe in place of the .py in the cmd window after selecting the correct directory and add the KiWi IP address and port number, as in the examples you provided.

    I guess I now need to remember how to write a dos batch file to set it all up correctly.

    Regards,

    Martin

  • Great!

    Martin, now you have to run hamlib and connect CAT to a real radio ;)

  • Yes understood.

    I don't know if my eyes are up to it :-(

    The GUI is a bit on the small side for me, I've put on my strong reading spectacles, but I'm still struggling.

    Printing out the help file has made it a bit easier to navigate.

    Thanks for your help.

    Regards,

    Martin

  • (in Linux) with no CAT I find that hitting the spacebar closes the program

  • Hi,

    I am a Windows user and I got it working. The Help is very helpful. I just can not find how to decrease/increase default bandwith. 12kHz is not that useful on AM. Sure it gives a bright and clear sound if no interference exists on neighbouring fqs but usually that is not the case. In my Kiwis I have set the default to 7680Hz, 8-9kHz is also good for listening to AM. So the question remains.

    How to change the bandwith? 🙄

    Best regards,

    Pekka

    ps. I don´t have a rig but this is still very nice piece of software to operate Kiwis from the keyboard.

  • Jim,

    thanks for the report, my bad. I made a late minute change to cleanup the code and a bug slipped in. I just uploaded a new version (only the source code, the windows exe will be remade shortly).

    Pekka, you may change the bandwidth with the up and down keys or even with the mouse wheel while on the spectrum or the waterfall.

    Sorry for the bugs!

    marco

  • I found it what I was after. It is the "low/high cut" J/K/O. Is that IF bandwith officially or what?

    Pekka

  • Btw, the red frequency output high up is very hard to read. At least for my old eyes 😂

    Pekka

  • edited February 2

    OK, I'll try to recap the main points here:

    • TUNING: LEFT/RIGHT keys tune by -/+1 khz, when very zoomed in, they tune by 100 Hz, when you also press SHIFT the tuning step is 10X. You may also point and click on any signal with the mouse. Just use the VFO of your radio instead. The spectrum scope will also move by half span when you reach the borders. Pressing Z enables the center tuning and shifts the waterfall/scope while you tune keeping the RX bandpass centered;
    • SPECTRUM TUNING: UP/DOWN change zoom level (SPAN) by 2X (equivalent: mouse wheel scroll). PAGE UP/PAGE DOWN move the spectrum center by half the span, but do not affect the RX frequency, you may return to your (main) RX frequency by pressing the SPACE bar. You may DRAG the spectrum scope (not the waterfall) with your mouse and also see dynamically by how much you're dragging it;
    • FILTER BANDPASS: CONTROL+J/K grows/shrinks by 100Hz the whole filter, J/K changes the LOW/HIGH CUT and SHIFT inverts the change. Pressing O (not zero) resets it to default. Bandpass width is not supported by Hamlib (at least for my radio) so you don't affect the CAT controlled radio;
    • RECEIVERS: you start with one active RX passband whose rx mode changes automatically with frequency, you may decativate AUTO RX MODE by pressing X or manually changing mode. Second kiwi RX is activated by pressing Y that uses the same KIWISDR as the first. You may change the KIWISDR by pressing Q and entering the address:port of any KIWISDR. You may decouple the tuning of the Kiwi and that of the CAT radio by pressing S: you'll now have a separate orange bandpass representing your real VFO. The currently being tuned RX is the RED one, the GREEN one has no controls and monitors the frequency you left it into. Pressing Y again you just switch the RX bandpasses and you can control the other. Each KIWI RX has a separate volume/mute control but the same AGC threshold that you can change via 1/2 keys and that level is visible on the s-meter with the short blue needle;
    • S-METER: activate it with the M key: it has an analog simulation that changes between CW and SSB/AM. The values over S9 are not accurate (it is a known problem I'm working on);
    • SPECTRUM SCOPE LEVELS: by default you have a fully automatic, dynamically set minimum and maximum values that are shown on the left. This is the most useful mode especially because it's almost insensitive to thunderstorms and you don't get those pesky horizontal lines on the low bands! But if you need to perform some measurement, you may turn AUTO mode off with the 3 key that will also get you horizontal lines every 10dB vertical division. The TOP/BOTTOM dB levels may be changed by pressing ./, keys (SHIFT to change bottom level);
    • ACCUMULATION AVERAGE: if you're familiar with LINRAD by Leif Asbrink, you'll surely be fond of the possibility to perform multiple samplings for each shown spectrum/waterfall line. This leads to large visual enhancements of the SNR both in the scope and the waterfall. This is performed by pressing G several times and it will slow down the update. Pressing H will lower the number of samples until you get back to normal;

    OK, these are the main points you should be familiar with to use the software. There are several other functions but you'll discover them with the HELP menu... :)

    ciao!

    marco / IS0KYB

  • Hi Marco,

    This new version works well and so far had no chance to try out the rigctl functionality.

    One thing I can't seem to get right is the readability of display fonts even though I tried different monitor settings and even tried to change the font in pygame. Attached is a screenshot with the png from your repository on top and on the bottom what appears on my monitor. Any further suggestions to improve the readability of text would be welcome.

    Ben


  • Hi Ben,

    thanks for the useful feedback.

    If you run this command within a python shell:

    import pygame.freetype
    pygame.freetype.get_version()
    

    What version do you get? I have 2.11 here with Manjaro.

    But are you running supersdr under that Raspberry Pi?! Does it work well? I have a RPi 3 and it's almost usable here...

  • edited February 2

    I think you're probably missing the pretty Mono font I have.

    pygame.freetype.get_fonts()
    

    lists all available fonts on your machine...

    The font that gets actually used on mine is: 'Bitstream Vera Sans Mono'

  • Hi Marco,

    I sent you a pm message about the font situation. The RPi 3 does ok with Supersdr and Digiskimmer running. When adding more than 2 browser windows the pi graphics have difficulty keeping up.

Sign In or Register to comment.