New KiwiSDR time to think about the front end
I'm new to this forum but long time user of a private KiwiSDR set up by the MW Circle in the UK. I'm a huge fan of the collaborative effort behind the KiwiSDR network (and of course kudos to jks) and i really appreciate the TDoA facility..
I'm not the first to bemoan the fact that perhaps half of the publicly accessible Kiwis are performing very poorly from an RF point of view. But what can be done? Not everyone is au fait with the word of microvolts and differential/common mode signals. So how can a receiver like the Kiwi be made as close to plug and play at the RF socket at it is at the data socket? It's sad to see the investment made in receivers that are either deaf or swamped by external electrical noise and digital hash.
Perhaps if a second generation Kiwi is born it would be time to think about the optimum RF front end? So that's why I've started this thread for discussion.
I was triggered by the comment regarding the possible inclusion of a balun on the main PCB . The balun is a mixed blessing as a concept. On one hand it breaks the galvanic connection. But it introduces a frequency limit that wasn't there before. Finding a cheap small balun effective from below 100kHz to above 30Mhz is likely an non-starter.
Many live KiwSDRs could benefit from have a notch filter to remove a high power local "pest". Others would benefit from decent management of earth loops and so on.
I've a few ideas on what a new front end might look like but I'm sure that I can't be the only one interested in this topic?
What do you think?