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Author Topic: Apache Labs 100 watt sdr T/R's  (Read 2653 times)
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W3RSW
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Rick & "Roosevelt"


« on: April 01, 2013, 06:53:57 PM »

May be a decent way to get a very nice sounding AM sdr, providing Apache Labs solves the customs and US distribution problems.  50kHz to 55mHz, all mode SDR. - Multiple GUI platforms accepted, somewhat open sourced and best of all 1/3 price of A direct conversion (ADC/FPGA) Flex.  Hope Apache gets their own GUI and software problems developed.


  https://apache-labs.com/   
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Mike/W8BAC
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« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2013, 09:29:22 PM »

Pardon me for nit picking Rick but saying

"May be a decent way to get a very nice sounding AM sdr, providing Apache Labs solves the customs and US distribution problems."

Implies some sort of customs/import problem. I have purchased two radios on two separate occasions from Apache Labs and have had no problems at all with shipping (2 day air) or customs. Nor have I come across a single complaint reported to the Apache forum. Aside from the fact that Homeland Security ripped open both imported boxes and did a bad job of taping them back together, the fed took little notice.

On the lack of a US dealer, that should change soon BUT in the mean time.... My first rig was a very early production rig that had two problems (learned later) Apache sent me a brand new rig FOC and covered the cost of sending the old to Chicago. Absolutely top notch customer service. I highly recommend the Apache Labs business model and by the way, the Hermes/Anan-10 is the bomb. Us smug, old codgers are buying them up left and right and splattering the bands with them! Grin Nothing like a third order distortion factor of -14 to get the neighbors attention.

Mike
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W3RSW
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Rick & "Roosevelt"


« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2013, 09:05:42 AM »

That's Good news Mike and first hand experience. Their sdr's really intrigued me so I'm glad you found that they are a good business outfit. 

My information, partially right it seems, came from "eham" reviews.  I am joining their yahoo board to stay abreast of developments.  For what it's worth, other than the low power Hermes board derivitve, customers still await the Apache 100's.  Note the special introductory pricing.  Are you in for one.?  Real curious what you find and hope its as advertised.

Getting a one box, medium power sdr xceiver at reasonable prices without having to lash up a bunch of stuff and getting software commensurate with the hardware has been much needed.  I'm really surprise a Ten Tec or similar in this country hasn't jumped on this bandwagon.  Can't believe that Flex wants beau coup for what essentially is a QS1R/E with 100 watt brick attached.  Guess it would eat into their overpriced sound card technology.
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Mike/W8BAC
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« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2013, 08:13:56 PM »

Quote
   For what it's worth, other than the low power Hermes board derivitve, customers still await the Apache 100's.  Note the special introductory pricing.  Are you in for one.?

For now Rick I am a Hermes fan with the 10 watt Anan-10 Apache Labs setup. I'm very happy, for now, with the Hermes 10 watt derivetive. As we text the 100 watt Hermes And Angelia (higher tech) rigs are about to ship.

I'm happy and having a blast with this stuff Rick. I have been using PowerSDR for years so the HPSDR open version releases are easy to adopt.

Keep readind the forum and get involved. Ask those questions.

Best Regards,
Mike
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W1AEX
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ANAN 100 SDR


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« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2013, 09:58:58 PM »

I have a friend who sold his Flex 5000A and picked up an Apache Labs AN-10 SDR. He loves it. I worked him on 75 meters in the SSB and AM modes and it sounded very clean driving his Acom amplifier. Warren - NR0V who works on the PowerSDR version used with the HPSDR platform added some enhancements for the AM mode that look interesting. I don't have too many details but it sounds like they have made changes to how the ALC intervenes with the AM signal generated. The release notes also talk about a few changes for AM reception too. Pages 4 and 5 of the user notes at the link below provide a bit of information about these changes. This all looks very interesting and if they can get the Angelia production line out there it should really shake things up.

http://openhpsdr.org/wiki/images/b/b4/POWERSDR_USER_NOTES.pdf

Competition among the SDR platforms that are out there should be a good thing for all of us who like to play with it. I hope Apache Labs can get a solid foothold in the market.

Rob W1AEX
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« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2013, 10:50:31 PM »

These run over Ethernet, right?
What is the delay through the system like compared to the flex 5000?
I see the 100D has an FPGA built in which does the radio processing right in the box, not the PC.
That should be real time, no? And run on even a crappy computer...
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Mike/W8BAC
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« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2013, 07:32:38 AM »

Brett,
Yes and no, the new Hermes and Angelia radios connect to your computer via ethernet. No latency problems due to this type of connection reported. Latency may be experianced when using vertual audio cables however.
The FPGA dose not replace the computer nor dose it reduce the amount of computing ability you will need. Some groups are experimenting with small form factor computers for on board use but that is still far off.

Mike
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N2DTS
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« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2013, 10:47:53 AM »

Looking at the web site and other info, I thought they had an FPGA on board that did the processing (like the new flex 6000 series) and used the ethernet to only control the radio and display the info.

The problem with the flex 5000 type rig seems to be the delay from processing the data in the windows computer, while the flex 6000 seems to process it in the FPGA.
Well, the ANAN radios have a FPGA on board....

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KF1Z
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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2013, 01:25:22 PM »

The FPGA does SOME of the processing, not all.
This is the case with Flex 6000 series, the Hermes board, QS1R, Perseus, and so on.

In DSP, there is always latency, processing takes time, no way around it.
The amount of time is the variable.

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W3RSW
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Rick & "Roosevelt"


« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2013, 02:27:20 PM »

Right Frank,
... and where to begin.

Here's a somewhat broken link to some of Phil, N8VB's thinking in development of the QS1R, a direct conversion ADC, FPGA, quadrature streams and USB to computer SDR. The QS1R also containing a quick 2 channel DAC audio chip on board to limit latency, particularly in CW operation.  Back peddling through the blog references yield  a bunch of other thoughts in the links that still work.

The QS1R is one of the better representatives of this technology at reasonable cost.

http://pcovington.blogspot.com/2007/10/history-of-hpsdr-mercury-and-quick.html

Much of the HPSDR development as well as Phil's departure from that program with a product of his own is outlined. All these guys are very bright. With help from those who've gone before, they ought to write their own "Crystal Fire" (invention of the transistor, etc.) or "Fire In The Valley" ("The making of the personal computer.")    ..or at least write it from an open architecture, amateur sort-of perspective.

Attached are a couple of pix's credited directly to Phil, N8VB showing the QS1R architecture and its DDC diagram.  This is very similar to Persus, Hermes, etc. as Frank mentioned.

This is considered third generation SDR.  Phil believes the next step is probably eliminating the FPGA once general purpose computers become fast enough with i/o memory speed and capacity to match.

(disclaimer, I have had a QS1R , rev. C , ser. no. 54 for a long time and run it along with the internet and other apps such as EasyPal simultaneously on an little ASRock Atom 330  Grin   All that runs the Atom uP to about 40% of capacity.  A modern $400 laptop would easily handle all this and more using 10% or less of capacity. )

I have had more fun, and learned more in the last few years from the SDR/T bucket that I ever imagined I would in this stage of my amateur "career."


* qs1r_revc_arch big.png (82.13 KB, 1112x858 - viewed 75 times.)

* qs1r_ddc big.png (88.32 KB, 1148x882 - viewed 72 times.)
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RICK  *W3RSW*
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« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2013, 02:29:49 PM »

Implies some sort of customs/import problem. I have purchased two radios on two separate occasions from Apache Labs and have had no problems at all with shipping (2 day air) or customs. Nor have I come across a single complaint reported to the Apache forum.

I had not heard of Apache Labs before seeing this post as I don't have any SDR gear or any plans to obtain SDR at least for now. Yo -Apache Labs SDR owners,  keep us posted on your new gear. I'm primarily interested in boatanchors for AM. But I have been impressed with the audio quality from SDR rigs I have heard on AM and will likely consider SDR when it comes time to replace my current HF rice box.

Don't know if it's the same e-ham thread referenced above, but the one I found just now initiated in November appears to be a concerted effort by two parties to foster criticism against Apache Labs. So after five months was the criticism warranted or is it just bunk?

73,
Brad
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Brad K4RT
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Rick & "Roosevelt"


« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2013, 02:47:43 PM »

and this one,
http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/10814

Saw the one you were referring to and I think Mike along with the number of users already having the Hermes based 10 watt board like them and have had generally positive experiences.  So we shall see about the longevity of the company.  Regardless, I expect some "major" will jump in the market soon with a reasonable cost SDR/T based on ADC/FPGA technology.

Concerning the two harpies, could they have been planted by others? Won't be the first time "Rockefeller used a few dirty tricks."
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« Reply #12 on: April 04, 2013, 04:37:45 PM »

Over a decade ago, Vanu Bose claimed that the processing for SDRs could be done on general-purpose processors. He based a company on it. I think it worked.  Wink  The company's AnyWave Appliance runs on a Mini-ITX single board computer with an i7 processor. Maybe they snuck an FPGA on the RF tranceiver board.


Quote
Phil believes the next step is probably eliminating the FPGA once general purpose computers become fast enough with i/o memory speed and capacity to match.
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N2DTS
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« Reply #13 on: April 04, 2013, 08:37:07 PM »

I have both tube (homebrew) and sdr, flex 5000, 3000, sdr-iq, and love the sdr stuff on receive, mostly for the band scope. The audio and filters can be fantastic.
Great stuff on TX also, at 25 watts carrier.
I do not do 25 watts AM so it does not really turn me on as a transmitter.
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flintstone mop
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« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2013, 06:27:20 AM »

Implies some sort of customs/import problem. I have purchased two radios on two separate occasions from Apache Labs and have had no problems at all with shipping (2 day air) or customs. Nor have I come across a single complaint reported to the Apache forum.

I had not heard of Apache Labs before seeing this post as I don't have any SDR gear or any plans to obtain SDR at least for now. Yo -Apache Labs SDR owners,  keep us posted on your new gear. I'm primarily interested in boatanchors for AM. But I have been impressed with the audio quality from SDR rigs I have heard on AM and will likely consider SDR when it comes time to replace my current HF rice box.

Don't know if it's the same e-ham thread referenced above, but the one I found just now initiated in November appears to be a concerted effort by two parties to foster criticism against Apache Labs. So after five months was the criticism warranted or is it just bunk?

73,
Brad
That is a glitch with eHam. There seems to be 2 members there who taunt anyone posting info or praising SDR (In the SDR forum!!). These individuals really hate Flex Radio products. Just click the red X by their call or post to IGNORE and you won't read anymore bad mouthing.
I'm all for the latest and greatest.
It took a little while for SDR and using a linear amplifier to be accepted here on AMFONE.
Fred
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Steve - K4HX
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« Reply #15 on: April 05, 2013, 07:50:34 PM »

Or just avoid eHam all together.
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« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2013, 05:55:19 AM »

Or just avoid eHam all together.

amen.
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Mike
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