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Thread: FM/DAB digital radio - THAT WORKS!!

  1. #651
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    Quote Originally Posted by soyfish View Post
    On the issue of noise, increasing the volume of the unit via the DAB_Master certainly helped with mine and my mast antenna. I have a small amount of alternator whine now, and have one of those filters mentioned above on order to see if that resolves it.
    The problem with that is that you have to have the line-in gain very low and that leaves you without a proper volume range for the radio. There really shouldn't be any ground loop noise at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by nrgizerbunny View Post
    wolvers, there are a couple of things to check.

    If you've installed a new antenna (or even if its the existing) check the base of the antenna is grounded. Car bodies are galvanised and a bit of sandpaper under the locking nut could be enough to sort your problem out.

    also check your line in cable is double screened.

    Additionally the radios I built have switchcraft connectors, you could try swapping the one on the board to that type but you need to check with craig for warranty and all that.

    finally if you get stuck, send it to me and i'll have a look (I am in the uK)
    Thanks for the pointers. I checked the ground of the aerial yesterday by attaching a fly lead to the base of the of it, and an earth point, and it made no difference.

    I also checked the line-in cable and the rest of the assembly by plugging an MP3 player into it and there is no noise at all.

    This points the finger directly at the Venice7M unit and I believe Enforcer was spot on with the idea that it is looping through the ground of the aerial as the noise stops when the aerial is disconnected from the DAB module. How do I break this loop? Should the DAB radio be able to do this or is there a design flaw here somewhere?

    I have one thing that I will try today, and that is a USB sound card for the line-in.

  2. #652
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    This suggests that the aerial is indeed grounding through the outer bit of the coax to ground.

    You could try a 3.5mm cable with the ground disconnected. All of the grounds eventually go to the car chassis so this might work. worth a pop - a trip to maplins might be in order.
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  3. #653
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    OK, so I've disconnected the ground on the 3.5mm cable and it hasn't cleared the noise. Interestingly though, the noise is still there when the aerial is disconnected now, so now I'm thinking of reconnecting the audio ground and disconnecting the aerial ground? Or will that just kill the signal?

    Edit; made some progress. Found a cable kicking around of a better quality, double screened type (like an RCA lead), and that has gotten rid of most of the noise but not all of it (especially the high pitched ignition noise). TBH I don't understand why as there was no noise with the other cable and the MP3 player. A bit confusing really but I'll still try removing the aerial ground to see if that helps. Not giving up yet.

  4. #654
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    isolate the audio ground, with ground loop isloator
    (that why they make em, PRO audio uses them all the time!!!)
    (specailly at concerts, course they use JENSEN audio formers)
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  5. #655
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    For whatever reason when i clear the saved station list from within settings it reverts back to the previously saved list.
    Added to my notes. I will check and have it fixed in the next build.

    Also in addition to my previous feature request ( first 10 station saved under preset 1 and next 10 under preset 2 and so on) could we have the ability to change the name of the plugin under settings so my display name could be whatever i choose?
    Do you mean so you could name it like DAB Radio on the plugins list?

    What are everyone's thoughts on sound quality? There's no doubt that it is clear and crisp but I find it has a significant lack of bass. I don't know if that is related to the fact that it is connected via line in, or maybe because of my sound card.
    Have you made sure all "effects" are disabled on your sound card? I had this problem when playing standard MP3s. Amps tend not to like it.

    Would like to connect an additional DAC (Wolfson), but the firmware has not enabled the I2S output (I have heard).
    Without payment of a large fee to Frontier Silicon, this isn't going to be possible I am afraid.

    For Windows XP, the plugin does not work without net framework 3.5, installed it and it works under cf3.1
    CF 3.2 will require this and install this out of the box anyway so that won't be a problem in the future. Our plugin will feature as part of 3.2.

    We should eventually get DAB+ in the UK
    I keep reading it will happen before the planned 2015 of licensed FM broadcasting which is good.

    Craig - might be worth documenting? Maybe a "pre-requisite" section that goes out with the purchase email?
    Yes, this will be happening. I have my developer changing the code to our members area so it will actually work with physical products. We are a software development house so it was designed with that in mind. We never planned to begin selling hardware - the opportunity just presented itself and it happened. When this does happen, orders will be traceable via the members area and documentation will be emailed when you place the order and on dispatched.

    If Craig could confirm that then please?

    Just to be clear, when I say interference I'm talking about a high pitched noise from the ignition and alternator whine which I don't get from the Silabs (or the CarPC at all in fact).
    I am using the same components as nrgizerbunny was so doubt this is the problem. As Enforcer said, it is more likely to do with the grounding of your antenna / aerial. I had two problems in my car when I first fitted. The first was down to me not using ferrited cable and the other was I never correctly connected the aerial to 12v and grounded it. As soon as I fixed these problems, all interference was gone.

  6. #656
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    Quote Originally Posted by soyfish View Post
    On the issue of noise, increasing the volume of the unit via the DAB_Master certainly helped with mine and my mast antenna. I have a small amount of alternator whine now, and have one of those filters mentioned above on order to see if that resolves it.
    What interests me this DAB_Master to increase the volume of the DAB module.

  7. #657
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    Quote Originally Posted by arachnidia View Post
    What interests me this DAB_Master to increase the volume of the DAB module.
    Further back in the forum there is a download for DAB_Master to control the unit directly. It was mentioned that when the volume for the unit was lowered some noise crept in, so it was best to max out the volume on the radio via DAB_Master and then control the volume with CF or Windows.

    Hope that helps, Tom.

  8. #658
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    The standalone plugin I produce and the CF plugin have an option in settings to reset the volume to full as it should be.

  9. #659
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    I received my unit last friday, nicely packaged, but no instructions what so ever (even if I didnīt need them).

    Installed the unit in my Win7 x64 computer along with the standalone software. First impression, wow this REALLY WORKS!!

    I donīt have any antenna that fits the plug yet so I just tested with my finger as antenna (which normally works on most analog receivers) and with this I got real good reception nothing to complain about. Comparing to other USB units I havenīt gotten any reception at all with the same computer with the unit placed on the same place on my desk. Really good!

    Need to get this installed in my car ASAP now for testing!

    One thing I noticed about the soldering thou, not very proffesional and even not all solder pads were soldered, big lumps of solder instead of nice and tidy soldering.

    About the standalone software still, first time I started it, it switched from on to off all time until I manually clicked the on/off button. I believe I used the latest version, http://www.craigbrass.net/standalone.zip, downloaded on friday. Didnīt test more than one start.

    The plugin for RR, is it included in the latest release already?

    All in all, very good! Thank you!

  10. #660
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    The RR plugin has full control over the unit's volume as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by craigbrass View Post
    I am using the same components as nrgizerbunny was so doubt this is the problem. As Enforcer said, it is more likely to do with the grounding of your antenna / aerial. I had two problems in my car when I first fitted. The first was down to me not using ferrited cable and the other was I never correctly connected the aerial to 12v and grounded it. As soon as I fixed these problems, all interference was gone.
    I don't believe that there is an issue with the aerial, the grounding and 12v supply has been checked and is fine. It's also connected to the Silabs tuner and that has no interference at all, in fact it's much improved (signal wise) with the new aerial. I will however double check the grounding again at the connector to be 100% sure.

    I'm not totally convinced that this unit should be able to loop back through the aerial, or any other attached device at all. Should it really require 'special' cables or noise suppressors, especially when it is supposed to be 'tweaked for the Car PC environment to avoid interference'? If it does require something specific like this then shouldn't it be supplied with, or incorporated into, the unit?

    Quote Originally Posted by craigbrass View Post
    Have you made sure all "effects" are disabled on your sound card? I had this problem when playing standard MP3s. Amps tend not to like it.
    MP3s sound great and have lots of bass, DAB doesn't.

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