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Thread: USB FM RDS Solution with sofware

  1. #401
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    Reception while driving

    I have read this thread and lots of people are asking what the reception is like while driving. I have installed my USB radio in my van and use the factory fitted ariel. I used an ariel connector (which happened to be connected on the end of a wire) from an old head unit and soldered it directly to the USB radio:





    I have written my own front-end, and with the use of Wickerswammie's USBRadio.dll and a VB6 sample code 'SilabTest' I managed to implement the radio in my VB.net project. I find the reception excellent, not quite as good a quality as listening to the CD player or MP3 player, but radios never are.

    The RDS is a little bit slow at displaying the station you are tuned too, but the radio text is jumbled. Apart from that the radio works very well, and the signal strength data that can be obtained from the radio is always about 75%. For for the price, it is a must for all car computers. Even with 50Gb of MP3's, it's always nice to listen to the radio now and again.

    I'm only speaking from experience in England, it might not be as good in America and other countries, but over here it works fine
    ViVE - Volkswagen In Van Entertainment:

    VoomPC 2, VIA C7 2GHz
    7" Lilliput
    120Gb Sata drive
    1GB RAM


    [||||||||||] 100% - Planning
    [||||||||||] 100% - Software coding
    [||||||||||] 100% - Built

    (Always tweaking!)

  2. #402
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    Right, I have an update. In bad wind and rain the RDS is very poor on the USB radio, but the sound quality stays the same.
    ViVE - Volkswagen In Van Entertainment:

    VoomPC 2, VIA C7 2GHz
    7" Lilliput
    120Gb Sata drive
    1GB RAM


    [||||||||||] 100% - Planning
    [||||||||||] 100% - Software coding
    [||||||||||] 100% - Built

    (Always tweaking!)

  3. #403
    Constant Bitrate Beezer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by portreathbeach View Post
    I have written my own front-end, and with the use of Wickerswammie's USBRadio.dll and a VB6 sample code 'SilabTest' I managed to implement the radio in my VB.net project. I find the reception excellent, not quite as good a quality as listening to the CD player or MP3 player, but radios never are.

    The RDS is a little bit slow at displaying the station you are tuned too, but the radio text is jumbled. Apart from that the radio works very well, and the signal strength data that can be obtained from the radio is always about 75%.

    Try my new radio.dll here http://code.google.com/p/silabsradiodll/

    You must check the SilabsTest app & implement the new commands.

  4. #404
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    Hi Beezer,

    I have just downloaded the new usbradio.dll and the source code. After re-programming the FM Radio form of my front-end, I have now implemented RDS text and get the Station name coming up much more quickly than before. I never used Radio Text before, as it was all jumbled. This new USBRadio.dll is far better than the previous one and when programming in VB.NET, the RDS is a lot easier to get hold of (simpler commands and functions)

    The Radio mute works much better now. Before I had to turn the USB radio off when going to my MP3 player because of the hiss in the background. Then sometimes when I went back to use the radio, it wouldn't start properly. The radio mute works fine now

    Thanks for the great DLL
    ViVE - Volkswagen In Van Entertainment:

    VoomPC 2, VIA C7 2GHz
    7" Lilliput
    120Gb Sata drive
    1GB RAM


    [||||||||||] 100% - Planning
    [||||||||||] 100% - Software coding
    [||||||||||] 100% - Built

    (Always tweaking!)

  5. #405
    Constant Bitrate Beezer's Avatar
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    Another satisfied customer

  6. #406
    Constant Bitrate Beezer's Avatar
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    I've released a new version of the DLL. Major change is to convert the audio streaming to use DirectShow & DirectSound. Give it a try. If you use Vista, see the note in the "filters" directory.

    http://code.google.com/p/silabsradiodll/downloads/list

  7. #407
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    Sep 2007
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    Colorado
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    I'm thinking of building one of these with the Si4734 and Si4707 chips, but I have no hardware design experience. I've written a support message to these guys, and I am wanting to build a portable player that incorporates both of these chips using 4 wire or I2C and a complete tuner/capture program.

    I think these chips can do it, but again, without hardware experience, it's hard to say. Anyone interested?

  8. #408
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    West Virginia
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    Quote Originally Posted by portreathbeach View Post
    I have read this thread and lots of people are asking what the reception is like while driving. I have installed my USB radio in my van and use the factory fitted ariel. I used an ariel connector (which happened to be connected on the end of a wire) from an old head unit and soldered it directly to the USB radio:





    I have written my own front-end, and with the use of Wickerswammie's USBRadio.dll and a VB6 sample code 'SilabTest' I managed to implement the radio in my VB.net project. I find the reception excellent, not quite as good a quality as listening to the CD player or MP3 player, but radios never are.

    The RDS is a little bit slow at displaying the station you are tuned too, but the radio text is jumbled. Apart from that the radio works very well, and the signal strength data that can be obtained from the radio is always about 75%. For for the price, it is a must for all car computers. Even with 50Gb of MP3's, it's always nice to listen to the radio now and again.

    I'm only speaking from experience in England, it might not be as good in America and other countries, but over here it works fine
    Hello I have been working with my silabs usb radio for a little bit and while it does get some reception, it doesn't get as good of reception as what my old radio used to. Before I got power to it, it was hardly getting any radio at all. The thing is, mine doesn't look like those in all of the pictures I have seen in the forums here. When I took mine out of the casing, the antenna was fastened to the PCB on a metal square piece and that was it. I assume maybe it was connected to the ground plane somehow in the middle, but I don't know. When I soldered the coax to it, I put the core of the wire in the big hole left by the antenna and took the foil/shield wires to the outer casing of the usb. Did I do this correctly? I would assume it should sound better than it does currently. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

  9. #409
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    West Virginia
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    Bump. Anyone? it is the Brando USB radio with the Silabs chip like the one in this thread:

    http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/cent...adio-work.html

    Nobody is replying over there either.

  10. #410
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    bump

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