Earlier this week I got in touch with Steve Ireland (VK6VZ) after reading his column in Radcom to see if I could get some guidance as to if there were any SDR products that he knew of to be used as a beacon monitoring station. My little project will hopefully be able to use an SDR of some sort coupled together with a small form factor PC such as a mini-itx and the Faros program to monitor beacons and provide real time data to this site across all the bands.
??Steve suggested that I contacted Alex (VE3NEA) the author of Faros to see if he’d got any information and it looks like there may be a partial success with a Softrock kit or if?? am patient there is a project which is currently as a prototype board call Mercury that looks like a real prospect. So a summary so far is:
Softrock 40 – Cheap, Can be used on 14Mhz apparently, Single band only
Mercury – Large bandwidth (192KHz – These can be allocated either as one lump or as 5 off 1 Khz segments to cover all beacon frequencis according to Alex).
??So not quite an off the self solution available but I’ll keep on updating when I get some news. Altough it does look like a softrock 40 needs to be purchased in order to have a good look at this as an option.