Announcing the FUNcube Dongle Pro+

Folks

The new FUNcube Dongle Pro+

The new FUNcube Dongle Pro+ offers the following features and enhancements:

o Full coverage of all amateur bands from 136kHz through HF, 6m, 2m, 4m, 2m, 1.25m, 70cm, 33cm, 23cm (150kHz-240MHz and 420MHz-1.9GHz, 70kHz-150kHz coverage through your software’s NCO offset)
o 0.5ppm TCXO
o 192kHz sampling rate
o Eleven discrete front end filters
o Super sharp SAW filters on 2m and 70cm
o No extra device drivers
o Mid October 2012 availability

You can register your interest here, where you’ll receive personal email notification of product availablity.

Many thanks, Howard

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70 Responses to Announcing the FUNcube Dongle Pro+

  1. Mark N8MH says:

    Yeah! Whoooo! Better than than the iPhone 5 :) Can’t wait to get one, Howard. Bravo.

    73,
    Mark N8MH

  2. Mike says:

    Great. Let’s hope it is easier this time!

  3. Jose EB5AGV says:

    This is great news!

    73 JOSE EB5AGV

  4. Brilliant, Howard! I was able to watch the live presentation from the
    AMSAT UK colloquium here in California. (You figure the time difference)
    Thanks to the chaps at BATC.TV
    I would like to thank you for all your hard work on the dongle, Howard.
    Very keen to try some things…
    73 de N8DEZ

  5. Baron says:

    Nice to see you today at Amsat Howard.

    Looking forward to handing over my cash, again!

    Baz G7KUF (Front row, asked about availability)

  6. Chris GW6KZZ says:

    Just watched the video from my sick bed Howard, sorry I could not attend the colloquium mother-in-law is critical in ICU and I have cancer and other problems again too. Well done on developing the new generation FunCube Dongle Pro + Howard, It looks a world beyond the previous version and have just registered my interest to obtaining one too. Best regards to all, Chris, GW6KZZ.

  7. sigi dg9bfc says:

    does the fcd plus receive below 420 megs?!?

    the specs say lw to 240 megs and 420 to 1.9 gig …. does it work outside those areas?!?

    i would need it for 400-410 megs

    dg9bfc sigi

    • Tlarion says:

      Same here (radiosonde monitoring).

    • admin says:

      Hello Sigi

      The limited characterisation I’ve done of the LO suggests that it stops between about 400 and 410MHz.

      As time permits I’ll see if we can improve on that.

      Many thanks, Howard

      • ea5wtf says:

        FCD Pro is used in OsmoTETRA,
        http://tetra.osmocom.org/trac/wiki/Funcube_Dongle , so will be very nice if somehow FCD Pro Plus can support 380-430 Mhz band.

        • admin says:

          Hello

          The FCD covers down to 420MHz (actually so far all the units go down to 410MHz, and about half down to 400MHz).

          I know I keep stating this, but the original reason for the FCD was to receive the 2m satellite band, 145.8 to 146MHz! Anything more is a bonus.

          I did look at how we could cover everything, but I would have needed to add an additional tuner or frequency converter. This would significantly add to the cost of the device, and going back to our original principals it didn’t seem justified.

          Many thanks, Howard

  8. Alan says:

    Saying “136kHz through HF” and quoting some amateur band wavelengths – oh very droll. No exactly helpful, chaps!
    If you are covering 136KHz through to 1GHz, you can tell us. If there are gaps in the coverage, you can tell us that, too. If this one is biased toward HF, and complements a “standard” Funcube (ie. get both for best spectrum coverage) you should jolly well say so UP FRONT.

    Leave vague misleading specifications to the charlatans.

    • admin says:

      Hello Alan

      Oh dear, I am very sorry that you feel that there is some conspiracy. It didn’t even cross my mind that it would be construed as such, in fact I thought it was more helpful that way.

      In fact, if you go to the shop link you’ll see it specified as the frequencies that are covered.

      The device will receive 150kHz-240MHz and 420MHz-1.9GHz.

      Thank you, Howard

    • Baron says:

      Alan, you appear a little to angry to own a dongle, so it’s probably better if you give it a miss.

      I, on the other hand, will wait patiently for the order button to be activated. :¬)

  9. Rich says:

    Your stuff is great, can’t wait to see the new model. So does the plus have the same Elonics tuner chip, or are you using something else? I heard Elonics went out of business….

  10. Peter Hutchison G4URT says:

    Howard,

    Hi – looks excellent – will it still work with SDR-Radio as the FCDpro does?

    Peter G4URT

    • admin says:

      Hello Peter

      As a sound card interface it will work, but some of the control interface has changed so we may have to persuade Simon to update SDR radio. The tuning interface is identical though.

      Many thanks, Howard

      • Peter Hutchison G4URT says:

        Howard,

        Many tnx for getting back – appreciate that you are a tad busy at the moment. GL in getting Simon to incoporate it into his SDR program -maybe we should all email him to try and persuade him!

        Regards, Peter

  11. Derek says:

    Any changes to the wide FM , will it now be possable to listen to wide band broadcast ?
    When you speak of 6m, 2m, 4m, 2m, 1.25m, 70cm, 33cm, 23cm how does that relate to the frequency please … (Sory novice here…)

  12. Youssef says:

    Your work is absolutely amazing! Looking forward to add official support in SDR#!

    Youssef

  13. Mourad 7X2US says:

    Hello,

    I wish you all the best, your product is unique in the world :)

    73′s QRO from Algiers, Algeria

    7X2US

  14. Kelvin Muthumani says:

    Hi,

    I was wondering if there is any upconverter in front of tuner chip, something like the hf upconverters that are around that enable you to receive hf on the funcube dongle, or does the tuner chip support HF.

    Kelvin

    • admin says:

      Hello Kelvin

      There tuner chip does have provision for HF directly, but we have added several switchable discrete front end filters to improve performance.

      Many thanks, Howard

      • Endaf Jones says:

        Can the filters be turned off if I’m tuning in a different band than what the filters are set for?

        • admin says:

          Hello Endat

          There is no way to completely switch off the front end filtering. It is however possible to select a different filter, although generally speaking I am not sure when you’d want to do that.

          Many thanks, Howard

  15. Karsten DO1ODW says:

    Using one the first FCD from the beginning :)
    Hopefully announcing changes fast to a Paypal buy Button ^^
    Always great work Howard.

  16. Derek says:

    Good news!
    Is there an upgrade path for FCD Pro to + ?

    Regards

    Derek G3WAG

    • admin says:

      Hello Derek

      The FCD Pro+ is almost a complete redesign: only the bias T circuit and the enclosure remain the same, so there is no upgrade path.

      Many thanks, Howard

  17. DJ says:

    Would have appreciated a higher sampling rate capability

    • admin says:

      Hello Dj

      I am sure. With the time frame I had this was not possible I am afraid. Please keep in mind why we originally designed the FUNcube Dongle!

      Many thanks, Howard

  18. Ramon EA1GTH says:

    Thanks Howard for your hard work: still I cannot believe it. It was great to meet you at the AMSAT Colloquium. I cannot wait to get the new FCD Pro+ to show it to my students at the university. Good luck with the compliance tests!!

  19. Jerry says:

    hello!
    the spec say,
    “o 192kHz sampling rate”
    Is the FCD Pro plus run on USB 2.0 and UAC 2.0 mode?

    o No extra device drivers”
    if it is USB/UAC 2.0 mode, it will need a vendored driver in general. How to explain no extra device drivers.
    thanks~~

    • admin says:

      Hello Jerry.

      No, 16 bit 192kHz is well within specification for USB 1.1. 16bits x 2 channels x 192kHz = 6.144Mbps.

      Don’t believe everything you read on the internet!

      Many thanks, Howard

  20. Konstantin RN3ZF says:

    Hi Howard, please show the video performance of the new Pro FUNcube Dongle +. Where you can watch videos from last kolokviuma? Thank you.
                                       Konstantin RN3ZF

  21. N8XYN says:

    I can’t wait, if you are into any part of the radio hobby this is a must have. Kind of a Swiss Army Knife radio device! All the things I can try and not go bankrupt in the process. Thanks :-)

  22. admin says:

    Hello Konstantin

    The link is here: http://www.batc.tv/vod/AMSAT%20session2.flv

    Many thanks, Howard

  23. Derek says:

    So are the HF frequencies covered 3.500 MHz to 29.700 MHz at all ?

  24. Hoernchen says:

    So, you’ve still not announced that the new fcdp will be using the mirics msi001/msi002 tuner? What’s with the secrecy?

    • admin says:

      Hello whoever you are!

      Or dear, there do seem to be a couple of conspiracy theorists out there! There is no secrecy. I have some rather more high priority things to deal with right now than discuss the intricacies of the FCD. If you have ever tried to bring a product to market you will understand.

      Patience is a virtue.

      Many thanks, Howard

  25. alexander says:

    this is a really good news, for sure !
    i hope to have one soon…

  26. mvs sarma says:

    hi Howard,
    The PRO+ is a great achievement.
    Thanks to MSI chips and especially
    the tedious effort putup by your team to realise that cute model covering almost evcerything one could imagine off .
    I fear, i am lackingwords to admire the design.

    Incidentally, with so dense a packing, can we expect iot tobehae well in normal temperature or it needs a special fridge to cool it, LoL.

    all the best and i am sure that this version from LF, MF, HFand what not would be sold like HOT cakes.

    regards
    sarma
    from Hyderabad,
    India

    • admin says:

      Hello Sarma.

      The unit gets warmish but certainly not toasty. Total power dissipation is under 1W, and that’s well distributed, no hot spots.

      Many thanks, Howard

  27. kb2pcn says:

    Howard,

    I’ve already pre-ordered the FCDPro+ over at ML&S… So that’s already in the bag (and I cant wait for it) -

    But, I was wondering, and, almost begging – if there was a way to get just one, possible original FCD Pro (non plus) as well, or has the window absolutely, undeniably, and irrevokably closed?

    I know it’s probably not something you could say here, but I’ve been searching high and low (or even looking for someone who’s selling their old one in light of the FCD Pro + happening.)

    Reasons? Compatibility and some coverage. I’ve already signed my name on the line for the Pro +, but surely there’s got to be some earthly way to procure one last original Pro?

    • admin says:

      Hello

      I honestly have no more original FCDs left for retail sale I’m afraid. They do appear on the FUNcube Yahoo group, and I am sure also on ebay from time to time.

      Many thanks, Howard

  28. Baron says:

    There is a FCD Pro on ebay with a Buy Now, and the auction ends in a coulple of days

  29. Waiting for eager, the availability of the product.

  30. Jim says:

    Why do they charge VAT on this receiver??

    This can be classified as “Amateur Radio Equipment” and shipped WITHOUT that fee…

    • admin says:

      Jim

      VAT is only charged if the shipping destination is within the European Union. It is not charged if you are outside the EU. That is why I separate out the VAT from the price.

      I don’t know where you are located so I am not sure exactly how to answer your question more fully.

      many thanks, Howard

  31. Paulo dos Santos says:

    Hi Howard,
    Congratulations for your remarkable work!
    I am a doctoral student conducting research in wireless technology and I would like to ask a couple of questions by email. Would that be too troublesome for you?
    Many thanks!
    Paulo

  32. Guido says:

    Hmmmmmm…
    Nothing between 240MHz and 420MHz?!

    • admin says:

      Hello Guido

      Yes, that’s right. What is it that you are trying to receive there?

      To cover this gap would add around GBP40 to the purchase price, so we didn’t consider that appropriate bearing in mind the primary purpose of the FCD is to cover only 145MHz for the FUNcube satellite.

      Many thanks, Howard

  33. Dave says:

    Hi Derek

    I realise this is an old thread but thought I would mention the different bands in simple terms

    You just have to remember 300 :o )
    6M = 300/6 = 50MHz

    2M = 300/2 = 150 MHz

    40M = 300/40 =7.5MHz

    Its as simple as that (or so I am led to believe)

    Dave

    • admin says:

      Hello Dave

      I remember my father explaining that to me when I was about 8 years old when I couldn’t understand why FM broadcast was in MHz and MW/LW was in metres. I was confused even further when on the TV bands they introduced arbitrary channel numbers, number that change depending on jurisdiction. No I couldn’t do the division in my head but I understood enough to realise it’s the same thing expressed in a different way. It wouldn’t by technology if there weren’t several way to describe the same thing.

      Many thanks, Howard

  34. stari says:

    What is your advice for antenna?

  35. Petr Maly says:

    I am sorry for a silly question, but I am totally new to SDR.
    What is the maximum bandwidth I can see at once, on the waterfall, for example?
    Is it HW dependent (192kHz?), or is it a matter of the SW in use?
    What bandwidth do the most used SW provide?
    Thanks, Petr

    • admin says:

      Hello Petr.

      Definitely not a silly question!

      The maximum span for the FCD+ is 192kHz. This is limited by hardware as well as the generic USB interface we use that doesn’t require drivers. It also means the FCD+ works with most software without having to have device-specific code.

      Most software will support 192kHz, although I believe a few are still around that are limited to 96kHz.

      Many thanks, Howard

  36. Petr Maly says:

    There are 9 filters at the front end, incl. narrow ones for 2m and 70cm.
    How are the filters managed? Can I switch some of them on/off manually? How are they selected automatically when I need to view frequency range that crosses their borders? My main intention is to use FCD for aligning filters, etc.
    Thanks, Petr

    • admin says:

      Hello Petr.

      The filters are selected inside the device automatically when the frequency is changed. The changeovers occur at:

      4MHz, 8MHz, 16MHz, 32MHz, 75MHz, 125MHz, 142MHz, 148MHz, 300MHz, 430MHz, 440MHz, 875MHz

      These filters are controlled in firmware, and some filter arrangements with certain frequencies would make no sense. For example, the signal path for HF is not the same as for VHF. Indeed, as well as 11 different filters, there are five different RF signal paths to further reduce front-end overloading.

      Probably the most work was choosing where to place the VHF filters around the band 2 broadcast band. Typically band 2 transmissions are the worst offenders for affecting front end performance in VHF. This explains the 75MHz and 125MHz cutoffs. They are sufficiently far away from band 2 such that they can be fabricated using off the shelf parts. In retrospect, I would have shifted the 125MHz down a little to 118MHz at the aviation NAV band edge. Making sharp no-tune low loss filters at VHF using off the shelf parts is an art!

      Many thanks, Howard

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