JackAl now on Sale

Jack Purdum
 

All:

QRP Guys is ready to take orders for the JackAl support board for the µBITX. A link to a list of its feature set, a video of it in action, and some photos can be seen at

http://hamradiodesigns.com/index.php/photos/

Note that the AGC implements both audio and IF AGC. (The appendix to the manual shows a plot of its characteristics.) DSP filters are available, including user-defined filters (CUST in figure below). A CW keyer and decoder are also included. The main screen looks like this:



The decoded CW can be seen along the bottom. (In all honesty, that is a guy sending almost perfect code at about 22wpm. I'm still playing with the decoder and expect some really smart user to make it much better. It's got real possibilities as it is based on the FFT bin counts.)

QRP Guys is offering the JackAl board for $40 for the first 50 boards. After those are gone, the price will be $50. Shipping in the CONUS is $5 and DX is $15. This is what the JackAl board you'll get looks like:




The board has all of the SMD's mounted (including the Si5351 and the display buffer IC). The user does have to supply additional parts: A Teensy 3.6 and associated audio board (both from PJRC.com) and either a 5" or 7" TFT touch screen display (BuyDIsplay.com). You should also consider case size when you select your display size. (Note: BuyDisplay.com has actual sizes for each display and they are measured like a TV, so the case can be smaller than you think.)  If addition, there are some IC's, connectors, audio isolation xfmrs, and header pins that most of you will want to add. The cost of these additional parts should be less than $15 depending on your junk box. The board with these in place looks like this:




The connectors are not required but, since you are also give about a dozen free I/O pins for experimenting, you may want to add them. (The yellow pins above are test points.) The attached doc file lists the parts needed and their likely cost.

The assembly manual should be online at our web site, probably tomorrow. This is an intermediate to advanced semi-kit project. Our intention is to not only give the µBITX additional capability, but to serve as a platform for experimentation, which we hope you will share with the rest of us. You will have approximately 700K of flash and 200K of SRAM free for your inventive side to exploit. Al and I already have some (software) extensions we want to implement. Note JackAl does NOT fix the harmonic or spur issues. However, our test µBITX's right out of the box were well within spec for 80 and 40 meters and spot on for 20M. (15M and 10M, not so much.) If you have doubts about your µBITX, check it out. It could well be that your favorite band is within spec. (If you don't have a spectrum analyzer, check with members of your club or the physics department of your local high school,. junior college, or university. Most will be glad to help.)

If you have specific questions, rather than take bandwidth here, I'll be posting an "info" email address here, probably later today or tomorrow for sure. In any event, take a peek at JackAl. Al and I think you'll really like what you see.

Jack, W8TEE
Al, AC8GY

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