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Thread: RF Explorer Spectrum Analyzer - Now 6GHz supported!

  1. #281
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Madrid, Spain
    We are happy to introduce the new RF Explorer 3G+ IoT modules, with direct support for Arduino and Raspberry Pi platforms.

    These modules are cost-effective platforms to develop your own customized Spectrum Analyzer, Power Detector, RF activity alarm, RF sniffer, RF QA test bench, etc.

    Programmability and network capabilities of the hosting platform enables remote control and diagnosis scenarios, fully automated RF alarm systems, advanced assistance for unattended detection requirements such as those of radio operators, cell towers and HAM stations. These modules are also small and low weight so you can add it onboard on any FPV plane or quadcopter and use to scan the flight area to detect interferers.

    RF Explorer 3G+ IoT boards are delivered in two configuration modes:

    • Raspberry Pi
    • Arduino and compatible boards (3.0 – 3.3V only)

    We recommend Raspberry Pi mode for advanced usage and more powerful libraries, and Arduino for simpler, non-Linux software libraries related development.

    For added flexibility, these two boards can be easily re-converted between modes by soldering a required connector:

    • Raspberry Pi Hat can be converted to Arduino Shield by soldering standard 0.1” male headers to the PCB
    • Arduino Shield can be converted to Raspberry Pi Hat by soldering a 26x2 0.1” female header to the PCB

    Designed in this way, it is easy to reconvert the board to a different hosting platform with no extra cost if you have different needs down the road.

    Furthermore, other platforms such as BeagleBoard, Chip, Chipkit, Teensy all them can easily control a RF Explorer 3G+ IoT by manually connecting it to standard UART port.

    Where to buy RF Explorer IoT Modules

    Currently available at SeeedStudio:

    • RF Explorer 3G+ IoT for Raspberry Pi: link
    • RF Explorer 3G+ IoT for Arduino: link

    Most of our distributors will eventually have them available.

    RF Explorer 3G+ IoT Specifications

    • Includes the advanced 3G+ MWSUB3G RF Explorer module
    • Frequency band coverage: 15-2700 MHz
    • Standard SMA 50 ohms connector
    • Advanced selectable internal input stage: Normal, LNA, 30dB Attenuator
    • Amplitude resolution: 0.5dBm
    • Dynamic range: -130dBm to +10dBm
    • Absolute Max input power: +30dBm
    • Average noise floor level (typical with LNA enabled): -120dBm
    • Frequency stability and accuracy (typical): +-10ppm
    • Amplitude stability and accuracy (typical): +-3dBm
    • All modules are factory calibrated
    • Frequency resolution: 1Khz
    • Resolution bandwidth (RBW): automatic 3KHz to 600KHz
    • Protected with resettable fuse
    • Power consumption: 100-500mW

    For more details, please visit www.rf-explorer.com/IoT

  2. #282
    Happy New Year!

    I recently got my HAM license so I could take advantage of the various frequencies that opened up for RC and FPV use, but I recognize I still have much to learn. I could easily see the value of the RFE, so placed a 6G combo on order last night along with some other goodies like attenuators...then decided to actually learn how it was used. Nice to find a thread here on RCG with active support! While I've been able to answer many of my questions, I do still have a few...

    1) Any plans to fill the 2700 to 4850MHz gap in the future? I currently fly with 3.3GHz FPV gear and it would be nice to evaluate my equipment and verify the Rf environment for that band.

    2) Directional couplers come in a dizzying array of dB, ranges, ohms, and prices. For just testing RC gear, are the broadband ones (like 1 - 18Gz) fine or would it be better (more accurate) to get some narrower band ones to cover my needs? Seems the brand name narrow band ones, such as Narda, can be found for ~$30, so it could be cheaper in long run. Also, am I correct in the assumption that the normalization process factors in whatever dB changes are inherent in the coupler, so is that an important characteristic to look for when shopping or no?

    3) There are many references to high power & low power throughout this thread, but until I get a better understanding of what’s considered high & low, what’s a safe point to add an attenuator when reading through air? I only anticipate dealing with normal RC gear up to 2W (TBS Crossfire), and my HAM handy talkies that do 4-5W, as well as checking conditions at whatever flying field I end up at.

    4) Just to ensure I understand how it works, the RF Explorer power limiter is limited to 3000MHz, so I can’t use it as an attenuator when testing 5.8GHz FPV gear? If that's true, then is it worth it for my RC needs?


  3. #283
    Tks @arocholl so much

  4. #284
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Madrid, Spain
    Hi Mark, answered here

  5. #285
    Chalk up another win for the RF Explorer! I was having issues getting GPS signal on the FPV Strix Stratosurfer I had just set up with a Cyclops Tornado flight controller. Everything worked fine on the bench so I knew it was something to do with my installation.

    1st step was to replace the known poor quality GPS cable, but that didn't fix it. I was about ready to tear my plane apart and start hitting it with the parts shotgun when I remembered to pull out my RF Explorer 6G and start sniffing about. The GPS was located near the Runcam Eagle, and when I powered up I found a 5 - 10dB increase around 1575MHz between the cam & GPS; ~1575MHz is one of the GPS frequencies.

    I grabbed a 12in servo lead and installed an LC filter and wrapped it about 7 times through a ferrite toroid to install in the camera power/signal line, but the RF Explorer showed that didn't clean it up enough, so next step was to move the GPS antenna out on the wing.

    The RF Explorer definitely saved me time & treasure, thanks for making a simple and powerful tool that a hammer tech like myself can use successfully!

  6. #286
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Madrid, Spain
    Quote Originally Posted by Fyathyrio View Post
    Chalk up another win for the RF Explorer!


    The RF Explorer definitely saved me time & treasure, thanks for making a simple and powerful tool that a hammer tech like myself can use successfully!

    Thanks for the feedback and sharing your troubleshooting experience, definitely a wise use of the instrument. We are happy it helped to fix your setup.

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