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Author Topic: Icom IC-R8600 Wideband Receiver  (Read 44531 times)
K5TED
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Posts: 95




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« on: September 01, 2016, 03:23:43 PM »

The IC-R8600 replaces the IC-R8500 wideband receiver and will feature the technology incorporated into Icom’s best selling IC-7300.

The IC-R8600 will be able to receive a wide frequency range from 0.01-3000MHz frequency in analogue and various digital modes (D-STAR, P25, NXDN and dPMR). The IC-R8600 will feature a larger 4.3 inch touch screen display which will feature fast moving spectrum scope and waterfall display.

Tabletop SDR receiver? Woo Hoo! These are exciting times for radio. http://www.universal-radio.com/catalog/widerxvr/0086.html
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KK4YDR
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« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2016, 09:45:13 PM »

This is exciting. lets just hope that it doesn't cost as much as the IC-7300 because that would not be a good move.

I might buy one of the price is worth it. I have been wanting a good SWL receiver. I use my HAM radios for SWL 99.99% of the time but it would be nice on nights I only want to listen and not have to fire the whole shack up.

here is a video ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdO2Gqhf4ng
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PITSWL
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« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2016, 08:06:49 AM »

http://swling.com/blog/2016/08/icoms-announcement-includes-two-new-receivers-the-ic-r8600-and-ic-r30/
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"Section 97.101(d) prohibits ALL amateur licensees from causing harmful interference, and does not provide ANY exception for interference caused to other amateurs whom the interferer believes have violated a Commission rule." - DA 16-877 at 17
N8YX
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« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2016, 11:14:09 AM »

Briefly looked at it and the IC-7300.

If there is support for an external monitor on each of those radios, I may have found my next set of twins.
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PITSWL
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« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2016, 07:33:16 AM »

Briefly looked at it and the IC-7300.

If there is support for an external monitor on each of those radios, I may have found my next set of twins.

Unfortunately you'll probably be waiting for the IC-7610 for a video out.

That said, both the 7300 and the 8600 have a built-in IF output, which makes pairing either with, for instance, an SDRPlay a simple thing, giving you both a second receiver and access to a bunch of software platforms. Even Icom's remote software (which doesn't rely on the IF out) gives you an effective view of the screen, as well as a dedicated waterfall display superior to that on the device.
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"Section 97.101(d) prohibits ALL amateur licensees from causing harmful interference, and does not provide ANY exception for interference caused to other amateurs whom the interferer believes have violated a Commission rule." - DA 16-877 at 17
K6BRN
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Posts: 458




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« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2016, 06:55:01 AM »

The ICOM IC-7300 IF is purely digital and internal.  To the best of my knowledge, and having used one, it does NOT have an analog (or digital) IF output port, despite early report (pre-release) that it did.  The USB port only provides baseband audio input/output, not IF.

Brian - K6BRN
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K5TED
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« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2016, 08:24:22 PM »

Wrong.. It actually provides 12kHz IF output selectable at the USB port, as described in the manual, which can drive HDSDR or similar. Using HDSDR, SoDiRa, Rocky, or DReaM, it should work fine.

Page 12-7 in the full manual:

Connectors
ACC/USB Output Select (Default: AF)
Selects the signal output from [ACC] and [USB].
••AF: AF signal is output.
••IF: A 12 kHz IF signal is output.
L You can listen to the Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM)
broadcast with the application software receiver that
is installed into your PC.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2016, 08:34:29 PM by K5TED » Logged
K6BRN
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« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2016, 12:32:03 AM »

Hi Ted:

My bad - you're the MAN!

The full manual does SAY that a very narrow-band 12 KHz IF stream is available on the IC-7300 - and may be useful for DRM.

But this is a little misleading... (OK, a LOT misleading)

The IC-7300 "IF" is not in any way equivalent to a conventional receiver IF output which usually has a bandwidth of 300-500 KHz or more, not just 12 KHz.

So a second "search" receiver attached to the IC-7300 IF is a moot point, unless you are OK being restricted to signals within a few KHz of the main receiver - not too useful.

But alternate/external narrow-band waveform demodulation - like DRM.  Maybe.  Has anyone gotten this to work?

And a 12 KHz bandscope width?  Again, not too useful.

All the best...

Brian - K6BRN



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K5TED
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Posts: 95




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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2016, 02:15:51 PM »

Not really fair to Icom to call their clearly defined feature description, "misleading".

There might be "misinterpretation" by some readers. Icom can't be responsible for that.

12kHz IF out is really useful if you need a 12kHz IF output for some reason. It seems like an afterthought or "hey we can do this too" sort of feature, since it uses the same port one would use for digi modes. It's either/or, so in that respect kind of clunky.

1. The advertised DRM decoding, which, for most U.S. listeners, is fairly nonexistent these days. Too bad, really. It is a cool mode and has become popular elsewhere in the world. I suspect that in Japan and elsewhere in the East, it is a player, since they can more easily receive the China, India and Russia DRM stations. There are also some European broadcasters using it for local low power stations. Apparently, of late, the USCG has begun using DRM for the Journaline mode. Maybe of interest to MilComm'ers and shortwave enthusiasts. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ttXgXkoSqG0 Decoder software is mostly free.

2. AM Stereo decoding using SoDiRa. Evidently, there are still AM Stereo broadcasters using C-Quam http://woapradio.com/o/landing/ Fun for MW hobbyists

3. Monitoring split or multiple nearby frequencies in one ear and the main in the other. (HDSDR is great for this, Not sure if the 7300 does this natively)






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K6BRN
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Posts: 458




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« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2016, 07:17:57 PM »

Ted:

I was referring to your statements that implied the IC-7300 had a USEFUL IF output.  Not Icom's.  Perhaps you could have said:  "An unconventional, narrowband IF output that might be useful in some future applications."  'Cause right now, it's usefulness is pretty limited.

DRM?  That really did not pan out too well, at least, not yet.

Stereo AM?  OK.  How's that working?  Mmmmm.

Monitoring nearby frequencies will be pretty limited.  They will need to be withing a few KHz.  As in "interfering".

Basically, the IF output of the IC-7300 is an output port looking for an application.  Maybe they will continue and expand this into a better capability and standard on the IC-7610.  We'll see.

Brian - K6BRN

Brian - K6BRN
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K5TED
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Posts: 95




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« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2016, 09:28:59 PM »

Ted:

I was referring to your statements that implied the IC-7300 had a USEFUL IF output.  Not Icom's.  Perhaps you could have said:  "An unconventional, narrowband IF output that might be useful in some future applications."  'Cause right now, it's usefulness is pretty limited.

DRM?  That really did not pan out too well, at least, not yet.

Stereo AM?  OK.  How's that working?  Mmmmm.

Monitoring nearby frequencies will be pretty limited.  They will need to be withing a few KHz.  As in "interfering".

Basically, the IF output of the IC-7300 is an output port looking for an application.  Maybe they will continue and expand this into a better capability and standard on the IC-7610.  We'll see.

Brian - K6BRN

Brian - K6BRN

DRM has been a standard for over a decade. That it is not familiar to some hobbyists is irrelevant. The technical spec for the provided port on the R8600 is well documented.
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AG6JU
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« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2016, 06:54:51 PM »

Until about year 2000, I used to listen to Shortwave Radio a lot.  It was even more useful in 1980-1995.  Before Internet become popular.  Unfortunately most of Good Shortwave broadcast station cease to exist, I can not hear much of Radio Netherlands, BBC, VOA, Radio Australia, anymore. Many of English shortwave broadcast seems like Religious Stations, not much news.  I have TECSUN PL-660 receiver, it is good receiver with synchronous AM detector. This radio would been very nice to have in 1980's and 1990's, but now I do not use it much anymore. 
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G1HBE
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Posts: 5




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« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2017, 09:55:36 AM »

New to this thread, sorry to dredge it up just to bang on about a few things.
I've always liked Icom receivers and I thought the 7000 and 7100 were classy radios. Then I found AOR and had a 5000 followed by a 5001d.
The Icom 8600 might just tempt me back. My guess is that this is a hybrid SDR, rather like the AOR AR5001d.  Up to a certain frequency the receiver is a direct-sampling SDR, with great chunks of the spectrum presented more or less directly to the front-end ADC. In the AR5001d this upper limit is at 25 MHz, but I would expect the Icom to go higher as it seems to share much of its technology with the IC7300 which direct-samples up to 54 MHz.
Above this frequency, a traditional double-conversion superhet arrangement down-converts the incoming spectrum to a fixed IF where it is sampled by a separate  ADC before going for processing.
Info is annoyingly sparse at the moment, so I'm wondering what resolution the front-end ADC has, as this governs the available dynamic range. The AOR uses a 14-bit ADC, which on paper gives a dynamic range of approx 84dB.  A 16 bit one as used in the 7300 would give us 96 dB, but is more expensive.
The other thing which I'd like to know is how the display can be configured. The ad shots look very busy and I would find it a bit much. A way of simplifying it to a large spectrum/waterfall with just the tuned frequency on show would be nice.
Also, is the spectrum above (say) 1 Ghz converted down by a fixed down-converter, like in the IC-R7000/7001/8500? I found the performance of these pretty limited.
My hammer is poised over the piggy-bank at the moment. I suppose we'll have to wait and see!
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PITSWL
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« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2017, 08:27:52 AM »

My hammer is poised over the piggy-bank at the moment. I suppose we'll have to wait and see!

I'm right there with you.
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"Section 97.101(d) prohibits ALL amateur licensees from causing harmful interference, and does not provide ANY exception for interference caused to other amateurs whom the interferer believes have violated a Commission rule." - DA 16-877 at 17
G1HBE
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« Reply #14 on: March 16, 2017, 04:48:30 AM »

It's looking very likely that this receiver will not decode DMR, which is a major boo-boo. Here in the UK, DMR is the most common digital mode and I wouldn't spend £2000 on an 'all singing' radio that can't handle it. Pity, as I was all fired up!
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