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Author Topic: Does size matter  (Read 2414 times)
K7NHB
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Posts: 226




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« on: June 27, 2013, 09:43:07 AM »

Unfortunately I got a netbook for portable work and didn't notice it only had one audio jack. It can be configured for audio in or audio out but not both. So I got a Griffin imic that gives me stereo line level or mic level via USB to the netbook. But it is so small - like a stack of four or five poker chips. When I look at my older external sound blaster units, or SignaLink, I wonder how that little "hockey puck" can provide any quality sound - but it seems to spec/review out okay. In the sound control panel I can select 2 channel 16 bit 48K sampling.

I know electronics can be really tiny. But it's one thing of all the devices were that small. The fact that they are much larger makes me wonder what was left out?

Thank you and 73,
Paul K7NHB
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G4IJE
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Posts: 240




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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2013, 11:34:25 AM »

I'm not familiar with the Griffin imic but I use a really cheap USB "sound card" for SSTV and it works great. I think it cost around £5 (I'm in the UK) but I've seen them even cheaper. The audio quality is fine for SSTV and the sound card clock frequency is very close to nominal - hardly any "slant" in MMSSTV.
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W8JX
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Posts: 5492




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« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2013, 12:34:40 PM »

Unfortunately I got a netbook for portable work and didn't notice it only had one audio jack. It can be configured for audio in or audio out but not both. So I got a Griffin imic that gives me stereo line level or mic level via USB to the netbook. But it is so small - like a stack of four or five poker chips. When I look at my older external sound blaster units, or SignaLink, I wonder how that little "hockey puck" can provide any quality sound - but it seems to spec/review out okay. In the sound control panel I can select 2 channel 16 bit 48K sampling.

I know electronics can be really tiny. But it's one thing of all the devices were that small. The fact that they are much larger makes me wonder what was left out?

Thank you and 73,
Paul K7NHB

I have used a USB one for 3 years now with Digi and it work fine It is the size of a small short USB zip stick. Size does not matter.
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pmraiders

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« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2013, 12:51:42 PM »

I use the IMIC for an interface to my iPad for digital and bandscope functions while portable on my KX3.

If you want 'better' find a studio quality 192khz input soundcard. Expect to pay an arm and a leg for it.
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K1CJS
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« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2013, 01:22:57 PM »

...So I got a Griffin imic that gives me stereo line level or mic level via USB to the netbook. But it is so small - like a stack of four or five poker chips. When I look at my older external sound blaster units, or SignaLink, I wonder how that little "hockey puck" can provide any quality sound....

With respect, when I see a post that comments on how small electronics can be nowadays, I'm reminded about how 'small' the first pocket calculators were, and how small that the watch calculators were just a few years back.  The size difference was in the neighborhood of thirty to one.  To top it off, the small watch size calculator could do more than the first pocket size could!
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W8JX
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2013, 02:01:46 PM »

...So I got a Griffin imic that gives me stereo line level or mic level via USB to the netbook. But it is so small - like a stack of four or five poker chips. When I look at my older external sound blaster units, or SignaLink, I wonder how that little "hockey puck" can provide any quality sound....

With respect, when I see a post that comments on how small electronics can be nowadays, I'm reminded about how 'small' the first pocket calculators were, and how small that the watch calculators were just a few years back.  The size difference was in the neighborhood of thirty to one.  To top it off, the small watch size calculator could do more than the first pocket size could!

The packaging is mere window dressing. The electronics is so tiny these days that size does not limit performance much if any at all. I only limits I/O ports on it.
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N1DVJ
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« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2013, 05:52:32 AM »

Well, just think that the 8Gig thumb drive you have is pretty much the connector.  8Gig of memory, not just 8Gig of parts, probably 10 or more TIMES that, are in an area probably smaller then 1/2" a sq in.  Or less.

And look at a lot of the mice and trackballs now.  The USB connector has the wireless link in the connector.  It's not much bigger than the glob of epoxy on back of the shell.  When inserted into a USB jack they are so tiny they can be difficult to remove due to the lack of anything that sticks out. 

ICs and microcircuits are no longer 2 dimensional, with the 3rd dimension being nothing but the physical device.  Parts are now truly 3D, and down to the point that atomic granularity DOES matter in more than just a few cases.
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AG6WT
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« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2013, 06:26:08 AM »

Older sound cards where bigger for at least a couple of reasons: 1) They had more chips. As technology improved the chip manufacturers have been able to integrate more and more functions onto a single chip. 2) SB type cards had to be bigger just because they were designed to plug into a physically large bus, PCI or ISA.

Signalink's use a pretty small sound chip - about the size of your pinky nail - but when you add in the pots for level control and isolation transformers it gets a bit bigger.
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W8JX
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« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2013, 08:44:11 AM »

I have been using a USB thumb drive sound card with digi for a few years now and never had any issues with it.
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