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Reviews Categories | Ham Software - Other than logging | HDSDR - Previously WinradHD Help

Reviews Summary for HDSDR - Previously WinradHD
HDSDR - Previously WinradHD Reviews: 13 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $free
Description: A fork of the Winrad project with many improvements. This is
designed for use with I/Q based SDR receivers and has support
for the QS1R and other DDC hardware designs as well.
Product is in production.
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K7XRL Rating: 5/5 Apr 3, 2017 19:04 Send this review to a friend
Excellent software  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
This is really great software! The integration with OmniRig allowing full two way syncing between the radio and HDSDR makes this one of the most useful SDR software for amateur use.

I've got an RTL-SDR dongle connected to the IF in my HF radio and it gives me a full panadapter with "click to tune" capability where I can just click on a signal in the waterfall and it will tune the radio. The audio bandpass and notch filters are also excellent for notching out heterodynes and other noise/QRM.

The developers are very open to suggestions and are eager to help with bug fixes and new features.

The only thing holding it back is the lack of a formal user manual, but with the rapid rate of evolution of this software, a manual could be obsolete within a couple of revisions. The tooltips help quite a bit with this.

I gave it a 5 star rating because ultimately, it added functionality to my entry level radio that is usually reserved for much more expensive rigs.
K7LZR Rating: 5/5 Nov 20, 2016 14:13 Send this review to a friend
Very, very good and useful program  Time owned: more than 12 months
Many SDR programs are available today, all with good features and function. But HDSDR is a notch above the rest.

I use this program along with an SDRPlay RSP receiver, and find it to be a great combo.

First, HDSDR is very stable. Very rarely crashes. Has been in use by many for several years so is proven. HDSDR is also lightweight in terms of computer resource usage, and can work well with older, slower computers. I have successfully used this program with Windows XP on a 400mhz P3 computer with 512mb of RAM.

Important to any radio receiving system is its ability to recover intelligent signal(s) amidst noise, adjacent signals, etc. and this can be where HDSDR really shines when used with quality hardware.

Available noise filters are top-notch in HDSDR. Most other SDR programs which I've used - SDRUno, SDR#, PowerSDR, CubicSDR - have noise filters also but in my experience none of them work as well as those in this program. The NR (Noise Reduction) filter does a wonderful job of lowering overall background noise without distortion. The RF & IF noise blankers do an excellent job of removing impulse type noise.

These filters can be finely tuned via sliders, and I have been able adjust them such that they eliminate many noises around the desired signal, clearly leaving the signal which I want to hear.

Notch filters are, well, top-notch :). Easy to use also.

Signal filtering is truly wonderful. As with most SDR programs, you can "grab" the edges of the filter skirt within the bandpass window and infinitely adjust from VERY narrow to VERY wide and all points between. Skirts are tight, and the display is a true representation of the signal.

The spectrum display puts this program head and shoulders above the rest, mostly because of the ability to adjust the RBW (Receive Bandwidth). With this ability, HDSDR can be used as a true spectrum analyzer, with the ability to closely examine a given signal for such things as spectral purity, sideband suppression, carrier suppression, distortion, etc.

Also, the spectrum display in HDSDR can be used for accurate signal level testing if it is first calibrated with a source of known signal strength. I use HDSDR with an SDRPlay RSP receiver, and am able to set the system gain via the SDR panel, which will calibrate the signal level display. Once done, very accurate signal levels can then be measured.

So all in all, this is an outstanding program for many uses. Download, install, learn how to use. You won't be disappointed.
AB4D Rating: 4/5 Oct 7, 2015 12:10 Send this review to a friend
Good Panadapter  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I recently began using HDSDR and a RTL SDR dongle to implement a more useful Panadapter for my Yaesu FTDX-9000. The program works fine once everything is working, but getting it to work with the RTL requires a bit of experimentation with the program settings. In my case, setting it up required a frequency correction factor for the dongle, IF frequency, and for some of the individual operating modes on different band segments. However, I ran into a problem with the program in relation to the frequency offset.

As an example, I would get everything working correctly after adjusting the frequency offsets for the different bands/modes. Then for some unexplained reason, the frequency would suddenly shift out of alignment. Readjusting the settings again would correct the issue. However, later on the frequency control of the dongle would again shift out of alignment. Sometimes, I felt like a dog chasing it's own tail.

Another issue I had with HDSDR, was keeping the radio and the dongle synchronized. It would fall out of sync when using the mouse thumbwheel to change frequency. I ran into these issues during the initial stages of learning the program. I never determine what was causing them.

Ultimately, it was my intention from the beginning to use HDSDR just as a panadapter, and have my primary Control/Logging program HRD 6.2, perform frequency control for both the radio and the SDR. Once I assigned HRD 6.2 as the primary rig control program, all of the problems I had when using HDSDR by itself vanished. Now, using both HRD 6.2 and HDSDR together work great, and gives me both great rig control and a useful panadapter. Even when considering the issues I had. I have no regrets using HDSDR. The benefits certainly outweigh the initial issues.

I tried a few other programs but either didn't have the expertise to get them working or I didn't like the GUI. I rate HDSDR a 4. I would have given it a 5, if I didn't have the issues noted above, but it's still a very worthwhile program.

73, Jim AB4D
VE3TMT Rating: 5/5 Oct 5, 2015 19:14 Send this review to a friend
Follow up - 5 STARS  Time owned: more than 12 months
I just finished reading reviews on eHam for another brand name pan-adapter unit. In all fairness, it is a self contained, plug and play unit that requires no computer or software to run. It also cost $699 in kit form! Are you kidding me? I read a few of the reviews and the major complaints seem to be the small size of the display and the resolution. For $700 ??

Enter HDSDR....It's a free software program (yes free) that will put a larger than life pan-adapter display in your shack. Yes it does require a computer or 2nd monitor to run, and yes it requires an IF signal from the radio, and yes it does requires the purchase of a $20 DVB Tuner Dongle.

Most newer and a lot of older radios already have the IF signal available, it's just a matter of tapping it and getting the signal to the outside world. I have tapped the TS940, FT990 and now the FT950 with no problems whatsoever. The FT950 doesn't even require a modification, the jack is already there. Plug in your coax and feed the signal to the dongle, set up HDSDR and your all set.

Getting back to HDSDR...let's assume you have the IF signal feeding the dongle and HDSDR up and running. The pan-adapter has 5 or 6 different color settings, bandwidth and resolution are all user adjustable. It does require a healthy dual or quad core computer but I run it fine on my dual core 1.8GHz machine with 4G of RAM.

My computer is equipped with a Creative Labs Fatal1ty card capable of sampling at 192KHz. Depending on my settings I can see an entire band, but usually set it to 200-300 KHz, more than adequate. One 22" monitor is dedicated to running HDSDR and the other 22" usually runs MixW.

Setting up HDSDR involves inputting the IF frequency of your radio in the setup options. There are then individual "tweak" boxes for each mode, so you can align the software exactly with the radio in each mode. Once set, you normally do not need to adjust these again.

Another nice feature is how HDSDR handles the IF signal. It can be set to one of three different modes.

Mode 1: Fully interaction with the radio. If you rotate the VFO knob, HDSDR follows. If you click on a signal on the monitor screen, the radio follows.

Mode 2: Independent upon VFO change. You can point and click and listen to as many signals as you want and the radio's VFO will stay put. HDSDR can, in a sense be a second receiver (limited to the same band). As soon as you turn the VFO knob, HDSDR will realign itself to the radio's frequency.

Mode 3: Fully independent. HDSDR and the radio act as two independent receivers, limited to the same band. Want to rag chew with the guys on 3705 while waiting for some DX on 3800? Simple to do. Set the radio VFO on 3705 and HDSDR on 3800, you'll hear the DX come on frequency.

This setup is by no means meant to compete with the true SDR radios on the market. It's not meant to. But it does offer a very cheap way to get a nice pan-adapter in the shack, and the SDR receiver is an added bonus.

I've added a picture of the pan-adapter display to my QRZ page. If you have any questions, shoot me an email, I'll be glad to help.
VE3TMT Rating: 5/5 Jan 14, 2014 11:35 Send this review to a friend
The poor mans SDR!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've been using HDSDR for some time now with my Yaesu FT990. I tapped the 47 MHz IF in the 990 which feeds a $10 DVB-T tuner bought off eBay. With my Soundblaster Extigy sound card, sampling at 96KHz I can get up to 2 MHz of bandwidth on the monitor. With my satellite speakers and sub, the audio really comes alive when I dial in the low end. The guys on 75m SSB sound like FM stations!

My radio is interfaced to the computer thru Omni-Rig, so it is a simple case of clicking on the desired signal and the radio immediately follows. Another nice feature of HDSDR, is you can set it up as it's own receiver, independent of the radio. It's like having two separate receivers in the 990. Although it's limited to same band reception, it really helps working the DX on split. I listen to the DX on the 990, and the calling stations on HDSDR. It helps you find a not so congested spot to make your call.

All in all I think it is a great program. One issue I do have, is that every time you change a setting in the options setup, the setup window closes. A minor inconvenience, but it would be nice to not have to go back into the setup every time you make a change.
WV4I Rating: 5/5 Sep 8, 2013 03:21 Send this review to a friend
great with KX3  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I use HDSDR being fed with the IQ output of my KX3. It works great. The NR feature seems to work at least as well as the NR integral to the KX3, realizing rf/audio chain very different. Ditto for notch filter. The KX3 block diagram is instructive in this regard. CAT hookup/config straightforward. I offset LO from Tune freq by 5 kc to get away from center imbalanced IQ spike, and thus use XIT to compensate, as puts KX3 on LO freq vs desired xmt freq. Other ways to accomplish but how I do it.
N9MS Rating: 5/5 Mar 20, 2013 21:46 Send this review to a friend
Best software for Softrock for digital modes  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I finished my SoftRock Ensemble RxTx and downloaded HDSDR. WOW! I've been using it on JT-65 and RTTY mostly but it works well on SSB and CW (using FLDigi or other keyboard CW generator). The filtering is supurb and the notch filter is especially good. You can knock out any interferring carrier with the click of the mouse.

Setting up your soundcard is very easy. I use a virtual serial cable for CAT control with FLdigi and JT-65 and of course Virtual Audio Cables for moving audio around.

The only thing -- for me -- that is missing is split frequency for working DX pileups. For that I use Rocky because it has the split frequency capability. I can't wait to see what is in store in the next release!

If you want to use your CW paddle then HDSDR may not be for you as there is no paddle interface that I have found. I use Rocky with my paddle.

I really haven't had this much fun hamming since I finished my SoftRock and started using it with HDSDR. This is getting very close to having a KX3.
N7BUI Rating: 5/5 Jan 1, 2012 19:32 Send this review to a friend
Very impressed  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've been using Winrad for years and have watch the improvements being made after Albert released the code to public domain. This version is the absolute best version to date. It interfaces well to my SDR-IQ and my Perseus. The implementation of Omni-Rig works gives full transmit-receive capability with my TS-2000 with up to a 1.6mhz panadapter. The receiver mutes properly and in many ways is better than PwrSDR with my Flex-3000. I really enjoy the new features such as being able to move the panadapter into the top window and the ease of expanding the size with simple sliders. Nice job Mario!

On a side note I haven't experienced any of the motorboating issues that the previous reviewer had. ECSS tracks carrier just fine and the audio is excellent using either my SDR-IQ or Perseus.
TERRYW Rating: 0/5 Dec 4, 2011 00:22 Send this review to a friend
Flawed  Time owned: more than 12 months
This attempt at an upgrade of SDRadio fixes the low audio output sampling rate problem of Winrad, but adds constant motor-boating, glitching and audio distortions when using ECSS. The ECSS on SDRadio is perfect, so stick with the original.
KD7RDZI2 Rating: 5/5 Jun 25, 2011 14:40 Send this review to a friend
maybe better than PowerSDR  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Seems that HDSDR runs with much less CPU compared to WInrad on my 9 years old desktop. More, after calibration, the image rejection appears better than PowerSDR 2.0 using just the line-in of inexpensive soundcard. Try to believe!
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