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Author Topic: Advice needed please.  (Read 6496 times)

Posts: 22

« on: August 08, 2006, 09:43:48 AM »

I am thinking heavily of getting a SDR1000.
I am a CW op (99.9%).
I have a choice of two laptops.
Which would perform better?

1) Dell Intel Pentium M at 1.6 Ghz w/504 MB ram and without a parallel port ... thus needing the USB to parallel adaptor.
2) Dell Celeron M at 1.4 Ghz w/ 1 Gig of ram and with a parallel port.

Will either of these be satifactory for CW using the Firebox audio unit.

Tnx for you input.

Posts: 138

« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2006, 06:04:22 PM »

Once you are above 512 meg of memory, you may not notice as much of an improvement in day to day operations between the two radios cpu wise.

In general I prefer hardware adapters on the pc over USB adapters, it is less likely that they will get re-addressed in the middle of their use because of a flaky usb cable, etc. However if you have good cables and hubs, that should not be a problem either.

From a 'portable' perspective, I like the on the laptop adapters as well. Again for a fixed station this is not likely to be an issue, but if you intend to go mobile or remote for some reason, you may find it really nice not to have to carry extra adapters and so on. You will have enough of a cable snarl to untangle every time as it is without adding usb cables to the mess.

If you intend the laptop to be used at home and on the road, but the radio equipment is not going with you, you may want to look into using a docking station to attach all the equipment to the laptop, possibly including a larger lcd panel or monitor. Then when you are going to take the laptop you simply undock, whatever that means to the system you have on it. This also prevents someone from incidentally using your equipment without your knowledge.

For some people another possibility would be to use a low profile desktop system without a monitor (after initial setup) then remote desktop software from a laptop to control the attached equipment. If you have a broadband connection and can provide your own secure connection to the desktop remotely (ssh tunnels, or some sort of VPN setup) you can operate your station pretty much wherever you are that you can get an internet connection.

Ok, that's probably more than you were interested in dealing with. Personally I would go with the included ports. Even if that meant a slightly slower CPU. But that's just me.


-Rusty - kc0vcu

Posts: 35


« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2006, 08:47:16 PM »

As far as computer performance, the Pentium M will definitely outperform the Celeron M.

512M RAM (8M shared with video) is probably adequate but an additional 512M RAM can probably be installed by you for $50 (check if there is an open slot). The processor is not practical/cost effective to upgrade.

Either computer would probably be fine for running the radio software.

I do however concur that having a "real" parallel port might be an advantage for connecting the radio without any hassles.
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