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Re: [RFI] Recommended PC Components for Low EMI/RFI?

To: rfi@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [RFI] Recommended PC Components for Low EMI/RFI?
From: "Rob Atkinson, K5UJ" <k5uj@hotmail.com>
Date: Mon, 29 Dec 2003 18:48:29 +0000
List-post: <mailto:rfi@contesting.com>

My experience has been the tough thing is keeping rf out of the pc's audio speaker system. for a lot of hams it may not matter if they don't have sound from the pc but if you want to run your rig and Echolink at the same time it is an issue. A lot of hams use Echolink as a sort of free "order wire" (signal corps term) to coordinate on-air stuff...EME, mw shots, testing new setups on HF etc.

For the other RFI avoidance, I'd consider simply positioning the pc away from the RF gear and running long mouse, keyboard and monitor cables. At or near each end you can put a bunch of ferrite chokes on them and use a LCD monitor too by the way. Well, I guess on the mouse and keyboard wires you only need to have chokes near the pc. The hash field around a pc varies but usually drops off around 4 feet away so at that point it's not overwhelming things you want to protect. Note: I have not done this--just an idea to consider--I do not know if it will work or not, but it's probably nice to get the pc away anyway, since that reduces operating position clutter. comments on whether or not this is bad advice welcome but please post to the list; not me. Tnx.

Rob Atkinson

From: Phil Duff <na4m@arrl.net>
To: rfi@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [RFI] Recommended PC Components for Low EMI/RFI?
Date: Sun, 28 Dec 2003 05:50:23 +0000

At 04:10 12/28/2003, Colburn wrote:
I am about to assemble a new PC.  I would like to select
components that have better than average resistance to
external RF and minimal output of same.

I'd like to start with the motherboard.  While I am fond
of the features of the EPoX 8KRA2+ (I am told that it is
just now out of production and replaced by the 8KRAI so
dealers still have them). I cannot find any data re.
EMI/RFI specs. (Indeed there is little if any comparative
data between mobos anywhere.)

Then I need to select a case and power supply:  ATX,
400 watts or better, front panel USB access ... but
aluminum or steel?  I don't care about looks, certainly
not about clear side panels or colorful lights ... just
stability and low EMI/RFI.

I went thru this same exercise about 2 years ago.

My approach was to select the case and power-supply first as it's the computers first line of "defense" in EMI/RFI suppression.

I chose an Antec steel mid-tower case and power-supply. The Antec cases are well designed and the power-supplies seem quiet.

I've had two different mobo's in this Antec case both running an AMD Athlon Thunderbird cpu at 1.2ghz - the first was a ASUS mobo with which I was disappointed when one of it's EIDE channels died and corrupted a harddisk after a few months. I replaced the ASUS with a FIC mobo and have been very pleased.

As a point of reference - this 1.2ghz system has far and away much less EMI than my old generic case and p.s. that ran a Cyrix P166+ cpu. I have no noticeable EMI or digital noise in my receivers that I can blame on the computer. And have never had the system crash due to RF getting into the system at power levels up to 1.5kw. The computer is in the radio shack BTW.

73 Phil NA4M

_. ._ ...._ __ _. ._ ...._ __ _. ._ ...._ __ _. ._ ...._ __ Phil Duff NA4M Ann Duff Georgetown, Texas

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