[TenTec] How to Choose an SDR RX for the Pan-Adapter?

Jim Brown k9yc at audiosystemsgroup.com
Sun Dec 28 20:12:35 EST 2014

On Sat,12/27/2014 1:24 PM, Rick - DJ0IP / NJ0IP wrote:
> So I don't want to spend a lot of money on a faster computer which will
> later be used to run AALog once or twice per week, plus 2 or 3 contests per
> year.

Hi Rick,

For about ten years, I've been quite happy with off-lease T4x-series 
Thinkpads running XP Pro with all the updates. For most of that time, 
they did everything I needed, including some VERY CPU and RAM demanding 
scientific modeling software for sound systems. But the software world 
does not stand still, and every year or so software becomes that much 
more demanding of resources to do what we think it used to do. A couple 
of years ago, I maxxed out my T4x machines and one T61 with 2GB. Memory 
is cheap. Even then, one of the T4x machines was close to full CPU 
loading running Skimmer with only the bandwidth of the built-in sound 
card, and doing nothing else!

Attempting to give the shack the best of these, I made the T61 
(dual-core, 2 GHz, 2GB) my shack computer, and dedicated it to logging 
during contests. In some recent major contests (including CQWWCW), the 
T61 bogged down with the spotting load, and CW got a bit slow (and this 
is with WinKey). On advice from the N1MM guys and a few others, I 
brought the RAM up to 4GB (although XP Pro can address only about 3GB of 
that) and replaced the drive with an SSD (Solid State Drive). It's only 
been running a week, for RAC and Stew Perry, no cluster permitted for 
either contest, so no verdict on success or failure.

But computers are now a commodity, you can buy (or build) a lot for not 
a lot of money. Don't be shy about asking your younger computer geek 
friends for advice. I do. They tell me that Thinkpads are the best built 
of the consumer laptops, and that the Thinkpad badged stuff is better 
than the other Lenovo boxes.

73, Jim K9YC

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