Amateur Radio Station EA3WR in Barcelona

This is my modest shack, main radio for DX is TS-850 with INRAD roofing filter mod and IF xtal filters plus DSP100. Antennas are temporary dipoles as I moved recently to this QTH and we are planning to put up a beam.

We are located in a small village 29 Km North from downtown Barcelona and my QTH is in a small hill at 200m asl with a clear view to South and West directions with a downhill as you can see in the picture to Atlantic direction.

Microphone of preference is a Heil HC5 in a boom headset and a Silver Eagle with Kobitone xtal replacement element. Log software is Linux based CQRLOG, I use an old SB1000 computer interface for HF digital modes with FLDigi and WSJT, although I am not very active on those modes. Antenna setup is very simple at the moment, two dipoles for 10,15,20 plus WARC bands and a wire dipole fed with 450 ohm ladder line through a PALSTAR tuner. Sometimes I heat the room turning my AL811H on. My best receiver, by far, is the tiny box called RSP1A, that together with my Linux computer, turns into my SDR (Software Defined Radio) solution.

My favorite multiband antenna, the World famous McCoy dipole, it works perfect on all HF bands, and it is very simple to calculate, its length is that of the distance between your most convenient supports at your backyard, with the only requirement to feed it with ladder line and use a decent AT with built in 4:1 balun.

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McCoy Dipole

If you can not put a beam or other high performance antennas or if you need a convenience antenna for your vacation QTH or as a temporary antenna, an inverted V dipole is a cheap, easy to deploy and easy to align solution.

Evenmore, if what you need is a multiband setup, without the need to use loosy traps or dificult to tune devices, there is a very interesting “design” that Lew McCoy W1ICP described and explained very well at QST January 1962.

Of course you have to use a good Antena Tuner and not a coax cable but ladder line. I work all HF bands from 10 to 80m pretty well.

Diagrams by ARRL, picture by EA3WR, genius by the antenna guru Lew McCoy W1ICP (SK)

TS-850 Roofing Filter

One of the “must have” accessories for your TS-850 is certainly the DSP-100 Digital Processor, I was lucky to find one second hand years later it was discontinued.

But, what really makes a big difference are the set of optional crystal IF filters and the more recently added Roofing Filter.

Some years ago I heard about the filter manufacturer INRAD International Radio and I purchased some IF crystal filters for my TS-850. The reception perfomance improved dramaticaly. Those were filters easy to install, just plug ‘n play units.

Later, INRAD launched the roofing filter kit for TS-850, among other veteran equiment, that did not have the possibility to have roofing filters from the original manufacturer.

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Astatic D104 Sylver Eagle with Kobitone

My highly appreciated microphone Astatic Sylver Eagle suffered an accident and the original crystal element was seriously damaged, so that googling a little I found this little gem called KT-400023, part number 25LM022, from Mouser Electronics, with the brand Kobitone Audio Company

I found out that it was used as a direct replacement element for Astatic D104 microphones by just a few bucks. I ordered some of them, used one to replace my faulty unit and gave the rest as a gift to some friends. To our surprise, my friends and mine, this Kobitone element works even better than the original unit from Astatic, well let my clarify, when it comes to audio and microphones everyone has its own preferences, but I can assure you this one is an outstanding performer.

Just a quick note on specs and audio response and let’s compare with other well known mikes around. First diagram corresponds to my Kobitone element,

• Type: 35mm crystal element
• Sensitivity: -55dB @ 1KHz
• Response: 50-8KHz
• Impedance: 25KΩ
• Case material: aluminum / steel
• Weight: 4.5g

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We have a weekly country music radio show at that can also be downloaded from Ivoox (check link at the right column).

The show is normally recorded at my small home studio with the following equipment:

Behringer condenser microphone B1

UltraVoice Digital microphone preamp and voice processor VX2496 (with compressor, noise gate, de-esser, tube emulation and voice EQ.

Ultra-Q Pro parametric equalizer for voice processing.

Alesis 6FX mixer with digital effects

Computer running Mixxx for live performance and Audacity for audio editing and post production.

Radio Sitges Online is a 24/7 nonstop music radio format with an accurate selection of continous music plus specialized shows every night.

EA3WR-L Echolink VHF access point

This is our Echolink access point to the Catalan Conference serving all Valles County at 145.462,5FM @ CTSS 88.5

It uses a surplus (recycled) Motorola professional radio, 12 watts into a X200 dual band vertical antenna, and runs on a Raspberry Pi, with external USB sound card. Network is FTTH Internet at symetric 600mbps. Read more to check Link coverage…

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