Monday, April 11, 2016

SWR Power meter update UPDATED 5/7/16

Because of a family emergency I had to make a two week trip to the winter wonderland I escaped from about 30 years ago.  I was not able to do much on the SWR Power meter I am working on that the local QRP would like to kit.  I was able to get back in time to get a board stuffed in an Altoids tin and take it to the monthly club meeting.  
The club member that has been testing my early prototypes seems to be happy with the results he was getting with the latest version that incorporated a diode compensated amplifier to improve linearity and low signal response.  The power readings he was getting were linear from less than .5 watt to over 50 watt, and were good up to 6 meters.
I will stay with this hardware and just have to do a little clean up on the software and couple things I want to add.  Just in the process of ordering parts for a pilot run of 10 units for some club members to assemble and test on their own.  If that works out the club will probably start selling the kit along with the kit they presently have.

Including a picture of a prototype board mounted in an Altoids tin this time.  For the Altoids tin I am using edge mount SMA connectors. They are nice and small and easy to install.  There are adapters from SMA to BNC and most other types of connectors available fairly inexpensively through the auction sites.

Will let everyone know how the pilot run turns out.  
For now I am spending most of my time working on something for the home-brew contest at FDIM.

Just a quick update on the pilot run of boards. The boards I got from China look really nice. Finally have all the parts in and built one to test.  Found that the display boards I received use a different driver chip.  I found the appropriate driver that was compatible with the Adafruit libraries I use, but runs at a slightly different resolution.  So I have been rewriting some of the display functions to reflect the changes.  Shouldn't take too long, and also doing some  clean up of the code at the same time.