|Product Performed to Expectations:||10|
|Specifications were sufficient to design with:||10|
|Demo Software was of good quality:||9|
|Product was easy to use:||10|
|Support materials were available:||10|
|The price to performance ratio was good:||10|
|TotalScore:||59 / 60|
First of all I would like to thank Element 14 and Cypress for selecting me for this roadtest.
As you can see above my total score for this product is almost 60, I'm really impressed by this powerful and versatile kit . The only reason that I put a 9 for the Demo software - which is not a demo, but a fully functional complete and powerful IDE - is that it only runs in windows. I would rather like to have a Mac version. But anyway, using Windows 7 in a virtual Box environment did the job flawlessly.
PSoC is an ideal platform to built a software defined radio (SDR), without relying on a PC for the SDR processing! Some years ago Simple circuits build one using the PSoC 3 (http://www.simplecircuits.com/SimpleRadios.html). Currently their hardware is'n available anymore. For my Roadtest application I would use the new PSoC 5 to built a SDR design similar to simplecircuits mentioned above.
But before diving into this I started as usual with the blinking led demo after arrival of the kit.
So now its time for some more serious work, an software designed radio (SDR) receiver for one of the ham bands.
I soldered header strips to the J1 and J2 headers, and put the kit into a small breadboard. This makes experimenting a lot easier.
When writing my application I already searched the internet for some information on this subject.
There are some groups/people experimenting with PSoC and SDR, but not much code is publicly available.
Here are some links:
You see most of the blocks from the block diagram back in the PSoC topdesign, except for the demultiplexer, adder and delay line.
These functions are implemented in software on the PSoC. An automatic gain control is also implemented in software. When it clips, the blue led will flash. As I said already the majority of the design is copied from simplecircuits.
The PSoC kit is powered from the softrocks LM78L05 voltage regulator, which seems to be enough. I measured around 30mA power consumption. For audio output I used a small battery powered speaker.
Here is a picture of part of the so frock schematics with the connections to the PSoC kit:
By adapting the simple circuits design to the PSoC 5 kit I had this software defined radio quite fast up and running. For the future I have a lot of improvements and additions in mind. First of all I will check whether adding an extra ADC and removing the multiplexer will improve the quality. The PSoC 3 used by simplecircuits does not allow two ADCs, but the PSoC 5 does.
The Si570 control currently done with an mbed will also be implemented in the PSoC, together with the encoders and display.
I will try to add more modes, and finally try to make a transmitter, using the softrock rxtx 6.2. All parts are already available, the only thing I’m lacking is time.