Friday, 22 April 2011

pa0klt VFO Synth

Last year at the G-QRP Mini-Convention I purchased a VFO synth kit from fellow sailing enthusiast Jan, g0bbl at SDR-Kits. The system was designed by Ton, pa0klt and uses the same Si570 used in my beacon's DDS to make a very nice, flexible, fully-featured synthesizer. Today I decided it was about time to make up the kit...

Like all Jan's kits, the quality, presentation and instructions are exemplary and it didn't take more than a couple of hours to assemble.

Here's the completed board, showing the Si570 (lower right), the controlling ATMEGA88 and the conspicuous connectors which interface to the display, the switch array and the all-important rotary encoder...


There are a number of surface-mount capacitors in the kit which, together with the Si570, will be a challenge for anybody used only to leaded, through-hole components. However - as I've said before, if I can do it (with my imperfect vision, intention tremor and general cack-handedness) anybody can. Don't be put off - give it a go.

Here's the underside of the board, on which some of the SM capacitors are visible...


I knocked up a temporary set of switches, connected the rotary encoder and plugged it all together on the desk for a test flight - worked perfectly...



This is a great kit and an elegantly designed and executed system - thanks to both Jan and Ton.

Now all I need is to put it in an enclosure - a perfect Bank Holiday Weekend project!

...-.- de m0xpd

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