Using Librtlsdr Over TCP

[Texane] built a low-cost software defined radio rig which could be remotely controlled. This allows the hardware to be placed outside for better reception, while being controlled from any PC that can connect over TCP. To do this, he created a fork of librtlsdr, the library used to turn cheap TV tuners into software defined radios.

The official release of rtl-sdr includes the rtl_tcp utility, which is meant for this purpose. Unfortunately, not all of the SDR tools for Linux support this. By modifying the library itself, remote devices interact with software in the same way as local devices. This means that any software that supports librtlsdr should work.

The outdoor rig contains a BeagleBone Black and the SDR hardware, sealed up in a weather-resistant box. This connects to [Texane]’s home network over ethernet, and allows SDR utilities to be run elsewhere.

This feature is quite experimental, but the source for the fork is provided for those who want to build the code and try it out.

10 thoughts on “Using Librtlsdr Over TCP

  1. What a coincidence…Just yesterday I was thinking about trying something similar using a Raspberry Pi A+ model.
    I considered putting the remote electronics inside a weathertight box mounted inside the skirt of a homemade Discone
    antenna in addition to an SDR I thought adding a cheap Baofeng 2mtr/440 handie was a good idea.

  2. Proofing this out with a Pi B+ now for remote listening to the Radio station that I am responsible for monitoring. Looking to do multiple units so we can have diverse receive points and maybe do RF analysis for field strength.

    Having issues with it having stuttering audio on the remote side. All other features are okay. I’ll look at his project and see if there’s anything I can improve.

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