Slingbox, the best Gadget ever

Slingbox ClassicThat may seem to be a big statement, and I have only had the Slingbox a week or two and wouldn’t want to get rid of it now.

So what is the Slingbox?? It’s a device that can stream your TV over local network and the internet, even on a PDA or phone (mobile software costs £20 currently).

Cable or Satellite boxes?? No problem.
DVD, Video, Hardisk Players/Recorders?? No problem.
Digital TV?? No problem. (not on Solo)
High Definition TV?? No Problem. (not on Classic)

Why did I choose the Slingbox?? I purchased a Video Sender prior to this and as operated on 2.4GHz interence was caused by my Wifi. Also couldn’t change channels as VirginMedia (ex-Telewest) remote uses IRDA signals.

It soon went back to the shop I purchased it from and eBayed a Buy-It-Now Slingbox Classic for £75.00. Bargain.

The photo is of my Slingbox in situ with a DVD temporarily above it to show it’s size.

I currently have a Cable Box and DVD player connected (although one cable for sound has to be manually changed if I switch via the software), and a Digital TV freeview antenna.

If you have local network at home, Cat5 or Wifi, I would advise to look at the Slingbox as a seriously cool Gadget. Visit the Slingmedia home page Awarded the Kenwood Trophy

G3PSM, M0TZO, M3PHPIt is 21:00 & I am starting to write this heading back to London on the train from Bristol.

The RSGB AGM is over and Peter M3PHP & myself have finally collected our Kenwood Trophy for “making significant contributions to Training and Development in Amateur Radio within the United Kingdom” to from the RSGB board.

The rest of the day was also interesting at the AGM, although the open forum session in the afternoon proved very interesting to hear member’s views and getting answers from the board.

To finish off the evening we went for dinner with Iain M0PCB, Chloe (M0GEJ), Paul (M3JFM) and Terry (G0LUQ).

Next Step to Learning Morse

I attended the Kempton Radio Rally on 6th April and made a few purchases including the book pictured.

The hope is that I can finally get my head around to learning “the code”.

Few ideas I have from the book already so maybe change the setup of the software I am using to the order suggested in the book.

Made a few other purchases including:-

  • 2x Patch leads
  • Yaesu power lead (for FT-897 charger)
  • Boom microphone / earphone for FT-60
  • 8Gb USB memory stick
  • Self-amalgamating tape
  • 2x Banana Plugs (1x red, 1x black)
  • 2x PL259s for RG58
  • Even more out of thin air (for friend)

CQ WPX – If it could have gone wrong, it did

What a disaster.

Everything that could have gone wrong, did for me. I could go into detail, but will list instead.

  • Uncle passed away
    • No operation from France
  • Finish Radio Shack
  • Radio/Antenna
    • Only assembled days before (thanks James M0BOV)
    • To finish, had tools missing (mainly had Metric, and needed 2x ¼” sockets)
      • Also couldn’t find Self-amalgamating tape
    • Weather & Night time prevented this being looked at until gone 5am, 5hrs into contest
    • Tried with Antenna horizontal, but stations couldn’t hear me
  • PC
    • Crashed, more than once
      • Installed 2nd Soundcard to handle the Digital Voice Keying. Computer wouldn’t load
      • Removed and PC wouldn’t start.
        • Finally found that Video card wasn’t seated properly
    • LCD Screen caused interference on 40m
      • No Filter I could add
        • Quickly brought15″ CRT down
          • Still not able to get signal out

Anyway, not sure how I should finish this article, been looking at for few days. Just the main this is I have definately learnt lessons from this.

So, Plans do not always go to plan, & even if you change you plans everything make seem to be going OK, until the crunch time. Planning is underway for testing radio BEFORE next contest, and to make sure where possible have backup solutions.