Using SignaLink as a sound card for SDR?

Discussion in 'Software Defined Radio (SDR)' started by KK4NSF, Jul 29, 2020.

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  1. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    Here's the deal: I've got a very nice computer that I'd like to use with my SDRplay, but it does not have a sound card, or sound capability on the motherboard. Since my SignaLink shows up as a sound card on that machine, I'm wondering if I can use that as an output for my SDRplay? It's a WIN7 machine, by the way.

    I guess I could buy a PCIe sound card and just plug it in.... but what would be the fun in that? :D
  2. N1FM

    N1FM Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

  3. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    thanks. While helpful, the comments on that thread were not conclusive since the commenters appeared to misunderstand that the OP was talking about using it as a sound card only. I think I'm just going to have to hook it up and see if it works.
  4. K3RLD

    K3RLD Ham Member QRZ Page

    What would it output to? You'd likely have to build a custom cable, and then what is the output of the SignaLink (line out, or amplified?). You may need to build or buy a phono amp of some kind. USB soundcards are like $12 on Amazon, but again - no fun in that. If you get it to work, please update us this could be of value to SBC users (like raspberry pies).
  5. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    there is a speaker port on the SignaLink, and a MON port as well. Unfortunately, it does not seem to work..... so study continues.
  6. KB0MNM

    KB0MNM Ham Member QRZ Page

    See post #2- Here is the second response in that link:
    The Tigertronics USB interface is ideal for plug and play interfacing between a specific ham rig and your PC. But you are then tied to the signal chain of your ham rig. The (up to 8MHz) spectrum signalling from the SDRplay RSP relies on the specially designed USB interface feeding the PC directly. Thus the Tigertronics cannot really be inserted to help. Your problem may be more to do with noise getting into the USB cable going the RSP. Make sure you have ferrite beads at each end of the USB cable and if that still doesn't help, contact

    Last edited by jon on Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am, edited 0 times in total.
    Now I spell my first name the same way, (Jon)- yet I think that Jon ( above) has given you the answer that you seek. If the SignaLink monitor port really is defective, then you might be able to find someone in your area to examine it and confirm/repair the problem. If not, someone might loan you a known good one- including the 'Tigertronics' folks. Many larger manufacturers will allow you to purchase a second item with a known possibility of return- for diagnostic use. There is often a small 'return' change involved, to pay for examination of returned goods. Yet before wasting their time, be sure that you contact the SDRplay help desk- and look for their tech with experience- not everyone will be able to understand what you are attempting. Your written description of the problem above is pretty good. Your understanding of the PC 'signal chain'- not so much.
  7. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    OK.... update:
    I spent some time studying the audio path from the SDRplay, through the SignaLink. You can get an audio signal out of the MON port.... just not a good one. If I wanted to tinker more with the jumper settings, I might be able to get a good audio out of it. But since it's primary use is with the Kenwood, that would be counterproductive. So I put the Kenwood Jumper Card back into it.

    So my solution to the problem is simple: use a Sound Card. :D I found a PCIe Soundblaster card in my used parts bin, plugged it in, and viola! Problem solved.

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