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Joerg Klingenfuss updated 5 March 2014

Klingenfuss Radio Monitoring
A radio monitoring service "in a neighbouring country" - they say so in Malaysia whenever they
mean Indonesia, and everybody knows it - recently asked us to test the Software Defined
Receiver Perseus manufactured by Microtelecom from Italy.
The set did run "along" beside the continuous reception and decoding of utility radio stations with
professional equipment.
The receiver, i.e. the hardware, is very good. The software is cos-cos. Overall: good!
There is a 1,600 kHz wide FFT/sonagram window, and a smaller window for the filters.
The FFT/sonagram window allows a good overall view on "neighbouring signals" and has been
used precisely for that: to check what else is around, and tune interesting signals afterwards on a
professional receiver (it takes way too long to do that on the Perseus) and continue the standard
procedure with WAVECOM.
Playing around patiently in the filter window gives pretty nice results. For once, a strong signal
just outside of the filter passband does not influence the sensitivity of the receiver. Well done.
The Graphical User Interface is easy to operate if you have compiled - with great difficulty! -,
wrote down and studied intensively the numerous - and in some cases unusual - abbreviations and
functions (see Appendix) that show up on all those controls, and are far from being completely
described in all those instruction manuals. Fa da ridere. Inoltre, as with any reasonable handbook
from the Cheap Chinese Hinterland, we expect a nice graphic overview of the complete GUI with
clear definitions of all controls, i.e. exactly that what we used to call explosive drawing.
Comunque ... non c'!
Poi, c' il caso del software. And here is the big problem. There are no scanning functions at all,
that come already with all those cheap little radios of today, and the direct frequency input - i.e.
the most important and most frequent (sic) setting at all! - is a bad joke from the ergonomic Stone
Age, and in a "new" software version is even worse than before. Believe it or not, but you have to
1 double-click on the frequency
2 click again in the input window
3 enter the frequency on the keyboard, or click on numeric keys
4 click MHz or kHz
5 close the frequency window.
Mai visto una roba pazza del genere. Fa davvero scuotere la testa, 'starobal d'oltroalpe.
Roba da matt'!
and the receiver is tuned to the frequency 12345, without any more fuss, and that was that.
How else? Porco cane!
What's more, this product is yet another proof that the poor radio amateurs don't have the faintest
idea of professional utility radio stations. There is no 0.5 kHz or 3 kHz, let alone free definable,
channel spacing, but only 5 and 9 kHz for the rapidly dying out "BCLs". Equally useless is the
limit on 499 Hz in the database window. What we need is a reasonable value that can be freely
set by the user, per esempio 3 or 10 kHz.
Starobal realizzata, the set would be quite suitable for the reception of utility radio stations ...

Hundreds of fascinating screenshots of Perseus - and superb WAVECOM Digital Data Decoders
such as W-CODE W61PC W51PC - can be found on our website www.klingenfuss.org .
More than 9,400 (nine thousand four hundred!) screenshots are published on our brandnew
Another note on the hardware. Ragazzi, the attached power supply by Friwo or the like at a cost
of four Mickey Mouse Dollars (see Internet) or the like is a real disaster, vuol dire a perfect
sawtooth generator. We just can't understand that such bad equipment is thrown into the cardbox
of such a sensitive shortwave receiver. See also several bloody vicious comments on the Internet,
per example by the long-term receiver test guru of Passport on http://n9ewo.angelfire.com/
perseus.html .
PS "See what you hear " might be an alleged and incredible sensation for "DXers", for the
decoding of digital utility radio stations however it has been our standard procedure for decades
and, ragazzi, really is not worth mentioning. More than 30 years ago - our invention! - we used
high-tuned fast-running mechanical fax machines for the perfect analysis of all types of unknown
data transmissions. The last time we explained this technique in the RADIOTELETYPE CODE
edition 1987 page 60. Only after
that, WAVECOM - who else - got the idea to implement this as "Bit Correlation Analysis" ...

Yet another note on the GUI itself: several parameters are nearly unreadable; that is drastically
inconsiderate against the user. Colour selection and typeface size are simply disastrous. Passport
2009 says on page 147 "dark with smallish typeface, several GUI icons are hardly legible", and
that goes particularly for the most important parameter at all, i.e. the frequency, what else, porco
cane! How about readable and reasonable icons and colours and contrasts?! A "new" software
version of December 2009 provided, again, totally useless colour pallette gimmicks and the like
in the sonagram, while leaving the dreadful GUI unchanged at the same time!

Many users think and say the same and contacted us nel frattempo. For example, DG2HAW saw
the unique Perseus utility station reception screenshots on our webpage and asked on 18 Novem-
ber 2009: "I've seen the modified software interface of the Perseus on your website. It looks
really great. I would like to ask if I can realize the same modification on my Perseus?? If so, can
you give me some advice?" Hans-Jrgen Karius wrote on 3 December 2009: "Where can I get
the beautiful white GUI for the Perseus, that you use to illustrate the Perseus database?
It is decidedly clearly arranged."
Answer: "That WOULD be nice, but it is not available. Already one year ago we proposed
several suggestions for improvement to that Mister Nico - io parlo perfettamente Valsesiano
perch sono ... - but he did not even answer our e-mails and letters. Only if even more customers
complain about the unergonomic colours and the idiotic frequency control, there could finally
happen something. Let's go!"
Appendix: Functions
The amateurish "instruction manuals" of both the manufacturer and the German distri-
butor SSB are tutte e due incomplete and, consequently, unprofessional! Larry van Horn
N5FPW gets the same impression in Monitoring Times September 2009: "The instruction manual
itself isnt among the best. A lot of the monitoring capability of this SDR isnt discussed adequa-
tely or at all." Says John Collins on 24 February 2010: "The documentation might as well not be
included. I discovered more from the quick-tips in your review than I can find anywhere in the
original documentation." Says Gene Fender KE5JPP on www.eham.net : "There are some buttons
that do not work with no explanation in the manual. The manufacturer Microtelecom has a histo-
ry of treating customers like enemies on the Perseus Yahoo support group when you make any
criticisms of the Perseus." Says Chris Black N1CP on 29 November 2010: "My repeated commu-
nications concerning bugs have gone unanswered. I am not qualified nor do I want to become
qualified to have to overlay some nimrad software with the product I purchased in order to have it
perform as originally advertised." Ecco, ragazzi: il discorso questo. Te cap?! Che vergogna!
On the two graphics on page 52, an expert can easily see the disastrous sawtooth generator called
cheap power supply. Che vergogna that not even the dealer SSB uses something professional ...
Click on the Perseus icon upper left, makes all software parameters accessible via Settings. Set
Reverse Mouse Wheel to 1, RTTY Tone Pitch to 1700 Hz instead of 1360 Hz. This gives a
correct display of digital data station's frequencies in our frequency list, using the RTTY mode
with the standard decoding offset of 1700 Hz.
CF Step defines the step in the main window with arrows .
In the main window, running the FFT spectrum makes arrows set the amplitude in the
same way like Ref Lev and Scale on the left side. This is not possible with the sonagram.
What all those amateurs out there call a "waterfall" is in reality a perfect sonagram.
See the precise definition in the ITU Spectrum Monitoring Handbook!
AVG Main controls the averaging in the main window. AVG Sec does the same in the filter
Dither should be used only for measurements, in any case don't use it with very low noise levels.
Preamp is a preamplifier, gives just 2-3 dB and makes sense only above 20 MHz.
For DRM AGC on Slow; bandwidth to 25 kHz, close filter window to around 11-12 kHz.
Center activated, clicking on a signal in the main window tunes this frequency with the
parameters used in the filter window, and the frequency range in the main window sets to the new
frequency in the center. Center disactivated, clicking on a signal in the main window does the
same without setting the frequency range to the new center. The description of that feature in the
instruction manual is totally useless.
ZOOM in the filter window zooms the main window, set values with the arrows of Span (kHz).
Using the notch filter, the mouse wheel adjusts the filter width.
NB Lev is noise blanker inversed: high threshold below, low threshold on the top ...
NBW is Noise Blanker Wide, NBN is Narrow.
SpkRej is Spike Rejection against pulse interference, use only with CW and SSB, avoid with
digital data.
NR is Noise Reduction, do not use with digital data.
For digital data set AGC always to Fast, only for DRM and complex STANAG aggregates set to
Med or Slow.
ADC Clip is Analog Digital Converter Clip control, ATT adds 10 20 30 dB.
For Squelch tuning, click below S 9. Right mouse key switches off.
For Mute tuning, click above S 9. Right mouse key switches off.
Click on WFall in the sonagram mode changes the running direction su e gi.
Activate Labels, gives frequency and signal strength parameters in the main window. Activate
PeakSrc, tunes to the nearest signal peak.
BANK in the MEM window makes up to 6 frequency databases with up to 100 entries each.
ALL in the MEM window shows all entries of a database (not of all databases!) independently
from the time. "Active" stations are displayed in yellow. Strangely enough, scrolling the frequen-
cy list runs vice versa, i.e. the first entry for each frequency is on the bottom and the last one on
the top. It makes more sense to use our SUPER FREQUENCY LIST ON CD that has been pre-
sorted perfectly ergonomic - for decades!
The USER demodulator (on the right side of DRM) can be used for VAC and W-CODE.
VAC Control Panel, Cable Parameters to SR 62500 ... 192500.

VAC Control Panel, Cable Parameters for SIGMIRA have not been changed. SIGMIRA does
a good job decoding STANAG 4285, however it is a quite stubborn program, like principally all
those "solutions" from and for the amateur market, and per questo unacceptable for professional
users. Install and de-install several times to get it running.

VAC Control Panel, Cable Parameters for DRM to SR 62500 ... 62500. Different settings seem
to work as well, check on the Internet.
This setting, however, is unstable and results in phase jumps with weatherfax reception. Cable
Parameters for Wetterfax have to be set to 22050 - 192000, see the WAVECOM website.
We also use 22050 - 96000. If this constellation does not help - since PERSEUS and W-CODE
excessively use slow PC's computing power! -, simply try smaller Sampling Rates on the Perseus.

For the modification of the settings for e.g. SIGMIRA and DRM, or weatherfax, exit not only
W-CODE and Perseus, but also the WAVECOM Server!

Klingenfuss Radio Monitoring has been testing and optimizing the brandnew
PLATH go2monitor and go2signals digital data decoders since their introduction
only in 2013. These easily connect to SDRs such as the PERSEUS and display up
to 1,600 kHz bandwidth in their sonagram and/or FFT. The sophisticated software
runs up to 64 (!) classification / recognition / decoding / recording channels over
that wide frequency range by simply clicking on a selected signal!

8454.8 kHz STANAG 4285 + 8434.0 kHz CW 4250.5 kHz PACTOR-2 11384.0 kHz ACARS

We again offer an updated and ready-to-use specially formatted individual frequency list
USERLIST.TXT. Our latest 2014 data comprises more than 13'500 entries and includes
thousands of fascinating digital data stations on HF. This is the only database that includ-
es both broadcast and utility radio stations worldwide. See the contents in the MEM field
of the sample screenshots below and overleaf!
For even more superb screenshots click "Perseus Database" on our website. An 8-pages
critical field test of the MICROTELECOM Perseus SDR, referring particularly to the
reception of digital utility radio stations, can be found on our website as well.

The frequency 8424 kHz gives you 5 entries. The waterfall display here is 100 kHz wide and shows in
full detail, from left to right:
ellipse: the single letters of the Morse code identification IAR and the SITOR call burst on 8418 kHz
ellipse: the single letters of the Morse code identification SVO and the SITOR call burst on 8424 kHz
ellipse: SITOR call burst of station TAH on 8431 kHz
weak, not marked: SITOR call burst of station UAT on 8431.5 kHz
ellipse: the single letters of the Morse code identification TAH (clearly not in parallel to 8431 kHz!)
and the SITOR call burst on 8434 kHz
circle: teleprinter emission of station PBB on 8439 kHz
circle: PSK aggregate signal of station FUG on 8454.8 kHz
circle: PSK aggregate signal of station RETJ on 8465 kHz