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Support for the Rafael Micro R820t tuner in Cocoa Radio

October 26th, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

R820t tuner on a rtl-sdr compatible dongle, from eBay seller CosyCave

Relating to the rtl-sdr work that has been done, the E4000 tuner was the standard barer for a long time.  However, Elonics has discontinued this part, and it’s becoming difficult to find.  The popularity, and scarcity, of this part has encouraged sellers to offer products claiming to be built with the E4000 and are not.  Luckily, someone discovered the code for using the R820t tuner in the Linux V4Lin drivers.  They ported this code into the rtl-sdr source maintained by osmocom.

I just finished porting their code into Cocoa Radio.  Now, it’s possible to use my software with both the E4000 and the R820t.  On startup, Cocoa Radio will automatically detect which tuner you’re using and perform the appropriate actions.

It did take a little while to finish this work, and there are several more tuners out there.  If you are desperate for support of a specific tuner, you can donate a device for the cause and I’ll try to support it.  By the way, Softshell uses the same code for tuning as Cocoa Radio, if you recompile softshell, it should include this new code.

All the relevant code and binaries are, as usual, available at github.  Make absolutely sure that you also update the softshell repository!



  1. Massimo C
    October 29th, 2012 at 05:04 | #1

    Awesome I just bought one of both :D
    I noticed that you’re still maintaining both Cocoa-Radio and Softshell won’t be more useful to concentrate your time and resources to only one of those projects (Cocoa-Radio I’d assume would be the chosen one)?

  2. October 29th, 2012 at 06:04 | #2

    Softshell is really just a wrapper on the userspace driver library, and Cocoa Radio uses the exact same driver code. In fact, if you ever download the source code, you need to get the code for Softshell and Cocoa Radio, otherwise i won’t compile. That way, when I add a feature to the driver it is immediately available in both projects. Also, softshell is really useful if you want to do some testing with GNU Radio.

  1. July 21st, 2013 at 14:32 | #1


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