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Raspberry Pi Ham: A Waterproof SDR for Enthusiasts and Noobs

Raspberry Pi
(Image credit: Splash07s)

The Raspberry Pi community is built upon a fellowship of makers who are always itching to find more ways to communicate and interact using their favorite SBC. One maker, known on Reddit as Splash07s, decided it was time to listen for a change and built a custom software-defined radio (SDR) rig called Raspberry Ham.

SDRs are popular among amateur radio operators—this is where the term Ham radio comes from. Users can listen to a wide range of frequencies ranging from air traffic control to local scanners. If the transmission is unencrypted and open to the public, you can listen in. This project uses a Raspberry Pi as the base for the radio.

Splash07s recently uploaded a complete, detailed parts list which you can view on Reddit. The major components used were a Raspberry Pi 3 B+, a Pelican 1200 case, and an RTL-SDR dongle.

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Raspberry Pi

(Image credit: Splash07s)
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Raspberry Pi

(Image credit: Splash07s)
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Raspberry Pi

(Image credit: Splash07s)

The Pelican case is entirely waterproof and features external ports with waterproof casings. Externally, you can take advantage of HDMI, an Ethernet port, multiple USB inputs, and even a 3.5mm jack. The image used for the SDR functionality comes from a developer named Luigi Cruz. You can find his SDR image for the Raspberry Pi on GitHub.

The best Raspberry Pi projects are ones with a clean finish, and this one has a really cool, custom-made logo featuring our favorite raspberry with a piggy twist. Check out the Raspberry Ham project thread for a complete breakdown of this awesome build.