The Minima is an all-band RF transceiver for below $ 100
If you’ve ever browsed an amateur radio magazine you might be forgiven for the impression that it is all a pursuit for the rich. Wall-to-wall advertisements for very large and shiny high priced transceivers abound, and there seems to be a pile of them on every photo of a cabin.
Of course, this is only part of the story. Ham radio is and always has been an amazingly diverse interest, and beyond the world of glitzy advertising, you will find many much more interesting devices. Many radio amateurs still design and build their own equipment, and the world of homebrew radio forever generates new ideas.
We noticed one such project recently, the Minima, an all-band RF SSB transceiver. It’s an interesting device for several reasons, it uses readily available components, it’s an impressively simple design, and it should cost less than $ 100 to build. That might sound a bit far-fetched if it’s not off the bench by [Ashhar Farhan, VU2ESE], whose similarly minimalistic BITX single-band SSB transceiver set a new standard for barrier-free SSB construction a few years ago.
The circuit shows some similarities with the tried and tested BITX, in which bidirectional amplifier modules are used. The mixers are now FETs rather than diodes, the intermediate frequency has moved from 9 MHz to 20 MHz, and the local oscillator is now an Arduino controlled clock generator. The whole thing is designed to be built dead-bug style if necessary, and two prototypes have been built. We would expect this design to follow a similar evolution to the BITX, with the worldwide amateur radio community contributing performance changes, and no doubt some kit suppliers making circuit boards and kits. We think this can only be a good thing and we look forward to covering some of the results.
We introduced [Ashhar]We have previously reported on a BITX build here at Hackaday. If you are wondering what this amateur radio business is all about, we encourage you to read about it [Bill Meara]Guest post on this topic.
Many Thanks [Seebach] for the tip.