One remote streaming international TV with a VPN; Roku and a secondary router.

One remote streaming international TV with a VPN; Roku and a secondary router.
What works (What doesn't work later!)
Roku media box with a secondary VPN router.
Roku has apps for the streaming services I want, others don't. Specific streaming services are Britbox (USA not UK), Motortrend (USA) and Lucus Oil TV (USA). All out of the USA allows just one VPN router.

Sometimes need a USA address and credit card. MyUSA, the freight forwarder gives an address in Florida. American Express, even if issued outside the USA seems to work out ok as a USA credit card.
Roku registration needs a USA address and a USA credit card. Motortrend and Lucus Oil TV will work with a non-USA card if they are available in that country, in my case Australia.
Roku boxes are hard to get outside of the USA. I bought mine on eBay but Amazon won't ship them and there aren't many sellers on eBay.
A general guide to setup a secondary VPN router. https://www.vpnuniversit…

Radio Applications of Deep Learning Noise Suppression and Speech Enhancement Part 1: Current Deep Learning Apps

NVIDA My initial contact with DNN noise reduction was the NVIDA RTX Voice beta. It is meant to work with the new NVIDA RTX graphics cards but works with some earlier ones, specifically the GTX 1060 in my machine. The installer needs to be hacked for non-RTX cards but needs the latest NVIDA drivers.

The RTX Voice beta seems a very early release with very little documentation, other than how to install and use it. It seems to be part of the RTX Broadcast Engine but not documented.
RTX Broadcast Engine: GPU-accelerated SDKs that deliver AI-powered content creation features

Krisp-2Hz Started as 2Hz then became Krisp. Much that was promised by 2Hz doesn't seem to be available through Krisp, such as st…

Hacking high power switching server power supplies for amateur radio use.


Server power supplies are high-quality, heavy-duty, 24/7 supplies but cheap, less than AU$50. They have been modified for amateur use, particularly to turn them on and to raise the output from 12.2 V to around 13.8 V.

Mobile phone equipment also has such supplies, but at higher voltages, 24, 36, 48, 60 V. These are good for powering transmitters.

As a technique for finding information, Google the power supply model number(s), then look at images or videos for possible sites of interest. Searching images is very powerful and gets past sales sites.

Apparently, many server supplies have additional airflow to keep then cool under load, so additional cooling may be prudent.
A bit of background to the supplies is considered before what I could find for specific models. Some of the links consider RF noise from these switching supplies, something that needs to be considered. Generally, they are high-quality designs with little RF noise, especially compared to laptop supplies…

Macbook Pro issues and fixes

I am a long time PC guy, although my first usable computer was a Singapore copy of an Apple II in 1980. Over the years I have dabbled with Hackintoshes once Apple started using Intel chips.

Recently I bought a couple of cheap 2012 Macbook Pros and managed to get one good one. It has been useful in trying to get the big Mac Pro going. The screen was broken on one and the other had a good screen but would not power on, a common problem with Macs. Swapping them over was straight forward, then updating to an SSD and the latest Mac OS. A working Mac is pretty essential to reinstalling Mac OS as a copy must be downloaded from the Apple Store. It may be possible to get a torrent and create the boot USB drive on a PC but not simple.
Mac serial numbers The model number of a Mac can only be determined by its serial number. The model number on the case applies to 18 models. The date on the case may help.

Apple has a site to check serial numbers:
How to crea…

Single and Dual Xeon workstations builds from components 2017

Introduction While writing the blog on my latest dual Xeon workstation, I discovered I hadn't written a post on earlier single and dual Xeon builds. So, a quick post on them using photos from earlier.

The first was a single Xeon workstation for my son while he was studying mechanical engineering and doing airflow simulation using Solidworks. I used an "engineering sample" (ES) Xeon to cut costs. The details are in the photos. E5-2650 v4 (30M Cache, 2.20 GHz)

Having done the single Xeon, I tried a dual Xeon machine. At first, I used ES V4 Xeons, but from different eBay suppliers. I subsequently discovered they weren't exactly the same and would not work. In hindsight, two ES Xeons (same stepping and printing on the case) from the same supplier might work. ES processors only work with some motherboards. I then used two older generation Xeons, V3, with success. E5 2683 V3 2.0 GHz The Micro Systems dual motherboard is not very friendly for running Windows 10, but I even…

Cheap thrills: Dual boot dual Xeon workstation; Dell Precision T5610 Windows 10 and Hackintosh

I like building and playing with very fast computers but I can't afford new ones. In the past, I have built a dual Xeon from components but even that was quite expensive. However, it is possible to buy old servers and workstations for a reasonable cost and upgrade them with modern components, first off, an SSD.


The machine I bought was a Dell Precision T5610 Workstation 2 x XEON E5-2650 v2 CPUs 64Gb 240Gb SSD 1Tb HDD $900 on eBay AU March 2020. It was first available in 2014 but still quite capable with a total of 16 cores and 32 threads.

The machine was booting to a cheap 2.5" SSD via a RAID card. The RAID card is of limited use now as a RAID 1 mirror can be achieved with two nvme SSD drivers in Windows "Storage Spaces". Raid 0 stripping is of little use now as the speed of nvme drives is high. So I removed the RAID card and installed a nvme SSD drive on a cheap generic pci express card.

Windows 10 on NVME SSD The first job is to get Windows to run on a fast …

"Just" my smartphone camera; Computational Photography

After a long time, I have found what I was searching for; improving photographs with computers via multiple frames. I am interested in video for DATV (Digital Amateur TV) and was impressed with some of the image processing in CCTV security systems. However, most of this was based on single images. I had investigated improved day and night, long-distance photography as our house has panoramic views on the Queensland Gold Coast. Most of these techniques used multiple photos from a DSLR and post-processing with Photoshop or similar. Optical astronomers are well advanced.

However, the real progress seems to be driven by smartphones. Most people use their phones for photos now, with DSLRs a rarity outside tourist destinations. But phones have tiny cameras with small lenses and image sensor. Computational photography has allowed these small cameras to perform very well for particularly for images, but also video.

Smartphone photography, mainly iPhone (Jan 2019)…