I just tested the rtlsdr plugin with rtl_ais a bit. Basically there is something seriously wrong with my setup after all. I can pick up ships no farther than 6 miles. Maybe this is normal since the antenna
is only a 1.5 meters above the water
? Anyway... sometimes it drops packets even when targets are within 2 miles. My dc-dc power adapter maybe adds noise
to the setup, and maybe my antenna
is suspect, not sure.
It did work however, and did warn me actually ships that several ship were going to pass within a half mile (and they did) from 10-20 minutes in advance
Also I saw a strange red light and wondered what kind of ship it was, and turns out it was a sailing vessel (since rtl_ais picks up B targets) I already knew the boat by it's name.
Now I was averaging 9 knots for the past few hours on only a single
sail (incredible speed from the current) The other sailboat was averaging 13 knots over ground.
I also have an upconverter for my rtlsdr. It adds 125mhz to the incoming signal, so with the flip of a switch, I can tune from 0-30mhz. So far I have only picked up shortwave which is very clear. I need a mini whip antenna before I can pick up a lot of things. I should be able to get navtex though.