Australian Amateur Radio Station
( S.T.a.R )
S.T.a.R is an acronym for Software Transmitter and Receiver and was developed by Peter Rhodes
several years ago.  The original articles appeared in Radcom and were a full description of
building a HF multiband transceiver.  I decided to tackle this project as soon as I had found out about it in
early 2009 and thanks to boards produced professionally by VK3PE (Glenn) and the enormous help from the
STaR community, I was able to complete my STaR transciever without too much fuss.  Those interested in the
S.T.a.R. (also known as Pic-A-Star) are directed to do a google search on the topic.  There is an abundance
of information and the best and first place to start is to look at the Picaproject forum on YAHOO.

The original files can be located here:
Goto the Files section and under "Pic-A-Star"  all the necessary files, including the original article can be

If after reading the information you are interested in building the transciever, then the best thing to do is join
the Pic-A-Star Users' group at:

It would also be a good idea to check out Glenn's website (VK3PE) at:

For those in VK,  a builders' net is usually held every monday at 2000 EST on  3.6550 MHz.
Having completed my 1st STaR, I was so impressed with it's performance that I built a 2nd.  For STaR 2
I decided to incorporate the graphical display. I found the PCB method of construction very easy to
implement and whilst the aesthetics may not be as good as a professionally custom fabricated
enclosure made from Aluminum sheet,  I am still reasonably happy and of more importance, the
functionality is 100%.  


Below are some pictures of my 1st STaR transceiver build. As can be seen I opted for the "all-PCB
enclosure" method of fabrication. The mechanical construction was by far the most time consuming and
looking at what other builders did with their STaRs certainly gave me ideas on the most electrically and
mechanically suitable layout for my transceiver.  I hope these pictures might help others.
Completed Front Panel Layout
A Codan 3 stage HF  amplifier module was found on the surplus market.  This
was placed the back of my  STaR enclosure.  0dBm in = > 100 W PEP out.  
This PA was easy to integrate into my transceiver.  The Amplifier assembly is
easily removed from the rear to provide greater access.
Top cover removed showing further
compartment shielding.  Very thorough
shielding , DC and RF cable routing
techniques are used.  The Pic-N-Mix
board is just behind the front panel, the
DSP and IF "combo" is in the middle, the
BPF is to the left and the VFO Encoder
and Primary DC circuits on the right.
IF board with covers removed.
Bottom Cover removed showing "Magic
Roundabout", "Timer Board", "DSP (Cover  
on) Assembly, "Audio Amp and Matrix  
Board" assemblies.   Also shown against the
front panel is the RS232 Switch fully
shielded.  The feed through capacitors
visible at the bottom right are connections
into the Pic N Mix.
Early days into the project:   Pic N Mix (working!),  DDS, home brewed encoder
and BPF assemblies.
More back panel photos
STaR-1  pictures and description below.

STaR-2 pictures and description - follow the
link with the picture :