[time-nuts] wtd: WWVB info

Bob Camp kb8tq at n1k.org
Tue Aug 11 18:59:21 EDT 2015


It’s *far* more likely that Everest will sell the IP on the receiver to each of the
“usual suspects”. Then the watch guys will each incorporate it in their micro 
BGA chips that sit inside this or that watch. It will be in the same chip as all
the stepper drivers, display drivers, and other junk. Those are the guys who 
have the money to buy the tech first. 

Once they have it going (and the first to sign up probably gets a 2 year exclusive),
it migrates from the high end watches to the less exciting ones. At some point the 
IP cost drops far enough for one of the clock guys to drop it onto an all in one BGA
for their gear. Might it be a bigger package - maybe. They probably have a bunch of
LCD segments to drive so maybe not. I’d expect it in a talking / walking / clock / radio/
weather station / phone / popcorn popper combo device first. 

Until that part of the world is fully loaded with parts, there is not a lot of incentive 
to go much further with it as any sort of stand alone receiver on a chip. That end of
the market is way smaller than even the clock market. Doubly so unlikely since it’s still being 
fed quite adequately by chips that went out of production years ago. The only slight
chance would be to get some of the short run of demo chips that people will do to 
validate the IP. You might still have to wire bond them up to use them ….

Thus the desire to get a sub $100 set of boards up and running as a very high performance / 
modern radio. Even with fancy parts it’s not going to be over $200 for the hardware. If you go 
with PHK’s basic approach (no FPGA / no fancy ADC / all software)  it *might* be $24.00 (single 
piece board) plus shipping from Mouser (1,142 in stock) with a QVGA display included. 


> On Aug 11, 2015, at 8:18 AM, paul swed <paulswedb at gmail.com> wrote:
> If you need time the GPS chips are the way to go.
> Heavens for $11 I think you get the complete system with antenna.
> The old wwvb chips do still work as well as they ever did. They detect AM
> and thats still a part of the format. They are as reliable as they ever
> were. (Sort of not if you live on the East coast) due to facts stated
> already.
> The new wwvb format indeed does improve on all of the issues stated. There
> are papers written about it and are good reads.
> So it could be worth while to build up a discreet receiver PLL and such to
> recover the data. But as a company Everset has to find the market that will
> keep them in business. I suspect thats why we do not see any products.
> If they are successful I will expect something like the following.
> Clocks that can decode time easily 99% of the time per day. I have measured
> the am chips and they are sub 30% of the day.That these may be $50 or more
> to start. They actually consistently work in any orientation. No more must
> face west.
> I hope they are succesful. But if you are a builder/programmer everything
> you need is available.
> Regards
> Paul
> On Tue, Aug 11, 2015 at 3:14 AM, Chris Albertson <albertson.chris at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> You might look into GPS devices.  They aren't quite as cheap as the WWVB
>>> chips, but there are lots of them on the market.
>> Yes GPS receivers can be very cheap and self contained and much easier yo
>> use than those WWVB chips.  I have two of the chips.  I don't think they
>> work now that WWVB has changed format and even back in the day they only
>> worked for a few hours at night.  GPS is better.
>> But there is another good source for correct time.  Most people today have
>> WiFi in their house, at school and at work.  If the clock is going into an
>> area where WiFi  is available then it can connect to NTP.    If the clock
>> connects to WiFi you can save money and parts count by not needing any
>> physical controls on the clock for setting or to control options as all
>> that can be done from a smart phone's web browser
>> --
>> Chris Albertson
>> Redondo Beach, California
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