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A Stable Radio Microphone With Loop Antenna

Anyone who has constructed any of the numerous transmitter circuits on the web will have
found most of them to be unstable. The reason – they lack crystal control. Wide deviation FM (as
employed on the FM broadcast band) is not amenable to crystal control - the frequency deviation
is too great and a crystal oscillator simply cannot be made to deviate that far. The answer – a
phase locked loop – is complex and too big an undertaking for most hobbyists.

T he stability of these circuits is made worse by the

usual choice of antenna – a piece of dangling wire.
But even a rigid whip antenna doesn’t improve mat-
ters very much. The simple presence of an antenna causes the
immediate RF environment to become part of the oscillator
circuit with the consequence that any change in that environ-
ment results in a change in load and a shift in transmit fre-

We present here the loop antenna - something of an outsider

until quite recently when it found application in the large num-
ber of MP3 transmitters on the market. The loop is fairly
unique amongst the antenna types in that it doesn’t depend on a
ground ‘ballast’. The circulating currents in the loop radiate RF
energy, most of which destructively interferes for a loop of a
practical size, but radiate it does nonetheless.

The loop's independence of a ground or counterpoise brings

a very considerable stability dividend - it is almost independent
of the RF environment. As a result, surrounding objects
(including you) are no longer part of the radiating process. This
yields a transmitter that doesn't shift transmit frequency if you
come near it or pick it up! You can even touch the 'cold' side of
the loop without significant frequency shift!

To be effective, a loop antenna needs to be resonant. But if

the loop is substituted in place of the transmitter's usual tank
inductor, then resonance is assured regardless of the actual
transmit frequency. The result is a very compact transmitter
that is stable AND has useful range. Something of a dream
Plastic pillars and tie wraps come true really!
serve to secure the loop to the
main board, thereby prevent- The core transmitter components (those inside the dotted
box) are mounted on a sub-board. This is for no other purpose
ing movement of the loop in than to move the critical transmitter components out to a mid-
the event that the radio micro- depth position in the case. Note too how the ‘hot’ end of the
phone is dropped. loop (that connected to the second transistor collector) is more
central than the ‘cold’ end (that connected to the supply).
These two stratagems serve to put distance between these key
components and the user’s hand.

Advanced Electronics Projects

Stable Radio Microphone With Loop Antenna

10K 2K2 0.1

47K 47K 22p 1-22p **

0.1 on/off

56K 2N2222

1n 470

** 35mm square loop of ideally 2mm diameter wire


Transistors BC547 1
2N2222 1

Resistors 470Ω 1
2K2 1
47K 2
56K 1
1M 1

Variable resistor 10K 1

Capacitor 10p 1
(All are ceramic 22p 1
capacitors) 1n or 1Kpf 2
0.1μF 3

Button trimmer 1-22p 1

Condenser MIC 1
LED - Red 1
On/Off Switch 1
Battery 9V (6F22 type) 1
9V Battery clip 1

Copyright © 2009 Devadas.K. All rights reserved.

Advanced Electronics Projects