SolderSmoke Podcasts

Reviews For SolderSmoke Podcasts

unfortunately they do not seem welcoming to new hams or all that ham radio has to offer and I feel do more harm than good for the hobby as a hole. The often call digital modes the dark side “jokingly” but not really. And they often assume everyone is a super builder, if you did not build your rig from paper clips and scraps you have no right to call yourself a ham type of attitude. I have listened to many a ham podcast and there a a lot of the old school ham that are willing to help people learn in a much more inclusive way. Your better off spending your listening time elsewhere.
Complaints about politics seem kind of whiny. Once, for a few minutes, they talked about their preferences and that was that. Plenty of hams introduce their political tendencies into discussions, but I guess it’s only bad if you disagree. I still enjoy listening to Bill and Pete. They know what they’re talking about and fun to listen to, especially when I’m at the workbench.
The host in VA and the sidekick in California stooped very low and used the ham radio platform, one that they had handled so well in the past, to puke a ridiculous political rant, spewing incorrect information, and demonstrating to all of their listeners how to absolutely ruin a decent podcast that is supposed to be about ham radio. There are plenty of politically-based podcasts, but there’s never ever any room in ham radio for mean-spirited, vile, political or religious discussions. Bill and Pete sadly crossed this line and should be ashamed of themselves. I will never waste another minute listening to this podcast nor will I support this podcast in the future.
This podcast became political and I will not be able to listen again!
A little shocked on your political rant in the 10/31 episode but not a surprise. One host from Virginia swamp land and another from the Left coast - understood where they stood before this, but didn’t need a political treatise on who I should vote for. Thanks for your ham radio science (should limit it to that) and even your book. I will look for my ham radio information elsewhere - thankfully, we all have choices. Wish you well.
I discovered this podcast (and their blogs and YouTube channels) last February and they have become my favorite. Bill and Pete are experts (some would say wizards) in the radio arts and their monthly podcasts are a perfect mix of technical deep dives and witty banter. Their discussions have led me to build and experiment far more than I ever had, and it has been a blast.
I’ve been a subscriber for while now. I listened to you for the technical topics and themes. This morning, 3 days prior to the 2020 election you made this my last episode with you. If I needed to hear someone tell me what to think about politics, what has been happening politically and who to vote for, I’d tune in to CNN or Fox. I don’t care what’s on your bench anymore. I’m an independent thinker with a brain. I can watch and read the news and subsequently make my own decision. I’m unloading you guys along with our local newspaper (which is also filled with political hate) and I don’t bother with many national publications for the same reason. I listen to podcasts for entertainment or education, neither of which you fulfill anymore. So long and goodby.
Why in the world did you have to taint what otherwise is a FANTASTIC podcast with more politics! We get politics 24/7 from everywhere and we don’t go to an ameteur radio podcast for more of the same. Please do what you do best and keep the politics to yourself as I literally couldn’t listen past about 90 seconds! I’ll tune in for 227 in hope that you 2 are back to what you do best! Sincerely Larry Holden W5MPA
I just recently discovered this Podcast. Due to responsibilities of life I haven’t been active with the hobby in the last 10 years, but their podcast has certainly motivated me to want to get active on the air as well as break out that soldering iron. I enjoyed the technical aspects of the hobby and I’m learning a lot from them. They don’t have problems with failure, and encourage their listeners to try. I look forward to listening to the past as well as future episodes.
back in the 70s i’d get together with friends and we’d talk about the new processors, memory, to hack TI calculators... the discussions would often begin with radio... or end there with us talking about what we were building, or fixing, modding, or dreaming about. some of the guys were way out in front and they were the elmers. those of us in the middle elmered the new guys. this show is a lot like that. centered on radio it often broadens to include some microcontroller topics—but always how they might relate to a rig project. if you remember being in a group like that and miss it—this is for you. if you went it alone back when, or are new to the hobby—this is for you too. couple this with their blog and you have a great radio makers resource! thanks for the shows guys. much appreciated. 73
This is a wonderful monthly podcast about the shear joy of wireless. It feeds that fascination that some of us have with radio communications. You know it if you’ve got it ;) I’ve been listening to this ‘cast since the very beginning (with Mike, RIP) and can honestly say I look forward to every ‘episode’. I put episode in quotes because they’re not really episodes at all, they’re more like rag-chews or hangouts — friendly and personal interactions that are also informative and inspiring. I’ve had a life-long interest in electronics (and radio), but *this* is what inspired me to get my ham ticket and actually participate a bit. Keep up the great work Bill and Pete, it is very much appreciated! Cheers, Scott KB1WMH
This is an absolutely addictive podcast. After every episode Bill and Pete will make you want to fire up that soldering iron and melt some solder. They explain their various projects with just enough technical information to not bore you with absolute basics, but still not so complex as to be way beyond most of us homebrewers. They love tinkering with circuits and have years of experience and share in what they have learned. They even explain how they have released the magic smoke that makes components work. This and QSO today are the two ham podcasts that are extremely well done and inspirational. Bill has written a couple of books that are worth looking into. 73 DE K7RJ
Bill has the gift of the gab and his shows are always interesting and entertaining. The production isnt too cheesey or too over the top, he invites you into his shack to discuss electronics and ham radio over coffee and the lovely aroma of solder smoke. Keep up the great work Bill. Chris KJ4GUU


For homebrew radio fans


I just found out about this and now I eagerly await new episodes.
SolderSmoke inspired me to get my amateur radio license after decades of apathy because it introduced me to a wonderfully refreshing corner of the hobby -- QRP homebrewing. I've learned a lot about this hobby by listening to this podcast. From LTSpice to WSPR to QRSS to DSB to Drake 2Bs to SPRAT and more, Bill covers a wide range of topics with enthusiasm and a flair for storytelling. The Mailbag segment brings a sense of community to the program with feedback from listeners and builders. Check out all 125+ episodes available on the web. Thanks Bill (and Mike) for bringing to my attention a niche in amateur radio that finally piqued my interest and got me motivated.
Solder Smoke is a great podcast for anyone with a curiosity or passion for the art of radio. What I like is Bill's openness and honesty about the difficulties involved in both understanding theory and in the practical issues of building, as well as the joys of getting your own creations on the air. Even more important than that, Bill conveys very clearly the mystery and excitement of radio that I think often times is missing in dry technical reports within many magazine articles. In hearing of his discoveries with part selections and new approaches, it gives the listener ideas of things to try. Also I find myself wanting to explore many new projects that I had either forgotten about or never heard of before (like Joe Taylor's "Whisper". Finally, Bill has a good speaking voice and style. It is a pleasure to listen to (with the one exception of his speech impediment with the "S"'s!). I only wish this show was weekly, and that it would be broadcast to a wider audience (like on TV or radio). It is a rare gem.
There isn't much chat about homebrewing, just a lot of chat about Italy and rambling ideas. Sigh, it could have been great. Sorry, no hard feelings, but that's the way it goes.
Bill Meara continues to produce an excellent podcast. Part ham homebrew electronics forum, part travelogue, part geek zeitgeist commentary. Keep up the great work Bill; thumbs up! 73s de Bob, WP4BQV/VQ9BQV.
Great podcast on radio and electronics. It's clean and can be useful for experienced and electronics newbies. A must for homebrewers.
This is a great homebrew / hacking / make podcast about amateur radio construction and building for low power devices. Just listening has given me many ideas and much information on how to build my first QRP transmitter (Pixie 2). Bill is a great guy and very funny to listen to, the podcast is varied and interesting to listen to. I often solder with SolderSmoke playing by my bench. Don't miss this.
For those of us who are afflicted with a malady know as "The Knack," there is no better medication than to listen to our beloved host, Bill Meara expouse the art of homebrewing amateur radio equipment and QRP gear. Bill also gives the listener a taste of what its like to live and work in Rome with his family. I give this podcast a solide thumbs up!
Currently I don't have space and time to do anything with my old passion. Listening to this podcast is very nice. Late at night / early morning with a nice warm coffee in my hand its just me and the mysterious radio waves presented in this podcast. One day I will have space to tinker and string a wire between some trees!