I learned of the Minimalist Double Sideband Transceiver (MDT) kit from the video review by VK3YE and thought it might be a fun project.
The price is $75 but it includes everything you need except a microphone. The parts are well packed and clearly marked. The circuit board is excellent quality and all parts fitted well.
The manual is very clear and I found construction quite smooth.
The only confusion I experienced was figuring out which way around the BD139 transistors go in the board (the label side is closest to the edge of the board).
I spent a lazy Saturday on and off doing the build in short bursts. Late in the afternoon I was tuning around and the direct conversion receiver sounds excellent. The carrier nulling was easy and from what I can hear off air transmit audio sounds good. So far no one has responded to my CQ calls for a report but I'll get back to you when that milestone is passed.
It's a great kit for a constructor with at least a little experience. A very compact rig that could be good to take on a hike.
Update: First contact with Mal, VK2BMS who said the audio sounds good although a little basey - which is probably more due to the microphone than anything. Mid dial was 7.10604 so that's good to know.
With the second varicap link open mine covers 7.090 - 7.127MHz. Tuning is quite sensitive so I wouldn't want more range without a multi-turn pot so I think this is a good range.
Just had another contact with Ian, VK3AXH in Ballarat who gave me a 5 and 3. He's running 200W and I'm running about 2W DSB. He commented that the rig is "doing a remarkable job". I do find that after switch on it drifts a bit but it's a pleasure to use.