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Poor decode.... setting adjustment ?

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  • obrienaj
    I have 21 days left on my trial. I have seen how well CW Skimmer seems to perform for others via my call being reflected back on the reverse beacon network.
    Message 1 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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      I have 21 days left on my trial. I have seen how well CW Skimmer seems to perform for others via my call being reflected back on the reverse beacon network. I have also read many comments about just how well it decodes CW. Perhaps I am missing something in the settings ...because I find the decode capability to be fairly poor , compared to some other decoding applications.

      Since the claim of good CW Skimmer performance is made by many respected hams , I have to assume it is not the software . Is there a squelch-type setting that I am missing and need to set up ? Maybe it is just bad fists that I am encountering this weekend.

      I am not expecting it to decode a rag-chew, just spot a few CQs and callsigns.

      Andy K3UK
    • Pete Smith
      Andy, are you using it with an SDR or with audio from your receiver? If with audio, have you checked for the possibility that the audio level is too high? For
      Message 2 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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        Andy, are you using it with an SDR or with audio from your receiver? If
        with audio, have you checked for the possibility that the audio level is
        too high?

        For a second or two after you QSY the green zone (the audio bandpass),
        you will see very bad decoding on that stream, but if you let things sit
        still it quickly cleans up. You don't have to move the green zone to
        get decoding, except in the lower decoder window. Point your mouse
        cursor to an active decoder, and you will see what has been decoded
        there recently. Keep in mind that Skimmer is not primarily a CW
        decoder, so the user interface is optimized for different purposes - to
        find, decode, and identify stations across a wide bandpass.

        My SkimmerServer was decoding ~1800 spots per 30 minutes during the NAQP
        yesterday - pretty amazing. No, I wasn't using it during the contest,
        but rather testing for CPU load - that was using about 30 percent of the
        CPU of my small dual-core Pentium.

        73, Pete N4ZR
        Visit the Contesting Compendium at http://wiki.contesting.com
        The World Contest Station Database, updated daily at www.conteststations.com
        The Reverse Beacon Network at http://reversebeacon.net


        On 1/10/2010 11:19 AM, obrienaj wrote:
        > I have 21 days left on my trial. I have seen how well CW Skimmer seems to perform for others via my call being reflected back on the reverse beacon network. I have also read many comments about just how well it decodes CW. Perhaps I am missing something in the settings ...because I find the decode capability to be fairly poor , compared to some other decoding applications.
        >
        > Since the claim of good CW Skimmer performance is made by many respected hams , I have to assume it is not the software . Is there a squelch-type setting that I am missing and need to set up ? Maybe it is just bad fists that I am encountering this weekend.
        >
        > I am not expecting it to decode a rag-chew, just spot a few CQs and callsigns.
        >
        > Andy K3UK
        >
        >
        >
        > ------------------------------------
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
      • obrienaj
        Today, with my TS-2000. Hopefully with SDR in middle of enxt week, when it arrives. I just read your guide at
        Message 3 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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          Today, with my TS-2000. Hopefully with SDR in middle of enxt week, when it arrives.

          I just read your guide at http://www.dxatlas.com/CwSkimmer/Files/Skimmerintro.pdf

          and have found it very useful, thanks. I have decoding improvements already.


          Next issue... zero beating. When the rig is set to WIDE filter for Skimmer use.. how are Skimmer users ensuring that they are zero beat for a "tight" transmit ? Do we do it the old fashioned way or are their Skimmer tricks?

          Andy K3Uk

          --- In dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com, Pete Smith <n4zr@...> wrote:
          >
          > Andy, are you using it with an SDR or with audio from your receiver? If
          > with audio, have you checked for the possibility that the audio level is
          > too high?
          >
          > For a second or two after you QSY the green zone (the audio bandpass),
          > you will see very bad decoding on that stream, but if you let things sit
          > still it quickly cleans up. You don't have to move the green zone to
          > get decoding, except in the lower decoder window. Point your mouse
          > cursor to an active decoder, and you will see what has been decoded
          > there recently. Keep in mind that Skimmer is not primarily a CW
          > decoder, so the user interface is optimized for different purposes - to
          > find, decode, and identify stations across a wide bandpass.
          >
          > My SkimmerServer was decoding ~1800 spots per 30 minutes during the NAQP
          > yesterday - pretty amazing. No, I wasn't using it during the contest,
          > but rather testing for CPU load - that was using about 30 percent of the
          > CPU of my small dual-core Pentium.
          >
          > 73, Pete N4ZR
          > Visit the Contesting Compendium at http://wiki.contesting.com
          > The World Contest Station Database, updated daily at www.conteststations.com
          > The Reverse Beacon Network at http://reversebeacon.net
          >
          >
          > On 1/10/2010 11:19 AM, obrienaj wrote:
          > > I have 21 days left on my trial. I have seen how well CW Skimmer seems to perform for others via my call being reflected back on the reverse beacon network. I have also read many comments about just how well it decodes CW. Perhaps I am missing something in the settings ...because I find the decode capability to be fairly poor , compared to some other decoding applications.
          > >
          > > Since the claim of good CW Skimmer performance is made by many respected hams , I have to assume it is not the software . Is there a squelch-type setting that I am missing and need to set up ? Maybe it is just bad fists that I am encountering this weekend.
          > >
          > > I am not expecting it to decode a rag-chew, just spot a few CQs and callsigns.
          > >
          > > Andy K3UK
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > ------------------------------------
          > >
          > > Yahoo! Groups Links
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          >
        • Pete Smith
          You will find that when running a separate radio Skimmer can be set up to control your radio, such that when you move the green demodulator box onto a signal
          Message 4 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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            You will find that when running a separate radio Skimmer can be set up
            to control your radio, such that when you move the green demodulator box
            onto a signal stream, it will send the frequency of that stream to your
            radio. The streams are only 50 Hz wide, so that is plenty tight. The
            secret is an application by Ed, W2RF, called Rigsync. It is freeware
            and you can easily Google for the download. It is a little tricky to
            set up, but once it's done, it's great.

            73, Pete N4ZR
            Visit the Contesting Compendium at http://wiki.contesting.com
            The World Contest Station Database, updated daily at www.conteststations.com
            The Reverse Beacon Network at http://reversebeacon.net


            On 1/10/2010 12:10 PM, obrienaj wrote:
            > Today, with my TS-2000. Hopefully with SDR in middle of enxt week, when it arrives.
            >
            > I just read your guide at http://www.dxatlas.com/CwSkimmer/Files/Skimmerintro.pdf
            >
            > and have found it very useful, thanks. I have decoding improvements already.
            >
            >
            > Next issue... zero beating. When the rig is set to WIDE filter for Skimmer use.. how are Skimmer users ensuring that they are zero beat for a "tight" transmit ? Do we do it the old fashioned way or are their Skimmer tricks?
            >
            > Andy K3Uk
            >
            > --- In dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com, Pete Smith<n4zr@...> wrote:
            >
            >> Andy, are you using it with an SDR or with audio from your receiver? If
            >> with audio, have you checked for the possibility that the audio level is
            >> too high?
            >>
            >> For a second or two after you QSY the green zone (the audio bandpass),
            >> you will see very bad decoding on that stream, but if you let things sit
            >> still it quickly cleans up. You don't have to move the green zone to
            >> get decoding, except in the lower decoder window. Point your mouse
            >> cursor to an active decoder, and you will see what has been decoded
            >> there recently. Keep in mind that Skimmer is not primarily a CW
            >> decoder, so the user interface is optimized for different purposes - to
            >> find, decode, and identify stations across a wide bandpass.
            >>
            >> My SkimmerServer was decoding ~1800 spots per 30 minutes during the NAQP
            >> yesterday - pretty amazing. No, I wasn't using it during the contest,
            >> but rather testing for CPU load - that was using about 30 percent of the
            >> CPU of my small dual-core Pentium.
            >>
            >> 73, Pete N4ZR
            >> Visit the Contesting Compendium at http://wiki.contesting.com
            >> The World Contest Station Database, updated daily at www.conteststations.com
            >> The Reverse Beacon Network at http://reversebeacon.net
            >>
            >>
            >> On 1/10/2010 11:19 AM, obrienaj wrote:
            >>
            >>> I have 21 days left on my trial. I have seen how well CW Skimmer seems to perform for others via my call being reflected back on the reverse beacon network. I have also read many comments about just how well it decodes CW. Perhaps I am missing something in the settings ...because I find the decode capability to be fairly poor , compared to some other decoding applications.
            >>>
            >>> Since the claim of good CW Skimmer performance is made by many respected hams , I have to assume it is not the software . Is there a squelch-type setting that I am missing and need to set up ? Maybe it is just bad fists that I am encountering this weekend.
            >>>
            >>> I am not expecting it to decode a rag-chew, just spot a few CQs and callsigns.
            >>>
            >>> Andy K3UK
            >>>
            >>>
            >>>
            >>> ------------------------------------
            >>>
            >>> Yahoo! Groups Links
            >>>
            >>>
            >>>
            >>>
            >>>
            >>>
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > ------------------------------------
            >
            > Yahoo! Groups Links
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Alex, VE3NEA
            Hi Andy, If you are using CW Skimmer with TS-2000, you have to switch the radio to the CW mode and enter the correct CW Pitch value in the Settings dialog.
            Message 5 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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              Hi Andy,

              If you are using CW Skimmer with TS-2000, you have to switch the radio to
              the CW mode and enter the correct CW Pitch value in the Settings dialog.
              This will ensure that you transmit exactly on the same frequency as you
              receive. You can then click on the callsign label on the Skimmer band map,
              or on the signal trace on the waterfall display, and start calling that
              station.

              73 Alex VE3NEA



              ----- Original Message -----
              From: "obrienaj" <k3uk@...>
              To: <dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2010 12:10 PM
              Subject: Re: [dxatlas] etting adjustment ?/ Zero beat


              Today, with my TS-2000. Hopefully with SDR in middle of enxt week, when it
              arrives.

              I just read your guide at
              http://www.dxatlas.com/CwSkimmer/Files/Skimmerintro.pdf

              and have found it very useful, thanks. I have decoding improvements
              already.


              Next issue... zero beating. When the rig is set to WIDE filter for Skimmer
              use.. how are Skimmer users ensuring that they are zero beat for a "tight"
              transmit ? Do we do it the old fashioned way or are their Skimmer tricks?

              Andy K3Uk
            • obrienaj
              Thanks Alex.
              Message 6 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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                Thanks Alex.

                --- In dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com, "Alex, VE3NEA" <alshovk@...> wrote:
                >
                > Hi Andy,
                >
                > If you are using CW Skimmer with TS-2000, you have to switch the radio to
                > the CW mode and enter the correct CW Pitch value in the Settings dialog.
              • obrienaj
                ... Thanks Pete. I have set RigSync so that it is reading VFO A and B from my TS2000. Just need SDR to arrive and I can move on to the next stage. Andy
                Message 7 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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                  --- In dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com, Pete Smith <n4zr@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > You will find that when running a separate radio Skimmer can be set up
                  > to control your radio, such that when you move the green demodulator box
                  > onto a signal stream, it will send the frequency of that stream to your
                  > radio. The streams are only 50 Hz wide, so that is plenty tight. The
                  > secret is an application by Ed, W2RF, called Rigsync. It is freeware
                  > and you can easily Google for the download. It is a little tricky to
                  > set up, but once it's done, it's great.
                  >

                  Thanks Pete. I have set RigSync so that it is reading VFO A and B from my TS2000. Just need SDR to arrive and I can move on to the next stage.

                  Andy K3UK
                • obrienaj
                  ... My TS2000 had a pitch setting that differed from CW Skimmer s default by 200 Hz. Enough to upset my ear. With the two matched, I seem to be very close to
                  Message 8 of 8 , Jan 10, 2010
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                    --- In dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com, "Alex, VE3NEA" <alshovk@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Hi Andy,
                    >
                    > If you are using CW Skimmer with TS-2000, you have to switch the radio to
                    > the CW mode and enter the correct CW Pitch value in the Settings dialog.
                    > This will ensure that you transmit exactly on the same frequency as you
                    > receive. You can then click on the callsign label on the Skimmer band map,
                    > or on the signal trace on the waterfall display, and start calling that
                    > station.
                    >

                    My TS2000 had a pitch setting that differed from CW Skimmer's default by 200 Hz. Enough to upset my ear. With the two matched, I seem to be very close to zero beat whenever needed.

                    Thanks for the tip.

                    Andy K3UK
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