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Re: [softrock40] Made a QSO with SDR exciter

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  • Bill Tracey
    Congrats Terry. Guess I forgot to post on how the Tx/Rx changeover can be seutp -- PowerSDR can use a serial port on the PC to control the SoftRock T/R
    Message 1 of 7 , Oct 1, 2006
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      Congrats Terry.

      Guess I forgot to post on how the Tx/Rx changeover can be seutp --
      PowerSDR can use a serial port on the PC to control the SoftRock T/R switching

      To set it up, you will need to go into Setup->CAT and Enable PTT Control
      on that page, by selecting a port and checking RTS as the pin to use.

      The comm port will be setup such that:

      DTR - T/R out positive = Xmit, negative=Recv -- this goes the SoftRock
      T/R line

      RTS - will be tied positive

      CTS - PTT in -- pull high to xmit.

      If PowerSDR insists upon going into MOX when you start it you will need to
      start it with a --ignore-pp-ptt option to get it to ignore the parallel port.

      You can also hook a key to the Serial port and use PowerSDR's keyer --
      I'll have to look around a bit and find the docs on the wiring for that.

      Cheers,

      Bill (kd5tfd)

      At 08:15 PM 10/1/2006, Terry wrote:
      >Well, I have added myself to those who actually made a QSO using Tony's
      >new exciter. At 855PM this evening, I was able to talk with WU9F in
      >Madison, WI (his name is also Terry). My RST was only 449, but it came
      >up during the QSO. Madison on 1/2 watt from Charleston, SC isn't too
      >bad for a first-time contact.
      >
      >Now, if only I can figure out PowerSDR with my laptop (keying and turn-
      >around of audio is a pain). Tx/Rx changeover was a lot of fun!!
      >Terry
    • Terry Fox
      Thanks Bill. I got the Tx control via DTR working before the QSO, but I had two other issues - both related to using a laptop on my bench. The first issue is
      Message 2 of 7 , Oct 1, 2006
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        Thanks Bill.  I got the Tx control via DTR working before the QSO, but I had two other issues - both related to using a laptop on my bench.
         
        The first issue is having to plug and unplug the audio out from laptop sound card to exciter.  In receive I needed it unplugged to hear the receive signal on the laptop speakers.  In transmit, I needed to plug it in so the IF audio gets to the exciter.  I have two sound cards in the laptop, the internal one and an Audigy 2 ZS PCMCIA card.  I use the Audigy for receiving, but I cannot seem to get the PowerSDR to use the Audigy for transmit.  Once I figure that out, I no longer need to change the cable, and can use the internal sound card for hearing the receiver.
         
        The second issue is that once I used COM1 for the PTT, I couldn't get PowerSDR to also use COM1 for a key input.  Therefore, I had to use keyboard typing for the QSO.  This leads to a carrier always on whenever the keyboard buffer is empty (or if Iambic is enabled, continuous dots and dashes being transmitted).  Can one use the same COM port for both PTT out and keyer in?  I haven't figured out that magic yet.
         
        I admit that while I printed out the over 200 pages of PowerSDR manual, I only read a minimum to get it running so far.  I am reading more as I can now, however.
         
        Thanks for the response, and thanks for helping make this a fun project.
        Terry
        WB4JFI
         
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Sunday, October 01, 2006 9:47 PM
        Subject: Re: [softrock40] Made a QSO with SDR exciter

        Congrats Terry.

        Guess I forgot to post on how the Tx/Rx changeover can be seutp --
        PowerSDR can use a serial port on the PC to control the SoftRock T/R switching

        To set it up, you will need to go into Setup->CAT and Enable PTT Control
        on that page, by selecting a port and checking RTS as the pin to use.

        The comm port will be setup such that:

        DTR - T/R out positive = Xmit, negative=Recv -- this goes the SoftRock
        T/R line

        RTS - will be tied positive

        CTS - PTT in -- pull high to xmit.

        If PowerSDR insists upon going into MOX when you start it you will need to
        start it with a --ignore-pp- ptt option to get it to ignore the parallel port.

        You can also hook a key to the Serial port and use PowerSDR's keyer --
        I'll have to look around a bit and find the docs on the wiring for that.

        Cheers,

        Bill (kd5tfd)

        At 08:15 PM 10/1/2006, Terry wrote:
        >Well, I have added myself to those who actually made a QSO using Tony's
        >new exciter. At 855PM this evening, I was able to talk with WU9F in
        >Madison, WI (his name is also Terry). My RST was only 449, but it came
        >up during the QSO. Madison on 1/2 watt from Charleston, SC isn't too
        >bad for a first-time contact.
        >
        >Now, if only I can figure out PowerSDR with my laptop (keying and turn-
        >around of audio is a pain). Tx/Rx changeover was a lot of fun!!
        >Terry

      • Terry
        Bill, could you provide some guidance? Thanks in advance for helping with this. I am busy digesting the SDR-1000 manual, but can no longer transmit properly.
        Message 3 of 7 , Oct 2, 2006
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          Bill, could you provide some guidance? Thanks in advance for helping
          with this. I am busy digesting the SDR-1000 manual, but can no
          longer transmit properly. Feel free to communicate directly
          (tfox@...) if you think this is off-topic here.

          I've looked through the SDR-100 manual now, and am still puzzled. I
          have gone backwards, in that I can't seem to change the transmit
          frequency anymore. I am using the Soft Rock exciter, not an SDR-1000.

          1. After playing a lot with the sound card controls, it appears that
          changing sound card input/output/mixer selections only affects the
          SDR software the next time PowerSDR is started. Is that correct,
          that these selections cannot happen "on the fly"?

          2. Is there any way to use the same COM port for both PTT out and
          keyer input?

          3. Is there a way to select one sound card for the IF/RF (tx & rx
          audio), and a different sound card for receive audio to speakers (and
          mic input for eventual SSB)? Would VAC enable me to do that? I have
          an Audigy 4 ZS Notebook (PCMCIA card) for RF sampling, and the
          motherboard sound card could be used for listening to receive audio.
          I haven't messed with VAC yet. That would avoid having to plu &
          unplug stuff between Tx and Rx.

          4. After my first QSO, I haven't had any more luck. It appears that
          no matter where in the 48kHz band I select to listen, the transmit
          audio is the same tone as the TUN tone. I thought it had been
          changing frequency, but now it's not. This is verified with a scope
          and listening on a separate rig. Both the DDS and VFO locks are
          off. What stupid thing am I doing wrong?

          I think that's it for now.
          Thanks again.
          Terry
          WB4JFI




          --- In softrock40@yahoogroups.com, "Terry Fox" <wb4jfi@...> wrote:
          >
          > Thanks Bill. I got the Tx control via DTR working before the QSO,
          but I had two other issues - both related to using a laptop on my
          bench.
          >
          > The first issue is having to plug and unplug the audio out from
          laptop sound card to exciter. In receive I needed it unplugged to
          hear the receive signal on the laptop speakers. In transmit, I
          needed to plug it in so the IF audio gets to the exciter. I have two
          sound cards in the laptop, the internal one and an Audigy 2 ZS PCMCIA
          card. I use the Audigy for receiving, but I cannot seem to get the
          PowerSDR to use the Audigy for transmit. Once I figure that out, I
          no longer need to change the cable, and can use the internal sound
          card for hearing the receiver.
          >
          > The second issue is that once I used COM1 for the PTT, I couldn't
          get PowerSDR to also use COM1 for a key input. Therefore, I had to
          use keyboard typing for the QSO. This leads to a carrier always on
          whenever the keyboard buffer is empty (or if Iambic is enabled,
          continuous dots and dashes being transmitted). Can one use the same
          COM port for both PTT out and keyer in? I haven't figured out that
          magic yet.
          >
          > I admit that while I printed out the over 200 pages of PowerSDR
          manual, I only read a minimum to get it running so far. I am reading
          more as I can now, however.
          >
          > Thanks for the response, and thanks for helping make this a fun
          project.
          > Terry
          > WB4JFI
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: Bill Tracey
          > To: softrock40@yahoogroups.com ; softrock40@yahoogroups.com
          > Sent: Sunday, October 01, 2006 9:47 PM
          > Subject: Re: [softrock40] Made a QSO with SDR exciter
          >
          >
          > Congrats Terry.
          >
          > Guess I forgot to post on how the Tx/Rx changeover can be seutp --

          > PowerSDR can use a serial port on the PC to control the SoftRock
          T/R switching
          >
          > To set it up, you will need to go into Setup->CAT and Enable PTT
          Control
          > on that page, by selecting a port and checking RTS as the pin to
          use.
          >
          > The comm port will be setup such that:
          >
          > DTR - T/R out positive = Xmit, negative=Recv -- this goes the
          SoftRock
          > T/R line
          >
          > RTS - will be tied positive
          >
          > CTS - PTT in -- pull high to xmit.
          >
          > If PowerSDR insists upon going into MOX when you start it you
          will need to
          > start it with a --ignore-pp-ptt option to get it to ignore the
          parallel port.
          >
          > You can also hook a key to the Serial port and use PowerSDR's
          keyer --
          > I'll have to look around a bit and find the docs on the wiring
          for that.
          >
          > Cheers,
          >
          > Bill (kd5tfd)
          >
          > At 08:15 PM 10/1/2006, Terry wrote:
          > >Well, I have added myself to those who actually made a QSO using
          Tony's
          > >new exciter. At 855PM this evening, I was able to talk with WU9F
          in
          > >Madison, WI (his name is also Terry). My RST was only 449, but
          it came
          > >up during the QSO. Madison on 1/2 watt from Charleston, SC isn't
          too
          > >bad for a first-time contact.
          > >
          > >Now, if only I can figure out PowerSDR with my laptop (keying
          and turn-
          > >around of audio is a pain). Tx/Rx changeover was a lot of fun!!
          > >Terry
          >
        • Bill Tracey
          Comments in line below. ... Don t really know. I d think hitting the Power button on the console would cause it to change sound devices. ... I think it should
          Message 4 of 7 , Oct 2, 2006
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            Comments in line below.

            At 07:40 PM 10/2/2006, Terry wrote:
            >Bill, could you provide some guidance? Thanks in advance for helping
            >with this. I am busy digesting the SDR-1000 manual, but can no
            >longer transmit properly. Feel free to communicate directly
            >(tfox@...) if you think this is off-topic here.
            >
            > I've looked through the SDR-100 manual now, and am still puzzled. I
            >have gone backwards, in that I can't seem to change the transmit
            >frequency anymore. I am using the Soft Rock exciter, not an SDR-1000.
            >
            >1. After playing a lot with the sound card controls, it appears that
            >changing sound card input/output/mixer selections only affects the
            >SDR software the next time PowerSDR is started. Is that correct,
            >that these selections cannot happen "on the fly"?

            Don't really know. I'd think hitting the Power button on the console would
            cause it to change sound devices.


            >2. Is there any way to use the same COM port for both PTT out and
            >keyer input?

            I think it should work, but I've never set it up myself so cannot say for
            sure. Will try and set it up here and fix the code if it can't be done.


            >3. Is there a way to select one sound card for the IF/RF (tx & rx
            >audio), and a different sound card for receive audio to speakers (and
            >mic input for eventual SSB)? Would VAC enable me to do that? I have
            >an Audigy 4 ZS Notebook (PCMCIA card) for RF sampling, and the
            >motherboard sound card could be used for listening to receive audio.
            >I haven't messed with VAC yet. That would avoid having to plu &
            >unplug stuff between Tx and Rx.

            I think this can be done with VAC. Quite sure it cannot be done without it.


            >4. After my first QSO, I haven't had any more luck. It appears that
            >no matter where in the 48kHz band I select to listen, the transmit
            >audio is the same tone as the TUN tone. I thought it had been
            >changing frequency, but now it's not. This is verified with a scope
            >and listening on a separate rig. Both the DDS and VFO locks are
            >off. What stupid thing am I doing wrong?

            No idea on this one -- any chance the hardware configuration has changed
            and the code thinks it has an SDR 1000 attached?


            >I think that's it for now.
            >Thanks again.
            >Terry
            >WB4JFI
          • Terry
            Thank you for the very quick response. Here is what I just found out regarding tx frequency setting. If I just tune in a receive signal, the transmit audio
            Message 5 of 7 , Oct 2, 2006
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              Thank you for the very quick response.

              Here is what I just found out regarding tx frequency setting. If I
              just tune in a receive signal, the transmit audio does not change
              frequency. Probably a good thing, in tha it prevents small receive
              tuning changes to afec the transmit frequency as well. I had been
              tuning in a station on receive, then hitting MOX to respond to their
              CQ. That doesn't work, as the Tx freq is wherever you left it.

              In order to move the transmit freq to match the newly tuned-in Rx
              freq, I must first select one of the pre-canned messages to send (CWX
              page), then hit stop. Only then does the tx frequency move. Also,
              the KEY button on the CWX page does not key the transmitter, I must
              hit the MOX button of the main screen to transmit on the proper freq.

              Regarding the PTT & keyer: Under the CAT control, I have selected
              COM1 and DTR (I can change to RTS). Then, when I go to the DSP tab,
              keyer subtab, and try to select Com1 uner connections/primary, I get
              a message saying "Primary Keyer Port [COM1] could not be opened". If
              I try to select COM1 under secondary, I get a message box
              saying "Comport for keyer program could not be opened". My wish
              would be to allow the PTT and both iambic key paddle connections to
              be on the same COM port.

              I really apologize if this is normal, and I am not using the software
              right. Please take the above as being helpful, and identifying
              potential issues.

              Terry


              --- In softrock40@yahoogroups.com, Bill Tracey <kd5tfd@...> wrote:
              >
              > Comments in line below.
              >
              > At 07:40 PM 10/2/2006, Terry wrote:
              > >Bill, could you provide some guidance? Thanks in advance for
              helping
              > >with this. I am busy digesting the SDR-1000 manual, but can no
              > >longer transmit properly. Feel free to communicate directly
              > >(tfox@...) if you think this is off-topic here.
              > >
              > > I've looked through the SDR-100 manual now, and am still
              puzzled. I
              > >have gone backwards, in that I can't seem to change the transmit
              > >frequency anymore. I am using the Soft Rock exciter, not an SDR-
              1000.
              > >
              > >1. After playing a lot with the sound card controls, it appears
              that
              > >changing sound card input/output/mixer selections only affects the
              > >SDR software the next time PowerSDR is started. Is that correct,
              > >that these selections cannot happen "on the fly"?
              >
              > Don't really know. I'd think hitting the Power button on the
              console would
              > cause it to change sound devices.
              >
              >
              > >2. Is there any way to use the same COM port for both PTT out and
              > >keyer input?
              >
              > I think it should work, but I've never set it up myself so cannot
              say for
              > sure. Will try and set it up here and fix the code if it can't be
              done.
              >
              >
              > >3. Is there a way to select one sound card for the IF/RF (tx & rx
              > >audio), and a different sound card for receive audio to speakers
              (and
              > >mic input for eventual SSB)? Would VAC enable me to do that? I
              have
              > >an Audigy 4 ZS Notebook (PCMCIA card) for RF sampling, and the
              > >motherboard sound card could be used for listening to receive
              audio.
              > >I haven't messed with VAC yet. That would avoid having to plu &
              > >unplug stuff between Tx and Rx.
              >
              > I think this can be done with VAC. Quite sure it cannot be done
              without it.
              >
              >
              > >4. After my first QSO, I haven't had any more luck. It appears
              that
              > >no matter where in the 48kHz band I select to listen, the transmit
              > >audio is the same tone as the TUN tone. I thought it had been
              > >changing frequency, but now it's not. This is verified with a
              scope
              > >and listening on a separate rig. Both the DDS and VFO locks are
              > >off. What stupid thing am I doing wrong?
              >
              > No idea on this one -- any chance the hardware configuration has
              changed
              > and the code thinks it has an SDR 1000 attached?
              >
              >
              > >I think that's it for now.
              > >Thanks again.
              > >Terry
              > >WB4JFI
              >
            • Bill Tracey
              Hi Terry, No need for apologies -- you re finding glitches I need to go hunt down. The xmit frequency thing makes a bit of sense to me now. I m setting the
              Message 6 of 7 , Oct 2, 2006
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                Hi Terry,

                No need for apologies -- you're finding glitches I need to go hunt down.

                The xmit frequency thing makes a bit of sense to me now. I'm setting the
                xmit frequency in the MOX button handling code - so am somewhat confused
                why that is not working. Will have to dig into the code -- sounds like
                there's a path thru there I did not catch.

                PTT & Keyer needing to be under different COM ports -- looks like I need
                to make parts of the code aware of each other. The keyer code wants to
                open and control the port and the CAT part of the code has already done
                it. Will add it to the list of things to fix. I too would like to get
                the PTT out to the SR and keyer connections on the same comm port.

                Regards,

                Bill (kd5tfd)

                At 10:31 PM 10/2/2006, Terry wrote:
                >Thank you for the very quick response.
                >
                >Here is what I just found out regarding tx frequency setting. If I
                >just tune in a receive signal, the transmit audio does not change
                >frequency. Probably a good thing, in tha it prevents small receive
                >tuning changes to afec the transmit frequency as well. I had been
                >tuning in a station on receive, then hitting MOX to respond to their
                >CQ. That doesn't work, as the Tx freq is wherever you left it.
                >
                >In order to move the transmit freq to match the newly tuned-in Rx
                >freq, I must first select one of the pre-canned messages to send (CWX
                >page), then hit stop. Only then does the tx frequency move. Also,
                >the KEY button on the CWX page does not key the transmitter, I must
                >hit the MOX button of the main screen to transmit on the proper freq.
                >
                >Regarding the PTT & keyer: Under the CAT control, I have selected
                >COM1 and DTR (I can change to RTS). Then, when I go to the DSP tab,
                >keyer subtab, and try to select Com1 uner connections/primary, I get
                >a message saying "Primary Keyer Port [COM1] could not be opened". If
                >I try to select COM1 under secondary, I get a message box
                >saying "Comport for keyer program could not be opened". My wish
                >would be to allow the PTT and both iambic key paddle connections to
                >be on the same COM port.
                >
                >I really apologize if this is normal, and I am not using the software
                >right. Please take the above as being helpful, and identifying
                >potential issues.
                >
                >Terry
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