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Using CommCat for CW with FlexRadios

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  • Using CommCat for CW with FlexRadios

    The intention of this document is to help those who want to use the CW keying mode in CommCat with their FlexRadio transceivers.

    This document makes some general assumptions.
    1. PowerSDR is already operational.
    2. Virtual serial port pairs have already been setup for CAT and PTT controls

    Program that will be mentioned in this document:
    1. PowerSDR
    2. DDUtil
    3. VSPMgr
    4. CommCat
    5. VAC

    Setup Virtual Serial ports:

    In order to try and cut down on the confusion I will use the following :
    A1 - A2 comm port pair
    B1 - B2 comm port pair
    C1 - C2 comm port pair

    Step ONE
    1. Using VSPMgr (or other virtual serial port software) setup 2 additional com port pair.

    Make a list of what you setup
    **** These are the ones I used, fill in yours *****
    A1 - _6__ Fill in the number you selected.
    A2 - _16__ Fill in the number you selected.

    B1 - _7__ Fill in the number you selected.
    B2 - _17__ Fill in the number you selected.

    C1 - _15__ Fill in the number you selected.
    C2 - _25__ Fill in the number you selected.

    D1 - _10__ Fill in the number you selected.
    D2 - _20__ Fill in the number you selected.
    2. Close the program.
    3. Optional - after I setup a comport pair I usually restart the computer.
    I do this so that I know the new ports are not in memory.

    Step TWO.

    1. With your radio turned on.
    2. Start PowerSDR.
    3. Click on "Setup" in PowerSDR.
    4. Click on the "CAT Control" tab.
    5. Under "Cat Control" record the "Cat Control" com port used in position A2
    above.
    6. Under "PTT Control" record the "Port" used in position B2 above.
    7. Click on the "DSP" tab
    8. Click on the "Keyer" tab
    9. Under "Connections" change the "Secondary" port to the one specified in C2
    above.
    10. Under "PTT Line" select "RTS"
    11. Under "Key Line" select "DTR".
    12. Click on "Apply" button at the bottom.
    13. Click on "Ok" button at the bottom.
    14. This completes the setup for PowerSDR
    15. Close the program for now.
    Your list should not look like this:
    A1 - _6__ Fill in the number you selected.
    A2 - _16__ PowerSDR CAT control com port.

    B1 - _7__ Fill in the number you selected.
    B2 - _17__ PowerSDR PTT control com port.

    C1 - _15__ Fill in the number you selected.
    C2 - _25__ Secondary com Port

    D1 - _10__
    D2 - _20__

    16. Close PowerSDR for now.


    Step Three

    1. Open up the DDUtil program
    2. Click on the "Ports" tab.
    3. If it is not already selected open up the "Radio CAT" pull down menu and
    select the comport A1 from above. If it is already selected then just check
    that the number in A1 is correct.
    4. Click on the "RCP" tab
    5. Click on the "RCP5" pull down menu.
    6. Select the comport from D2 above.
    7. Close DDUtil for now
    Your list should not look like this:
    A1 - _6__ DDUtil Radio Cat port
    A2 - _16__ PowerSDR CAT control com port.

    B1 - _7__ Fill in the number you selected.
    B2 - _17__ PowerSDR PTT control com port.

    C1 - _15__ Fill in the number you selected.
    C2 - _25__ Secondary com Port

    D1 - _10__
    D2 - _20__ DDUtil RCP5 com port

    Step Four.

    1. Open up CommCat
    2. Click on "Files", "Settings", "Radio/Ant"
    A window for "Radio and Antenna Settings" will open
    3. Expand "Radio A" if not already expanded.
    4. Highlight "Radio"
    5. In the window on the right under "Manufacture" highlight "FlexRadio"
    6. In the window on the right under "Model" highlight "PowerSDR"
    7. Highlight "Port" under "Radio A"
    8. Under "Radio A Port" open the "Port" pull down menu and select Port D1
    from above.
    9. Under "Radio A Port" highlight "CW"
    10. In the window to the right under "Radio A CW", "Port" pull down menu
    and select Port C1 from above.
    11. In the window to the right select "DTR" by clicking on the white circle.
    12. Under "Radio A Port" highlight "PTT"
    13. In the windows to the right under "Radio A PTT", select "ViaRTS" by clicking
    on the white circle.
    14. In the window to the right under "Radio A PTT", open the upll down menu
    next to "RTS/DTR Port"
    15. Select the Port B1 from above.
    16. Click on "OK" to close the window.
    17. This completes the setup of CommCat, so close the program for now.
    Your list should not look like this:
    A1 - _6__ DDUtil Radio Cat port
    A2 - _16__ PowerSDR CAT control com port.

    B1 - _7__ CommCat PTT port
    B2 - _17__ PowerSDR PTT control com port.

    C1 - _15__ CommCat CW port
    C2 - _25__ Secondary com Port

    D1 - _10__ CommCat Radio A Port
    D2 - _20__ DDUtil RCP5 com port

    Step Five
    This completes the setup.
    You may want to restart your computer. Sometimes I do this just to make sure
    all the com ports are clear.

    Step Six.
    1. Start VAC (virtual audio cable) program
    2. Start DDUtil (Data Decoder Utility) program
    3. Start PowerSDR
    4. CommCat.
    5. Select a proper frequency for CW.
    6. Select CW in PowerSDR (not digital)
    7. Change your Drive to zero in PowerSDR or use a dummy load.
    8. Open up the CW option in CommCat
    9. Try transmitting something using the cw mode in CommCat.
    10. If you don't see anything make sure your "Mon" switch in PowerSDR is on
    and that your speaker volume is up.
    11. If nothing is being transmitted review this procedure.

    This procedure is written using DDUtil because so many hams use DDUtil to control many things. If you do not use DDUtil take out the
    references to it and only use 3 serial ports. This will allow you to still use CommCat for CW if you like.

    This was written on Dec. 6, 2011
    by Don, kd6hq kd6hq@sonic.net
    CommCat can be reached at http://commcat.com/
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