Author Topic: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit  (Read 361 times)

K1IKE-Joe

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TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« on: 2019-04-13, 14:58:19 »
Hello to All,

I decided to try an experiment with FT8.  I configured COM2 so that I have CAT control at the console unit.  I verified that it works by running the Kenwood ARCP software and it works fine.  I then ran the WSJT software and had some success.  The WSJT software can control the TS480, but an error comes up.  I'm still working on that problem.  PTT via CAT is not working, another problem.

The biggest problem that I have is that any brief Internet interruptions causes the decoder not to work.  I'm taking audio off the RemoteRig SP (speaker) jack and feeding it into the sound card mike jack of the laptop.

I'm beginning to think that the best way to run FT8 with RemoteRig is to have a computer at the remote site where the radio is.  This way there is no interruption of the audio stream.

Any ideas?  Anyone running FT8 remotely?

73, Joe, K1ike

dj0qn

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #1 on: 2019-04-13, 17:16:26 »
Hi Joe,

I know of quite a number of people running FT8 remotely on the control side without a problem. You can run
a computer on the radio side and use for example Teamviewer for control, but that should not be necessary.

What is the problem with PTT over CAT? It works for everyone I know. Is WJST getting the frequency from
CAT ok? If so, PTT should work. A tip could be to use a real serial cable instead of USB for COM2 on the
RRC, since sometimes the RRC's USB converter is unstable.

Try increasing your buffers to help get around the internet problem. That certainly would prevent it from
working correctly, as it would interrupt any QSO.

73,
Mitch DJ0QN / K7DX

K1IKE-Joe

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #2 on: 2019-04-14, 02:56:02 »
Hi Mitch,

I think I will eventually get FT8 work.  I have COM2 at the site looped back to COM1 at the site in order to connect an ALS600 PA for band switching control.  Then I have COM2 at the control end programmed for CAT control in order to connect the laptop to the control unit so that I can run WSJT FT8 software.  The WSJT software CAT control test is working, but not PTT test.  WSJT can control the radio and switch bands, but it gives an error.

I need to spend some more time and work things out.  The Internet latency seems to be the biggest problem now.  I'l try increasing the buffer size.

Thanks, Joe, K1ike

K1IKE-Joe

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #3 on: 2019-04-14, 16:01:14 »
Hello again Mitch,

I reloaded all the radio setting from scratch and now the CAT and PTT is working just fine.  I don't see any difference in what I had set, but it is working now.  My buffers are set as follows:
RX jitter buffer=4
RX jitter delay=3
Audit packet size=40

Any suggestions on the settings?

Joe, K1ike


dj0qn

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #4 on: 2019-04-14, 18:42:31 »
Hi Joe,

To ensure a consistent audio stream on digital modes, I suggest increasing the buffer to 12
and delay to 10 on both sides. You may also try another trick in changing RTP to "continuous"
to maintain a solid connection. This increases the data volume and causes problems with some
microphones, but will prevent a drop in the audio and CAT stream.

73,
Mitch DJ0QN / K7DX

VE3VEE

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #5 on: 2019-04-17, 13:29:01 »
Hi Joe,

Quote
The biggest problem that I have is that any brief Internet interruptions causes the decoder not to work.

I feel your pain. I've been there. I've done a lot of FT8 on TS-480 via RemoteRig. When the Internet is not good enough, and when the above suggestions by Mitch don't help, the only solution is to get a better ISP. After 4 years of struggling with my not-so-good Internet from my local WISP, I switched to 4G/LTE from a mobile Internet provider. Very seldom I now experience any audio interruptions on RX or TX. It's more expensive though.

Marvin VE3VEE

K1IKE-Joe

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #6 on: 2019-04-21, 14:20:15 »
Hello Mitch,

Setting RTP to continuous would most likely solve the Mic audio problem, but it would add additional data to the cell service we sometimes use.  I have opted to not use CAT PTT and use the DTR option in WSJT-X to key the radio.  This is working just fine.  As noted in the RCc manual, RTP continuous can also cause security issues.  The system is used mostly for SSB operation and I would rather not keep the mike active all the time.

RTP explains why I was not able to pass audio.  Evidently, PTT at the mic connector needs to be active in order for the control RCC to pass Mic audio.

Thanks for the tip.  Joe K1ike

K1IKE-Joe

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Re: TS480 and FT8 operation at the console unit
« Reply #7 on: 2019-04-30, 13:54:00 »
I finally got FT8 working well while at the console end of the connection. Adjusting the Delay and Jitter settings fixed the audio problems 99.9% of the time. The mike audio problem was solved by using PTT at the RRC console end so that Mic audio would pass from the console to the radio RRC units. I found the easiest "out of the box" solution was to use a SignaLink USB unit and configure it to use the VOX option in the SignaLink. (Not the VOX option in the TS480).

Mitch, thanks for the help. FT8 has to be the most fascinating modes I've operated in a while.  Boring, yes.  Addictive, Yes.

73, Joe, K1ike