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SmartSDR for the Mac - can you help?

Doug - K3TZR
Doug - K3TZR Member
edited April 2020 in New Ideas
As a Flex-6500 owner and a Apple Mac user I have been disappointed that there is no SmartSDR version for the Mac. I’ve read with interest many of the discussions on this community surrounding the topic of multi-platform support. I have to say that I agree with the position taken by FRS; maintaining multiple versions is a nightmare and not an economically feasible option for FRS. Under the weight of that reality, I own one Windows 10 computer (in addition to a number of Macs) solely to run SmartSDR.

Not withstanding that, I’ve spent the last year working on Mac-native FlexAPI and SmartSDR equivalents.

FlexAPI isn’t too difficult. Stu Phillips (K6TU) did the Flex/Mac community a great service by producing and publishing his smartsdr-objective-c library. It was my first introduction to the inner workings of my Flex radio and I wouldn’t be where I am today without it. FRS itself publishes the C# / .Net source code for their Windows-based FlexAPI. Anyone with a copy of Visual Studio can peruse that code and learn a great deal about the underpinnings of SmartSDR. Based upon the FRS C# code and Stu’s Objective-C code I’ve written an OS X Swift Framework which provides functionality equivalent to FlexAPI but running on a Mac.

SmartSDR is a much larger undertaking. Unfortunately (but perhaps for good business reasons) the source code for SmartSDR is not published. I’m not really interested in duplicating SmartSDR, what I set out to do was prove to myself that my API implementation was capable of supporting a fully functional Flex Client. I’ve mostly done that at this point. I’m hoping that others might be interested in using my API framework to create “Flex stuff” for those of us who prefer the Mac.

After a year of learning and coding, I’ve come to the conclusion that a Mac-native Flex Client is beyond the reach of a single developer. After all, FRS has multiple developers who have worked for years to build their SmartSDR Client. It’s also a moving target with new versions appearing regularly. At the rate I’m progressing there will probably be a Flex-7000 before I’m finished!

I would like to find a few like-minded software developers to work with me to create a Mac-native Flex Client, I have a good start at it but I can’t do it alone. Those interested would need to have experience in (or a serious desire to learn) Swift, Cocoa, OpenGL, etc. and be willing to work in a collaborative approach. In some ways, the collaboration needed to make this work can be more difficult than the code.

Just to be clear, I have no interest in producing a commercial product for sale. Anything that comes out of this work will be available at no cost to anyone who wants to use it. If you are interested and think you can contribute, please let me know off the community by email (douglas.adams@me.com).

I will be at Hamvention next week, email me if you’d like to have an eyeball QSO in Dayton.

73’s Doug


  • Reggie-k6xr
    Reggie-k6xr Member ✭✭
    edited April 2020
    I use DPSDR on my Mac natively. Have you tried it? Dogparksoftware. It  works well for me on Mac-mini and macbook Air.
  • Burch - K4QXX
    Burch - K4QXX Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    Another vote for DogparkSDR.  It works very well and the author continues to add features.  You can download it and use it for free (it runs 15 minutes full featured without purchase).
  • Stan Hirson
    Stan Hirson Member
    edited May 2016
    I use DogparkSDR from time to time on my Macbook Pro with no problems. Don is fast on the updates and very good on communicating with users. http://dogparksoftware.com/dogparkSDR.html

    Stan Hirson, W2VID 
  • Reggie-k6xr
    Reggie-k6xr Member ✭✭
    edited April 2020
    I might mention that MacLoggerDX by DogParkSoftware works well with dx spots displayed right on the Panadapter in DPSDR! A great feature indeed!

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