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Has anyone configured a Flex 6500 to work with ALE

Steven Catani
Steven Catani Member ✭✭
edited November 2022 in Third-Party Software
I am trying to configure MARS ALE to work with my 6500. I get it to work but the relays in the radio are clicking like crazy... It's not the antenna tuner as I have it shut off so I am guessing its the preselector. I have only run it for a few seconds as I don't think it can be good for the relays.

Is there a way to turn off the preselector? Say via CAT?

Once ALE locks I would like the Antenna Tuner to tune and the preselector to come back on... can this be done via CAT?

Any thoughts?



  • DH2ID
    DH2ID Member ✭✭✭
    edited October 2017
    MARS-ALE is in many ways similiar toPC-ALE , but has not been updated since 2008.
    The last PC-ALE beta update has been in 2014.


    Look at Tim's and Andrew's commentaries at the end.

    I had PC-ALE working with my Flex-6k5 and the Kenwood settings, but found that it works
    much better with my "old" ICOM IC-756pro and a microHAM DigiKeyer II.
  • Chuck - KJ6HT
    Chuck - KJ6HT Member ✭✭
    edited April 2020
    I have a commercial ALE radio now but the 6500 performed well for me with MARS-ALE. If you zoom the pan-adapter all the way out it will help minimize the relay activity as this puts the radio in "Wide" mode and minimizes pre-selector operation.  I found that using the MMI-RADIO commands will lead to much better results than using the stock Kenwood or Flex-3000/5000 pre-loaded setup. Make sure you use and understand the MMI_RADIO command scheme, this will greatly minimize the relay operation, pay special attention to QSS. QSS is short for Quiet Scan, it is acheived by a series of CAT commands that open a Slice B and set the TX flag on that slice when you start the scan. This causes the tuner to setup for the frequency chosen for slice B and stops it from operating on all of the frequencies that are being scanned on slice A. When it is time to transmit, the scanning stops, slice B is removed and the TX flag is now on slice A. The tuner immediately recalls for that channel and the radio transmits. It takes a bit more research and work but the MMI-RADIO setup is worth the time. There is a sample set of MMI-RADIO commands that are included with MARS-ALE. They happen to be for a Kenwood TS-480 so many of the commands can be used for the Flex 6XXX series. Regarding your questions,  there is no CAT control of the pre-selector that I am aware of. If you pre-tune all of the ALE frequencies and use the QSS scheme you should have great results.

  • David Salomon
    David Salomon Member ✭✭
    edited October 2018
    Chuck -

    Do you have a set of MMI files for the Flex?  I've used MARS-ALE set up as Kenwood and as Flex.  While they both work OK, I've had to fiddle with the QRG settings to ensure mode is changed correctly outside the ham bans.  Also, for reasons unknown to me, the scanning speed is very inconsistent.  Sometimes it's as fast as set in MARS-ALE, and sometimes very slow (and it's not because it's hanging on received ALE).  If the MMI files work better and more consistently, I'd love to have them as a starting point.

    73 - David, AG4F
  • Arvind Mallya
    Arvind Mallya Member ✭✭

    Well, I'm trying to configure my Flex with ION2G is there a split mode available for silent scanning? I did not see setup steps from the above discussions.

    73 Arvind-KI6MOI

  • John WA7UAR
    John WA7UAR Member ✭✭✭

    @Arvind Mallya — I use ion2g with my 6700. There is no split mode that I am aware of. Only the mars-ale program from the developer was last updated to hold a TX slice A on 2MHz while it scans RX slice B. If you find anything different then please let me know. Cheers!

  • Andrew O'Brien
    Andrew O'Brien Member ✭✭✭

    Perhaps edit the code plug and create a custom code plug that disengages the TX in Smartsdr while scanning? Silent scans with Kenwoods worked that way in days of old. The clicking relays were due to bandpass filters that were disengaged if not planning to transmit . I am not sure if a Flex gets the bandpass filters disengaged when in GEN mode or not.

    Andy K3UK

  • John WA7UAR
    John WA7UAR Member ✭✭✭

    Update to my November 2022 comment: ION2G now supports split mode on the Flex platform. It will hold the last transmitted frequency on an independent slice (B, for example) while it scans using another slice (A, for example). Both ION2G and MARS-ALE support split mode on Flex.

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