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IC-7600 and PGXL

MarkMark Member
edited November 2019 in Third-Party Software
Has anyone successfully interfaced an IC-7600 to a PGXL?

I had the 7600 interfaced to my Ameritron 1306 using the Band Data from the ACC2 connector (a voltage output from 0 to 8v on pin 4 based on the band). Looking at the documentation for the PGXL I don't see where that will work.

If so, how did you do it?

The amplifier is working great interfaced to my 6700 over the LAN.  I would really like to have the 7600 connect to the B side of the amp inputs.

Thank you & 73,

Mark
N4EOC

Answers

  • K1DLMK1DLM Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    I woiuld use the Icom CI-V interface to communicate between the radio and the Amp.  Just use a 1/8" Stereo Cable (male to male), and connect to CI-V input B on the Amp.  73, Dave, K1DLM
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Thank you for your reply David.

    Doooh!

    I've been using the Remote jack exclusively for radio programming/radio control from other software for so long I completely forgot it had a second purpose.

    Thanks for the smack upside the head...!!  :-

    73,
    Mark
    N4EOC
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Well, I've spent the last hour or so trying to get the PGXL to recognize the CI-V data from the radio.  So far no significant luck.

    I've tried configuring the PGXL for the IC-7000, and adjusted the address in the 7600 to 70h which is the default address for the 7000, used every data rate from 1200 through 9600, and 4 different stop bits (8n1, 8n2, and 8O2 and 8E2) (PGXL seems to like the 2 stop bits).  No combination has worked yet.  I've also tried the same thing with the PGXL configured for the IC-7800 with address of 6Ah, the default for the 7800.  Also with no luck.

    So far all I've been able to accomplish is to sometimes have the PGXL front panel show a band, and the CAT nomenclature.  Changing bands does not configure the PGXL to the proper band no matter what I've tried.

    Perhaps there is a secret combination to all these parameters that I haven't found yet.  I'll try again in the morning.

    I did discover that the 'SEND Relay Type' in the 7600 had to be set to 'MOS-FET' in order to key the PGXL, so that was progress.


  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    Well it supposedly works. Now I’m curious so I may actually have to try one of my icom radios. In a pinch you can use manual mode.
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Thank you Ria!  I appreciate all assistance!

    I don't see a reference in the User Manual to a 'manual mode'...?

    By watching the front panel display I can see that the PGXL is receiving some kind of signal from the 7600 because the digits to the right of the 'CAT' displayed there change, if only momentarily, when I change bands on the 7600.  

    Periodically, without any input from me on the 7600, the band displayed will briefly go to 'N/A' or to another band number, and then back to displaying the previous band number.
  • W9WLX_ChuckW9WLX_Chuck Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    If you're using a  1/8" Stereo Cable, that may not work.  The Icom CI-V cable is TRS (stereo) on one end, but tip/shield (mono) on the other.  The mono end is used on the radio side.  Using TRS to TRS may be causing a short.
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Thank you Chuck,

    I'll run down to Radio Shack - oh, wait - hmm, well someplace and get a couple of connectors so that I can make up a cable as you describe and try that.  Or an adapter for the radio end.

    73,
    Mark
  • W9WLX_ChuckW9WLX_Chuck Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    Tip and ring on the TRS side goes to tip on mono side, shield to shield.
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    I second the mono cable. I’m guessing that configuring it in PGXL utility was done already. Manual mode is accessed by touching the front screen and then you can select a band. It’s not super obvious. Ria
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Hi Ria,

    It appears that the released firmware 3.1.2 that is in this PGXL does not support manual mode.  Touching the screen does nothing.

  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    I have seen this in earlier firmwares. Try touching the radio name itself like the little rectangle. I have an alpha release on mine but I’m pretty sure it’s been there for a while.
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    No joy Ria.  Must be a Alpha thing... Is the radio name is just the 'CAT' in this case since it's not a Flex, or the digits in green to the right of that which might represent the operating frequency?

    Thanks again!  I'm still searching for a mono plug, or an adapter from a mono plug to a stereo jack.

  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Hi Chuck,

    This is interesting, because the programming interface that I've been using has a stereo plug that goes into the radio.  I would have thought that a stereo plug would have worked to take the CI-V signal 'out' of that jack as well.  I'm still poking around in my shack to see if I can create the cable you spec'd.
  • Chris Tate  - N6WMChris Tate - N6WM Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    mark.. out of curiosity have you tried using an all cabled scenario?  like an rca tx from the flex rather than lan on the a side along with the icom on the b side?  . 
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Hi Chris,

    Not entirely sure what you mean, but no, I have not tried using an RCA TX from the Flex.  The LAN connection is working fine.

    It looks like the PGXL knows that there is a CI-V/CAT connection on the B side but it just isn't interpreting the input correctly. (the B entries show a band {20 in most cases}, the blue AB, CAT, and a series of digits after that (14.400.000 in this case).  Even when I change the 7600 to another band (say 80m for example) the B display will blink but then come back to where it had been.

    73,
    Mark
  • Chris Tate  - N6WMChris Tate - N6WM Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    I am curious if it works with the flex taken out of the formula.  just see if you can get the CI-V working without the flex in the picture.  thats what I am curious about.
  • Chris Tate  - N6WMChris Tate - N6WM Member ✭✭
    edited May 2019
    the fact that it shows up for a second, but then dissapears and stops working is what has me wondering if the flex telemetry is somehow overiding it.
  • Chuck - W9WLXChuck - W9WLX Member
    edited May 2019
    I found it seems to be some jacks work and some don’t. Must just be slightly different tolerance. I ran into this when I upgraded from a Rigblaster Pro to a Rigblaster Advantage a while back with Icom gear. Pro worked but Advantage needed the CI-V cable.
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Hi Chuck.

    I have a 'cable' that has a mono plug on one end and is unterminated at the other.  I'm going to solder a stereo plug on that end with the tip and ring sharing the same wire that goes to the tip on the mono plug.  Wish me luck!  Thanks again!

  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Here is the latest,

    I obtained a couple of adapters to take the stereo to stereo (TRS to TRS) cable that I have to mono plugs.  I put one on the 7600 end and it had no observable effect.  I added one to the PGXL end and it lost the 'CAT' nomenclature on the front panel.

    I then restored both ends of the cable to the stereo plug.

    I tried changing the Stop bits in the PGXL setup to 8n1 (while leaving the address in the 7600 set to 70h which is the default address for the IC-7000) and that makes the green band display go to N/A.  So I restored that to 8n2.

     I then turned off the Flex radio.  That does not seem to have any effect either.

    When I change bands on the 7600 I can sometimes see the digits to the right of the 'CAT' display change briefly.  What are those digits supposed to represent please?  Are they supposed to be the band segment in the PGXL that corresponds to the band and frequency selected on the 7600?? Or what??  Flex has left an AWFUL lot out of the User Guide in my honest opinion...

    I went so far as to shut down the PGXL utility, and unplugged the CAT-6 cable from the rear.  No difference in the behavior.

    It really is starting to look like FLEX does not want anyone to use any other exciter besides a Flex radio with this amp.... :-(

    I do appreciate the suggestions.  I will keep trying to troubleshoot the problem.

    73,
    Mark

  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Hi Chris,

    Turning the Flex 6700 off didn't seem to make a difference.  Neither did disconnecting the Cat-6 cable.

  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    No, no good.  I confirmed that the tip/ring on the TRS end went to the tip on the mono end, and the shield went to shield.  Plugged the TRS end into the PGXL and the mono end into the 7600 (per your other response) and the PGXL said "NO!". As in lost any indication that it was seeing a CAT/CI-V connection any more.
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Ria,

    P.S. - yes I am configuring it in the PGXL utility as I go. Each time I make a change to anything on the 7600 radio side especially.  I'm picking the IC-7000 item in the PGXL utility for the B side of the CAT/CI-V tab.

    For reference, here are the settings in the IC-7600 "Others" setting menu that have anything to do with CI-V as far as I can tell:

    CI-V Baud Rate: 4800 (although I've tried up to 9600 as well on each end)
    CI-V Address: 70h (matching the IC-7000 default address)
    CI-V Transceive: On  (I've tried off and then the PGXL loses the 'CAT')
    CI-V Output (for ANT): On  (I've tried off as well - made no difference as I remember)
    USB Serial Function:  CI-V  (not sure this has anything to do with it)
    Decode Baud Rate: 4800  (again, tried 9600 also; doubt it has any relavence)

    Thanks & 73,
    Mark
  • MarkMark Member
    edited May 2019
    Ok Ria,

    Some progress - as far as the Manual mode goes.

    My friend just suggested that I unplug the CI-V cable and try pushing on the front panel.  That worked!  Appears that while the cable was plugged in the amp thought it was getting band info that way and refused to go into manual mode.

    So I can at least select a band by hand at this point.

    Of course, it would be super if I can get it to work automatically.... ;-)

    73,
    Mark
  • edited May 2019
    This is a bug and a regression.  I've reopened issue #35 to reflect the non-working status.  Thank you for the work and report.  

    Best,
    Dan

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