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4o3a Antenna Genius ? or Hamation 8 pack

Rich McCabeRich McCabe Member ✭✭
edited December 2019 in FLEX-6000 Signature Series
I have recently switched to using W1TRs excellent HF-Auto software and am finally happy with the HF-Auto after a few years of frustration with it on 160 meters.

I am running a Hamation 2x8 switch so I can basically set either SCU to whatever antenna I desire. I gave up on automatic control of the switch because of the ShackLAN system but I am sure there is a way to do it.

Now that I have the HF-AUTO software running and its bypassing the tuner based on frequency if needed I would really like the have the antenna switch working too.

I really hate to sell the EightPak which works great to buy the 4o3a switch unless I have to.

So looking for ideas on making the switch I bought from Array Solutions work. If that is not going to work I would like input from those with the Antenna Genius. 

Like if you can easily switch to antenna to an alternate antenna from the one you have set for a given band.

Basically I would like each slice to switch to the correct antenna which is usually 1 of 2 antennas but depending on conditions/distance a third antenna might be an alternate so toggle that with software??

I assume that the Flex 4o3a setup is not smart enough to enable/disable FDX where appropriate?

73,

Rich
kd0zv

Answers

  • Steve K9ZWSteve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Hey Rich, perhaps ask the Hamation folks? I don’t think they directly support SmartSDR/Flex-6000 but they have a lot of possibilities to explore. 73 Steve K9ZW Blog: http://k9zw.wordpress.com
  • Rich McCabeRich McCabe Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Steve, I have contacted Array Solutions  to see what they can be provide for direction. In the past Hamation has been zero help so I avoid them if possible. And unfortunately their website is of little value and the documentation way behind so no luck there!

  • Rich McCabeRich McCabe Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Looks like there is no way to really make the Hamation stuff work the way I want after talking to them. My current 2 x 8 works good but is a manual switching setup. You would think anyone running a dual SCO flex would want the ability to put any antenna on either SCU and this would be a common request.

    I need to read the Antenna Genius manual as I am not getting clear feedback from them either.
  • Joel N9LQJoel N9LQ Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Hi Rich, I have a Flex 6600, and the 4O3A 2x8 switch. Yes, you can set up more than one antenna for each band. The Antenna Genius app allows you to setup which antenna is allowed for each band and is easy to configure. If you have more than one antenna configured for a given band, when you switch to that band, it switches to the last antenna you had selected for that band. It is then easy to manually change between the allowed antennas by clicking on the app running on your PC. And I have a dummy load on one of the antenna ports that can be selected for any band. I have my antenna switch simply connected to the local network by an Ethernet cable, and the radio band data is sent to the switch over the Ethernet. For example, when I switch the radio band from 40m to 20m, the switch immediately and automatically changes from my dipole to my Yagi. You could also choose to use digital lines, or BCD lines to control the switch instead of the Ethernet approach. I am happy with mine, and run SO2R at 1.5KW.
  • Rich McCabeRich McCabe Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Thanks Joel,  best info I have got.

    Jay from Array Solutions emailed me and said it they think it might work and told me to try a SM8.

    The 403A is a more elegant solution and much more flexible.  I wish there was something that would change the slice from Ant1 to Ant2 automatically along with all this stuff :)

    I like the other options for controlling the AG.  The Hamation stuff is proprietary shacklan which I dont like.
     

  • Joel N9LQJoel N9LQ Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    Glad it helped a little. For what it’s worth, I wrote a program that allows antenna toggling without having to click on the AG app. The purpose was during a contest, to allow toggling between two or more antennas for the same band (slice) from within N1MM without having to do a mouse movement. In N1MM, you can configure the antennas as needed, and then Alt-F9 will toggle through them. So the program listens for the N1MM UDP broadcasts, and then sends them out as TCP commands to the AG switch. It seems to work well, and I can keep my hands on the keyboard and switch between my two 40m dipoles in a split second.

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