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Unable to get both VFOa and VFOb on Log4OM with OmniRig... help!

EA4GLIEA4GLI SalvadorMember ✭✭
edited November 2019 in SmartSDR for Windows
I am mainly working satellites the last few months, as propagation in HF is awful in my neck of the woods.
For HF I have been OK with LOG4OM and OmniRig. There are little issues but it's ok.

However,working satellites is a whole different animal! I cannot get LOG4OM with OmniRig to read both VFOa and VFOb. I can set RIG1 to VFOa and RIG2 to VFOb but I have no way of having a single RIG with 2 VFOs. Therefore all my Sat QSOs are incorrectly recorded as the TX and RX frequencies never match.

DXLab can read VFOa and VFOb but doesn't even have the Option to input GRIDSquare in the Log QSO window! Plus you have to click on LOG for each new contact. Whomever design DXLab tried to cram too much info in the Log QSO window and missed some basic stuff that should be there.

I am very frustrated. There isn't a single logging program that will manage the different VFOs from the Flexradio and trying anything slightly complex is very difficult. Any ideas?
Has anyone figured out how to have at least 2 VFOs with OmniRig? it used to work pre v1.6.....

Answers

  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Besides DXLabs, is there a log program that will connect by TCP to SmartSDR CAT?
  • Milen KG2CMilen KG2C Member
    edited January 2018
    This doesn't seem to be a limitation in Log4OM with Omnirig itself as it is capable of reading a radio with two VFOs. Here's my IC7100 (with my own customized config file) as an example on 2m and 70cm:
    image

    If you go to C:Program Files (x86)AfreetOmniRigRigs you will see the different configurations for radios.
    For the SmartSDR profile it says:
    SmartSDR command set modified 12Dec14 by W4TME from
    PowerSDR command set
    File created by Alex Shovkoplyas, VE3NEA [email protected]
    So maybe Tim would be able to help you modify it to suit your needs. One way or the other I'm guessing the fix would be in modifying this file. One thing to note is that Flex radios don't seem to like following the VFO A and VFO B convention that traditional radios  follow, with all the Split and similar commands. This was explained somewhere and some good reasons were given but I don't remember where that was. Anyway it is evident in the configuration file:
    [pmFreq]
    ;operating frequency
    ;not supported

    [pmSplitOn]
    ;split on
    ;not supported

    [pmSplitOff]
    ;split off
    ;not supported

    [pmVfoA]
    ;not supported

    [pmVfoB]
    ;not supported

    [pmVfoEqual]
    ;not supported

    [pmVfoSwap]
    ;not supported
  • Paul W5PFPaul W5PF Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    I have not tried to use 2 vfos with DXLabs, but DX Keeper definitely logs grid squares. The capture window will take one grid. With the main Log QSOs window of DX Keeper you can log up to 4 grids if you have the Awards window open.

    73,
    Paul W5PF
  • Milen KG2CMilen KG2C Member
    edited July 2018
    Paul is right. Here's the grid field in the Capture window after I've clicked the Lookup button with my callsign in the Call field:
    image
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    Thanks for all the replies. I'll look into the log qso window to see how to get the grid square to display in dxlabs.
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    My smartsdr.ini file for omnirig has some language referencing vfob, it is also modified by Tim. But it doesn't work. If it did it would be great because omnirig is used by many loggers.
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Finally found it. Is under the "award" tab, go figure!.

    image

    Seeing that you have experience with this logger. I have other questions.

    If I am in the SpotCollector and I double click on a spot I get all the info in the DXView, however, the callsign does not appear on the LogQSO window in DXKeeper and I have to manually input the callsign.

    Is there a way to click on a Spot and automatically have the Log filled out so all I have to do is record the QSO?

    Also, is there a shortcut to LOG the QSO? Tab or Enter just moves through the fields in the Log QSO window. I have to move the mouse away from the SmartSDR screen and go to the Log button to log the contact.

    Furthermore, how do I do it so when I log a contact it clears the Log entry screen so I do not have to hit NEW with the mouse?

    Thanks in advance!

  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Here is the SmartSDR.ini I am referring to. Dated 11/jan/2016.

    image

    It really feels like SmartSDR CAT does not send VFOa and VFOb in one CAT connection.

    Maybe Tim can chime in?

  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Some more data.
    If I create an extra slice besides Slice A, and then send the ZZFB; command in the TEST field of the Log feature of the SmartSDR CAT I get a ?; response.

    However, if I use a third party program, like HamPort http://www.dxsoft.com/en/products/hamport/
    image

    And I click on VFO A/A to select VFO A/B something interesting happens.

    First it creates an extra slice. If I only have Slice A it will create a Slice B. If I have a slice B already it will create a Slice C.

    Second, SmartSDR CAT recognizes the extra slice.

    image

    And now, when I send the ZZFB; command in the Log window of SmartSDR CAT I get a response!

    image

    Third, Log4OM NOW reads the second VFO!!
    image

    However, any changes initiated from SmartSDR will not reflect in OmniRig.
    If I close the slice or open it or change TX from one to the other NONE of that gets sent to OmniRig.

    Maybe there is something here. Please take a look Tim, you are the OmniRig expert!
  • Nuno LopesNuno Lopes Member
    edited July 2018

    Salvador, if you've some question about DXLab or some problem about configuring it for the Flex, I suggest that you join the DXLab yahoo group, Dave (AA6YQ) the author of DXLab suite will replay to all of your questions and point you in the right direction.

    In any case I just send him an email pointing him to this topic, so let's see if he stop by here to help you.  

  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Thanks Nuno. I will check it out. I probably need to spend more time with it to familiarize myself with all the features.
  • Nuno LopesNuno Lopes Member
    edited November 2017

    Yes Salvador, DXLab has some learning curve, but once setup you'll be a happy camper.

    Nuno

    CT2IRY

  • Milen KG2CMilen KG2C Member
    edited November 2017
    I think you might like the Capture window more for your preferred style of entering QSOs. That's also what I usually used when this was my primary logger.
    You can access it by pressing the Capture button that is just above the grid with logged QSO.

    Regarding filling the data from SpotCollector, here's a screenshot of what happens when I double-click on the J69Z spot.
    It populates the Capture Window with the mode, frequency, grid, name, IOTA etc info.
    Second, it has the same info in the DXKeeper window in case you want to log from there.
    Third, it filters your QSOs to show all previous QSOs with that station.
    Fourth it shows that station in DXView with the relevant information.
    Fifth, DXCommander sets my radio to the correct frequency and mode  from the spot.
    If you wanted to log him all you would need to do is press the Log button.
    image
  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Note that grid2, grid 3, and grid4 are all available in the Capture window when appropriately expanded. This enables you record two grid squares for QSOs on grid boundaries, and three or four grid squares for QSOs on grid intersections -- as required for VUCC.

  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    1. DXKeeper can record up to 119 items in each QSO, grouped into 9 panels. A directory showing which items are available in each panel is here:
    http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxkeeper/Help/Items.htm

    2. To populate DXKeeper's Capture window with information from a Spot Database Entry, double-click the Entry. This will also QSY your radio to the correct frequency, mode, and (if appropriate) split frequency. See http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/CollectingSpots

    3. Use the Capture window when logging QSOs in real time. See
    http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/QSOCapture

    4. Before going any further, please review http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/GettingStarted

    5. Consider joining the DXLab Yahoo Group:
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/dxlab/conversations/messages



  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Many thanks for the "heads up", Nuno!

    Salvadore, I've provided you with some relevant documentation links above. The two most important suggestions are:

    1. join the DXLab Yahoo Group: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/dxlab/conversations/messages

    2. take a look at http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/GettingStarted

         73,

                 Dave, AA6YQ
  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Up to four grid squares can be logged via the Capture window, if vertically expanded.
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    This is very useful.
    How can I add the specific SAT?
    Having SAT Name and SAT Mode in the DXKeeper Capture would be nice. Is that possible through any config setting?
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    I am aware that it is in the Log QSO Window once I select Propagation.
    Haven't found it on DXKeeper Capture.

    Thanks for taking the time to explain this!
  • Nuno LopesNuno Lopes Member
    edited November 2017
    Salvador, from the DXLab wiki < http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxkeeper/Help/LogNewCapture.htm >, you can read that the SAT function is not present at the moment in the Capture window, quoting the wiki: " While DXKeeper can log a receive frequency (distinct from a transmit frequency) for each QSO, the Capture window does not provide a means of recording this information. For cross-band QSOs -- Satellite QSOs, for example -- use the Main window for logging.

    The Main window has more items to fill, if you want to make your QSO more complete with some additional info.
  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    To log Satellite QSOs via the Capture window, first select the Configuration window's Defaults tab and

    1. set the "Propagation mode" selector to SAT

    2. set the "Satellite name" selector to the satellite you'll be using

    3. set the "Satellite mode" selector to the satellite mode you'll be using

    Now all QSOs logged via the Capture window will record the above propagation mode, satellite name, and satellite mode. Be sure to reset the items of the Defaults tab when you return to logging terrestrial QSOs.
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Hi Dave,

    When you mention Configuration window you are referring to this one, right?

    image

    I find this very cumbersome. I have to go in every time and move thru the drop down menus.

    I will give you an example:

    In the next few minutes these sats will be flying over within range of my station

    image

    As you can see 4 of them will overlap in time, so I can switch between them.
    At 2 degrees XW-2B will give me a small window of opportunity for a far away contact.
    SO-50 will be a "long" pass at 14 minutes.  All of them are AOS from North/Northwest, so very little movement of my antennas will give me a chance to work several of them.

    The very cool thing with the Flex 6700 is that I can have 8 slices all open listening to all 4 SATs that will be in my vicinity with their corresponding UPlink frequencies.

    Your logger does a beautiful job at reading the VFOs frequencies from TCP, no other logger that I have tried does that, and I applaud you for enabling this feature.

    But, it is very difficult to actually log any of my activity in these passes with DXLabs.

    Ideally I would need to have several DXKeeper Capture windows (HRD does this) open at the same time to allow me to log different QSOs.

    It would also be ideal to have each DXKeeper Capture window give the option to change the  Propagation Mode to SAT and the SAT Name, info needed to validate with LOTW.

    Again, thank you so much for taking the time to post here. I will keep trying find the logger that better meets my operating style and circumstances. And I will lurk in the yahoo forum to find more info.







  • Dave AA6YQDave AA6YQ amateur radio software developer (DXLab) Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    If you want to switch satellites at each QSO (rather than a make several QSOs with the same satellite), then use the Main window's "Log QSOs" tab with "Optimize for real-time QSO entry" enabled. The Propagation panel gives you direct access to Satellite Name and Mode selectors. Enabling "Run mode" will further increase the speed at which you can log QSOs. 

    Each of the options mentioned above is described in the documentation.
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    I will try those options and report back.
  • Tim - W4TMETim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited November 2017
    Correct.  OmniRig is designed for radios that have a main VFO (A) and a secondary VFO (B).  the FLEX-6000s can have up to 8 VFOs and there is n way to tell OmniRig which slice is A and which slice is B.   You can group slices together as "split" pairs, but again, with a 6700, which one of the 4 split pairs is OmniRig controlling. 

    For this to work, you have to send the CAT command to Slice A (VFO A) to go into Split Mode which creates slice B (VFO B) and then the CAT commands for VFO B are utilized.

    This is a limitation of OmniRig because when it was created, there wasn't an 8 receiver radio paradigm to consider.

    And you are not using the latest SmartSDR.ini file for OmniRig either.  The latest version was modified on 11Jan2016
  • Tim - W4TMETim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited November 2017
    I wrote this above.

    OmniRig is designed for radios that have a main VFO (A) and a secondary VFO (B).  the FLEX-6000s can have up to 8 VFOs and there is n way to tell OmniRig which slice is A and which slice is B.   You can group slices together as "split" pairs, but again, with a 6700, which one of the 4 split pairs is OmniRig controlling.

    For this to work, you have to send the CAT command to Slice A (VFO A) to go into Split Mode which creates slice B (VFO B) and then the CAT commands for VFO B are utilized.

    This is a limitation of OmniRig because when it was created, there wasn't an 8 receiver radio paradigm to consider. 
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    Supposedly Daniele is working on Version 2 of Log4OM right now. He hasn't posted much updates lately though. 

    You might try their group on facebook:

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/log4om/
  • EA4GLIEA4GLI Salvador Member ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    So talking to omnirig developer is about the only option....?
  • Tim - W4TMETim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited November 2017
    No.  Talk to Log4OM about not using OmniRig (CAT) and communicating to the radio directly with the network API.

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