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Band select buttons in SmartSDR

Steve G1XOW
Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
edited May 2020 in New Ideas
I guess someone may have already asked for this feature before. One of my real hates with SmartSDR is having to click BAND first before you can select which band you want to work, the same also applies for enable/disable of the RCA key line to the amp there is no quick easy one-click way to do this. This is one of the complaints that the knobs-and-dials buys like so much (I am not one of those btw).

This would not be an irritation if we only ever drive the radio from a cluster collector /  logging app, but when working a contest the ability to rapidly switch bands is a must - without needing a cluster collector going.

My request is simply to put these buttons on the bottom grey bar. Also, for those that don't like screen clutter then include a switch to turn this feature on/off in the settings menu.

If Flex can't do this then maybe one of the 3rd party apps like SDRbridge or FRStack might be able to include it?   20 years ago I would have done it myself but my coding knowledge is long overgrown with **** now.

Example below, what do you think?

2 votes

Open for Comments · Last Updated

Comments

  • John G3WGV
    John G3WGV Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Even though I am one of those "knobs and dials boys" I entirely agree with you. The same argument might apply to rapid mode switching. I have been thinking about designing a "quick action pad" into my home-brew logging program to do this sort of thing for some time. Mostly I keep my logging program in focus when operating so putting it there makes sense for my needs but I can easily see that if you use Smart SDR as your MMI then that would be the place to put it.

    John, G3WGV
  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager admin
    edited May 2020
    Hi Steve

    Good points.   When I run N1MM+ Logger in a contest, I have band buttons available in N1MM that allow me to quickly change bands.  

    https://n1mmwp.hamdocs.com/manual-windows/entry-window/

    Look on the left hand side.  The N1MM guys have done a lot to make sure you can be as efficient as possible in a contest and some pretty slice 'workflows'.  It is free and is used by contesters worldwide.



    Would that not work?  

    Also, you can type a frequency directly into the logging input (where you would normally add a callsign) for a quick QSY.

    Your taskbar looks like a good idea as well.   That shouldn't be too hard for someone to write?  Why not give it a shot as the code developing software is free and there is lots of help available to get you going.

    You might also try emailing Mark at FRStack.   One other thing is that I think that if you use a Stream Deck you can have a hot button available.    https://www.elgato.com/en/gaming/stream-deck-xl



    I hope those thoughts might give you an idea or two.  

    73, Mike va3mw


  • Steve G1XOW
    Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Mike,

    Thanks. Some good ideas. I was kind of hoping this might make it in to the mainstream SmartSDR app, rather than having to run yet another 3rd party app that floats around the screen, get minimised etc. I dedicate one of my two 24 inch 4k monitors to SmartSDR, so really would like to see band selection up front on that monitor in full-screen mode. The SmartSDR is elegant to look at, and it does get spoiled when you have lots of mini-apps and general windows clutter at the sides.

    I forgot to mention that I'd also like it to work over the network as I plan to move my radio and amp to another room soon, for me that suggests core product UI is the best place for it.

    I use N1MM for contesting and Logger32 for everyday logging, but as I said we don't all drive our radio via a click-and-shoot logging apps, sometimes it's just nice to be able to casually flick around the bands to see what is going on using SmartSDR.

    When contesting in S&P mode it is best to look at and "hunt" using the waterfall not N1MM, to me the logger (on the other monitor) comes in to play once you have found the station to work.

    73
  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager admin
    edited May 2020
    Hi Steve

    It might, you never know and I am not in a position to say.  

    FRStack and the StreamDeck will work over a network in case you are not aware.  In my shack, even when I am at the location, the radios are 300M away.  The rest of the time I run 100% remote.  I am not exactly sure how your setup will go, but with all the key stuff being LAN based, I think you'll find it pretty accommodating.

    You might try emailing Mark at FRStack and ask.  While he is here in the community, he doesn't read every post.

    73, Mike



  • Craig_KØCF
    Craig_KØCF Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    FRStack can also do memories, which are exactly what you are asking for. Yes, I know it is a separate app, but it works so well. This is how I have mine set up, and it is always on the screen immediately left of SmartSDR:
    image
    I also use a stream deck and have keys on that set up to do this, but this is much more granular, offering modes as well as bands.

  • Steve G1XOW
    Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Hi Craig, I must admit that I had not played with FRstacks since like version 0.01 so looks like this baby has changed a wee bit.

    Anyway, now got it loaded and learning how to drive it. Looks to be pretty ideal for what I wanted especially because it has stay on top available. I have wedged it in the space where some of the SmartSDR control panels were. Nice and neat sat there. Will see how it goes. Thanks!

    image

  • Craig_KØCF
    Craig_KØCF Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    • I see you are using MRU Bands. I use the Memories because they are  much more versatile. You can name them (as I have done), set a frequency and  mode, selectivity, antenna, RIT/XIT, etc. To access this, right click on a memory and near the bottom of the context menu, select Edit Memory. You can also link it to a profile and set panadapter bandwidth in the right-click menu.

  • Alan
    Alan Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    I like using the "mini-window" available under the pulldown "view".  You can set this "on top" window to show a set of memories or favorites and then easily apply any one of them to a selected slice.

    Alan
    WA9WUD
  • Tim K9WX
    Tim K9WX Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020

    The core of Steve’s original suggestion was for a feature in SSDR that would allow users to operate with fewer mouse clicks. 

    In a similar vein, something that would be equally or more beneficial would be for SSDR to remember AGC settings by band and by mode, instead of just by band. 

    Example: I operate 80m CW where I have AGC set to medium.  I QSY to 80m FT8 and manually set AGC to off.  I QSY to a different band and operate whatever there.  If I now QSY back to 80m CW, SSDR will set AGC to off, the last value used for that band.  Instead, it should set AGC to medium, the last used value for that band and mode.    

    This would be particularly beneficial where band changes are initiated by third party software such as DXLab and WSJT-X.

    I am using SSDR 2.4.9 so my apologies if this feature has been included in more recent versions.

    Tim K9WX




  • Steve G1XOW
    Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Tim, I agree it gets very tiresome when you switch from one band to another only to find where you landed is in the wrong mode. The mode-band matrix is pretty well documented and well defined for every band. So why do we have to override inappropriate default settings?   PITA
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    I find the same thing while using the band select buttons. What i do now is make a Global Profile for all ,my modes and bands. So I make one for FT8, one for CW, another for 40 meters SSB ,,,80 meters SSB and so on. now when I change bands selecting Global Profiles, everything is there just the way I want it, mode, band, and any possible settings.
  • Tim K9WX
    Tim K9WX Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Bill: I would not want to beguile you from your solution.  But as I pointed out in my original post, but we need a solution that works with third-party software, where Flex profiles never come into play.
  • Dave Garber
    Dave Garber Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    this is why I set up profiles for band and mode.    1 click and I am there.  no selecting band, then mode, and then antenna



  • Robby Robertson
    edited May 2020
    Steve, why do you have to enable/disable the RCA control lines to change bands. Just enable them all. I enabled all that correspond with the bands I use. The bands I don't use have TX inhibit enabled all the time. Why don't you just leave them alone.
    It is very easy to change bands and set everything just as you want them. Use profiles. That's what they are for.
    Learn how to create and use profiles and your problems are over.
    -Robby
    HP3SS
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Global Profile does just that, it sets everything...by band and mode.
  • Robby Robertson
    edited May 2020
    Exactly. One click sets everything.

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