Ask for advice those whom have Flex and SPE 1.3Kfa

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Drive power from my Flex 6300 to Low Med and Max selection
or any recommendation you may give to get the best from this linear.....I'm using Dan's cable not bad.....but I can't get all functionality from  DDutil so I decided to make cable recommended for SPE.....
I know I read a post from someone who made FTDI - 232 connection ....I couldn't find it :(

In advance.....Thanks for your advice!!


George, YV5WZ / PY3ZZZ
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YV5WZ

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Posted 1 year ago

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David Ahrendts

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George, I faced the same problem just two weeks ago with my Flex 6500 and my new SPE 1.3K-FA, and the fix is really cool. The new Smart SDR 1.10.16 replaces DDUtil for rig control and frequency follow, and actually controls the Flex from the SPE 1.3K linear for Min, Med, and Max levels which you set once and forget for each band (I've set mine to 500W, 1000W, and 1300W+). It requires one additional cable -- a USB to Serial adapter cable using the FTDI chipset. Mine has Rx and Tx lights on it so I know when it's "talking."  
I'll suggest emailing Bob's assistant, Dan Tassell, kc5pcb2@att.net, for exact instructions and for his cable which works beautifully. Dan was enormously helpful in one exchange, and the Smart SDR does a much better job than DDUtil with the SPE 1.3K. Happy to do photographs for you also if you need them. Really very happy with this setup.

David Ahrendts, KK6DA, Los Angeles  
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YV5WZ

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Thank you David.....How much power drive you set in your 6500 for each level?  I'm getting over 500 watts with only 10 watts...but I'm afraid to overload my audio

Thanks for your advise

George, YV5WZ / PY3ZZZ
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Paul W5PF

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George,
I have the SPE 1.3K also. I get about 500w out with 10w drive also. I use about 17 or 18 watts for mid power and get about 1KW out. On max power 21-22 watts gets 1300-1500 watts out. So it looks like your setting is about right.
73,
Paul W5PF
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David Ahrendts

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The manual is really awful in describing how you must set ALC between the Flex and the SPE 1.3K. Has someone explained that procedure? Once set the amp controls the flex Power output to achieve that power you want. And yes, just a few watts produces a few hundred watts out of the amp. I know -- yikes. 
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YV5WZ

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I have read a well Italian English Owner Manual  hahahaha.....but....anyone has not  explained more about it.....would you please...thank you
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David Ahrendts

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1) Email Dan Tassell with Expert and obtain his cable for the Flex 6500 and the SPE 1.3K. It is well worth it. He's done his proven research.
2) Obtain a simple USB to Serial adapter cable using the FTDI chipset. Got mine on Amazon. There are some with little blinking Tx and Rx lights so you know it's chattering.
3) When you see you have frequency follow (try changing bands), then you must set the three levels for each band to simulate ALC. So when you select LOW, you know it sets the Flex to transmit at the power to achieve LOW (in my case, I set it to 500 watts for Low).
4) Set OP on. Set PWR to LOW. Using the arrow keys, press up or down and you will see a temporary display just above the BAND display that says PC: 007 or whatever. Try that, transmit a tone (not TUNE) and check the SPE 1.3K output. If you like, it will save on exit.
For 20M, mine is set at LOW=007, MID=013, MAX=20. With this setup, when you invoke LOW, the software causes the Flex to lower the RF Power to that level, or MID or M AX. The SPE controls the Flex just as an analog ALC would. Pretty slick. Set once for each band and forget.  
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WB9IXS

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George,
I have a  Flex 6500 running v1.10.16.91 software and a SPE 1.3K amp. I am using a USB to serial cable between the Flex and the amp. The only special part is the USB to serial cable MUST be a FTDI chipset type. In the USB cables function on the radio I have the cable setup as a CAT type. Then in the amp I selected the CAT setup and set the CAT to Flex-radio using 9600 baud. That's all there is to it. The Amp follows the selected radio band. The next piece is to set the power drive to the amp. Yes you are correct it only takes about 15 watts drive to get full power out from the amp. What I did is very similar to what David, KK6DA did. I put the amp in operate mode and selected low output. Then I put the radio on 40 meters, made sure the antenna was tuned, and turned the tune power on the radio to around 5 watts. Hit transmit and watched the power output from the amp. I adjusted the tune power until I had 500 watts out at the Low power setting. In my case that was about 7 watts drive. Then you use the up and down arrows on the amp, while in the operate mode and transmit off, to tell the radio how much drive you want.The up -down buttons are located just above the CAT and DISP buttons. Again in my case I set the amp for 7. So now every time I select 40 meters and the amp is in operate mode and the power is set to low then the radio RF power is automatically set to 7 watts. If I was not using the amp and I had the radio RF power set at 100 watts as soon as I hit the operate button on the amp the radio is set to 7 watts RF power. You do the same sequence for all three power levels on the amp Max, Mid and Low. This piece is not very well written in the guide, in any language. If this is still not clear please advise and maybe I can take some snapshots and makeup a PDF document for you.

73
Jim
WB9IXS