Bit Cables - labels inconsistent between SSDR & USB Interface Guide

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  • Updated 5 months ago
I have just finished building a custom interface using a USB bit cable. It works well but during the design/construction process I noticed that there are no less than three different designations for each bit. 

Currently;
In SSDR SETTINGS the pin designations start at PIN 0
In the INTERFACE GUIDE the pin designations start at PIN 2 which is also named BIT 1.

So there is conflicting information: 
PIN 0 = PIN 2 = BIT 1...... etc up to..... PIN 7 = PIN 9 = BIT 8

It's not hard to follow the relationships through but it does take time. A simple edit would make things more transparent. Given that the job of a 'guide' is to help rather than mislead, could I suggest the following:

1) Change the heading for the BITS column in SSDR settings from "Pin" to "Bit"
2) In the Interface guide, re-label the bits starting at BIT 0.....& ending with BIT 7 to correspond with the numbering currently used in SSDR settings. 
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Paul

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Posted 5 months ago

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Paul

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In addition, I wonder if it is feasible for the current status of each bit to be shown in the settings table - eg include a coloured indicator to show when a bit or bits are active? This would be useful when testing bit-cable controlled devices.
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NX6D Dave

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I think I'll conform the main documents to the Interface Guide.  Thanks for the tip.
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Paul

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Good idea Dave, I hadn't realised the conflict extended to the SSDR user guide as well. Obviously it would be better if everything was consistently labelled.
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NX6D Dave

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Looking through the docs, this is what I find:  The SmartSDR for Windows User Guide doesn't describe the cables and their pinouts.  I don't think it needs editing.  The USB Cables Interface Guide describes the cable pinout for the FTDI C232HM cable, labeling the outputs "Bits 1 to 8", then later describes the bits as 0-7. To start, we need to change the table that describes the cable to label the bits 0 through 7.

I'm going to consider the "Pin" designations in the SSDR software to be set in stone, and work with them, not ask that they be changed.  The Pin numbers in the chart on page 3 of the Interface Guide probably come from the manufacturer's documentation.  Off hand, I don't see a need to number those wires at all, since they are color coded.  We could call the Orange wire "Bit 0", etc.

Fortunately, I'm familiar with this detail as I built an antenna switch controller using this cable and some parts from a well known ham radio supplier.

Stay tuned, we'll get this sorted out.  Thanks again for pointing it out.
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Paul

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Dave, I agree there are a few ways to rectify this. I think if you are going to keep the "pin" designation in SSDR and the SSDR manual neither of them need altering as they are already the same.

I think however that the interface guide will then need the existing pin numbering changed to reflect what is in SSDR and its manual. And references to "Bit" should be removed. Vcc & ground can simply stay as they are but with no pin numbers.

The actual designations dont really matter but it needs to be consistent everywhere.


Thank's for taking this suggestion on board.


73, Paul
(Edited)
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NX6D Dave

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Please take a look at this edit of the Interface Guide:

https://1drv.ms/b/s!AgvdqNf7I04lgecoUqNUtV1srUGV2w

I think I have resolved the confusion in the nomenclature and kept it consistent with the way SmartSDR labels the signals in the USB Cables interface.  If this makes sense, then I'll update the SmartSDR User Guide to match.
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Paul

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Hi Dave, yes this is now consistent. Although the word "bit" is actually redundant if it is not going to be included in SSDR.