CW-Keying via Serial port

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  • Updated 5 years ago
  • (Edited)

I use the software QARTest for cw contests. This software uses the DTR or RTS pin of a serial port to key the radio (see picture below).
I can use my Flex 6300 in the same way, but I am wondering if there is a way to configure a serial port, on SmartSDR Cat, so QARTest can key the Flex without using an hardware interface.
All related similar posts are very old (9 months or more). What is the progress up today and what is the suggested solution?

Thank you and 73'

Photo of IW7DMH, Enzo

IW7DMH, Enzo

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Posted 5 years ago

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Photo of Al / NN4ZZ

Al / NN4ZZ

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Hi Enzo,
Nothing has been announced yet but per Steve H. they have plans to implement remote paddle keying at some point.   The implies that it would be via the API  (CAT is a possibility also but seems to be unlikely given the FRS preference to not extend that interface).   Obviously a hardware connection between the remote PC and the accessory connector on the radio is not possible.  So it will be a software connection in some form.  

More discussion on the remote paddle option here:

The question is whether support for remote paddle keying will show up in V1.4 or V1.5 or V2.0 or some later release.  So it could be months (or years) from now.    Maybe it will show up on the road map at some point. 

Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com

Photo of Sergey, R5AU

Sergey, R5AU

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Completely agree with Al - "So it could be months (or years) from now."  For now we have TRCVR ready for the local use only, Voice\Digi\CW ready for the remote completely - are open questions for the moment
Photo of Eduardo Carvalho - KC8R

Eduardo Carvalho - KC8R

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That is a good question and it would be nice to have such feature. However, one can achieve a similar result by using the CAT commands that are now available for CWX. I have been using this method with N1MM and it works good, except for the fact that ESC key on the keyboard does not interrupt the transmission, you have to use the keyer to interrupt it.

Here is the link to another thread where I describe it also:

Eduardo - KC8R
Photo of IW7DMH, Enzo

IW7DMH, Enzo

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Thank you very much for your feedback.

I think CWX requires a very long time before any external software start using it.
I think, also, that Flex Team should review its release plans: this one, imho, is one of the most important features for a contester rig. It could set the Flex Signature at the same level of other contester radio like K3 and FT5000.
I really hope there will be a change in the future.
In the mean time I am wondering if you know a C# library that can convert RTS/DTR signals into cw character. This could be a really must-have plugin for ours Flex.

73 'Enzo