Flex 6500 and RTTY/PSK

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Hello all. Which would be the most appropriate RTTY/PSK decoding program to use in order to take full advantage of the 6500 ? I am not searching for logging program, just decoding. Not a contest program either. Which would be your recommendation ? I also own the Maestro FWIW.
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Paul F6EXV

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Posted 2 years ago

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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Probably the simplest RTTY program I have found is MMTTY.  (free)  It's demodulator is very versatile and powerful with the option to fine tune lots of parameters, or just use it as it is.

FLDigi is a pretty nice multi-digi program that does RTTY, PSK, and a whole host of other modes. (free also)

Others have had good luck with the digital suite included in HRD (Ham Radio Deluxe). HRD costs about $99.  I have not used it, though I tried the earlier, free version. I didn't particularly like it.  Others love it.  It is a matter of personal preference and operating style.

For PSK only, there is always the old standard, Digipan, which still works well.  I haven't run it in a while.

I would suggest you try some of the free ones first and see how you like them before spending money on more elaborate programs.

There are many others available.  I will let those who are more familiar with them offer their opinions.

Ken - NM9P
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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I mostly use my radio(s) for contesting and MMTTY integrates with N1MM+ so it is my choice. 

I use FLDigi for PSK31 and other digital modes. 
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W7NGA

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It's noisier than most .. but works good and lasts a long time!
Does not do auto-logging and tends toward recalcitrance.

(Edited)
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wb7ond

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And it will ordorize a room to that sweet smell of warm machine oil...
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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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40 years ago I had one of them in our kitchen at Heidelberg. The kitchen was big, but almost filled
with a Siemens T100 with it's big sound-dampening hood, 2 tape punchers, 1 tape reader and
an interface with a beautiful crt with it's magical green cross. TRX were a YAESU FT-290 and FT-790,
each with it's own amplifier - also later used with success to transmit over AMSAT-OSCAR 10.
I loved the machine, which gave off a very distinct clattering sound and smelled of oil and
electricity. I still have some punched tape loops for CQ, CQ DX etc. All gone now...
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Rick Hadley - W0FG

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I too miss that part of the old days, particularly the smell of the hot oil and all of the sounds. At one time, my shack held Model 28 ASR, KSR, TD, and typing-reperf, along with a Kleinschmidt TT-100 and a Mite and an St-6 TU.
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Clay N9IO

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The oil, yes that brings back memories, thanks Rick.  Had a model 19asr, reperf, reader and st-6 TU.  Early 80's my xyl N9IOQ worked in the county data process dept (key punch).  Her only request was to operate rtty before she got home from work after listening to the mainframes all day long the teletype 19 was a little much for her, ha...  When I changed to the C-64 she was even a willing participant.
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Kevin K4VD, Elroy

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I'm thinking FLDIGI is one of the most versatile.
  • It encodes/decodes many digital modes (JT is missing) quite well.
  • It controls the 6500 pretty nicely without any clunky bridge software.
  • It is fairly lightweight and has a super clean interface.
  • It has an active community of users and a good support team (Yahoo! groups).
73,
Kev K4VD
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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For JT modes there is really no other good alternative to WSJT-X. Yes, someone can write a third party app (as has been done with JT65-HF) but WSJT-X when used with JTAlert is actually pretty darn good. 
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wb7ond

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Check out this also:  http://www.qrz.lt/ly3bg/JTDX/jtdx.html and
https://www.qrz.com/db/UA3DJY  had to fix got Japan lang web site.
(Edited)
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WH6HI - Pat

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It also has the best interfacing between Flex 6000, WSJT-x, JTAlert and my logging program Log4OM.   Used to use HRD logbook, but now that there is no compatibility between HRD logbook and JTAlert, some sort of spat between the two SW providers. Go  figure. resulting in change to Log4OM (free) and it works better then HRD Logbook.  Only problem I have had is DB ownership on the computer when trying to integrate FLDigi.   
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Dave - WB5NHL

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I agree on FLDIGI.  VERY actively supported by author, Dave Freese, and large community. Recent changes (in cooperation with N3FJP) include direct writing to N3FJP logs. Works well with 6500 in split mode (Slice A/B).
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I0JBL - Luc

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Hi Paul nice to read you here. MMTTY is the best choice for RTTY as is. I use Fldigi for PSK also if is not my favourite mode. Best DX
Luciano, I0JBL
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Phil m0vse

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It hasn't been mentioned yet but for RTTY contests I use 2Tone, it is VERY basic and integrates directly with N1MM. There is also GRitty which can also integrate with N1MM but is for receive only. It uses Bayesian analysis and works great with weak RTTY signals (I tend to use both GRitty and 2Tone simultaneously). For other modes, FLDigi and DM780 are both very capable. 
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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I have twice placed 3rd place in the world in RTTY Roundup in my category by using MMTTY and 2tone together on each band.  I can vouch for their workflow on N1MM integreation. Gritty is interesting but not a real high speed solution and the N1MM integration is a bit clunky IMO.  I am curious on gritty but not really gravitating to it for high speed rtty operation right now. 
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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Flex 6700 with Maestro, K6TU control  SO2R with MMTTY and 2Tone running on 15 and 20 meter slices at N6WM.  right mouse click = enter is enabled so the entire operation can be done via left and right mouse clicks unless a manual fill is needed.  The outputs of both decoders shows up in the digital windows of N1MM allowing me to pick the decode of choice to act on.
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Kevin K4VD, Elroy

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My comment might be a little off topic but... nice setup! I really enjoy checking out other people's shacks. Thanks for sharing. Love the wallpaper.

73,
Kev K4VD
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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thanks :-)
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Rory - N6OIL

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Hi Chris can you share your setup configs and maybe some of the gotchas and what land mines to look out for?

 Thanks
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Clay N9IO

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Paul,
I run MMTTY along with 2Tone on both Writelog and N1MM+, great working combo.
Have no interest in the other modes yet.
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Rory - N6OIL

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I too have the same setup but this time I want to go SO2R, Trying to figure this out. I know I should of asked this days ago instead of last minute. 
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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Sure.  ill do my best I am a bit short on time tonight and will be off grid tomorrow. bear with me and ill feed tidbits here as I deal with other stuff.. sorry just super busy. 

One of the great things about the flex environment is the virtual audio setup provided by the Digital Audio Exchange (DAX) system.  so setup should be a snap.   so my setup this weekend will be using 4 radio instances, two of which will be on my flex 6700.

You will need to setup in an SO2R configuration.  for instructions on how to set that up, including the Open Two Radio Switching Protocol, (OTSRP) follow this link.  OK nevermind the main flex site is down right now.. The instructions are in the documentation section of the main website when its online again.. SRI :-\

So my setup in N1MM setup in an SO2R configuration.  You can use this configuration for 2 properly isolated antennas, or you can set up 2 instances on the same band.  



Com11 is a port setup in SSDRCAT for slice A
Com12 is a port setup in SSDRCAT for slice B
COM13 is a port setup as OTRSP to work with Slice A/B
(the instructions for this are in the Setup Doc.)

Install MMTTY.  Take note of the location because you will need 2 istances of it, copy the MMTTY folder to a separate directory, call it MMTTY2.  (if you want a second decoder, like 2tone same rule applies, 2 separate instances..  

in SmartSDR or Maestro you will want to set slice a to use Dax RX channel 1, and slice b for channel 2.  (GOTCHA!! dont use the DAX IQ streams!!)

In the first instance you will setup the RX side to use the Dax RX channel 1, to correspond with Slice A.  Subsequently channel 2 will be setup in your second MMTTY instance.  In both instances setup to tx audio for DAX TX audio, this is where your AFSK audio will be generated.   lets take a look at a working MMTTY setup  


In N1MM you can setup the digital programs to use your MMTTY instances



for the sake of simplicity you may want to setup your Mark to 2125 and in either case 170 shift.  some think that tone is a bit high pitched but most are ok with it..  we can cover that another time.  your MMTTY should be receiving audio if you did your dax setup correctly..  qrx more next post.
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Rory - N6OIL

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Thanks Chris I was about 80% there just trying to get the 2 MMTTY decoders with 2Tone going. Yeah hope the Flex site comes back online soon.
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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ok 2 decoders.  you need 2 instances of 2tone, one on each DI.  in Digital interface 1, go to setup, add rx windows, enable attached rx windows,

then go to setup, add rx windows, open additional rx windows. a setup box should pop up, and you will setup 2 tone using MMTTY setup. so

Window type None
MMTTY setup, Path: path to your 2tone.exe file then save.  the window DI window(its a bit cloogy) should restart and you should have a second decode widow and your 2 tone should start as well.  set the same mark/shift.

SO gotchas are selecting wrong audio devices for your decoders,  and not choosing DAX TX for transmit.  

Also make sure you set up and save TX profiles for each slice, with the proper amp drive/power level etc.  otherwise you will probably have power level persistence issues..

another gotchas is not setting N1MM to tx via radio command for digital modes..  

Now for the power user Ungotcha  "secret"...once you are dialed in,   under setup in the DI window,  set RT click = Return not menu and you should be in ESM in N1MM  Config > Enter sends message.

result, left click on incoming call populates call into logger, right click sends exchange left click on his exchange finishes log data, right click LOGS IT and sends TU, <Your call> CQ.  If you have your macros setup correctly you will be on fire.  I call it the left click right click ballet, and the best intro to SO2R I have found anywhere.  since you dont need to use your brain to decode, start working with and assimilating the SO2R workflow..  sooooo fun!

Now I want to see lots of flexers with Superscores!!!  (oh <shameless plug> and dont forget to call me on all bands!)

N6WM@N6RO, Hybrid K3 X 2 and 1 Flex 6700/maestro/K6TU control with 2 slices totaling SO4R....   3 alphas and 1 acom 2000 (mostly for quick access and full band awareness) ready to take your call..  extra credit to the sleuth who can figure out where the 6700 is hiding... much smaller footprint for sure.. GL fellow flex gang members!

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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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dont forget to turn on some classical music in the background to compliment your mouse click ballet!
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Rory - N6OIL

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Well I think I got everything working, just a few glitches I'm trying to figure out like why does my 2nd input screen on the left say PSK31 and not displaying the freq in the title bar and why can't I resize the 2Tone windows? Thanks for all your help Chris. I'll be on tomorrow night for testing. Just figured out the input screen issue I had to just click on the side of th band chooser.
(Edited)
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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excellent.  GL with your testing tomorrow, I have the kids at the ski slopes tomorrow so will miss practice, N6RO may test the system for me himself, if you hear my call during practice....  work ya Saturday!  and most importantly have fun!
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Rory - N6OIL

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Well the everything seemed to work in the  test session tonight, let's see what happens tomorrow.
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Rory - N6OIL

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Trying to figure out why when I click on a signal and use my roller on my mouse I loose focus and have to double click back on the tuning screen, something in N1MM is taking back control and I'm not sure if it's the decoders or the entry screen.
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Check the "focus" assignment in SSDR Setup > Radio. And also the similar functions in the N1MM+ Configuration tabs.
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Chris. I managed to get two pans & two slices going in SO2R/V type operation. But I couldn't get the second decoder Windows going for the same slice ( to run both mmtty and 2Tone simultaneously for the same slice.)

Fumbling with that, and trying to edit S&P messages on the fly while operating, is why I lost you on 20 Meters for a few moments.

I finally decided to just go with one decoder each. But didn't run long. My back isn't cooperating today. I spent my B-I-C allottment trying to get things set up! Ha.

I certainly won't be putting in a competitive operation this contest. Perhaps I will run some more later tonight or Sunday afternoon.

Thanks for the tutorial.

Ken - NM9P
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Rory - N6OIL

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Ken make sure in the DAX for each slice you an set number. Mine for slice A is 1 and slice 2 is 2 then check your DAX control panel to see if it's streaming.
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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I have done that, But I am having a different problem.  I am able to decode from both slices.  But I cannot get N1MM+ to open up a second, different RTTY decoder on the same slice.

Many of the "Power Users" (which I am not) do this and run two decoders in parallel to take advantage of the different decoding algorithms.  Some decode better in the midst of fading, others in the midst of QRM, etc. By using two decoders, a RTTY op can gain a kind of electronic diversity reception.  

When I try to follow Chris' instructions to load 2Tone as the second detector, I get an error that says that N1MM cannot detect MMTTY....

Tomorrow afternoon I will try again, and start with 2Tone first, and see if I can load MMTTY after that.  Right now, I have other pressing business to prepare for Sunday Morning....

73  Ken - NM9P 
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Rory - N6OIL

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Well if you want tomorrow I can show you my setup that Chris helped me with via TeamViewer if you would like.

Rory
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Thanks, Rory.  My schedule is pretty crammed for a few days.
I'll need to get back to you.

Ken - NM9P
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Andrew O'Brien

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Winwarbler with Commander  with advanced MMTTY support and better Flex support (via Commander) than other digital mode software is what i would advise.PSK31, 63, and RTTY with 2T .
Andy K3UL
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wb7ond

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If you want a break from FLDigi, check out MultiPSK.  It has decoders other programs do not have.  The GUI is a new exercise in pain, but it can be rewarding when you get used to it.  
Dick wb7ond