How I am now using Full Duplex to monitor my SSB and AM Audio Adjustments....

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This is the first of several planned posts about using some of the new features on SSDR V. 1.5.

Ever since I got my 6500 I have monitored my audio on my Flex-1500 in order to fine-tune my SSB audio.  I use it both live and as an RF recorder..  Recorded audio is superior because I can record several samples on the 1500, then loop several of them together and listen for differences in performance, readability and "comfort level" of the received signal.  It also isn't subject to "in-head" distortion due to bone conduction while I am talking.

In the previous release (1.4.16) they gave us the ability to record our own audio and play it back post-processor, filter & EQ.  This was a very welcome feature, but I still usually used my trusty 1500 because I could make live adjustments while listening and then make a final recording to listen to without my headphones.

Now that 1.5 has been released, I may now have no reason for the 1500.  I can use FDX to listen to my own signal while testing.  Here is how you can do it, too:

1) Run the tests at lowest power, into a dummy load.  Better yet, set your TX antenna to "TRANSVERTER"
2) Open slice A to a frequency on a quiet band.  (I use 6 meters, above regular use frequencies in order to avoid other signals in the receiver..
3) Open a second slice (B) and set to the same frequency and mode.  Use the bandwidth you expect people to use while listening to your signal.  (or a little wider)
4) Set TX to slice A on Transverter
5) Set RX to Slice B on an unused antenna port (Either B or RXA on a 6500)
6) Mute receiver on Slice A
7) Engage Full Duplex (FDX)
8) Keep your speaker level low to avoid feedback, or better yet, use headphones and mute the speaker.
9) Before transmitting, double check to make sure that you will not be transmitting high power or to an antenna.
10) Begin transmitting and making adjustments. 
11) Be sure to save any new TX Profiles.
12) Be sure to return your rig to normal antenna settings when finished.  It will save you a lot of grief later...

NOTE:  There WILL be a delay in your monitored audio.  Until you get used to it, it may scramble your brain while you talk.  Once you have done it a while you will get used to the delay and begin to ignore it.  (Until then, the delay can scramble your thoughts and make you sound like an idiot...which is another reason you don't want to do this over the air!) 

Depending upon the power level selected for the transverter port, my receive signal is anywhere between an S9 and S9+30 dB.

I have tried listening to myself by transmitting on my HF antenna and listening on the transverter port.  It worked OK, as long as the power was kept low.  If I got about 5 or 10 Watts while listening on my own frequency the receiver began to overload and distort rather badly.  I could do it quite nicely at 1 Watt.  With the 6000 series it doesn't matter, since the transmitted signal is virtually identical at 100 Watts as it is at 1 Watt.

Having experimented with this for a couple of days, I am satisfied that I am getting an excellent sample of what my transmitted signal sounds like.  In fact I am sufficiently satisfied that I am now thinking of putting my 1500 on the market to help pay for an amplifier, (or perhaps a Maestro?)  I never thought I would say that.

Thanks FRS!  Now I need a couple of transverters so I can do full duplex satellite!
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Posted 3 years ago

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Al K0VM, Elmer

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Ken,
 I like your idea... To extend it, after you have set up this test configuration, you could save it as a global profile ( mic test) and export it so that it is easy to get back to in the future..  And save your TX profile once you have the mic tweeked.

AL, K0VM
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Good Idea, AL.  I hadn't thought about using a Global Profile to save the AUDIO TEST setup .
I don't use Global Profiles much.  On the other hand, I DO use many TX Profiles.  Now I can quickly fine-tune them with only my 6500. 
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Rob Fissel

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Thanks for this, Ken.

One little thought to help alleviate the delay when listening to yourself, should it cause you a problem. For whatever reason, my brain crawls to an absolute halt when I hear myself on a half second delay, and it prevents me from speaking normally. 

Audacity is a free open source audio editing and recording program that many here use to record themselves for voice keyer contesting purposes.

Assign any DAX channel of your choice to Slice B, and select that DAX RX channel as your input in Audacity. Disable MON if you desire in SSDR, hit record, and transmit away. 

Another option recently mentioned here is using OBS (Open Broadcast Software). Great free open source program that will capture your screen or individual programs, along with high quality audio (up to 2 sources). Slightly different execution in that you'll be routing your DAX RESERVED AUDIO RX "X" as your input of choice in this software. 

Rob K2RWF
(Edited)
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Another Good Idea, and a great way to capture multiple profile samples for later evaluation.  I will give it a try.  I already have been using Audacity for other purposes. Now I have another purpose for it. Thanks.
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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I just tried it and it works well.  Too bad there isn't an easy way to post an MP3 to this board or I would send samples of my Rag Chew and DX Profiles recorded via this FDX and Audacity. 
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Rob Fissel

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Sounds great. Try also playing around with OBS. Really easy to use, and then you have video to accompany that will also show your settings. 

You could always upload your MP3's to Dropbox, and share the link URL here as another option. 
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Al K0VM, Elmer

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Does the video icon just below this boards entry window not work for mp3 ?
AL. K0VM
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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I just posted a Video tutorial on this subject.
I hope it is helpful.
https://youtu.be/CzT1qDKKySk

Ken - NM9P
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Simon Lewis

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thanks Ken - Def gonna play about this weekend with the Heil Pro 7 now

thanks for the tips and ideas

Cheers
Simon
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Kevin LaFata / K0KEV

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Great video!  I would love to see (and hear) some of the other sound profiles too. Your explanations of where to adjust the EQ for things like "bringing out the vowel sounds" were something I've never seen explained so clearly before.
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ON5AM

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ken, Great job. I understand too how adjustments my audio. Tell me just how keep the profil of my micro because I have always "default, pr781..." but in my shack I have an NT2A and NT200 with other caracteristics. Thanks
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Thanks...
In the profiles tab, you can select "save transmit profile". It will ask you for a name. Give it a new name and hit "save" and you should be done. Remember...every time you change something in your transmit profile, you will need to save it again, or you will lose the changes when you change the profile to something else, or when you turn the radio off. You can also create multiple transmit profiles and give them all different names.

Does this answer your question?
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Simon Lewis

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Ken I have 2 Flex 6500's .. I assume you an export and import from different radios??
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Yes. I am assuming that tx profiles can be exported from one 6500 and imported by the other. I see no reason why you shouldn't be able to do that. If this is in error, I am sure FRS staff will correct me.

I am not sure about cross-model export/import. I would hope that TX profile info could be shared from one rig to another. The rest of a global profile may be another story, since they don't share everything in common.

If sharing of profiles is not currently possible, it would be a great addition to the profiles manager.
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Simon Lewis

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thanks Ken

yes it does .. will give it a try tomorrow as my 2nd 6500 is away at the remote site where we are building a new house

Sharing the profile info between machines would help for sure!

Thanks for this and the video :)
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ON5AM

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You make a good job for the community. Thanks for lighting and the video is perfect too. Ken can I explain in my web-side http://on5vl.e-monsite.com/ your
ingeniousness, in french of course ?
(Edited)