Provide a way to generate sidetone without using key

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  • Updated 1 month ago
The 6400M/6600M need the capability to quickly generate sidetone for setting the tone frequency and to allow the operator to zero beat a station on CW.

Possible implementations:
1. Assignable F-key to toggle sidetone on-off
2. On CW Mode Transmitter Control Panel, tap the pitch value to toggle sidetone on-off

73,
N9SE
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Marty Ray

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Posted 1 month ago

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Jim K4JAF

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Question: Why do you need a sidetone to zero beat a cw station, you can easily zero beat a cw station using the panadapter on the Flex.  
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Marty Ray

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Thanks for your question. I agree that zero-beating can be accomplished using the spectrum display, however using the sidetone is more convenient and accurate (without requiring the operator to zoom in on the display). Other modern HF transceivers provide this capability. It surprises me that the 6600M does not match the features of other transceivers.

For example, the K3, FT-5000, FT991, TS-450 and many, many other modern and older transceivers, generate sidetone by pressing a button.

The IC-7610 provides a button on the screen in CW mode to toggle break-in on/off. From the 7610 manual: "This enables you to match your transmit frequency exactly to another station’s by matching the audio tone."  --On the Flex 6600M, you have to drill down into menus to turn break-in on or off.

From the FT-5000 manual: "[SPOT] Switch - This button turns on the CW receiver spotting tone; by matching the SPOT tone to that of the incoming CW signal (precisely the same pitch), you will be “zero beating” your transmitted signal with the frequency of the other station."

TS-450: "In CW mode, while pressing and holding the [IPO/ATT] button, the Spot tone will be heard and Spot tone frequency will show in the display. This tone corresponds to the pitch of your transmitted signal, and if you adjust the receiver frequency to match the pitch of the received CW signal to that of the Spot tone, your transmitted signal will be precisely matched to that of the other station."

One can cite many more examples.

The K3, KX3, FT-991 and others, offer a tuning offset indicator. In addition, many transceivers (IC7300, IC7610, FT991, K3, KX3, TS-990, IC-7851, ...) provide an automatic zero-beat feature. 

From the TS-990 manual: "While the Bandscope or Waterfall screen is open, Auto Zero-in (CW Auto Tune) can function by touching the screen longer than the time configured [during setup]."


Bottom line is that the Flex 6600M should provide a way to quickly and easily generate sidetone without keying the transmitter. (There should also be an 'auto-tune' function as well, but that is another thread.)

73,
N9SE