Slave Slices -- idea to Synch up 2 slices

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  • Updated 5 years ago
There are benefits to zooming a slice in all the way but obviously you can't see much of the band. On the zoomed in view you get a lower noise level and precise tuning adjustment.  

For a wider view of the band, you can open a second panadapter and set the zoom out to cover the full segment of interest.  If you see a signal in the wide view you want to work,  it would be nice if there was a fast way to get the slice in the zoomed in panadapter to same frequency.

Here is the idea -- Slave or lock two slices so that if you "click tune" in one the other moves also.   

Note: I'm using a workaround today utilizing DDUtil and a macro but it takes 2 clicks.  (one mouse click to tune the lower slice, one button press on the FlexControl  to activate the macro and move the upper slice)  It would be much nicer to slave the slices and do it all from SSDR with a single mouse click.

I don't think I've seen this suggested before but it may be somewhat related to the diversity enhancement.  Thoughts?

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


Upper slice is the zoomed in view
Lower slice is the wider view of the band segment

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Al / NN4ZZ

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Posted 5 years ago

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Ken - NM9P

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Although I love the idea of a slaved slice for diversity and other uses, Here's as additional option that doesn't require a second slice (which would probably be muted anyway....allow a second PAN slaved to the first slice/pan with a marker showing the frequency of the first slice/pan. Allow clicking on either pan to change the frequency of the first slice. Call this a "slaved pan adapter."
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Al / NN4ZZ

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Ken,
Sounds good!.  On the 6700 with 8 slices I never use them all and wasn't thinking about "slice conservation."  But your option could be better where that's a concern.   Whatever is the preferred development option works for me. 

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

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Al: I feel your pain. Using the 1500, it was never a problem as I could only see 48 kHz of spectrum. With the 6300, opened up to cover a whole band, the view around the TUNED frequency gets lost. While slaving two slices would work, it seems to be a waste of a slice. Recently, I got to use an ICOM 7800. Recent firmware added a small Panafall window centered on the tuned frequency, +/- a few kHz. Similar to what Ken suggested. Maybe it could go on the right hand side with the equalizer etc. --Mike, WV2ZOW
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W3DCB

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Now, that is a great suggestion!!!!!  That s one of the most practical suggestions any one has made!  This would REALLY, REALLY, be a great tool!!!!! I hope that Flex pays attention to this one...I do not end requests to Flex...never have...But this is the best suggestion I have seen!!!!!

de W3DCB  Daniel 

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Al / NN4ZZ

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Hi Daniel,
I was looking back at one of the older road maps and see that "Slave Slices (lock) was listed for V1.1 but was marked as "unshipped.'"   It looks like it would do what I suggested for this idea and maybe that was what was envisioned.  

Unfortunately It has not been implemented in the following 1.2 or 1.3 releases either so I wonder if it is still planned.  Diversity was released in V1.3 and utilizes a variant of slice locking.   I thought user defined slice locking might show up in V1.3 as side benefit.   

I hope it is still on the radar, I haven't seen anything from FRS saying that it is no longer a planned feature.  At least I can't find any reference searching on the community.    Anyone know the status?

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


Slice locking is listed in the road maps from August 2013 and May 2014.   However it was dropped from the legend in the May 2014 roadmap.  (the legend is pasted in on the copy below)


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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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Official Response
The Slave Slices (lock) was a misnomer for Diversity.  This was later renamed as Simple Diversity and delivered in v1.3.  
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Richard Clafton W4/G7EIX, Elmer

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Although this is available on the 6700 in Diversity - I as a 6500 user would love the ability to have two slices - one zoomed in, and one showing the whole band.   
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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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I do this all the time right now.  Put a slice on a panadapter and zoom it in.  Open a second panadapter with no slice and zoom it out to show the whole band.  You can do this on all of the FLEX-6000 series radios.  No need for a slaved slice to do this.
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Al / NN4ZZ

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Gerald,
Agree but what is missing is locking the two together.  If you see a signal on the wide view panadapter that you would like to work, the idea is that you could click tune it and both panadapters/slices  would jump to the frequency.

Currently you would have to click tune it on the wide panadapter and then drag the slice on the zoomed panadapter up or down the band to get to it.  Or manually enter the frequency on the zoomed panadapter.

Locking the 2 slices together would make it a "one click" operation.   Does that make sense?

Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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OK, I understand the use case now.  That is not what we meant by Save Slice in the earlier Roadmap as stated earlier.  You definition would be a new feature that we have not considered.  It is a good idea that I will submit but I don't think it will get in a near term release given the existing backlog.  Thanks for the suggestion.
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Al / NN4ZZ

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Excellent, thanks Gerald.   Agree this is a new idea and should be prioritized like any other,

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

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Gerald,
Thanks for the explanation.  Although I have a 6700, like Richard mentioned I would still like to have the ability to lock 2 slices that are in 2 different panadapters.  That would provide the ability to have one showing the whole band and one zoomed in.  (like in the example for the idea).  It looks like the basic logic to accomplish this is in place.   Is this idea still a possibility?

On a related note, I have been experimenting with the Diversity feature and so far haven't found a situation where it has been helpful.  The function appears to be working as explained, its just that I haven't found the right QSB or fading scenario to utilize it yet.  

I would probably use the locked slices feature more often than I use diversity and if implemented it would work for both models. 

Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
 
(Edited)
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Ken - NM9P

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Hi Al,
Perhaps this feature relies upon having two antennas that are vastly different enough to provide a wide variance between the two.  Although I only have a 6500, I have use the "poor-man's diversity"  otherwise known as an antenna switch!  There are times that the difference between my 160 Offset Fed Dipole and my Full 1/4 elevated vertical is up to 2 S-units, sometimes favoring one, then the other.  It would be nice to have this automatically done, one in each ear.  Better yet, the next generation, where the rig sums the signals and subtracts the noise.  Alas, I am stuck with a lowly 6500!  <grin>!

That having been said.  I also would appreciate the ability to have, not a totally slaved slice, but a panadapter linked to a slice and slaved so that a marker shows up where the other slice is so I can have a "Wide View" and a "Zoomed in View" and only use one slice.  I would rather give up one of four panadapters by itself and not waste a pan AND a slice (which would likely be muted anyway.)
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Al / NN4ZZ

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Hi Ken,
On the diversity, my current testing has been with a K9AY loop and either a 2 el yagi for 40/30M or the K9AY loop and a 3el quad for 20-10M.   So that may not be the best antenna setup.  I haven't seen anyone post about diversity yet so would like to hear from others (in a new topic please).  Maybe we are all still testing.  

On the locked slices, agree, even locking a panadapter would be an option but less flexible.  I think if you have a spare slice to lock it gives you more control (preamp, AGC, different antenna selection, balance, etc).on the 6700.   

Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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Your antennas need to be uncorrelated in order to work effectively.  This was noted in the announcement.  Examples horizontal/vertical, orthogonal, or spaced 10 wavelengths if identical antennas are used. I referenced a QST article that you may want to read about circular polarization on HF.

Think of it like stereo microphones.  If you have two identical microphones taped together on the stereo recording input, you won't here much stereo on playback.  In that case the audio coming to he microphones are highly correlated in both phase and amplitude.
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Ken - NM9P

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10 wavelengths?  That would be some good trick on 160 Meters!  Guess I need to start looking for a bigger back yard!
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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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Yeah, that takes a big yard.  On the other hand read the QST article, "Gimme an X, Gimme an O, What's taht Spell? - Radio."  It talks about crossed dipoles that anyone could adapt for diversity.  You can also use one horizontal and one vertical.  That works too.