training wheels for SSDR

  • 2
  • Idea
  • Updated 2 years ago
We (Surrey Amateur Radio Club) have just ordered a 6700 + Maestro as "best of class" station.  Several factors led to this choice (my personal bias was hard to restrain, especially as club president).  Positive factors included:
  • Safe, as in self protecting
  • Part of a fully remoted station - Radio + antenna switching + rotator control + amplifier
  • Contest grade
The biggest detractors were:
  • Fear of computers
  • No knobs (Maestro for on-site) but we aren't purchasing a Maestro for each member 
Now the idea:
Dummy down (semantics: Training-wheels, simplified, introductory, GUI knobs) the initial screen with "Standard" and "Advanced" option selects.  A screen with a hundred controls has a very steep learning curve and discourages many to even try (learning).
Perhaps a GUI simulation of the Maestro with keyboard/mouse equivalents;  it has the most important knobs well layed out.

In contesting, using N1MM+, I primarily use the panadapter to SEE out of pass-band CW stations and the RIT knob to tune them in.  Everything else is pre-set.  This applies to other brand radios as well, except to SEE out of pass-band stations.
Photo of Stan - VA7NF

Stan - VA7NF

  • 426 Posts
  • 97 Reply Likes

Posted 2 years ago

  • 2
Photo of Ernest - W4EG

Ernest - W4EG

  • 213 Posts
  • 39 Reply Likes
You will not be disappointed...
If I can learn how to set it up and use it...I would say anyone else can too.
I am not a computer guru ... just an average user with very little help from the outside.
Photo of Jerry W4UK

Jerry W4UK

  • 44 Posts
  • 7 Reply Likes

Back in the day. PowerSDR had a feature that allowed you to download a "virtual RF" file (I/Q data) and play it back on the freely-downloadable PowerSDR. This let a newbie actually try out all the features at his leisure. You could also record a file of your own if you had the full radio installation or one of the little SoftRock receivers.

This is how I was introduced to SDR. I ordered my first Flex (the original SDR-1000) because of this demo feature. 

 I once recorded a demo I/Q file on a CW contest weekend with my radio to take to a club meeting. As I was playing it, one of the guys at the meeting heard himself CQing ! They were impressed.

I have always thought that Flex would be selling more 6000s if they had a similar feature for SmartSDR. No simple I/Q file for the 6000, though, so it may not be practical.


Jerry W4UK