Re: Fldigi & K3S USB, Windows 10 setup

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Re: Fldigi & K3S USB, Windows 10 setup

Don Wilhelm-4
Howard,

Let me try to help simplify things for you.  I cannot tell you exactly
how to run your computer, but I can tell you about the K3S part of it.  
Take it one step at a time.

First, yes, the built-in CODEC in the K3S can be used as the soundcard
for digital applications such as Fldigi.
The first requirement is that the computer install the driver for that
soundcard which allows it to show up as the available soundcards in Fldigi.
If you do not see that soundcard listed on your computer, that is a
problem that must be addressed first - likely a bad driver installation.

Once you have the soundcard installed properly on the computer, then you
should be able to receive and send data modes from Fldigi.
Use DATA A - and you will probably want to widen the DSP filter width
because it defaults to a narrow width to allow tuning to a single signal
with VFO A.  For use with a waterfall display such as Fldigi provides,
you will want a filter width similar to the SSB filter width (2.7 or 2.8
kHz).

Adjustment of the LINE OUT level on the K3S (a CONFIG Menu setting)
should allow Fldigi to decode whichever data mode you select in Fldigi.
Adjust the level (and possibly the soundcard slider) to give you the
proper background color and signal color in the Fldigi waterfall.
Be aware that the default sideband for DATA A is USB.  If you are using
an Fldigi data mode that requires LSB, you can use ALT to switch
sidebands on the K3S.

Once you have Fldigi receiving and decoding properly, you can move on to
transmit.
With the K3S, you can make adjustments in TX TEST mode - everything
works the same as in transmit mode, but no RF is transmitted.
You can set VOX on but if you choose not to do that, you will have to
use some sort of PTT.  The K3 has a KEY-PTT config menu item that you
can set to either RTS or DTR for PTT - make certain that Fldigi and
whatever you are using for rig PTT is set to use the same signal as you
have set for PTT in the K3S.

Make certain you do not have anything plugged into the LINE IN jack on
the back of the K3S - that takes precedence over the K3S internal
soundcard "line in".

Adjust the soundcard slider for 75% to 100% and then set the K3S LINE IN
level to produce 4 bars on the ALC meter with the 5th bar flickering.  
That is the correct audio level.

Take the K3S out of TX TEST and you should be able to transmit. Adjust
the power level with the K3S power knob - do not attempt to control the
power with the audio level - that may appear to work, but will work badly.

73,
Don W3FPR

On 4/11/2016 12:19 PM, Silverwater wrote:

> Need setup information of Fldigi in order to receive and transmit with
> Hellschreiber (Feld Hell). I am asking about CW too, just to have that
> option.
> Anyhow, I'm currently a CW (80%) and SSB operator, I enjoy antenna
> design/construction… but I need help with understanding the computer
> interface with rigs. (I have had success with digital setups with other rigs
> (not Elecraft). I just followed instruction posted by others… but a deep
> understanding I didn't have.
> I have the K3s since last November 2015 and have successfully connected/used
> the K3 Utility program and now want to use Fldigi with the K3s.
> My first question: Is the USB connection, the only cable needed to interface
> my computer to the K3s using Fldigi?
> Other related questions:
> Does the USB connection supply the audio received from the K3s to the
> computer AND supply the audio out from the computer to the K3s?
> If I'm using the K3s USB cable, does the Fldigi use ONLY the K3s's built in
> sound card or a combination with the computer's soundcard?
> Should I use Hamlib from the Fdigi configuration, and which check boxes
> settings: Audio, DTR, CTS, XON, XOFF, recommended baud rates, stop bits…?
> For Hellschreiber and CW modes should I be on DATA A digital mode while
> using Fldigi?
> If "USB cable ONLY" option is valid, what settings on the K3s need to be
> changed for Fldigi?
>
> Additional Notes: My computer OS: Windows 10. I have chosen for both the
> recording/playback : USB Audio CODEC… also the proper COM was chosen.
> I have read many previous posts… and tried to understand them in search of
> answers to the above questions… but still confused… need more info.  Thank
> you for your valuable time!
> 73, 4x1zz Howard Silverwater
>

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Re: Fldigi & K3S USB, Windows 10 setup

Silverwater, 4x1zz
To Don W3FPR,
From Howard 4x1zz,
Tnx for your explanation concerning connecting Fldigi and the K3s's USB Audio Codec soundcard, it certainly simplified the matter. I did manage to get it working just before receiving your response and now with your explanation I reread past forum discussions and various manuals and put certain doubts to rest.
The USB Audio Codec showed as an available soundcard… no problem here. My guess is that the driver was previously installed when I used the K3 Utility's terminal mode (de Elecraft).
My problem was solved when I checked off (chose) "PTT via Hamlib command" (under Fldigi Configuration/RIG/Hamlib) AND no other option was checked off. Previously I tried (unsuccessfully) many different combinations of RTS, DTR and VOX settings. Now with the above "PTT via Hamlib command" checked & the PPT-KEY is set to OFF-OFF (under DATA A)… and all is working fine. You did mention that I can use these other PTT options but I will need more of an understanding before implementing these "other" PTT methods.
Since my goal was Hellschreiber (Feld Hell) I knew to use DATA A (I've read that compression & TX/RX equalization are turned off in DATA A). I am also aware the DATA A parameters need to be setup for each band.
I set the bandwidth wide for receiving. (At a later date I'll experiment with CW and Fldigi, but for now I do not have a use for it… except curiosity). I didn't see that the filters & bandwidth settings defaults to a narrow width (as you mentioned)… I've only experienced the DATA A remembering my last settings… but I'll look out for this.
I did not adjust the LINE OUT (LIN OUT) level and kept it at the default setting of NOR 10. There is a warning (in the manual) that levels above 10 might overdrive the soundcard and other bad side effects. With some experience I'll understand better how to monitor the signal using the PC via the proper background/signal color in the FLdigi waterfall that you mentioned.
The TX Test mode is a good and convenient feature, I've used it during this setup and in the past. I set the soundcard's output level, via the computer so that the ALC level showed 4 bars with the fifth flickering… the level happened to be 75%.
Yes, if a cable is plugged into the LINE IN jack on the back of the K3S, the K3S's soundcard will not see the USB's input, even if opposite end of the cable is not attached to the computer.
I made my first QSO on this mode, FELD HELL (Hellschreiber), to Canada (14.074 MHz)… exciting is an understatement!
Thank you DON, W3FPR for assistance, patience, valuable time and kindness.
Sincerely, Howard 4x1zz