SDR-Control for iOS


SDR-Control for iOS – Software user guide



1.General

SDR-Control for Icom is an iOS App for your iPad to operate your Icom Transceiver via network.

Operate in any Mode

You can operate in SSB using the iPad internal Microphone or a external Microphone or Headset connected to your iPad or locally from your Icom as usual. You can operate in CW using the integrated Keyer. You can operate in FT8/FT4 and other modes using the integrated encoding and decoding tools. Operating in these modes no longer requires external Software and cables.

Local or Remote

SDR-Control also supports Remote Access to your Radio from around the world without the need for additional Hardware or Software. No Server is needed. It works, just with your Icom Transceiver.

The manual

This manual explains how to setup your Icom Transceiver and the App and how to work with the App. Where possible and where it makes sense, the App uses the same abbreviations and terms for buttons and menus that are used by Icom for physical knobs and Buttons on the Touch screen. Those terms such as “P.Amp” (for Pre Amplifier) will not be explained in this manual because they can be looked up in the regular Icom manual.
PLEASE NOTE: The App displays and can send back most values and settings to and from the Icom Transceiver. Some values (like the VFO Frequency and Waterfall) are exchanged real-time. Others needs to be polled from the Radio in regular intervals. For this reason, if you would use the physical controls of the Radio (except for the main frequency dial), changes are not or not immediately available to the App. Ideally, solely use the controls from inside this App.

Videos

In addition to the manual and for those who don’t like to read manuals, there are also a few videos from popular HAM Radio bloggers in English and German at the bottom of the App’s website: ham-radio-apps.com  

2.Requirements

SDR Control for Icom can be used for the following Icom Transceivers:

  • IC-705 (via WiFi)
  • IC-9700 (via LAN cable)
  • IC-7610 (via LAN cable)

USB Connections or other Transceivers are not supported.

The App runs on any iPad that runs at least iOS 15. There is no additional Memory or other Hardware requirement.

If you have purchased the App once from the AppStore (thank you!) you can run it on several additional iPads with any number of Icom Transceivers you own. No additional purchase is necessary. You only have to use one and the same Apple ID on all your iPads.

3.Setting up the Transceiver

Your Icom Transceiver needs some basic setup to allow this App to connect to it.

In general, the Transceiver must be setup to connect to your local Network (via LAN Cable for the IC-7610 and IC-9700 or WiFi for the IC-705) also the setting “Network Control” needs to be enabled, and a username / password must be set.

Detailed setup instructions can be found in the attachment of this manual for the IC-705 and IC-7610 or IC-9700. Even if you already setup your Transceiver, please have a look to Network Considerations at the end of the manual. A separate chapter Remote Access explains how to access your Icom Transceiver from around the world, outside your home network.

NOTE: If you have issues setting up your Radio, please have a look to the Common Issues chapter of this manual.

After setting up your Icom Transceiver, start the App. If you see the message that asks for permission to use the microphone, please confirm this message with Ok as well as a possible message about a recent update.

Next tap on Connect or the center of the Screen. The Radio chooser will appear with an empty list. Now tap on Add to add information about your Icom Transceiver:

Here, you need to enter the information you have collected during the transceiver setup as described before. You can also enter a Title for your Radio. Once you tap on Add at the top and back on the previous screen you will find your newly added Transceiver in the list.

To connect to your Transceiver, just select (highlight) the entry and tap on Connect – or double tap on the line of the list.

NOTE: If you have just one Radio or want to automatically connect to a particular Radio without seeing the radio chooser screen evert time, you enable the Auto Connect switch for that Radio. If you ever like to change this Auto Connect setting because you change your Mind or the Radio has received another IP Address, you can long-press the Connect button at the top and will see the Radio Chooser window again and can change the Auto Connect option. Alternatively, you can also reach this screen from the App Settings.

Final settings

Once you can connect to your Radio, don’t forget to adjust your ALC level as described further below.

Also, use the Network Stats Tool (under Tools) to see if you have a good network connection to your Radio. You should always have an error rate below 0.05% for a smooth operation. If the error rate is higher, you need to investigate for your network problems (see the common issues section for further help).

4.Main Window

After connecting to your Transceiver, you will see the main Window which includes all frequently used functions for controlling the Transceiver and below the waterfall.

The main window is divided in certain sections with buttons, sliders and meters.

Most buttons have identical names and functions like the physical or soft-buttons of the Radio and for this reason, they are not explained here further. Other buttons are special to the App and explained below.

On some iPads or when in portrait mode, you will not see all of the top controls. For this reason, this area can be scrolled to the left and right.

Button with multiple functions

Most buttons have two possibilities. They can be (regular) tapped to quickly change a certain setting and to perform a certain function. For instance hitting PTT once will start transmission, hitting it again will end transmission or a quick selection like the FIL buttons where you can quickly select one of the three filters.

In addition, most buttons have additional functions which can either be reached from an addition “more…” button or by long-pressing (tap and hold) a button.

For instance, if you tap the aforementioned FIL button, you can select Filter 1 to 3 or tap more.

Tapping on “More…” will show the filter settings (of the selected Filter 1) and detail filter options can be maintained:

The Mic button works slightly different. You can tap the button to toggle the microphone active and inactive indicated by a blue color.

To change the microphone selection, you need to long-tap this button.

Similar additional popups will be displayed by long-tapping on other buttons like Tune, NB, NR and many others.

TX Controls

The Tune button Tune functionality can only be used if your Transceiver has an Antenna tuner included or if a tuner is attached to it. However, long-tapping on Tune can be used to generate a 10% AM signal even without using a Tuner. A framed Tune button indicates an active tuner.

The Mic button needs to be used to define the microphone input source for your Transceiver. The available sources can be selected by long-tapping this button. To use your local iPad (either the internal microphone Headset connected to your iPad) as microphone source, chose iPad as selection.

PLEASE NOTE: When selecting iPad, you will see a dedicated audio level meter otherwise the Radio Compression meter will be displayed. Compression and Anti-VOX is not available when using the iPad as microphone source.

Long-tapping the power meter offers the option to replace this meter by the ALC or ID meter.

VFO 1 and 2 Controls

Depending on the VFO Mode and Transceiver model, the two VFOs are either called VFO A and B or Main and Sub.

Some Transceivers like the IC-7610 allows maintaining the settings of both VFOs at the same time. For others this is only possible for the currently active VFO. In that case, either click on the Main / Sub or VFO A / B buttons or on the VFO frequency to activate one of the two VFOs. All available buttons will get visible for the selected VFO and can be maintained as usual.

Tapping on the Frequency offers a screen for direct frequency input. Keep in mind that it must either be a frequency in MHz or kHz depending on the setting.

Center Controls

These buttons are also similar to the buttons available on your Transceiver and are mainly responsible for the relation between the left and right VFO. For instance the M/S (or A/B in VFO Mode) will swap the left and right VFO.

Some buttons like SAT (for Satellite Mode on an IC-9700) or TR (for Tracking mode on an IC-7610) are only available for Transceivers supporting this function.

Waterfall Controls and the Waterfall

The slider on the top right side of the Waterfall section can be used to adjust the waterfall reference level.

Hitting the button left from this slider let you chose the Waterfall mode like Center, Scroll-F, Scroll-C or Hold.

Hitting “More…” will show additional Waterfall settings.

 

PLEASE NOTE: Waterfall fixed mode is not supported.

PLEASE ALSO NOTE: Depending on the Radio capabilities, some features are not available in all Waterfall modes. For example, the Show TX setting only works in Center mode.

Further details are explained further below in the Frequency Tuning section of this Manual.

5.Supplemental Views

In addition to the Main Window, you can open (and keep open) additional supplemental Windows from the View menu.

These are, for example a separate Tuning-, CW-, Rit/Xit- and Memory Panel or Macro Quick access buttons and a DTMF Panel to send DTMF Tones or a Repeater 1750 Hz signal.

The Tuning Panel Window can be used to fine-tune the VFO Frequency:

This Window can be used to send CW:

If you hit the top right-hand button, you can squeeze (and enlarge) this CW Window.

This Window can be used to operate in Rit / Xit mode:

This Window can be used to scan in one of the available Scanning types.

PLEASE NOTE: The Icom Radios don’t allow to set the Scanning parameters like program ranges remotely so you need to maintain those settings at your Radio.

 

For Radios supporting D-Star (DV) this Window displays the current D-Star status and displays received messages. From here, you can also set your D-Star settings.

 

6.App Settings and Radio and Audio Settings

In this App, you can maintain two types of Settings. First, there are general App Settings which are App and not Radio specific such as your HAM Radio information like Call-sign, Country, Locator etc. and your credentials for the integrated Call-Sign lookup features. These settings can be maintained from the Settings tab at the bottom. Second, there are Radio specific settings which can only be maintained, once you are connected to a Radio. In this case, you will see another tab at the bottom named according your Radio type which can be used to maintain the Radio settings.

App settings

Most of these settings are self-explanatory. It might be worth to go though these settings and add / select your personal information and preferences.

In the “Information & Support” section, you can find the “Contact Developer” button in case you have questions or issues.

Radio settings

As mentioned before, the settings here depend on the Transceiver you are using.

An important setting here is the LAN input gain slider. Before you start working in digital modes like FT8 using the App you will need to maintain this gain slider for a correct audio signal. For this, look for a free frequency and start transmitting in FT8 (e.g. by calling CQ) and move this slider up from the lower position until the ALC meter no longer increases. For this, you can either watch the ALC meter on your Transceiver (as this must only be done once) or you can change the Power Meter of the App to display the ALC meter but then you would have to switch between the Waterfall display and these radio settings.

Under “STARTUP SETTINGS” you are able to force the iPad Microphone to be activated upon App connection.

Under “SETTINGS AFTER DISCONNECT” you can decide how the App should leave your Radio once you disconnect from the Radio. If you want to use your Radio with the locally connected Microphone once you are no longer using the App, you can select “Mic” for DATA ON and/or OFF mode for example. So if you forgot to change the Mic setting back from inside the App, this setting will ensure that you can use the locally connected Microphone after disconnecting.

You may see additional setting options here on the Radio settings screen depending on the capabilities of your Radio.

For instance, the IC-9700 offers a SAT mode so for this type of Radio you will see a button to maintain your SAT settings which are explained further in a separate chapter below.

For Radios that are providing Memory groups you can also maintain Memory group names.

PLEASE NOTE: If you have already maintained Memory Group names on your Radio, Icom doesn’t offer these names to remote Apps so you will have to enter the names again here for the App.

Audio Settings

The Audio Settings can be reached by clicking the top gear Icon.

 

Using button right of “Device:” you can select the audio device used by the App which can either be the internal Microphone and Speaker, a Headset or any other Audio device linked to your iPad.

Using the Mic Threshold slider, you can prevent submission of ambient noise by raising the slider as high as necessary.

At the bottom of this setting screen, you can enable and control the volume of the Radio internal speaker.

Change the Buffer size setting if you are experiencing audio dropouts.

7.Frequency Tuning

Frequency tuning is probably one of the main activities when using the App. For this reason, there are several possibilities for frequency tuning:

  • In Center mode: Move the waterfall to change the Center Frequency. Just click somewhere at the waterfall, hold your finger down and move to the left or right
  • In Scroll-F or Scroll-C mode: tap-and-hold the VFO Frequency (the yellow line) and move it left or right.
  • Double-tap somewhere on the waterfall to move the currently active VFO to that frequency
  • Tap on the VFO Frequency and get an input screen to enter a frequency manually
  • Use the supplemental Tuning Panel window to fine tune a frequency

Here you can use the <<, <, > or >> buttons to tune the frequency down or up based on the Step settings. You can use the Slider for continuous tuning down or up while holding the slider thumb. Tuning stops when releasing the thumb.

In addition, you can also tune the frequency by

  • The physical VFO knob at the Transceiver
  • Attach a MIDI controller such as the DJ2GO2 to your iPad via USB cable and use it for frequency tuning and more
  • Attach a Keyboard to your iPad and hold the Option Key along with , (comma) or . (dot) to change the frequency down or up by one step or 10 steps when additionally pressing the shift key.

 

8.Memories

Memories, stored inside your Transceiver can be recalled using the supplemental Memory Window (View Menu → Memories)

Using the MW button, the current frequency can be stored to a certain Memory channel and given a name.

The MC button will clear the currently selected Memory channel.

The Show Memories in Waterfall option will, if enabled, display the Memory names at the frequency location in the waterfall as shown above. You can adjust the position and font size of these Memory-Spots in the App Settings.

9.Advanced operation

9.1.Satellite Mode

The IC-9700 supports the SAT mode which is supported by this App.

In SAT mode, a pre-defined fixed distance between RX and TX frequency will me maintained. So if you change the RX frequency, the TX frequency will be changed accordingly.

Please note: The App doesn’t support yet automatically doppler-shift adjustment.

For the SAT mode you may want to see the actual Transverter TX and RX frequencies in the VFO screen of the App. For this, you can maintain the Sat Settings in the Radio Settings tab.

The above Sat Settings are an example for the following situation for working with the QO100 geostationary Satellite:

  • To receive the Sat Frequency of 10.4995 GHz, the Radio receives on the 2m Band on 144.500 MHz.
  • To transmit on the Sat Frequency of 2.4 GHz, the Radio needs to transmit on 435 MHz.

Your Transverter may use different parameters or even work the other way round (swapping 2m and 70cm).

The best procedure to enter the necessary values here is, to tune your Icom to the right starting (lowest) frequencies (on 2m and 70cm) for the Satellite before opening this setting screen. Then either enter the Diff values or the Real values – the other values will be calculated automatically.

Please note: All frequencies here need to be entered in Hz without dot. (e.g. 2400000000 is 2.4GHz).

Using the Display setting selection you can decide which Frequency should be displayed for instance in the FT8 Tool and which Frequency should be used for logging. This is usually the Real (Satellite) TX Frequency.

Once everything has been setup, your Waterfall screen may look like this:

Both RX and TX VFO show the right frequency used for the Satellite. Moreover the band and mode indicators for the QO100 Satellite is available.

 

 

9.2.Switching the Radio on or off

To power off your Radio, you can long-tap the Disconnect button. It is also possible to force the Radio to power down whenever you disconnect from your Radio by changing the corresponding Setting on the Settings tab.

Once the Radio is turned off, you can not turn it on again unless you configured your Radio to go into sleep mode instead of powering down.

To change this, use the following procedure on your Tranceiver:

For the IC-705:

Menu → Set →  Function → Power Off Setting (for Remote Control) → Standby/Shutdown

or for other Transceivers:

Menu → Set →  Network → Power Off Setting (for Remote Control) → Standby/Shutdown

10.Tools

Under the Tools tab you will find several helpful features which are extending this App.

Some Tools like the Network Stats Tool are for informational and debugging purposes. Some Tools like the MIDI Controller will add additional controlling capabilities to the App. Other Tools like the Logbook can even be used separately, without being connected to the Radio but all Tools are fully integrated and work seamlessly together with the App and your Radio.

10.1.Band Plan

The Band Plan tool provides a frequency overview of all HF HAM Bands for your particular region as well as the modes and maximum bandwidth as suggested by the IARU.

PLEASE NOTE: You need to select your particular IARU region under the App Settings in order to see the correct Band Plan for your region.

At the top, you can select if you like to see the General or QO-100 Sat Band Plan, which is also included.

If you tap on a band, you can see more details for the selected band.

 

If enabled under Settings, the Band limits and modes will be visible within the Panadapter as seen below:

band-limits

The “10 Meter >” information represents the Band limits information and the colored line represent the various modes like CW (green), Digimodes (blue), Narrow modes (Cyan), All modes (red), Satellite (yellow), others such as Beacons or guard channels (gray).

 

10.2.CW Macros

It is possible to create CW-Macros for your CW QSOs. After opening the CW-Macros tool, you can maintain up to ten different macros which can use Placeholders like {MYCALL} which will be replaced before the Macro gets sent.

A list of available Variables can be found in the Appendix of this manual.

To use CW-Macros, you can open the supplemental Macros window (View → Macros) for easy access as seen below.

 

Macros can also be sent using a physical keyboard and pressing the keys 1 to 0 along with the option key or a MIDI controller.

10.3.DX Cluster

The DX-Cluster Tool connects to any of several pre-defined worldwide DX-Cluster Databases or even your local CW-Skimmer and displays results (Spots) directly on the Waterfall or let’s you directly jump to the frequency of a particular Spot by just tapping on an entry in the list.

After starting the DX-Cluster Tool, you need to click on Start to start querying the selected DX-Cluster server.

 

If you double-tap on a line in this list, the Transceiver will tune to the particular frequency of this spot.

If you single-tap a line, you will see more details about the Spotter and Call.

Tapping on the Filter Icon at the top will show the various Filter options:

Here, you can select the Bands or Modes or Countries you are only interested in or enter CQ-Zones, ITU-Zones or prefixed of Spotter or Calls you only want to see. For those you can enter multiple values, separated by comma.

At the top of these filter settings, you can either enable or disable these filters.

The Settings menu will let you alter several options of the DX-Cluster Tool. From here, you can select a one of the predefined servers or add your own by clicking the Add button.

Map

You can either see a list of all current DX-Cluster entries or a Map by tapping the Map / List button at the top.

 

10.4.PSK Reporter

PSK Reporter is a great automatic propagation reporter for digital modes, including FT8 / FT4.

You can use PSK Reporter to get an almost instant idea about the current DX conditions and who is able to copy you around the world.

This App integrates PSK Reporter in two ways.

Submitting PSK Reporter spots

PSK Reporter lives from the fact that many HAMs are contributing their reception reports to PSK Reporter. This App can automatically send FT8 reports to PSK reporter when enabled (under Settings inside the FT8 Tool or the PSK Reporter Tool).

If enabled, a list of received FT8/FT4 signals will be submitted to PSK Reporter every five minutes. Except for the information about your antenna (which is optional), nothing else has to be configured.

Viewing PSK Reporter results

The opposite side of PSK Reporter is to view a list of all stations who received your signal. This is, what the PSK Reporter Tool is for.

To get a report of stations that are able to copy you, first have a QSO or a test transmission on a band you are interested in. Next open this Tool and enter your callsign at the top of the window (it not already per-filled) and click on the start button.

Once the list is filled with reports you can tap on a line for more details.

It may take up to 15 minutes after your transmission until you will see your results. This is because every contributing listener will update their reports every five minutes and it is not possible to download reports from PSK Reporter sooner than every 5 minutes as well. If you would request an update sooner than after five minutes, you will see an according message at the bottom of this window.

You can narrow down the results by using the Filter Icon at the top and selecting a Mode and Time.

 

You can also visualize all locations on a map by switching to the map mode using the Icon at the top.

 

10.5.Midi Controller

Using the MIDI Controller Tool you can configure so called MIDI Controllers such as the DJ2GO2 or Behringer CMD Micro MIDI Controller for use with the Radio.

The following MIDI Controllers are supported:

  • Numark DJ2GO2
  • Behringer CMD Micro
  • Behringer CMD PL-1
  • Hercules DJ Controller Compact

Other controllers may work as well but they are not tested.

The MIDI Controller needs to be connected to your iPad using a USB Cable. You may need an Andapter to connect the controller supplied USB cable to your iPad (e.g. USB-A to USB-C or USB-A to Lightning). The DJ2GO2 doesn’t need extra power so a direct connection would be all you need. Other Controllers may need more power so you may need to use a powered USB Adapter.

Once your MIDI controller is connected, you should be able select your Controller in the Device: selection.

If you then switch on the Enabled: switch, the Status should change to Connected as shown above.

To assign functions to each button, you need to open the Mapping Editor by tapping on Edit Mapping.

 

From here, you can assign Functions on Buttons, Controls (or Wheels and Sliders) and LEDs.

For assigning functions to Buttons or Controls, just hit the corresponding Button or turn the knob or slider on your Midi controller. A line with the corresponding code of the Control will be added, if necessary and highlighted.

Now, tap on the line and select a Radio action like “Adjust Main Volume” as shown above.

 

10.6.Logbook

The included Logbook was implemented with the idea in mind to offer a quick and easy logging feature to this App which should already provide all basic requirements for day to day logging.

You can Export (and import) ADIF files to exchange logbook contents to (or from) other logbook software.

After starting the Logbook tool you will see your last logs.

At the bottom, you see a trash-can which can be use to delete the whole logbook if you like and a sort menu. The Spy-glass will open a search field where you can enter a call-sign you are looking for.

To edit an already logged QSO, just tap on a line.

From here, you can alter all fields of the log manually or let them be filled using the HamQTH or QRZ.com lookup feature. For this, just tap on the corresponding button.

And you will see the details provided by these Call lookup services. Hit the Use to update Log button at the top to take over these values for all empty field of your Log.

There are several settings for customizing the logbook using the Settings button at the top.

When enabled, your Logbook will be synchronized across your devices. This synchronization uses iCloud Drive which needs to be enabled on your Device and will work even with the Mac Version of this App or the SmartSDR Apps.

Other Tools like the FT8 Tool will display Call signs marked in a different color if you have worked a call before. In the above settings you can define when a Call sign should be regarded as “worked before”.

Under Contest, you can let the logging Tool automatically generate text for the RST entries.

You can also filter the Logbook using the Filter button.

Logging a new QSO

For logging a new QSO, you have a couple of options:

  • From inside the Logbook Tool, tapping the + Icon
  • From View menu of the Waterfall tab and selecting “Log new QSO”
  • If a physical keyboard is attached to your iPad, by using the Option and L keys
  • The FT8 Tool will open the logging Window after finishing a QSO

The displayed logging window will be pre-populated with values based on the current VFO:

 

You just need to enter the Call-sign of your QSO partner and tap the Save button to save your QSO to the Logbook.

At the bottom of this Log entry window you can see some information about the entered Call-sign like QTH and distance in Km and Miles for the short and long path (LP).  Keep in mind, these values are only based on country level. For more accurate details you can use the Call-Lookup tool and query the QRZ.com or HamQTH databases.

At the bottom of the logging window you will see if you have worked this station before.

 

Log submission to other Apps via UDP

If you are using your iPad on your local network and want to continue to use another Logging software on your Mac or even your Windows PC, you can use a feature of this App which submits all new log entries to other software via UDP.

This feature can be enabled in the App Setting. If enabled, whenever you are adding a new Log entry, this log entry will be submitted simultaneously to the other Logging program. In addition, there is a “UDP Broadcast” button on the Log detail screen which can be used to submit any older or amended log entry as well.

For UDP Log transmission, you need to enter the IP Address of the PC/Mac where your other Logging program is running and the required UDP Port. If the program is running on the same Mac, just enter 127.0.0.1 as IP Address.

Unfortunately, there are different standards for submitting log entries via UDP. This App supports two different standards:

1.) For N1MM or Log4OM format

This standard is understood by N1MM or Log4OM and others, mainly PC based logging programs.

2.) WSJT-X format

This standard is used by WSJT-X. Every logging software that can receive WSJT-X UDP logging information can be used.

The ports that need to be used for each standard depends on the Logging program. Some will let you enter an individual port number, some have a fixed port number. In any case, the port number used by the logging software needs to be identical to the port entered here.

When clicking the Test button, a sample log entry will be submitted so you can verify if the log entry will be received in your logging program.

Logbook export

 

When tapping the Folder Icon at the top you can chose how to import or export your logbook. It is recommended to create export files vie Email or iCloud Drive to keep a backup of your Logbook.

 

10.7.Network Stats

This Tool can help to analyze network issues.

 

It displays information about the network traffic from and to your Icom Transceiver.

Internet RTT is the Round-Trip-Time (the time to the server and back) to a server on the Internet. This value should be lower than 30 – 50ms. Higher values indicate general issues with your network connection. However, this value is only important for Call Lookups over the internet.

Radio RTT is the Round-Trip-Time to your Transceiver. These should be below 20ms on local networks. However, this value should always be lower or at least equal than the Internet RTT. If this value is significantly higher (e.g. 1.5 or twice as high as your Internet RTT) there are issues with your local network (e.g. wrong LAN Cables or wrong FullDuplex/HalfDuplex network settings or a WiFi issue in case you are using an IC-705.)

The Radio Packets section shows the number of packets received for certain packet types along with the Error count and percentage.

A certain Error percentage up to 0.05% is normal and usually covered by the automatic error correction and often not even noticeable. Errors may even temporary happen if the device is too busy (e.g. while temporary switching to another App). However, continuous Errors might be an indication of network issues.

You may also want to monitor the Error rate while you are transmitting. If the rate goes up while transmitting, you likely have an EMC / RFI problem.

The Reset button at the bottom can be used to set the error counter to zero which is useful to see if there are any changes after changing some settings.

10.8.FT8

This tool allows to use and operate the popular FT8 and FT4 mode, invented by Nobel prize winner Joe Taylor, K1JT.

 

The screen above shows a typical FT8 QSO.

Foreword (please read)

I met Joe in Dayton in 2019. His speech inspired me to add this feature first to my iOS App. It took me some time to understand his way of encoding and decoding the FT8 messages and I learned a lot about FFT (fast Fourier transformation). Now, this Mac App also contains a full featured FT8/FT4 Tool.

A special thanks to Joe Taylor who brought us this wonderful mode.

Requirements / Features

So far, the App only supports FT4 and FT8. Also, no Contest or DX-Pedition mode is supported. It just supports standard QSO’s which are about 95% of all FT4 and FT8 QSOs.

The App supports AUTO mode to automatically generate answer messages based on received messages. It also supports Auto Logging and prompts to log a QSO with all entries pre-filled based on the recent QSO. Worked before Calls will be marked to prevent working them again. CQ Calls will also be displayed on the Waterfall just like DX-Cluster Spots.

How to use

My approach was to offer FT8 with minimal or no configuration and operation effort. If you are already familiar with WSJT-X, you will immediately know how to operate in FT8 with my App. If you have never worked FT8 before or found it too complicated, just read the following basics and you should be set.

My hope is, to encourage more HAMs to join this fantastic new way to get in contact with each other by providing a simple and easy to use FT8 tool. Even if you found FT8 too complicated in the past, just give it a try with this tool. No cable fiddling, audio interfaces, strange settings or CAT commands.

Just open this tool and start your first FT8 QSO.

A few FT8 Basics

A typical FT8 QSO starts by somebody (say K1CQ) calling CQ, next somebody like you (say DC1ME) is answering. Both will then exchange their signal reports and optionally end the QSO by saying 73.

Here is how it typically looks like:

Caller You Meaning
CQ K1CQ EN61 K1CQ is Calling CQ. His Grid locator is EN61
K1CQ DC1ME JO12 You are replying to him with your Grid locator
DC1ME K1CQ -11 K1CQ responds to you with a signal report
K1CQ DC1ME R-10 You, confirming his report and send your own report

Now, there are two typical options:

Option 1 (the fastest and more common):

DC1ME K1CQ RR73 K1CQ confirmed the reception of your report and says best regards. The QSO is done now. No need to respond again.

Option 2 (more polite option which takes longer):

DC1ME K1CQ RRR K1CQ confirmed the reception of your report.
K1CQ DC1ME 73 You say best regards.
DC1ME K1CQ 73 K1CQ send his best regards and the QSO is done.

If you would like to call CQ yourself instead, the procedure is the same. Just swap the Callsigns in the above table.

These so-called FT8 messages cannot be longer than 13 Characters. It takes 13 seconds to transfer these messages and they will be exchanged every 15 seconds. Thus, there can be 4 messages per minute. When sending at second zero or 30 it is called “even” or “first”. When sending at second 15 or 45, it is called “odd”.

Besides these aforementioned typical QSO messages, there is additional information that will be added to messages in Contests Mode or DXpedition mode. These modes are not supported by this FT8 tool.

CQ Callers may also add either DX or the desired destination to their CQ message if they just want to get an answer from certain stations.

For example:

CQ DX K1CQ EN61 K1CQ just wants to have DX QSOs
CQ JA K1CQ EN61 K1CQ just want to have contact with Japan

And that’s pretty much it. That’s all you need to know to operate in FT8 with this App.

If you want to learn more, just head to G4IFBs website which includes a fantastic FT8 Operating guide, written by Gary Hinson, ZL2IFB : www.g4ifb.com which is also available in other languages.

Using the FT8 tool

You can start the FT8 Tool from the Tools menu as usual.

There are two window parts, the Receive Windows with the blue header and the Transmit Windows with the red header. Both are explained more in details below.

Quick start

If you can’t wait and have no time to read further, the following sequence will perform a quick FT8 qso:

  • Select a Frequency (next of the RX Button)
  • Tap on RX and wait until the list fills
  • Double-tap on any of the entries of the list
  • .. and wait, the whole QSO will be completed automatically and ending with the logging window as shown below:

 

… if all goes well of course. But there can be situations where something goes wrong or you want to call CQ yourself. The following chapters will describe everything more in detail.

The Receive Window

On the top half you will see the RX window with the blue header.

 

All received messages are displayed on this part of the screen. The following colors are being used:

  • Green background: Somebody is calling CQ
  • Gray background: You already worked that station
  • Red background: your call-sign appears in that message (or you are in TX mode and message was sent on your TX frequency)
The RX Button

To start the FT8 mode, you will need to be connected to your Transceiver and to tap on the RX button in the upper left corner.

The Frequency selection

If you tap on the Frequency selection next to the RX button, you can select the Band or Frequency you want to operate. These Frequencies are fixed and you should only operate on these predefined frequencies.

PLEASE NOTE: The frequencies may differ depending on your location so please ensure that you set the correct IARU Region in the Preferences for the location from where you want to operate.

Please also ensure that you did set your Callsign and your Grid (QTH) locator in the App Settings.

Once you hit RX, the Radio will not just tune to the right frequency. Also, all necessary parameters such as Mode, Filter width etc. will be set automatically. So should you accidentally have changed some settings, just tap the RX button twice to get the right settings back.

After at least 15 seconds, you may see the first FT8 conversations in the upper receiving part of the screen.

FT8 / FT4

Use these buttons to switch between FT8 and FT4

AUTO

Because QSOs are standardized in FT8 (except for the two options to finish a QSO either by RRR or RR73), FT8 QSOs can be automated.

Whenever a message has been received, it the App knows which message needs to be sent next.

If you turn on the AUTO button at the top (make it blue), the App will automatically select the next message to be sent depending on the received message (even in case of an RRR or RR73) and sent the appropriate message automatically in the next transmission phase.

If you need more flexibility or want to finish a broken QSO, just turn off AUTO and select the message you like to be send.

If you select Message 9 {Individual}, you can even enter anything else as message which you would like to send.

Filter

On a busy frequency, the receive list can quickly get full and you may easily miss some interesting calls. The App provides a filter, described more in details later, to limit the number of calls in the list. Tapping the Filter Icon will open the filter settings from where you can toggle activation of the filter with immediate effect to the list below.

Erase

Tapping the Erase button once, will clear the TX Window (described below) and all QSO fields like DX and Report. A double-tap will also clear the RX Window.

You may want to use this Button, once you have finished a QSO for example.

tapping on an entry of the list

If you tap on an entry of the receiving list, Frequency, the odd/even setting, the Callsign and dB report will be transferred to the TX Window (see below).

If you would double-tap on the line, in addition, the TX button will be enabled so you will automatically start your transmission at the next odd or even slot.

The Transmit Window

The list in this window contains all your sent messages in yellow and marked with “TX” instead of a dB value.

In addition, it contains all messages that have been received on your RX frequency or messages that are containing your callsign.

This way, you can better focus on your QSO partner and will also see if somebody else is transmitting on the same frequency so you can interrupt your QSO or transmission.

TX

If you tap on this button, transmission will start at the next odd- or even- time slot. If active, the button has a blue background, if you are currently transmitting, the button is red, otherwise it is gray, indicating a listen only mode.

Odd/Even

FT8/FT4 messages can either be sent at an even- or odd time slot. The other station is receiving and transmitting at the opposite time slot. This button indicates your transmission time slot. You can hit the button to change from even to odd or vice verse. If you are not in CQ mode and answering somebody from the receiving list by tapping (or double tapping) on an entry from the receiving list, this button will be set automatically (to the opposite of the calling station you tapped). So normally, you will only need this button if you are calling CQ yourself and want to start calling either in the even- or odd time slot. If the frequency is free, it is common to start in the even slot but that’s up to you.

The colors for odd (green) and even (blue) are corresponding with the colors of the UTC time in the lists.

RX: TX: Frequencies

The two entry fields are used to enter your RX and TX frequency in Hz relative to the Slice frequency. The values usually ranges from 100 to 2900 Hz.

If you tap on a line in the receive list, the frequencies will be taken over from the line you have tapped.

Usually, you may want to transmit on the same frequency where your destination is transmitting. Using the […] button right of the two frequency entry fields, you can either enable or disable TX being equal to RX.

By tapping on TX = RX, the check-mark will be set or removed. If the check-mark is removed you can adjust TX and RX frequency individually. If it is checked, the TX frequency will always be equal to RX. Using the other options here will move the value of one field RX or TX to the other field.

You can also select the FT8 frequency conveniently from the Waterfall by long-tapping at the desired frequency and selecting “Set FT8 TX”.

DX

This field is for the Call-sign of the other station and will be pre-filled when tapping on an entry of the receiving list.

Rep

This field is the dB report of the other station which will also be pre-filled.

CQ

Using this button, you can switch between CQ mode or answering mode. A blue button indicates the activated CQ mode.

Message selection

Right from the CQ button, you can select a message which will be sent in the next odd or even slot.

If you are in AUTO mode, you usually don’t need to change this message, only if you are in manual mode or want to correct / repeat a previously wrong interpreted or received message.

The “Short Messages (no grid) will no longer start with the message which includes your QTH locator (grid) and instead starts with the report message.

LOG

Hitting the LOG button will open the logging window with all fields already pre-filled.

This button is not needed if you have enabled “Auto log after QSO” in the Settings of this FT8 Tool. In this case, the Log window will appear automatically at the end of a QSO.

You could even turn on “Don’t even show Log Window” and the QSO will be logged completely automated without any user intervention.

FT8 Settings

 

Most of these settings are self explanatory or you can just try them and will see what they do.

Using a higher decoding level may decode more stations but will also require more CPU time and is usually not necessary.

When TXing either while answering somebody else’s CQ or calling CQ yourself, the Max. TX retries value defines the number of tries so that you will not end up in an endless loop.

If you would enable Auto Log after QSO and even Auto Log without Log Window, all your QSOs will be logged automated without the need for any confirmation.

Filter Settings

 

The filter settings help to reduce the number of lines in the receiving list. The filter can be enabled or disabled at the top of this settings screen.

 

10.9.Call lookup

The Call lookup Tool can be used to learn more about a certain call-sign.

 

After entering the Call-sign in the top entry field, Basic information like Country, DXCC, CQ- and ITU-Zone will be displayed immediately. This information comes from an internal Database of the App which will be updated from time to time. This information is only accurate down to a country level. The location within a country will always be the location of the capital city of the country.

Further below you will get a list of previous QSOs to the entered Call-sign.

For more accurate and detailed information like the name, exact location or even Email address, you can use one of the integrated call lookup services like HamQTH or QRZ.com. If you have an account on one or both of these services, please enter your account information in the App Settings. In that case, you can use the HamQTH or QRZ.com lookup buttons for best results and most convenient display. If you don’t have accounts for these services, you can at least use the View on QRZ.com button which will show the QRZ.com website for the particular call-sign.

11.Attachment

Setting up an IC-705

It is possible to use your IC-705 in “Station mode” or “Access Point mode”. Both modes are explained in the two next chapters individually.

Setting up an IC-705 in Station Mode

“Station mode” means that your IC-705 will connect to your local WiFi Network. This is the preferred mode when using your IC-705 at home.

Use the Menu key to check or change the following Settings:

Ensure WLAN is ON and Connection type is Station

Tap on Access Point to select your own local WiFi network and enter the WiFi credentials to connect.

Ensure DHCP is ON. Once connected you will see an IP Address under DHCP. Take this IP Address down. This is now your Radio IP Address which needs to be used for the Radio setup in the App.

All other settings below DHCP should be grayed out.

Back to WLAN select Remote Settings

Ensure Network Control is ON. Verify if the Control Port has a value of 50001.

Ensure that Internet Access Line is FTTH. Tap on Network User1.

Now enter a Username and a Password. Both need to be entered when adding your Radio to the App.

NOTE: Please keep in mind that you need to restart your Radio if you have changed some settings (Valid after Restart)

Setting up an IC-705 in Access Point mode

The “Access Point mode” doesn’t require a local WiFi network because the IC-705 creates one on it’s own. You can use this mode for Field Days or whenever you are not at home. However, this mode only allows you to Connect your iPad only to your IC-705.

After changing the Connection Type to Access Point, open the Connection Settings.

You have to setup a SSID (the WiFi Name) and a Password for your WiFi connection of the IC-705. Please note this is a new WiFi network, don’t enter the WiFi name and password of your current local WiFi network here.

Take down the IP Address. This is now the IP Address of your IC-705 when connecting to it directly from your iPad. This IP Address needs to be entered when you setup your IC-705 in the App.

The remaining settings are the same as for the Station mode so please have a look to the previous chapter for these settings.

NOTE: Please keep in mind that you need to restart your Radio if you have changed some settings (Valid after Restart)

Setting up an IC-9700

Use the Menu key (Menu > Set > Network) to check or change the following Settings:

Ensure DHCP is ON and take this IP Address down. This is now your Radio IP Address which needs to be used for the Radio setup in the App.

All other settings below DHCP should be grayed out.

Ensure Network Control is ON.

Verify if the Control Port has a value of 50001.

Ensure that Internet Access Line is FTTH. Tap on Network User1.

Now enter a Username and a Password. Both need to be entered when adding your Radio to the App.

NOTE: Please keep in mind that you need to restart your Radio if you have changed some settings (Valid after Restart)

Setting up an IC-7610

Use the Menu key (Menu > Set > Network) to check or change the following Settings:

Ensure DHCP is ON and take this IP Address down. This is now your Radio IP Address which needs to be used for the Radio setup in the App.

All other settings below DHCP should be grayed out.

Ensure Network Control is ON. Verify if the Control Port has a value of 50001.

Ensure that Internet Access Line is FTTH. Tap on Network User1.

Now enter a Username and a Password. Both need to be entered when adding your Radio to the App.

NOTE: Please keep in mind that you need to restart your Radio if you have changed some settings (Valid after Restart)

Network considerations

Because this App needs the IP Address of the Transceiver for connecting to it, it is important to know that IP Addresses may change.

One possibility for a non-changing IP Address would be to manually assign an IP Address to the Radio and not using DHCP.

However, this is not recommended as you may experience problems if you don’t carefully chose the IP Address that don’t conflict with other Addresses on your network.

A better solution is to keep DHCP (the default) in the Transceiver settings but instruct your Router to always keep the same IP Address for this device. Unfortunately, there are different terms used for this feature in different Routers. It may be called static-lease or even static-IP so you may want to look into your Router’s manual to find this feature.

Another consideration is to use a secure password. This is especially important if you enable Remote Access as described in the next chapter.

Remote Access

With this App, it is possible to connect to your Icom Transceiver from outside your home network. For this, you need to let three ports pass your Router to the internet or in other words you need to open three ports in your Router.

Unfortunately, this task will be different from Router to Router so it can only be explained in general here.

The ports in question are the three ports found in your Radio settings under “Control Port (UDP)”, which usually is 50001, “Serial Port (UDP)”, which usually is 50002 and “Audio Port (UDP)” which usually is 50003.

Now you need to access your Router’s configuration website and look for a possibility to open ports in your Router.

Here, you need to open these three ports (50001,50002,50003) to the IP Address of your Icom Transceiver. If your Router want’s to know for which Protocol these ports should be opened, it it only necessary to open these ports for the UDP Protocol. If your Router want’s to know which ports should be used for the inside and which for the outside, you can use the same ports (50001,50002,50003) for the inside and outside. Sometimes you can enter a complete port range like 50001-50003. In some Router you have to open each port individually.

Once this is done, you will already be able to connect your Transceiver from elsewhere but you need to know the IP Address that now needs to be entered when you add your Radio to the App’s Radio chooser.

The IP Address you need is the public IP Address for your network allocated by your Internet Service Provider. You can find out this IP Address in your Router or by visiting one of the whatismyip websites.

However, most likely, this IP Address will change from one day to another. To address this problem, you can use services like https://dyn.com but most likely, your Router also supports additional services. Any of those services will provide you with a unique way to access your Public IP Address which always remains the same. Such an address may look like xxxxx.dyndns.org. Once you have setup everything, you can enter this unique address for setting up your remote Transceiver instead of the IP-Address.

For your convenience, just add another Radio to the “Available Radio” list by using the Add button again. Use a name that differentiates the new entry from your regular local access Radio (e.g. 705 remote), use the aforementioned IP Address and for the other values the same as for your local Radio.

Macro Variables

You can use variables like {CALL} in CW Macros.

These variables will be replaced by values from your settings or log before being sent.

The following Macro Variables are available:

 

{CALL} Will be replaced by the Call-sign currently entered in the Log Window
{SENTRST} Will be replaced by the RST Sent value of the Log Window
{RECRST} Will be replaced by the RST Received value of the Log Window
{NR} Will be replaced with the Contest Serial number, maintained in the Settings of the Logbook
{COMMENT} Will be replaced by the Comment value of the Log Window
{MYCALL} Will be replaced by your own Call-sign, maintained in the App Preferences
{TXFREQ} Will be replaced by current TX Frequency
{RXFREQ} Will be replaced by current RX Frequency
{FREQ} Same as {RXFREQ}
{TXBAND} Will be replaced by current TX Band
{RXBAND} Will be replaced by current RX Band
{DATE} Will be replaced by the Date entered in the Log Window
{TIME} Will be replaced by the current Time entered in the Log Window
{ENTER} Will send a new-line character
\n Same as {ENTER}
{NOW} Will be replaced by the current time in UTC
{GRID} Will be replaced by your Grid locator, maintained in the App Preferences
{LOG} Will cause the current QSO to be logged
{CALLSPELL} Will be replaced by the Call-sign currently entered in the Log Window spelled letter by letter

Keyboard Shortcuts

If a physical Keyboard is connected to your iPad, you can use Keyboard Shortcuts.

In order to display all available shortcut Keys, just press and hold the Command key on your Keyboard.

Please note: This list can be scrolled horizontally.

12.Common issues

App doesn’t connect to the Radio

If you did follow the instructions on how to setup your Transceiver for the App but the App still can’t connect, this can have various reasons.

The most common reason is, that there was a typo in the settings or the instructions were not followed exactly.

Before you start setting up remote access (which means to connect to your Radio from the internet), you should first ensure that a local connection is working reliable. So in this case, have a local setup first and use the Network Stats tool to see if the error rate is below 0.05%. Once that’s the case, start setting up a remote connection as described under Remote Access.

If you can’t connect, you may see an error message. If the error messages states “error 0”, this means your Radio can not be connected at all. So you might have entered a wrong IP Address or the Radio is not connected to your network. An “error 1” usually means you have entered invalid values for the connection (e.g. a letter or space for the port or invalid address)

Below are a few possible causes of connection issues:

Disallowed local network access

One reason could be that you accidentally confirmed the message after a first start of the App to give the App network access with “no”. This can be checked and fixed as follows:

  • Start the iOS settings App (gear Icon)
  • Select Privacy
  • Select Local Network on the right side
  • Search for the App and see if the switch on the right side is on. If it is off, turn it on an try again

iPad and Radio on different networks

Another possibility is, that your iPad and your Transceiver are not on the same network. To prove that, compare the IP Address of your Transceiver (you did already collect in the Transceiver setup steps) and the IP Address of your iPad. You can find this out by opening the Network Stats Tool (Tools → Network Stats). An IP Address consists of four numbers, separated by a . (dot). The Transceiver IP Address and the Mac IP Addresses must both start with the same three numbers. The last number will be different.

So for instance: 192.168.1.4 and 192.168.1.201 would be fine whereas if you have 192.168.1.4 and 192.168.0.10 it would be wrong.

Possible causes are:

  • Using an old firmware version. Please update your Transceiver always to the latest firmware.
  • Using a Mesh solution where DHCP is not working correct
  • Using a so called “guest” WiFi for the Mac and a regular network connection for the Transceiver
  • Wrong router or iPad settings
  • Cable issues or something else that prevents the Radio from connecting to your network

Wrong CI-V address of the Radio

Besides the settings mentioned in this manual, the Radio has many additional settings that may prevent the App from connecting. One example is the CI-V address. When this was changed, the App can’t connect. You can revert individual settings back to their default values of your Radio by long-pressing on a setting. But you can also reset all settings of your Transceiver from the Menu. Before performing a full reset consider storing your configuration on an SD-Card, just in case.

Wrong connection of your local network

For a local connection, you need to have your iPad connected to your Local network via WiFi. Your Radio need to be connected to your local network in the same way (WiFi for the IC-705 or LAN Cable for the other Radios). Only if you want to use your IC-705 without Internet, you need to have a direct connection between your iPad and your Radio (In this case, the IC-705 needs to be setup in AP mode and the iPad needs to connect to the AP of the Radio). In all other cases, both iPad and Radio need to connect to your local network and not to each other.

DHCP not working when using a Mesh

A Mesh network is usually no good idea as it may cause all kind of network issues or delays. Wherever possible use a LAN (cabled) connection or at least a fast direct WiFi connection. Especially on wrong configured Mesh networks you may end up with issues using DHCP because sometimes the DHCP server (usually your Router) can not be reached or even worse you may have two DHCP servers on one network which will not work.

Wifi issues

Wherever you have to use Wifi (e.g. for the IC-705 or the iPad itself) you may experience issues. However, you can always see if issues exist or your measurements to solve the issues were successful by using the Network Stats tool and having a look to the error rate which should be below 0.05%.

If you only have a high error rate when TXing, maybe you “just” have RFi. To prove that, just lower your TX power to 1% and see if that improves the situation

You may also want to look into your WiFi router settings for settings that may improve the reliability. Some routers allow to automatically chose a good WiFi channel. Even though that sounds good, it is not good for reliability if the Router decides to jump to another channel while working with the Radio. So it’s better to see which channel is free and assign that channel manually. But you may need to re-visit that setting from time to time at least once you have problems again.

Another typical issue with WiFi is roaming which not always works well. Sometimes a device might be still connected with the wrong Access point if you are using more than one.

The situation on 5Ghz and 2.4GHz WiFi might also be different. In general, none is better than the other. Both have advantages and disadvantages so it might make sens to disable one or the other to see which one is better for you.

 

Nothing happens when tapping on Connect

This could happen if you have enabled the “Auto connect” setting for a certain Radio enabled but that Radio is no longer available under the same IP Address. If the “Auto connect” setting is enabled, the “Available Radio” list will be skipped (which is the purpose of the Auto connect function). To get the “Available Radio” list back, just open the Settings tap and tap on the “Available Radio” button. Now, you can either double-check the settings for the Radio and / or unset the “Auto connect” setting for the Radio.

App disconnects or quits – Issues with IC-705

Even though this should not happen, it can happen if the network connection is not good. Please read the next point for a solution.

Stuttering Audio or poor Radio responsiveness

As all data to and from the Transceiver will be transferred over the network, it is essential that your network is healthy. While this is easy to achieve with a LAN connection, it may be tricky for the WiFi connection of an IC-705.

To see, if there are any connection issues, use the Network Stats Tool. It should not show an error percentage higher than 0.05 %.

If there is a higher error percentage only for the TX Packets, maybe you have EMC / RFI issues. Try to lower your power and see if this helps.

If you have a higher error rate for an IC-705, most likely you need to move your Icom closer to your WiFi access point or other other way round.

If you are experiencing just temporary audio drops, you can increase the output buffer size in the top (gear Icon) Audio menu.

Another common cause for WiFi issues is bluetooth. Try (at least temporary) to turn off bluetooth on your iPad to see if that makes a difference.

Connection error

If the App would quit unexpectedly or forced-quit, it had no chance to tell the Transceiver that the connection should be closed. The Icom Transceivers may take some time until they got aware of a cut connection. In such a case it may happen that you see an error message when trying to re-connect.

In that case, just wait and try again a bit later. If it still doesn’t work, try to power-cycle your Icom.

In some cases, even if it looks as you did wait long enough and you see the Waterfall, it might have been too early and it can happen that certain data can not be received from the Transceiver. Sometimes, for instance, the Frequency is missing. In that case, disconnect again using the Disconnect button and re-connect.

No TX signal / audio in SSB – which microphone do I have to select?

To use your iPad or a connected Headset, you need to select iPad as microphone source. For this, long-tap the Mic button (which is the button below Tune). Next, select iPad. (Only if you want to use a microphone which is directly connected to your Transceiver, select something different here).

In the audio settings (gear Icon at the top) ensure that the Mic threshold slider is moved to the far left.

If you like to use a Headset, connect your Headset (e.g. pair it via Bluetooth) and open the Audio settings (gear Icon) and tap on the Icon right of  “Audio device:”. Now, select your headset.

Next, the Mic button needs to be enabled. Just tap on the button once to enable or disable it.

You should now see the level meter indicating microphone audio while speaking. If that’s not the case, try to increase the Mic. level slider.

Double check if Data is not enabled for the mode you like to operate. You can double check if Data is enabled by looking at the mode button. If it shows -D after the mode name (e.g. USB-D), Data is enabled. To disable the data mode, just tap once on the mode button and de-select DATA.

Now you should be able to TX in phone mode (SSB,AM,FM).

If you would enable “Show TX” for the Waterfall (long-tapping the Center button, selecting Settings… and enabling Show TX) you should see your own TX signal in the waterfall. If you like, you can now adjust the Mic Threshold slider in the Audio (gear) settings so that ambient sound does not cause RF submission. For this, just slide the threshold slider slowly to the right (while being quiet) until RF emission stops.

To use VOX along with the iPad, first tap once on the VOX button to enable it then long-tap on the VOX button to adjust Level and Delay according your needs.

After using the App, I can no longer use the Radio

There are only a few settings that are changed when the App connects to your Radio in order to let the App use the Radio. One of these settings is the Microphone selection. When using the iPad as Microphone source (by tapping long on the Mic button and select iPad) you will have to change that back before disconnecting if you want to continue to use the locally connected Microphone.

However, under the Radio settings (the tab left from the Settings tab) you can instruct the App to revert such settings back to the desired values upon disconnection. Here, you can decide if the App should select back your locally connected Mic (or USB).

Too high (or low) audio gain / ALC

You may experience a too high or too low audio gain, especially when working in FT8. This gain depends on your particular Transceiver and might be adjusted for best performance. You could either adjust this so called “LAN Mod Level” using the Set Menu on your Radio or more conveniently from inside the App by using the Radio Settings tab. Before adjusting the LAN input gain slider, you can turn on the ALC meter by long-tapping on the Power meter and select ALC. While transmitting (e.g. by calling CQ in the FT8 tool) you can adjust the slider so that it is right before the ALC value doesn’t increase anymore.

 

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