SDR Control for Icom


SDR Control for Icom – Software user guide



1.General

SDR-Control for Icom is a native macOS App to operate your Icom Transceiver via network.

Operate in any Mode

You can operate in SSB using the mac internal Microphone or a external Microphone or Headset connected to your Mac or locally from your Icom as usual.

You can operate in CW using the integrated Keyer.

You can operate in FT8/FT4, RTTY and other modes using the integrated encoding and decoding tools. Operating in these mode no longer requires external Software and cables. But if you wish, you can still use such external software because this App also integrates a CAT Server.

Local or Remote

SDR-Control also support 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.

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. This may follow in later versions depending on demand.

The App runs on any Mac that supports at least macOS 10.15 (Catalina). There is no relevant RAM or Hard-drive space requirement but a fast CPU would be an advantage. The App runs natively on both Intel and M1 Macs. Even though the App runs on Catalina, Big Sur (macOS 11) or Monterey (macOS 12) is recommended as the App will take advantage of some features only available in these newer macOS versions.

If you have purchased the App once from the AppStore (thank you!) you can run it on several additional Mac’s 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 Macs.

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.

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 click on Connect. The Radio chooser will appear with an empty list. Now click 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 click Ok 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 click on Connect.

NOTE: If you have just one Radio or want to automatically connect to a particular Radio without seeing the radio chooser screen, you can tick the Auto Connect checkbox 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 press the Option key while clicking on Connect. This way you will see the Radio Chooser window again and can change the Auto Connect option. Alternatively, you can also reach this screen from the App Preferences.

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.

Button right and left clicking

Most buttons have two possibilities. They can be (regular) right clicked to quickly change a certain setting 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 can also be left clicked (using the secondary mouse button) to open additional settings related to the button. Fir instance, if you left click the aforementioned FIL button, detail filter options can be maintained:

Similar additional popups will be displayed by right-clicking 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, right-clicking 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 right-clicking this button. To use your local Mac (either the internal Mac microphone or a USB Microphone or Headset connected to your Mac) as microphone source, chose Mac as selection.

PLEASE NOTE: When selecting Mac, 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 Mac as microphone source.

Right-clicking 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.

Right-clicking on the right VFO button (VFO B or Sub) offers the option to turn off the second VFO.

Right-clicking 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 preference 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 above this slider let you chose the Waterfall mode like Center, Scroll-F, Scroll-C or Hold.

In addition, right-clicking this button 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.

Like 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.

This Window can be used to fine-tune the VFO Frequency:

This Window can be used to send CW:

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

6.Settings and Preferences

For the App, you can maintain two types of Settings. First, there are general Preferences 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.

Also General App settings like Dark Mode behavior, Mouse or Track-pad sensitivity, settings regarding displaying Spots in the Waterfall can be maintained here under Preferences.

You will also find a separate Tab “Information & Support” where you can find the “Contact Developer” button in case you have questions or issues.

Radio settings

In addition to the Prefences, there are Radio specific settings which only applies to the Radio you are connected to. For this reason, this menu is only available when connected.

Audio Settings

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

From here, you can decide where audio (speaker output) should go to and where microphone input should come from.

PLEASE NOTE: These settings are independent from the general Mac Audio settings. This way, you can keep your Mac Audio settings as they are and let system sounds come out of the internal speaker but let Radio audio go to a separate speaker. So for this App you would never need to make any changes to the System Audio and instead only use this settings screen.

If you don’t have a microphone available (like on a Mac Mini where there is no internal Microphone), you can un-check “Enable Input Device”.

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.

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:

  • Move the waterfall to change the Center Frequency in Center Mode. Just click somewhere at the waterfall, hold the mouse down and move to the left or right
  • Click-hold-and-move the VFO Frequency in Scroll-C or Scroll-F mode.
  • Double-click somewhere on the waterfall to move the currently active VFO to that frequency
  • Use the Mouse Scroll wheel to adjust the frequency
  • Click 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. By clicking on the left or right side of the thumb, tuning will continue up and down until clicking somewhere else.

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 Mac and use it for frequency tuning and more
  • Assign keyboard keys (see Tools section of the App) for additional tuning options

 

8.Memories

Memories can be maintained, exported and imported from the Radio → Memories menu.

By double-clicking a line, you can enter or alter all available memory fields.

The available entries of this detail view depends on the Radio. Also, the number of available channels and memory Groups. For the IC-9700 there are basically no separate Memory Groups available because each of the three Groups are always already dedicated for a certain band.

To Export and Import Memories, just hit the top Utilities button.

Using this feature, you can exchange Memory settings between different Icom Transceivers. All fields that are not available in a certain Transceiver will just be ignored.

Import and Export always applies to selected Group so you can use Import and Export also to transfer the contents of one Group to another.

When maintaining memories, it is important to only use values valid for the Transceiver. For instance, if you would enter a Frequency, that is not supported by a Transceiver, such a Memory will not be accepted by the Transceiver.

You can use the supplemental Memory Window to quickly access or maintain 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.

9.Macros

It is possible to create CW-, RTTY- and Voice Macros. For maintaining your Macros, use the Radio → Macros sub-menus.
For easy access, the Macro Names will be used in the supplemental Macros view as follows:

This view always displays the correct Macros for the corresponding mode.

You can also assign keyboard keys for each Macro using the Tools → Keyboard menu:
Macros can use placeholder variables that will be replaced before sending. The available placeholder variables are listed in the attachment of this manual.

The assignment of RTTY Macros is similar to CW Macros. For Voice Macros you can record a message using the internal or attached Mac microphone. If you are using macOS Big Sur or newer, you can also use a Voice Synthesizer to generate Voice Macros.

 

10.Tools

Under the Tools menu, 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.Keyboard Key Assignment

It is possible to assign Keyboard keys to Transceiver and App functions in the same way as it is possible to assign functions for MIDI controllers (see next chapter).

This way, you can not only assign keys for PTT or CW keys but also to change Band, Auto-tune, start the FT8 Tool. Change Frequency and much more.

The keyboard assignment feature can be opened from the Tools Menu (Tools → Keyboard).

On both screens, you can enable or disable Keyboard shortcuts.

The Keyboard Mapping Editor will be used to assign individual Keyboard Keys to individual Radio or App functions.

Click on the + Icon at the top to add a new Keyboard assignment.

To assign a new Key, first click on the squared field next to the “Key:” prompt.

Now, hit the key on the Keyboard for which you like to assign a function. You can also use the Shift, Control, Option and Command keys in any combination along with a Letter, Number or Function Key.

PLEASE NOTE: Some keys can not be assigned because they are already assigned by the System or the App. In this case you will see an according message. Please also note that if you would assign keys like letters, number or arrows, you will have difficulties entering data in entry fields of the App. For this reason, better use such keys only in combination with Control,Option or Command.

Next, click on the Assign button to select the Function.

10.2.Midi Controller

Under Tools → MIDI Controller, you can configure so called MIDI Controllers such as the “Behringer CMD Micro MIDI Controller” for use with the Radio.

In addition to the CMD Micro, the following controller will be supported:

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

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

The MIDI Controller needs to be connected to your Mac using a USB Cable. Once connected, you can assign functions to Keys, Knobs and LEDs by using the Midi Controller Tool.

Use the Device selection to select the MIDI Controller you would like to use. Select the type of Controller using the Compatibility selection. If the list doesn’t contain the type of controller you are using, try the different types and see which one works best.

You can use the Standard / Default CMD Micro Key mapping or you assign your own keys by clicking “Edit Mapping”.

Ensure that you have checked the “Enabled” checkbox and the Status shows “Connected” before editing your mapping.

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, double-click this line or click Edit.

Next, click on “Assign” to get a list of possible assignments. There are different assignments for Buttons and Controls. Buttons can trigger or toggle a setting whereas Controls can change values.

Select the desired Transceiver action and click on done.

LEDs need to be added in a slightly different way. First click on the (+) Icon at the top and select LED.

Now, you either need to enter the code for the LED on your MIDI Controller manually or you can try to hit a button which has an LED included. For some controllers, the code for the LED is identical to the code for the button but that’s not the case for all Controllers so you might have to experiment with different code numbers or get the codes from the manual. Once a code has been entered, you can hit Test so see if the desired LED turns on and off. Finally, you can click on Assign to decide when the LED should be turned on by the Radio.

10.3.Network Stats

This Tool can help to analyze network issues.

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

Also the IP Addresses of your Radio and your Mac will be displayed.

Internet RTT is the Rount-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 (0.1%) 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 Clear button at the top can be used to set the error counter to zero which is useful to see if there are any changes after changing some settings.

10.4.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 SDR-Control → Preferences 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.

By using the corresponding checkbox, you can make each Band Plan visible or not and by using the Settings menu you can select, whether or not, the Band limits and modes should 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).

 

10.5.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.

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 under SDR-Control → Preference → Ham-Radio. 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.

10.6.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 Panadapter 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-click on a line in this list, the Transceiver will tune to the particular frequency of this spot.

If you select a line and click on Details (or right click and select Show Details), you will see more details about the Spotter and Call.

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

As stated at the bottom of the screen, you can not only enter a single but multiple values in the fields, separated by comma.

At the top of this screen, you can either enable or disable these filters.

The Settings (gear) Icon 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 all current DX-Cluster entries on a Map by clicking the icon at the top.

You can also click on “Show on Map” on the details view of a DX-Cluster Spot line. From here, you can also see your distance and bearing to the Spot.

10.7.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.

It may take up to 10 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 selecting a Mode and Time at the top.

You can also get more details about a spot by right clicking the line or selecting a line and clicking on details at the top.

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

 

10.8.Alerts

Alerts can be used to ring an alarm and highlight entries in the Logbook, DX-Cluster, FT8/FT4 or RTTY tools according to certain criteria.

You can maintain different Alert settings. Use the Add alert button to add a new setting which can be maintained in the Alert Details section.

Below the title, you can enter various criteria for an alert.

You can enter multiple terms or numbers in most fields (e.g. multiple prefixes) separated by comma (,) which means either of these prefixes will ring the alert.

If you use more than one criteria (e.g. prefixes and bands), all of these must match to ring the alert.

Rule of thumb: horizontal = ‘OR’, vertical = ‘AND’

In the example above this means that the alert will ring if any of the countries (DXCC 5,6,9…) will be heard on 20 or 40 Meter.

At the top of the Alert tool, you can select a color which will be used to highlight alerts and the sound which will be played. You can enable or disable all alerts at once or for each individual tool. Once alerts are on, you can also quickly disable / enable alerts from inside each tool using the alerts toolbar Icon.

The logbook will not cause any alert sound and only highlights matching entries. This can be useful to debug your alert settings as you can see which logbook entries are matching your criteria.

10.9.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 or export your log in cabrillo format for contests.

After starting the Logbook tool you will see your last logs in reverse order (last at top).

You can click on the column headers to change the sorting of the list. Clicking again will reverse sorting.

To edit an already logged QSO, just select the line and click on edit or double-click the 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.

There are several settings for customizing the logbook.

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

If you are using another Logging Program simultaneously which supports UDP log broadcast such as N1MM or Log4OM, you can enable UDP Broadcast submission.

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.

Utilities

The Utilities button will allow to Import or Export your logbook.

Complete logbook data

The Complete logbook data feature will go through each single logbook entry and add missing data automatically based on the following settings:This way, you can populate Names, QTHs Country etc. of your QSO partner automatically after you have finished several QSOs. If you select None as “Update using:”, just missing fields like an empty Band field (if the frequency was entered) or other obviously missing fields will be completed.

Mass changes

To change many fields at once, for example add the contest ID to all QSOs of the past two days, you can use the Mass change utility.

Only the ticked (checked) changes will be applied when hitting Apply changes. To apply the changes only to certain logbook entries, use the filter. For the comment field, you can use a + prefix to let the text after the + be appended to existing commends. A – sign will do the opposite and remove any occurrences of the text after a -. If no + or – is used, the new commend will always override any existing comment.

From here, you can also delete the entire logbook or the filtered logbook entries. For example, if you like to remove all logbook entries older than four years, just use the date filter to filter from (e.g. 1.1.1900) to a date four years ago. After applying the filter, you should only see older log entries. Now you can use the Delete Logbook entries button in the Mass change utility to delete those old entries.

Find duplicates

The find duplicates utility can be used to identify and merge duplicate logbook entries. Entries are considered duplicate if they contain the same call-sign, band and the time of the QSO is nearly the same. The maximum time difference between duplicate QSOs can be entered in the Logbook settings. You are able to review found duplicate QSOs before letting them be merged.

Logging a QSO

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

  • From inside the Logbook Tool, click on (+) Add
  • From View menu, select “Log new QSO”
  • While the Waterfall is the active Window, press Option-Command-L
  • The FT8 Tool will open the logging Window after finishing a QSO

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

You just need to enter the Call-sign of your QSO partner and hit enter (or Tab to add or alter other fields).

QSO Confirmations (QSL)

You can submit Logged QSOs to LOTW, QRZ.com, ClubLog and eQSL.cc. QSO confirmations can be received from LOTW and QRZ.com.

Please note: Before you submit any QSO to any of these services, please double-check if you have entered all necessary information under SDR-Control → Preferences and the HAM-Radio tab. Especially the section “Logging information” is important because some of this information will be submitted along with your log.

The QSL feature can be opened by clicking the QSL icon at the top of the Logbook screen.

After clicking this icon, the following QSL screen will open:

There is a tab for each supported QSL Service. Each Service (except Paper Log) requires credentials to be able to use the service.

Preferences

To enter the credentials, select the corresponding tab for the Service for which you like to enter your credentials and click on the Preferences button.

Depending on the Service, you have to enter different information.

For instance, for QRZ.com you need to get your QRZ.com API Key from your QRZ.com website. To retrieve this key, login to the QRZ.com website, select My Logbook (under the right button with your Call-sign) and click on Settings on the right. Under QRZ Logbook API you can reveal your API Key by clicking on Show. This API Key needs to be pasted to the Preferences screen for QRZ.com. Please note: In order to use this feature, you will need a QRZ.com subscription. For details, please see the QRZ.com website.

For LOTW, the preferences screen looks like this:

Here, you will have to upload a so called .P12 file and you need to enter your LOTW website login credentials. The required LOTW .P12 file needs to be created using the TQSL software provided by LOTW.

After starting the TQSL software, you need to select the Callsign Certificates Tab and select the Certificate in the tQSL Certificates tree.

Next you need to click on “Save the Callsign Certificate…” on the right side. This will prompt for a directory and file name to save the file. This step can be performed on a Windows Computer or Mac. Back in SDR-Control LOTW QSL Preferences, just hit the “Load .P12 file” button and browse to the same location where you did store the file.

Please note: LOTW information will be stored in the local Mac Keychain. For this reason, macOS may prompt you to enter the password for your Mac. Please don’t confuse this password with your LOTW Password.

For CloudLog, you need to enter the Address of your CloudLog server including http:// or https:// at the beginning. If your CloudLog server uses a special port (other than 80 or 443) you can add the port number as usual at the end of the Address separated by a colon. You will also have to enter the Station ID and API Key. For more information please see the CloudLog website.

Send new QSLs

If there are “Unsent QSLs” (QSOs you have logged but not yet submitted), you can hit the “Send new QSL now” button which will submit these outstanding QSOs to the selected Service.

Check for new QSLs

For LOTW and QRZ.com it is possible to retrieve the QSO confirmations of other HAMS for the QSOs in your logbook. For this, just hit the “Check for new QSLs” button.

Download QSOs

For LOTW and QRZ.com you can also download all QSOs stored on these services. This can be useful if you have lost some or even all QSOs in your Log. Once you hit that button, all QSOs will be added to your Logbook. Keep in mind that LOTW and QRZ.com will not maintain all possible QSO fields. After downloading QSOs this way you may have several duplicates in your log. To clean up your log use the “Find duplicates” feature under Utilities.

QSLs in Logbook

You can highlight all QSOs for which you have received a QSO confirmation by selecting LOTW and/or QRZ.com under QSL in the Logbook Settings.

In addition, for each QSO in the log, there is a QSL tab on the QSO Details screen.

Using this screen, you can also tick or un-tick QSO confirmations manually (e.g. for Paper QSL cards you have sent).

If you want to mark multiple QSOs at once, you can use the Filter feature of the Logbook to filter all QSOs you like to change and use the “Mass change” Utility.

 

10.10.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.

Under Settings, Flip view you can decide of these parts should be left / right or top / bottom.

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)
  • Click on RX and wait until the list fills
  • Double-click 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 left side (or the top half, if you switched to the flip view under settings) 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 callsign 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 click on the RX button in the upper left corner.

The Frequency selection

If you click 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 under SDR-Control → Preferences.

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 click 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. Clicking the Filter Icon will toggle activation of the filter with immediate effect to the list below.

Erase

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

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

Clicking on an entry of the list

If you click 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-click 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 click 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 clicking (or double clicking) on an entry from the receiving list, this button will be set automatically (to the opposite of the calling station you clicked). 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 click on a line in the receive list, the frequencies will be taken over from the line you have clicked.

However, you can manually enter different values or use the buttons =TX which will use the current TX Frequency as TX Frequency or the =RX button which will do the opposite.

If the blue Lock button shows a closed lock, TX and RX frequencies will always be equal, which is the regular operating mode.

However, if the receiving station can’t hear you, you can switch to a different TX frequency. For this, just hit the lock Icon to change it to the unlocked state. You can then either enter another frequency or more conveniently select the TX frequency from the Panadapter as explained before under Panadapter.

DX

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

Report

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.

General 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 by clicking on the Filter Icon of the Receiving window.

 

10.11.RTTY

The App integrates a RTTY decoder / encoder to operate in RTTY mode.

Due to limitations of the Icom RTTY Mode, the App doesn’t use the RTTY features of the Icom Transceiver. It even implements it’s own RTTY encoder and decoder which even decodes much better than the integrated decoder.

Selecting RTTY from the tools menu will display the RTTY main screen.

Upper blue RX part

In the upper (blue) RX part of this screen you can maintain all parameters for operating in RTTY. Below, all received text will be displayed.

The Freq and Preset selections are for convenience. The Freq selection will switch to a certain band to the segment where RTTY is commonly used and will change all settings necessary for operating in RTTY. This list also contains some frequencies of known Weather stations which are operating in RTTY. The preset selection contains a list of common Mark / Shift and Baud settings. Instead of using these selections, you cal also always tune to the desired frequency or change the Baudrate etc. manually.

Clicking the RX button will start receiving. The RTTY tool always uses the currently active slice. Once clicked, the active slice will be changed to the DAX channel selected at the top of this window and all additional parameters like mode, mark and space frequency etc. will be automatically set for this slice.

Below the blue area all received characters will be displayed.

Lower red TX part

By clicking on the TX button, everything that has been entered in the below text field will be transmitted. Instead of using the TX button, you can also check the Auto TX checkbox. In this case, transmission will begin shortly after something has been typed and will automatically end if you stop typing.

Operating in RTTY

After tuning to the desired RTTY frequency using the regular panadapter frequency tuning options and clicking the RX button, all incoming text will be displayed. Depending on the signal strength it is possible that some garbage will also be displayed.

If a call-sign is detected, it will be displayed in a different color. A blue color indicates a new call. Call-signed that are already in your logbook will be displayed in gray. Your own call-sign will be displayed in green.

If you click on such a colored call-sign it will be copied to the DX: field for logging and macros (see further below). You can also right-click such a call-sign to get more information like country, DX-, ITU-Zone etc.

All text that has been sent will be displayed here as well in red color.

If you hit the LOG button, the Log Entry view will be displayed to log your RTTY QSO.

You can click the Erase button at the top once, to clear the lower TX text entry. If double-click the Erase button, the RX section will be cleared too.

Using Macros

You can maintain separate RTTY Macros by clicking the Macros button at the top of the RTTY screen.

From here, similar to CW or Voice Macros, you can maintain a Macro title, a hotkey and the text which should be sent if the Macro is called.

To uses these Macros, just use the View Macros Menu to display the Macros panel. This panel always displays the right Macros (CW-, Voice-, RTTY) for the mode of the currently active slice.

Like for CW or Text-To-Speech Voice Macros, also RTTY Macros can use variables like {CALL} which are replaced before being sent.

If you either hit the hot-key (if maintained) or click the button, the Macro text with possible substitutions of the variables will be added to the Text entry below the red TX area just as if you would have typed in this text. This text will get sent, once you hit the TX button or immediately if you have checked the Auto TX checkbox.

You can also right-click a Macro button to see, what would actually be sent in case you don’t remember exactly what’s behind a certain Macro or to see how variables will be substituted.

10.12.HF Fax

This Tool allows to receive, display and store HF Fax or Weather-Fax (WeFax) transmissions often used for submitting weather maps and weather information.

To use this tool, first either tune to the desired frequency manually and select “Manual” for the Freq: selection or select one of the predefined entries of the list.

For these preselected entries, values for RX Offset, LSB and Inverted will be set automatically.

Hitting the RX button will start receiving. If the “Auto Start” checkbox is on, the Tool will wait for the synchronization signal until anything is displayed. Otherwise receiving starts immediate.

Using the slider at the top, you can adjust the image offset if the start of the image has not been detected automatically.

The clock adjust entry can be used to adjust the slant of the image due to a clock inaccuracy.

The Erase button will clear the received image.

The Save button can be used to save the received image as .png file.

If you check the Auto save checkbox, you will be prompted for a directory, where to store all received images separately.

 

11.External Software - CAT Server

Besides using the integrated FT8/FT4, RTTY and HF-Fax tools, it is also possible to use other external software.

In the past, CAT Cables were and are still being used with legacy hardware Radios. It will be used to exchange information like the current frequency between a Radio and a Software or to control the Mode and even the PTT.

This App can emulate such a CAT cable as network interface which means that CAT commands are to be transmitted over the network. That also means that the other Application to send or receive CAT commands can either be on the same Mac or even another PC or Mac.

To maintain these virtual CAT interfaces, open the Radio → CAT Server menu.


The App supports the following three CAT “Languages”:

  • Icom CAT
  • Kenwood TS-2000 and
  • RigCtrl / Hamlib.

It depends on the other Application, which of these “Languages” you have to choose. You may need to experiment and try different settings and see which one works best.

You can use up to two virtual CAT Cable interfaces at the same time.

For each interface you need to enter a Port. The value you have to enter here depends on the other Software which sometimes allows also to enter a Port number manually or it may use a certain fixed and predefined port number. That port number needs to be identical to the port number to be entered here.

The other Software will also require you to enter an IP Address for the destination. If the Software is running on the same Mac, you can enter 127.0.0.1 which always stands for the local device regardless which individual IP address your Mac would have. Alternatively, and for Software running on other devices, you will need to enter the IP Address of your Mac. For your convenience, this IP Address is displayed at the bottom of the CAT Cable settings screen.

Once you enabled one of the two interfaces you will either see a red warning next to the “Status:” line telling you that a certain setting is wrong or missing otherwise you will see “Waiting”.

Now you can start your external software to establish the CAT connection to this App. In case it was successful, you should see “Connected” here.

Audio Interface

Whereas the CAT interface is being used to exchange Radio information and settings between an Application and a radio, you also need to divert Audio between the App and the other software.

For this you will need a so called audio-pass-through driver which simply bridges audio between two audio interfaces.

There are several solutions available for this. There is, for instance, the free of charge Blackhole driver from Existential audio: existential.audio but the ideal driver in combination with SDR-Control for macOS is the Loopback driver rogueamoeba.com/loopback.

PLEASE NOTE: I have arranged with Rogue Amoeba that users of SDR-Control will get a 25% discount. Please contact me using the “Contact Developer” button under SDR-Control → Preferences → Information & Support for a coupon. (I am not associated with Rogue Amoeba and don’t benefit from the coupon).

The Loopback driver is most easy to use. You can create two separate Virtual devices, name them “Extern to Radio” and “Radio to Extern” so you don’t confuse the drivers and know which one to select on the Radio side and on the external App side.

Below is an example. This would be the virtual driver for Audio from another App to SDR-Control:

And this would be the virtual driver for Audio from SDR-Control to an external App:

As you can see above, Loopback also allows to pass Audio on to the Speaker so you can also monitor the receiving signal.

Next you can select these devices in your external software like WSJT-X:

Or fldigi for example like here:

Finally, you also need to select these drivers in SDR-Control audio settings as follows:

PTT

The best way to trigger PTT from your external software would be to use CAT commands. However, some programs don’t support this. In this case, you can use the integrated VOX option.

12.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.

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 Mac 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 Mac. 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.

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.

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.

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.

Macro Variables

You can use variables like {CALL} in CW Macros, Voice (Text-to-Speech) Macros and RTTY 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
{CALLSPELL} Like {CALL} only that the call-sign will be spelled (only useful for Voice Macros)
{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
{APP} Will be replaced by the App Name

13.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.

One possibility is, that your Mac 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 Mac. You can find this out by opening the Network Stats Tool (Tools → Network Stats). An IP Address consists of three numbers, separated by a . (dot). Both IP Addresses must 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 Transveiver
  • Wrong router or Mac settings
  • Cable issues or something else that prevents the Radio from connecting to your network
  • 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.

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 0.5 %.

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

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

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

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 like this, when you try to re-connect:

In that case, just do what the message says 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.

Some Windows or Menus are cut and not fully visible

The app provides a lot of information and therefore it takes advantage of a good screen resolution. All Macs are offering enough screen resolution for this App but sometimes a lower resolution has been selected. To change this, open the Apple menu → System Preferences and select the Displays Icon.

From here, you need to select Scaled and More Space.

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