SmartSDR for Mac

SmartSDR™ for Mac – Software user guide


SmartSDR for Mac is based on SmartSDR for Windows and SmartSDR for iOS. This Manual does not cover or repeat things that are almost identical to SmartSDR for Windows. Also terms like Panadapter, Slice etc. are not explained.

For this, please consult the excellent FlexRadio SmartSDR for Windows SmartSDR Users Guide which can be found here:

This Manual mainly covers things that are different or new to SmartSDR for Windows as well as general usage hints that only applies to this App.

For those who already read the Manual and just like to read what’s new in the most recent update, all sections covering changes are marked as follows: UPDATE V2.9

If you prefer a printed version of this Manual, just click on the small PDF Icon on the first page top right corner to download a PDF file.

PLEASE NOTE: In case of issues with the App, you will find a lot of possible reasons and solutions in the last chapter “Common issues” of this Manual.


You need to have a FlexRadio Signature Series Rig such as the Flex-6300, 6400, 6400M, 6500, 6600, 6600M, 6700 or 6700R device.
To run the App, you need a Mac running at least macOS 11.5 (Big-Sur) or newer (Monterey). There is no relevant RAM or Hard drive requirement, but a fast CPU would be an advantage if you like to use multiple windows at the same time.

Your Radio needs to be connected with a LAN cable to your local Network. Your Mac can be connected to your local Network using a LAN Cable or WiFi.

PLEASE NOTE: The App runs with any FlexRadio firmware version 1,2 or 3. Different to SmartSDR for Windows, there is no need for a special App version for a certain Radio firmware version.

Remote access

To use this App from outside your home Network, the App supports SmartLink™ which is a technology and feature introduced by FlexRadio exactly for this purpose.

For further details about SmartLink™ please read the corresponding chapter further below.

3.Using the App

After starting the App, you will see the main window. To connect to your Radio, just click inside this window or at the “Connect” button at the top. Next you should see the Radio chooser where the Demo Device and your Radio should be listed.

To connect, just click on the Radio in the list. If another client (somebody else) is already connected to your Radio or if you have a M-Model where the front panel is already or still connected to the Radio, you will get a message like this:

In this case, you can select “Connect” which will connect you to the Radio in addition to the other client. Or you can force disconnecting the other client from that Radio by hitting the “Disconnect” button. In case the maximum number of clients are already connected to the Radio, you can not connect in addition and will only see the option to disconnect either of these clients.

The option Auto connect can be used to speed up the connection process for instance if you are only using one and the same Radio. In this case, just check the Auto connect checkbox after selecting your Radio. Next time, when you hit Connect, the App will automatically connect to this Radio. If you ever want to change the Auto connect setting, just head to SmartSDR → Preferences and the Communication tab and click on the Available Radios button to see the Radio selection screen again.

3.1.Main Window

Once connected to your Radio, you should see a screen like this:

In the upper half, you can see the so called panadapter (1) which visually represents the radio frequency spectrum. Below you see the waterfall (2) which turns the panadapter into a time-based visual representation of the spectrum.

The slice flag (3) represents a so-called slice which can be seen as an individual Receiver on a certain frequency range of the whole spectrum. You can have as many slices as your Radio permits.

How to maintain slices and the various possibilities for tuning frequencies is described further below in a separate chapter.

3.2.Settings and preferences

Your Radio and this App are very powerful and feature rich but that also means there are a lot of settings available.

Sometimes, you may feel lost in all the available options, especially if something is not working as expected. The following should give you a better idea on where to look for a certain setting.

There are basically the following sections for Settings:

1.The top Audio Menu (gear Icon)

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This section deals with everything regarding local audio on your Mac. The gear Icon will show a screen where you can change the Input and Output device and change additional audio settings.

2. The SmartSDR → Preferences… Menu

[su_column size=”1/3″][/su_column]These settings are without exception App related (and not Radio related) settings. From here, you can decide how to connect to your Radio, assign CW keys, check for App Data updates and so on.

Please note: “Preferences” has been renamed to “Settings” when using macOS 13 (Ventura)
3. The Radio → FLEX-6xxx settings Menu

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This menu only appears after you are connected to your Radio because the settings here are solely related to your Radio and they are even stored inside the Radio. From here, you can obtain information about your Radio or amend things like max transmit power, digital filters, backup the configuration of your Radio or even perform firmware updates.

4. The Radio Controls panel

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From this Radio control panel you can control the most frequently used settings of your Radio. You can also see and monitor the most important parameters such as RF Power or SWR. This panel is almost identical throughout all SmartSDR Apps on different platforms. Most of the controls here are just shortcuts and the same settings, sometimes with additional options, can be found under the slice settings (see below).

5. Slice Flag and Slice Control panel

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From here, you can control everything which is related to a single Slice (receiver). You can either click on parts of the slice flag. Or you can click on the Frequency to open the Slice control panel.

6. Left panadapter menu

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This menu is attached to each panadapter and can be opened and closed using the arrow button at the top. Some buttons are convenient shortcuts but especially the Disp menu is important for maintaining the pandapater display such as waterfall speed or colors.

7. Additional Radio Menus

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For more comprehensive and dedicated settings like Memories, CW Macros, USB Cable settings and so on, there are individual menus under the Main Radio menu. These settings are also Radio related, so these menus also only appear if you are connected to the Radio.

Details of these menus and setting screens are described further below in individual chapters.

In case you got lost or messed up any of these settings, you have the following possibilities:

  1. For App related settings, go to SmartSDR → Settings → Extended tab and hit “Restore default settings”. This will revert most of the App settings back to their default values. Only things like SmartLink or HamQTH or credentials are kept. After this, it is recommended to restart the App.
  2. For all settings which are stored inside your Radio, you can Restore the settings using the Radio → FLEX-6xxx → Radio menu and the “Restore Configuration” button. Of course, this requires that you would previously backed up your configuration.

3.3.What to do first

When you are starting the App and connect to your Radio first time, it is recommended to go through a few settings so you won’t get annoyed about missing or wrong settings later on when you don’t need it.

  • First, go to the SmartSDR → Preferences Menu and select the HAM-Radio Tab and enter your IARU Region, your Callsign, location and maintain your HamQTH and credentials, if available.
  • Next, after connecting to your Radio, open the Radio → FLEX-6xxx Settings menu and also enter (or double check) your Callsign and the Nickname you like to use for your Radio.
  • Finally, backup your Radio settings using the Radio → FLEX-6xxx → Radio menu and the “Backup Configuration” button which will help if you would later on mess up some Radio settings.

You may also want to browse through the App Settings and Radio preferences to familiarize with the various options.

3.4.Audio Controls at the top

Clicking the speaker icon will mute/un-mute all slices. The volume slider next to this icon will control the global volume of all slices.

Clicking the gear icon at the top will open the Audio settings. From here, you can select which Audio device should be used as output (speaker) or input (microphone) device.

If you are experiencing dropouts you can increase the Output Buffer size but that will also add some latency.

If you select the “Use Radio output” checkbox, only the Speaker or Headphone physically connected to your Radio will be used instead of your Mac.

PLEASE NOTE: If your Mac doesn’t have an internal Microphone (like the Mac Mini) you will get an error message once you connect to your Radio. To prevent this message, either connect and select a Microphone via USB or Bluetooth. If you don’t want to use a Microphone at all, just check the “Listen only mode” checkbox to prevent further error messages.

3.5.SmartSDR → Preferences... Menu

As mentioned earlier, these preferences are solely related to the App and not the Radio.

Most of the options here are self-explanatory. However, the following options are worth to be explained:


If you only connect to your Radio from inside your home network (either by LAN or Wifi) you can leave the Connection type setting to Local. If you want to connect to your Radio from another network, you need to setup SmartLink as described further below and can set your Connection type either to “SmartLink” or “both”. Leaving the Connection type to “local” will speed up the connection process for local Radios.

For local connections, the LAN/WiFi Mode should normally be set to “Discover”. Only in very special network situations where your Radio can not be discovered, you may want to change this setting either to Scan or Fixed IP.

Enable iCloud

Enable iCloud under the General Tab will enable sharing some settings as well as the logbook with other SmartSDR for iOS or Mac Apps. The shared settings are the settings under the “HAM-Radio” tab so you don’t have to enter these settings again if you already did so with SmartSDR for iOS for instance.

Extended Settings

Some of the “Extended Settings” are useful in case of connection issues. The last chapter Common issues is therefore referencing to some of these settings.


Spots are callsigns or information displayed inside the panadapter. From here, you can select which information you want to see. Using the Spot location slider you can control the vertical position of these spots so that they remain visible depending on your panadapter settings.

Information & Support

Data updates are updates for databases such as the included callsign prefix database for instance. Such databases are updated from time to time by so called data updates which are easier to distribute than complete App updates. From time to time you will see a message informing about the availability of such a data update where you can either perform the update or postpone the download. The “Check for Data Update” button under “Information & Support” can be used if you previously postponed an update or want to check for an immediate update.

3.6.The Radio → FLEX-6xxx settings Menu


This menu only appears after you are connected to your Radio and the settings here are solely related to your Radio and they are even stored inside the Radio.

Most of the settings are self-explanatory and also explained in the main manual for the Radio.

On the last tab “Radio” of this settings screen, there are some special features.

Firmware Update

From here, you can check and update (or even downgrade) your Radio firmware. By clicking on the “Check for Firmware update” button, you will get screen like this:

This list contains all available Firmware versions, even older. The Column “Downloaded” indicates if the Firmware file has already been downloaded to your Mac. This is necessary before updating that version to your Radio. The column “Installed” indicates the currently installed version. After selecting a version in the list, you can use the buttons below to either download a firmware version, remove the download from your Mac or install the version to your Radio.

PLEASE NOTE – WARNING : Especially after firmware 3.3.29 there is a risk that you may brick your Radio after installing a firmware update. This can be caused by a broken / corrupt file system on your SD Card. Please consult FlexRadio in case of related issues and have a look to FlexRadio’s release notes for a firmware update.

Backup / Restore Configuration and Memories

Using the corresponding buttons, you can Backup or Restore the whole configuration of your Radio or only Memories. The whole configuration includes all settings, Memories, Macros and Profiles of your Radio.

Install TURF File

“Current Region” indicates the country for which the Radios transmit capabilities are based. The button “Install TURF file” can be used to upload a so called TURF file changing the region. A TURF file is supplied by FlexRadio Systems or the international distributor where the radio was purchased.


A slice represents a part of the spectrum for receiving and also for transmitting.

The light blue area is called filter because this is basically what the slice is receiving. The yellow or red line indicates the center frequency of the slice whereas yellow indicates that this slice is the currently active slice.

Only one slice can be active. The controls of the “Radio controls” panel will always apply to the active slice. To change the active slice, just click on the slice flag.

Slice flag

The slice flag displays all important information about a single slice such as S-Meter reading, Mode, Antenna, Filter settings, Lock or Mute status. A red TX indicator at the top indicates that this slice is the current transmit slice which means that this frequency will be used when transmitting. The letter at the top right indicates the slice letter. Each slice is named A, B, C etc.

Clicking on any of these indicators will either toggle the option or show a separate menu for altering the options.


For instance, you can click on the TX indicator to make a slice the current transmit slice or click on the Antenna indicators to get the Antenna selection screen.

Clicking on the Frequency itself will open a separate Slice panel.

The button on the right side of the panel can be used to extend the panel in three different steps which will show more options but cover more screen. Clicking this button again will cycle through the three different sizes.

The left crossed circle here will also close a Slice.

From here, you can alter some slice parameters more comfortable and some parameters in more details as from the “Radio control” panel.

The tuning controls will be explained further down in the separate Tuning chapter details.

Slice filter

The slice filter (light blue area) can be adjusted by clicking in the lower part of the filter area of the slice or the Filter value in the slice flag.

From here, you can enter the low- and high-filter cut values manually or select one of the predefined filter settings.

Creating a new slice

A new slice can be created in different ways:

  • Click on +RX in the left panadapter menu
  • Right-Click on the Waterfall where you want to create a slice
  • Use the top Slice menu and select “Create new Slice…”

The top Slice menu can also be just to “jump” to a particular slice and make it the active slice.

Slice Options


From the Slice menu, you can open the Slice options screen.
From here, you can change the behavior of Slices. The option Change Slices frequency with Panadapter will let the Slice stay at a fixed location when moving the Panadapter. This means, the Slices will change their frequencies based on the Panadapter movement. Enabling Center Panadapter for active Slice will cause the Panadapter to be centered to the frequency of the active slice.

Always make TX Slice the active Slice will cause the TX Slice also getting selected (activated) when transmitting. Always make active Slice the TX Slice will cause that every slice which is activated (selected) to become the TX Slice.

Slice Synchronization will cause the two selected Slices always to tune to the same frequency plus or minus the given Offset in Hz. So once you would move one Slice, the other Slice will be moved accordingly. This is useful, if you want to send Audio to multiple destinations.


It is possible to use more than one panadapter which means that you can receive simultaneously on a different band even using a different antenna.

In that case, the Radio is using a different so called SCU (Spectral Capture Unit). The number of supported SCUs depends on your Radio.

To open another panadapter, use the Panadapter menu and select “Create new Panadapter…”. This will open a new window which looks similar to the first, main Window. You can now create and use slices here in the same way as before.

Each additional panadapter will get its own window. At the top of each window, you can see the panadapter number, the center frequency of the pandadapter and the slice letters of the slices contained in the panadapter as well as an TX indicator.

Only the first, main panadapter window displays the Audio controls like the mute and volume slider and the Disconnect button.

PLEASE NOTE: A panadapter uses a lot of CPU power. On slower Macs you may experience slower response times or higher CPU usage when using many panadapter windows. You can improve the situation by lowering the FPS and Rate sliders in the left Disp menu for better performance.

3.9.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:

  • Double-click somewhere on the panadapter to move the currently active slice to that frequency
  • Click-hold-and-move on the filter (light blue area) to move the slice around and thus change it’s frequency
  • Use the Mouse Scroll wheel to adjust the frequency
  • Use two fingers on a Touchpad and move up and down to adjust the frequency
Tuning from the Slice Panel:

Click on << , < , > or >> to adjust the frequency in smaller or larger steps. If you keep the buttons pressed, the speed will increase.

You can also use the circle knob for tuning.

PLEASE NOTE: For this and the other aforementioned frequency adjustment options, the Step value is regarded. You may want to alter the Step value according your requirements.

Finally, when clicking on the frequency you will be able to enter the frequency manually. The same is also possible with the frequency field in the Radio controls panel.

Use the TAB or Enter key to exit this field.

PLEASE ALSO NOTE: Under SmartSDR → Preferences → General you can decide if you want to enter frequencies in MHz or kHz.

3.10.Additional Panadapter Controls

There are the following addition Mouse or Track-pad functions, to control the panadapter:

To zoom the displayed bandwidth in or out, click on the frequency scale and move the mouse either in the direction of the center – which will squeeze the bandwidth – or move it out of the center to expand it.

To change the waterfall rate, click and move the right waterfall scale up or down.

To move the panadapter db-range, just click on the panadapter range scale and move it up or down. To increase or decrease the db-range, just hold the option button, while moving the scale.

3.11.PTT and phone mode

When in phone mode (which is either SSB or any AM or FM Mode) you can use the View → PTT menu to display (or hide) a virtual PTT button on the screen.

Hitting the PTT Button will control your transmission.

PLEASE NOTE: Under the SmartSDR → Preferences → General menu, you can use the “PTT push once mode setting”, to decide whether this button should behave as toggle or push once button.


PLEASE ALSO NOTE: You can also assign a keyboard key to trigger the PTT under SmartSDR → Preferences → Phone / CW keys.

3.12.CWX and CW Macros

When in CW mode, instead of the virtual PTT button, you can use the View → CWX menu to show or hide a CWX panel.

From here, you can enter your CW text, that you like to send. You can either enter everything you like to send and then press the “Send” button or you can check the “Live” checkbox and everything will be sent immediately once entered.

Click the cancel button or hit the ESC key to abort the submission of CW. It is also possible to assign a keyboard key for this Cancel button under Tools → Controller → Keyboard and assigning a key for “Cancel CWX”.

New in version 1.9.5

Using the << and >> buttons, you can decrease or increase the CW Speed. Alternatively, you can also hit the < or > keys on your keyboard while entering CW text.

CW Macros

You can also maintain CW Macros using the Radio → CW Macros menu.

In the “Name” column, you can enter a name for a Macro which will be displayed as title in the Macro window. You can assign a key for each macro for the activation of the Macro.

PLEASE NOTE: Only Function keys, keys of the right number pad and some additional special keys can be used for assignment.

In the last column, you can enter the desired text which should be sent for the macro.

The following keywords can be used as placeholders:

{MYCALL} will be replaced by your own callsign

{NOW} will be replaced by the current time

You can also leave the Logging window open for logging calls while doing CW and use the following placeholders which will use information you already entered in the logging window:

{CALL} will be replaced by the Callsign you entered in the logging window

{SENTRST} will be replaced by the RST Sent text you entered in the logging window

{COMMENT} will be replaced by the Comment text you entered in the logging window

{TXFREQ} or {RXFREQ} will be replaced by the current RX or TX Frequency

{TXBAND} or {RXBAND) will be replaced by the current RX or TX Band

{TIME} will be replaced by the Time you entered in the logging window

{LOG} will cause the log to be saved and cleared for the next entry

It is possible to maintain up to 11 Macros. Macros are stored inside the Radio but Macro Names and Key assignments are stored locally inside the App.

Using View → Macros you can display the CW Macro Panel:

Please note: The Macros panel will display Voice Macros instead of the CW Macros when not operating in CW Mode.


You can maintain an unlimited number of Memories. Use the Radio → Memories menu to open the Manual maintenance screen. Memories are stored inside the Radio, so you need to be connected to your Radio to maintain memories.

A Memory does not only store a frequency. It will also store the Mode, Filter settings and several additional parameters which will be recalled when selecting a Memory in the list.

To add a new Memory, click on the (+) Add Memory button or you can use the +MEM Button in the left panadapter menu.

To alter memories, just edit the values inside the list.

To recall a memory, either click on an entry in the list or use the MEM→ button in the left panadapter menu.

The list can be sorted by clicking on the column in the header.


TNF is the abbreviation for Tracking Notch Filter. TNFs can be used to filter out unwanted signals and can be created in an unlimited number for any frequency.

Creating and maintaining TNFs is similar to slices. You can right click on the panadapter and select Create TNF to create a TNF right at the mouse location.

A TNF will be displayed as green or yellow shape. You can move the TNF by clicking and moving this shape or you can click the lower part of the TNF for entering the TNF parameters manually. From here, you can also delete the TNF.

All TNFs can also be maintained using the Radio → TNF menu.

PLEASE NOTE: You can turn on or off TNFs globally. For this, use the Audio menu (gear Icon) at the top of the main screen.


If you are using Transverters to receive and transmit on different bands, outside the bands already supported by your radio, you can maintain the parameters of your transverters my using the Radio → Transverters menu.

Every transverter, added to this list will be available from the Band selection menu in the left panadapter menu. Once switched to the desired band, it will look as if your radio would natively support the transverter band.

PLEASE NOTE: If you switch to a transverter band, you may need to change your antenna selection to XVTR depending on how you connected the transverter to your radio. You may also want to limit power in the Radio → TX Band Settings for the transverter.

3.16.USB Cables

FlexRadio supports USB Cables for controlling external devices such as PAs, tuners or antenna switches. For details and the cable types, please refer to the main Radio manual.
Once a cable is connected to your Radio, it will automatically appear in the USB Cable list which can be opened from the Radio → USB Cables menu.

From here, you can set all parameters for the cable by hitting the “Details” button. Depending on the cable type and setting, you can drill down to additional setting pages.

3.17.TX Band Settings

Using the Radio → TX Band Settings menu, you can maintain a list of TX parameters per band.

From here, you can limit the maximum transmit or tune power or define states for the RCA sockets at the backside of your Radio.
Whenever you switch to a band, these parameters will be used automatically.


Profiles allow you to name and save the state of the radio and recall it later.
There are three types of profiles: GLOBAL, TRANSMIT and MIC.

Global profiles store the state of the radio including the panadapters and Slices that are open, the mode associated with each slice and all the settings for noise blankers, AGC, filters, etc. This can be thought of as a snapshot in time.

Transmit profiles save the transmitter power level, tune power level, transverter power level and the various transmitter delay parameters.

MIC profiles save a configuration for a specific microphone or audio source, including the TX filter settings, the MIC selection and level and the DEXP, PROC, DAX, VOX and EQ settings. Both Transmit and MIC profiles are automatically saved when the related controls are changed.

Using the Radio → Profiles menu → Global / Transmit or / Microphone will display all profiles stored in the currently connected Radio.

From here, you can switch to a certain profile (the “Use” button), save your current settings to the currently selected profile (“Save” button).
Global profiles can be copied (“Copy” button) whereas for Transmit and Microphone profiles you can use the “New” button to create a new Profile using a new name.

Profiles that are no longer needed can be deleted using the trash-can Icon.


MultiFLEX allows more than one operating position for each radio. In SmartSDR v3.0+, up to two operating positions may connect to a single radio. The operators may be in the same vicinity, or they may be accessing the radio via SmartLink from anywhere in the world (with internet access).

Each operating position is considered a Station and can have its own independent Slices, Panadapters, transmit settings and active profiles. This allows the sharing of a radio with two users at the same time as if they each had their own radio although there can only be one active transmitter at a time and receive resources must be shared.

Using the Radio → Multiflex menu will open a list of the currently connected stations (clients) and which one is set as the local PTT Station.

The Local PTT Station is the chosen Station to use when using a hardware PTT such as a footswitch or CW paddles. The Local PTT Station is identified with the checkmark in the “Has PTT” column.
This setting is a conflict resolver and is necessary since multiple Stations can be connected to the radio at once.

Click the “Set local PTT” button to select Local PTT for your Station.

4.External Software - CAT and DAX

This App can be used along with other external software. To interface with such software, the App uses a virtual CAT interface and a DAX interface.


CAT Cables were and are still being used with legacy hardware Radios.

A CAT cable will be used to exchange information like the current frequency between a Radio and a Software or 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 Interfaces menu.

The App supports the following three CAT “Languages”:

  • FlexRadio 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. Each one needs to be assigned to one or two Slices.

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 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.


Whereas the CAT interface is being used to exchange Radio information and settings between an Application and a radio, the so-called DAX interface, provided by this App, can be used to exchange receive and transmit audio between your external software.

How you have to use this DAX feature depends on the Software you want to use. In general, such software is using the built-in audio interface of your Mac like this App does as well. As long as the software allows to select different audio input and output sources or offers its own Audio interfaces, it is possible to connect the Software with this App.

The DAX feature of this App can be used to connect to additional audio interfaces but for the connection between your external software and this App 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: but the ideal driver in combination with SmartSDR for macOS is the Loopback driver

PLEASE NOTE: I have arranged with Rogue Amoeba that users of SmartSDR for macOS will get a 25% discount. Please contact me using the “Contact Developer” button under SmartSDR → 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 SmartSDR side and on the external App side.

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

And this would be the virtual driver for Audio from SmartSDR 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 SmartSDR in the Radio → DAX Streaming settings as follows:

For the DAX RX Settings, you will also need to select a DAX channel.

The same channel needs to be selected for the Slice you want to use for DAX receiving.


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 VOX option of the CAT driver. This VOX option is independent from the VOX for SSB mode and solely activates the PTT in case of an audio signal on the DAX TX audio device.


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.

6.1.CW Keyer

Under Tools → CW Keyer you can change various settings for local CW Keying.

PLEASE NOTE: If your CW Key is directly connected to your Radio. This CW Keyer will not be used. The Settings for such a directly connected Key can be found under Radio → Flex 6xxx Settings → CW. If you are using a Key directly connected to your Radio, you will only get the Side-tone out of the Radio. This is a Radio restriction and no restriction of the App.

The App integrated CW Keyer generates it’s own local Side-tone because the Radio can’t send a Side-tone back to the App. For the best experience, the local Side-tone needs to be as close as possible to the physical keying of the Radio. For this, you can adjust the delay of the Side-tone here in this setting screen.

The Side-tone can be enabled in the Radio Control panel.

The Keyer Type selection offers four different key types:

  • Straight Key
  • Iambic Mode A
  • Iambic Mode B
  • Iambic Mode B Strict

The Straight Key is a regular single switch Key or Bug. The others are two key paddles offered in different modes.

For keying you have three different options:

  • Use the Keyboard (or a separate, additional, even PC Keyboard). The keys that should trigger Cw can be configured under SmartSDR → Preferences → Keyboard keys
  • Use MIDI commands from a MIDI Controller
  • Use a Key or Paddle connected via USB Serial cable

Each of these options can be individually enabled or disabled to prevent accidental CW keying.

In addition, you can connect a foot switch (or any other switch) using the same cable as being used for the CW for PTT activation in phone mode.

The USB Serial Cable type and wiring is described further below in the Attachment of this manual.

Once that cable is connected, the Cable’s serial number should appear in the Cable selection and needs to be selected, before Enabling using this cable.


6.2.Keyboard Key Assignment

It is possible to assign Keyboard keys to Radio and App functions in the same way as it is possible to assign functions for MIDI controllers or the FlexControl.

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

The keyboard assignment feature can be opened from the Tools Menu (Tools → Keyboard). Or for backward compatibility reasons also from SmartSDR → Preferences → Keyboard Keys tab.

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 klick 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.

Some functions require additional information such as the Slice to which the function should be applied. If you don’t want to apply a function to a specific slice, you can select either “active” for the currently active slice or “tx” for the current TX slice.


6.3.Midi Controller

Under Tools → Controller → 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 Radio 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.


The FlexRadio FlexControl™ tuning and control knob is supported by this App.

To configure FlexControl, just plug it into one of the USB sockets of your Mac. Next open the Tools → Controller → FlexControl menu (please connect your FlexControl before using this menu).

Under Device: select the correct entry for the FlexControl. It will show up with names similar as shown above.

Use the Edit Mapping button to assign functions to the wheel and the three knobs.

The first time, the Mapping editor is empty.

To assign a function to a Button or Wheel, just click the button for which you want to assign a function or spin the Wheel.

The Button or Wheel will now show up in the Mapping Editor.

Next select the entry (if not already selected) and click on Edit at the top.

From here, you can use the Assign button for possible function assignments. Depending on the assignment, you can also select a Slice or other additional parameters.

You can repeat these steps for all Controls of the FlexControl individually.

Please note: You can assign three different functions for each button:

  1. For s single, regular click
  2. For a long press of the button
  3. For a double click of the button

This is also possible for the wheel, which can also be pressed.

The three LEDs of the FlexControl can also be assigned (e.g. to light when MOX is on). For this, just use the + Icon at the top of the Mapping Editor and select LED.

Do remove (unassign) a Mapping, just select the Control you wish to delete and click the top trashcan Icon.

6.5.RC 28 Controller

Under Tools → RC-28 Controller, you can configure your Icom RC-28 Controller, if available.

Once your RC-28 Controller is connected to your Mac via USB, you will be able to select your Controller as “Icom RC-28 REMOTE ENCODER” in the Device selection.

After selecting this device and checking the Enabled checkbox the Status should change to Connected. Should that not be the case, un-check “Enabled”, reconnect the cable and try again.

Once the device is connected, you can maintain button and wheel assignments by hitting the “Edit Mapping” button.

From inside this Mapping Editor, you can push the buttons or spin the control wheel and will see the corresponding entry appearing or highlighting in the list.

Next, click on “Edit” to assign a function to the selected control.

6.6.Network Stats

This Tool can help to analyze network issues.

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

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 and in case you are using SmartLink.

Radio RTT is the Round-Trip-Time to your Radio. 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 etc.)

The Radio Latency is the time your Radio answers to Commands. This value should be similar to the Radio RTT. If this value is significantly higher (e.g. 1.5 or twice as high as your Radio RTT) your Radio is responding very slow and you may want to try to Power Cycle your Radio.

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

If the number of Packets remains zero even after you are connected (and even when there are reasonable RTT and Latency values), there will be issues with the Radio UDP communication.

A certain Error percentage (1-5%) 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 problem.

The Reset 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.

6.7.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 SmartSDR → Preferences in order to see the correct Band Plan for your region.

Inside the Band Plan tool, you can click on a box for details about this section of the band.

The Setting menu at the top allows you to select, whether or not, the Band limits and modes should be visible within the Panadapter as seen below:


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).


6.8.Call lookup

The Call lookup Tool can be used to learn more about a certain callsign.

After entering the Callsign 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.

For more detailed information like the name, exact location or even Email address, you can use one of the integrated call lookup services like HamQTH or If you have an account on one or both of these services, please enter your account information under SmartSDR → Preference → Ham. In that case, you can use the HamQTH or 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 button which will show the website for the particular callsign.

6.9.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 panadapter and currently selected slice will be tuned to the 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.


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.

6.10.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.



It is possible to Record Audio (RX and TX) while you are connected to your Radio.

To start recording, just hit the Rec button at the top of the main window.

Please note: The Recording feature requires “Use Radio output (instead of Mac)” to be turned off in the Audio Settings (gear Icon).

Once you did, this button turns into a red Stop button, indicating that Recording is currently in progress. Once you press this button again to stop recording, the audio-recording can be accessed from the Recording Tool.

From here, you can Play back the recording, delete or export the file as MP3 file for external usage. For this, just select the recording in the list and hit the corresponding button at the top.

You can alter the title by clicking into the title column.

To transmit your recording, just hit the Transmit button.

Under Settings, you can adjust the recording and speaker playback gain.

6.12.Voice Macros (Voice keyer)

Just like CW Macros, it is also possible to record and play-back Audio Macros for phone QSOs. UPDATE V1.6

On macOS 11 (Big Sur) and newer, it is also possible to enter text which will be converted to speech automatically.

Maintaining and submitting Voice Macros is very similar to CW Macros. You can maintain all Macros in the Voice Macros Tool.

From here, you can select one of the 12 lines for a Macro, enter a name for easier reference in the Macro Window and assign a Key which should trigger the Macro.

To record a new Voice Macro, just hit the Record/Edit button at the top after selecting the corresponding line of the Macro list.

From here, you can click on the Record button, start speaking and click on Stop when you are finished.

Voice will be recorded from the microphone which is currently selected in the Audio menu of the App (gear Icon). You can watch the Level meter while speaking and adjust the Recording gain slider for optimal gain of the recording.

Once done, you can click on Play to check your recording or send to let the recording be transmitted.

To maintain Text macros, just select “Text to speech” instead of “Voice recording” as Macro type at the top.

Instead of the Level Meter and the Record button, you will see a Text field where you can enter the text of your Voice Macro.

Since the Text-to-speech engine was not designed to have a QSO with somebody, you sometimes have to experiment when entering text especially when using HAM abbreviations and Q-Codes. Whereas CQ is spelled correctly, other abbreviations need to be separated by comma or dash. Using a period will cause a pause while speaking.

You can also use placeholders which will be replaced before they are spoken. As of now, the following placeholders are supported:

{HisCall} Speaks current logged call letter by letter
{HisCallSpell} Spells current logged call letter by letter
{RSTSent} Speaks the RST entered in RST Sent
{RSTReceived} Speaks the RST entered in RST Received

These values will be taken from the currently open logging window. So if you want to use these placeholders, you will need to have the “Log QSO” window open and must have entered the Call and RST values you like to be sent. Once that’s done, you can hit the Macro key to get everything transmitted.

The play and send buttons inside this screen are working the same way as for recorded audio.

At the bottom of this screen, you can adjust the speech speed and the type of voice. The languages and different speakers (male and female) available here depend on the voices you have installed on your Mac. To install more voices, choose the Apple menu → System Preferences, click Accessibility, then click Spoken Content. Click the System Voice pop-up menu, then choose Customize. Select the checkbox beside the voices you want to add. To find a voice, enter its name, country or region, or language in the search field.

Sending Voice Macros

Even though you can select and send Voice Macros from the Voice Macros Tool, you can also use the dedicated Macros Panel from the ViewMacros Menu (or by hitting Option-Command-M).

This Panel displays small buttons for each Macro, displaying the title and Keyboard shortcut for the Macro.

Please note: This Macro Panel will automatically show all CW Macros instead, when operating in CW.


New in 1.9.3 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.


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.

If you are running SmartSDR for Mac or SmartSDR for iOS on different devices, the logbook can be automatically synchronized between all devices.

In addition, 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 lookup feature.

There are several settings for customizing the logbook.

By hitting the “Use iCloud” button, the App uses a logbook which is synchronized with other devices via iCloud. This is the default setting.

To use a separate local file, just hit the “Local File…” button and create another file. You can switch between local files and iCloud logging at any time. To transfer a log from one to another, just use the ADIF export and import feature.

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 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.


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 the Logging Tool, click on (+) Add
  • From the left Panadapter Menu, click on “Log”
  • At any Panadapter, 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 TX Slice:

You just need to enter the Callsign 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,, ClubLog and QSO confirmations can be received from LOTW and

Please note: Before you submit any QSO to any of these services, please double-check if you have entered all necessary information under SmartSDR → 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.


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 you need to get your API Key from your website. To retrieve this key, login to the 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 Please note: In order to use this feature, you will need a subscription. For details, please see the 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.

You will also be prompted for a passphrase. Even though it is possible to leave the fields blank, it is necessary and recommended to use a passphrase. Use a passphrase different to your LOTW password.

Please note: If you already have a .P12 file previously created, you can not use this file on a Mac if you have not entered a passphrase. You need to re-create this file with a passphrase in this case.

All these steps can be performed on a Windows Computer or Mac. Back in SmartSDR LOTW QSL Preferences, just hit the “Load .P12 file” button and browse to the same location where you did store the file.  Next you will be prompted to enter “the password for this file”. Here you need to enter the aforementioned passphrase.

Please note: The App stores all information 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 or the aforementioned passphrase.

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 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 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 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 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.



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 at the Dayton FlexRadio Banquet 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.

Thanks  to all testers who provided valuable feedback and who helped to make this feature possible. But a special thanks to Joe Taylor who brought us this wonderful mode.

Requirements / Features

FlexRadio firmware Version 2.5 is a minimum requirement to run this FT8 tool.

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 Panadapter 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 : which is also available in other languages.

Using the FT8 tool

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

At the top of the Tool screen, you can select the DAX Channel which should be used for FT8 and you can show a Map which shows the locations of the received stations.

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)
  • 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 Radio 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 SmartSDR → Preferences.

Once you hit RX, the Radio will not just tune to the right frequency. Also, all necessary parameters such as Mode, DAX, DAX Channel, Bandwidth etc.) will be set automatically.

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


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.


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.


The Panadapter button will bring the corresponding panadapter window to the front.

On the panadapter, you can watch the band activity and can easily select a free Frequency if you like to call CQ or answer somebody on a different frequency (Split). For this, just right click on the waterfall at the desired location (frequency) and select Set FT8 TX Frequency or RX Frequency.


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.


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.


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.


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


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


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.


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.

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.



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





6.17.HF Fax

New in 1.9.8

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.


6.18.Genius Devices

Power Genius (PGXL), Tuner Genius (TGXL),  Antenna Genius (AGXL) and Rotator Genius (RGXL) are supported by this App. The integration is very similar to the Windows Tools provided by FlexRadio so for further reference, please have a look to the manual of the original Tools. For certain settings and firmware updates you will still need those tools.


This App requires the following Firmware versions for correct operation: PGXL: 3.6.x or 3.7.x, TGXL: 1.1.8, AGXL: 3.1.5 and RGXL: 1.5.0

If device discovering is enabled, PGXL and TGXL will automatically be discovered and displayed. AGXL and RGXL need to be added manually using the Add button. This is useful if you only work from home. For remote access or if you want to use the “Auto open” feature (see further below) you will have to manually add each Genius Device.

By double-clicking on a device in the list or selecting a device and clicking the Connect button, the App will connect to the device and open the device control screen.

If you check the “Auto open” checkbox for a device, the App will connect to the particular device on App start. This will only be possible for devices that have been added manually.

The PGXL control screen

From here, you can monitor the operation of the PGXL and change the PGXL settings.

In order to use the PGXL along with your FlexRadio you need to pair one or both ports with your Radio. For this, you need to be connected to your PGXL and your Radio locally and click the “Pair with Radio” button.

If you are using PGXL firmware 3.7. an remote access code is required when connecting the PGXL from outside your home network. This code can be entered here as well on the device information screen for connecting to the PGXL.

The TGXL Control screen

The TGXL control view has a similar layout like the PGXL control view and offers buttons for Tuning or setting the Tuner on Bypass.

AGXL Control Screen

From here, you can assign port A or port B to one of the eight Antenna sockets of the AGXL. The AGXL settings screen can be used to rename antennas or pair a port with your Radio.

RGXL Control Screen

From here you can enter a certain rotor direction or rotate the rotor counter-clockwise or clockwise. On the left you can add presets for quick rotation to certain directions. Different to the Windows App, you can also enter predefined directions of a single, both together or both rotors individually if you have more than one rotor.

Hitting Settings will open the settings for the currently selected rotor where you can rename it and change limits and offset.

Different to the Windows App, you can also change the Rotor mode to Elevation.

Remote access

The genius devices can also be accessed remotely. For this, you need to add those devices you like to use remotely manually using the Add button.

Here, you can enter the remote access Address that should be used to access your network where yourGenius devices are located. For a TGXL you also have to enter a Remote access code which is identical to the Remote access code you can maintain in the local TGXL settings. The PGXL however, doesn’t provide this extra security measure.

Check or uncheck the “Is 3-Antenna Device” depending on whether or not you are using a SO2R version.

6.19.Frequency List

Besides the ability to maintain Radio memories, the App also provides a possibility to maintain a frequency list.

Difference between Memories and the Frequency list

Memories are limited by the constraints of the Radio. Also, they are stored inside the Radio which is an advantage on one hand as they are available whenever you are using the Radio. On the other hand, they don’t allow maintaining and using a global list of frequencies for different Radios.

The Frequency list tool is a tool to maintain a global list of frequencies for using on multiple Radios. Frequencies are not stored inside the Radio but synchronized via iCloud. However, frequencies here are limited to store a the frequency itself, the mode such as AM, FM etc. a name, comment and tags. Additional parameters like DTCS or TSQL frequency can not be stored here as they are Radio specific.

Starting the Frequency list tool will show a window similar to this:

This list can be sorted by clicking on the column header. You can enter a search term at the top to search for a certain term or filter the list as described further below.

When being connected with a Radio, double-clicking on a line in the list will tune to the corresponding frequency and change the mode. You can also hold the command key while using the arrow keys to change the selection of the list to tune to a frequency.

Two different lists – Built in and your own

The tool comes with several commonly used frequencies already included. This is the Built in list which will be displayed when the “Built in List” checkbox at the top is checked.

This list will be updated via Data update from time to time.

Note: If you have frequencies that you think might be interesting for others and you like to share, please feel free to send them to me via E-Mail, regardless of their format. I am happy to add them to this list.

The built in list can not be edited but it can be filtered or used as described further below.

If you un-check the “Built In List” checkbox, you will view a list that can be fully maintained by yourself.

Use the Add (+) button at the top to add individual frequencies.

Here you can enter a name, the frequency, select a mode add a comment and tags.

If you are connected to a Radio, Frequency and mode will be pre-filled your current frequency and mode.

Tags are useful for filtering your list. You can enter any number of tags separated by comma (,).

To filter your list, just hit the filter button similar to the other tools of this app.


From here you can quickly enable or disable your filters. Selecting a Mode or Frequency range will cause only those frequencies to be listed which are using the given mode and are in the given frequency range.

You can enter one or more tags, separated by comma (,). In this case, you will see all entries that are matching any of the given tags.

Mass change

Using the Utilities […] menu and selecting Mass Change or by right clicking, you can make changes which will be applied to multiple entries. This way you can change or add comments or tags or change the mode of several entries at once.

If you have multiple lines selected, the changes will only be applied to the selected lines. If no line or just a single line is selected, the changes will be applied to the complete list.

If you enter a tag, all tags of the selected lines will be replaced by this tag. If you would add a plus (+) sign in front of the tag, that tag will be added to all lines. If you would add a minus (-) the tag will be remove if it exists. If you want all tags to be cleared, just enter two minus signs (–) as tag.

Comments can be maintained in the same way.

Finding duplicates

If you have imported memories from different sources you may end up in multiple equal entries. You can use the Find duplicates tool under the Utilities […] menu to find and merge duplicates.

Import / Export

Once you have maintained a list of a certain size, I suggest to export that list to keep a backup. For this, just use the Export menu under the Utilities […] menu to write the list to a file.

You can pick the location where the file should be stored and the file name on the file selection screen. The file will contain all information, including comments and tags.

The exported file can be imported back again using the Import menu of the Utilities […] menu. When importing a file, the data will be added to the list so you may want to clear (empty) the whole list if you want it to be overwritten. For this, just press control-a (to select all entries of the list) and hit the Delete Icon at the top.

Import formats

The tool can handle multiple different formats. The ideal format however is the format which is used when exporting the frequency list. This is a plain text file, semicolon-separated and with a header.

When importing a file, it must at least contain a header with certain column names. Fields can be separated by comma (,), semicolon (;) or tab which will be auto-detected. The following column headers are expected:


Header Value
freq or frequency The frequency in Hz
mode The mode
name The Name
comment The Comment
tags The Tags


Values of missing columns will receive default values. Extra columns will be ignored.

The majority of commonly available frequency lists can be imported this way. This also includes standard Icom Memory (.mem) files.

Files that are not using the necessary header names as listed above must be edited in a standard text editor before they can be imported.

Files in other formats such as XML or JSon files need to be converted to csv files before they can be imported. There are several online tools on the web that can handle this conversion.

Usually frequency lists are containing the frequency in Hz. If your import file is using kHz or MHz, you also need to edit the file before it can be imported.



7.1.USB Serial Cable

You can use a USB Serial cable to connect a CW Key or Paddles to the Mac. The same cable can also be used to connect a foot switch for PTT activation.

The supported cable is the same cable supported by FlexRadio as USB CAT cable for the Radio and is called

FTDI USB to Serial Cable DB9M (UT232R-200)

Since Version 2 of the App, no extra driver needs to be installed anymore. This also means that it might be possible to use other USB Serial cables but this has not been tested. So if in doubt and if you have to purchase a USB cable anyways, better look for a FTDI cable as mentioned above.

Once your cable is connected to your Mac, you will be able to select this Cable from the Tools → CW Keyer menu.


The FTDI USB Serial cable uses a DB9 male plug.

Connecting a Paddle:

The common cable of the paddle needs to be connected to pin 7 which is the RTS pin.

The left (dit) paddle needs to be connected to pin 8 which is the CTS pin.

The right (dah) paddle needs to be connected to pin 1 which is DCD

For de-bouncing, please add a capacitor of 10 – 100nF between pin 5 (GND) and pin 1 and another between pin 5 and pin 8. Some users were experiencing additional dits and dahs when using a 100nF capacitor so in that case you can try lower capacities down to 10nF.

Connecting a Straight key or foot switch:

A Straight key or foot switch needs to be connected to pin 7 (RTS) and either pin 8 (CTS) or pin 1 (DCD). Both ways will work.

For de-bouncing please add a capacitor of 100nF between pin 5 (GND) and pin 8 or pin 1 (whichever you use for the foot-switch).


7.2.Macro variables

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



8.Common issues

Connection Timeout Error

If you get this message while trying to connect to your Radio, maybe you have enabled “Auto connect” and your Radio has changed it’s IP Address. In that case, just hold the Option key while clicking on Connect and you will see the “Available Radios” screen again. Here you can uncheck and check again the “Auto connect” checkbox for your Radio.

Connection freezes after exactly five minutes

A few Netgear Routers have a bug known as “False UDP Flood Detection”. This Router Bug causes the communication with this App freeze exactly after 5 minutes. This can also happen if such a Router is installed at either end of a SmartLink connection. Unfortunately, this known bug is not yet fixed by Netgear by the time of writing but if you are affected, you may want to check for a router update. If that doesn’t help then unfortunately the only solution is to replace your Netgear Router – which is, by the way, no bad idea as Netgear Routers are well known for their bugs and security issues.

Nothing happens when clicking on Connect

This could happen if you have enabled the “auto connect” checkbox for a certain Radio but that Radio is no longer available under the same IP Address. If the “Auto connect” checkbox is enabled, the “Available Radio” list will be skipped (which is the purpose of the Autoconnect function). To get the “Available Radio” list back, just hold the option key while clicking on Connect or use the Menu SmartSDR → Preferences and hit the “Available Radios…” button.

Mouse or Trackpad behaving wrong

If your Mouse or Trackpad is not working as expected, have a look to the Mouse and Track-pad setting of the App under SmartSDR → Preferences and the Mouse / Trackpad tab. Try to disable the Trackpad if you are only using a Mouse or vice-verse. You can also try the Legacy Mouse setting in case you are using a Mouse, not supported by macOS.

If you are using a Logitech Mouse along with the Logitech Software, better disable or uninstall this software as it contains a few bugs. The Mouse will even work without this software – or try the Legacy Mouse setting.

If you are using an Apple MagicMouse, this Mouse can be used as Trackpad.

Error message “Audio device error”

This message may appear either for the “input device” (microphone) or “output device” (speaker).

If you see this message, just open the top Audio menu (gear icon) and check your selections for the output and/or input device and select a correctly available and working device.

If you Mac doesn’t have a built-in microphone like the MacMini, you can select “listen only” to prevent this error message from popping up.

Background: The App allows to use Speakers and Microphones different to the devices selected as default devices in your Mac System preferences. This allows you for instance to use your internal Speaker for system sounds but another Speaker for the App. For this reason, you can (and have to) select which output and input devices the App should use and if they change (e.g. by disconnecting a microphone), the App informs you about this by displaying this error message.

RTTY or FT8 not receiving

If you hit the RX button and the scope in RTTY doesn’t show any signal or FT8 doesn’t receive any messages, maybe you are using the same DAX channel for something else. Try to select a different DAX channel at the top of the RTTY or FT8 Tool and hit RX again.

In FT8, also ensure that you have selected the right frequency in the Box right of the RX button.

No TX signal when transmitting

In case you can’t get a signal out of your Radio, please check the following:

  • If you can’t get TX audio out of your Radio in SSB, try to change the Microphone input source from Mac to something else and then back to Mac (the button above PROC in the Radio Control pannel)
  • If you are using the included FT8 or RTTY Tool, double check if DAX is enabled. This should be automatically the case when hitting the RX button inside the FT8 / RTTY Tool but you might have turned off DAX manually.
  • For FT8, if you can’t transmit, check the Low-Cut and High-Cut values in the Control Panel. For FT8 you need at least a Low-Cut of 300 and a High-Cut of 3000.
  • Also, when using the internal Tools, check if DAX Streaming is turned off. This is only needed when using external software. The DAX Streaming settings can be found under Radio → DAX Streaming.
  • Try to switch to any other TX Profile (the button above the TUNE and MOX buttons in the Radio Control pannel)
  • Ensure that you have the latest App version (check on the Mac App Store) and the latest Radio Firmware (check under Radio → Flex-6xxx Settings → Radio Tab and Check for Firmware update. Keep in mind that you can only update to the latest licensed version)
  • Power cycle your Radio
  • If you still can’t get a signal out of your Radio, please see if your Mac Firewall is switched on and try to turn it temporary off. You can do this by starting the “System Preferences” (gear Icon) on your Mac. Go to Security & Privacy and select the Firewall tab. If the firewall is on, try to turn it off. After this change, better restart your Mac and try again. In general, the App works even with your Firewall enabled but if the solution to your problem is, to turn it off, better investigate in your Firewall settings which may be changed so that you can turn your firewall back on.
  • Reset your App Client ID using SmartSDR → Preferences → Extended tab and the “Reset Radio Client ID” button.
  • Reset your App settings using SmartSDR → Preferences → Extended tab and the “Restore default settings” button. Please quit and restart the App after this.

Clicking noise while receiving

If you are on WiFi or have a slow network connection then you may hear clicking noise. This can be fixed by increasing the buffer settings in the top audio menu (gear icon at the top).

If that doesn’t cure your problem, try (at least temporary) a LAN connection for your Mac to see if that makes a difference. If that’s the case, you may want to look for improvements of your WiFi network.

Chances are, that you can improve the WiFi experience by limiting your WiFi to 5 GHz instead of 2.4 GHz because 2.4GHz shares it’s frequency with bluetooth.

Another possibility would be to disable Location Services on your Mac. For this, open the Mac System Preferences and select “Security & Privacy”. In the left list select “Location Services”. You may now click on the lock at the bottom of this screen and enter your Mac login credentials. Next disable the “Enable Location Services” checkbox.

Not possible to create Slices or Panadapters at all

If you can’t create any Slice or any Panadapter, you may upgrade your Radio License. You can only run a Firmware version for which your Radio has been licensed. For example, if your Radio is only licensed for Firmware Version 2, you can not run Firmware Version 3. If you would install Firmware Version 3 in that case, you won’t be able to create Slices. Re-installing Firmware Version 2 (or Version 1) will allow you to create Slices again.

You can find out the License of your Radio by looking at the Radio Info screen which can be opened from the “Available Radios” screen and clicking on the Info button. The line “Max Licensed Version” will tell you about the license level.

If you wish to upgrade to a higher Version, please contact FlexRadio directly for assistance.

Keyboard Tuning or Keyboard PTT assignment is missing

Since version 1.4.30 the keyboard assignment functions have been further extended and are now available from the Tools Menu → Controller  → Keyboard or for backward compatibility reasons also from the SmartSDR → Preferences → Keyboard Keys tab.

The procedure on how to assign keys (like Arrow keys for frequency tuning etc.) is explained in Chapter “Keyboard Key Assignment”.

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.

The Foot-Switch (or CW) doesn’t work properly

If you experience issues with the Foot-Switch or CW where it doesn’t key correctly or doesn’t turn on or off TX all the time, please consider adding a 100nF capacitor between each switch and Ground (pin 5 of the DB9 connector).

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