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Author Topic: CwGet documentation/instructions  (Read 763 times)
WB6DNL
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Posts: 40




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« on: July 04, 2017, 09:37:50 AM »

I'm trying CwGet, but find the documentation less than ideal. Even after reading it, I admit to being clueless as to what the various software setting fields and buttons are for.   Can someone tell me what settings might work best?

Dave (WB6DNL)
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PA0WV
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Posts: 387




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« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2017, 07:10:52 AM »

I really don't understand what the benefit will be for you to use CWget.
Do not try it, the way to hell is paved with beautiful stones.

There are two possibilities that are included in my advice here:

1. Learn to copy with pen and a piece of paper CW with a website like JustLearnMorseCode or the website of G4FON
2. Just go and get some PSK31 decoding and coding program.

73=30
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WB6DNL
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Posts: 40




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« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2017, 08:15:36 AM »

PA0WV- Will PSK31 software decode CW?  Here's my situation:  I copy 13-15 wpm, and obviously can send faster.  Lots of folks (most?) are sending faster than that. I'd respond to their CQ if I knew I'd have a little help keeping up. (I took a 50+ year absence from ham radio, so was first licensed when CW was required.)

Dave
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K8AXW
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Posts: 6224




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« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2017, 08:38:15 AM »

Dave:  I know exactly what you are experiencing.  I have the same problem with those running pile-ups at 30+ wpm.  I've been at this CW thing for over 60 years and found the speed limit that I can live with. 

The only answer for increased performance for both of us is more practice.  In my case, I'm comfortable at 25-30 wpm and have no desire to increase my speed.  In your case, you're not satisfied so you just need to put in more practice time.

Going to a computer program or a machine to achieve your goal will in fact cause you to lose ground/speed!  I hope you don't do this because I know you have put in too much time and effort to get where you are.

One lesson most fail to understand is that some things require hard work and time. 
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K0UA
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Posts: 1145




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« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2017, 09:31:22 AM »

PA0WV- Will PSK31 software decode CW?  Here's my situation:  I copy 13-15 wpm, and obviously can send faster.  Lots of folks (most?) are sending faster than that. I'd respond to their CQ if I knew I'd have a little help keeping up. (I took a 50+ year absence from ham radio, so was first licensed when CW was required.)

Dave

The practical answer to your question is no. Sure there are may CW decoders, and I have several, but during pile up or even crowded band conditions, I have never seen one do so very well.  The cw skimmer does a pretty good job.  In "clear air" and with really good sent CW, yeah they will copy right along, but when the going gets tough, they fall down.  They can be a bit of an "aid" when a guy who is sending good cw is going just a bit too fast, for you, they can kinda make up the difference, as you try to copy along in your head.  So I am not saying not to try one or more, but don't expect miracles with them.  On psk31 or Olivia, yeah expect miracles.  But on CW?  no, not so much. A good human ear and brain have them beat in most cases.

If you load one of the many software programs and discover the joy of working digital modes,  You just might cool down on the cw a bit.  Smiley  Its up to you.  I work far more digital modes than I do CW, yes by a factor of 10 maybe.
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VA7CPC
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Posts: 2798




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« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2017, 04:49:40 PM »

I'm trying CwGet, but find the documentation less than ideal. Even after reading it, I admit to being clueless as to what the various software setting fields and buttons are for.   Can someone tell me what settings might work best?

Dave (WB6DNL)

FWIW (and bypassing the CW morality police) --

In my experience, the critical things are:

. . . the settings of the "signal / no signal" limits ("threshold");

. . . the width of the filter(s);

. . . the limits for "RX speed" (width of the "RX speed" window.

Assuming you have CWGet running, and have a strong, steady, machine-sent (or paddle-sent) CW signal tuned into your passband:

. . . Set "auto threshold" _off_   (you will set the "threshold");

. . . Set "Sp Lock" _off_ (CWGet will figure out the sending speed);

. . . Set the main filter to 280 Hz (that's too wide for contests and weak signals, but you have
. . . . . to start somewhere);

. . . Set the "burst filter" (which i don't fully understand) to 300 LPM;

Now, click on the frequency of the signal.

The bottom trace will show the output of the filter.   Click on that trace to set the threshold halfway between "signal" (when there's a tone) and "no signal" (the  silence between CW elements).

Estimate the speed of the CW you're receiving.  Set the the decoding-speed limits (to the left of the Sp Lock button) to a lower limit slower than that (the "LPM" is 5 times the words-per-minute), and an upper limit higher than that.  So if the sending is at 15 wpm, use a lower limit of 50, and an upper limit of 100.

Assuming that you've pointed CWGet to the proper input (whichever soundcard your digital interface is on, or the computer's microphone), you should be decoding the signal.

You can practice this, and see some of the effects, by using a paddle and your keyer to generate CW sounds, and using the computer's speaker to receive them.  This is an _excellent_ way to improve your sending!  If CWGet can read you, you're doing OK.

Using narrower filters is necessary in high-noise conditions, or with poor S/N ratio for the signal.  You may want to turn off the AGC to avoid "pumping" by adjacent-channel signals.   I've found that I can adjust the threshold better than CWGet; you may have better luck with the "auto threshold" capability.


.     Charles


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WB6DNL
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Posts: 40




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« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2017, 07:13:17 PM »

Charles - Thanks very much.  I'll give these settings a try.

Dave
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