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Author Topic: PSK31 - I'm easily heard, but can't make contacts!  (Read 5002 times)
KG6SII
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Posts: 27




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« on: February 27, 2012, 09:34:09 PM »

Digital experts,

I have Digipan and my rig/audio set-up very well and have read the entire help documentation, plus G3LDI's "RTTY/PSK31 For Radio Amateurs" booklet, yet I am having a problem establishing contacts in PSK31.

I can easily be heard.  I get responses to my CQ's all the time.  But the responses don't appear in the active receive window. Instead, I am called on another line of the multi-line display.  So I click on that line of the multi-line display and send a reply, but the other party either can't hear me, or I see that they are calling me AGAIN on yet ANOTHER multi-line.

Does anyone know what may be happening here?  I'm running a Yaesu FT-747GX with a Donner interface.

Thanks in advance!
Glenn
KG6SII
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STAYVERTICAL
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Posts: 864




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« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2012, 09:50:42 PM »

Hi,

Sorry to hear about your problem, but great that you have read up on psk31 to try to solve your problem.
The problem is that your transmit and receive frequency is different.
This could be because you have the VFO set to split mode (unlikely), or your soundcard may be mismatched for some reason.
I have to confess to not using digipan, but the symptons are certainly those of operating on slightly different transmit and receive frequencies.

If you dont click on the the responders line on the multiline display you can have a contact by typing in the main window and watching his text in the multiline display, but that is only a short term solution which will at least get you having a qso.
When you click on the multiline display digipan will change your transmit audio frequency to match that which corresponds to that line.
Your transmit frequency will change which is why your contact loses you, since you have now gone from his display frequency.
So, you both do this "dance" around frequencies where you each "correct" and move away from each other.

In PSK31 the transmit frequency is determined by the audio being pumped into the SSB transmitter, so if digipan has some setting such as "offset" this may be set to something other than zero, causing this problem.


Another more obvious possibility is that you have the RIT (bfo receiver tuning) set to something other than zero.
This will definitely cause this problem and is something very simple to correct.
When using psk31, your RF transmit and receive should be set to the same frequency, and RIT and anything else which allows TX and RX frequencies to be different should be set to zero.

I suspect it is something as simple as this, and am sure you will be PSK'ing very soon.

Good luck, and 73s.

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KB6HOH
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Posts: 189




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« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2012, 10:33:09 PM »

Glen,

        Steve Here, KB6HOH in Novato. SF North Bay.
I pulled you up on Skype. Lets talk and see if we can get you going.

                       73 de Steve KB6HOH
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K0YQ
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Posts: 447




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« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2012, 12:41:27 AM »

Hi Glenn,

Assuming your rig is set up okay - no RIT, split, etc.

Is your TX frequency locked in Digipan?  Make sure on the Lock menu you're set to Unlock TX frequency.  The little flag above your waterfall display should be green and directly over your red RX diamond and aligned with the station you're working.  If your flag is red your TX frequency is locked and not aligned with the station you're trying to work.  The green flag and the red diamond should be moving together, indicating your RX and TX frequency are aligned.  Is that happening?

You might also want to try closing the Multichannel display (View menu) and just manually decode and work one station at a time.  Again your TX flag indicator should be green and aligned with the diamond on the station you're receiving in the waterfall.
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AG6WT
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Posts: 448




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« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2012, 09:57:35 AM »

Glenn,

How far apart are your Tx and Rx frequencies? If it's only a few 10's of Hz and you are sure you aren't running in split mode, you may need to adjust your sound card Tx and Rx sampling rates. Take a look at the Digipan menu for instructions on how to make the adjustment.

You might look here:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/digitalradio/message/16621

Ray KJ6AMF
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KG6SII
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Posts: 27




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« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2012, 10:57:37 PM »

Thank you all for your replies, and a big thanks to KB6HOH (Steve) for elmer'ing me via Skype tonight.

Unfortunately, my Rx & TX are still off in Digipan.  I send CQ and get a prompt reply, but my contact's line on the waterfall is just about 50Hz to the right of my red diamond and green flag.  I have done the following with no luck:
- Verified frequency is "unlocked" in Digipan
- Changed sound card sampling rate to 12000 in Digipan
- Calibrated my sound card's sampling rate using CheckSR and entered Sample Rate Corrections in Digipan of -2Rx /-1Tx ppm.
- I've checked my Clarifier (a.k.a RIT) on my transceiver and it lists no offset

I was able to have a brief contact in the single window, with a few semi-successful backs N' forths.  Heavy noise though. At the start of the QSO, when he first called me, I noticed the red diamond automatically moved very slightly (maybe 10Hz) automatically.

Could the issue be as simple as my VFO frequency being off from 10.140?  My transceiver's tuning knob is indented.  I turn it until the display reads 10.140.0, but I can keep turning it 4 more "clicks" on the knob before the display goes to 10.140.1, so each "click" is about 25Hz.  Right before my QSO I just described, I tuned my transceiver to the very top of 10.140.0, which is different from my normal practice of going two clicks into the middle of 10.140.0.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2012, 11:12:56 PM by KG6SII » Logged
KB6HOH
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Posts: 189




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« Reply #6 on: February 29, 2012, 12:42:08 AM »

Glen

         Steve here KB6HOH. Do this for me make sure the AFC on DigiPan is turned off.
Also this maybe a little rough, if you are trying to respond to another Station but for the time being up on the Tool Bar there is "LOCK". This will Lock your TX on the Waterfall allowing you to move the RX marker around.
You can set one of the Macros to also be an On/Off for the Lock feature.Try that for the time being until we figure out whats going out.  Also you should not be using the VFO to tune in a Station.
When you 1st started TXing just with the PSK31 idle tones I lined up with you. When I TXed back to you was my Signal lined up with the Marker or was it off Freq. Lets see what we can do later today on 40m. Give me a shout or drop me an Email on what the best time to hookup. Also when you get a chance download the FLdigi Software. It will give something a bit better to work with. Look for you later today.

                             73 de Steve KB6HOH
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K0YQ
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Posts: 447




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« Reply #7 on: February 29, 2012, 12:45:34 AM »

Sounds to me like it's a matter of the stability of the VFO of your rig.  The VFOs in some rigs, especially older ones, will drift around and as such really aren't well suited to digi modes.  Case in point my old TR-7.  I think that you're doing everything right but the rig's VFO is drifting around and is the problem.  That would be my guess...
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KB6HOH
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Posts: 189




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« Reply #8 on: February 29, 2012, 02:41:45 PM »

Glen,

        Fldigi has a Calibration routine that uses WWV and has a visual screen that we might be able to use.
What I am thinking is we can attempt to see if the receive is drifting on the Radio by watching it listen to
WWV and the Tone Tick Marks that it generates. These are shown on the Screen with a Calibration fixed marker.

                                  73 de Steve KB6HOH
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KG6SII
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Posts: 27




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« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2012, 11:58:24 PM »

I'd just like to thank everyone from their replies, and again thank Steve KB6HOH very much for his elmering over Skype.  My old Yaesu FT-747GX is now working Digital just fine!  I just got off my 3rd digital QSO, this time using PSK-63!  I think the problem was probably having my sample rate or audio settings incorrect for my particular sound card, operating system, etc. combined with my inadequate training.  The CheckSR utility was a big help, but FLDIGI was a significant step up and I won't be going back to Digipan.  Thanks again everyone.  What a great hobby!

73's
Glenn
KG6SII
« Last Edit: March 11, 2012, 12:00:19 AM by KG6SII » Logged
KB6HOH
Member

Posts: 189




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« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2012, 01:29:43 AM »

Glen,

       I am sure glad we got you going. After you get comfortable with PSK31 lets try Olivia.
Also when you work your next QSO ask the other Station how your Signal looks on the Waterfall.
We want to make sure its NO wider than the PSK31 Bandwidth markers. Also next opportunity when the Bands behave themselves lets get on 40m and see what we can do. Good luck and have fun!

                                                    73 de Steve KB6HOH
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AI7RR
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Posts: 164




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« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2012, 09:59:25 AM »


WOW, another excellent success story of hams helping hams. Great job, guys. I could read threads like this all day.

73, Roger
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WV9K
Member

Posts: 7




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« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2012, 07:24:44 PM »

I'm just getting into the digital modes and trying to get active again.  Years ago I was doing pactor, packet and rtty.

This thread was certainly helpful to me too.  So *MANY* digital modes to try to figure out :-).  Using fldigi and have some ideas now.

Hams helping hams, just like it was when I got started!

Tnx es 73 All, WV9K.
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KB3WCV
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2012, 04:17:51 PM »

If I can add my two cents.  I use DigiPan very successfully but it is tricky.  It depend on your setup.  I have an older rig and I use the computer sound card.  The thing that is important is that when running digiPan, under configure/Band window, the correct band and the radio frequency must be activated and exactly matched.  That is the frequency entered in this window must match your radio frequency.  Once this is set, you will not have to adjust the radio.  If this is not set properly, you will transmit and receive on different frequency.

73  Wayne
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