[amsat-bb] Re: Equipment/Software

David - KG4ZLB kg4zlb at googlemail.com
Sat May 9 15:19:52 PDT 2009


I just wanted to update my comment about only being able to control only 
one Icom radio with SatPC32 without the proper Icom CI-V deely!
Both Tim and Stan sent me e-mails and I then entered into e-mail 
correspondence with Erich.

After visiting CellPhone Shack, (sorry "RadioShack"), I purchased a 
splitter and then connected the 706MKIIG and the 910 and changed the 
CI-V addresses in SatPC32 and yes, I now have control of both radio's 
from SatPC32 which means that I can uplink on 2m using the 706 when 
AO-51 is in v/s mode and also receive on 10m using the 706 for AO-7 in 
Mode A.

Yet another addition to my long line of recommendations for the use of 



David - KG4ZLB wrote:
> Hi Mike,
> Well I am sure that my set-up is very similar to a lot of other op's 
> on this board but here goes!
> 1) Radio is an Icom 910HX, Rotator is the G5500 and SatPC32 to do the 
> tracking!
> Why SatPC32? Because its a dedicated program that does exactly what it 
> says on the tin (unlike Ham Radio Deluxe which is a jack of all trades 
> and master of none, IMHO, and still has Icom issues), has  great 
> customer service, all sale proceeds go to AMSAT and a lot of people on 
> the BB use it so there is no shortage of help when needed (Thanks to 
> Alan, WA4SCA!)
> 2) Interface between 910 and PC is a CI-V clone cable available on 
> e-bay for less than $20
> 3) Interface between PC and G5500 is an LVB Tracker - why?
> Again, profits to AMSAT, super after sales service, it works and works 
> well and it really looks nice in my shack! If you have the money then 
> sure, go buy the Yeasu alternative but you can buy an awful lot of 
> other goodies with the change that an LVB will give you!
> 4) Because I do not have the "proper" Icom CI-V unit, I can only 
> control one radio at a time with SatPC32 so when AO-51 is in Mode S, I 
> use the 910 for the receive side allowing SatPC 32 to calculate the 
> doppler. For transmitting, say on 2m (When in Mode V/S) I use my Icom 
> 706MKIIG and just leave the transmit frequency alone - works like a 
> charm. When AO-51 is in Mode L/S then SatPC32 can do everything I need 
> through the 910. The 706 is only used when Mode S is on as it ties up 
> the 2m band.
> 5) 1.2Ghz antenna is the helical antenna built and sold by Bob, W7LRD 
> - its solid, performs excellently, Bob is on hand in the event of 
> problems and he donates 20% of each sale to AMSAT.
> 6) Currently I have a BBQ dish feeding a downconverter but I spoke to 
> Bob (W7LRD) about ordering a 2.4ghz helical antenna which will replace 
> the BBQ dish as its rather heavy and cumbersome. but again, it works 
> and as I paid $15 for it and the downconverter, I really can't 
> complain. But with Dayton next week, I am saving my pennies so I will 
> order the antenna when I get back.
> Now one thing that I did not see on your list was pre-amps!
> Again in my opinion, you really can not do without them. A lot of 
> people will steer you towards SSB Electronics or ARR as sources and 
> yes, they are great pre-amps but if you are putting a station together 
> and you have the 910 have a think about the much maligned Icom 
> pre-amps - yes, I know they do not publish noise figures and everyone 
> says they are crap etc, etc but you can not blow them up by 
> transmitting through them, they do not need a separate DC feed, they 
> are readily available and they do work. Last evening I had an SO-50 15 
> degree pass out over the Atlantic and I worked a station and then 
> turned the pre-amp off afterwards and I could not hear him. That 
> pre-amp made the difference between a successful QSO or not one at all.
> Now I know that people reading this will say, "hang on, 15 degrees, 
> why the big problem?" but let me explain that currently I live in an 
> HOA community that does not like you painting the front door or 
> changing the brand of toilet tissue without having written permission 
> from the Board of very old people with far too much time on their 
> hands. So my antennas are probably no more than 6 feet off of the 
> ground within the confines of a pool cage. Whilst that sounds very 
> restrictive, and to an extent it is, I work all of the analogue birds, 
> the ISS and I get pictures from the weather sats. Last month I worked 
> 171 stations. So it can be done.
> I hope that some of the above is of use, if you want any pictures of 
> what I have here then please e-mail me off the BB and I would be happy 
> to send you some.
> 73's for now
> David


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