Any way to have an Automatic Antenna Switch with Flex-3000?
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Any way to have an Automatic Antenna Switch... Expand / Collapse
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Posted Monday, December 3, 2012 9:50 PM
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No, it´s not that cable. That one is from the Firewire 400 mbit/s 6 pin to the smaller one 4 pins, normally found in notebooks. iMacs uses the new 800 mbit/s connector.

I own a high quality Granite cable, so I ordered an adapter. I know that it´s not a good idea an adapter, but it is what I can get fast to give a try. I ordered too a high quality Belkin 800 quad shielded cooper cable from UK, but this could take weeks to arrive.

It´s very frustrating, since the software freezes all the time. Sometimes in the first minute, sometime after a while. I think is very weird this software crashing just because the cable is not handling the data. With any audio device, if this happens, you get pauses in the audio and not the whole software crashing.

73 from PY2JF


73/PY2JF - João Roberto

[Flex-3000]
Post #6184
Posted Tuesday, December 4, 2012 1:41 PM
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Just talked to Granite Digital, and as you said, they in fact have this 800/400 cable. Just ordered one. Let´s see how long will it takes to arrive. Meanwhile, I will test an adapter with a Granite cable I have here.

I ran the Flexradio which shows the DPC times, and I never have time longer the 273us. In fact, just two of this order in more than 15 minutes. The display shows the following:

<100us <200us <300us
70234 78 2

No other value is over zero.

This mean something to you Bill?


73/PY2JF - João Roberto

[Flex-3000]
Post #6189
Posted Tuesday, December 4, 2012 6:33 PM
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Also, on your desk top before you start flex software there is a incon that says Flex Radio. Go into global settings and check what operation mode you are on.There are 4 of them. they mostly recommend safe mode1. If this is not set properly the software can be unstable. Give them a try.
Post #6190
Posted Wednesday, December 5, 2012 10:52 AM
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The cable is probably not the fault - if it disconencts the rig from software after 15mins each time? (sounds like software).

If you disconnect power from the Flex, or remove the FW cable before closing Power SDR, then you crash the application and maybe the FW port too, hence a reboot.

I suspect a big latency dropout is causing this for you - disable your virus scanner and try it again.

Then try updates for networking hardware - WLAN drivers are a big problem also for lag.

I see you emulating windows 7 on the iMac.  Its a fast machine but I wouldnt bet thats not the problem here....

Kind Regards,
Steve M1BJR
Somerset UK

Post #6191
Posted Wednesday, December 5, 2012 2:42 PM
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He says the freezing happens any time, sometimes a minute and sometimes a while later.

So here is where we are,,,suggestions

Change firewire cable

Stop all virus programs

May be something running on computer in conflict with SDR, like any scanning software.

Check in global settings for operation mode, safe mode 1

Update firewire drivers

All these have been known to cause problems for Flex.

If none of these help you, I suggest calling Flex and have them help you, they are good to talk to over the phone.

Post #6193
Posted Saturday, December 8, 2012 12:23 PM
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Thank you all for the feedback!

The problem: PowerSDR frezzes anytime. Can be a minute or two hours later. Looks like when I´m talking with someone crashes less than when just listening. When it crashes, I just get the Flex recognized if I perform a boot. I´m not emulating Windows, I´m running via Boot Camp, as dual boot and my iMac is a pretty fast quad core.

What I already tried:

1) As Bill suggested, I tried the suggested mode and makes no difference, I tried all other modes just in case with no results;
2) I tried also run as administrator and with several combinations of compatibility modes. No luck here;
3) I´m using a FW cable that looks to have a very good quality and this very cable always worked just fine with my Presonus with no drops. Well, maybe that application is not so demanding. But I ordered an adapter which looks pretty well made with gold contacts and tried with a 400/400 Granite cable and the behavior did not changed at all. Just in case I ordered a 800/400 from Granite which will not need the adapter;
4) I uninstalled and stopped every single software and services with no relationship to PowerSDR. No antivirus here. Nope;
5) Looking for DPC times I rarely have anything over 273us. When freezes, the Flex software freezes too and there is no way to check the times. I installed a third party software to check DPC and this one not freezes together and show nothing special when PowerSDR freezes.
6) I keep an eye in the CPU and memory loads and when crashes, not a single spike in both. By the way, my PC run the Power SDR well under 20% of CPU capacity.
7) I tried the following 3 FW drivers:

1394 OHCI Compliant Host Controller
1394 OHCI Compliant Host Controller (Legacy)
LSI1394 OHCI Compliant Host Controller

Those drivers above are the same you have or I should try others?

Switching between them did not change anything at all:

To me looks like is not the FW cable, but FW driver or anything else. I even considering formatting and re installing Windows 7, which I would rather not want.

I really think Flex is a fantastic option and I would never look back for a traditional transceiver. But this FW problem is the Achilles' heel of Flex radios 1500/3000/5000. I´m a pretty savvy PC user and I´m having hard time to deal with this. A ordinary Windows user would return the Flex in no time having to deal with all this.

On top of that, ATTN or Pre Amp options make no differences in the signal. I hear a relay clicking when changing but nothing happens. Would it be a hardware problem?

You all are being of great help. Any other suggestion is welcome.


73/PY2JF - João Roberto

[Flex-3000]
Post #6198
Posted Sunday, December 9, 2012 3:26 PM
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Finally problem solved!

What I did:

I realized the problem was less frequent when using to talk instead just listening. So I started to suspect about some kind of power save mode. But I already changed some settings some days with no effect. My screen saver, sleep mode was turned off and nothing. So I decided to get a stopwatch and measure the time to freeze. Well, after I leave the mouse alone and not touching the PC anymore, after exactly 10 minutes PowereSDR freezes.

So I started to look in all settings and took this patch:

1) Right click with the mouse on desktop;
2) Personalize;
3) Screen Saver;
4) Change Power Settings;
5) Change Plan Settings in Balanced;
6) Change Advanced Power Settings;
7) PCI Express
8) Link State Power Management and turned off.

Bingo! Not a single problem anymore! I can use either my old cable or the Granite with the adapter in any Flex Mode with no freezes at all.

Thank you everybody for the suggestions and help!

Now I will proceed with the tests, virtual cables and finally enjoy this technology.


73/PY2JF - João Roberto

[Flex-3000]
Post #6201
Posted Monday, December 10, 2012 5:32 PM
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Good news - thank you for posting back, many do not!

So the Port was going to sleep mode (power save)

Good find

Kind Regards,
Steve M1BJR
Somerset UK

Post #6209
Posted Monday, December 10, 2012 5:56 PM
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And strangely enough, nobody looks to have had this problem I had...

73/PY2JF - João Roberto

[Flex-3000]
Post #6213
Posted Tuesday, December 11, 2012 9:58 AM
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Wow, yes your problem is rare, and I have been with Fex for years. But this info is very valuable and should help others in the future. It was hard seeing you go through all this and coming close to giving up on it. With the last two or three updates there has been very little problems reported with PSDR, it would have been a shame to see you miss out on such a great radio,,,Bill  have FUN

As for what is happening with the Att and preamp. By default the Flex has a set threshold of signal to noise. If the signal falls inside that threshold than the preamp may not increase much if any at all. Same as with the Att. If the noise floor is weak the Att may not kick in either. It is a smart receiver, so signals can not become distorted. On most of the big box transceivers if you turn on the preamp, it will boost signals even if it is not needed, this can cause distortion as the receiver overloads. When conditions are right both the Att and pramp will come to life. This may  depend on the band you are on also. Check this good read. http://kc.flexradio.com/KnowledgebaseArticle50411.aspx

Post #6220
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