X-108 Info Best rig control programs for X108G?

Discussion in 'X-108' started by KH6BE, Aug 20, 2016.

  1. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Good USB Cable:

    Just as an aside, I have been trying different cables to connect my X108G to my And roid Smart phone to use PocketRxTx. Often needeing to have adapters as the connector on the phone is the new USB-C type not the old micro-USB and also as the Smart Phone has to see a line lifted in voltage in the usb-0C plug so that it knows to work as the "host" not the "client" (the so called OTG or On The Go function).

    As I was getting interference from the smart-phone into the X108G receiver, I have tried different ferrite clamp-on and ferrite core solutions and longer and longer cables until the USB signals were lost. I found a plug-in board that does a good job of filtering RF noise but this is a board and two cables (one of them using an USB-Mini connector).

    I was surpised when a couple of months ago, I came a cross a USB-C to USB-micro cable which was supposed to have OTG wired at the usb-c end. Well for 0.99 UK pence (Euro 1.15) including postage, I decided to order one. It took some time to come (from China) but I am very happy to announce that this cable works AND despite (or perhaps because of) its SHORT length doesn't seem to transfer the phone-noise into the X108G's receiver!

    Here's a link to the cable on eBay.

    Mobile Phones Connector OTG Cable USB Type-C Adapter Charger Cord Data Wire 6938630693207 | eBay
     
  2. tscrim1
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    tscrim1 Chef-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Ah, that makes sense. I will get the readings, but it might take a while. This weekend we have a field day, and then I'm travelling for work for a week. Added to that is the fact that the G90 doesn't have an RF gain control. I'll rig up an attenuator to get the S levels. What command do I need to send?

    T.
     
  3. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Hi Tim,
    No need to set up an attentuator - just tune off the side of a signal until you get the various values on the S-meter on the G90. No RF gain control? That seems a bit satrange to me but I know SDRs are different.

    You will need to send the command from a terminal program (by the way when v4 of PocketRxTx and JaREc are released Jarec has a terminal program built-in exactly for this use. I use the windows program "RealTerm" at the moment but any character based terminal program will do.

    The X108G and hence I hope the G90 is auto-speed sensing on the USB port but for the other settings use 8N1.

    The command (without the commas) is FE,FE,70,E0,15,02,FD (this is to be sent in Hex Mode).
    The rig will return 9 characters and it's the 8th character that we are interested in.

    73 Ed.
     
  4. DO1HFS
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    DO1HFS Beginner X-108 Member

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    I use for Remote-Control the RCForb Software. As Radio use the ICOM IC7000 Settings.
     
  5. Steen
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    Steen Beginner X-108 Member

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    Where can I find a description of the CAT protocol for x108g outdoor
     
  6. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    The CiV protocol for the X108G is not documented ANYWHERE!

    Start with the ICOM IC-7000 commands and then test which work and which don't (or work differently).

    73 Ed.
     
  7. tscrim1
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    tscrim1 Chef-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Hi Ed - sorry I've been out of the loop on this for a while (life keeps getting in the way of radio...). The attached CIV reference is now doing the rounds on the FB groups. Hope it might help you with the PRxTx definitions.
     

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  8. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Thanks for this. I'll compare this with what I have in the config file for PocketRxTx for the G-90 and if needed, get a new Radio configuration file uploaded to the central repository so those wanting to remote control their G-90 can do so easily from their Android Smartphones and PocketRxTx (either free (with adverts)) or the full $5 paid version. My advice is to try the free version and if you're happy, buy the full version (it's cheap enough and we should support the author - which isn't me!). Currently, version 3 is in use and works well, version 4 is planned with new features but as always the author is paying for development out of his own pocket.
    I issued a new radio file for the X108G to the Central repository a couple of weeks back - no major changes just added an extra power level of 3W which is a good level to drive the Chinese 50/70/100W amplifiers at.

    73 Ed.
     
  9. tscrim1
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    tscrim1 Chef-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Cheers Ed. I do have the Pro version, and will encourage others to upgrade. It's a great app. I know of one chap with a dead display on his X108 who's still happily using the rig thanks to prxtx.

    73
    Tim
    4X1ST/G8RGQ
     
  10. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Hi Tim,
    when I found that the OLED display in the later X108G that I have is totally un-readable in any level of sunshine (XIEGU changed from a TFT screen with contrast and brightness controls to an OLED display with no contrast or brightness adjustment on the basis that in the outdoor model it "would be easier to see the OLED display" - you got that one TOTALLY WRONG Xiegu designers!) I started looking for some way to get an external display on the rig which is what led me to PocketRxTx. When I contacted Dan, the author, I found him to be very helpful and open to extending the models supported by his program (which has been around many years by the way).
    I've now managed to get to use my OTG supporting An-Droid Smartphones (note several phones say they support OTG and even test programs say they do, but they don't) connected either via USB (Micro USB and USB-C) to the X108G or over the LAN/WAN using a Raspberry Pi so the RPi is connected via USB to the X108G runs a free server program and from there I can connect and operate the rig from anywhere that has Internet connectivity (either via WiFi or Cell Phone data network). As the major part of the processing happens on the phone, the solution is very responsive. (unlike the new MFJ solution, which doesn't support the X108G in any case I think, and has the user GUI web-based and is only limited configurable).
    I also have tried to get PRxTx to work with the X-108G over Bluetooth. In this case, as the rig has no "true" serial output only the USB socket I was unable to make several different solutions work.

    Now the G-90 has a "true serial port" (and no USB), so one of the Chinese Bluetooth dongles may be able to be made to work with the G-90.

    All in all, it's taken a while to get the PocketRxTx remote display / remote control solution working but it certainly makes using the X108G portable much more enjoyable than it was.

    73 Ed DD5LP / G8GLM.
     
  11. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Hi tscrim1,
    I've just put up a test G90 (v2) on the central repository - if you have a G90, could you please load this and test the following functions to see if they are now working please:
    New 3W power option (used to drive the Chinese 50/70/100W power amplifiers)
    AGC - according to the chart supplied this feature appears to use a different setting on the G90 to the X108G.
    ATU (NEW) - on/off/tune.
    Speech Compressor (NEW) - on/off
    Noise Blanker (NEW) - on/off
    Squelch slider, when Pre-amp turned on (doesn't work on X108G may be fixed on G90).
    Tuning step (location of cursor in display) - works on X108G but not listed as an option on the G90 CiV command sheet so might not work on G90.
    SWR values shown - presently calibrated for the X108G - may be way off in the G90.

    73 Ed.
     
  12. KN4MNI
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    KN4MNI Junior Boarder X-108 Member

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    Thanks for all the info. Just passed general and trying to get into digital modes. This should be helpful.
     
  13. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Hi
    Shane,
    If the digital modes you are talking about are the ones supported by the WSJTx program (WSPR, FT4, FT8 etc.) you're in luck as support specifically for the X108G exists in the radio pull-down list when you configure the software.

    73 Ed.
     
  14. KN4MNI
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    KN4MNI Junior Boarder X-108 Member

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    I am, I found the X108G in the drop-down menu but I'm still having issues. WSJT-X gives me an error message.

    Error: Rig failure Hamlib error: communication bus error while getting current frequency.

    I'm currently using the XGGCOMS cable for the X108G with a laptop running Windows 8.1 but I've also tried on Windows 7 and a Raspberry Pi. All give the same error. I have the driver downloaded and installed on both Windows machines.

    I've tried several baud rates and post settings. What am I missing?

     
  15. DD5LP
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    Hi Shane, do you have a normal smartphone USB-A to micro-USB cable - often used with a charger?

    I thought the XGGComms lead was only for audio - it plugs into the accessory socket, right? For digital data, you will need that as well as the USB to USB cable.

    This is how I have my X108G settings in WSJTx - the comm port for CAT commands will depend on where the serial port chip in the X108G is. Check Device Manager in Windows to see where it is.

    upload_2020-4-15_20-43-39.png

    73 Ed.
     
  16. KN4MNI
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    KN4MNI Junior Boarder X-108 Member

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    I'm using a micro USB in addition to the XGGcoms cable. I'm getting audio into WSJT-X now so that's a start.

    I was wrong, I'm not on win8.1, it's 10. Device manager shows only Com4, with one unknown USB device. I'll assume I'm still missing the radio driver?
     
  17. DD5LP
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    Hi Shane,
    I agree with your conclusions. Until you have a working serial comms driver for the STM32 chip in the X108G (the unknown USB device in Device manager), installed on your Windows 10 PC, you will get this kind of error message from the HamLib code behind WSJTx.

    You're looking for a file called VCP_V1.3.1_Setup_x64.exe or VCP_V1.3.1_Setup_32bit.exe (if you are running a 32 bit version of Windows).

    I've just tried uploading these files as a zip and although it says I can upload a file up to 27MB in site and the zip is less than 6 MB, I get the error that the file is too large for the server to handle! - Go figure!

    I sent you a private link in an email.

    73 Ed.
     
  18. KN4MNI
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    KN4MNI Junior Boarder X-108 Member

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    I got the driver and installed. Did a couple of reboots to make sure it stuck and I still have an unknown device in device manager. It goes away when I unplug the usb cat cable so it's the radio. What is the next step I'm missing?
    upload_2020-4-15_16-21-37.png
     

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  19. DD5LP
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    DD5LP Crack-Boarder X-108 Member

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    Do you have a different USB-A to micro-USB cable that you can try? I think the cable you have used is one that is meant only to charge a phone, not to transfer data. Also please avoid long cables, the X108G interface is not as sensitive as some. So a 1m or 1.5m cable may be the longest it will support.

    73 Ed.
     
  20. KN4MNI
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    KN4MNI Junior Boarder X-108 Member

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    OK, I was using a 10' cable. The "communication error getting frequency" is now replaced with "IO error opening connection to rig."
     

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