Discussion in 'X-108 TRX' started by admin, Jun 10, 2016.
Where can I get a cable that will work for the Din socket?
Normal component suppliers such as Farnell or Radio Spares will have the plug but even simpler is to use an old computer PS/2 mouse or keyboard cable as they use the same connector. You'll need a mutimeter to find out which core of the cable goes to which pin in a pre-made plug. Here's the pin-out of the socket:
Thanks but I mean where can I find a pre-made cable that I can purchase that will work for this purpose?
Well if you're looking for a data connection to a PC, with full isolation of circuits (which you "ought" to have) look at the solutions from this amateur Steve G8XGG in the UK- as far as I know, at the moment, he's the only one making cables for the X108G:
Icom, Yaesu and Kenwood CAT and PSK31 Interfaces - Xiegu - Wouxon Shop
For those who don't want to make up their own cables, there is now a commercially produced one for the Xiegu X-108G here:
Xiegu/Wouxon X108G Fully Isolated USB Digimode Interface. PSK31, Echolink etc | eBay
Trying to get Windows 10 Home to recognize Xiegu X108 on USB. Have down loaded/installed the driver but Windows 10 complains that "The last USB device you connected to this computer has malfunctioned and Windows does not recognize it." The installation instructions say after installing the driver "Then make the program location to file x108_cdc_virualcom". I am thinking that they are referring to the associated .INF file that came with the download, but I'm not clear on what to do with it. Any ideas? Thanks, Henry
I had a similar problem. if you look through these threads there are links to two different sets of USB driver files. the first I found gave me the same problem you are seeing - the second ones are fine.
By the way - install the drivers first and only then connect the X-108G to the PC. Look in the Windows Device Manager - if you have an item under USB devices that is called something like "unidentified device" and it has a small yellow triangle against it, you need to uninstall this driver (right mouse button and select uninstall), then pull out the USB cable to the rig. Install the correct driver files (which will actually just put the files somewhere on your PC) then REBOOT the PC (for some reason that is needed with these drivers) and lastly connect the USB cable to the rig again and turn the rig on.
Now check the Device manager and under the COM: and LPT: ports section, you should see an entry for a virtual com port from ST Microelectronics.
The driver install package is called either VCP_V1.3.1_Setup-32bit.exe (if you are using a 32 bit version of Windows 10) or VCP_V1.3.1_Setup_x64.exe (if you are running a 64 bit version of Windows 10).
It's the files in the 4th. message down in the thread: X-108 Info - Xiegu X-108G Outdoor QRP-Transceiver - files and mods | Xiegu X-108 - QRP Transceiver - HamRadio - QRP Forum
They are rar files so you'll need something like the free 7-zip program to extract the exe files from the rar package.
73 Ed DD5LP.
PS. For the data link I have taken a Radio Arena data cable intended for a Yaesu FT-747GXII rig, which I no longer have and adapted it (in place of the three phono plugs added the 6 pin mini DIN for PTT and audio in to the rig and a stereo 3.5mm jack to plug into the speaker out socket on the X108G). I have this working between my Windows 10 Home (x64) laptop and the X108G and am running FT8 succesfully. In addition to this cable which carries the audio data interface with PTT, I also installed a micro-USB to USB-A cable (as used for charging smartphones) to do the CAT controls (CAT software on the PC set as looking at an ICOM IC-7000).
Thanks for the quick reply Ed. I uninstalled the 64 bit version of the VCP_V1.3.1 Setup file and tried to install the 32 bit version, but got a message from the installer saying that I needed to install the 64 bit version. So I re-installed the 64 bit version. It installs successfully, but when the USB cable from the Xiegu X108 is connected to the PC, Windows says unrecognized device. In the device manager under USB controller the device is shown with a yellow triangle and the message Unknown USB Device (Device Descriptor Request Failed). I tried different USB cables but no success so far.
That IS a driver install problem - the "Unknown USB Device (Device Descriptor Request Failed)" message is exactly what I got. If you have anopther cable, by all means try that however something else to try is at this point: I have attached a zipped ciopy of the required INF file that should have been used - unzip this to a temporary directory on your PC.
Go into device manager (right click "This PC" then select "manage" and when the console loads, click on device manager). Go to the faulty entry in Device Manager and do an update driver option - search my PC, and give the location of where the "x108_cdc_virualcom.inf" is and let it install / update using that inf file. reboot the PC and see if the yellow triangle has gone under the USB devices section in device manager and a new (without error) entry has appeared under the COM and LPT port section.
Sorry Henry, I think I pointed you at the wrong driver pack - the one paut up by the administrator here: X-108 - X108 series driver (include X108G) 64 bit - V-1.3.1 | Xiegu X-108 - QRP Transceiver - HamRadio - QRP Forum is what you need. OR this one if you run 32bit Windows: X-108 - X108 series driver (include X108G) 32 bit - V-1.3.1 | Xiegu X-108 - QRP Transceiver - HamRadio - QRP Forum
Also this retailer seems to keep good links to firmware, manuals etc. (but make sure these match your version of the X108-G!)
Xiegu X108G outdoor QRP HF transceiver low cost
Thanks Ed. I finally got it to work. I must have installed/uninstalled the 64 bit driver a dozen times with no success. The thing that got it to work was that I connected a 4 port USB 2.0 hub to one of the USB ports on the laptop, and the Xiegu into the hub. As soon as I turned on the Xiegu the COM and LPT ports showed up in the device manager with the STMicroelectronics virtual COM port driver as COM5.
I started the WSJT-X program and was able to communicate with the Xiegu. Yeah!!!
Thanks for your help with this.
73 Henry WJ1S
That's great news Henry,
By adding the hub in series you've caused Windows to see the Xiegu as a new device. The same would have occured if you connected the cable into a USB port on the laptop that it hadn't been connected to before. Either of these actions causes Windows to re-install the driver files and it looks first to the system directories on your local disk and then to the Internet for the drivers. As you will have had the correct (working) drivers on your hard disk at this point, it picked those up and installed them, replacing the faulty ones.
You're now at the same point I am, so I'd be interested to see how this performs as I now have an intermittant problem where the USB control link drops out and Hamlib complains. I wonder if you are getting the same effect? Are you able to transmit through WSJT-x at the moment or are you just receiving? Are you using JT65 or FT8 or a different mode from WSJT-x ? I have FT8 decoding fine but when I go to transmit there's a delay before the Xiegu goes onto transmit and such delays mess up the FT-8 timing. At present I am using a separate PTT link using the ptt pin in the Mini-DIN plug. It should also be possible to switch to Tx via the USB (Ci-V) link cable. Which are you doing and are you able to transmit?
If you are running PTT via the USB link, what speed, data and stop bits have you configured for the virtual serial port and I presume you have the rig model set to IC-7000 in WSJT-x (which uses Hamlib)? I have the feeling that setting the speed of this serial link higher adds stability but I'm not sure, so I'd be interested to know what speed you have the link set to and whether you are doing PTT via USB or via the Mini-DIN.
73 Ed DD5LP.
Hi Ed. So far I am receive only using FT-8.
WSJT-X has an entry for the Xiegu X108G in the drop-down box in the settings menu Radio tab. Clicking the "Test CAT" button returns a good status. When I change frequency using the Xiegu it is reflected in WSJT-X, so it seems to be working. The baud rate is set to 4800 with 8 data bits and 2 stop bits, and VOX is selected as the PTT method. But I have not tried transmitting, so that remains to be tested.
I bought a pre-made interface cable Xiegu/Wouxon X108G Fully Isolated USB Digimode Interface. PSK31, Echolink etc | eBay for the connections from the laptop to the Xiegu. There's no documentation with it, but I think it just provides the audio in/out connections between the PC and the Xiegu. Audio to the Xiegu via the mini-DIN accessories connector.
Next step for me is to get a transmitting antenna up. I live in a condo so the antenna has to be stealthy.
I will keep you updated.
73 -Henry WJ1S
I don't Believe it!
After having read on this website, several times that one has to select IC-7000 as the rig in the digital software, I never thought that there would be a specific entry for the X108G. Of course what you say is absolutely true. So someone who maintains Hamlib has added the entry I guess. Great! I'll try again this evening and see if I can get this all working properly. I'll set the speed etc. as you jave as a starting point and then see if the link stays stable at higher frequencies. It is important that for FT8 there are no delays in the command system.
Ah yes that's the cable I linked to in some other posts it's from Steve G8XGG in the UK. It isolates the audio in both directions which avoids any chance of earth loops. By the way Steve's working on an updated model that connects audio to the PC via a USB connection rather than the two 3.5mm (1/8") Mic. and Speaker Jacks. He's building a USB audio card into the cable. with modern laptops often not having the old style "legacy" jacks any more (especially not on Windows tablet PCs), The idea of going to a USB interface makes a lot of sense.
By the way, I've been looking at the AUX jack on the Xiegu and "I think" the intention is that this will become an ICOM like Ci-V TTL level interface. The handbook says it's not in use yet, but I expect that is something that can be added through a firmware upgrade. It could then possibly be used to control the Xiego Power Amplifier from the rig. It'll be interesting to see what comes along with the next firmware upgrade.
Thanks for you help, it's great to find someone else at about the same level of knowledge of the Xiegu X108G.
By the way, given your restricted antenna possibilities, the digital modes is going to be a good option to make contacts. If you have a balcony or outside are in the condo, you might consider a tripod mounted vertical or Alex Loop, which is able to be quickly set up and taken down. Being a temporary structure one might argue that the condo's rules don't apply but it's probably better to simply wait for darkness.
Thanks again Henry - everything working now. Changing to the X108G rig in WSJT-x seems to have fixed the dropout. I started at 4800 Baud and am now running the link at 38400 Baud 8 data and 1 stop bit. All seems fine. I haven't been able to get PTT via CAT working but it's working fine without delay using the connection to the ACC socket now and I've had my first FT8 QSO with the X108G with SP9HWD. Not DX particularly but with the rig set at 12.5 watts out - it's working!
Hope you have equal success with the TX side now - you are effectively using the same set-up as I am, so it "ought" to work.
FT8 seems to work.. took a bit of tinkering.
Yes I made my first FT8 contact with the X108G two days ago.
The selection of X108G as the radio in WSJT-x / Hamlib rather than IC-7000 seemed to make all the difference.
I just got in my USB Digimode cable that was suggested on this thread and it doesn't work. HRD doesn't even connect and shows errors. The only way I can get CAT and PTT to work is using a regular USB cable. So I use the USB to get the CAT and PTT to work with WSJT-X by selecting HRD as the radio but when I use the Digmode cable for the audio I am not getting audio signal back into the radio which is why I mainly needed and bought this Digimode cable. It's not showing signal output even when cranking up the audio out volume in windows or the FT8 power slider.
Side note....another odd thing I see is that when the using FT8 on 20m, it's set on 14.074 but then when the PTT transmits it changes it to something like 14.735 then back to 14.074 on receive. This does not happen with the same setup (HRD > WSJT-X) using my IC-7300.
My ic7300 will move to what ever the freq i am transmitting on. Still getting used to the FT8 interface. Then it goes back to 14.074. There is 3 or 4 different was to setup the ic7300.. so not too sure on what is different.
Side note, the 7300 is an awesome radio. The 7610 is not as nice feeling on the knobs as the 7300.
If the cable doesn't work, contact the supplier - there can always be a bad solder joint or whatever. Of course 90% of the time it's not the cable but the wrong drivers that have been installed (or Windows doing silly things). FOR THE USB CABLE - the correct drivers are here: X-108 - X108 series driver (include X108G) 32 bit - V-1.3.1 | Xiegu X-108 - QRP Transceiver - HamRadio - QRP Forum Install these without the cable plugged in, plug in and check there are no errors in device manager.
The digimode cable will have its own USB-Serial controller in it, purely for PTT control - it will have different drivers and should have been suupplied with or a reference given as to where to find them, with the cable. Often these use the FTDI or Prolific PL2302 chipset.
When using WSJT-x (v 1.80 and the latest HamLib files I presume) the X108G is listed under the radio pull down, select that and also the com port number that you see in Windows device manager for the X108G's USB chipset. You dont need to go via HRD.
For clarity the digi-mode cable is the bi-directional isolated audio interface cable, possibly with PTT control via RTS signal. You need in addition to that the USB-A to USB-micro cable that came with the rig to do the cat (frequency, signal strength etc.) control.
WSJT-x (or rather HamLib behinf WSJT-x) appears to do a switch to whatever you have stored as a frequency memory channel and back to test out that the CAT control is working. So you have a programmed memory of 14.375 in the rig I guess. In my cases it goes to 6.070 which is a local amateur owned and run SW AM Broadcast station which I have programmed as a memory. It's correct the cat test for the IC-7300 doesn't do this (I also have an IC-7300).
As yet I haven't been able to get PTT working via CAT (usb) but I have it working via the digimode cable that I modified from another rig, so I don't need PTT to work via USB.
I hope this all helps.
73 Ed DD5LP
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