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RSPduo N1MM+ with or without WB? #spectrum

Victor Paul
 

I recently acquired an RSPduo dual channel SDR brick and would like to incorporate it into N1MM+ in order to get a spectral bandmap with callsign spots.  After reading the N1MM+ manual I'm a little confused as to whether the use of WB (N2IC's Waterfall Bandmap program) is required or not or whether I have a choice of using WB or not.  If its not required, (but can be used to gain extra capability), please expound.

My transceiver is a TS-590SG, so I won't need an external TR switch, I just plug the tuner 1 jack into the DRV spigot on the back of the TS-590 and press and hold the DRV/meter button to make the DRV jack a RX Ant Out port.

I know I have to download and install the proper EXTIO.dll from SDRplay, and get the right one (there is a separate version for the RSPduo it appears), but do I put that in the N1MM+ directory or do I need to install WB and park that EXTIO.dll under WB?

After I get that part figured out, my next questions will be whether I can use the 2nd channel in the RSPduo to display a 2nd band linked to the other VFO in an SO2V configuration with a 2nd spectral bandmap.  Of course to do this I'll put a two way power divider between the TS-590SG's DRV jack and the 2 RF inputs on the RSPduo.  That will come later.  Before I run with that I need to walk with a single channel.

So, what are my recommended options here?

Victor WB0TEV

ve3ki
 

The choice is yours.

1. You can place a copy of the ExtIO dll for your RSP in the C:\Program Files (x86)[N1MM Logger+ directory, and then in the Spectrum Display window select IQ via ExtIO dll as your Spectrum Source in the right-click menu. You will need to use the Setup window from the < near the top right of the window (below the font sizer arrows), select the I/Q tab, and select the ExtIO dll name to match the name of the dll you placed in the N1MM Logger+ program directory. You would use the RX Ant Out feed from the rig as the signal source for the RSP.

2. Alternatively, you can download Waterfall Bandmap, set it up in its own directory (do not put it anywhere in the C:\Program Files or C:\Program Files (x86) paths), and put a copy of the ExtIO dll in that directory. You can then set up WB to use the RSP as its spectrum source, with the RSP getting its signal source either from the RX Ant Out as above, or from an IF output if your radio supports that. WB can be configured to use either method (RF or IF). Either way, you configure the N1MM+ Spectrum Display window to use "for all other radios, source named" as its spectrum source and enter Waterfall Bandmap as the name of the source.

I'd suggest trying them both to see which one works better for you.

I don't know if there is a way to use the second channel in the RSP. You can certainly open two Spectrum Display windows in N1MM+ and have each one associated with a different VFO (Radio 1 and Radio 2). If you had two separate SDRs with different ExtIO dlls, you could set one up for each VFO. However, I do not believe both spectrum display windows can have the same ExtIO dll open at the same time. Even if you had one window using the dll from the N1MM+ program directory and the other window using a different copy of the dll (e.g. from Waterfall Bandmap), and even if each copy of the dll allowed you to select which channel it was using (which might or might not be the case for the RSPduo dll), I don't know whether both copies of the dll could connect to the same RSP at the same time - I would suspect that this might not be possible.

73,
Rich VE3KI


On Thu, Aug 8, 2019 at 12:57 AM, Victor Paul wrote:
I recently acquired an RSPduo dual channel SDR brick and would like to incorporate it into N1MM+ in order to get a spectral bandmap with callsign spots.  After reading the N1MM+ manual I'm a little confused as to whether the use of WB (N2IC's Waterfall Bandmap program) is required or not or whether I have a choice of using WB or not.  If its not required, (but can be used to gain extra capability), please expound.

My transceiver is a TS-590SG, so I won't need an external TR switch, I just plug the tuner 1 jack into the DRV spigot on the back of the TS-590 and press and hold the DRV/meter button to make the DRV jack a RX Ant Out port.

I know I have to download and install the proper EXTIO.dll from SDRplay, and get the right one (there is a separate version for the RSPduo it appears), but do I put that in the N1MM+ directory or do I need to install WB and park that EXTIO.dll under WB?

After I get that part figured out, my next questions will be whether I can use the 2nd channel in the RSPduo to display a 2nd band linked to the other VFO in an SO2V configuration with a 2nd spectral bandmap.  Of course to do this I'll put a two way power divider between the TS-590SG's DRV jack and the 2 RF inputs on the RSPduo.  That will come later.  Before I run with that I need to walk with a single channel.

So, what are my recommended options here?

Victor WB0TEV

galoot@...
 

I also have the RSPduo / TS-590SG combination and tried a few configurations but ended up using the SDRuno s/w as my spectral bandmap. Callsign spots are not displayed on it of course but is not an issue for me. I chose this approach so I can monitor 2 bands and QSY instantly via OMNIRIG. The 590 follows clicking on the SDRuno window including band changes and the SDRuno display follows tuning the 590 VFO as well when clicking on spots in the bandmap window in N1MM. I use both the 590 RS232 serial port (OMNIRIG) and the USB port for N1MM. In my setup I run N1MM in one PC and SDRuno in a separate PC (networked) as they are both ancient computers and loading was an early issue for me. Also I use the SO2V configuration and a MiniCircuits splitter. I did go one step further in that I added a relay delay circuit triggered by the 590 remote port to terminate the DRV port O/P in 50 ohms so as to reduce the RF to the RSPduo in transmit mode. I used the menu function for linear amplifier control to incorporate a XMIT delay to allow the relay time to close. A REMOTE connector pin and a simple circuit opens the DRV connection to the splitter. That step was probably not required but this way I see only an S9 signal on transmit in the SDRuno display so the RSPduo is well protected and safe from overload. I had no feeling for the signal leakage level from the DRV port and wanted to protect the SDR. Probably overkill though! When the PC is upgraded I may try the configuration using the N1MM spectrum display again, but I fear Rich is correct wrt both spectrum display windows using the same ExtIO dll at the same time. In the ExtIO dll there is an option for dual mode so if N1MM supports that option it may be worth a try. 
Hope this helps..
Jim VE6JF

Victor Paul
 

Thanks Rich.
I opted to do the straight to N1MM+ Spectrum window route and forgo putting WB in between.  Seemed easier with one less thing to get mis-configured. I suspect that using WB either by itself or as a feed to N1MM+ may offer some capability that omitting it doesn't afford, if so, I'd like to know what I might be missing.

I tried a couple things to see if I could get 2 spectrum windows going from the RSPduo, by putting N1MM+ in SO2V mode, opening the SDR UI and selecting Dual mode then trying to open a spectrum window from the 2nd N1MM+ Entry Window, but all I succeeded in doing was locking up N1MM+ and screwing things up pretty well.  I had to do some reboots, Permanently Delete this Window (not sure if that was necessary) and resetting some things the SDR UI that somehow got goofed up (it got itself set to Zero IF instead of Low IF, dropped its gain to almost zilch, and something else I've already forgotten).

Anyway, its up and working now on a single channel basis.  If in the future, someone comes up with a method or updated S/W to allow two spectrum windows in N1MM+ via an SDRplay RSPduo, I'd be pleased to learn of it.

73 and see you on the waterfalls,

Victor WB0TEV / V31VP