Question about customizing the QLG2/QLG2-SE serial data #clock #gps


Mont Pierce KM6WT
 

I have the QL Clock, QLG1, and QLG2-SE.

The QRP-Labs QLG2 & QLG2-SE webpages contain links to Manual for the GK9501 chip command set  in Chinese.
And in the group forum's file section there is an English copy translated by Dean Smith (click here).

The clock works really well with the QLG1 gps unit.  However, seems to have a few issues when I try using the QLG2-SE with it.
  • Many times a minute, several Heartbeats are skipped..
  • The Seconds display is erratic, sometimes jumping forward and back, and sometimes advances by 2 seconds.

Looking at the data stream with a terminal program, there is much more data coming in from the G2 than there is with the G1.  I'm thinking that maybe the processing of the data stream is taking too long and could be causing the timing issues I'm seeing.

So, looking at the GK9501 command set, I'm curious to find out if one or both of the following would help:
  1. Increase the Baud rate of the GPS serial data stream to 19.2K or 38.4K
    • Are other standard baudrates available in the QL Clock?  (the manual only mentioned 9600).
  2. Change settings to limit the data being sent. For example:
    • Can I exclude Beidou Satellites?
    • Are there other parameters that can be changed to pare back the quantity of data?

Another question, does the GK9501 have any kind of Master Reset?  Such as, grounding certain pins at power-on?  Just in case I brick the chip and lose communications...  or, just want to reset everything back to Factory Defaults?


Here's a command that looks very interesting:

Command: 639

Set approximate location information and time information to speed up positioning

In my location & conditions, it can take over an hour to sync with the satellites from a "cold" start...


Any suggestions or references greatly appreciated


thanks
km6wt


N3MNT
 

There is a bootloader on the STM site.
You should be able send the needed commands to the module to turn off the unwanted modes. 


Mont Pierce KM6WT
 

On Tue, Aug 31, 2021 at 10:56 AM, Mont Pierce KM6WT wrote:
Are other standard baudrates available in the QL Clock?  (the manual only mentioned 9600).
Actually, on page 9 of the operating manual (click here) it states:

Any baud rate can be entered here. 9,600 is most common and is the default. The kit should be able to support 115kbps but higher than this may be subject to inaccuracies and may not function properly.


Yippee!  115Kbps is supported.  :)  :)

(I knew I should have rechecked...  before posting...)


Thanks Hans!!

km6wt


Alan G4ZFQ
 

On 31/08/2021 18:56, Mont Pierce KM6WT wrote:

The clock works really well with the QLG1 gps unit.  However, seems to have a few issues when I try using the QLG2-SE with it.
I have some notes here https://sites.google.com/site/g4zfqradio/incircuitprogramatmel168#h.tpm1l60t46z NaviTrack is the utility to command the module.

Maybe Hans will comment regarding the clock, otherwise it looks like experiments.

73 Alan G4ZFQ


Alan G4ZFQ
 

On 31/08/2021 19:36, Mont Pierce KM6WT wrote:

Yippee!  115Kbps *is* supported.  :)  :)
Yes, but my tests seem to indicate the QLG2 will not remember a different baud rate, reverting to 9600.
Maybe I did something wrong and you will find otherwise although I tried a few times.

73 Alan G4ZFQ


Mont Pierce KM6WT
 

On Tue, Aug 31, 2021 at 11:37 AM, Alan G4ZFQ wrote:
I have some notes here https://sites.google.com/site/g4zfqradio/incircuitprogramatmel168#h.tpm1l60t46z
Thanks for the link, interesting reading.

NaviTrack is the utility to command the module.
NaviTrack is mentioned on the QRP-Labs G2 webpage near the bottom:

Note here https://www.ebyte.com/en/data-download.html?id=542&pid=485#load is the Navitrack software for the Ebyte module. The Navitrack software may be used to check it, see NMEA, satellites, send commands including the update command.

I downloaded and tried it, but the zip file seems to be incomplete.  I get an error pop-up stating:  "Call to DllRegisterServer failed".  It might be a missing file or a Win 10 issue...

In spite of the error pop-up, NaviTrack opens it's dialog window, but then crashes when I try to connect to the serial port.


Maybe Hans will comment regarding the clock, otherwise it looks like experiments.
I did already mention to Hans the issues I'm having, and, he's got it on his looonnnngggg list of things to do.
Anyways, I thought I try a few things in the meantime.  :)


On Tue, Aug 31, 2021 at 11:41 AM, Alan G4ZFQ wrote:
Yes, but my tests seem to indicate the QLG2 will not remember a different baud rate, reverting to 9600.
Maybe I did something wrong and you will find otherwise although I tried a few times.
Yes, I'm seeing the same thing.  I wonder if this is one of the parameters that would be backed up if I had the SuperCap installed ?
Either that, or software like the NaviTrack may be needed to store the config settings into it's internal flash?



Thanks,
Mont - km6wt


Mont Pierce KM6WT
 

On Tue, Aug 31, 2021 at 10:56 AM, Mont Pierce KM6WT wrote:
The clock works really well with the QLG1 gps unit.  However, seems to have a few issues when I try using the QLG2-SE with it.
  • Many times a minute, several Heartbeats are skipped..
  • The Seconds display is erratic, sometimes jumping forward and back, and sometimes advances by 2 seconds.
I got the Clock running great now with the QLG2-SE.  Sent the following command: 

$PGKC115,1,0,0,0*2B

 
From page 5 of the GK9501 document in the Group Files section (click here)

9. Command: 115
 
Set enable search mode
 
Arguments:
Arg1: "1", GPS on
      "0", GPS off
Arg2: "1", Glonass on
      "0", Glonass off
Arg3: "1", Beidou on
      "0", Beidou off
Arg4: "1", Galieo on
      "0", Galileo off
 
  Example:  $PGKC115,1,0,0,0*2B<CR><LF>


It works great BUT...  on power cycle, the setting reverts back to the default.   :(
Same problem Alan mentions when changing the baud rate.  It doesn't save it, and reverts back to 9600 on power cycle.


73
km6wt


Mont Pierce KM6WT
 

On Tue, Aug 31, 2021 at 06:24 PM, Mont Pierce KM6WT wrote:
NaviTrack is mentioned on the QRP-Labs G2 webpage near the bottom:

Note here https://www.ebyte.com/en/data-download.html?id=542&pid=485#load is the Navitrack software for the Ebyte module. The Navitrack software may be used to check it, see NMEA, satellites, send commands including the update command.

I downloaded and tried it, but the zip file seems to be incomplete.  I get an error pop-up stating:  "Call to DllRegisterServer failed".  It might be a missing file or a Win 10 issue...
Ok, I found my issue causing this failure...

On Win 10, you have to right click on the program name, and select "Run as Administrator".

So I now have NaviTrack talking to my QLG2-SE.  Now, I just need to investigate what it can do, as far as setting/saving custom configurations, like Baudrate, and, setting which satellites to look for.


73,
km6wt


Alan G4ZFQ
 

On 01/09/2021 02:36, Mont Pierce KM6WT wrote:

I got the Clock running great now with the QLG2-SE.  Sent the following command:
$PGKC115,1,0,0,0*2B
That's some progress!
NaviTrack has that command built in but most of the other commands need it to be used like a terminal program.
It's far from being a good program but it does show Glonass and Beidou.
On my setups I am asked when I start the program which, I suppose, is the same as running as Administrator.
I have seen no way of saving settings. I do not think a supercap will help, it loses baud rate settings if it is powered on and another seemingly unrelated command is sent.

73 Alan G4ZFQ


Mont Pierce KM6WT
 

On Tue, Aug 31, 2021 at 11:57 PM, Alan G4ZFQ wrote:
NaviTrack has that command built in but most of the other commands need it to be used like a terminal program.
It's a little easier than a terminal program.
The text entry box has the command prefix, you add the cmd#,parm1,parm2...  and hit send.
It calculates the checksum for you as it sends it out the serial port.




Before I got NaviTrack running, I created a few dos .txt files with commands and checksums.  Then I just copy a .txt file to the com port from the dos command prompt to send it.  This is actually a bit easier as I don't have to remember the command #s and what parameters to use... 

To calculate the checksum, I used the NMEA Checksum Calculator webpage (click here).


On my setups I am asked when I start the program which, I suppose, is the same as running as Administrator.
That's cool...   Mine does not prompt...  not sure why.  


I have seen no way of saving settings. I do not think a supercap will help, it loses baud rate settings if it is powered on and another seemingly unrelated command is sent.
Yes.  When I send command 115 to select GPS satellites only, it resets the baud rate back to 9600.  It's probably doing some kind of internal reset to clear out unselected satellite tracking data.


Thanks,
km6wt


Luciano Gasparini PT9KK
 

I tried customizing the QLG2-SE in such a way to have both GPS and Galileo running, at the same time, according to the explanation presented on aforementioned subject but, unfortunately NaviTrack won't work at all. It does recognize the COM port, I set it to 9600 but no response whatsoever. No action, nada, niente, nulo...

What kind of interface are you guys running from the QLG2-SE and the USB, please? Any hints?
I'm running Win10.

73,

Luciano Gasparini PT9KK


Alan G4ZFQ
 

On 18/10/2021 19:14, Luciano Gasparini PT9KK wrote:
I tried customizing the QLG2-SE in such a way to have both GPS and Galileo running, at the same time, according to the explanation presented on aforementioned subject but, unfortunately NaviTrack won't work at all. It does recognize the COM port, I set it to 9600 but no response whatsoever. No action, nada, niente, nulo...
What kind of interface are you guys running from the QLG2-SE and the USB, please? Any hints?
I'm running Win10.
Luciano

NaviTrack works on 3 Windows 10 computers here. Do you "Run as Administrator"?

I have not seen any instructions to get my QLG2 to work with Galileo. I tried the command but it did not respond.

73 Alan G4ZFQ


Luciano Gasparini PT9KK
 

Alan et al,

NaviTrack works under W10 and I run it as Admin. The problem being no data sent by the QLG2-SE is shown on the NaviTrack.
I also tried sending the proper command to the QLG2-SE to work with Galileo and GPS, but get no response whatsoever. It seems that I might be using the wrong interface. What do you use in between the QLG2-SE and your Win10 USB port, please?

73,

Luciano Gasparini PT9KK


Alan G4ZFQ
 

Luciano,

NaviTrack works under W10 and I run it as Admin. The problem being no data sent by the QLG2-SE is shown on the NaviTrack.
I use this kind of interface on all my GPS modules.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/112791363697?hash=item1a42e3a071:g:KTAAAOSw2VFa2Uz9

Cross connect TX/RX between the GPS and UART.
Connect ground
3.3 or 5 volts to GPS.

The is shown in Device Manager and is selected in NaviTrack.

My QLG2s will only work with GPS and BeiDOU or Glonass.
Commanding it for Galileo has no effect.

73 Alan G4ZFQ


Luciano Gasparini PT9KK
 

Alan,

Thank you for your reply. I just bought the interface mentioned on your previous email. Hopefully it will work better than those I bought with a fake Prolific chip.

I'll try the GPS+Glonass combination once the new interface arrives and will let y'all know. I will also try the Galileo.

Last but not least, I noticed the the QLG2-SE wakes up faster than the QLG1 and apparently, signals are stronger than those of QLG1.

Until then, thank you so much and 73,

Luciano Gasparini PT9KK