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FT-950 with SDR panadapter

Our buffer interface named IFace can be used to add an SDR panadapter to the great Yaesu FT-950.

The operations to be carried out are very simple, it is sufficient to obtain from its wiring diagram the information on the points where the IF signal has to be taken. This radio uses several mixers, we are interested in the first of the reception chain as it gives us a broadband signal. The IF frequency is 69.450 MHz. The following image shows the block diagram of the radio and where to get the IF signal.

The following images show the portions of the schematic diagram of the MAIN UNIT where we can see the exact points where to sample the IF signal and the power supply.

We now proceed to identify the exact points on the printed circuit board where to take the IF signal to be sent to the IFace. The following images show the sampling point for the IF signal and for the power supply for the buffer interface.

The use of PTT signal is not required, RX and TX signals are separated.

In order to purchase an IFace use the buttons below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information, do not hesitate to write to us using the form below.
Have fun!

SDR interface for the IC-706MKIIG

These are the instructions to install the IFace interface inside of the Icom IC-706MKIIG. The installation is very easy.

The IC-706MKIIG, like other radios, has a fairly complex configuration and uses two different intermediate frequencies. We are interested in the first, the “wideband” one, the one before the main bandpass filter (the roofing filter so to speak). The sequence of operations to be performed in order to obtain a sufficient bandwidth to realize a panoramic receiver around the chosen IF frequency is shown below. The intermediate frequency filter is also used in transmission, so it will be preferable to use the PTT command to disable the IFace during transmission. The following images show the point where the IF signal will be taken.

Let’s start by analyzing the wiring diagram. We have to find the first mixer, the PTT and where to take the power supply. From the following images everything will appear clear.

PTT and power supply can be easily taken from the connector J10. The interesting signal are labeled as T8 and 13.8 respectively.

At this point we have to locate the points where we connect the electric cables to the IFace. The following images show where to take the various signals.

If you like the idea and the goodness of the proposal buy an IFace using the button below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information do not hesitate to write us.
Have fun!

IC-7400 with SDR panadapter

Our buffer interface named IFace can be used to add an SDR panadapter to the glorious Kenwood TS-850s.

The operations to be carried out are very simple, it is sufficient to obtain from its wiring diagram the information on the points where the IF signal has to be taken. This radio uses several mixers, we are interested in the first of the reception chain as it gives us a broadband signal. The IF frequency is 73.05 MHz. The following images show the block diagram of the radio and where to get the IF signal.

The following images show the portions of the schematic diagram of the RF UNIT where we can see the exact points where to sample the IF signal and the power supply.

We now proceed to identify the exact points on the printed circuit board where to take the IF signal to be sent to the IFace. The following images show the sampling point for the IF signal and for the power supply for the buffer interface.

The use of PTT signal is not required, RX and TX signals are separated.

In order to purchase an IFace use the buttons below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information, do not hesitate to write to us using the form below.
Have fun!

IC-7400 with SDR panadapter

Our buffer interface named IFace can be used to add an SDR panadapter to the glorious ICOM IC-7400.

The operations to be carried out are very simple, it is sufficient to obtain from its wiring diagram the information on the points where the IF signal has to be taken. This radio uses several mixers, we are interested in the first of the reception chain as it gives us a broadband signal. The IF frequency is 64.455 MHz. The following image shows the block diagram of the radio and where to get the IF signal.

The following images show the portions of the schematic diagram of the RF UNIT where we can see the exact points where to sample the IF signal and the power supply.

We now proceed to identify the exact points on the printed circuit board where to take the IF signal to be sent to the IFace. The following images show the sampling point for the IF signal and for the power supply for the buffer interface.

The use of PTT signal is not required, RX and TX signals are separated.

In order to purchase an IFace use the buttons below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information, do not hesitate to write to us using the form below.
Have fun!

NRD-535 with SDR panadapter

Our buffer interface named IFace can be used to add an SDR panadapter to the glorious JRC NRD-535.

The operations to be performed are very simple, it is sufficient to obtain from its wiring diagram the information on the points where to take the IF signals.

This radio uses different mixers. In particular, we will have to use the first one of the RX chain because we will have a wideband signal aroud the IF frequency (that is 70.455 MHz). The following images show the block diagram of the radio.

The following image shows the portions of the schematic diagram of the RF TUNE unit where we can see the exact points where to sample the IF signal and the power supply.

We now proceed to identify the exact points on the printed circuit board where to take the IF signal to be sent to the IFace. The following images show the sampling point for the IF signal and for the power supply for the buffer interface.

The use of PTT signal is not required, it’s a receiver!

In order to purchase an IFace use the buttons below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information, do not hesitate to write to us using the form below.
Have fun!

FT-2000 with SDR panadapter

Our buffer interface named IFace can be used to add an SDR panadapter to the glorious Yaesu FT-2000.

The operations to be carried out are very simple, it is sufficient to obtain from its wiring diagram the information on the points where the IF signal has to be taken. This radio uses several mixers, we are interested in the first of the reception chain as it gives us a broadband signal. The IF frequency is 69.450 MHz. The following image shows the block diagram of the radio and where to get the IF signal.

The following images show the portions of the schematic diagram of the MAIN UNIT where we can see the exact points where to sample the IF signal and the power supply.

We now proceed to identify the exact points on the printed circuit board where to take the IF signal to be sent to the IFace. The following images show the sampling point for the IF signal and for the power supply for the buffer interface.

The use of PTT signal is not required, RX and TX signals are separated.

In order to purchase an IFace use the buttons below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information, do not hesitate to write to us using the form below.
Have fun!

IC-R9000 with SDR panadapter

Our buffer interface named IFace can be used to add an SDR panadapter to the glorious Icom IC-R9000.

The operations to be performed are very simple, it is sufficient to obtain from its wiring diagram the information on the points where to take the IF signals.

This radio uses different mixers. In particular, we will have to use the second one of the RX chain because the IF frequency will be the same for all the bands, 10.7 MHz. The following images show the block diagram of the radio.

The following two images show the portions of the schematic diagram of the IF UNIT where we can see the exact points where to sample the IF signal and the power supply.

We now proceed to identify the exact points on the printed circuit board where to take the IF signal to be sent to the IFace. The following images show the sampling point for the IF signal and for the power supply for the buffer interface.

The use of PTT signal is not required, it’s a receiver!

In order to purchase an IFace use the buttons below.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects or whatever.

For more information, do not hesitate to write to us using the form below.
Have fun!

IFace 2 – IF tap/pat interface

Would you like to have a radio with a nice 40 “LCD display where you can view spectrograms, waterfalls and much more information? And what would you say to have a modern SDR radio so that you can listen to more signals at the same time? Wouldn’t it be nice to have many digital filters to improve reception during contest or DX activity?

If you answered yes then IFace 2 is the electronic card that allows you to have all of this without having to buy a new radio. How? By inserting it inside your “old” beloved RTX and using a cheap SDR receiver for computers (some suggestions here) such as an USB RTL-SDR dongles.

IFace works with all the radios: click here!

Don’t you think so? Please watch this video and then keep reading.

The idea behind this product is to continue to use the radio that we have purchased and which has already given us so much satisfaction. Surely we already have the CAT interface with which we control it from the LOG or from other programs and we also have the audio interface for the digital modes. But sometimes we realize that we would need a second receiver (for example to follow the +5 kHz or + 10 kHz of a DX station), band filters with steeper sides to eliminate a disturbance on an adjacent frequency or a notch because our radio does not have it or it is not automatic. All this can be a memory!

So suppose to send the intermediate frequency signal (IF) of our radio to a dedicated SDR receiver and to start a program such as HDSDR (or SDR #, SDR Console …). On the screen of our computer we would have the spectrum display around the IF of our radio and, not to be neglected, we could also demodulate what it is receiving. But we could do even more, we could also demoulate other signals that are above or below the frequency tuned by our RTX.
Not bad, right?
The image below shows a screenshot of HDSDR connected to an FT-450D via an RTL-SDR and the IFace.

Reception at the IF frequency of a FT-450D though the IFace and a RTL-SDR.

What needs to be done is very simple. Let’s start by identifying within our radio the point where to take the medium frequency signal. This is between the output of the first mixer and the subsequent bandpass filters as shown in the following image.

After connecting the IFace to the mixer output, we supply it with a voltage between 8 V and 15 V (from inside the radio) and connect it to an external SDR receiver. During the reception the difference is strong, listen here.

In order to not alter the operation of our receiver, we must pick up the signal without charging the mixer, i.e. without taking power. For this reason we have to insert a special card between this and the external receiver: we can not connect it directly. The IF signal pick up card, the IFace, creates a copy of the signal to be sent to the external SDR receiver. This is a wideband and no-tune buffer, i.e. no calibration is needed, it is installed and it is ready to work. The usefulness of this circuit is to allow the medium frequency signal to be replicated without increasing the load seen by the source (the mixer) and therefore without changing its performance.

Once the IF signal has been obtained, it is sufficient to connect the A / D converter (an RTL-SDR is already more than enough) to the USB port and start the software for the reception (ex HDSDR, SDR #, SDR Console etc) and our RTX will now be equipped with a nice panoramic receiver.

There are numerous advantages in picking up the IF signal and not the one coming directly from the antenna: one of these is surely the fact that the amplitude of the signal is controlled through the AGC circuitry of the reception stages. This helps to prevent saturation of the dynamics of RTL-SDR (which is not known to be the most extensive). The point where you take the IF signal is easy to find, just take the schematic diagram of your radio and look for the first mixer: at its output you will find the signal of interest. The image below shows the point where you have to connect the IFace interface in the case of a Kenwood TS-530s, a radio of a few decades ago, which can be easily updated with this interface.

The connection to the chosen point can be made with a thin coaxial cable (type RG178 or RG316) and will terminate at the “Input” pad of the IFace. If the connection is very short, a coaxial cable may not be necessary. The “Output” instead will be connected with another small coaxial cable to the input of the chosen SDR receiver. Obviously the buffer must be powered: it will not be difficult to find inside the radio a point where to draw a voltage of 9 Vdc or 12 Vdc. The following images show how easy it is to install the IFace into the TS-530s.

After making these simple wiring, you can connect your SDR receiver and start the reception software. The following image shows the SDR# screen during the reception with a Kenwood TS-530s (its intermediate frequency is 8.83 MHz) and an economical RTL-SDR.

Another IFace has been installed in a YAESU FT-450D. As you will see from the photos, the space occupied is very little and the time required to connect the 4 conductors (+13 V, Gnd, Ptt +, IF) is a few minutes. In this case the Ptt signal was used, that is the “TX” signal present in the IF-UNIT of the radio. All this clearly appears in the following images.

IFace Vs IFace 2: because the differences are important!

IFace

  • power supply: 8-15 Vdc, I <50 mA
  • bandwidth: > 700 MHz
  • input impedance: > 500 kOhm
  • output impedance: 50 Ohm
  • power-down input ( PTT)
  • dimensions: 38 x 48 mm, PCB 1.6 mm

IFace 2

  • power supply: 8-15 Vdc, I <50 mA
  • bandwidth: > 700 MHz
  • input impedance: > 1 MOhm
  • output impedance: 50 Ohm
  • power-down input ( PTT)
  • dimensions: 31 x 39 mm, PCB 0.8 mm

In case you do not want to display any signal during transmission it is possible to turn off, by sending it into power down, the buffer of the IFace through a special input pin (PTT) as shown in the following picture. To be more accurate, an active high PTT, i.e. the signal is at a voltage greater than 5 V when transmitting, otherwise 0 V, or an active low PTT, i.e. the signal is at 0 V when the radio is transmitting, otherwise it must be floating, can be used.

The following video shows how the card reacts to the pressure of the PTT, that is when the radio changes from reception to transmission: the red LED indicates that the card is in power-down because the radio is transmitting.

If you were still not convinced of the goodness of this interface look at this other video where you can see how the IFace works when added to an old Kenwood TS-530s.

Do you have any questions? Maybe we already have the answer you’re looking for.

Please read our Frequently Asked Questions – FAQ.

Isn’t it enough? We have some testimonials!

TS-2000 SDR + RTL-SDR by Alberto IK0ZTL

IC-7600 SDR + RSP1A by Alfredo EA5YJ†

FT-818 SDR by Alessio IU0LFQ

IC-7100 SDR + RSPduo by Pellegrino IU8JAD

IC-775DSP SDR by IV3XNF Luigi

HOW TO BUY IFACE 2

The price of IFace 2 is only € 42.90 including VAT + shipments costs for the “IFace + Cables” kit. If you also want the coaxial connectors, those for the power supply and those for the PTT buy the “IFace 2 + Connectors + Cables” kit.

There’s a third option, “IFace 2 + Connectors + SDR Panadapter”. This comprises a powerful 12 bit/sa 10 MHz panadapter that will bring your receiving experience to another level. And it is compatible with the RSP1 from SDRplay: you can use the software SDRuno.

In this page you can find the list of the instructions to install the IFace into your radio: it is continuoursly growing. For those radios that are not included yet, send a request so that it can be entered as soon as possible.

Content of the delivery “IFace + Cables”:

  • one IFace 2 board
  • a coaxial cable with both an SMA-f panel connector and an SMA-m connector in order to connect the IFace to the SDR receiver
  • four wires to connect the board to the PTT, IF and powering points on the radio (colors of the wires may be subject to change).

Content of the delivery “IFace 2 + Connectors + Cables”:

  • one IFace board
  • 1 SMA-m coaxial connector
  • a coaxial cable with both an SMA-f panel connector and an SMA-m connector in order to connect the IFace to the SDR receiver
  • four wires to connect the board to the PTT, IF and powering points on the radio (colors of the wires may be subject to change)
  • 2 U.FL connector for PCB mount
  • 2 pig-tail U.FL – SMA-f
  • 2.54 mm pitch connectors for power and PTT

Content of the delivery “IFace 2 + Connectors + Cables + SDR panadapter”:

  • one IFace board
  • 1 MSI.SDR panadapter (12 bit per sample, 10 MHz bandwidth, RSP1 compatible)
  • 1 SMA-m coaxial connector
  • a coaxial cable with both a SMA-f panel connector and a SMA-m connector in order to connect the IFace to the SDR receiver
  • four wire to connect the board to the PTT, IF and powering points on the radio (colors of the wires may be subject to change)
  • 2 U.FL connector for PCB mount
  • 2 pig-tail U.FL – SMA-f
  • 2.54 mm pitch connectors for power and PTT

Order now by clicking on the following buttons and have fun.

ATTENTION: Though installing the IFace 2 is not difficult, you do this at your own risk. TSP S.r.l. is not responsible for any damage, unwanted side-effects, or whatever.

Any question? Please use the following form.

CW Stick Paddle – FAQ

If you still have doubts about the validity of our CW Stick Paddle, read below the answers to the most frequent questions we have received so far.

Q. What is the difference between the “standard” version and the “Black & Gold Limited Edition” version?

A. The two keys are identical in terms of circuitry, that is, the difference is the finish, the first green, the second black, and the “touch” metallization, the first tin-plated, the second real gold-plated.

Q. Is it a resistive or capacitive key?

A. It is a resistive key, it works by exploiting the surface resistance of the skin. Extremely dry or hardened skins have a very high surface resistance and may not work well: in this case, moisturize it.

Q. How fast can you use it?

A. It depends on your skills, but in general, in the configuration sold, it works well at least up to 30 WPM or more. If you want to go much faster, above 40 WPM, you need to replace two resistors (currently 10 MOhm) with lower values.

D. Does it need for power?

R. No! The power supply is obtained directly from the “dash” and “dot” signals, there are no batteries that discharge.

Q. Does it work with all radios?

A. Yes, but it depends on the voltages on the “dot” and “dash” lines. In general, 5 V or voltages close to this value must be found on the wires and transmission must take place by grounding (GND) one of these lines.

For any other questions, use the form below. Thanks.

IFace – FAQ

If you still have doubts about the validity of our IFace (click here), read below the answers to the most frequent questions we have received so far.

Q. What are the differences between IFace and IFace 2?

A. IFace and IFace 2 are 100% compatible. IFace 2 is an optimized version of IFace and is smaller. IFace 2 replaces the first version (which will no longer be sold).

Q. Can I continue to use the RTX without an SDR receiver connected to the IFace?

A. Obviously yes, the IFace does not influence the functioning of the radio in the least, it only serves to take a copy of the IF signal so that it can be sent to the external SDR receiver.

Q. What bandwidth can I see with the panadapter?

R. It depends, but above all, it does not depend on the IFace. It depends on the external SDR receiver you are going to use. For example, a classic RTL-SDR without decimation can typically reach 1 MHz bandwidth. An RSP1 can reach 10 MHz. If decimation is used, as we recommend, the band typically displayed is around 200 kHz (however more than enough for most applications).

Q. Is PTT necessary?

R. It depends, not always. It depends on the type of radio, in particular how the reception circuit is made. For example, if it uses part of the transmitter circuits then the answer is yes, otherwise if they are clearly separated the answer is no.

Q. What do “PTT Active High” and “PTT Active Low” mean?

A. Digital signals, such as the PTT signal, can be active high or active low. In the case of “active high” the PTT signal goes from 0 V to a higher value, typically 5 V or more. In the case of “active low,” the PTT signal goes from 5 or more volts to 0 V. Generally inside the radios the signal is “active high”. The “active low” signal is typical of an open-collector or open-drain transistor configuration.

Q. My radio does not have the CAT interface: at what frequency should the external SDR receiver be tuned?

A. In this case, if you do not use synchronization between computer and radio via CAT interface, the frequency to be used to receive correctly through the SDR panadapter is that of the IF to which the IFace is connected. Refer to the specific documentation for the installation of our interface.

Q. Can I use the CAT cable to change the frequency regardless of the VFO knob on the RTX or the software and have the same frequency value on both the SDR software and the radio?

A. Obviously yes, that’s what we recommend doing. If you use CAT to synchronize the radio and the SDR software, you will have full control of it directly from the computer screen.

Q. What kind of SDR do you provide in the bundle?

A. The SDR receiver that we have decided to provide in the bundle is what seems to us to be the best compromise in terms of cost, performance, ease of use, and the number of radios with which it can be combined. It is a clone of SDRplay’s RSP1. For more information read this article.

Q. Where do I connect the coaxial cable braid to the IFace?

A. It can be connected to one of the holes on the PCB or, if coaxial connectors are not used, to one of the pads where the external part of the connector should be welded.

Q. I have an RTX that already has an IF output. If I connect my SDR there, would I get the same performance as if I used the IFace?

A. No. Generally, with IFace, the performances are better because we can connect it directly after the first IF mixer and before the roofing filter. This results in a band displayed on the screen that is much wider than that displayed on the radio’s IF output.

Q. What do you need besides your IFace card to have a complete panadapter?

A. In general, you need an A / D converter for RF signals, also called an SDR receiver (ex. RTL-SDR or SDRplay) and a special program for the computer (HDSDR, SDR Console, SDR #, SDRuno etc.). That’s it.

More questions? Please use the following form.