wsjt-x ft8

WSJT-X FT8 and the Icom 7300 the Easy Way!

In FT-8, Icom 7300, Software by K0PIR54 Comments

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Are you looking for an easy way to try out the new WSJT-X FT8 mode? If you have the Icom 7300 I assure you this cannot get any easier or better. There’s no need for an external sound card (Signalink) or any other hardware. The Icom 7300 suffices. The only thing needed is a USB cable (install the driver from Icom before connecting a USB cable) and WSJT-X.

“WSJT-X implements communication protocols or “modes” called FT8, JT4, JT9, JT65, QRA64, ISCAT, MSK144, and WSPR, as well as one called Echo for detecting and measuring your own radio signals reflected from the Moon.Β  These modes were all designed for making reliable, confirmed QSOs under extreme weak-signal conditions.” – WSJT Home Page

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Stand Alone Preferred by Many

Over the past few weeks I have run across Hams who have been using WSJT-X just like this. No integration with any other programs. There is really no need for JTAlert, QSO Relay or any logbook. This is the preferred way to operate for many Hams.

Super Simple Installation

I’ll put the download link below. This is a safe, small and easy program to get running on your computer. Windows, Linux and Macintosh are supported. Go to the link below, click on it and download the file to your computer. From there it will vary, depending on computer OS, but in Windows just double-click the downloaded file and go through the installation prompts. It is super simple!

Important: Use something for time sync. I use NetTime.

Configuration/Settings

In WSJT-X there are just a few configuration settings to get the Icom 7300 on the air with FT8.

  • In the software, under File and Settings, on the General Tab enter your callsign and grid square.
  • On the Radio tab select the Icom 7300 for the Rig. You’ll need to know your COM port number.
  • On the Audio tab tell WSJT-X what your Soundcard Input and Output are. It’s going to be the Icom 7300 USB Audio CODEC for both.

The rest is in the video. There are just a few more things to look at and you’ll be on the air.

Icom 7300 Internal Settings

If you haven’t already done so, you can have a look at them here:Β Icom 7300 Easy Transmitter Settings For Digital Operation.

Here are screen shots from my Icom 7300.

WSJT-X The Easy Way!

In this video I cover the download locations for WSJT-X, how to run it and using the built in logging capability. Also included, additional settings, making a contact and finally importing WSJT-X log into HRD logbook.

Once you get it installed I have a few more videos on the Icom 7300 to improve reception, transmit and make the WSJT-X Wide Graph (waterfall) look its best. See below.

Thank you for stopping by and visiting my website. There will be more to come on the IC-7300 and IC-7610.

Have you been on FT8? What do you think about it?

73’s,

Rich, K0PIR

Sources andΒ Reference

WSJT-X download

Using the Wide Graph

Icom 7300 Receiver Settings For Digital

Icom 7300 Easy Transmitter Settings For Digital

Icom 7300 settings that work:

Connectors

DATA OFF MOD = MIC,ACC

DATA MOD = USB

USB Serial Function = CI-V

CI-V

CI-V BAUD Rate = AUTO

CI-V Address = 94h

CI-V Transceive = ON

CI-V USB PORT =Β  UNLINK From REMOTE

CI-V USB BAUD Rate = 115200

CI-V USB Echo Back = ON

 

 

Comments

  1. Hi there not got a 7300 got its little brother the 7100 I have the Cat connection, the TX can be operated from the pc, the meter on the bottom left. The Waterfall is showing signals. But nothing displayed on the Text screen.
    Help

    1. Author

      Hi there and thank you for commenting.

      Do you have a something to sync the computer clock to the Internet? I use NetTime.

      Possibly it is just not decoding because of that.

      Rich, K0PIR

  2. Hi Rich
    I have the same setup as yourself. When i look at the audio-scope the received signal for ft8 looks flat topped , when the 7300 goes in to transmit my signal looks more of a sine-wave. I can receive ok plenty on the screen, i do not seem to make many contacts. my antenna is a ZS6BKW Multi-band Antenna at 40 ft looking out to the English channel . power is 50 watts on ft8 all settings on the radio seem to be as per the video. ft8 radio settings are USB in mode if i use data/pkt signal output seems lower Split operation is RIG .

    Best 73`s

    Paul G1ZPJ

    1. Author

      Hi Paul,

      Nice to hear from you and thank you for posting your comment.

      Maybe change the “LEVEL” when using the Audio Scope on the radio and see if that is not it.

      Are you in USB-D mode when transmitting? I had to watch mine when using the rig for spilt (IC-7300) because it was a little quirky. I eventually settled on “Fake It” for split and yes, Data/Pkt should put the radio in USB-D mode.

      Are you using something for the clock in the PC? I use NetTime: http://www.timesynctool.com

      Rich, K0PIR

  3. Thanks. Got WJST running quickly. The 7300 is so easy to use. I dumped a FTDX 5000 that required a separate device to run digital modes. The 5000 limited bandwidth in data modes to 2400hz which was irritating for FT8.

    Thanks for the help.

    Brad
    N6GR

  4. Rich,

    FYI the problems with my computer not working was my wifi dongle . I replaced the wifi dongle and everything is working great.

    Thanks for all your help
    W2GC Frank Sanocki

    1. Author

      Hi Frank,

      Great to hear! That’s an odd one πŸ™‚

      Thanks for the comment and best 73,

      Rich, K0PIR

  5. Greetings Rich!
    Thanks to you I have been operating WSJT_X for several months. But suddenly this morning my USB audio codec drivers have disappeared!
    I am using a 7300 and HRD for rig control and logging.
    Where can I find the proper drivers to reinstall?
    Thanks,
    Steve
    KK6NTL

    1. Author

      Hi Steve,

      Nice to hear from you and thank you for the nice comment. I really do appreciate it.

      It’s unusual they disappeared. I would try powering everything down, reseating the USB cable at the computer and the radio and then power everything back up.

      If you need to you can install the latest driver here. It’s from Icom.

      Thank you again, 73.

      Rich, K0PIR

  6. Yes I am in USB- D mode. I have made no changes to the radio from one computer to the next. I reinstalled the Silicon Labs driver and checked the codex driver both are to the latest revision. I know the radio works fine and I know the WSJT program works fine. My computer is a refurbished model. It seems to me it has to be the computer some how. Maybe I will get a new computer.

    Thanks
    Frank

    1. Author

      Hi Frank,

      That is unfortunate, but as you say everything works on your laptop it’s just when you move to the computer that it fails. I would try another USB port on the computer if you haven’t.

      I buy used computers and then eventually upgrade the hard drives to solid state. They are amazing and fast. Less expensive for me that way.

      I hope you get it resolved. Thank you for letting us know and best 73!

      Rich, K0PIR

  7. Rich
    I went to the device manager and it shows my sound card is working properly and it also has the latest driver.

    Frank W2GC

  8. I am using Net Time on both computers and if i check time .is it shows my time is exact. Is it possible I have a defective sound card? It seems that even though I am transmitting no one can see my transmission. I do not know if I am transmitting any data

    Thanks for your help
    Frank W2GC

    1. Author

      The soundcard is really the Icom 7300. You are using the USB Audio CODEC for Soundcard input and output in WSJT-X? Are you decoding signals okay?

      Rich, K0PIR

  9. I am using the silicon labs cp210 usb to uart bridge. I have a laptop and everything works perfect. I have a tower and both computers have win 10 installed. On the tower i receive signals I cannot contact anbody and i receive no responses to my CQ. Playback/record are set to CODEX. I am putting out a decent amount of power so I don’t think that is the problem. Everything seems to be set right and WSJT appears to be working fine just no response. I have made no changes to the radio settings.

    Thanks for your time and expertise
    Frank W2GC

  10. Rich>

    I have ft8 working fine on one computer but not my other computer. There are no changes to the ICOM 7300 and I am using codex for both input/output on both computers. Do you have any ideas how this can happen?

    Thanks
    Frank W2GC

    1. Author

      Hi Frank,

      Nice to hear from you.

      Is the same Icom driver loaded on both computers?

      What problem do you have with the one?

      Rich, K0PIR

  11. Great instructions, finally allowed me to start working FT8.

    Only one issue, when I start Log4OM, it activates the transmit. If I revert to a saved load on the 7300, it works fine, switch back to my digital load on the 7300, and it keys down. What setting do I need to look at?

    73,
    Tommy K4XB

    1. Author

      Hi Tommy,

      Nice to hear from you and thank you for commenting.

      Please check the RTS setting in OmniRig. RTS can be set to LOW.

      If that does not work for you. In the radio got to Menu>Set>Connectors and change USB SEND to OFF.

      I would try changing the software RTS first. That should work for you.

      Thank you and best 73,

      Rich, K0PIR

  12. Thanks for all your help–it is working perfectly now.
    You do a fantastic job.

    Ben

    1. Author

      Hey Ben, glad you got it. It’s a fun rig and a fun mode. I hope to hear you on the air.

      73,
      Rich, K0PIR

  13. Thanks, we are getting there. Will these audio setting affect RTTY or do I need to move them up?

    1. Author

      Hi Ben,

      It won’t affect RTTY FSK, just AFSK if you’re using it. Even so it would be okay I would think.

  14. I followed your video to setup my 7300 for WSJT-X. I finally got it to work. I seem to be getting a lot of noise in my waterfall and some of the signals are way to wide, ie from 1000 to 1400. What setting do I need to change in the radio. Thanks for any help-your videos are great.

    Ben
    WA4BCS

    1. Author

      Hi Ben,

      It’s nice to hear from you and thank you for the question.

      If you see some unusually wide signals, check your frequency. Maybe you are not on the correct frequency for the mode you are operating on. For instance, FT8 on 20 Meters is 14.074. JT65 on 20 is 14.076.

      Let me know. If that’s not it maybe this video will help: https://youtu.be/7g1syFRHsu8
      Also: https://youtu.be/4dP55uH7ewk

      On a side note: I am using “Fake it” for split operation in WSJT-X. It is trouble free. Also use Data/Pkt for Mode in WSJT-X. That will set the radio to the correct mode which is USB-D automatically for you.

      Rich, K0PIR

      1. No help, I have all the settings you suggested already. I GUESS I need to redo all the internal settings in the radio. It seems like too much audio is going to the computer.

        1. Author

          Hi Ben,

          What does the green bar on the left hand side in WSJT-X look like? It should be green and maxing between 50 – 70dB.

          There’s only one thing in the radio to adjust for AF Output to your computer and software. that is the ACC/USB AF Output Level. Mine is at 30% now.

          In the computer for the Recording devices, select the USB Audio CODEC and you can adjust the level from there. Mine is at 15. Yours could vary somewhat, but should be around those.

          Getting the waterfall (Wide Graph) in WSJT-X setup can be tricky too. Those sliders are touchy.

          Rich, K0PIR

          P.S. Here is an excellent reference guide: http://www.g4ifb.com/FT8_Hinson_tips_for_HF_DXers.pdf

    1. Author

      Hi Mietek,

      Nice to hear from you and thank you for the comment.

      Best DX and 73,
      Rich, K0PIR

  15. Thanks for posting the screen shots of the IC-7300 data mode settings. I’d spent a few hours going back and forth between the IC-7300 and my laptop (running WSJT-X on Ubuntu Linux 16.04) trying to figure out why I could receive just fine but transmit was a no-go, I’d convinced myself It was a laptop setting, thanks to your screen shots it turned out that I’d missed a simple setting on the IC-7300. Very grateful, thanks!

    Jason VE6JPR

    1. Author

      Hi Jason,

      Good to hear form you and I’m glad it was of some help. Thanks for leaving the comment.

      I haven’t tried it with Ubuntu, but I’ll bet it works good. The Raspberry Pi is a blast.

      73 and good DX!

      Rich, K0PIR

  16. Thanks Rich…that did it! Hopefully this weekend I’ll get to play with it to see if I can actually get it rolling!

    73 de Dan
    WA2BTR

  17. Hi Rich,

    Dan here…WA2BTR. I just got the Icom 7300 for Christmas so thank you for the excellent videos. You might have covered this, but when I plug the USB cable in I lose the computer audio. I am trying to follow along with your videos but can’t since the audio goes when I am connected! It’s probably a simple setting I am missing, but any help would be greatly appreciated! I do see the waterfall display on my computer screen by the way using N1MM Logger, but that’s as far as I have gotten.

    Thanks and 73,
    Dan
    WA2BTR

    1. Author

      Hi Dan,

      When I was using Windows 7 and my Signalink USB I had the same problem.

      Now I’m using Windows 10 and of course the 7300 or the 7610 and it works great.

      In the computer for the Playback devices I have the computer speakers set as the default. Then of course in the Ham software, I am using the USB Audio CODEC for soundcard in and out.

      See if setting your computer speakers as the default Playback device works.

      Rich, K0PIR

  18. Hi Rich
    no i wasn’t using netime i have downloaded it and everything seems to be running ok now
    Thanks for your help and i enjoy the videos keep up the good work
    73 Alan m0wad

  19. Hi Rich
    i was running ft8 with the ic7300 everything was ok then for some reason it has stopped showing anything in the band activity part so uninstalled ft8 +jt alert and re installed them but still the same hope you can help
    Thank you 73
    Alan m0wad

    1. Author

      Hi Alan,

      It’s nice to hear from you and thank you for commenting.

      Are you still seeing the waterfall and signals coming through? Verify you are on the correct freq. and mode. The radio is in USB-D mode too.

      It could be the time. Are you using something like Netime to sync your computer clock.

      See: http://www.timesynctool.com

      Rich, K0PIR

  20. When installing the driver, should I select bit version that matches the installed OS?

    1. Author

      Hi John,

      It’s nice to hear from you and that’s a great question because even some of our programs are 32bit when we have a 64bit OS.

      Yes choose the one that fits your system. I have a 64bit. In the Windows File Explorer if I right click on This PC and select Properties, it shows the system information.

      Thank you and best 73,
      Rich, K0PIR

  21. Hi Rich, tnx for the various informative videos on the 7300 and the one on FT8 and WSJT-X in particular. Triggered an interest in digital modes and got things quickly working without going through massive documentation. Which I’m now doing anyway one I’m really nterested πŸ™‚

    Happy New Year and best 73!

    Paul PA2PWM

    1. Author

      Hi Paul,

      It’s nice to hear from you and thank you for the nice comment. I am happy this helped.

      Thank you and HNY!

      Rich, K0PIR

  22. Very good
    Fixing to down load today and see what
    Happens. 1st attempt no audio. I’ll delete
    And start afresh.
    73 and all the best
    πŸŽ„πŸŽ„πŸŽ„πŸŽ„πŸŽ„πŸŽ„πŸŽ„
    Jon
    NQ4A

  23. Thanks Rich. You ended several days of frustration trying to get my IC-7300 to transmit using PSK 31 and HRD. One stinking little setting was wrong in the 7300. Thanks for your efforts with the very informative videos.
    I was just ready to start setting up for FT8 when your latest video came out. Perfect timing.

    Have a merry Christmas and a happy and healthy new year.

    1. Rich,
      I so much enjoy the videos and learn a great deal when watching them.
      Re the Icom 7300 and the running of WSJTX software, I too have the problem with the
      with the “USB-D” jumping back to “USB” after transmission. The packet setting does not seem to make
      any change in correcting the fault for me.
      It faked me out for a while not transmitting and then I remembered your comment of the USB-DATA comment.
      Switching back manually sets it to one transmit then it goes and then back to usb.
      HELP !
      73
      Happy New Year to you young man.
      Jon
      NQ4A
      Richmond, VA

      1. Author

        Hi Jon,

        Just listening to your voice mail πŸ™‚ Long day here and -25f in Aberdeen, SD!

        I was using Rig for Split Operation and this can cause problems for some, as well as myself, so I am using “Fake it” for Split Operation. This works best.
        See if that does it for you Jon.

        File>Settings>Radio tab. Look underneath Split Operation and you’ll see “Fake it”. Use that.

        Nice to hear from you! See if that does it for you, let me know. HNY!

        Rich, K0PIR

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