Connecting and configuring the Elecraft K3 for PSK, RTTY, CW, and Phone operation

Connections

  1. an audio cable from the K3's Line Out jack to the sound card's Line In jack (an external isolation transformer is not necessary, as it's built in to the K3)

  2. an audio cable from the soundcard's Line Out jack to the K3's Line In jack (an external isolation transformer is not necessary, as it's built in to the K3)

  3. a PTT connection, which can use any one of three possibilities (see Note 1 below):

    1. PTT via the Xcvr Ctrl SW option on the PTT tab of WinWarbler's Configuration window, with Commander configured to accomplish RX-TX switching by asserting the RTS or DTR hardware signal line on its primary CAT serial port without an interface circuit. and with PTT via CAT disabled (See Note 2 below for configuration instructions)

    2. PTT via the Xcvr Ctrl SW option on the PTT tab of WinWarbler's Configuration window, with Commander configured to accomplish RX-TX switching by sending CAT commands, or

    3. PTT via the RTS or DTR option on the PTT tab of WinWarbler's Configuration window, which enables WinWarbler to accomplish RX-TX switching by asserting RTS or DTR on a separate serial port through an external interface (note that WinWarbler cannot use the same serial port as is being used by Commander for CAT control)

  4. WinWarbler can transmit CW via the K3 without any external CW interface; on the CW tab of WinWarbler's Config window, set the Keying Mode panel to Xcvr Ctrl SW.

    • If this method is used, the Esc key cannot be used to interrupt a macro message in progress

    • Alternatively, an external CW interface can be used. WinWarbler does not support hardware CW keying directly via the DTR or RTS line on the K3's serial port as described in the K3 Owner's Manual.

  5. a FSK connection (if FSK RTTY operation is desired)

PSK Configuration

For PSK with WinWarbler, the K3 should be in DATA mode, DATA A submode. In WinWarbler's Configuration window, under the PSK tab, I have the Receiver modulation and Transmitter modulation panels set to BPSK USB, and the transceiver mode panel set to Data-U. The optimal offset is set to 1500, which is where the K3's filters are centred in DATA A submode. The default TxPwr should be set to 50 watts or less in PSK mode to avoid IMD due to clipping on peaks.

AFSK RTTY Configuration

For AFSK RTTY, the K3 should be in DATA mode, AFSK A submode. In WinWarbler's Configuration window, under the RTTY tab, set the Modulation and transceiver mode panel to AFSK LSB, the Xcvr mode to RTTY, the Mark offset to -2125, and the Optimal Offset to 2210 (that's with the K3's Pitch control set to 2125 in AFSK A; for other pitch settings, set the Mark offset to the negative of the pitch and the Optimal Offset to pitch+85). On the General tab of Commander's Configuration window, set the RTTY sub-mode to AFSK. In contrast to PSK, there is no need to restrict the K3's power output in RTTY.

FSK RTTY Configuration

For FSK RTTY, the K3 should be in DATA mode, FSK D submode. In WinWarbler's Configuration window, under the RTTY tab, set the Modulation and transceiver mode panel to FSK LSB, the Xcvr Mode to RTTY, the Mark offset to -2125, the Optimal Offset to 2210 (as described above for AFSK RTTY), and the FSK Control to the serial port you are using for FSK keying. On the General tab of Commander's Configuration window, set the RTTY sub-mode to FSK. With the K3's DATA submode set to FSK D, you may need to ensure that the K3's FSK speed is set correctly (45 bps is the normal setting for amateur RTTY). In contrast to PSK, there is no need to restrict the K3's power output in RTTY.

Notes

  1. Do not use both CAT control and RTS/DTR PTT connection methods in parallel. Some K3 owners who have done this have reported that their radio sometimes refuses to switch from TX to RX when both methods are used simultaneously, leaving it hung up in transmit. A single PTT mechanism is sufficient and avoids this possible race condition.

  2. To use PTT via RTS (or DTR) on the K3's serial port,

    1. On the General tab of Commander's Configuration window, check the Suppress CAT box

    2. On the Ports tab of Commander's Configuration window, set RTS to TX

    3. On the PTT tab of WinWarbler's Configuration window, set the Port to Xcvr Ctrl App

    4. Set the K3's CONFIG:PTT-KEY menu item to RTS-OFF

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K3PSKRTTY (last edited 2013-03-28 15:10:23 by localhost)