Portsdown 4 Major Update

Discussion about this major DATV Project. See https://wiki.batc.org.uk/The_Portsdown_Transmitter
G8GKQ
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Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by G8GKQ » Sun Apr 28, 2024 3:21 pm

I have just released a major update (202404271) to the Portsdown 4. The update covers 2 major feature areas, the use of the Pluto SDR and HDMI display functionality.
  • A second version of the Noise Figure Meter has been added that uses the Pluto SDR, rather than the LimeSDR. Thus both Pluto and LimeSDR users can measure receiver and preamp noise figure if they build the Noise Source PSU and have a suitable noise source. Full details here: https://wiki.batc.org.uk/Portsdown_NF_Meter
  • A second version of the Noise Meter has been added that uses the Pluto SDR, rather than the LimeSDR. Thus both Pluto and LimeSDR users can measure sun noise (for ISS HamTv dish alignment and testing) and use the other Noise Meter functions . Full details here: https://wiki.batc.org.uk/Portsdown_Noise_Meter
  • The Test equipment menu has been rearranged to accomodate these functions and most of the test equipment apps return to the test equipment menu after use, rather than Menu 1.
  • It is possible to set the Portsdown to boot directly to the test equipment menu (Menu 3, System Config, Start-up App); options are also available to boot directly to transmit or receive.
  • As an experimental capability, the Ryde receiver software can be loaded alongside the the Portsdown sofwtare. Install it from Menu 2, File Menu, and then run it directly from Menu 2. For best results an IR remote control or QuickTune should be used to control the receiver. It is also possible to boot directly to the Ryde receiver. More details here https://wiki.batc.org.uk/Using_the_Ryde ... _Portsdown
  • Contest numbers and Test Cards (rather than the buttons) are now displayed on the web view when transmit is selected as requested by PA3AOD.
Please provide feedback (positive or negative) on the new features here.

Dave, G8GKQ

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g6hfs
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by g6hfs » Mon Apr 29, 2024 6:17 am

Hi Dave,

Like the new boot into mode, and the Ryde install is good for me as the portsdown is normally on 24/7

Brian

PA3AOD
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by PA3AOD » Mon Apr 29, 2024 12:10 pm

Hi Dave,

Thanks for displaying the contest nr. / testcard in de update it works as expected, great.

73,
Bert PA3AOD

g4saq
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by g4saq » Tue Apr 30, 2024 9:14 am

Dave - very many thanks for producing a Pluto version of the NF meter. (I was hoping it might emerge from your shack at some point!) I'm away at the moment but I will report back once I have been able to try it.
73, Russ.

g8lce
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by g8lce » Sun May 05, 2024 10:57 am

I have two Portsdown 4s and a Minitiouner and Picotuner. One of the Portsdown 4s hangs when receiving from the Minitiouner after several seconds when there is no signal but seems OK when there is a signal. When connected to a Picotuner it works OK. When I cross the two over both Portsdown 4s work OK. I have checked the memory size etc. and both Portsdowns are 4Gb and latest software. The working Portsdown is actually running hotter than the problem one (different case). So something is wrong somewhere! I have run these for long periods but the fault condition is always when the Portsdown and Minitiouner combination is just one of the Portsdowns.
I will try a third Portsdown 4 to see if that will show any difference....

Martin G8LCE

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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by G8GKQ » Tue May 14, 2024 5:59 pm

Martin

I would suspect some sort of USB connectivity issue. Try swapping the cables beteween the 2 systems and see if the problems moves.

I fthat does not locate it, try swapping SD Cards and see if the problem moves.

Dave, G8GKQ

g8lce
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by g8lce » Wed May 15, 2024 8:03 am

Tried a few things Dave. USB cables are definitely some of the problem. It is just one of my Portsdowns and I just wanted to see if it happened with anyone elses. It is different between Minitiouner and Picotuner too but so is the USB cables. I have changed the SD card. I am still investigating as it may be something else I am doing differently. One thing I could try is to go back a few versions of the Portsdown 4 software and see if that makes a difference ( just to stop that niggling thought ). Have you got a link?
I am not too worried at about the problem at the moment but I would like to find the reason ( head banging engineering ).
Looking forward to networked Picotuner to remove USB wires! Would this allow two Rydes/Portsdown4s to look at seperate channels of a Picotuner?

Martin G8LCE

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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by g8lce » Sat May 18, 2024 8:04 am

At last I have found the problem!. It is the update. I tried all the bits (except the screen) when I decided to check the firmware version of the Portsdown that worked all the time when receiving.
53728270488_0aa325eb64_c.jpg
53728270488_0aa325eb64_c.jpg (53.34 KiB) Viewed 521 times
The new firmware was the problem.

Martin G8LCE

G8GKQ
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by G8GKQ » Sat May 18, 2024 2:13 pm

OK Martin

I suspect that the update did not download properly on the up-to-date Portsdown. Can I suggest that you force an update on that Portsdown and see if it cures the problem.

Nothing at all has been changed on the receiver between those 2 update states. This is the version history:

Code: Select all

202405080
Experimental mouse control with HDMI Display

202405070
Correct Meteorview server setting

202404270
Add Pluto Version of Noise Meter
Dave

g8lce
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Re: Portsdown 4 Major Update

Post by g8lce » Sat May 18, 2024 3:48 pm

Hi Dave,
It is the software and it mainly does it on the Picotuner. See there is a new DEV update. Tried both these and the same outcome when using the Picotuner, and two different Portsdown 4.
Changed everything and tried updates. The old software 202404271 seems to work come what may. How do I load that software again to check on the Portsdown 4s that have been updated?

Martin G8LCE

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