Monday, 2 September 2013
Worked G7RNX/P tonight while he was on Snaefell (SOTA GD/GD-001), on 70MHz FM. I was using my Wouxun handheld and Garex flexi whip antenna near the sea shore on Walney.
Had a problem with the sound on my old laptop (Samsung N150 netbook) yesterday, I was setting it up to use with the FT-817 and instead of a proper data cable, I thought I'd keep it simple by using VOX through a 3.5mm jack - RJ45 cable (with some resistors to drop the level). That worked OK, once the loudspeaker volume was set to the right level (around 20%).
For receive I used a 3.5mm cable from the 817's headphone socket to the laptop's mic socket. I got the level right but then after a few seconds the meter dropped right down on the laptop. I thought there must be a bad connection somewhere. But monitoring the input through the laptop's speaker proved the signal was getting from the radio into the computer without any breaks.
If I unplugged the cable from the laptop and plugged it back in, it would work for a few seconds again and then stop.
I noticed that a message popped up on the laptop every time I plugged in the cable, telling me I'd plugged something in. I've used PCs before which have tried to auto-detect which socket has a microphone plugged in and which one has a speaker plugged in, and failed to detect it properly.
So I tried uninstalling the Realtek application which was installed when I got the laptop, is there any need for a separate application to control the sound? Probably not, unless you really must have some fake surround sound effect.
Uninstalling disabled the sound device until I rebooted, but then Windows 7 recognised it and installed the standard driver for the Realtek audio. No more auto-detecting of plugs, and it worked without cutting out.
The only thing that had changed was the levels, the output from the speaker jack was slightly higher for the same % on the slider.