Posts by 2E0ILY

    I was told many times not to have microwave PA's in the same box as anything else, and to have the big PA in a totally separate, screened enclosure with even the door well grounded to the main body with a wide copper braid strap. A friend ignored this and put his Pluto and cabling and pre amp in with the PA, and had terrible problems. Then he moved the PA into a separate steel box, and all worked fine... Good luck!

    Right, thank you Robert, there's our answer then Michael, it's normal and expected for different firmware versions to give different Pluto output levels at a given symbol rate. I had no idea the differences between firmware versions would be that big though. Digital magic!


    Thanks again Robert.

    I started with a 1.8 meter prime focus, spun aluminium dish that I brought from my previous house and stored it behind my workshop here for eighteen years. I think the very best signal from the WB beacon was about 10.8 on it with a Bullseye LNB. It's an old dish though and probably far from state of the art :)


    Then, for going with a big trailer and removing it, I got given an Andrew 3.0 meter dish. Best I have seen from the WB beacon with this lovely prime focus aluminium dish is 12.4, it sits most of the time at 11.8 to 12.1 depending on weather and how busy the transponder is.


    I am afraid I am not qualified to advise which firmware is best, but with this new RevD Pluto I first updated to AD's 0.34 firmware, then, as I use it mainly with my Portsdown 4, I loaded the BATC recommended patch, I am in bed now and can't remember the exact version, but if you go on the BATC Wikis and search for Portsdown 4 it's linked from there.


    It definitely appears to give the Pluto more power for a given Portsdown 4 power output setting than the 0303 firmware I also tried. Why I have no idea.



    All I have to measure the Pluto's direct power output is one of those tiny power meters model aircraft people use. I do have an elderly Marconi power meter and head, that'll do 2.4 GHz, but it's in storage and I keep forgetting to collect it when I am at the storage place.


    My HP8568B SA won't go high enough to use that with an attenuator, I think it maxes out around 1.3 GHz, when I got it I had no intention of doing anything above 2 meters or 70 CMS...


    The Pluto feeds an AD 0417 preamp, then that feeds an SG Labs 20 W PA via an attenuator. In turn the PA feeds the POTY via about ten feet of LMR 400 with SMA's each end. All the hardware apart from the Portsdown 4 lives in a cabinet under the dish.


    If you want to try, but can't find the PD4 recommended firmware I can find you the link or send you the firmware itself tomorrow, my e-mail is on QRZ under my call sign, 2E0ILY.


    Good luck!


    EDIT:. Here's the link to the BATC recommended Portsdown 4 firmware that shows a lot more signal power from my Rev D Pluto than when I tried 0303 version.


    https://wiki.batc.org.uk/Portsdown_4_Pluto

    Hi,

    how much is a lot more output?

    Regards,

    Detlev

    Actually I am now thinking it may be down to what firmware vesrion is run, I had been using a later firmware version than that recommended for my Portsdown 4, as I used my Pluto with ffmpeg scripts as well. Functionally the later firmware seemed to work perfectly.


    With a late firmware I could not go over "Level-7" in the Portsdown menu without being too strong a signal. Reverting today to the recommended firmware version as an experiment "Level -7" took my power way over that of the beacon and "level -11" is now plenty. I am simply judging power against the beacon using the BATC Wide Band Specrum Monitor. Apart from firmware verision all else remained the same.

    I have two Plutos, when both were working one, a Version B gave a lot more output on the same firmware as my version D. Maybe production tolerances, I do not know. Sometimes a basic pluto.dfu "fix" doesn't seem to flush all traces of previous firmware, at least that's my experience, a uboot-env.dfu is needed.

    Try plugging the adapter directly into the Pluto's USB port and 5V directly into the Pluto's power port, forget the OTG cable for now. It should then be ping'able and appear on the network without any further action. Some OTG cables don't pass data to where you might expect them to...

    Surely any drivers would need loading into the operating system, rather than the Pluto? I have used three different USB to LAN converters, none needed drivers loading under Windows, but not being a Linux user, maybe that particular OS needs them?


    Did the converter come with drivers or a link to where they can be downloaded from?

    It was a bug in the Xilinx software. I will try and write up the procedure, meanwhile, if anyone is desperate to use JTAG to bring a dead Pluto back to life I would happily talk it through on the phone, my e-mail is good on QRZ. you will NEED:


    A Digilent HS3 JTAG programmer, (some discounted ones on UK Ebay at the moment, which is where I got mine).



    An Analog Devices JTAG board, which SHOULD come with a ten way set of male to male pins to fit the small spacing holes in the Pluto PCB. Mine did not, they are hard to find without incurring a lot of handling and postage fees here in the UK. I soldered 1/8 Watt through hole resistor lead wires to the PCB and trimmed them to an equal height. The right pin "thing" would make it a LOT easier. You also need to sign up at Xilinx to get the software, and a free licence. Joining the Secret Service is probably easier and quicker... :)


    See my first post for a link to the procedure, which needs modifying.


    I will write it up, but have lost the best part of two days with the thing, so need to catch up with work. I tend to dig in when I get near to success, even if the time / cost elements are getting suspect.

    I have managed to brick my Pluto, dfu-util does not see it, and it's now in a state where just one LED is lit, and it's very dim.


    Analog Devices tech help forum suggestion (by an AD engineer) was that the only fix was using JTAG and I would need both the interface board from AD and a cable and dongle from Digilent (sp?).


    I purchased those and followed the instructions here after going through hoops to find and download a legacy version of Xilnx programming software that still supported the XMD Console.


    https://wiki.analog.com/university/tools/pluto/devs/fpga


    This stuff sees my Pluto and will communicate with it but I am now stuck at where I am below, is anyone familiar with Xinq programming here, that might be kind enough to assist please?



    I have come back to this after getting a headache and getting nowhere in the week ;)


    I seem close, but no cigars... I *THINK* it's trying to programme the wrong device or in the wrong order, but what do I know?


    I am finding on Google others have issues with forcing a target, but maybe I am way off course. Below I copy past the results of trying to run the run.tcl file AD supply in a zip with other files. I set the Xilinx workspace to C:/workspace and unzipped the supplied files in there, and before trying to run the run.tcl I ensured I was in the workspace directory. Does this give a clues as to what's gone wrong please? Even when the none running core is running the same happens. To get it running I have to power down the PlutoSDR and power it up again.


    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@


    ****** Xilinx System Debugger (XSDB) v2014.1

    **** Build date : Apr 4 2014-14:07:09

    ** Copyright 1986-2014 Xilinx, Inc. All Rights Reserved.



    Got $XILINX_SDK: C:/XilinxSDK/SDK/2014.1


    xsdb% connect -host localhost -port 3121 tcfchan#0

    ::tcfchan#0

    xsdb% targets

    1 xc7z010

    2 APU

    3 ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore #0 (Stopped: Suspended)

    4 ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore #1 (Running)

    xsdb% target 1

    xsdb% targets

    1* xc7z010

    2 APU

    3 ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore #0 (Stopped: Suspended)

    4 ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore #1 (Running)

    xsdb% cd C:/workspace

    xsdb% dir

    Volume in drive C has no label.

    Volume Serial Number is D080-C2AD


    Directory of C:\workspace


    11/06/2022 09:50 <DIR> .

    11/06/2022 09:50 <DIR> ..

    10/06/2022 10:31 <DIR> .metadata

    20/08/2021 13:12 31,486 ps7_init.tcl

    10/06/2022 12:28 <DIR> RemoteSystemsTempFiles

    03/03/2017 08:56 257 run.tcl

    11/06/2022 10:11 567 SDK.log

    20/08/2021 13:12 964,144 system_top.bit

    20/08/2021 13:13 448,084 u-boot.elf

    5 File(s) 1,444,538 bytes

    4 Dir(s) 422,109,966,336 bytes free

    xsdb% xmd source -tcl run.tcl


    ****** Xilinx Microprocessor Debugger (XMD) EngineExecuting user script : run.tcl


    JTAG chain configuration

    --------------------------------------------------

    Device ID Code IR Length Part Name

    1 4ba00477 4 arm_dap

    2 13722093 6 xc7z010


    --------------------------------------------------

    Enabling extended memory access checks for Zynq.

    Writes to reserved memory are not permitted and reads return 0.

    To disable this feature, run "debugconfig -memory_access_check disable".


    --------------------------------------------------


    CortexA9 Processor Configuration

    -------------------------------------

    Version.............................0x00000003

    User ID.............................0x00000000

    No of PC Breakpoints................6

    No of Addr/Data Watchpoints.........4


    Connected to "arm" target. id = 64

    Starting GDB server for "arm" target (id = 64) at TCP port no 1234

    Processor stopped


    Error Executing User Script : run.tcl

    Error :: ERROR: No Elf file associated with target


    ****** XMD v2014.1 (64-bit)

    **** SW Build 881834 on Fri Apr 4 14:06:19 MDT 2014

    ** Copyright 1986-2014 Xilinx, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


    xsdb%



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    I cross posted this to a dedicated Analog Devices forum and a company representative has said I will need to use a JTAG cable and adapter to resurrect it. He gave no further details... Has anyone done this, what's involved and is adequate software available free of charge? I have to balance the cost of the hardware JTAG stuff (about £100 UK Sterling), plus the risk it still will not work, against buying a new Pluto.


    Thanks.

    I am using a RevB Pluto for narrow and wide band Oscar 100 and maybe it got RF into it, but for whatever reason after 18 months trouble free usage it stuck in TX mode. I rebooted it and although I can now update or change firmware its off frequency. Both TX and RX, SDR Console for example sees no sat signas on either wide or narrow band frequencies, and it did before. The Pluto is outputting RF on command but unfortunately I have no means of verifying the frequency it's sending.


    I have used dfu mode a couple of times before, but now, although I can get the single LED to show I am unable to proceed further. dfu-util -l shows the below response, is it fixable and how might I proceed please? Thanks.



    C:\>dfu-util -l



    dfu-util 0.9


    Copyright 2005-2009 Weston Schmidt, Harald Welte and OpenMoko Inc.

    Copyright 2010-2016 Tormod Volden and Stefan Schmidt

    This program is Free Software and has ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY

    Please report bugs to http://sourceforge.net/p/dfu-util/tickets/


    Device has DFU interface, but has no DFU functional descriptor

    Deducing device DFU version from functional descriptor length

    Cannot open DFU device 0456:b674

    Device has DFU interface, but has no DFU functional descriptor

    Deducing device DFU version from functional descriptor length

    Cannot open DFU device 0456:b674


    C:\>



    EDIT.....


    I wrote the above earlier but didn't post it here. Since then following has occurred.


    Well one step forward and several back. I found the Plutodrivers were corrupted so downloaded them afresh and reloaded them. This then allowed me to enter dfu and I used dfu-util to update pluto.dfu, boot.dfu and u-boot-env.dfu


    The Pluto accepted these commands and returned no errors. But it still was not transmitting or receiving on frequency. I checked the master oscillator frequency setting with Putty was correct and it appeared to be so.


    In desperation I then used dfu-util to update u-boot-extra-env.dfu


    It seemed to accept this, and presumably rewrote any settings in the device. However, my Pluto now is not recognised by my Win 10 64 bit PC at all, dfu-util -l sees and returns nothing at all, and the Pluto sits there with LED1 glowing very dimly. The other LED never lights at all. Device Manager does not show it, nor for it to be in DFU mode So I seem to have made matters worse. Is this now a lost cause or is there still any hope please?


    Thanks. I had high hopes earlier when I found it was actually in DFU mode...

    I want to build a new, more powerful Windows PC for digital amateur TV usage.

    It has to efficiently on the fly encode H264 and H265 from camera or hard drive.



    I am looking at an Intel i912900K processor, a Gigabyte Z690 Gaming X motherboard, 32GB DDR5 RAM, a Samsung 980 Pro M.2 PCIE 4.0 SSD, running off a Corsair 750W PSU. I haven't decided on the graphics card but it will support hardware H265. I believe the processor will also support internal GPU operation?


    I am now told this set up really needs Windows 11 to work as efficiently as it can, so my question is, who is using Windows 11 and what is working and what is giving problems please?


    Off the top of my head, BATC Minitiouner and software, SDR Console V3 for narrow band SSB, and Pluto version B with updated firmware from F5OEO and F5UI with a USB to LAN converter. Do these all run OK under Windows 11?


    Thanks.

    I asked the same question on the BATC site, where you also kindly replied, so for completeness I copy and paste my reply again here, thanks Dominique!


    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@


    Thanks for the speedy reply Dominique. I ended up fixing the missing .dll by manually placing it in C:/windows/system32



    I had assumed it needed a 64 bit .dll, but to be honest I am not good with this sort of thing [Blocked Image: https://forum.batc.org.uk/images/smilies/icon_e_smile.gif]



    The programme now launches and starts with no errors, but only the "LED" that lights is the right hand one. My Pluto is under the dish on an ethernet to USB adaptor and I don't think the application is seeing the (fixed IP address) Pluto. I know the notes say that USB over LAN is a work in progress, so I will wait to see how others get on with this. I may well be doing something wrong, but my Portsdown 4 sees it at the same IP address, so although I would like to give you useful feedback I am probably not the right person to give any opinion on this as I am a bit clueless, to say the least! [Blocked Image: https://forum.batc.org.uk/images/smilies/icon_e_wink.gif]



    Thanks for the fantastic contributions you are making, good luck, and best wishes.

    Firstly many thanks for your work on this application. I have been using the older Free Stream Coder V 2.80 with no issues. I downloaded the current version of DATV-Easy (V1.25) and it installed seemingly without errors, and when I launch it the application opens and can be modified, but when I press "Start" I get this:



    "The program can't start because Api-ms-win-core-path-l1-1-0.dll is missing from your computer".



    I installed the claimed missing .dll manually in C:/Windows/sysWOW64 but the error is still present.



    OS is Windows 7 64 bit Pro. I am trying to run it on the same PC as is currently running Free Stream Coder fine. May I trouble you for any ideas how I might go about fixing this please, and thanks again for your work.

    You need to be pretty brutal, they are on tight, and if I recall correctly have a thin section rubber O ring as a water seal. I found carefully heating mine up with a hot air gun on low, made the cap more pliable.


    The second one I did on my Bridgeport universal milling machine without removing the cap and blew any debris out with an airline. I knew then what was behind the cap, and how far down. One of the perks of my job :) But yes, they're on tight ..

    Testing a new cable is easy if you buy some break out boards that allow you to plug a mini or micro USB connector on and it brings its pins to a workable sized PCB. As to where to buy one I can't help, sorry. I got mine off eBay, but to get one that worked I did buy a few different ones, it's a bit of a lottery....


    Perhaps you can get USB connectors with flying leads and make your own bespoke one?