January 2, 2021

Configuring WSJT-X with a Kenwood TS-480SAT and SignaLink USB

Communicating on HF using various digital modes is a ton of fun.  There has been a significant shift in the popularity of digital modes toward FT8 over the last couple of years.  PSK31, JT65, and other digital modes have nearly disappeared from the bands.  This means hams need to join in the FT8 craze if they want to operate digital modes and actually make contacts.  WSJT-X is my preferred software for JT65, FT8, and FT4.  In this post, I will share how I have configured my station for WSJT-X digital HF communication.

Station Control

I use a Kenwood TS-480SAT that is capable of 100W on HF and 6M.  The TS-480SAT is interfaced to the computer for radio control through the radio's serial port through a Keyspan USA-19HS USB adapter.  The radio's audio is interfaced to the computer from the TS-480SAT's data port through a SignaLink Integrated USB Sound Card.  I have used this configuration for years with excellent results.

Kenwood TS-480SAT

SignaLink Integrated USB Sound Card

WSJT-X Settings Configuration

  • Cat Control - Serial Port: COM3
  • Serial Port Parameters: Baud Rate = 57600
  • Data Bits: Default
  • Stop Bits: Default
  • Handshake: Hardware
  • Force Control Lines: DTR and RTS are both blank
  • PTT Method: CAT
  • Transmit Audio Source: Rear/Data
  • Mode: USB
  • Split Operation: None
  • Input: USB Audio CODEC - Mono
  • Output: USB Audio CODEC - Mono

TS-480 SAT Configuration

Menu 56 Com Port Parameters = 57600
Menu 60 VOX Operation With Data Input = Off

Be sure to check out my article on setting up WSJT-X for automatic logging with Ham Radio Deluxe.

Good DX and 73, NJ2X

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Jim - K8SI said...

Thanks for the setup info. I just wanted to point out that if you're running Ham Radio Deluxe all you have to do in WSJT-X settings is pick Ham Radio Deluxe as the Rig. Then for PTT you pick CAT, Source is the same as yours and for split I was told to pick Fake It.

Jim - K8SI

NJ2X said...

Thank you Jim for the helpful information. 73, Michael (NJ2X)

Dale WG5N said...

Hi Michael,
I have a Kenwood TS480HX and was kind of considering taking the same route that you did. I was wondering why you went with 57600 baud rate? My 480HX defaults at 9600. Would I need to change that in the rig's settings and choose the same in HRD.

Dale WG5N

NJ2X said...

Hi Dale,

I choose the 57600 rate because it is faster and this rate works. Haven't had any issues since I started using it many moons ago.

If you want to use 57600 then you do need to change the settings on the radio to 57600.

73, NJ2X