Need an "Audible Frequency Announcement Feature"

wb4jfi at wb4jfi at
Sun Dec 16 23:17:10 CST 2012

After looking at the RS-140 manuals (operating & service), it appears to me that the IF-10C option is required, it interfaces between the internal CPU and the external world, and goes inside the radio.  It uses a standard 8251A UART, and maybe some other stuff, the service manual had some details.

I’m not sure what the IF-232C is, maybe it’s an external cable/module that converts the UART TTL output to RS232 voltage levels?  I think so because Piexx sells a similar IF-232PX adaptor for Kenwood rigs (TS-140 not listed), that converts the serial TTL out of the rig to true RS232 voltage levels.  It costs $55.  If I’m correct, we don’t really need to go to RS232 voltage levels, as TTL levels between the rig and whatever micro should be sufficient.

Piexx also sells a combo board that does both the IF-10C and IF-232 at once.  It costs $89, see:

The manual for that board seems to indicate that sending: if; at 4800 baud will cause the rig to respond with operating frequency, etc.  Not sure what etc encompasses, but if it does send the freq, this makes the project much easier.  if; is NOT a standard Kenwood TS-2000 CAT command, but if it works...

This appears to be a 20-year-old design rig?  We need to find out if Danny’s rig has at least the IF-10C, and if not, obtaining the PIEXX board is a requirement.

From: wb4jfi at 
Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2012 11:34 PM
To: fgentges at ; tacos at 
Subject: Re: Need an "Audible Frequency Announcement Feature"

OK Frank.
I figured that part of this would be easily doable, I have also seen some basic voice synthesis shields for the Arduino, and a Raspberry Pi could easily do this as well, I think.  That is, if the Pi is proven to be reliable enough, which right now I’m not too sure about.

Querying the rig for operating freq may be easy, there is an FA?; command to do that in the Kenwood CAT protocols.  Converting the ASCII result to voice may not be difficult.  Depends on the quality of the synthesizer required, and how often freq updates need to be announced.

I was put off helping by the suggestion of specific “things” that I have no idea what they are (FreqMite and Stinger Singer), and I wasn’t sure about that tapping an oscillator in the receiver chain either.  If the rig is new and smart enough to have a micro there, and if that micro talks CAT via RS232, I think the project would be much simpler than the proposed method.  If no micro, or no RS232 CAT, then it seems like a lot more work, and something that I could only help in the periphery with.

I think a desktop would be overkill, but I’m not “tuned into” this project’s requirements as much as I would like to be, before offering an “expert” opinion.

I’m heavy into a complete kitchen remodel right now, but will do a little research as I can find the time.
Terry, WB4JFI

From: fgentges at 
Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2012 11:15 PM
To: tacos at 
Subject: Re: Need an "Audible Frequency Announcement Feature"


I have looked at the marketing sheet for the Kenwood TS-140.  There is an optional PC interface unit that can create an RS-232 interface.  Then, we could write or modify software to control the radio and report what is needed by voice synthesis.  No indication is made of a voice synthesizer option.

What we need to find is what Kenwood calls the IF-232C/IF-10C Interface Unit.   I checked eBay and did not find one listed.  We might find enough signals coming out of the radio to generate our own interface unit.  I think we could use a used desktop computer and Ubuntu to do the rest of the job.  There are a bunch of ham radio control programs with source code out there that could be used and modified as needed.  In addition there are speech synthesizers that run under Linux and Ubuntu. 

Danny is only asking for an audible frequency announcement feature so we should be able to do that and more with this type setup.

Anyway, these are some thoughts on how we could help Danny. 

I have a whole bunch of work going on so I want to find someone in the group to get this together.  I have several small desktop Dell computers that should work for this task and I would be glad to donate one.

Frank K0BRA

On 12/15/12 9:56 PM, 3t3 wrote:

  TO: Anyone at AMRAD interested in helping Danny Dyer (WB4IDU):

  Danny is looking for a way to get an "audible frequency announcement feature" added to a Kenwood TS-140 transceiver for a blind ham.

  His original request for help follows:
  Is there A place Anywhere in either the RX or Oscillator chain, to tap and read-out, Somewhere on the TS140, with a either a FreqMite, or Stinger Singer, so as to be able to read the tuned frequency, or a useable multiple there of, so that a blind OP, can determine received freq? 

  I realize that, if necessary, a lower power xmit read out is doable, but somewhere in the RX chain would obviously be better !  Any suggestions are welcome ! 

  Your forwarding this to any lists you're part of which might be helpful is fine as well ! 

  To All On These Lists, For All You Are And All You Do,

  Many Thanks From,
  And Please Reply Direct To,
  Danny Dyer, Wb4idu 
  ddyer1 at

     Terry McCarty
    3t3 at


Tacos mailing list
Tacos at

Tacos mailing list
Tacos at

Tacos mailing list
Tacos at
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the Tacos mailing list