PointoPoint link between two Ninotnc`s

Today I am playing with tncattach, I thought it would be fun to test this with the Ninotnc`s.

I have connect the first Ninotnc n9600A4 to my rpi 4 and install “tncattach” on it. The TNCs are connected with each other by means of a short cable.  Cross cable. The tnc are running 9600Baud

TNC1             TNC2
RX                   TX
TX                   RX

# If you don't already have a compiler installed
sudo apt install build-essential

# Clone repository from GitHub
git clone https://github.com/markqvist/tncattach.git

# Move into source directory
cd tncattach

# Make program
make

# Install to system
sudo make install

The next thing I did was setting up a pointopoint link. But first attach the modem.

sudo tncattach /dev/ttyACM0 57600 -d --noipv6 --noup --mtu 329
sudo ifconfig tnc0 10.0.0.1 pointopoint 10.0.0.2

The second Ninotnc n9600A3 I have connected to my rpi 3

sudo tncattach /dev/ttyACM0 57600 -d --noipv6 --noup --mtu 329 
sudo ifconfig tnc0 10.0.0.2 pointopoint 10.0.0.1

I made a short video of how it works.

That was Fun….

Kantronics KAM All Mode

Today I am the lucky one again. I have added a new modem to the collection. Namely the Kantronics KAM All Mode.

The KAM is using the oldest Firmware that I know of. Version 5.00. The newest is version 8.2. Have a look at this link
Here can you find the Kam Manual.
It is the third Kantronics modem I have. I have the KPC3 (non plus) and the KPC9612 + and now the Kantronics Kam All Mode. Now I am still looking for the KPC3+

NinoTnc update

On my very expensive scoop (hi) you see a packet frame @ 1200 Baud received from a station about 50 kilometers away. Looks fine to me.

After updating the Firmware from version V2.35 to V2.81 I see a good increase in the decoded frames.

How to update the Firmware

wget http://tarpn.net/zflash2020oct/tarpnflashinstaller.sh
chmod +x tarpnflashinstaller.sh
./tarpnflashinstaller.sh

Run
tarpnflash usb
* My Ninotnc is connected to ttyACM0.
tarpnflash version ttyACM0
* Is there a newer version available in the dir "ninotnc" you can run.
tarpnflash flash ttyACM0 (version number)
* Now the Firmware is being updated.
* Check if the flash of the firmware went well.
tarpflash version ttyACM0
* Great now running Version v2.81
/dev/ttyACM0 NinoTNC v2.81

I immediately built my second NinoTNC. I am very curious how that works with IL2P mode, Improved Layer 2 Protocol. In the picture below, the two NinoTnc`s are running at 2400 Baud with IL2P mode. Functions perfectly. Now I have some problems with adjusting to 4800 and 9600 Baud. I have to look into this.

[0]N9600A3>IDENT::TestPacket=FirmwareVr:2.81=SerialNmbr<0x00<0x00<0x00<0x00<0x00<0x00<0x00>0x00>=UptimeMilS:0007C5F2=BrdSwchMod:02060002=AX25RxPkts:0000001B=IL2PRxPkts:00000000=IL2PRxUnCr:00000000=TxPktCount:0000000A=PreamblCnt:0000001D=LoopCycles:006CD389

NinoTnc progress

Boy, I can hit my head against the wall. I made a very rookie mistake. I had  soldered a number of Leds the wrong way round.  Tsss before I finally invented that. Very stupid.
But when I finally found out (it’s even in the description on the tarpn website) it now works the way it should.

Let’s test how the reception is. (aprs on 144.800Mhz @ 1200 Baud)

I feel like he is a little deaf. Looks like he’s missing some frames. Maybe it’s the setup I’m using. I am using a Yaesu ft7800 with the NinoTnc directly on the Mini Din of the radio. I have to figure this out, I will read the Tarpn website one more time.

First let’s update the flash.

Mmmmm, let’s give it a go.

Nice…

A Linbpq configuration example

bpq32.cfg

PORT
PORTNUM=3                                
ID=NinoTNC     
TYPE=ASYNC                                
PROTOCOL=KISS                         
FULLDUP=0                      
COMPORT=/dev/ttyACM0
SPEED=57600                    
CHANNEL=A                      
PERSIST=225                    
SLOTTIME=20                   
TXTAIL=1                       
QUALITY=1                      
MINQUAL=81                     
MAXFRAME=1                     
FRACK=6000              
RESPTIME=40                    
RETRIES=20                     
PACLEN=236                      
UNPROTO=ID                     
L3ONLY=0                       
DIGIFLAG=0                     
DIGIPORT=0                     
USERS=1                        
IGNOREUNLOCKEDROUTES=1  
ENDPORT

I am very happy to be able to add this (Nino)TNC to the collection.

KPC3 Non Plus

Today I have been playing around with a KPC3 Non +. I bought this KPC3 in America and the upgrade Firmware in England. So you can imagine that it was not cheap.

So now we are going to insert the new Firmware.

I am very happy that it works perfectly. Now I want to do a comparison test with direwolf. Both with the 6.0 Firmware version and the 8.2 Firmware version. First, let’s find some time to get involved (again) with the hobby

KPC-3/9612/Kam Firmware upgrade

Firmware Kantronics

Firmware for the Kantronics KPC3 Non + and the KPC9612 Non + also the Kam.

Firmware For KPC-3

KPC-3 (non plus) 5.0 Firmware
KPC-3 (non plus) 5.1 Firmware
KPC-3 (non plus) 6.0 Firmware
KPC-3 (non plus) 8.2 Firmware

Manuals

KPC-3 (non plus) Manual
KPC-3 v8.2 Rom Manual Addendum
Kam Manual

Firmware for other Kantronics TNC’s:

KPC-9612 (non plus) v6.0 Firmware
KPC-9612 (non plus) v7.0 Firmware
KPC-9612 (non plus) v8.2 Firmware

KAM v5.0 Firmware
KAM v6.1 Firmware
KAM+ v8.0 Firmware
KAM+ v8.2 Firmware
KAM+ All Firmware, Schematic, & Parts List

KPC-2 v5.02 Firmware, Schematic, & Parts List
KPC-4 v5.01 Firmware, Schematic, & Parts List

NinoTnc N96003A Pre-Order

It is now possible to order the NinoTNC as a Pre-Order. It is expected to be delivered in May.
Order it at… https://www.etsy.com/listing/771765516/preorder-n9600a3-circuit-board-and-cpu

I ordered two, I am very curious. Just wait for the B.O.M (Bill Of Materials)file and then I can order the components.

PRE ORDER LISTING–PLEASE READ: This is a revision of the N9600A that eliminates the need for a USB-serial daughter board, which is now in short supply in the US. This PCB, N9600A3, provides pads to use an MCP2221A-I/P USB bridge on-board, along with a USB-B connector. I expect to have stock ready to ship in May 2020, but that date may extend due to current global events interrupting supply chains.

More information about this device is available here: http://tarpn.net/t/nino-tnc/nino-tnc.html

This kit contains the printed circuit board and programmed dsPIC CPU required to build one TARPN N9600A3 packet radio terminal node controller (TNC). This kit does not include any other parts from the bill of materials, you will have to obtain more parts from a supplier to build a complete working TNC. Basic electronics tools and skills will be required to assemble a working TNC. You’ll need to be competent with a soldering iron, and have a supply of small-gauge solder. Side cutters will be necessary, as well as tweezers or needle-nose pliers.

The PCB is a high-quality 4-layer board with blue finish and white silkscreen for part locations and identifiers. It requires only thru-hole parts for assembly.

Once assembled, the N9600A3 TNC acts as a multi-mode data modem you can use to create narrow-band datalinks with VHF and UHF communication radios. The N9600A3 TNC sends and receives data using several user-selectable modulation methods and link protocols: traditional AX.25 modes at 1200 bps AFSK (like APRS) and 9600 bps using GMSK (compatible with the G3RUH standard).

N9600A3 differs from previous revision with the incorporation of an on-board USB bridge and USB-B connector, as well as 2 more DIP switch options that will enable several future firmware features that are under development now. All these future firmware upgrades will be supported in N9600A2 as well, through KISS options (N9600A2 does not have as many switches).

The TNC also supports an experimental layer 2 protocol called IL2P which incorporates several improvements, including Forward Error Correction. IL2P can be used as an alternative to AX.25 on both 1200 AFSK and 9600 GMSK modes. You can read more about IL2P here:

http://tarpn.net/t/il2p/il2p.html

9600 bps GMSK will not work with all voice-band radios. It requires a radio with a data port (direct modulator/discriminator connection) or other wide-bandwidth connection. It should be possible to use 1200 bps AFSK mode with most voice-band radios, once you have obtained (or made) suitable connection cables.

You can find more information about this TNC, build instructions, bill of materials, configuration tips, and a community of users at the following links:

http://tarpn.net/t/nino-tnc/nino-tnc.html
https://groups.io/g/ninotnc/topics

Some disclaimers: We are selling this kit at very close to our cost, in the hopes of growing the Terrestrial Amateur Radio Packet Network (TARPN) and the entire packet radio community. You must assemble and use this device at your own risk. Operation of any radio device on the Amateur Radio bands requires applicable licensing by the government of the country where the device is used. If you damage the PCB or CPU beyond repair during assembly or use, you’ll need to pony up another $7.57 plus shipping to order a replacement. We do not guarantee suitability for use for commercial purposes. Do not use this device as part of a life-saving system.

I hope that you enjoy assembling and using this device, and grow a packet radio network where you live!

73,
Nino
KK4HEJ

Direwolf <> AEA PK88

144.800Mhz @ 1200Baud (Test on 03-29-20 11:00 (rx only))

Today I did a reception test with the AEA PK88 and Direwolf. I must say that I am impressed with the PK88. This is the best test I have done so far. Now the conditions were not optimal, there is very little traffic at the time. So I will probably test it again at a busier time. Even now I let the reception run for half an hour.

So we missed 19 packets out of a total of 211 packtes from Direwolf. This compared to the tnc3s that missed 73 out of 219 packets from Direwolf.
Below again the TNC3s comparison with Direwolf.

It is nice to see that this AEA PK-88 performs so well after all these years and different owners.

The last week I save all the Aprs traffic I receive and post it on a blog. You might like to take a look there. https://pd9q.blogspot.com