I'll tackle the cable....If you buy the CT-62, you'll also need an adapter if your computer only has USB connections. Keyspan makes one that works well, I don't know the model offhand.
Or...RT Systems makes a custom cable for 30.00 that has worked flawlessly for me with my 857D. It has the correct chipset that works really good. I have use this with XP and Windows 7.
You will need a seperate interface if you plan on using the digital modes. Signalink USB is one of them. It's the one I use, I'm sure others might work as well. You can also homebrew your own cable, but the Signalink has its own soundcard and frees up your computers soundcard for Windows sounds and some tunes.
You'll have to research the software. HRD seems to be popular. I like it, but it is complicated at first but becomes simple soon enough.
If you want to program in all the frequencies, etc... the RT Systems software and USB cable can be had pretty cheaply if you shop around. This is great for loading the 2m / 70cm stuff if you have a lot of repeaters in your area.
For rig control, logging and digital modes, it is hard to beat HRD. The only issue I have seen is on PCs with 256 or 512 meg of memory -- DM780 can really bog things down to a crawl.
--Thanks for the info. For some reason, I thought RT Systems only messed with ICOM software...not sure why I thought that. Anyway, I ordered their USB cable and software and it should be here in a few days.
We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give. --Sir Winston Churchill
I use RT Systems, great products and great service...
In may I called them and notified them that their software for my 897D could not handle the odd offset used at the ISS.
They rewrote the program over nite and emailed me, then they
asked for permission to log onto my computer and test it out...
Quite a few companies in the ha business have something to learn from them...
Yep. When I got my Ft-817ND I found an issue with two of the settings being swapped when sent to the radio. I sent them an email, and when they returned from a brief vacation they fixed the issue and sent me a link to download the new file.
Found another issue the other day -- which I assume they will also fix quickly. Got to send that email...