Best CW decoding software

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio Software' started by N5VEI, Dec 19, 2011.

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  1. N5VEI

    N5VEI Ham Member QRZ Page

    Anyone have any advice on the best CW decoding software? I use HRD now, but it leaves a lot to be desired on CW decoding.
    Bill R.
  2. WA6TKD

    WA6TKD Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've only played around with one: CwGet ( ), it's shareware so you can try it for free, has no time limit, and nags only when closing the program. It doesn't seem to be all that accurate unless the sender is using near perfect spacing which seems to be somewhat rare according to this program.:)

    I use it mostly for it's audio spectrum display, that is pretty cool and acts like a spectrum analzyer limited to the bandpass of the filter width of your receiver.
  3. WA4OTD

    WA4OTD Ham Member QRZ Page

    CWGet is pretty good if the conditions are not too crowded and you play with the settings.
  4. K3DCW

    K3DCW QRZ Lifetime Member #212 Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    Try MRP ( I've played with CWGet, but found MRP to be far superior in decoding just about all CW, machine and hand-sent. It can't correct for a truly horrific fist, but it does so better than any other program I've seen.


    KD9ATF likes this.
  5. K7MEM

    K7MEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have tried DM780 (HRD), Fldigi, EhoCW, and CWLab04r. The interface is mostly the same for all of them but some are definitely better than others.

    I like EhoCW because of the Iambic paddle capabilities, however it uses a very slow decode algorithm so it copies rather far behind. If it starts to mess up, you are so far behind the received code that you have no hope of catching up. Speed changes cause it to start speed hunting again.

    CWLab04r does a pretty good job of decoding. It also has built in CW practice, so you can get your speed up without being on the air.

    I find that DM780 and Fldigi are about the same in CW decoding. Unless it is copying machine sent code they both seem to put far too many spaces between characters. With all the abbreviations that CW operators use, it often tough to determine whether it is decoding correctly or not.

    I haven't tried CWGet or MRP yet, but I wll have to try them out.

    For me, the best interface for CW is a program written in 1988 by Kevin Schmidt W9CF. The program is written in C, compiles with Turbo C, and runs in the DOS mode. The interface, TX and RX, to the radio is through a serial port. TX is rather simple, but RX requires a hardware filter that converts the audio to zeros and ones. I built a interface that filters and converts the audio directly to zeros and ones, which then feeds directly into the serial port. A simple LED tells be when I am on frequency correctly. The filter is set to match the TX offset for most of my rigs. I run the software on an old Altura 486 Sub-Note laptop which is running Windows 3.1. I have put it up against DM780 and Fldigi and it beats them every time. The software only takes two or three characters to initially zoom in on the code speed and then tracks the incomming code. Since it depends on the last couple of characters, to tell the difference between a dot or dash, it compensates easily for speed changes.

    I keep on trying to replace it with something more up to date, but I haven't found anything yet.
  6. W6MQI

    W6MQI Ham Member QRZ Page

    That thing between your ears is the best CW decoder made try it. Some great features are IF shift, NB, noise reduction, notch filter, etc. I've been using mine for 39 years never fails and it doesn't require batteries just AMAZING!
    KF0W, KM6WYE, KC9RNK and 2 others like this.
  7. AB2T

    AB2T Ham Member QRZ Page

    You have iF shift, NB, notch, etc. built into your ears? Dang, why weren't those options on the order form while I was in the oven? :confused:
    F6DKQ and K9FV like this.
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