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Programming the FTM-400XDR

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by KI7VFW, Mar 31, 2018.

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  1. KI7VFW

    KI7VFW QRZ Member QRZ Page

    So, being that this is my mobile and permanently mounted in my truck, using the SCU20 cable is not a valid solution. Thus, I am left to the SC card method, which is okay. However, the Yaesu-supplied software is questionable- for starters, it doesn't even accept the data from the radio itself. I backed up the radio to the SD card, brought it in and put it in the computer, and when trying to import the SD card data into the Yaesu ADMS-7 software, it gives an error reading the .dat file from the radio.

    Now, I do recall reading somewhere that the RT Systems software, while being a paid-for product, is superior to the Yaesu program, if only marginally so. My question is, is it worth the 25 bucks? As it is now, I am looking at sitting in my truck and manually entering frequencies and offsets and CTCSS/DTMF. And for the head pounding on the desk I have been doing with the Yaesu software, I am all for it at this point since it doesn't appear that chirp will be supporting this radio anytime soon.

    So, 400 owners, what's your take?
     
  2. KK4YIV

    KK4YIV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Money well spent for the RT Systems software. I have had zero problems using it with the SD card.
     
    WQ2H and KD8DEY like this.
  3. WB8NQW

    WB8NQW Ham Member QRZ Page

    The RT software works very well. Can you use a laptop taken to the truck? The first time you connect the radio to the software it must download the radio to the computer first before you can write to the radio. I had the software before the radio arrived and had built a large file to load to the radio. First time hookup overwrote the file I had constructed.
    The one confusing situation is specifying the "Operating Mode" in the RT data. The FTM-400 ignores this field. The mode is defined in the radio without regard to the memory location. The mode can only be changed by manual intervention from the front panel - with the exception of "AUTO" mode. The mode is not stored in the memory locations.

    73
    Bob
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2018
  4. KE5MC

    KE5MC Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    RTS is worth the $$$.

    One quirk using RTS and the SD card. Hoping I can explain this (well).

    The radio writes and reads to three different folders depending on the option selected. ALL, MEMORY or SETUP and as a standard practice I always write to all three if I'm planning to make changes.

    RTS always uses the ALL location when it writes to the SD card and has no knowledge of the other two. RTS will write whatever radio setup you have in the program and its a good bet it is out of sync with the radio. I seldom read from the card so that's why for me the setup between the radio and computer is likely different.

    Not to worry... Remember that radio write to SETUP you made before you removed the card. That's the key to getting the radio back to the same setup. On the radio you will read from SD card ALL as that's were RTS put your channel & 'setup' data. Radio will power off then on. Go back to read from SD card and select SETUP. Now you are back to the setup you had just before you removed the SD card before you took it to the computer.

    If you are certain that setup on the radio and computer file are the same then a lot of what I wrote you can skip. It's been awhile since I spent any time programing the radio which is a 400D and RTS does update their software from time to time so things may have changed. Easy to figure out of you know what to look for.

    Mike

    P.S. I see what Bob wrote. I'm not sure what to make of it. RTS does have a section for Operating Mode with 4 choices. I have about 40 air band channels programmed from the computer only with AM selected. Maybe because of the frequency it was defaulted to AM without the computers input. I'll have to look into what Bob wrote. I can't say I have every heard of that before.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2018
  5. KE5MC

    KE5MC Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Might be drifting off topic...

    Bob,
    Are you referring to callout #9 in the radio front panel. FMN will never show there. In the RTS screen four item can be selected and I admit never using AUTO at the channel level.

    Sorry, you lost the file. Reading the radio first is a good idea and then saving using unique naming convention like 1stread.xxx. One of the benefits of RTS is the easy copy/paste from file to file. Your original file if saved could be opened in parallel with the 1st read and copy/paste from original to new.

    Mike

    RadioScr.JPG
    RTSScr.JPG
     
  6. K5BBC

    K5BBC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Recommend RT 100%. I haven't used it in an SD card scenario. I have used it on 5 different brands, and multiple models within brands. I particularly like being able to cut and paste between brands and models. I wish it was available for Motorola.

    I think it's worth every dime.
     
  7. AI6AK

    AI6AK Ham Member QRZ Page


    Yep exactly. I've got 2 400's, a 100, a 991(a), a FT2DR and a FT70D and use the RT stuff for all of them. It works perfectly every time and makes programing lots of frequencies and setting up the radio super simple. I use the SD micro card method on the 100, 400 and FT2DR and I've never had an issue.
     
  8. WB8NQW

    WB8NQW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I will try to explain the situation. There are very few Fusion repeaters in my area compared to analog repeaters. Using the RT software I programmed the few Fusion machines in AUTO mode and the rest in FM mode assuming that the FTM-400 would follow automatically the mode in the programmed field. It did not. The radio pays not attention to the MODE entry. Last year at Hamvention I made several trips back and forth between the RT booth and the Yaesu booth. After much discussion from both experts it turns out that there is no field in the stored memory channels for the MODE option. The FTM-400 MODE of operation is determined by settings in the basic radio hardware. If the radio is in AUTO mode it can be changed by an incoming signal to DN, DW or FM but the AUTO bar will remain lit above these modes. If the AUTO bar is not lit the radio will not change the MODE to match the incoming signal. Of course the mode can be changed by manual input to the front panel. Whatever mode the radio is in will not be changed by changing memory channels no matter what is entered in the MODE field by the RT software for that channel. Apparently there is no MODE field data stored in the memory channels within the radio.
    I hope this explanation makes sense.

    73
    Bob
     
    K5BBC likes this.
  9. K5BBC

    K5BBC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Not surprised "Mode" is only front panel control.
     
  10. WB2LBV

    WB2LBV Ham Member QRZ Page

    All Fusion radios do not store the mode selection with memories. It's annoying and something Yaesu should have addressed with firmware updates a long time ago.
     

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