Low audio output from WSJT-X into G90 through DigiRig

The title may be misleading, but this is where I am with this right now.

It all started when I decided to set up HF packet via DireWolf last week. Everything was working fine, but I started having trouble staying connected to remote stations.

As part of an article on setting up a BBS on HF Packet, one of the suggestions I read was to delete the PulseAudio system completely. I did so. Immediately after, I had very low audio output from WSJT-X into the rig. I had the power set to 10W, but I was only hitting the radio with enough audio to transmit one watt. The ALC was at 100% no matter what I tried. Using alsamixer, I could get the output down to zero by moving the slider to 0 or muting the speaker.

I reinstalled PulseAdudio, but still had the same issues.

This installation was initially a Build-A-Pi installation, but I decided I would start from scratch, but rather than use build-a-pi, I would do a minimal install. I would install only FLRig and WSJT-X. I also thought my cheap USB soundcard might be the culprit, so I ordered a DigiRig.

I also read that there was an issue with the G90 itself, and the updated firmware has new modes available (U-D mode, USB digital). So, I updated the firmware on the G90 to the latest on the front and back ends.

So now, I have the following:
⁃ A minimal installation of the OS
⁃ WSJT-X installled. It is receiving and decoding perfectly, but will only transmit a low audio level signal.
⁃ Digirig replacing the old USB soundcard
⁃ FLRig installed. It controls the radio just fine.

And I have the same issue I started with.

Is there something I missed?

Let’s narrow down area of troubleshooting between the hardware and software first.
Do you have the same issue on a PC?

I don’t really have access to a PC… I can probably run windows in parallels (on macos). would that be a good starting point?

OS virtualization sounds like more work than it is worth. Any friends or neighbors with a PC?
My impression upon inspection of my old crap drawers was that those are quite common.

If the issue ends up to be of a hardware nature, I would check the line input sensitivity setting on G90. This is about the only radio where that option is available.

Hmm… everyone I know is macos and linux. but, I did try the aux input level. I tried it from 0 to 15.

Was the level on the radio responsive to your changes?
You can also confirm the changes of the output level from Digirig by plugging regular headphones into the audio jack:

The input level did sort of change… at least, when I put level to 0, I got a zero level…

Now that I think about it, I did grab some headphones and put them on my workbench, as I was going to try that next. but I got sidetracked. Let me try that next.

I’ll also check out the video.


okay! i got it… i did all of the testing in the video you posted. I did not test on windows, but replicated the ideas in linux. everything worked perfectly on my old interface (CE-19) and the DigiRig.

So then, I tried transmitting using the Mic (this is maybe the second time I have used a mic in 30 years of ham radio). It did NOT work. So, I searched around.

It turns out that this is a known issue on the G90. you have to physically give it a whack to make it work every now and then. After trying everything else, I gave it a whack, and it started working… but only for an hour or so… another whack got it working again.

So, I need to put this thing on the bench and open it up.

Thanks so much for all your help!

Thanks for the update. Sorry to hear that your radio requires service, hopefully that can be fixed for good.

yeah. this kinda thing happens. linux sound/audio is SUPER complex, so that was the first place I started looking. The radio is out of warranty, so I’ll just pull it apart. I read a few posts from people who found cold joints in the tuner area, and reflowed them, and had no more problems. I’ll check it out.

I am hanging on to the DigiRig. The PTT circuit seems to be much more stable than the one I got with the CE-19.