Running and configuring WSJT for the first time

     WSJT info  >>  Program setup       Initial configuration       PC to radio Interface
     JT65B info >>  Guide for beginners       QSO example #1       QSO example #2

Configuring the WSJT options properly is important in order to make successful QSO, so please read carefully the following lines. This information is regarding version 5.9.5 but it should be applicable also to newer versions.

When you run WSJT, by clicking on its link in the "Start" menu, three windows will be open. The one with the title "WSJT 6 by K1JT" is the main window, another window "WSJT 5.9.5" shows information about the program start and status and the third windows "SpecJT" is used to graphically show the audio received.

This window "WSJT 5.9.5" is merely informative and contain debug details that could help K1JT when analyzing problems. You can minimize it (but don't close it) as you won't need it for the normal operation.

This window "WSJT 6 by K1JT" is the main window and where you will spend most of the time during operation. You will certainly get familiar with this window, but for now let's use the "Setup - options" menu to configure the program.

Here you should enter your callsign, locator and the RS-232 (COM port) number used for the PTT. You must also choose "EU" or "NA" depending on your location and then click the "Reset defaults" button (if you are neither in Europe nor in North America then leave the default value).

Using the "Mode" menu you could choose the mode you want to use depending on the band and propagation mode. As a guideline they are used as follows:

Now is time to  check the reception, so you should select the desired mode and click the "Monitor" button. The received signal will be graphically shown in the "SpecJT" window, so let's learn a little more about this window

Near the right upper corner there are several selection boxes to select the speed and presentation mode of this window. Options 1 to 5 will show a waterfall display specially intended for the JT65x modes. Option 1 provides a less detailed diagram while option 5 shows the received signal with maximum detail. Initially you should select the fastest possible speed, but you have to bear in mind that this will mean a heavy workload of the processor and that in fact speed 5 wouldn't be practical unless you have a really fast PC (Pentium IV over 2 GHz). On the other hand options H1 and H2 show the signal horizontally and they are intended for FSK441 and JT6M modes. H2 updates the graphic faster than H1, but it also requires a faster computer. Choosing a lower speed will not affect the decoding capability of the program, but only the way in which the signal is graphically shown.

At the bottom of the window "SpecJT"  you will see, beside the clock, three sliders and an "S-Meter" showing the audio level. Using the slider at the left of the S-Meter you should adjust the gain till the value shown is close to 0 (zero) dB. If it's not possible to adjust it enough with the slider then you can also do it using the "Options - Rx volume control" menu. The other two sliders control the brightness and contrast of the diagram and you can use them to adjust it to your personal needs. Finally, you should choose the colour palette you like the most using the "Options - Palette" menu. The default value is "Linrad" and it's possibly the best option in order to distinguish the signal traces from the noise. Configuring this window properly is very important for the JT65x modes, because in general it will be the only way you'll have to detect the presence of signals, too weak to be heard by the human ear. 

Now that the "SpecJT" window is configured, let's tune the main window options in order to optimize the performance of the program. You can see that in the bottom left corner of this window two decimal numbers, with values close to 1, are shown (for instance "1.0069 1.0069"). These values indicate the percentage of deviation of your audio card (both in input and in output) with respect to the desirable sampling rage (11025 Hz). If the values shown here are between 0.9990 and 1.0010 it means you have a good audio card (as far as the sampling rate is concerned), but if they are outside that range then you should use the "Setup - Options" menu and enter the values shown in the bottom left corner of the main windows in the "Rate in" and "Rate out" input fields of the configuration window. It's important to do this because then the program will be able to compensate the difference and the coding/decoding algorithm will work more efficiently.

If you are in Europe you should also tick  the "FSK441 - No Shorthands" option in the "Decode" menu, because those shorthand messages can't be used in Europe in order to consider an MS QSO as valid. Additionally in the "Decode - JT65" menu there are different options that affect the JT65x mode and that you also have to configure. The first of them "Only EME calls" forces the program (if ticked) to only take into account the callsigns marked as "Active on EME" in the CALL3.TXT and so, in general, you would like to have this option disabled.

Next option "No shorthands if TX1" means, if checked, that the program will not try to decode messages of the RO, RRR or 73 types (texts 3, 4 & 5) while you are transmitting text number 1 (only callsigns). Because of the fact that when you are transmitting that text the other station is supposed to answer with text number 2 (callsigns and OOO) it seem logical that the program don't have to try to decode other types of message, so it could be good idea to check this option.

The four last options in the "Decode - JT65" menu control how the decoding algorithm will behave. "No deep search" is the less sensitive option (but provides more guarantees that the decoded text is correct) while "Include Average in Aggressive Deep Search" is the most sensitive (but can lead to generate more false decodes).. In general I would recommend you select "Normal Deep Search", at least till you get enough experience with the program in order to distinguish the texts properly decoded from the false decodes.

Well, now you already have WSJT fully configured and optimized for your own use. It's time to start trying to listen to some signal, get used to the program and even read the operating manual ..hi !

     WSJT info  >>  Program setup       Initial configuration       PC to radio Interface
     JT65B info >>  Guide for beginners       QSO example #1       QSO example #2
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