Sunday, August 22, 2010

"Monitor" Band Map for Logger32

In reading through the manual for the Logger32 logging program I came across a rather neat feature. The "BandMap" which displays cluster spots for the particular band your radio is tuned to, has a "Monitor" feature. This allows you to pop-up 1 or 2 separate BandMap windows which you can configure to watch the spots on a particular band or ALL bands at once! The advantages I see for this is that you can have a BandMap window that constantly monitors 6-M for any activity even though your radio is tuned to another band. Then, if something is spotted on 6-M, you will see it instantly in the "Monitor" window. If you configure the Monitor BandMap to watch ALL frequencies, then you can spot the color coding for countries you may need on a particular band or mode that may appear while you are working on another band. I see this as a HUGE improvement to the normal BandMap which simply tracks the band your radio is tuned to.

On the left you can see a Monitor BandMap that has been set to display spots on 6-M. By the BLUE color code I can tell that there are FOUR stations spotted which I need on 6-M. If I "mouse-over" the spots I can see who made the spot and be able to tell if it's possible for me to work them. Of course, if I had my cluster set to one that only displayed NA spotters, then I could forgo that step. (Click on any photo to see it larger then use your BACK button to return to this page.)

The Monitor portion of the BandMap allows you to select up to two separate BandMaps to monitor other bands. If you add a "GEN" band to your ADIFBands.txt file and configure it under Tools | Setup Bands & Modes, then you can display a BandMap like the one shown at the right. This shows ALL the spots that come in from 0.003 to 30.0 MHz. Again, by looking at the BLUE color coded spots, I can see there are two New Ones available for me on 17-M. This feature prevents me from having to step my radio through all the bands just to locate those spots that are New Ones for me. Another great reason to use this feature.

The two Monitor BandMaps can be accessed from your normal BandMap window by pulling down the "Monitor" menu bar and selecting Monitor No. 1 or No. 2. Then in the Monitor window that pops-up you can pull down "Band" from the menu and choose the band you want to monitor. You can click on spots in the Monitor window just the same as in the normal BandMap window and your radio will QSY to that frequency and mode. Search for "The Band Map" in the Logger32 Help File to see all the features of the BandMaps including the Monitor BandMaps.

The Logger32 Help File gives instructions on how to set up the program for the "General" BandMap feature. Search the Help File for "Tips Tricks and Troubleshooting" and scroll down to item No. 2.2. I've copied that section below with one modification - you need to restart Logger32 after you make the changes in order for the program to recognize them.  NOTE: the "bandmode table" is found on the Menu Bar under Tools | Setup Bands & Modes.

2.1 How can I setup a Bandmap to show all HF spots? With the introduction of the monitor bandmaps you can set up one of the windows so as to watch all the HF bands at once.
1. Open up your ADIFBands.txt file in a text editor and edit in a new line at the bottom to read GEN (for General)
2. In your bandmode table make an entry to cover the full range of your radio (I set the lower freq to 0.003 and the upper freq to 30.0) and give the line a band name of GEN.
NOTE: Close out Logger32 now and restart it for it to recognize these changes.
3. Select the band GEN in the bandmap and it will show all the spots as they come in.
You can also use the ZOOM facility in this bandmap (see the help file) and just show (say) 40m to 15m if you so wish.

Here is more of a "Cookbook" description of those instructions:

1. Find your Logger32 directory (usually C:\Logger32) using Windows Explorer. 
2. Double-click the file "ADIFBands.txt" and if asked, open it in "Notepad."
3. At the bottom of the current list, add an entry for "GEN" and SAVE that file.
4. In Logger32, under "Tools", choose "Setup Bands & Modes".
5. At the bottom of the list, enter "GEN" under Band, ".003000" for Lower freq.,
     and "30.000000" for Upper freq.  Set Stats to "N", Radio # to "1" and both
     Rotor columns to "0".  Now click on "Apply."
6. Close out Logger32.  Then start Logger32 again and select GEN in any additional
     Bandmap (not the one that is locked to the band of your radio.)

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