Contributed by Duane Fischer

The Universal Millennium QSYer KeyPad

Now available for ICOM and Yaesu radios.

The Millennium QSYer keypad allows direct frequency entry for any ICOM after 735 or Yaesu models FT-817 or FT-100 radio, that has a computer control (CI-V) jack or data port. A great operating accessory for any ICOM or Yaesu radio, this keypad is indispensable to those operators who own ICOMs that don't have their own panel keypads (such as the 706 series) and those operators who are visually impaired. This device emulates the old Stone Mountain QSYER and is a must for those with a visual handicapp. Frankly, if you are operating an ICOM IC-706 in a mobile environment without one of these keypads, you are working way too hard.

The keypad performs a number of functions. It uses a sixteen key arrangement in four columns. First, of course, it allows you to directly enter frequencies into the radio. You can enter the frequency as either kHz or MHz and the keypad will figure out which you intended. Thus, to QSY to 14.254 MHz, you can enter either 14254 or 14*254. You can also omit any trailing zeros. Thus, to go to the bottom of the 40 meter band, you simply enter the 7 digit. The keypad also generally knows which mode to switch the radio to.

If you enter a frequency in the SSB portion of the 20 meter band, it knows to switch the radio to USB. If you enter a frequency in the SSB portion of the 40 meter band, it knows to switch to LSB. For the CW band segments it automatically switches to CW. Enter a 2 meter repeater frequency, and it switches to FM. Enter a frequency in the FM broadcast band, and it switches to WFM. Additionally the latest version also works with short-wave, utility, broadcast band and public service bands.

The keypad itself uses high quality full-travel (not membrane) keys and emits a pleasant beep whenever a key is pressed. Thus letting blind users know that the key has been pressed and activated. The same tone is used for all keys.

The keypad performs a number of other functions as well. It can immediately select any numbered memory in your radio, up to one hundred. To go to memory 15, for example, you simply press the top right button (memory) and pres the numbers one and five. It also allows you to switch between the two VFOs on most ICOMs (not the 728 or some older models) with a single keystroke. In addition, another keystroke allows you to turn on and off the split functions. Simple keystrokes also allow you to switch between the VFO and memory modes.

The bottom right key on the pad will cause some Icom trancievers, or receivers, to speak, provided the optional speech module has been installed in the transciever or receiver. The current frequency, S-meter level and mode will be said. Some Icom's that speak this way are: R71, 746, 756 Pro etc. Yaesu does not offer speech!

The keypad provides for either 4800 or 9600 baud operation. This is set from the keypad by pressing the '*' key twice and then the desired baud rate.

The keypad can be operated from either your station power supply (8-14 volts) or from an internal battery. The power consumption is about 10 microamps. There is no on/off switch, as the drain is so small that the battery should last for years without being changed. It includes a cable to connect to the computer jack on your radio.

The keypad box dimensions are 3.25" x 4.38" x 0.9". If you are ordering for an older ICOM radio (such as the IC-735) please note this with your order, as those older radios require slightly different computer commands.

The price for this unit (wired and tested) is $95 postpaid anywhere in the US (slightly higher for foreign shipping). A kit version is available for $70 including shipping. Extra cables are $3 each.

If you are visually impaired, please state that. There is a special audio cassette available of the documentation at no extra charge.

Universal Millennium QSYers can be ordered from: John Hansen, W2FS 49 Maple Avenue, Fredonia, NY 14063. Payment may be made by personal check or money order. Alternatively, if you have access to the Internet you can place an order electronically using MasterCard or Visa by using PayPal. If you are using Paypal, use the email address:

john@hansen.net.

http://john.hansen.net

This may be particularly convenient for those wishing to place orders from foreign countries. For further information contact:

John Hansen, W2FS at the above address or at john@hansen.net.


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