The Yaesu FTDX-1200 requires the use of two (2) interface connections to the computer. A Rig Control interface is required to enable you to control the radio’s functions from the computer. If you plan on using DM-780 for the digital modes, a soundcard interface is also required in order to provide a path for the digital audio between the computer and the transmitter.
There are several interface possibilities for the FTDX-1200. This document deals with setting up the FTDX-1200 with the popular SCU-17, all-in-one interface, from Yaesu. The SCU-17 provides both Rig Control functions via the RS-232 (CAT) port on the radio and an audio interface, using the soundcard built into the SCU-17, via a “USB Audio CODEC”, connected to the “RTTY/DATA” plug on the back of the radio.
Regardless of what interface you use, these instructions will provide the information needed to get your FTDX-1200 connected to your computer and the Ham Radio Deluxe software.
Read The Fine Manual
Before connecting any cables from the radio or interface to the computer, be sure you have read your radio and interface manuals and understand the proper way of making all connections. Many times we get support requests because operators did not read the information provided in their manuals and have connected cables incorrectly, used the wrong type of cable or have allowed Windows to install a generic driver for an interface, which could cause connection issues.
When devices are connected to a computer via direct USB connections, Windows, in most cases, will automatically install a "generic" USB driver and use that to create a Virtual USB Com Port used to communicate with the device.
In many cases these generic drivers will work just fine, however under some circumstances this might not be the case. Many device manufacturers license drivers, such as from Silicone Labs and FTDI, for use in their products. They then take the "stock" drivers and modify them or tweak settings so the driver functions properly with their device. This is true mainly in the Amateur Radio Industry.
Most devices that use the modified USB drivers with their equipment will have a warning in their manuals that says "DO NOT CONNECT THE USB CABLE UNTIL AFTER THE DRIVER HAS BEEN INSTALLED".
It’s very important to ensure that you have the proper drivers, for your interface, installed prior to connecting the computer to the interface Ensure that you have installed the correct driver for your operating system (32 bit or 64 bit).
If you’re not sure what drivers you need for your installation, contact the device manufacturer or check their website for information. If you are still unable to locate the proper drivers or information, please don’t hesitate to contact HRD support either by phone or by opening an on-line support ticket from our website (HamRadioDeluxe.com)
Installing the SCU-17 Drivers
To download the Yaesu SCU-17 Drivers, click on the following link or copy and paste it into the “address field” of your favorite web browser.
When you have arrived on the Yaesu website, look for the filename “ FTDX1200/ SCU-17 USB Driver (Virtual COM Port Driver) “ and click on the file to download and save it on your computer.
Once downloaded, run the file to install the drivers for your SCU-17.
The driver is downloaded in a “ZIP” compressed file. You will have to “unzip” the installation file. Once unzipped, you will see two options for install depending on the windows you are running
If you are using a 32 bit version of Windows, select the CP210xVCPInstaller_x86.exe. For a 64 Bit Windows systems use CP210xVCPInstaller_x64.exe
Once the SCU-17 drivers are installed, connect a “straight through” serial cable from the DB-9 connection on the SCU-17 to the DB-9 CAT connection on the FTDX-1200 (Red Arrow). Also, connect the data cable from the data plug on the SCU-17 to the RTTY/DATA plug on the back of the radio (Green Arrow).
Before connecting the USB cable from the SCU-17 to the computer you might want to consider this. We have found the USB cable that comes with the SCU-17 is very susceptible to RFI. We suggest you replace this cable with a better quality cable. One cable we recommend is the Tripp Lite USB 2.0 Hi-Speed A/B Cable with Ferrite Chokes (M/M) 6-ft. (U023-006) which can be purchased for about $6.00 from Amazon.com.
You can now connect the SCU-17 to the computer using the proper USB type A/B cable.
After you have connected the SCU-17 to the USB port on the computer, open your Windows Control panel and select the “Device Manager” app.
In the Device Manager, double-click on the “Ports (Com & LPT) (#1). If the USB drivers have installed correctly you will see TWO Silicon Labs USB ports as shown above. The ports should be numbered consecutively as shown above, (#2) one of which is shown as an “Enhanced” port and the other is a “Standard” port. Make a note of these ports as you will need the port numbers when you configure the HRD Rig Connect dialog.
If you have more than one pair of Silicon Labs Com Ports in your Device Manager, you can identify the ports connected to the SCU-17 simply by disconnecting the USB cable that runs to the SCU-17 from the computer. The pair of ports used will disappear from the list. When you plug the USB cable back in, the ports will reappear.
Note: If you find the ports for the SCU-17 do not appear in the Ports (COM & LPT) hive of the Device Manager, or they show up but have a yellow triangle with an exclamation point, this is an indication the drivers did not install correctly. If this happens, DO NOT contact HRD Support. Contact Yaesu Technical Support for assistance getting the drivers installed properly.
When you’re sure the ports are installed correctly, we need to check menu settings in the radio to ensure they are configured correctly in order to connect with the HRD software.
Open the radio’s menu options and check the menus listed below.
Menu #39 is the CAT baud rate. By default it is set to 4800 bps. Menu #40, the CAT Time Out Timer, is set for 10 milliseconds and menu #41, CAT RTS is “Enabled”.
The default settings for these menu options will work just fine in most cases. Once connected to HRD, if you notice any sluggishness in the Rig Control functions, you could increase the baud rate in Menu 39, however, the default settings should work with no problems.
At this point, if you haven’t already done so, download, install and activate the Ham Radio Deluxe software.
Once the activation is accepted, click the “Continue” button on the bottom of the HRD License Manager and you will be presented with the “HRD Rig Connect Screen”.
In the Rig Connect screen, configure the “Company” (Yaesu), and the radio (FTDX-1200).
The SCU-17 uses the “Enhanced” Com port for Rig Control, so select that port (Com3 in this case) in the Com Port field.
Configure the default Com port baud rate (4800) in the “Speed” field
Place a check in the “RTS” box for the Flow Control.
If you check the “RTS” option after you set your “Speed” you want to check because the speed will change and will have to be reset, so double check all your settings before you click on the “Connect” button.
When your satisfied that all settings are correct in the Rig Control Connect screen, click the [Connect] button. If all is configured correctly the next screen will be the Rig Control screen. This is where the functions of the FTDX-12oo are controlled from the computer screen.