The test batch of Digirig Mobile is all sold out and enjoying high grades from early adopters. The next chapter is the first high(ish) volume production run featuring revision 1.5. I’m really happy with the way things turned out and the whole process went really smooth despite the potential for trouble at every corner. Now let’s take a look at the new revision, the changes and improvements…
Same form factor and enclosure
The new revision rocks the same robust aluminum extrusion enclosure roughly the size of 9V battery. There was a minor adjustment to the engraving, to tone things down a bit.
Same rig side connections and pinouts
You can re-use the cables you built for previous revision with the new one. On the rig side there are still two 3.5mm TRS connectors for audio and CAT, though now CAT socket can be reconfigured for alternative functions. More on that below.
USB Type-C computer side connection
By popular and very vocal demand Digirig is now a USB Type-C gizmo. Yes, I know… you were right all along: Type-C is the way of the future, it’s more robust, it minimizes the agony by being symmetrical. I guess I just had too many Micro-B cables around and wanted to use them for something. Also, coming soon to Digirig Store near you are coiled and shielded Digirig-branded USB Type-A to Type-C cables.
Hardware PTT/CW controls
Another frequently requested feature is an option to drive PTT and/or CW lines with serial interface signals. Digirig mobile now has solder jumpers to switch CAT port lines from 3.3V TTL serial lines TxD and RxD (default) to non-inverting open-collector drivers controlled by RTS and DTR lines of COM port. This opens a reliable interfacing opportunities to pretty much any transceiver including those not supporting any form of CAT interface. That includes HTs.
RTS driven PTT is not as nice as full featured CAT, but it’s definitely beats VOX. Here is the example of WSJT-X setting for PTT control via RTS/DTR:
With this addition, I can now experiment with APRS and Winlink over VHF/UHF using a disposable HTs. Y’all know the brand I’m talking about. Stand by for the detailed report on that.
Another option with the solder jumpers is converting Digirig’s duplex serial interface to CI-V with the addition of a single diode. This topic is also worth a separate post and I look forward to trying it out once I find a willing owner of CI-V enabled I-COM rig.
Access to additional codec lines
Inside of Digirig Mobile there is an audio codec CM108AH which is a popular choice for homebrew Allstar node builds. The numerous projects posted online however require soldering wires to the IC’s leads which is quite an exercise in dexterity considering its 0.5mm pitch and density of the surrounding elements. For those looking for a simpler Allstar node build, the new Digirig offers all required codec connections as convenient through-hole points.
The early adopters who took their chance on the Digirig’s tester batch, helping its further development and production, got the first dibs on the new revision with a discount compliments of the chef. Now this new revision is publicly available with ample inventory. If past performance is any indication, this stock should last for at least few months; that is if Digirig avoids getting on the radar of hobby’s influencers’ or publications. If that happens, then I’ll have a high quality problem on my hands.
Anyway, I’ll work on updating the product listing with new photos and additional information, but all orders from now on are revision 1.5. Have at it, have great time on the air and stay tuned for more updates!