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K4 High Performance Direct Sampling SDR Software

 Current K4 Production Software

K4 Production Software (Release 35)  March 7, 2024

K4 Production Software - General Information
  • K4 software updates are handled at the radio itself.  An ethernet connection is required to obtain new software. It is also possible to load (or re-load) software from a USB flash drive. For further information on that topic, please refer to the K4 Operating Manual.
  • The K4 provides new features via software. As a result, you should consider the Release Notes as an extension of the Owners Manual. Documentation for the new features will be found there and will not appear in the Owner’s Manual until the next manual revision is released.
  • K4 production software release notes appear below, followed by release notes for the present beta release.
Current K4 Production Software Release Notes 

====================== R35 (PRODUCTION) ====================

March 7, 2024


This release accommodates minor changes made by the manufacturer of the K4's LCD. It is otherwise identical to R34.

Current users of R34 (beta or production) do not need to load R35, but doing so is OK and will have no impact on operation.


  • See K4 Software Release Notes for complete revision history.


    K4 BETA Software Release Notes


    ====================== R36.BETA2 =====================

    May 3, 2024

    ***** K4 REMOTE NOW AVAILABLE *****


    - NON-FT RADIOS UNABLE TO DO REMOTE CONNECTION: In rev R36.BETA1, one of the Remote host commands ("RRT;") was blocked for non-FT radios.


    - REMOTE SETTINGS BUTTON ADDED TO LCD: There's a new button ("globe" icon) in the lower left-hand corner of the LCD, next to the "?" (INFO) button. Tap this to access the client or server settings screens. Refer to the REMOTE feature details below, and the REMOTE section of the manual, for details on client and server setup.

    - REMOTE FRONT PANEL EMULATION (AKA "REMOTE"): The new Remote feature allows you to easily control a K4 transceiver anywhere in the world over the Internet. The K4 can act as either a client or server, and no additional hardware or interface devices are required beyond a router at each end. Additional client devices and software are in development, including our K4/0 remote front panel unit, VK4 Windows application, and a third-party iOS app. (Additional client software applications may be developed in the future, thanks to the K4's large host command set and streaming capability.)

    - REMOTE FRONT PANEL EMULATION DOCUMENTATION: The latest K4 operating manual includes a comprehensive section on setting up Remote. Please read this section carefully if you plan to use your K4 as a Remote server or client. To get to the REMOTE section, start at the Table of Contents (under "III. Operation"), then click on REMOTE near the bottom of the list.

    - "TX MONITOR LEVEL, REMOTE" MENU ENTRY: This menu entry sets Remote TX monitor audio level *only* for CW M1..M4 message play and FSK/PSK tones. It does not affect normal paddle-sent CW sidetone in Remote, which is regenerated locally at the client K4.

    - "RX AUDIO GAIN BOOST" MENU ENTRY: This menu entry allows users who prefer high overall audio output to specify up to 6 dB of additional gain. NOTE: The default setting (0 dB) is generally recommended. Higher settings should be used only if the maximum AF GAIN setting is not adequate for the operator. (The max of 6 dB is intended to reduce the possibility of AF-stage clipping on strong signals.)

    - AGC THRESHOLD can now be set to values 2 and 3. These lower thresholds may be useful for those who prefer more aggressive AGC on weaker signals, such as on quiet bands or with preamps OFF.

    - DIVERSITY-ON BUG FIX: When diversity is turned on, we no longer copy preamp, attenuator, or RF gain settings from VFO A to VFO B. This was creating extra work for operators, especially on 160 m. (Also applies on band change with diversity already ON.)

    - FSK TRANSMIT BANDWIDTH NOW MUCH NARROWER: Now using controlled sigmoidal tone-shift method to greatly reduce FSK TX bandwidth.


    === K-POD COMMANDS ===

    - K-POD LED AND AUX COMMANDS IMPLEMENTED: These include KPLEDROFF/ON, KPLED1OFF/ON...KPLED4OFF/ON, and KPOUT1OFF/ON..KPOUT3OFF/ON. Note that because the 4th LED is not used by the KPOD, it can be turned on and off without sending the KPod the "KPLEDROFF" command.


    Basic server K4 setup is now done via the server setup screen, including password and max connected clients. But you may still wish to use commands from the list below to remotely switch between releases and update your K4's software.

    RLP; Select Production version
    RLX; Select Prior Production version
    RLB; Select Beta version
    RLF; Select Field Test version
    (RLN; Select Nightly version; developer-enabled K4s only)

    RL; Returns currently selected release (RRP; RRF; etc.)

    PS88; Update currently-selected release to latest

    PS89; While connected to a server, update the firmware on the server to the currently selected release on the server.

    RRThost:port?password; Connect client to server (host is IP address or hostname of the server)
    RRN; Disconnect
    RRPmypassword -- set Password
    RRP; - display current Password

    CC; ClientConnectedCount: Returns -1 you are a client, if 0 if no clients connected, any other number is indicates how many clients are connected

    RS; query Remote Set state.
    RS1; enables remote set. This only affects commands that are client-only such as MLxnnn; Full list TBD.
    RS0; disable remote set
    RS/; - Toggle between RS0; and RS1; mode




    - FREQUENCY MEMORIES: The current implementation saves quick memory (and GP memory) data on the client radio for each individual server to which you connect, based on the target radio's serial number. It creates a different freqMemory in a sub-directory for each remote K4 to which you connect. So, if you connect to a server first, then reprogram all the per-band quick memories, they will be stored and usable on the client while connected. They do not change any other quick memory, including the clients "normal, unconnected" memories. Then you can use them on the client. This behavior is unexpected and may change in the future.

    - TX / MAIN RX / SUB RX functions: During Remote operation, these usually apply to the SERVER radio. In the future an asterisk (*) will be added to all functions that apply to the server.

    - LOGGING CONSIDERATIONS FOR REMOTE CONTACTS: Be careful logging contacts when switching between local and remote. Your radio has the same LAN IP address and COM port numbers whether operating locally or connected to a remote server. Your logger can't tell the difference but your logs need to document the actual locations of the active radios.

    See K4 Beta Software Release Notes for revision updates.


    K4 Production BETA Software Installation Procedures

    To install the beta software, make sure you have an ethernet connection, then:

    1. Tap Fn, then hold UPDATE

    2. Use the pulldown menu at the top of the screen to select Beta Release (if you didn't have this selected already).

    3. Tap Check for Updates. This downloads the new code but does not do the installation. This gives you an opportunity to optionally tap "Release Notes" and read the notes first.

    4. When you're ready to do the installation, tap "Install".

    NOTE: If the status area shows error messages of any kind, try doing the install a second time. You may have had an older version of the update app itself, in which case a second install should complete the process.