[aprssig] Kenwood TH-D7 Camera mounting?

Stephen H. Smith wa8lmf2 at aol.com
Sat Aug 9 22:04:18 EDT 2008

Greg D. wrote:
> Hi folks,
> Ok, time to build a D7-mounted GPS.  I have a nice little GPS block (http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=465) that I want to mount on top of the D7, and tie into the D7's AA-based battery pack.  The GPS will need a TTL->RS-232 level shift, and some way to mount it.
> The level shift is planned to use a MAX-232 chip, though there are probably other/easier ways to do it.  I need to mount the GPS block on something, so I figure a little PC board, put the GPS on top, MAX chip, and then figure out some way to stand the thing up on top of the D7.  Which is really the reason for this posting...
> Kenwood has an SSTV camera attachment for the D7, and I figure it mounts somehow on top of the battery belt clip assembly, but I don't have one to look at.  Does anyone have one, and could they describe what the attachment looks like?  My guess is that there are two round posts, maybe a half inch (1 cm) long, and maybe 1 1/8 inch (3cm) apart.  Then maybe some other stuff in between, and some sort of locking mechanism.
> Am I close?
> Thanks,
> Greg  KO6TH
> _

1)     The VC-H1 hand-held SSTV device is not an accessory for the 
TH-D7.  It is an entirely separate device, that works like an external 
speaker-mic. Like all SSTV devices the only connections to the radio are 
RX audio/TX audio/PTT.   SSTV is purely analog audio -- no data 
connections of any kind are involved despite the common reference to it 
as a a "digital mode" like RTTY, PSK31, Packet, etc. 

The VC-H1 can be used with any radio. It connects to the TH-D7 speaker 
and mike jacks with a curly cord mic-type cable terminated in the 
typical double mini plug assembly used by external speaker mics.  Other 
available cables (before the VC-H1 was discontinued) connected it to the 
13-pin full-size DIN jack on Kenwood HF rigs, or the 6-pin MiniDIN 
"data" or "packet" jacks (actually TX audio/RX audio/PTT/Squelch) 
present on many HF and VHF radios.  

With the D700 an especially clumsy forked cable connected it to both the 
D700's min-DIN jack (for TX/RX audio) and to the D700's main serial port 
(for control of VC-H1 functions from the D700's front panel menus.).

The VC-H1 does not mount to the TH-D7 in any way.   Using the two 
together is a clumsy two-handed operation holding the D7 in one hand (or 
clipped to your belt in the normal way) and holding the VC-H1 in the 
other hand.    

By the way, the VC-H1 was discontinued several years when Windows XP 
became the dominant home OS replacing Win95/98. The  unbelievably clunky 
and poorly done supporting software for the VC-H1 wouldn't run in 2K or 
XP, and apparently Kenwood didn't want to go to the expense of 
re-writing the software for this slow-selling specialty product to make 
it run in Windows 2K/XP.     [I run a Win98SE virtual machine on my 
mobile WinXP laptop solely to run this clunker program in support of the 
VC-H1 that is  my "mobile SSTV LiveCAM".

2)     You won't need anything as advanced as a MAX-232 since you are 
only feeding GPS serial data INTO the TH-D7. A simple one-transistor 
inverter (or a 4Nxx opto-isolator) is all you need.  The D7 works 
perfectly well with a 0/5 volt swing instead of a true -8/+8 volt RS-232 
voltage swing.   All you need  is to invert the sense of the TTL  5/0 
volt logic to 0/5 volts. 


Stephen H. Smith    wa8lmf (at) aol.com         [Owner of TWO VC-H1s]
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