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Old 28-02-2014, 16:41   #1
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can't get any sound out of SSB

Hello I've inherited this SGC power talk SSB radio, it fires up and the LED display looks like it's receiving a signal but I can't hear any sound what so ever. In my previous life I was a recording engineer so I know I should be able to work out how to make it work but so far nothing. Please don't say read the manual, I got to page 60 before it told me how to turn it on, the manual just makes no sense to me, it might as well be written in chinese for all the good it's done. Is there an SSB for dummies. If you have one of these babies I would love to hear where the mute button is, it can't be this difficult surely
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Old 28-02-2014, 16:48   #2
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Maybe it doesn't have an internal speaker. try an external speaker. Try this for some info.
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Old 28-02-2014, 17:01   #3
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

It's got an external speaker
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Old 28-02-2014, 17:03   #4
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Already looked at that El Rubio
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Old 28-02-2014, 17:10   #5
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

I had one in about '97, but it's been toooo long! Blown speaker?is there an ext speaker outlet you could test from? headphone jack?
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Old 28-02-2014, 17:36   #6
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Is the Mic plugged in? My Icon needs the mic plugged in to enable sound from the internal speaker.

Regards

PS I keep a couple ATR-100s in my garage.
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Old 01-03-2014, 09:16   #7
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Hi evm1024, yes the mic is plugged in an d appears to show transmitting when I press the button
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Old 01-03-2014, 09:32   #8
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

If the external speaker is hooked up through a plug/jack, try plugging/unplugging it a few times to kinda clean the contacts. I have to do that with one of my VHF radios... LL
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Old 01-03-2014, 11:26   #9
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

In my years as a consumer electronics tech, I repaired lots of input and output jack connections on circuit boards. The solder connections are the only thing holding the jack in place on a lot of equipment.
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Old 01-03-2014, 13:32   #10
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Quote:
Originally Posted by senormechanico View Post
In my years as a consumer electronics tech, I repaired lots of input and output jack connections on circuit boards. The solder connections are the only thing holding the jack in place on a lot of equipment.
yeah, board mounted jacks, pots etc seem to be the bane of that technology.
OP: Did the headphone jack work with headphones?
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Old 01-03-2014, 13:45   #11
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Have you made sure the squelch isn't all the way up? Sorry if it's the obvious, but sometimes we overlook the simplest things.
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Old 01-03-2014, 13:57   #12
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Dear Shantycrew,
I think we'll be able to get this figured out....

1) First off some info/news for 'ya....
I understand that you inherited it, so we've got to deal with what we have...
That SG-2000/Power-Talk is getting a bit long-in-the-tooth....probably about 15 - 20 yrs old...and to be honest it wasn't the greatest even when new..
(understand that I was a fan of SGC in the old days...had an SGC "Intercontinental One" on-board in the 70's...but their SG-2000 just wasn't up to their old standards...)



2) Now, onto the problem...
Quote:
Originally Posted by shantycrew View Post
it fires up and the LED display looks like it's receiving a signal but I can't hear any sound what so ever.
Assuming that you've got even a short piece of wire stuck in the antenna jack and you're trying to hear something on freqs below 10 - 15mhz, you should be hearing a decent amount of noise/static!!
So, while this could be almost anything, the most common of these things (and some tests/solutions), would be:

a) blown speaker (try another known good speaker and/or headphones)
b) bad speaker wiring and/or speaker jack contacts (check with ohm meter and clean all contacts)
c) radio "speaker switch" turned OFF (turn ON) {"mute" On, turn "mute" Off}
d) radio squelch turned on, and/or all the way up (check squelch setting and/or switch OFF)
e) radio RF Gain turned all the way down (check RF Gain setting and turn all the way UP)
f) badly misadjusted audio settings....the SG-2000/PowerTalk was an audio-DSP radio, and if you've got the old funky audio DSP settings out-of-whack, it's possible that you'd not hear anything!!! (I'm sorry Shantycrew, but here I must write READ THE FRIGGIN MANUAL....and/or set all the audio DSP controls / "filter" controls to the middle of their range just for this testing, and then READ THE FRIGGIN MANUAL!)
g) blown radio audio amp (try headphones on headphone jack, as typically they are not driven by the main audio amp.....or if you have access to an o'scope use that!!)

Please note that any/all of the above can be dealt with on-board...even a blown audio amp, as you can still use the radio with headphones and/or input the audio thru a stereo or laptop, etc...
(EVERY HF Radio station, on-board or on-shore, marine or ham, should have headphones, as it makes using the radio MUCH easier/nicer, especially with weak signals and/or a noisy band!!!)

Oh, and a field repair can be made of a blown audio amp, as you can salvage an audio IC from just about any old radio or car stereo, etc. and make it work....



3) If all of those ideas/tests prove to be non-productive, then the problem is certainly inside the radio and significantly more serious....and the chances of you finding anyone in the DR that could even attempt to troubleshoot / repair is VERY slim...
And, even if you did find someone there, or here in the states, the troubleshooting /minor repair costs alone would be a couple hundred dollars....and maybe more...

But, still don't give up yet!



4) You write that it seems to be receiving something and also that it seems to transmit...
Quote:
Originally Posted by shantycrew View Post
it fires up and the LED display looks like it's receiving a signal but I can't hear any sound what so ever
Quote:
Originally Posted by shantycrew View Post
the mic is plugged in an d appears to show transmitting when I press the button
So, PLEASE don't give up on the manual yet!!!
Read the manual along with what I write here and you might find some useful results!!!

a) For a "receiving test" try tuning in a local AM broadcast station that is loud and clear on any AM radio nearby, and see if the SG-2000/PowerTalk's receive S-meter deflects upward....and then goes back down when you tune away and goes down to near zero when selecting a high HF frequency such as 22mhz....
If this does happen, then you are correct that the radio IS receiving, but just no audio output...
If this does not happen, then this is a indication of a serious internal radio fault/component failure (meaning $$$$)


b) For a "transmitting test", have a boat near you (within a few hundred yards) listen to a marine HF freq, say 8294.0khz or 4146.0khz, and tune your SG-2000/PowerTalk to whichever frequency you've agreed on...
(use you marine VHF radios to coordinate this)
Select USB (Upper Side-Band), and then press the microphone Push-to-Talk button, and speak clearly at a normal conversational volume level, with the microphone only about 1" away from your mouth....
Say "This is Sailing Vessel Shanty, testing."....ask your neighboring boater who is listening on his HF radio, what he is hearing / what he heard...

If he heard you loud 'n clear, then your radio is transmitting okay, and this eliminates most of the most serious issues from being a possibility...
If he hears you garbled / distorted / etc. (or if he doesn't hear you at all) then there are mostly internal problems with the radio (meaning $$$$)


c) If the receiving test ("4a" above) doesn't work and/or if your "transmitting test" doesn't work / he does not hear you....then chances are your SG-2000/PowerTalk has serious/major issues and unless you absolutely needed that exact radio to be repaired, very few would recommend that you spend any time/money doing so...
Simply time to buy a new radio (at $1800, or so)....or a used one (at $500 - $1000)....




5) As for an SSB for Dummies...yes, there are a few books that do explain things pretty well...but..
Quote:
Originally Posted by shantycrew View Post
Is there an SSB for dummies.
But, your best approach is going to be:
a) On-line / YouTube Videos, explaining Marine HF SSB Radio...
Here is a link to my Marine SSB videos...
captainjohn49 - YouTube

Videos #1, and #2 are designed to show the basic operations of the Icom M-802, but some of the buttons / controls are common to all radios, so watching them should be very helpful...

Videos #4, #5, #6, #9, and #10 apply to all HF radios / SSB Radios..and should be very helpful to you...

Even Video #7, might be of some help...

If you have an internet connection, watch them, and ask me some more questions here...



b) That crappy SGC manual...using the manual along with what I've written here, and after you watched the videos, might get you over the learning curve!!


c) A local ham and/or experienced cruiser, that can come on-board and have a "look see"...




I hope this helps...


Fair winds.

John
s/v Annie Laurie


P.S. My Icom M-802 specific discussion, and videos, were made a "sticky" here on Cruiser's Forum...
Icom M-802 Instr Videos(basic-adv) & LIVE DSC-Distress Call
But since your problem is with an SG-2000/PowerTalk, it's best to keep this discussion/thread going here...
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Old 03-03-2014, 11:54   #13
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Well hello, and thanks John for all of that info. I have now got it making some noise but not because I followed your trouble shooting stuff. I took it off the bulkhead to have a look behind it and found a mini jack socket which I plugged the speaker into and guess what it made a lot of static type noise, very loudly, so I turned the volume knob down. I don't know why the previous owner had unplugged it, the wire was hanging from the speaker and just reached the mini jack on the front of the speaker, so I tried plugging it into there. When I took the unit off the bulkhead I could see that this wire, tucked away behind the unit and ti-wrapped up was actually coming from the speaker so I looked at the SGC and found the outlet in the back on the side nearest the speaker. I figured this might be the missing link and it was. I should have known it would be something simple, but as a sound engineer I go for complicated first.
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Old 03-03-2014, 13:39   #14
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

Shantycrew,
Well, you're welcome and I'm glad you got it working...
Quote:
Originally Posted by shantycrew View Post
Well hello, and thanks John for all of that info. I have now got it making some noise but not because I followed your trouble shooting stuff. I took it off the bulkhead to have a look behind it and found a mini jack socket which I plugged the speaker into and guess what it made a lot of static type noise, very loudly, so I turned the volume knob down.
But, if I had known that you did NOT actually check the speaker, as you told El Rubio that you did just minutes after his posting asking about the speaker and connections, as well as Cheekako's and evm's suggestions/comments about the speaker, connections, headphones, etc. as well as Afterhour's and Senormechanico's further comments/suggestions about speakers, speaker jacks, connections, etc.
I would not have bothered to spend my time laying out the details for you...





BTW, not sure about sound engineering...but in the world of RF Engineering we always go for the easiest / least complicated first...



Fair winds...

John
s/v Annie Laurie
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Old 04-03-2014, 13:37   #15
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Re: can't get any sound out of SSB

I know, I know, but honestly the way it had been installed it looked like it was all connected up. I have tried to get it working today and although we have what looks like a signal all i'm getting is a motor boating sound from the speaker. Will check out your videos John, and once again my humble apologies for being so dumb.
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