Compare USB-RTS01 and RT-42 Cables

Modified on Thu, Mar 16, 2023 at 3:38 PM

The several radios can use the USB-RTS01 from RT Systems or the RT-42 (USB-A to USB-B) cable for programming and control. This comparison will help you decide between the two cables.
USB-RTS01The USB-RTS01 cable works through the CI-V port on the back of the radio. CAT commands for radio control and programming commands are passed through this port.

This cable is based on an FTDI chipset and uses the RT Systems USB drivers. It works well with other applications (control, logging, and others that work through the CAT commands). It is a good choice to help avoid a driver conflict with other devices connected to the same computer.

This cable is comparable to the Icom CT-17 cable for one radio connection. Although it carries a 3.5mm stereo plug at the radio end, that plug is wired as mono to properly address the radio.

RT-42The RT-42 is a USB-A to USB-B cable that connects to the USB port on the back of the radio. Drivers from Silicon Labs associated with the USB electronics built into the radio will be loaded when this cable is used.

Realize that many devices use the Silicon Labs drivers. In the radio world, Kenwood, Icom and Yaesu all use these drivers. This can result in conflicts between devices if you have several things connected to your computer at the same time.

As long as no conflict exists, this cable has the advantage that 1) it is readily available from department or office supply stores. You may even have an extra on hand as it is often used to connect a printer to the computer. 2) On some radios, more advanced commands are handled through the USB port. So you will get more from your radio through this cable connection.

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