[chirp_users] CHIRP on Mac mini M1

Kerry Whittle t2ckerry at gmail.com
Sun Sep 12 17:19:39 PDT 2021

Yes! We got it! I was hesitant to load x86 drivers on the m1 but once I searched the product id 0x7523 and vendor id 0x1a86, I found an old driver for the Winchiphead chipset at https://blog.sengotta.net/signed-mac-os-driver-for-winchiphead-ch340-serial-bridge/

Thanks for the help guys!

Kerry de KK4JO

> On Sep 12, 2021, at 3:49 PM, Scott Lopez <scottjl at gmail.com> wrote:
> What matters is the chipset in the USB cable, it's actually a USB to serial. Most cables are made with a chip from one of two manufacturers:
> Future Technologies (FTDI) - https://ftdichip.com/drivers/ <https://ftdichip.com/drivers/>
> Prolific Technology - http://www.prolific.com.tw/us/ShowProduct.aspx?pcid=41&showlevel=0041-0041 <http://www.prolific.com.tw/us/ShowProduct.aspx?pcid=41&showlevel=0041-0041>
> MacOS does come with default drivers for some of the chips from these manufactures, but they aren't always the most up-to-date. The easiest way to find out what chipset you're using is to use the System Information application (located in /Applications/Utilities). Open the app, look at Hardware > USB and then look for your cable. Look for an item that says something about serial or UART. Or unplug and replug the cable, pressing Command-R each time and look for something that disappears and shows up. Once you find the right item, you can select it and get more info, under vendor ID you should see either Prolific or Future. You should be able to figure out the chipset from the item name itself, for example one of my cables identifies as "FT232R USB UART" which tells me it's a Future Technologies chipset and needs the 232 drivers. Another cable I have identifies as "USB-Serial Controller" with a vendor ID of Prolific. Looking at the Product ID I see it's "2303" which happens to be a chipset from Prolific looking at their website. There's only one MacOS driver available, so that's the one to use. Pretty much 99% of these cheap $10 cables are going to use one chipset or the other and not something very rare. I haven't seen any cables that are USB-C yet, these are all USB-A, so I need to use them with an adapter or hub with USB-A ports for my MacBook Air M1. Even though the drivers aren't ARM native, they seem to work just fine in my experience.
> You will also have to do some guesswork when selecting the port in CHIRP itself. On the MacOS version the drop-down list for port will show things like /dev/cu.somethingsomething. Look for one that says "usbserial" or the like. If you can't find it, again it might be useful to try unplugging and replugging just the cable, and restarting CHIRP and look for an entry that disappears and shows up on the list. Remember what you select, as it should be called the same thing in the future.
> It won't hurt to install drivers from both manufactures, they'll just be sitting around unused if you don't plug a cable with that chip in, so if you're really stuck, install both. If you're still at a loss, then get another cheap cable from Amazon, look for one that says FTDI or Prolific chipset.
> Also important, do make sure the cable is plugged in all the way to your radio, some of my radios require more pressure to push it in fully. Set the radio to an unused frequency and set the volume to 70% or so.
> I have no problems programming all of my radios with CHIRP on MacOS (Intel or M1) or Windows 10 following these general guidelines.
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