Free Custom Skins for all Thetis and OpenHPSDR mRX PS Versions - W1AEX

IMPORTANT INFORMATION BEFORE YOU START:  This project requires a basic understanding of file structure and folder hierarchy. If you are uncomfortable with the thought of navigating through folders and subfolders, then this is not for you. I do not do this for a living and do not provide technical support, so if you decide to try this you are on your own! If you know how to navigate through folders and files with Windows explorer, and know how to unzip files, then I have no doubt that you will enjoy playing around with these display skins. Keep in mind that this project ADDS folders and files to the Thetis and PowerSDR OpenHPSDR mRX PS Skins directory, but it does NOT alter any files that are installed by Thetis or OpenHPSDR mRX.

NOTE: As of 7-3-2021 all the skin and button/slider packs are compatible with all versions of the OpenHPSDR mRX PS and Thetis software. The installation procedure is the same, but the file locations are different as Thetis and OpenHPSDR mRX PS are independent programs. The installation notes below will detail where to find the skin folder for the OpenHPSDR mRX PS and the Thetis software.

A screenshot of the entire AM BCB as viewed in Thetis

In Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10 the path to the OpenHPSDR mRX PS skins folder can be found here:

C:\Users\your windows login account name\AppData\Roaming\FlexRadio Systems\PowerSDR\skins

INSTALLATION NOTES for Thetis: In Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10 the path to the Thetis skins folder can be found here:

C:\Users\your windows login account name\AppData\Roaming\OpenHPSDR\skins
Note that these Thetis - OpenHPSDR mRX PS skin archives have a recursive Console sub-folder inside them. All you have to do is unzip the folder into the skins directory and you are done. Make sure that you shut down Thetis or OpenHPSDR mRX PS before you unzip a new pack as your skin will not be recognized unless the program is restarted. Be aware that if you attempt to install a custom skin, and it does not show up in the list of available skins, or the skin displays incorrectly, the problem is ALWAYS a result of incorrect placement of your custom folder and its Console subfolder. After examining the file and folder structure, if you are still stuck visit the Troubleshooting Page for help.

DISCLAIMER:  With all that being said, if you somehow manage to mess things up, I take no responsibility for any issues that you cause for yourself! If you are brave enough to give it a try you'll see how easy this actually is. The reality is that PowerSDR is so forgiving that it will start up and display an interface even if your selected skin has an empty Console folder! It will be ugly, but just like those "People of Walmart" photos that get passed around, OpenHPSDR doesn't really care how you dress it up. What the heck, it's ham radio! You're supposed to experiment and have fun! It's my hope that someone with more artistic skill and creativity than I have will visit the PowerSDR Skins Tutorial Page and make some beautiful display skins to share with the entire SDR community. If you come up with something great, I'd love to see it. If you have some ideas to share, feel free to contact me. If you would like any of these skins to be included in future software releases, tell the OpenHPSDR mRX authors that they are always welcome to anything that is here!

COMPATIBILITY NOTE: If you see a display skin on my Flex Radio PowerSDR Skins page that you would like to use go ahead and install it. It will come up fine but will be missing several buttons and sliders. To correct this, simply go down to the bottom of this page and download a slider and button pack and unzip those right into the skin's console folder. When you restart Thetis or OpenHPSDR mRX PS all the controls will then display and function correctly.

RANDOM THOUGHTS:  After studying the file structure of the skins in Thetis and OpenHPSDR mRX it was possible to find the elements that were needed to display all the buttons and sliders correctly. Everything displays correctly in all my versions of Thetis and OpenHPSDR mRX with the skins that I have re-compiled and other users have confirmed that it all works correctly for them. As a former Apache Labs ANAN-100 user who is now running a new ANAN-200D, I have to say that I am very happy to have access to the collapsed view that is shown below. There appears to be a lot of very cool functionality with the OpenHPSDR mRX PS version of PowerSDR that I was not aware of until I studied what was under the hood. Note that your meter and frequency displays will be the traditional dark colors rather than the yellow coloring shown in the pictures. I always change them to a yellow background as my eyes seem to like the high contrast it offers. There are instructions for making this change if you are interested in doing so at the bottom of the page at this link:

Collapsed view of the "Thetis Dark" skin available below. This view is a nice feature that is sadly not present in the FLEX version of PowerSDR.

Quick Installation Notes

- I found that OpenHPSDR mRX PS placed its skins files in the "Roaming" folder for my Windows 7 installation. I have been told Windows 8 and 10 use the same path:    

your windows login account name\AppData\Roaming\FlexRadio Systems\PowerSDR\Skins.

- I found that Thetis placed its skins files in the "Roaming" folder for my login account of my Windows 7 installation. I have been told Windows 8 and 10 uses the same path:     

\your windows login account name\AppData\Roaming\OpenHPSDR\skins

- Note that these skin packs should be extracted directly to the Skins directory without manually creating a Console folder.

- If you have trouble seeing a skin pack that you have installed in your list of choices in Thetis or OpenHPSDR mRX PS this is always the result of an incorrect folder hierarchy or incorrect file placement. Check the troubleshooting page for help.

Good luck and 73!

Rob W1AEX   6

NEW!  W2NBC Scope Mesh skin. Careful attention has been paid to contrast so that the menu items, buttons, and sliders show up very clearly. This is easy on the eyes!

Download W2NBC Scope Mesh skin

NEW!  W2NBC Scope Dark Skin (Custom console display, panels, buttons and sliders)

Download W2NBC Scope Dark Skin

W2NBC Oscilloscope Skin (Custom console display, panels, buttons and sliders)

Download W2NBC Oscilloscope Skin

NEW!  W1AEX Thetis Chrome Plus Skin (Featuring W2NBC buttons and control panels)

Download W1AEX Thetis Chrome Plus Skin

NEW!  W1AEX Thetis Gray Skin

Download W1AEX Thetis Gray Skin

NEW!  W1AEX Thetis Lite Skin

Download W1AEX Thetis Lite Skin

  W1AEX Thetis Med Skin

Download W1AEX Thetis Medium Skin

NEW!  W1AEX Thetis Dark Skin

Download W1AEX Thetis Dark Skin

NEW!  W1AEX Camouflage Skin

Download W1AEX Camouflage Skin

The next three skins are an experiment with dressing up the sliders in the GUI. I kind of like them at the moment and have tried them out with most of my skins. If you like the incremented sliders, I added all three of them (Light, Medium, Black) to the slider pack download section. You can download them and install them into any skin where you think they might look good. Mixing and matching slider packs, button packs, and various skins is part of what makes customizing the software fun. You can always unzip the original slider pack right into the Console folder to restore the skin to the original sliders.

W1AEX Light Incremented Skin with new Light Incremented Sliders

Download W1AEX Incremented Light Skin

W1AEX Medium Incremented Skin with new Medium Incremented Sliders

Download W1AEX Incremented Medium Skin

W1AEX Dark Incremented Skin with new Black Incremented Sliders

Download W1AEX Incremented Dark Skin

W1AEX "THETIS" skin for those who want to flaunt life in the Protocol 2 lane! Yeah, Thetis is pretty awesome!

Download W1AEX "THETIS" skin

W1AEX "ANAN 8000DLE" skin

Download W1AEX "ANAN-8000DLE" skin
How to change the VFO and Meter colors

  W1AEX "ANAN 200D" skin

Download W1AEX "ANAN 200D" skin

W1AEX "ANAN Old School" skin

Download W1AEX "ANAN Old School" skin

W1AEX "ANAN New School" skin

Download W1AEX "ANAN New School" skin

 W1AEX "Grilled" skin

Download W1AEX "Grilled" skin

W1AEX "Grilled Lite" skin

Download W1AEX "Grilled Lite" skin

W1AEX "Mesh" skin

Download W1AEX "Mesh" skin

W1AEX "Mesh Light" skin

Download W1AEX "Mesh Light" skin

W1AEX Heathkit Apache TX1/RX1 skin for those who still love the look of Heathkit green

Download W1AEX Heathkit Apache TX-1 display skin

K2GX "World Time Blue" Display Skin

Download K2GX "World Time Blue" Display Skin

K2GX "World Time Green" Display Skin

Download K2GX "World Time Green" skin

K2GX "World Time" Display Skin

Download K2GX "World Time" Skin

K2GX "The Darkness" Display Skin

Download K2GX "The Darkness" skin

K2GX "Superhero" Display Skin

Download K2GX Superhero Skin

K2GX "BW GEM Dark" Display Skin

Download K2GX "BW GEM Dark" skin

K2GX "Brushed Black" Display Skin

Download K2GX "Brushed Black" skin

K2GX "Blue Gem" Display Skin

Download K2GX "Blue Gem" skin

K2GX "Green Metal" Display Skin

Download K2GX "Green Metal" skin

W1AEX "Clarity N" display skin with bright edge-lit buttons that make it easy to focus on what you need to see as you are operating.

The W1AEX "Clarity N" Display Skin with RX2 enabled

Download W1AEX Clarity N Skin

W1AEX "Clarity A" Display Skin

Download W1AEX Clarity A Skin

W1AEX Tektronix 465 Scope Display Skin

Download W1AEX Tektronix 465 Scope Skin
(Note: The Tektronix logo will not display when the second RX is enabled)
View this skin being used on YouTube

W1AEX HPSDR ONE Display Skin

Download W1AEX HPSDR ONE Skin

W1AEX HPSDR TWO Display Skin

Download W1AEX HPSDR TWO Skin

W1AEX SINCGARS Military Transceiver Skin

Download W1AEX SINCGAR Military Transceiver Skin

W1AEX Cosmic Blue National NC-155 Display Skin

Download W1AEX Cosmic Blue National NC-155 Skin

W1AEX Tactical Display Skin

Download W1AEX Tactical Skin

W1AEX Black Wrinkle Display Skin

Download W1AEX Black Wrinkle Skin

W1AEX Heavy Metal Display Skin

Download W1AEX Heavy Metal Skin

W1AEX HPSDR Collins Replica Display Skin

Download W1AEX Collins Replica Skin
(Note: The Collins emblem in the lower left corner of the expanded view will be covered by various elements of the functional overlay if not sized to give it space.)

For those who are feeling adventurous and creative!

The button and slider packs in the links below include all the components used in Thetis, OpenHPSDR mRX PS, and the FLEX version of PowerSDR. These can be unzipped into any skin on my Flex and OpenHPSDR mRX PS - Thetis download pages and all the buttons and sliders should display correctly. Simply choose the button or slider pack that looks best with any skin and unzip it into the console directory for the skin you wish to apply the new components to. Take a look at the "Short Story About Creating Your Own Skins" narrative under the Button and Slider links down below and then feel free to mix and match any sliders and buttons with any skin to customize your displayed skin!











The Short Story About Creating your own skins for Thetis, OpenHPSDR mRX PS and PowerSDR - W1AEX

Here's the short story about how incredibly easy it is to create your own custom skin for PowerSDR. All you need is one of the button packs and one of the slider packs from above. Seriously, that's all you need to create a functional skin that will work fine. Take a look at the screenshot below of what happens when you unzip the and files into a correctly placed "Console" directory inside of the PowerSDR Skins folder hierarchy:

Buttons and Sliders Only! Look Ma, no console! This skin will work fine, but it uses whatever default texture windows inserts into the graphics.

Here's what happens if you add a file called "Console.png" to fill in the main body of the interface:    Buttons + sliders + one file called Console.png

Finally, this is what it looks like when you insert a file called "PicDisplay.png" which fills in the area behind the panadapter grid:


So... that's pretty much all there is to it. There actually are nine other files that are involved in the event you wish to add additional texture effects in various places of the interface, but they are not essential. If you are interested in all the details take a look at the full PowerSDR tutorial. There is one VERY IMPORTANT CAVEAT about playing around with these skins. It would be a violation of copyright laws if you took any skin provided by the Flex Radio Corporation and then modified it and distributed it. These include, but are not limited to, any skin that begins with "IK3VIG" and "Beppe" or even the Default series of skins for PowerSDR. Flex has specifically listed its skins as copyright protected, so please respect that. You are welcome to take any of the graphic components (buttons, sliders, consoles) or complete skins that I have created and do whatever you like with them, but be very careful with the copyright protected materials provided by others in PowerSDR or OpenHPSDR. One other thing, if you make something really nice, be sure to share it with the SDR community!

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