The great FT8 debate

 

In his blog Dominic Smith M0BLF gives his take on the great FT8 debate

Since its introduction a year ago FT8 has transformed amateur radio, enabling amateurs living in high-noise environments to make contacts that would have been impossible using traditional modes. Continue reading

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WSJT-X Version 1.9.0

The WSJT Development Group is pleased to announce a Release Candidate of WSJT-X Version 1.9.0. This is a second beta release, so it’s called v1.9.0-rc2. A first candidate release, v1.9.0-rc1, has already been tested in the field by a small test group. A General Availability (GA) release of v1.9.0 will be announced at a suitable time in the near future. After that time you should no longer use any -rc# candidate. Continue reading

I’m glad to see they were having fun with FT8 but…..

With Club log reporting that more then 1/2 of today’s contacts are made by FT8 (Feb 2018) I’m wondering how many out there understand this is a low power mode. As you can see by Randy’s latest video they don’t seem to follow the steps below, but their having fun and maybe that’s what it’s all about. Maybe I’m missing something, should you really crank it to 100 watts to make a contact?? Continue reading

FT-8, the new HF/6m digital mode, introduction for beginners

Here is a new digital mode that comes to you from the makers of JT-9 and JT-65.. Called FT-8 (Franke-Taylor design, 8FSK modulation)

A weak signal mode that is not as sensitive to JT-65/9 but definitely something that will work when voice and CW will not. This is an introduction to someone who has never heard of it, or never has used JT-65 before. It may not be for everyone, but everyone should try it. Continue reading

My Digital Weekend

 

January hasn’t been to kind to me.  I have been plagued with this stomach flu going around and I just can’t seem to get over it.  Radio has just taken a back seat.  From the propagation reports either off the Internet or talking to other local hams they said conditions were bad and I wasn’t missing much. Continue reading

SIM31 For The Digital Folks Out There

I discovered a relatively new mode last week.  It’s called SIM 31.  It’s an extension of PSK but I kinda look at as a cross between PSK and JT65.  With Sim31 and its preselected macros you can set it to auto pilot and let it do its thing.  It will answer a CQ call do two rounds and sign off.   There’s also a manual key where you can start typing just like in PSK. You also don’t need to worry about language barriers as you select which language you wish to use and translations are done for you.  The software is free and the setup is rather painless. Continue reading