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red_dog007

HAM Radio

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So, anyone into HAM as well?

I got my license 3yrs ago.  Never really got into it.  Though starting to get back into it a little bit.  I only have a handheld. A Yaesu FT-60R w/ the GMRS/MURS TX mod.  Been looking at getting a mobile unit and police scanner as well.  

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10 minutes ago, joshnys8913 said:

This topic is not relevant to Sprint at all.... While there are one or two other people on here who are, it's pretty irrelevant (I am myself am too but I got out of the hobby, it's dying even though the FCC said a couple of years ago they have issued a record number of licences in recent years.... It surely does NOT show in my opinion and experience). 

So what it is not Sprint relevant? It doesn't need too. 😑

 

I posted in General Discussion where it says:

Have something on your mind? Doesn't fit with any other category? Post about it here. Off-topic threads are OK.

 

Figured with some people serious into cellular, might be some HAMs or even non HAMs (like GMRS, CB, etc). 

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Great topic 👌 would like to explore this more myself and began reading albeit very little yet, about ham history and such. I'm heavily invested in cellular for my parameters currently, this is a great place to get started smoothing that out.

Thank you for posting.

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There's several of us hams in the ranks 🐖

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Very very interested in HAM, CB, radio astronomy, and Sat phones. I've wanted to get a license for a few years but I struggle finding an organization doing the test, as well as the time to study and take the test.

Thanks for starting this thread

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11 minutes ago, xdfgf said:

Very very interested in HAM, CB, radio astronomy, and Sat phones. I've wanted to get a license for a few years but I struggle finding an organization doing the test, as well as the time to study and take the test.

Thanks for starting this thread

http://www.bluegrassars.org/

They might know of some other local clubs you can see about when they have tests.  

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Never tried HAM, but the mention of CB takes me back, plus makes me cringe in hindsight.  Back in late gradeschool through much of my middle school years, I got into CB, because my folks had bought a used car with a cheaper model Cobra mobile unit (also Smoky & the Bandit, Convoy and the like probably helped spur that on a bit as well) .  Looking back, in a sense those days were my geek infancy to social networking, before I graduated to dial-up single line BBS'es, to multi-line BBS (shout out for Sounds of Silence, for anyone from/near Nashville back in the day), and Q-Link after that, before Al Gore finally invented the internet *cough*.... 

Anyway, the reason for the hindsight cringe:  I got so hooked on CB'ing that I sold whatever I could in yard sales at the time so I could save up for a semi-decent base station setup.  So being someone who was born in 70 and naturally was a kid square in the midst of the Star Wars craze, I over time had a decent (for a kid of rural based family with lower middle class roots/money) collection of classic Kenner toys - including both TIE's, the X-Wing, and my prized possession:  the Millennium Falcon herself.  I never cared near as much about Jedi/the Force or all that - my childhood fantasy was to be Han Solo, not Luke. 

And yet I betrayed my youth and sold the Falcon and all the rest, figures and all, for a large base model (I can't remember the make to this day, but I remember my first one had vacuum tubes) and a Starduster omnidirectional mounted on a 50' pole.  I had some fun years and had 2 memorable late night 'skip' connections, one cross country somewhere in Nevada and even one international New Zealand hit that blew my mind. Also experienced (in day-after fashion) the power lightning can have - I was always smart enough to disconnect the coax whenever I was done in case of storms, but I just laid the end on the concrete floor of the secondary concrete block building my setup was in (primarily was built for my dad's woodworking tools plus lawn/gardening equipment), and one day I walked in and there was a 3 inch deep divet blown from the concrete floor after the prior night's storm. 

Was some fun times/memories to be sure, but that said though - if Doc Brown showed up right now in the DeLorean and offered to take me back, I think I'd go strangle my younger self until I agreed not to give up all that valuable classic Kenner swag, knowing what I know now. 

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Started a similar thread years ago, but it since died.  I'm not sure how many of these guys are active on here anymore.  There's probably more than the half dozen or so who have popped their heads in here.

 

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Everyone posting their call sign. lol.  Something I'd do over PM.  Search for call sign, get address.  

I think I'll just end up getting a Yaesu mobile radio. I think at least one of them can be modded for GMRS (have a few repeaters in the area for this) but not sure if those support C4FM as well. I'll just consider C4FM as a bonus. 

It seems very much like a mess on the digital side.  Totally not good for new HAMs.  Seems like once you get into it, then choose a digital. Seems a bit more silo'd off from good old analog.  But handheld digital radios are much cheaper now, so new HAMs will be more likely to have digital capabilities and not really fully understand what they want or what they have.  

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73 de N4MJC.  I barely use my license, though.

And for the record, "ham" isn't an acronym, so you don't need to spell it out in all caps.

- Trip

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On 2/20/2019 at 11:21 AM, Trip said:

73 de N4MJC.  I barely use my license, though.

And for the record, "ham" isn't an acronym, so you don't need to spell it out in all caps.

- Trip

THIS!  I was just going to reply with exactly this sentiment!

AC8YZ here.  Who cares about addresses?  You want to get eaten by my (or someone else's) dog, have at it.  All someone needs to do is listen to a cheap SSB shortwave radio for a few minutes and they can write down dozens of callsigns and get addresses from the FCC from there.  Plus, I would be willing to bet at least a few here (myself included) own businesses, which makes it REALLY easy to get addresses in most states.

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There is a local hamfest in the morning.  Going to be hitting that up hopefully. 

Im not really sure what my next radio is going to be.  I went to a local club meet and they were demonstrating DMR. Unfortunately don't know how it's features are any different than D-Star and Fusion.  We have repeaters in the area for all, but D-Star is the most popular still.  I need to talk to some local guys to see if those on Digital are all part of talkgroups.  Going digital seems like things can just get siloed off. 

One thing that Im not 100% sure on, my work uses DMR.  At first I thought I could just get a DMR radio, tune in and listen.  But I'd have to figure out their ID and talkgroup?

Lot of cool features with digital, but being solo at this there is no point really.  Plus I am more interested in local things, and lot of people still on analog, and a lot of towers really only get used by their owner.

Ive been looking at a Yaesu analog 2m only mobile radio, and a little more expensive 2m/70cm C4FM capable radio.

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I only own two radios, a Baofeng that I keep in the car and a Yaesu VX-7R.  I wanted to get something on HF but I can't justify the money.

- Trip

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Two questions:

1.) What are the feature differences between Yaesu, DMR, and D-Star? I can't really find a good source that talks about the features/capabilities fo these digital technologies and how they compare. They all seem the same in terms of capabilities and features. The only thing I have been able to find that different between them is that with D-Star you can call from one repeater to another repeater. 

2.) Im wanting to get a "police" scanner whether I get a handheld radio or build a SDR.  On radio reference I am a bit confused on Motorla Type II SmartZone and Project 25 Phase II.  Any APCO-25 will pick both up right?

Edited by red_dog007

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Yaesu Fusion, D-Star, and DMR are just different systems for digital communication.  I would personally suggest D-Star, but DMR is an open standard and will cost less to get into, if you are willing to deal with the additional difficulty.

 

Edit:  More info: http://www.mikemyers.me/blog/2016/2/19/d-star-dmr-fusion-which-is-right-for-you

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So I recently got into drones.  Got my first one built.  So I got my FAA license which is 100% needed now. Looking around, there is an argument for needing an amateur radio license.  Seems like general consensus on regulation interpretation is you are better off having it. 

People getting their amateur license has been on the increase for about a decade now hitting record numbers year after year.  Would be interesting to know how many of these numbers are for drones.

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DMR is fun, lots of repeaters, and you can get personal "hotspots".  DMR is also pretty active.

If you wanna listen to the police, get an RTL-SDR.com blog SDR (software defined radio) dongle. You can pick one up on amazon. They're 25 bucks and scanners that can listen to P25 typically suck (outside of maybe unidens newest one) and cost well over 500.

Then head on over to radioreference and figure out how to install boatbods OP25 fork and listen to the Tennessee Statewide P25 system if you're in Chattanooga. You can even use a raspberrypi to run OP25. 

With the SDR you can listen to both analog and digital signals, decode pager transmissions, track airplanes flying over your house and even feed that data to some websites. There is quite a bit going on with SDR.

Lots of cool radios out there too, µBITX, all the Chinese DMR radios, and stuff that people are doing with SDR.

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Think Im going to get an odroid-c0 and the rtl-sdr. Get it working and programmed, then build it into a nice handheld radio.  

Thing is pretty nice.  It's a clean board with few components so can do slim profile.  2 USB, UART, power switch, rtc and battery connector.  Lot more powerful and flexible than the Pi Zero W. 

https://www.hardkernel.com/shop/odroid-c0/

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I'm not sure why you'd not just go with a standard pi3. If for nothing more than the fact that thats mostly what people are using and if you need help, it'll be there. FWIW, a Pi Zero is almost completely unusable for at least OP25, not sure how well it would do with other SDR stuff, likely not good.

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The help will just come down to software, and besides setting up any required GPIO, software configuration will be the same. It'll be like having a PC with Intel vs AMD but in this case Broadcom vs Amlogic. With the ODroid I'd have less GPIO setup.  I think I only immediately need the GPIO for the LCD.

I'd go with the Pi3 Model A+ due to size.  The RAM is the biggest reason against the Pi3.  It only has 512MB.  The C0 still has the full 1GB like its bigger brother the C1+. I could go with the B+ and remove connectors to fit in a smaller package. But it's a little more and I'd need/want to buy a few more components for it.  Plus ODroids support eMMC which is great for increased reliability over microSD.  

Im not 100%, but I think the Amlogic CPU has a bit more horsepower behind it over the Broadcom as well. 

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