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Ideal for PSK Activations


#1

I have been thinking of doing PSK from Wendover Woods/other summits but I keep baulking at the thought of getting mud on my MacBook Pro!

However I’ve just seen this:

http://www.amqrp.org/kits/nue-psk31/index.html

Take a small keyboard and your 817/other rig and off you go. I’m eagerly awaiting their shipping date for more details.

73 Marc GØAZS


#2

In reply to G0AZS:

It’s going to have to be cheap. You can buy an Asus eePC for around £200 and you can use that as a proper computer when not playing radio.

Edit: I forgot this bit: It looks like a cute toy though!

Andy
MM0FMF


#3

In reply to MM0FMF:
Hi Andy

I’m hoping that the weak $ exchange rate will make it fairly affordable… plus the fact that it’s got to be a whole lot lighter than a laptop with a much lower power consumption… and with a display you could see in bright sunlight too I would imagine.

Anyway… it’s certainly cute!

73 Marc GØAZS


#4

In reply to G0AZS:

sharp intake of breath - ooooh! I’ve had my eye on one of those for a while too, although I suspect the old Student Loan aint gonna stretch to it. It does look like a really nice bit of kit to own mind.

I’ve recently given my G3 iBook an overhaul by adding some more RAM and bunging on a copy of OS X 10.4, with a view toward using it for /P datamode operations. I’ve been threatening PSK31 since I very first heard of SOTA some years back, and now I’m finally getting to the point kit-wise where it could happen. My current biggest limitation is the appalling dongle-style cheap-as-chips cmedia USB soundcard I’ve got - it doesn’t have a level control for the audio input.

Out of interest, what PSK software do you use on your mac? I’m having a play with cocoamodem at the moment.

73,

Dave 2W0BYA


#5

In reply to 2E0BYA:

Out of interest, what PSK software do you use on your mac?

Hi Dave

Actually I run digimodes at home using my shack PC only and for that it’s MixW v2.18 for digimodes (other than RTTY) and then I use use MMTTY with Writelog for RTTY contests.

The MacBook Pro isn’t used for Radio and it’s schizophrenic anyway. I use Boot Camp and run XP for work and Leopard (OS X 10.5) at home.

73 Marc GØAZS


#6

In reply to MM0FMF: Update:

It’s going to have to be cheap. You can buy an Asus eePC for around £200…
Hi Andy

I found reference to a price of $219 for DX orders inc. shipping (assembled and tested)… so about 110-120 pounds (plus VAT if you get stung for it by customs)

There is also mention of kits later in the year.

73 Marc GØAZS


#7

In reply to G0AZS:

It certainly looks cute.

I’m exceedingly tempted by the Asus eeePC. That’s £236 for a 900MHz Celeron machine with a 7in LCD, weighs 2lbs, runs Ubuntu and has a 512Mb Ram and a 4GB SSD. It has 802.11b/g and you can bung a 3G HSPDA modem in it too. Looks ideal as a machine to carry about as it is small and light and few moving parts (no spinning disks). You can run XP if you want to spoil it! :slight_smile:

Different beast entirely but looks much more useful a computing platform for SOTA/adventure radio than using a PDA or an old PC laptop. In the end it depends what you want to do.

Andy
MM0FMF


#8

In reply to G0AZS:

Vojtech OK1IAK is expert in this field

http://www.kufr.cz/~ok1iak/HAM/digimodes/index.php3

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#9

In reply to 2E0BYA:

Hi Dave,

I too am a Mac user (unfortunately/fortunately - i change my mind depending on the day :slight_smile: )

I use Cocoamodem - cracking application, and its been updated recently.

Regarding the crap soundcard on the Macbooks/iBooks, you could look at an Griffin iMic:
http://www.griffintechnology.com/products/imic

hope that helps,
bernard


#10

In reply to G0AZS:

I have been thinking of doing PSK from Wendover Woods/other summits
but I keep baulking at the thought of getting mud on my MacBook Pro!

However I’ve just seen this:

http://www.amqrp.org/kits/nue-psk31/index.html

Take a small keyboard and your 817/other rig and off you go. I’m
eagerly awaiting their shipping date for more details.

73 Marc GØAZS


#11

In reply to G0AZS:
I think my first post has gone astray, I am waiting for one to arrive. I was one of the early bird buyers (cost $160). The small keyboard a 2366 (8x4)is from Hong Kong $3 and $9 Postage.

Same one in Maplins £30, so with my PSK20 only problem with that it is only one band, should be ok. Will let the group know how I get on.

Regards

Dennis G6YBC


#12

In reply to EI8FDB:

Nice one bernard. I use cocoaModem too, I don’t find the interface all that intuitive and I’ve yet to figure out how independently set the frequency of each receiver and I can’t see a way of including LF/CR in the macros, which is a shame. Perhaps I’ll get my head around it. That said, it is a very good program, especially for free and I’m glad someone has done something good for datamodes on the mac.

I had already looked at the iMic, indeed, even looked on ebay for them. I am however, one of those penny-less student types, and even at ebay prices, I’d sooner not spend the money =) Fortunately I recently upgraded to OSX 10.4 and the in-built driver for my c-media USB soundcard includes support for attenuating the mic input level. Problem solved!

Yesterday I managed to get on the air with PSK31 and my ibook. I am at the home QTH in Worcs ATM, not at my Uni QTH in Bangor, where my Rascal GLX interface is. But I did manage to use a simple jack-to-jack cable for RX and lashed the mic to a pair of headphones and switched on VOX keying for TX, hi. It was just proof of concept, and it works =) I’ll put everything together a little better (Rascal interface, RS232 adapter for keying etc) when I get back to Bangor. When there is a fine day an 80m PSK31 activation should not be that hard to pull off (famous last words).

73,

Dave 2E0BYA


#13

In reply to G6YBC:
Hi Dennis

I look forward to seeing your report. I see from the Nuepsk list that they are in MP and will ship imminently.

I see you have done well with the early price too :slight_smile:

73 Marc G0AZS …currently K1UG/6


#14

In reply to G0AZS:

I’ve been thinking about PSK procedures for SOTA. From my experiences activating, you can get a fairly humungous pile-up of stations calling. It’s easy on SSB to pick out partial callsigns and also in the case of SOTA and my HF activations, I can recognise voices of lots of callers without hearing callsigns. However, on PSK it’s impossible to resolve multiple callers to a CQ if the all reply on your TX frequency.

I was thinking we should adopt a split frequency working style just like DX-peditions where the activator calls on a fixed frequency and the chasors spread themselves out, in say 100Hz increments. If the activator (the DX) always called with a nominal TX freq of the USB dial-frequency + 1000Hz, the chasors would know to sit around there and would reduce the number of chasors interfering with each other and should make it easier and hence quicker for the activator to work everyone.

Might be harder to find enough clear space on something like 40m, but shouldn’t be a problem on 60m, 30m. If we can get some working procedures hammered out now we can be ready for when the sun wakes up a bit more and real QRP DX from the summits becomes easy.

Or am I imagining solutions to problems that will never exist?

Andy
MM0FMF


#15

In reply to MM0FMF:
Hi Andy

I was wondering about that too. Although I cant imagine the PSK pile ups would be like the ones on 40m CW or otherwise. In any case I guess that chasers could spread themselves either side of the audio freq. and then activator could jump around and work them.

However this could be construed as a shotgun approach that many people will find quite objectionable.

We’ll have to wait and see I guess…

In fact this raises a general point about splits that should probably have another thread… so I’ll go and start one now.

73 Marc G0AZS …currently K1UG/6