Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KM9G, Jun 13, 2021.
You're doing it wrong then. Never disappointed with QRP.
Depends on the antenna for to use. But when there is not enough space to put the right one on top of the roof, its getting critical. Not everybody is able to use the right antenna for the low bands.
It is discouraging:
1) the SFI dipped to an historical low for Cycle 25 this week, below 69. That is close to the very minimum we saw at the last quarter of Cycle 24 . IOW, the poor propagation continues despite the true onset of Cycle 25. We should have seen a rise happen --clearly-- last Winter: now we will be lucky to see improved conditions, if at all by this Fall. Here's hopin'!
2) the adoption of FT8 now dominates HF and VHF ham bands. In the VHF contest last week a vast, vast majority of the contacts were FT8. This means 'direct' operator modes are being abandoned to the point of questioning their future viability. This is clearly prevalent on HF, not just VHF ;
3) IF prop picked up significantly, then SSB and CW would clearly be more used on the HF bands. But right now, we are 'talking about radios on streaming video' rather than USING the radios to yack. Who can blame 'em? No one's fault, but it is a shame: what gets us 'radioactive' again depends clearly on Cycle 25.
I've been enjoying the Coffee and Ham Radios series, keep it up!
Just my opinion and based only on my experiences, but I don't think it is all that dire. I'll admit conditions are not fantastic but they are certainly good enough to make plenty of regular contacts. I currently only operate phone and have enjoyed playing radio through the bottom and continue to do so every chance I get. My best DX contact I've made was just last year and that was somewhere around the bottom of the last cycle. Just to be clear I don't have some big gun station either. Many might even think my station would have a tough time making contacts at the top of a cycle never mind the bottom lol. I personally think some give up too soon after a little effort and retreat to a more efficient digital mode because it's almost guaranteed that you'll make some contacts. I'm not knocking that either as I'm tempted to give FT8 or some similar mode a try just because it's something I haven't tried yet.
I'd suggest checking some spotting pages (POTA, SOTA, and any other OTA etc.) and tuning around to those frequencies to see what stations you can hear. There's good activity daily and especially on the weekends. That should give you an idea of what is going on with the bands and give you an opportunity to make some contacts too. Anyway, I'm enjoying my on air time and I hope to hear you all out there!
Best spotting link is:
They'll kill us, skin us, and eat us. Hopefully in that order.
No argument, but I also like https://dxheat.com/dxc/ for the heat map of "hot contacts" in the lower right of the page.
See if you can get Ozzy Osborne. Now THAT would be funny.
Is Ozzy a ham?