First C4FM Contact

Discussion in 'VHF/UHF - 50Mhz and Beyond' started by KJ5T, Mar 5, 2020.

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  1. KJ5T

    KJ5T Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have been following the C4FM news for some time, since I am a member of a Yaesu group on Facebook (FT-857D and FT-1000MkV Field Owner). I have been thinking about getting into it for awhile. When I decided to put a 2M FM Mobile in my Mazda I went with a C4FM capable radio. I just got it installed this week. We have a local repeater hooked to the Texas Nexus room and it is pretty active, I tried it out today. I don't think I am going to get hooked on ragchewing on C4FM but it is a new mode for me and I do find it interesting.

    One of the amusing things was a guy in New Jersey talking to a guy in Ireland in the Texus Nexus room. Not much different than a VoIP call in terms of the technology but I got a kick out of it.

    What was your first C4FM Contact? Do you prefer other modes instead like DMR or D-Star? I am still very new to all of this. What do you most enjoy doing on C4FM or similar modes?
    WW2PT likes this.
  2. KC2RGW

    KC2RGW Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I haven’t done Fusion yet but DStar vs DMR from audio point of view is a draw. Same maladjusted levels present in both systems and all the poorly connected hotspot users with packet loss and jitter makes it worse. Fully lossless simplex range on either sounds very nice though.
  3. KJ5T

    KJ5T Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I spent quite a bit of time just listening while I drove to run some errands, no doubt some signals sound better than others. Some sound like those high compression SiriusXM Traffic Information Channels.
  4. KC2RGW

    KC2RGW Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    It’s neat technology for sure. There are bits of DMR and DStar I like, and some of each that I don’t. I’ll probably get a Fusion radio soon as I have a few local machines.

    One downside to the very well networked DMR system is that there is nearly zero local repeater use, it’s all linked traffic.
  5. WE4E

    WE4E Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Between D-Star, DMR and C4FM, I much prefer C4FM. The audio quality is significantly better to my ears. Very pleasant to listen to. I've made both local simplex contacts and via Wires-X. I'm fortunate that there are a couple of Fusion repeaters in my area that are connected to Wires-X, although I really don't play on them much.

    To me, DMR on its best day sounds terrible and is a challenge to copy 100%. Our local PD uses it and its no better. High marks for spectrum efficiency however.
  6. W4EAE

    W4EAE Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    DMR and C4FM (DN, by far more widely used than WV) use exactly the same audio codec; and the codec is a hardware codec sold by DVSI. It is not just they are using similar chips, they are using the exact same chip for audio encode/decode.

    I think the difference in sound mainly comes down to the radios being used (at both ends). The simple fact is that there a lot more junk DMR radios out there than there are for the other modes.

    Received audio on my Yaesu FT2D it horrendous in any mode.

    Received C4FM on my FTM-400 is excellent in C4FM (with a decent speaker attached).

    The best sounding HT I own is the Anytone D878UV in DMR (not so great on FM, but loud).
  7. WW2PT

    WW2PT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I never gave digital FM modes much thought until my brother gave me a ZUMspot. Now I’m a true believer.

    “Not real ham radio,” some say. Whatever. I don’t care. Besides, I thought “real” hams were supposed to embrace new technologies. My hat’s off to those who do.
  8. KJ5T

    KJ5T Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    It is all a new world for me, I have mostly been listening. There was a ham in Georgia yesterday talking to a ham in southern California. The ham in California was using a nano-spot which he was on the Texas Nexus room, though he was apparently talking on his cell phone. His audio sounded okay. The ham in Georgia was also using a hotspot (didn't catch which one) but he was coming in via a P25 Node in Australia. The station using P25 did have audio that didn't sound as good but it sounds like there are many factors.

    I have yet to figure out all the links. I am hoping to make it to an Austin Amateur Radio Club meeting at some point, will likely join the club to support the W5KA repeater and can get to learn a bit more about how they have things configured.
    WW2PT likes this.
  9. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I picked up the Yaesu FTM-400XDR about a year ago to try out one of the digital modes. Use it over 95% on the analog mode and the APRS function. I find it to be a great analog FM radio. While I appreciate some of the digital mode functions that are not available in analog, I find the digital audio to be very poor. It's a disgrace that the digital audio can not be made to sound at least as good as analog audio. How is it the audio on a cell phone is far better than that on a digital radio?
  10. WE4E

    WE4E Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I own two Radioddity GD77s and a Motorola XPR-7550e, and there's no significant difference. The local PD is all Motorola.

    DMR and C4FM may be using the same chipset, but it would not surprise me to know that the implementation is different.

    Bit rate.

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