Goodbye FT8, Hello Olivia, The MAGIC Digital Mode For HF!

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KJ4YZI, Oct 23, 2017.

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  1. N3HGB

    N3HGB Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have no interest in the various "contest modes" that don't allow a QSO. I did SITOR/AMTOR back in the day and kind of miss it. I found to be a very fun mode to work. The ARQ mode was really something with the old PK-232 lighting up like a disco :)
    Sailors back in the day were connecting to commercial SITOR stations with ham gear often enough that the operators at WLO would tell you the correct offsets for common ham gear if you asked, the maritime convention was different and you would be off frequency if you used the published numbers. WLO has moved on to PACTOR now, not sure how much AMTOR/SITOR is even left except for all the NAVTEX stations.
  2. K3EY

    K3EY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Guess I am the worst then.

    I don't do any digital form of so-call ham radio and think it's just plain asinine. It's anything BUT wireless.

    Kids do it everyday over the internet playing games and don't get excited.

    Why would you care how others feel think or say as long as you get to do your thing!
    VK6APZ likes this.
  3. KB2SMS

    KB2SMS Ham Member QRZ Page

    I do FT8 for fun, I couldn't care less about "awards".
  4. K3EY

    K3EY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I think that will go Over most heads here
    WB4IUY likes this.
  5. W1YW

    W1YW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Can we just get the facts next time on the OP --rather than a putdown of FT8? Why should I use Olivia over FT8?

    BTW 'magic' in Tech is a code word for ' snake oil'....was that your intent?
    WU8Y likes this.
  6. KJ4YZI

    KJ4YZI Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have to ask, i dont understand your comment.. Can you explain again? Thanks
  7. KJ4YZI

    KJ4YZI Ham Member QRZ Page

    I clearly explained in the video, why you would use Olivia over FT8..
  8. W1YW

    W1YW Ham Member QRZ Page

    ...and thus missed the point.

    Most of us don't see 'amateur radio news' as an ersatz YOUTUBE. If your 'news' headline and piece isn't appropriate to introducing the video--and here it is not-- many will not bother with the video. I didn't. Attacking FT8 was a real turn off for me investigating OLIVIA. Also leading with "MAGIC". Obviously I am not alone on this.

    Why don't you make a small table of FT8 and OLIVIA so we can see the plusses and minuses? Here...on the thread...not the video.

    Chip W1YW
    W9FTV and W0PV like this.
  9. W1YW

    W1YW Ham Member QRZ Page

    It means you don't have to attack FT8 and be defensive to get people interested.
    WU8Y, KK5R and KK3Q like this.
  10. KJ7WT

    KJ7WT Subscriber QRZ Page

    A couple of things come to mind after watching this:
    1. FT-8 does seem to have taken over HF. I can tune through the HF bands during the day and find no (or very few) SSB QSO's - almost all I hear are nets; no PSK31, but FT-8 is going strong.
    2. The comments about power are, in my opinion, incorrect. Increasing power should not increase distortion, unless your amplifier has problems, in which case ALL modes would be similarly affected. I have tried to make contacts with FT-8, especially in Europe, and it just is not happening with 10 watts. I can call all day and not be heard, but when I go to 50 or 75 watts, suddenly they can hear me, and the signal reports are not high values - they are typically similar to what I am hearing from them.
    3. I have had many nice QSO's with PSK31; even with macros in DM-780, I can still add "personal" notes to the transmission. Watching the Olivia QSO on the video was excruciating - much too slow for me. Also, it seemed (from what I could see) that there were many decoding errors in Olivia, and this may have been my misunderstanding of what was actually being sent. I'd much rather use PCK31 or 63 for an actual conversation.
    4. The author forgot to mention that you have to specifically "attach" the RSID to your macros in DM-780 - it isn't automatic. I add RSID to just the beginning of the CQ macros, not to the others (report, station info, etc.). If the operator hasn't added RSID to their CQ macro, then no one will know they are calling CQ if the signal level is below the noise.
    5. I suppose you could make a good case for FT-8 being only good for awards, but for me, it has allowed me to work stations that I would never have been able to work with PSK or SSB, as the noise levels at my location are so high (S7-S9 pretty much always below about 18-20 MHz) that other modes are unusable most of time, unless the other station is using a lot of power/gain antenna. I have called CQ on SSB portions for extended periods of time on the HF bands with almost zero results, but FT-8 will pretty much always get a reply.
    6. I might give Olivia a try again (I think I actually have made perhaps one or two Olivia contacts the past 10 years) and see how it works out.
    K4CAE, KD6SM, WU8Y and 1 other person like this.

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