Ham Radio - The Advantage of DStar and DMR Modes

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by G4YDM, Nov 3, 2016.

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  1. G4YDM

    G4YDM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Ham Radio is a fascinating hobby, but what are the advantages of D-star and DMR modes?

    There are many different interests within the umbrella name of Ham Radio. People communicate with other like-minded people around the world using the Internal Short Wave bands. Ham Radio Operators equipment include H.F., (High Frequency), transceivers covering several of the Ham Band allocations, and many use Yagi aerials with three, four and sometimes six elements, to not only transmit their power out to the receiving station, but also to receive weak signals form lesser equipped ham radio Operators using simple aerial systems such as dipoles or vertical radiators. These aerial elements can be thirty three feet long when covering the twenty metre Ham Band, if the elements are widely spaced between each other at say point two of a wavelength, the distance between the elements is four point two metres, a very large aerial indeed.

    Many Radio Hams who I have spoken to around the World have sixty feet high towers with multi element aerial as described above. You need a lot of space for such an aerial, and planning permission to go along with it.

    D-Star and DMR are Ham Radio modes which are gaining in popularity, because the problems associated with having a large aerial do not exist, signals on D-star and DMR do not rely of the ionosphere to propagate signal around the World, they use laser light and data packets used to facilitate the International World wide web.

    Many elderly radio Hams who have moved from their long term family homes, into small apartments, where outside aerials are not allowed, are finding that their interest in communication can still continue, using D-star or DMR modes of communication. The digital mode also has a great advantage over traditional propagation. You need propagation to be working in your favour when using High Frequency bands. If there is no propagation on a particular Ham Band, you simply do not hear any signals. D-star and DMR modes rely on the efficiency of the Internet, offering Radio Hams Worldwide communication without the need for natural reflection and refraction of the transmitted signal via the Earth's Ionosphere.

    Handheld transceivers capable of Digital transmission are now freely available from many of the Ham Radio retailers. Their transmissions are converted from standard analogue voice signals via voice encoders built into the hand set, these transmissions are picked up via local repeaters that are connected with each other to form a Worldwide network, if you do not live beside a D-star or DMR repeater you easily can turn your home based computer into a repeater with inexpensive add-on technology, they do the same job as a nearby repeater does.

    John Allsopp G4YDM https://www.qrz.com/lookup

    Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/John_Allsopp/1925417

    Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9541990
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2016
  2. KT4NR

    KT4NR Ham Member QRZ Page

    For the sake of discussion I might further your argument by noting the current banafits specific to each mode. DStar audio may not be the best but no one comes close to the 1.2 GHz data simplicity. DRATS and related slow speed software are also quite useful. So DStar Data modes are really good.

    DMR has the benefit of better audio and the benefit of efficiency. You can make better use of the spectrum by integrating multiple conversations at the same time. Tetra does 4 and DMR does 2 time slots but Tetra has not taken off. (Think it is a cost and complexity thing.)

    I think the combination of the two modes, as you note above, really do benefit folks in a variety of ways and open new doors for those who can't do HF.

    Good article.
  3. KL7KN

    KL7KN Ham Member QRZ Page

    So, if I get this correctly - D-Star and DMR use a small, hand-held device, and communicate - digitally - world-wide over an interconnected network on very low power.

    Cool, I have the same exact thing. It's called a cell phone. Initial investment - $24.95 USD.

    This is not to harsh on the OP, just to wonder if using a different named thing (cell phone = D-Star) radio to do much the same thing is a hobby. I get that folks don't have acres for huge towers and clouds of Al up in the air. I certainly don't.

    But 5 watts, a bit of wire and a day in the park is much more 'fun' that using a cell phone to talk with someone. And if I happen to be someplace -say, remote Alaska, where the infrastructure for D-Star/DMR or the Internet for that matter, just doesn't exist...I can still have fun with my little HF radio, a bit of wire and some time.

    (Shrug) Hams are hams for their own reasons. I guess that's one reason the hobby can be so much fun.
    W4KDK, N2YGI, VK2WP and 2 others like this.
  4. G3SEA

    G3SEA Ham Member QRZ Page

  5. G3SEA

    G3SEA Ham Member QRZ Page

    IRLP and Echolink have been providing the access mentioned for over a Decade.

    DSTAR HT''s are considerably more expensive compared to your vanilla NBFM HT's.

    All the new systems ie DSTAR ,DMR, Fusion,C4 etc,etc tend to spread the available user pool over these systems thus resulting in lower activity on each system ( unless a conference links them up ).

    N2YGI, WA4YBC and KA4AQM like this.
  6. K8WRS

    K8WRS Ham Member QRZ Page

    G3SEA makes common sense for those without big bucks in their pocket for a proprietary system.
    Echo Link provides a large following and you know who is available to contact when you log in.
    Thank you for a simple answer for the new operators that may not know about a free program that provides communication for all.
  7. KC1FNM

    KC1FNM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I really like the idea of DMR, but I must admit I'm kind of disappointed with the general lack of activity....even on the larger groups!
    I hope this changes.
  8. N8PC

    N8PC Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    you can also use DSTAR on HF it is built into the IC-7100 and is a module for the Ic-9100 called DV Mode Digital Voice which can be used even at 5 watts. DSTAR does not require internet to work you can link more than 1 site together over the airwaves and still get thru.
    KL7KN likes this.
  9. N8PC

    N8PC Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Also forgot to mention you can use DSTAR thru satellites as well. you can't do that with DMR.
    W2REZ likes this.
  10. WA7PRC

    WA7PRC Ham Member QRZ Page

    How do I use the "Internal Short Wave bands"?
    This first and only post from a new user smells like spam.


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