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Need a Digital Mode Reference

Discussion in 'Working Different Modes' started by AC2MM, Jun 11, 2018.

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  1. AC2MM

    AC2MM Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    A lot of info, guys...
    Well, you guys gave me a lot of good refernce material at least.
    For W4RAV, I see that you've done all this for many years. But from what I see, the amount of hams on some of these modes has dropped off considerably since I started in 2014, especially PSK.
    I call in Olivia for an hour, no replies. Same thing for MFSK.

    That Rosetta stone thing is probably as good as anything for a lot of signals.
    But when you brought up the Klingenfuss page, there is a Memory Stick available that has 15K images of different modes collected, correct? (BTW, I had a's 800 modes with 15K images)
    I don't see a place to order it however, or to look at samples of the images. Do you?

    On my radio, a Kenwood TS-590S, I'm going to go back to the SignaLink sound card instead of using the internal sound card that HRD uses now.
    Except for WSJT, I can't control my TX ALC level because there's no knob for it. That will cure the "splatter" and keep the signal clean.

    I've got to see if I can reach down to Houston using one of your suggested modes so I can hold a QSO with my friend. Gotta get someone to answer...

    Thanks for all your help, you've been great,
    Robert AC2MM
    W4RAV likes this.
  2. AC2MM

    AC2MM Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    ", but ThrobX4 or one of the Thor modes would be excellent"

    Are these fairly new modes?
    My MARS check in is on Thor 22, but I haven't been really serious about other digital modes other than PSK for about 8 months now, so I don't recognize some.
    Wouldn't you have to know somebody to call rather than just calling CQ?
    I never see any of these discussed anywhere, including ARRL mags.
    W4RAV likes this.
  3. W4RAV

    W4RAV Ham Member QRZ Page

    They've been around at least a decade... My first logged THOR and THROB happened in 2007. I'm sure they were around long before I got to it.

    Setting up a "sked" will make it easier to work someone, but calling CQ (with RSID) has netted me great results too. Also check the PSKReporter to see if anyone else is trying.

    It's not surprising that they're not discussed much. With 100s of modes to choose from, it's unlikely every one of them would be covered. Particularly if the interest (like, say, FT8) isn't there.

    Kinda like Pokémon, I plan to catch-'em-all! :)

    As the saying goes... "If it were easy, everyone would do it." And FT8 fits that cliché nicely. :) It's easy, it's fast, and accomplishes many goals with very little fuss.
  4. G0JUR

    G0JUR Ham Member QRZ Page

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  5. K3DCW

    K3DCW QRZ Lifetime Member #212 Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    No, both Thor and Throb have been around for some time.

    No, you can call CQ in any mode. Most of my Thor/Throb/MFSK/Olivia/FeldHell/etc QSOs have come by calling CQ, but doing so with RSID TURNED ON. With RSID on, I send a small snippet of MFSK that identifies the mode. Someone on the other end with software that recognizes RSID (Fldigi, DM780, MultiPSK) will get a little pop-up on their screen that shows what mode is being sent, the frequency, and usually a hyperlink to go straight to that freq/mode in the software.

    A lot of digital modes have fallen by the wayside with the popularity of FT8, but they are still in use here and there.
  6. K3DCW

    K3DCW QRZ Lifetime Member #212 Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    One thing to keep in mind is that Klingenfuss doesn't care about amateur radio and/or amateur radio modes for the most part. Joerg's effort is focused on the professional, semi-professional, governmental/military, and hobbyist markets that are interested in things OUTSIDE of the amateur bands. Largely, it is of use to people that are interested in what is called Utility Radio. Utility Radio includes such things as HF aeronautical communications, military/governmental communications, maritime stations, and the such: basically, anything BUT amateur radio and shortwave broadcasting. As such, that USB stick will have mostly (completely) have pictures and images that have ZERO relation to anything you see on the amateur bands.

    You can place the order by clicking on the link to the Order Form along the left-hand side of the website.
    W4RAV likes this.
  7. W4RAV

    W4RAV Ham Member QRZ Page

    IMO, where all the really interesting stuff is anyway. You've seen one FT8 QSO, you've seen 'em all. But outside the amateur bands you get pager traffic, satellite data, tracking trains, planes, boats, cars; weather fax, ground-based GPS, dot-gov and dot-mil exchanges... oh, that list is long, I'll stop here.
    K3DCW likes this.
  8. AC2MM

    AC2MM Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    All good stuff..
    I spent the day trying to call Oliviua and various MFSK modes with no luck.
    It's about 11 pm here, and I'm about to shut down, and I see these signals, tried everything I can think of with no luck.
    I also tried your links to help, no help.
    Please see the attached:

    Any ideas:
    I listened to the tones, but my hearing is bad, so I can't rely on that.
    Almost forgot, the radio was on 7.072.50

    Have a good night,
    Robert AC2MM
  9. K7GQ

    K7GQ Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'm sure you're looking at FT8 now. That used to be PSK territory but with so much activity now, the FT8 segment has expanded in both directions - "infringing" on the PSK sub-band and the JT modes above.
  10. AC2MM

    AC2MM Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I guess that's part of the problem, as I brought up to the WSJT group in a post recently.
    In one of the links you guys sent me in this thread, 7072.5 is listed as an Olivia/ MFSK freq, which is why I tried those two mostly.
    I hate to ask this, but if the information is not reliable, then how do you know where you're supposed to be working in order to have a conversation on Olivia?

    I just recently caught the end of the Virginia ham assoc on this frequency, where they were sponsoring a "check-in" of any hams wishing to use Olivia 500/16 on Tuesday nights only, (I'm guessing here) around 8pm to 9:30 I think. It was around 9 pm when I ran into it, and they were closing shop.
    They said that they were doing this to get hams back into "keyboard to keyboard" conversations again, implying getting away from semi-automated operations like FT-8 just to fill logbooks, but not actually using it to communicate anything. I think it's great, personally and I plan to be there next Tuesday. I found out that the ARRL doesn't accept FT-8 or JT-65 modes for contesting, which surprised me. I don't know the reason, but something has to be done to allow the users space without infringing on the space normally used for other digital modes.

    I don't have the experience you guys do, but at a glance, there seems to be far too many modes generally. There aren't that many hams in the world to possibly make daily use of all these modes. IMO,. someone should come up with a (new) game plan that lays out the intended purpose of each mode, or new modes, and reprogram them, and eliminate the repetitious ones to widen the usable area for more hams to participate. You can't "make" anybody conform to this, but at least with a new "band plan", you might get more activity, usability over greater distances keeping the overall number to half of what is there now. The only person that has come up with a totally new approach to signal analysis that works, is Joe Taylor. All these other modes are people just modifying code that someone else created, and from what I read, most of the time, it's nothing new. That's how you end up with 70+ modes, but only a few are used regularly,

    I also brought this problem up to Joe in the WSJT Users Group. Basically, using his superb creation to enhance existing digital modes, or create new ones, with improved abilities at digging through the noise to have "conversations" albeit with a different approach. They asked me to come back with suggestions. In order for Joe's design to work, it must have structure, in the case of FT-8, 13 characters.
    This presents a problem for "conversations", as there is no "structure" right now, but I suggested one. Basically, create or modify a mode using arrays, a common, structured method of holding data. I used to use these for various purposes when I was programming in C/C++ for 20 years. (Maybe they use something else now, who knows) We, or the User, would have to conform to a more structured approach to a conversation, which is not difficult really, it's just that you would have to break up your conversation into character groups, with some kind of time frame limit, and perhaps, using that particular mode, you would have a preset number of character arrays, with a preset length in each block. For example, maybe you would have an array of 10 blocks, with 12 characters per block. This would however, have to be filled within a preset time frame so the TX could be performed at a constant interval. Obviously, it would be slower, but if you're looking for conversation and [reasonable] accuracy on decoding, you can't expect it to be fast, i.e. it's not for awards.

    This is off-topic I know, sorry...but it is a bit frustrating to try and "guess" what signal that is, and RSID only works, as one of you pointed out, if they have their RSID switch turned on. And, as you pointed out, people won't stick to the frequencies and width assigned to that mode, some simply don't care where they operate. So, in my eyes, we're back to what I said earlier. Fewer modes, more space per mode, redesigned modes to combine the best design and intent of that mode, and maybe we toss in some of Joe's engineering , or better yet, ask his team to contribute, to make some of these far more capable than they are now. And each mode contains an ID of some type.

    Who's going to do this? That's a tough question. That's why Joe built his own software instead of offering it as a general commodity to be hacked up by anyone with a computer. So we need that level of expertise, but we can't have individual software packages for each mode, not workable.

    That's enough. Do you guys, who have all the experience, so much experience, that you simply are tired of TX and prefer to just listen now, know which ones you'd eliminate, or prefer? You're the guys who know better than anybody, where the redundancy lies, which modes are truly a significant step ahead of the others.

    Yup, I do like the digital modes.

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