What can JT65 do that PSK31 can't do? What can JT9 do that JT65 can't do?

Discussion in 'Working Different Modes' started by KC0BUS, Oct 14, 2016.

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  1. G3YRO

    G3YRO Ham Member QRZ Page

    Isn't this what Amateur Radio is supposed to be all about?!

    Wish I could understand how people get any satisfaction out of using these modes. Getting your computer to make a Contact requires Zero operating skill !

    Still . . . each to their own, I guess.

    Roger G3YRO
  2. W4NNF

    W4NNF XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    That's no more true with the new digital modes that it is with phone or CW if you're using a modern rig. Unless you're tuning an amp, all you do is twist the dial and maybe push an auto-tune button on phone or CW. And on the digital modes, the computer is not telling you which stations you should work, in which order, and which have signals strong enough for a QSO--so there is still operating skill and experience involved.

    As far as "prolonged QSO," a QSO is by definition an exchange of reports, QTHes, etc. Ragchewing has its place, sure. But you can ragchew just as effectively on PSK31 as on RTTY. The new modes like FT8? No, you can't ragchew, but you don't do that on phone or CW all the time either. You're not doing that in a contest or working DX (usually). Nobody says you have to use FT8 all the time either. In fact, nobody says you have to use these modes at all. And they are spectrum efficient and will hardly bother anybody in the depopulated segments in which they reside.

    What amateur radio is about, among other things, is having fun and increasing your technical knowledge and operating skills, all of which can be accomplished with the new modes. :)
    WU8Y and AG5DB like this.
  3. KA2CZU

    KA2CZU XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I really hate to channel "Burt" but technical modes that are enjoyed purely because they are machine-to-machine without operator intervention have a place to play within Amateur Radio, as Roger said ... "each to their own" :D

    It's not either "chats and prolonged QSO's" nor "Getting your computer to make a contact"... it's "both" and "and" :D

    ยง97.1 Basis and purpose.
    The rules and regulations in this part are designed to provide an amateur radio service having a
    fundamental purpose as expressed in the following principles:
    (a) Recognition and enhancement of the value of the amateur service to the public as a voluntary
    noncommercial communication service, particularly with respect to providing emergency communications.
    (b) Continuation and extension of the amateur's pr oven ability to contribute to the advancement of
    the radio art.
    (c) Encouragement and improvement of the amateur service through rules which provide for
    advancing skills in both the communication and technical phases of the art.
    (d) Expansion of the existing reservoir within the amateur radio service of trained operators,
    technicians, and electronics experts.
    (e) Continuation and extension of the amateur's unique ability to enhance international goodwill.

    RTTY and PSK31 are very similar from a user's perspective, with the exception of the greater use of macros with PSK31 due to recent software's support of same.
    I find my typing can keep up with both.. I merely use macros just like I would in CW, if I had a memory keyer, for typical station, name, qth info, then type in
    details for a particular QSO... and switch to full interactive mode if I have time for a "prolonged QSO"...

    Obviously the JT modes are for simple exchanges, but in those cases I'm looking at propagation and what I can do with lower power....and in some cases
    just making contacts while doing something else.... nothing really wrong with that, is there?
    WU8Y likes this.
  4. K2CQW

    K2CQW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I do 25 watts out, fan comes on sometimes, 10 watts will work, try it.
  5. N4AAB

    N4AAB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I will, after I get Internet out there. Otherwise I cannot time sync my laptop.
  6. W4KJG

    W4KJG Subscriber QRZ Page

    The majority of my 55+ years of amateur radio has been about learning, research, testing, fielding, etc. It led to an incredibly fulfilling 40+ year career in the RF/Microwave industry. After retirement, I kept it up. In retirement, I back to using much lower cost methods of development and testing. That is where amateur radio comes back into my life.

    Whether it is building the perfect antenna or the perfect violin, it is something crazy people like me strive for (and I have actual medical and government papers to prove just how crazy I am).

    These days, there are lots of syndromes and disorders. Some of mine have been detrimental to my daily life (like PTSD), but many others like ADHD/ADD, OCD, etc., have been a blessing to me throughout my life and career.

    The Obsessive part of my OCD tells me there has got to be a better way. The Compulsive part of my OCD tells me that I can figure out how to do something using a much better method. The "hyper focus" of ADHD/ADD pushes me to pursue these crazy ideas to completion. The "hyper Activity" part of the ADHD/ADD still pushes me to crazy work hours at age 70. These days, after a project, I need to rest for a few days, so I can start some other crazy project all over again.

    The digital modes and the Internet reporting software now available has allowed me to perfect things we could only model not too many years ago. Things like WSPR, PSK Reporter, WEBSDR.ORG, and many more have allowed me to determine if what I have done is significant. Using non-QSO modes like JT, WSPR, and others has allowed me to do a lot of things as a licensed amateur, that I could have only done on a much smaller scale for many other users.

    My career allowed me to rub elbows with great people and organizations for things like antenna modeling (I started with 1/48th scale brass models), spread spectrum communication, predicting and measuring LUF/MUF (Lowest Usable Frequency/Maxium Usable Frequency), and so much more. Although the percentage has dropped, the number of licensed amateurs developing these so much of what we have today, was because it was a because of crazy hams who would go home and do more research and testing.

    So, I design, build and perfect "it", and test "it." Many times that "test 'it'" is via what I call semi-SOTA or semi-BOTA. Once it is working to my satisfaction, I move on to the next challenge.

    In between, there is a lot of testing where I really just want to know what is happening with my experiment. I don't want to rag chew about somebody's gall bladder.

    Thankfully (my wife might not agree) I have plenty of other hobbies to keep doing these things in other disciplines. But ...

  7. KQ0J

    KQ0J XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    " Getting your computer to make a Contact requires Zero operating skill "

    All the questions I see from beginners and all the bad operating practice I see on the air would disprove that opinion.

    For example working FT8 for DX contacts - the noob is going to be calling only after the station calls CQ and only
    on the same frequency as the DX and wonders why he never makes a contact. Another operator knows how to work
    the mode and time calls and makes many more contacts.

    As far as the mode discussion - JT65 / JT9 - I think its like BPSK31 vs QPSK31 - QPSK was better but came in
    late to the game and never gained acceptance.
    WU8Y and W4KJG like this.
  8. W4KJG

    W4KJG Subscriber QRZ Page

    If you have a GPS unit, it should provide exact time. So will the clock on a cell phone. It isn't very difficult to manually sync your computer clock to a clock like either of the ones I mentioned.

    Another way is to tune to the FT8/JT65 portion of a band that is open and active. You need to listen to the signals or watch them on a display such as a waterfall or pan display. FT8 signals start every 15 seconds. JT65 signals start every 60 seconds. The cycles are known as sequences. Each minute, the FT8 sequences are nnnn:00, nnnn:15, nnnn:30, and nnnn:45. A sequence is about 13 seconds, so their is a short time between sequences. If you listen to just a few sequences you will know when to sync your computer clock. JT-65 starts occur at nnnn:00. Once your computer clock is set to the correct time within a few seconds, you should be able to demodulate FT8 and JT signals with WSJT-X.

    You can do the same thing if your receiver is capable of receiving WWV or CHU.

    I know that manually setting the computer clock works because I've used it a number of times when portable on a summit or on a beach. Also, the laptop I use has a clock that stays on time for quite at least 8-12 hours, so I can set it before I head out. Even my cheap Timex will hold within a second, or so, for more than a day or two. Once you are able to demodulate signals, the WSPR-X display includes a DT (delta time/ time difference) column referenced to actual time. It will give you an idea of how far off your timing might be.

    The paragraph I bolded from KQoJ is very important to understand. Reading and understanding the excellent on-line operating guides for each type of signal is vital.

    These types of digital signals rely on ODD/EVEN sequences. If a CQ is heard on an EVEN sequence, it must be answered on an ODD sequence, and vice-versa. The recommended sequencing is based on the 0-degree Prime Meridian. It is something to read about, but not really fret about. From my experience, it is only somewhat followed. And, I have no idea what the unfortunate operators do if they are in parts of England, France, Spain, etc., where they are very near the Prime Meridian.

    Lastly, you do not have to answer the CQ on the same frequency. It involves the option on the main WSJT-X window to lock the transmit and receive frequencies together. Since I usually do not run a transceiver, but instead use a separate DSP receiver and stand-alone transmitter, I don't worry very much about this issue either. Actually, it helps in many cases.

    Good Luck,
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
  9. N4AAB

    N4AAB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    No GPS unit. My cell phone's conection at the house depends on our wireless... otherwise its connection to the telephone system can be intermittant. My radio can get WWV. I used that to set my analog wall clock.

    I'm working on getting logging software onto my mint linux laptop.
  10. NS8N

    NS8N Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yep. I made this mistake when I first started. It's easy to work split mode with FT8 and most of the rare DX uses it. Good tips here (pdf warning):


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