Tuesday, January 31, 2006

F6IRF: REF-CW SO2R-DEMO audio-clip


The story starts Saturday at 08:02Z, while everybody starts moving to 40, so the 80m rate is getting low...
Without SO2R you would move to 40m but with SO2R you can benefit from both bands!

The antennas used are the 2 dipoles shown on the picture below (above the OB6-3M) the dipoles are only separated by 1meter - The filtering is achieved by mean of ICE monoband filters on each radio. The obvious reason for selecting a CQ frequency as high as possible is getting the harmonic 2 to fall outisde the CW band (2x 3542 = 7084). The power is 100W (but it works also pretty well with 500W).
I wrote the explanation below because, if you are not familar with the technique, it may look quite "mysterious". However in this configuration, the principle is simple A) at any given time, you only listen to 1 radio B) you never listen to your transmitted signal, but use this time to S&P on the second radio... (N1MM-software displays ïn "real time" on the screen what the PC is transmitting the only moment you monitor yourself is when you use the paddle...)
The time refers to the audio track (time displayed by your mp3 player)

L'histoire commence samedi a 8:02Z quand la bande 80 commence à se vider au profit du 40m. Sans SO2R la logique voudrait qu'on change de bande... avec le SO2R on peut jouer sur les 2 tableaux... Les antennes utilisées sont les 2 dipoles visibles sur la photo ci-dessous (aus dessus de la OB6-3M), seulement distants de 1m. Le filtrage est fait grace à 2 filtres monobandes ICE. La raison pour choisir une frequence assez haute sur 80, est evidente: faire que la H2 tombe en dehors de la bande CW (3542x2= 7084). La puissance utilisée est ici 100W sur chaque radio, mais l'expérience montre que ca marche également très bien à 500W.

J'ai écrit les explication ci-dessous parce que si vous n'êtes pas familier avec la technique tout ça peut paraitre extremement mystérieux... En fait dans cette configuration le principe est simple A) vous n'ecoutez qu'une seule radio à la fois B) vous n'ecoutez jamais ce que le PC transmets , mais vous utilisez le temps ainsi libéré pour chasser sur la seconde bande (avec N1MM une petite fenêtre affiche ce qui est transmis en temps réel). Le seul moment ou vous écoutez ce que vous transmettez c'est quand vous utilisez la clé... Le temps est le temps affiché par votre MP3 player. (je traduis pas la suite... ca doit pas être trop compliqué !)

at 00:00 radio1 (IC756) on 3542 QRL?
at 00:08 starting CQ on radio1
at 00:22 identified F5KDC as new multiplier on 7027 (radio2: IC735)
at 00:30 F6HLE replies to my CQ on 3542
at 00:34 Sending report to F6HLE (while F5KDC is working HB9CHY on 7027)
at 00:54 QSO with F6HLE completed / sending QRZ
at 01:01 DL2RUG calling on 3542 (F5KDC working LY2FN on 7027)
at 01:34 DL2RUG sending report 599 002
at 01:48 F8NZQ calling on 3542
at 02:06 sending from paddle on 3542 (the only moment I listen to what I am sending !)
at 02:19 CQ on 3542 (F5KDC still busy !)
at 02:33 no reply on 80 - calling F5KDC on 40m
at 03:03 sending report to F5KDC - 80m still quiet
at 03:19 found F6AEW on 7026 - 53 is a new multiplier...
at 03:25 F5LGF calls me on 80m
at 03:32 Sending report to F5LGF (F6AEW still calling without success)
at 03:39 F5LGF sending my report
at 04:03 calling F6AEW on 40m
at 04:17 repeating my call slowlier (nothing on 80m...)
at 04:25 F6AEW sending my report (in the meantime I am sending CQ again on 80m...)
at 05:15 still quiet on 3542, LX6T CQ'ing on 7024
at 05:24 calling LX6T
at 05:39 QSO with LX6T completed... (wish all QSO's could be that fast and clean!)
at 06:05 someone sending 599 01 that's a new mult !
at 07:13 finaly somone heard my CQ on 3542! IK1RQQ calling me...
at 07:38 It's F6KAR on 7023
at 07:49 calling F6KAR
at 08:04 QSO completed with F6KAR - resuming CQ on 80m
at 08:13 Call from F5BBD on 80m
at 08:38 using the paddle to complete QSO with F5BBD (identified F8BBL on 7022)
at 08:56 F6HZS calling on 3542
at 09:30 QSO completed / DL1RTD calling me on 3542
at 10:32 Calling F8BBL on 7022
at 10:49 QSO completed with F8BBL - resuming CQ on 80
at 11:14 Nil on 80m - F6KPQ/P CQ'in on 7019
at 11:30 Calling KPQ but DL5YL also ! (the LP handicap... DL5YL gets first)
at 12:07 still quiet on 80m calling KPQ again...
at 12:10 this time is the good one !
END of the STORY: 8 QSO logged on 80m / 6 on 40m

Monday, January 30, 2006


Call: F6IRF
Operator(s): F6IRF
Station: F6IRF
Class: SOAB LP
Operating Time (hrs): 28
Radios: SO2R

Band QSOs Mults
80: 316 103
40: 457 121
20: 307 88
15: 120 46
10: 6 5
Total: 1206 363
Total Score = 1,492,293

IC756/IC735 100W
Ant: OB6-3M / Steppir / dipoles @20m
Soft:N1MM Logger V6.1.9 with "5$ SO2R" (no external hardware)

On top of expected low sunspot conditions, suffered from local power-lines noise, which is a serious a handicap in this contest where most high-bands mults are worked just above the noise level...Missed the short 10m E's opening sunday evening (had just given-upmonitoring 10m to go back to 40/80 !).However slightly better score than my previous LP full-time attempt with a few more mults and a few QSO's less. At the end not too bad for a solar minimum...

The 380kV HT-line is visible on those 2 recent pictures (click on the picture to enlarge). It is a serious handicap in a contest like REF where most mults are worked at very low level

La ligne Haute-tension 380kV is clairement visible sur les 2 photos (cliquez dessus pour l'agrandir). C'est un serieux handicap pour la coupe du REF ou un grand nombre de multis sont faits au ras du bruit.

Bon, on pouvait s'attendre à pire avec un "spotless sun"...
Un peu de E's a bien aidé sur 15 et 20 le dimanche, avec de gros signaux
des stations des dpt de l'Ouest. Même le 10m a montré quelques signes de vie,
malheureusement pour moi juste au moment ou j'avais abandonné tout espoir...
A part ça tout a fonctionné "aux petits-oignons", et mis à part un problème
récurrent de QRN local après dissipation des brumes matinales, ce fut une CDR
"sans histoire"("Sans histoire", mais il faut bien le dire sans grand
enthousiasme non plus... peut-être l'usure, mais que le dimanche parait long
à un rate moyen de 30 pendant les 12 dernières heures...)
Mes statistiques perso, qui valent ce qu'elles valent, semblent indiquer
un effritement du nombre de stations F actives -314 contre 334 en 2004-
ce malgré l'arrivée de qqs F1 et F4. Les départements "rares" restent
grosso-modo les mêmes, avec quelques nouveaux-venus surprenants comme le 72.
Quant l'activité ultramarine on ne peut que remercier FM5CW pour sa
"fidélité au poste"...

Monday, January 09, 2006


Call: F6IRF
Operator(s): F6IRF
Station: F6IRF
Class: Single Op LP
Operating Time (hrs): 24
Radios: SO2R

Band QSOs
80: 237
40: 348
20: 450
15: 105
10: 0

Total: 1140 State/Prov = 50 Countries = 67 Total Score = 133,380

Rig: my usual small domestic station (minus 5dB - so even smaller than usual!),
Software: N1MM Logger V5.12.11
No cluster (of course, in this contest!)

After the disapointing 2005 attempt (did not manage to enter the top-ten in HP
category - 11th!), I decided to try something else... so why not LP; better be
at max allowed power in LP than at 1/3 of the max allowed HP power!
Started on 20m, but the band was closing and many W-stations could not copy me
(too busy working each others), so bad start...
Got better after 2200z, when 40m came to life, but it did not last...
However passed 400 before going to bed, which was not too bad, and finaly the
activity helping and conditions improving, I managed to pass the 1000 Q's mark
after 19h30 of airtime. (1hour more than it took me during the last JARTS, but
not too bad for LP!)...
Looking at others scores, get the feeling that North and East located
EU-stations, did not get the same kind of conditions... (on the other hand
EA1AKS seem to have done quite well!)
So at the end, and though I was not expecting a score, the result is quite
successfull compaired to last year: more qso's, more countries and more states
making a 55% points increase. A good weekend !
The main advantage of running LP was that I did not get the kids and YL to
complain that the internet was not working (The ADSL modem does not like me
running HP on 80/40). The only major drawback I experienced is that I got more
wild attacks against my frequency, and also that I worked far less W on 80m (8
versus 31 - but on the other hand, I worked VK and JA... which was a very good
sunday evening surprise, a pity they do not count as band mult !)

Country/setions stats can be seen at
You may listen to a few contest audio-clips in the next post below...
See you all in the next one

RTTY-SO2R audio clips

Those mp3 files, recorded during the ARRL roundup 2006, demonstrate how it is possible to boost a slow running rate, into something decent using SO2R... To enjoy them, you need to open 2 instances of MMVARI or MMTTY(or one of each!) and select stereo left-channel for one instance and stereo right-channel for the second one... (using MMVARI select mode RTTY-L and tones 2210Hz).
If you are interested, my general station setup is described here (my modest domestic station!):
And here are pictures of the high-band beams and the low band dipoles:

roundup extrait 1.mp3 Audio1: Calling on right radio (IC756pro2), searching on left radio (IC706). While the rate on 20m is relatively low, the overall rate becomes quite good. The antennas are side by side, separated by12m.- Absolutely no desensitivation/interference between the 2radios, here at 150W power level.

roundup extrait 2.mp3 Audio2: Same as above but the steppIR(on 15m) is looking at the back of OB6-3M(on 20m)... no interferences either. Note that it is possible to make 2 QSO's at the same time, while never having more than one signal on the air!

roundup extrait 3.mp3Audio 3: Same radio configuration but calling on 80m, while searching on 40. The antenna separation is only 1 m ! To hear me at LP-level, it means that VK6HD hears are much better better than mine!