Digital Modes For Amateur Radio Operators. Just what the Internet needed, another web site for amateur radio right? Well, this one is a little different in that it only pertains to Sumter County, Florida. While it can be of some use by those living outside of our country the main point of it is to get more folks on the digital modes be it on HF or the upper bands.
Some of the first questions operators new the digital modes ask it what equipment do I need? What software is the best? How do I get on the air and make contacts on the digital modes.
Equipment needed, in addition to your station, is a interface that connects your radio to your computer. There are a variety of ways of doing this, one of the most basic methods is to use a couple of opto-isolators, some 3.5mm audio cables and away you go. Granted you may have feedback and/or ground loops but that’s for another discussion. The best way to get on the digital modes is by connecting the computer and rig together through the use of an interface. There are several options available for an interface: MFJ Enterprises,SignalLink, Timewave Technology and West Mountain Radio. Most of the current computer interfaces are USB devices with their own sound cards built in. Some of the interfaces rely upon the sound card in computer which is fine to use but you must be careful not to transmit computer system sounds over the air. A way around this is to add a second sound card to your computer dedicated to amateur radio use.
As for software, there’s a correlation between operators and digital modes software and the vehicles we all drive. Everyone likes theirs, discounts most other software packages and if fierce in their dedication to it. That being the case there is a list below of the more popular amateur radio software. Note that this is not the complete list, if there’s one you’d like to see on here then use the contact form for that. For more on digital modes software just use this link: digital modes software.
Since this is to be a group for Sumter County residents* I thought it would be nice to give out some membership numbers and downloadable membership certificates for your blogs and web sites. Maybe even set up a couple home county awards as well.
*Sumter County residents is a broad term in our county with the snowbirds, RV crowd and others.