Re: DMR information

Dwayne R <masterdr@...>
 

In other words, this is like that CQ-100 VOIP stuff, is this correct?



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On Fri, 9/14/18, Charles W. Powell via Groups.Io <doctorcwp=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:

Subject: [4SQRP] DMR information
To: main@4SQRP.groups.io
Date: Friday, September 14, 2018, 8:42 PM

It was brought to my attention that
perhaps everyone on the list is not familiar with DMR, so i
will do my best to give an explanation of what it is and
what it does.

DMR = Digital Mobile Radio.   Essentially it is a radio
that uses a digital voice encoding to optimize human speech
for radio transmission.

So why would we want to use it?  Well, because it is
also includes a way of accessing other radios and users
world-wide through the internet, using inexpensive radios,
and allows a number of ways to gain access.  DMR can
"talk" or work through DMR repeaters in your area,
or radio-to-radio, but the really exciting part of it is
that there are now inexpensive "hotspots" that
allow you use your home internet connection or mobile phone
to access the network.  In the case of the Four States
QRP group, it would allow us to have ad-hoc conversations
regardless of where each of us is located, formal or
informal nets, or even "spotting" nets to see who
is on the air with frequencies, times, etc.  If our
Talk Group is approved, we will have a platform for any or
all of these activities, plus any others that fall within
the realm of our amateur licenses.  (Even if it's
not, there are other places we could congregate on DMR.)

I was skeptical about DMR until I got into it.  On the
way to Dayton (Xenia) this year, I talked to hams along the
way and even arranged to have lunch with a fellow ham in St.
Louis.  There are folks who have more knowledge in
their pinky finger than I have in my entire head.  I
have spoken with Eric, 4Z1UG, as though he were next door.
(Some of you might listen to his podcast, QSO Today).
 I have done a lot of listening on the Baynet Talk
Group, and picked up a lot of information that I would
otherwise have had to spend hours researching.

Is there a downside?  Yes, sort of.  The radios
are proprietary, so programming requires some planning and
figuring out a "code plug" that will do what you
want it to do and go where you want it to go. It also
generally requires a computer and a cable for programming.
 It is a bit more complicated than just entering a
frequency and PL tone.  It's more that you have a
target (Talk Group, or Individual), a "color code"
(roughly equivalent to a PL tone), a time slot, so your
radio knows which half of the conversation(s) it wants, and
finally a frequency that allows you to get where you are
going.  I didn't think it was going to be nearly as
much fun though as I found it to be.

Is DMR Amateur Radio???  Well, yes and no.  It
does involve RF, but it is also a voice-over-IP protocol
using the Internet. I think of it more as a means to an end
than "real radio." But in the end, Amateur Radio
is about communicating and DMR does a good job of
facilitating that.  Think of it as having a
"local" repeater that any one of us can access at
any time, regardless of our physical location.
 That's why there is some excitement over the
prospect of involving the Four States QRP folks in our own
talk group.

If anyone has any questions, ask me and I will do my best to
answer.  I'm not an expert, but hey - that's
how we learn.

72,

Chas - NK8O

P.S. If you want to investigate prices, look at the most
popular radios, such as the TYT MD-380 and the Anytone
D868-uv.  For hotspots, check out the
"OpenSpot" and look on HRO for "Zumspot"
 I will stay away from others because I'm not as
familiar with them.  Personally I have the Anytone and
Zumspot. The Zumspot is based on a Raspberry Pi Zero, so the
whole thing is about 1" x 1.5" x 2.75" or
so.

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