On the June 27, 2019 EMCOMM net, we'll try another test of sending and receiving digital messages. All you need is your radio and a computer running software that can decode digital messages. For this test, we'll be sending in MT63-2000 (or 2k) Long mode. If you are new to this, some hints are below.
What to expect
After an abbreviated voice check-in round, we will be sending a few messages in MT63-2k Long mode (select MT63-2000L in the FLDIGI "Op Mode" menu.) Net control will give a few short instruction steps and help you centre your "waterfall" signal, then a brief text message. Net control will ask for any stations who wish to confirm that it decoded OK. Finally, we will see if anyone wants to try sending a message of their own. For this test, all transmissions will be prefaced with a voice announcement so you can be ready to receive.
- Laptop or Desktop PC running decoding software such as FLDIGI.
- Tranceiver (or if you are only listening, you can even use an old scanner)
- Sound Card Interface (such as RigBlaster or Signal Link) and appropriate cabling to your transceiver. If you don't have such an interface, just use "acoustic coupling": hold your computer mic to the radio speaker to receive, and your radio mic to the computer speaker to send.
- FLDIGI or any similar software, such as DM780, Digipan, MixW, etc, but make sure it has MT63-2000 Long mode.
- Optional with FLDIGI are FLMSG and FLWRAP that will fill in and send forms, but we won't be using them in this test.
FLDIGI software can be downloaded free from: http://www.w1hkj.com . There are lots of resources there to help you set it up. If you already have other software you prefer, make sure it will decode MT63 2000 (2k) Long mode.
Our goal is to test an alternative mode that can be used to send long complicated text messages via the IRG repeater system in case of a communications emergency. Many pages of text can be sent in less than a minute, much faster than it would take to send via voice. Various other digital modes can be used in point-to-point communications on UHF, VHF or HF bands.
Any feedback or questions? Read or join our Digital Test forum on the IRG web site.