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Dstar

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Dstar

Postby Treehugger » Thu Aug 07, 2014 2:45 am

I use Dstar for fun and I see a good use for it in a SHTF situation, so I thought I would start a discussion about Dstar.
Some of the benefits of Dstar is that it uses a smaller portion of the band allowing more conversations in the same space than FM. It sends a packet with your transmission so that you can put your name, location, or what you are looking for... or not, in your transmission. When the commercial lines are up, it allows Technician class ops to talk over long distances if both are in range of a Dstar repeater.
You can still use the Dstar radio on any of the analog systems out there, as well as you can still use it if the area loses internet, you simply loose your linking ability, much like echolink, IRLP, and such would stop working during a Communications failure.
With Dstar you can utilize D-Rats which is the program that interfaces a Dstar radio and computer together to send email, texts, or chat groups to other Drats uses if functions kind of like a bulletin board too, which would be very helpful during the loss of commercial comms.
You can call a specific station using Dstar even if that station has the volume down. In other words you can set your radio where it won't say a peep until someone is calling you specifically, then it will make some beeping noise and you can hear the person calling you. When you finish talking to them, your radio will go back silent.
I am no expert on Dstar, but if you have questions I will try my best to answer them.
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Re: Dstar

Postby HC5CA » Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:37 pm

Thanks for the write-up! A few questions... Have you tried DSTAR on simplex, yet? If so, have you noticed any increase in range over regular FM?

I've been thinking about buying a DSTAR VHF/UHF radio as I've been running digital voice (Motorola) on HF for a long time and have been impressed with it.

Another interesting use of DSTAR-type technology that I enjoy is listening to Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM)-equipped stations. Lots of international shortwave broadcasters use this method of modulation. With a cheap SDR dongle, SDR Sharp, and some free software, one can listen to "FM" sounding shortwave broadcasts with no static crashes.
73,

Steve

"Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day; teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime; give a man religion and he will die praying for a fish." :-)
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Re: Dstar

Postby Treehugger » Thu Aug 07, 2014 6:19 pm

I indeed have used it on simplex and my evaluation is that it does work better than FM on simplex. Not twice as better but marginally better. One thing is you either have a perfect copy or none at all.
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