A New DV4mini Arrives On Scene

DV4mini USB StickWireless Holdings sells leading edge modules and accessories to Ham Radio operators. Wireless Holdings has been in the digital gadget market over 40 years, and leverages a network of professional engineers to bring the latest digital gadgets to the market.

Why would anyone be interested in a DV4mini USB Stick? First I should explain that the DV4mini is a miniature, low power transceiver which you can use around the house or portable with any HT capable of one of the four digital modes. DSTAR, DMR Plus, Fusion or P25. Download a copy of the DV4mini manual for more detail.

In my case, even though  I live in an area tightly packed with analog RF, there are no digital repeaters close enough to reliably access with an HT. Unless I connect my CS700 to my roof antenna, I cannot reach the DMR TRBO repeater in my area. Visit DMR-MARC if you want to know more about TRBO for Ham Radio.

So using DMR with the DV4mini (although not TRBO) gets me connected to the digital world using DMR Plus (Hytera systems). I cannot speak about DSTAR, Fusion or P25. My only experience has been using DMR Plus. I don’t spend a lot of time with the DV4mini however I had the pleasure of having a QSO with a Ham from Japan a few weeks back.

My 70cm DV4mini has worked flawlessly since I purchased it some months ago. As I mentioned in a prior article, I built up a Raspberry Pi with the necessary software to run the DV4mini console. If anyone is interested in my notes about building up the software necessary to run the DV4mini Console and other Raspian Jessie ramblings,  stop by my homebrew Ham Radio Forum.

Recently I received an email stating that Wireless Holdings will start selling the DV4mini  in a 2 meter version. Just in time for Dayton Hamvention!

73, Gary KE2YK

 

Andy KB1OIQ’s Ham Radio Apps Update

ARRL Centennial Challenge Coin Art FINAL

IMHO, one of the things I enjoyed most about the ARRL Centennial Convention in 2014 were the Amateur Radio related forums I attended on a ton of different topics.

One of the forums I attended was Andy’s KB1OIQ’s presentation on his remastered version of Amateur Radio applications running on Ubuntu Linux.

There are a bunch of these remixes like ShackBox floating around but I really enjoyed his presentation and his dedication to his project. Back then I downloaded and ran the version available at that time. It seems that his work continues to be popular since the current SourceForge page shows that he’s had almost 700 downloads just this week.

Tux

TUX

Andy now has both a 32-bit and 64-bit version which contain a host of Ham Radio software like Fldigi, NBEMS, Gpredict and many more. Andy’s version 19 matches up with the Ubuntu 14.04.4 LTS release.

As with Andy’s past versions, the GUI desktop is customized with menus for Amateur Radio use. Andy has gone through great pains to make the distribution lightweight so that it will also run on older computer hardware.

Interested? Hop over to Sourceforge and grab Andy’s latest download!

Digital Voice? A Replacement For SSB?

According to this article, Amateur Radio is now transitioning from analog to digital voice. This is similar to the 1950’s – 60’s transition from AM to SSB it goes on to say. Suppose one company held the patent for SSB back then and forced you into their technology. Amateurs would be under their control indefinitely! As we all know, that is going on with digital voice right now.

Enter FreeDV. FreeDV is a GUI application for Windows, Linux and MacOS (BSD and Android in development) that allows any SSB radio to be used for low bit rate digital voice.

Find out more about FreeDV Here!