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[Articles Home]  [Add Article]  

ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal

Walt Breining (N9WB) on May 4, 2005
View comments about this article!

Bandwidth Proposal has technical errors.

As many of you know, the ARRL has proposed that the Amateur Radio spectrum usage be defined by bandwidth instead of mode. This discussion involves the part of the Bandwidth Proposal that establishes a maximum bandwidth of 3 kHz for SSB on the Amateur frequencies below 28 MHz.

After consulting the FCC definition for "Bandwidth" it became obvious that the proposed 3 kHz maximum bandwidth limit is effectively much less than 3 kHz and is extremely inadequate for clear, understandable, and natural sounding SSB communications.

Here is the definition of bandwidth in the Part 97 FCC rules.
97.3 (a) (8) (8)

Bandwidth. The width of a frequency band outside of which the mean power of the transmitted signal is attenuated at least 26 dB below the mean power of the transmitted signal within the band.

Notice that 3 kHz will not be the point where the signal starts to roll off; it is the point where the signal must be 26 dB down on each side! 26 dB is way down.

The Problem: Filters do not cut off like a brick wall. They have a sloping edge on both sides. For a filter to be no wider than 3 kHz between the -26 dB points, it will have to be much narrower than 3 kHz across the top.

A rig that has a typical 6-pole filter will have a slope ratio of 2.5 to one. This is the ratio between the width at -6 dB down and the width at -60 dB down. For such a filter to be 26 dB down between 3 kHz points, it would have to be narrower than 2 kHz across the -6 dB points and even narrower between the flat portion of the band-pass. This is assuming that there is no distortion in the RF amplifier. In other words you would have to use a 1.8 kHz filter to be legal.

Most of the rigs today will not meet this requirement. Those that do, if set up this way will sound muffled like a 1960's telephone. The signal will lack punch and give US Amateurs a disadvantage in contests and pile-ups. The audio will be less clear and more fatiguing while rag chewing.

My experience has been that intelligibility increases with bandwidth. However there is a point where the returns diminish. In my experience, this point of diminishing returns begins at about 3.5 kHz. Wider bandwidth than 4 kHz makes the audio subtly more pleasant, but the rate of increase in intelligibility and pleasantness decreases beyond 3.5 to 4 kHz. Please note that I am talking of a flat bandwidth of 3.5 kHz not a bandwidth that is 26 dB down between points separated by 3.5 kHz.

Collins started out with a filter bandwidth on SSB of 1.8 kHz and soon increased to 2.4 kHz filters to achieve better intelligibility. This was between 6 dB points. Most filters specify the bandwidth, as the distance between 6 dB points not 26 dB points.

I take pride in the way my audio sounds. Most Amateurs strive to have a good sounding station. I like a signal that is competitive in contests and DX but also a pleasant sound while rag chewing. Interest in audio quality has always been a part of Amateur Radio. To degrade and limit the quality of H.F. SSB is ill advised and will quench the enthusiasm of many Radio Amateurs. This is not about "extended sideband". This will affect everybody that uses SSB.

In my opinion, if there must be an established bandwidth at all, it should be 5 kHz per side band between 26 dB points. This would also be simpler than the current proposal.

You should write or e-mail your Division Director and let him know that you oppose the 3 kHz analog bandwidth part of the proposal. Also, you should write the League. If the Directors get a lackluster response in opposition to this proposal, it will probably be submitted to the FCC as is. If letters and e-mails in opposition barrage them, they should correct this situation.

The league is governed by a group of Division Directors. League members elect these Directors. They are required to represent us, the members. This is our League.

I can't believe that the ARRL Directors would want to be limited by such a rule in their own operation. I think that they were thinking 3 kHz flat bandwidth when authoring this proposal and misunderstand what this will do.

Please do not turn this into an ARRL bashing thread. I am an ARRL member and intend to remain so, but I will have to oppose this if it goes before the FCC. I hope that we can resolve this before it is submitted as a proposal.

Vy 73, Walter A. Breining, N9WB

Member Comments:
This article has expired. No more comments may be added.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AE1X on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Isn't the Canadian standard 6Khz for analog 'phone?

Ken
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KG4RUL on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Sounds to me like another one who has to sound like Ted Baxter when he transmits.

Dennis KG4RUL

FYI For the very young, Ted Baxter was a character on the Mary Tyler Moore Show who had one of those bassy, booming, TV Anchor voices.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K1CJS on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I disagree with the 'TED Baxter' analogy. Although not well versed on either the proposal or the ARRL proposal in general, it seems to me that the author has a point--the analog bandwidth of 3 khz does seem to be a mite narrow.

It is up to us ARRL members to let the board know of our concerns, and this one seems ligitimate to hams who do take pride in the sound of their stations.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KG8JF on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I can see it now. This will create another calling for those who, otherwise, have nothing else to do. We will call them bandwidth nazis. They will be all over the place and will start screaming when they hear signals outside the 3khz passband.

As a suggestion it's an ok proposal, but as a hard fast regulation, it would be impossible to enforce.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N9LYA on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Wider is not better...

Wider is not smarter..

Wider is certainly NOT more efficent!

If a network in the subbands at 500Khz limits can have say 5 distinct frequncies used for the narrower modes.. Say
14.101 14.103 14.105 .14.107 14.109 You can have 5 distict seperate networks running Narrow packet and pass many many times the traffic (NON internet EMAIL) between many many more stations, then you could by wiping out the entire segment with one or two WL2K stations, just to pass casual internet email, consiting of anything from ligitimate personal email messages to spam viruses and porn...... This is not to mention the uselessness of scanning by the Wl2K station and its waste of space with clients calling on freqs that have no one listening due to the PMBO being tied up on one of its scan freqs by another client...



If anyone wants to run 3KHz (regardless of if it is WL2K or eSSB, Wide packet or whatever) it should be in a definded area of the spectrum.. Not all over it...Not in the voice or cw bands, And not in the present narrow auto subbands... They should be segmented from all other narrow(er) modes..

its early in the morning I have work to do...

I hope you guys at ARRL HQ figure this out before its too late..

it is not rocket science.. Its ham radio..

73 Jerry n9lya

Edited by n9lya on May 03 2005,23:52

--------------
73 jerry n9lya
ARRL Net Manager Indiana Section
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N9LYA on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I made a typo.. I meant 500 Hz not KHz.

however if this proposal goes thru you might as well givem 500,000KHz..

73 jerry
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
This article sounds to me like a technical offshoot of nonsense propagated by Hi-Fi audio buffs. Hi Fi audio people go through almost any extereme to justify the use of wide bandwidth on crowded bands.

For example, there are web pages that show sweeps of single tone test signal and claim the single tone tests prove a certain occupied bandwidth. Anyone who tests bandwidth of commercial products probably has a hard time keeping it together while reading such technical nonsense.

http://w8ji.com/transmitter_splatter.htm

http://w8ji.com/essb_exchanges.htm

Here are the facts from a design standpoint:

1.) I can't even go out and buy a standard 3kHz SSB filter from most major filter suppliers! I'd have to custom order something that wide. Don't take my word for it, look at this link:

http://www.networksciences.com/ssb.htm


2.) The bandwidth starts where your bass ends, and ends where the treble ends. If I'm interested in clear good sounding communications, I can start my filter at 300Hz or so and end it at 2800 Hz or so up (or down). That's pretty close to optimum for communications. That means at 14300kHz I'd primarily occupy 14300.3 to 14302.8 before the signal rolled off. That's means some other lucky soul could probably use 14297 without hearing an annoying whine whine whine from my useless extended bass. Why would someone need 14300.3 to 14303.3? No one needs bass below 300 Hz unless they want to broadcast their gas releases, and there is nothing useful above 2400Hz either except spitting noise.

3.) It is quite EASY to get filters that are 30 dB down at 3kHz BW and that "sound great" on SSB. We don't need to be "band hogs" so we can play radio announcer.

4.) The author incorrectly assumes the IF filter alone sets the bandwidth, and that everything dumped into that filter is flat well outside the passband of the filter. That isn't necessary when designing nor is it true in most cases. We can easily limit audio response with a good inexpensive low pass filter before the modulation process. EF Johnson did that in 1950 with L/C components, we can do it in 2005 with significantly fewer problems.


What do I suggest?

Let's set aside a place for the guys who like to have broadcast audio. Let's have a legally enforceable bandplan or rule that still allows audiophiles to get wide, but keeps them away from people who just want to engage in communications. The whole idea behind the ARRL plan, and it is a GREAT idea, is to sort things by bandwidth. That's PERFECT for all of us if we want to minimize QRM. Wide modes and narrow modes don't mix, and the narrow space efficient modes are almost always the losers! Let's reward narrow modes, not punish them by subjecting them to wide bandwidth QRM generators.

Instead of wasting energy and time throwing out very good ideas, let's work to have a wide band segment for those who enjoy being Ted Baxter sound-alikes. Think of it like a designated parking area for people who still want to drive wide full size 1950-1970 cars to the store. That way they don't need to be banging their wideband doors against the sides of the normal cars and leaving unnecessary dents all over the band.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KE4MOB on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I think if if Mickey Mouse around the idea enough, the FCC may just decide to channelize us, and then we won't have to worry about who's transmitting what where.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N5NA on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Thanks Tom, W8JI, I always enjoy reading your well thought-out, reasoned, and educated responses on eHam.

73,

Alan N5NA
 
To Tom Rauch, W8JI  
by K0BG on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Thank you for presenting the correct technical definition. I agree with you 100%. My only comment is this. I don't think there is enough of the "Ted Baxter" types to justify a portion of the band to call their own.

Alan, KōBG
www.k0bg.com
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KZ1X on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I totally support the ARRL proposal; it's long overdue, and establishes the underpinnings for a new wave of technology innovation in HF communications.

I have informed my Division Director and vice-Director about my feelings.

Steve KZ1X/4
ARRL Life Member
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K0RFD on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The ARRL bandwidth proposal is a solution looking for a problem. It doesn't need to be done at all and will create many, many more problems than it will solve.

There are MUCH more serious issues with the ARRL proposal than just the squeeze it puts on the wideband SSBers. As Tom says, let's bandplan them into their own segment, preferably at the higher end of the bands and away from the crowded DX "windows" where they currently sit and talk about nothing but their audio. Problem solved.

Let's look at a few of the other issues.

For starters, it creates a whole new class of "Lid-O-Matic" robot stations -- the so-called "Semi Automatic" stations defined in the proposal. These are robots that have an operator sitting at the control point. Of course the operator isn't going to be able to decode PSK-31 QSOs in his head so he's going to fire up on top of people anyway. Basically, the new semi-automatic class is a license to auto-QRM any other mode anywhere on the band where the bandwidth of your signal is permitted.

I mentioned PSK-31. Although there are many more digital modes, PSK has become the most popular digital mode on HF anytime there *ISN'T* a RTTY contest going on. Tune to any of the PSK ".070" supressed carrier frequencies (particularly on 20 and 40 meters at this point in the solar cycle) and you'll see 10, 15, 20 or more QSOs going on in the space of a single voice QSO. Most times if you go looking for a RTTY QSO, you might find one or two signals, but nowhere near the activity that occurs nearly 24/7 on PSK even when you THINK the bands are closed. Yet the current ARRL bandplan is a few years behind and doesn't recognize any PSK "calling frequencies", so they don't exist. The ARRL bandwidth proposal protects narrow-band modes like CW and PSK only in the extreme lowest parts of the bands--for example, below 14.065 on 20 Meters. That means that PSKers worldwide will have to 1) pick up and move if they don't want to be QRMd by wider band modes that can't hear PSK, and 2) start crowding the CW segments that they have always respected. I don't think PSKers want to do either.

There are many more problems with the bandwidth proposal--too many to mention in this forum. Does anybody else think that mixing wideband digital with analog voice is going to be a nightmare? Because it's permitted under this proposal.

Oh, and how about the ham bands being used for encrypted communications that nobody can decode because the hardware and software are proprietary? That's permitted too.

I'm not an ARRL basher either. I'm a member and will continue to renew so my voice will be heard (note I didn't say "LISTENED TO", just "heard"). But the biggest problem with this proposal is that there were Winlink 2000 people on the committee that wrote it. Basically, it makes most of the US Amateur spectrum available to the less than 5 percent of the Ham population who use Winlink, at the expense of all the Hams who do not. The Ham Bands are not a free email service, they must support many modes of communication. The ARRL proposal never should have gotten this far, but it did and here we are.

Rather than wasting breath or keystrokes here, let me suggest that anyone whose ox is going to be gored by this proposal should write their ARRL Division Director immediately. And there are MANY oxen waiting to be gored by this proposal--the widebanders are just one group. If the ARRL continues to sell out 95 percent of active Hams in favor of a few Winlink folks and actually files a proposal with the FCC, then we must actively oppose it with the FCC. That will make ARRL once again look out of touch with its members and will have serious implications for more important battles like BPL. No gain in griping in a message forum. Let's get this stopped NOW, at the ARRL level, before we have to ask the government to step in and referee our own internal stupidity.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KE3HO on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
3kHz is perfectly adequate for good quality SSB communications. You don't need more than that. The thing that concerns me more is how may "bandwidth nazis" will tune around the band, take note of their dial reading when they first start to hear a signal, then tune across the signal and take note of when they just loose the signal, then take the difference between the dial readings and report someone for taking up 6kHz without taking into account the bandpass of their own receiver. How many of these will the FCC have to pursue, only to find out that the guy reporting them was wrong, before they give up trying to enforce the new rule? I think there were several cases of this when the whole Wide SSB issue first blew up and the FCC sent out warning notices based on reports, only to retract them later.

73 - Jim
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K5UJ on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
There are a few problems with a 3 KHz SSB bandwidth. One is that the specification is -26 db at the 3 khz points. Many hams do not seem to grasp the significance of this. With most rigs, this translates to a working bandwidth of around 2.4 to 2.6 KHz.
While I am not against some sort of bandwith limit rule per se, I think 3 KHz at -26 db is unnecessarily draconian, in that it:

A. Will be difficult for hams to insure that they are meeting it,
B. Will not guarantee an adequate supression of IMD products,
C. Will not allow for the transmission of adequate consonant energy resulting in clear radiotelephone transmissions (a condition easily corrected by allowing 3.5 KHz at -26 db),
D. Without some sort of grandfathering, will make illegal a number of current and older stock rigs,
E. Will be difficult for FCC to enforce, akin to enforcing the 55 mph speed limit.


Further, since regulations are usually intended to correct some condition or solve some problem, I have not read any communications from the ARRL with regard to exactly what problem this portion of the bandplan is supposed to solve. Is it guys running 6 KHz wide SSB? Has the ARRL furnished anyone with measurement instructions? No, rather, the only mention of this topic I am aware of, came from Dave Sumner who rather cryptically said (paraphrasing here) that no one has to worry about bandwidth, unless they "push the edge of the envelope" whatever that means. However, the ARRL isn't going to be enforcing the regulation they request. The FCC is. How will the ARRL guarantee that the bandwith will only be enforced by those who "push the edge of the envelope," and what exactly constitutes pushing the edge of the envelope?
It is laughable that such a far reaching change to the Part 97 would receive such scant justification from ARRL.

I have seen two editorials from Sumner in QST covering other aspects of the bandplan and nothing to justify the SSB bandwidth limit. This has led conspiracy theorists to suspect a hidden ARRL agenda etc. ARRL would do everyone a favor by putting their cards on the table with an explanation for the SSB bandwidth request. At this point, the only reasonable conclusion to draw from Sumner's comment is that there will be selective enforcement, the FCC employing very accurate measuring equipment no doubt, with hams ill equipped to monitor themselves, resulting in a climate of fear, uncertainty, and with OOs, self-appointed bandwith cops and vigilantes roving the bands and narcing on anyone they don't like or who "sounds wide." Is this what we want? A proposal for a bandwidth, with some wriggle room and margin for error for today and yesterday's equipment, say 3.5 or 4 KHz would solve most of these problems.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N8XD on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

My concern is different than most it seems. Mine is about interference mitigation.

Putting digital and analog signals right next to each other causes a problem. If I'm running a digital radio, I WANT the SSB guy next to me to tell me if I'm interfering. ...but I canít hear his ssb signal because my radio doesn't hear ssb.

Right now, I can see other Digital signals on the spectrum scope, but an SSB signal shows up as a faint wide wiggle, (3 kc wide spread spectrum if you will!) hardly noticeable.

I would surely want the digital and analog signals in separate areas of the band -- just so I don't have a bunch of SSB'ers reporting my digital signal as interference.

--Keith (N8XD)
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KB1GMX on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>>A rig that has a typical 6-pole filter will have a slope ratio of 2.5 to one. This is the ratio between the width at -6 dB down and the width at -60 dB down. For such a filter to be 26 dB down between 3 kHz points, it would have to be narrower than 2 kHz across the -6 dB points and even narrower between the flat portion of the band-pass. This is assuming that there is no distortion in the RF amplifier. In other words you would have to use a 1.8 kHz filter to be legal.<<


I've built filters and any commercial rig with a filter that bad is really poor. Most filters are better than that though still not brick wall unless DSP is there.
An acceptable quality SSB filter has been in the sub
2.0 shape factor with a clean passband nose and that makes a 2.4khz filter adaquate for 3khz bandpass.

HOWEVER:!

If your running the final near clipping, with incorrect bias or loading and other forms of distortion your still going to have sidebands and other spurs at near 26DBC outside of 3khz regardless of the filter used.
Therein lies the problem, often called splatter that
makes even an initially good signal look unacceptably wide.

Add insult to injury on recieve with a high gain front end running near overload.

No wonder that everyone seems wide to some.

In the end it's not the inital signal bandwidth. It's the bandwidth of all the products of distorion and overload that we need to better manage.

w8ji:

Thanks for pushing some technical sanity into this.

Allison
Kb1GMX
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WILLY on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by W8JI on May 4, 2005

"...
Here are the facts from a design standpoint:
... "

As usual, your posts are clear - i.e. most of us reading this, including me, feel that you know what you're talking about.
Thank you for taking time to share with us.


"
What do I suggest?

Let's set aside a place for the guys who like to have broadcast audio.
..."

The spirit of this idea is absolutely wonderful!
Experimenting, tweaking, fiddling, etc., run deep in the history of ham radio. To throttle that is not good. Your idea appears to embrace it. Bravo!

The only stumbling block that comes right to mind is:
Is there room for it?
It is not my intent to debate that and support a side, because I haven't really thought it through yet. It would be nice to see what others think.


I do have some questions for you, if we can get some more of your time. :)
Suppose the 3KHz proposal becomes law. How, if at all, will it affect those hams that have rigs from the '70s?
For example the TS-520S or Drake Twins?
How will it affect those with slightly more modern rigs?
Even today's radios?
Is it possible that those hams on very limited budgets will either have to find more money to spend on equipment, or be forced off the air?

Or - no effect at all?

I think it would be nice to have the facts on the above questions, so that we know what we are doing *before* we do it. I think you can provide no-nonense answers.
Thank you in advance.


73
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W6TH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
.

A better solution would be to:

Take the amount of 650,000 ham operators now listed as operational and reduce the amount to 50,000.

Make it mandatory for the 50,000 hams to become members of the ARRL. This 50,000 will be the deciding factor for the proper voting as to yes or no on the agreements.

This should make plenty of room on each and every band.

More is not better.

.:
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
http://www.arrl.org/announce/bandwidth.html

This was announced nine months ago and there's been plenty of commentary on it.

I think 3 kHz for transmission bandwidth is plenty, and even stations going out of their way to abide by this will continue to sound as crappy as they do now because that's how they want to sound. Also, no matter what the FCC does, that only impacts the U.S. and its territories, not the rest of the world.

The proposed changes to automatic station control are more onerous to me.

WB2WIK/6
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K7ZP on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Walt, N9WB did a great job laying out the article listed here.... and is doing what most in this great country do not... getting involved. Now, saying that...lets get down to the most basic part of the discussion. Like politicians, lawyers and used car salesfolks ..all of us use available data to advance our agenda or interests..we only tell the partial truths that make our point.

Walt wrote....

"A rig that has a typical 6-pole filter will have a slope ratio of 2.5 to one. This is the ratio between the width at -6 dB down and the width at -60 dB down. For such a filter to be 26 dB down between 3 kHz points, it would have to be narrower than 2 kHz across the -6 dB points and even narrower between the flat portion of the band-pass..."

Since we all know what Slope Ratio is... lets be a bit more realistic and not use the scare tactic of a SR of 2.5 to advance the "essb'ers" position.
Modern rigs, IC-7xx, FT-1000 series, TS-9xx series all have ssb filters in the region of 1.5 to 1.6 for a SR. It is more difficeut to get this SR on narrow filters but very easy on the wider ssb filters.
Now lets take a REAL look at what that means to us.
Using a 2.8KHz, (now folks, thats a good wide filter for ssb) 455KHz IF filter with a SF of 1.5 will yield approx 3.35 KHz at the 26dB down points and 4.4KHz at 60dB down, at the 6dB down points it would be 2.9KHz.
What this proposed BW limit would do to the majority of us would be nothing... however for the essb folks that all of have run across, it would make much of their expensive equipment unusable... plus wait there's more.... it would greatly reduce the number of 6-8KHz wide essb signals on our most used bands.
That also being said... there are many among us that still run far to much compression coupled with their sweep tube and solid state designed for 11 Meter amplifiers that are also verrrrry wide.
Thanx for reading my rambling.
Frank




 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N1LQ on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
A solution in search of a problem. With ever, steadily decreasing activity on the bands I really don't see the problem. Anyway, I happen think broader SSB sounds beautiful. Yet another reason why after 27 years I did not renew my memberhsip this year with the paternalistic Newington crowd .
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by G0GDU on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I read with interest the various technical comments on the proposal. If this is made mandatory, does it mean that I and the many amateurs outside of the USA, as well as US amateurs who are not members of ARRL, will have to abide by this decision?

Why does the ARRL, much like the RSGB assume that it can talk for all amateurs when not all are members?

I for one am quite happy using a 2.5KHz or even 2.2KHz SSB filters. Given the limited spectrum currently available, why should I have to do anything to make it even more difficult to operate?

John
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W6TH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
.

John asks;

Why does the ARRL, much like the RSGB assume that it can talk for all amateurs when not all are members?

John, it is called control. Anything done is not necessarily a improvement, but a control. An added attraction is called money.

The magazines should be sold by magazine companies and let the ham fraternity do the solving of problems.

Study English law as we now use it here in America.

.:
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal Reply
by G0GDU on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I read with interest the various technical comments on the proposal. If this is made mandatory, does it mean that I and the many amateurs outside of the USA, as well as US amateurs who are not members of ARRL, will have to abide by this decision?

Why does the ARRL, much like the RSGB assume that it can talk for all amateurs when not all are members?<

It doesn't matter. The ARRL isn't making any rules for members or non-members to follow; they've generated a *proposal* to the FCC, which in the U.S. and its territories, is the government agency which regulates communications including amateur radio.

What the FCC rules or doesn't rule is irrelevant anywhere outside the U.S. and its territories. Thus far, this issue has not been ruled on at all, and it might not for years to come.

WB2WIK/6
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K0RFD on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
G0GDU wrote:

> If this is made mandatory, does it mean that I and
> the many amateurs outside of the USA, as well as US
> amateurs who are not members of ARRL, will have to
> abide by this decision?

No, but you certainly will be IMPACTED by it.
Particularly by the Lid-O-Matic Pactor 3 stations that will be all over what's also being allocated as SSB phone frequencies. Both modes be operating in the 3Khz bandwidth segment of each band.

And if you use 30 meters. Because wideband digital will be permitted in the already-small 30 meter band.

Which is two more reasons why it's a bad idea.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N0AH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Here is the ARRL rule interpretations on phone bandwidth as found on pages 11-2 and 11-3 of the "THE FCC RULE BOOK, COMPLETE GUIDE TO THE FCC REGULATIONS GOVERNING AMATEUR RADIO 10TH EDITION"

"Is there any bandwidth limitation to phone transmissions? None according to the rules, except for the general requirement of "good engineering practice" (97.101(a))."

The ARRL suggest roughly 3KHz. Then they go on to address that FM, AM and double sideband need additional bandwidth.

In either case, they again state that these cases boil down to "reasonable and proper bandwidth"- don't use more than you need.

I didn't know this. I always thought it was an FCC rule at 3KHz. I always hear cops yelling this and its on license exams.

I'm glad this subject came up.

The RADIO receiving is just as much at fault as is the transmitter. Try a Yaesu FT-847 on HF SSB and you will hear SSB signals 5-8KHz wide.

Hams who run full legal with speech comps at full blown and power mics cranked up are not breaking any rules if they interpret they need to use this for reasonable bandwidth and it is within what they think is good engineering practices.

That is the current problem. But no one can modify all the gear that is out there today to just run at 3KHz. And are they out there to see their signal on a scope? Come on people.....get a grip. This is exactly why there is no rule. You can't keep the jeanie in the bottle on SSB modulation. Oh on paper it looks nice but.........

Not to bash the ARRL or anyone else wanting to do this however:

1. There is no FCC law being broken per the ARRL
2. Long distance DX requires MAXIMUM efforts at times
3. If your rig has problems with QRM, get it fixed
4. If your rig has serious problems, buy a new one
5. Write your congressman and the FCC.
6. If none of these work, dial 911 because your screwed

In other words, this is part of the hobby. Like so many things brought up, check the FCC rule book first before jumping into forums.

Haven't we changed things enough in this hobby over the past 5 years? I'm tired of it. Can't we just get along and settle down for a bit? The ARRL is always looking for something to do to stay busy. I'm glad. But quit trying to fix things that are not broken.

Can you imagine all the crap they'll come out with if the band plans change? Posters, books, an 11th edition of the FCC Rule Book, a special edition of QST, see.................it's all about $$$$$ and you thought it was over a little extra modulation on a rule that does NOT exist. BOO!
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by NL7W on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
All:

I agree with K0RFD and N1LQ. This ARRL bandwidth proposal is a solution in search of a problem. Pray tell me why we (U.S. Hams) are willing to further restrict and regulate our signals and their inherent modulation schemes?

Sometimes I believe our old-timers' neckties are a bit too tight -- cutting off blood flow to the remaining gray matter between their ears. Further GOVERNMENT regulation is not the key to a mix of historical and experimental HF operation. If additional, specific modes need addressing, such as the upcoming DSP digital modulation schemes - address them individually. Stated another way... this broad swath approach is overly restrictive, repressive, and repulsive.

Even I (a now-and-again Federal employee/contractor with NTIA frequency management experience) don't want to see such regulation. Our self-policing or "peer review" processes work on all but the most stubborn individuals. Riley seems willing to tackle the rest, right?

Geesh... let's loosen up the neckties, as well as our on-the-air operating regulations. At the same time, let's tighten up our exams and exam processes for the mid and high-level licenses (General and Extra Class), while at the same time developing some kind of "Communicator Class" that exposes our Nation's youth to the hobby/service.

I am:

Tired of further, restrictive federal regulation in any form...

and

Wanting a "General" or "Extra Class" ham ticket to mean something again...

73 de Steve, NL7W -- A proud ARRL Member.
Palmer, Alaska
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W6TH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
.
What the FCC rules or doesn't rule is irrelevant anywhere outside the U.S. and its territories. Thus far, this issue has not been ruled on at all, and it might not for years to come.
===============================================

I say before it is submitted to the FCC, that the issue should be brought before the membership for approval of "all" amateur radio operators.

Who is the ARRL to overlook its membership and the "all" of our ham fraternity?

I believe in fair practices for one and "all".

Bear in mind that the ARRL are a publisher of magazines company and nothing more.

.:
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AA4PB on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
First you have to realize there is a problem with the present rules. If your interests are only in SSB (and perhaps CW) then you may think that there is no problem. The present rules do a fine job of protecting SSB at the expense of newer digital modes - or so you think.

If you think that digital and analog modes don't mix, stand by. Digital voice is on its way and under the current rules it must go into the phone bands. And guess what? Under the present rules there is no bandwidth limit. Digital voice can legally use 6KHz, 10KHz or even greater bandwidth. The present system is 3KHz because the developers were sensible and voluntarily limited the bandwidth to that of SSB. Kill the ARRL's proposal (which imposes a 3KHz limit) and you may be opening the phone bands to some very wide digital signals. Pactor robots may be the least of your problems.

Personally I think that automatic operation (including semi-automatic) of any mode should be limited to special sub-bands. That is not a bandwidth regulation issue, it is a "type of operation" issue. No local control operator present then it belongs in the automatic control sub-band. The only reason that this issue has come up with the bandwidth proposal is that the proposal permits signals of like bandwidth to use the same frequencies, regardless of transmission content (which actually make a whole lot of sense). Why should it be okay to use 3KHz (or more) of spectrum to transmit your voice but not to transmit text or other high speed data?

Actually the current rules permit high speed data stations, regardless of bandwidth, throughout the CW/data bands as long as they are not fully automatic stations. You are not hearing it now for the most part because people are following the voluntary band plan.

There may be a way to specify a bandplan coordinating council or some such thing and put some teeth into the bandplan WITHOUT making it a rule of law. The problem with codifying rules in detail is that it is nearly impossible to get them changed, even when they become outdated and no longer apply to the present situation. We need to minimize the amount of FCC regulation in order to have the flexibility of making adjustments as the situation and technology change. That is the aim of the ARRL's proposal. Implementing that proposal along with a good bandplan would be ideal *provided* that you can get people to follow the bandplan. I think history demonstrates the *for the most part* hams do follow band plans pretty well. Yes, there are exceptions. We need to find a way to deal with those exceptions rather than making the whole community pay the price of detailed regulations that soon become outdated and restrictive.

Leave the regulations unchanged and in the future you could find the phone bands filled with wide band digtial voice signals and the CW bands filled with wide band semi-automatic data stations.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KE4ZHN on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
For SSB, I feel that theres no need to run over 3kc of bandwidth. The egomaniacs running extra wide filters and splattering over processed crappy audio just want to be a DJ or as some mentioned "Ted Baxter".(maybe they really meant Glenn Baxter?...oh yeah, same thing!) Many of these types sound like they are transmitting from inside a sewer pipe or they use so many boxes in front of the rig they begin to sound like the "Cylons" from the old Battlestar Galactica show. If this is how they want to sound, I dont care, but keep that mess within 3kc please. If you need more bandwidth than 3kc, try AM or FM.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N4ZOU on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
There's another side of this proposal that everyone should look at. The so-called "Semi-automatic" unattended station. This part of the proposal was introduced so that a digital mode store and forward mail service could operate using an unattended station. With this bandwidth versus mode proposal a very interesting possibility that for now has been illegal for use with phone mode operation but would become legal if the FCC accepts the new ARRL proposal. Namely, the use of a VMB. http://www.tech-faq.com/vmb-voice-mail-box.shtml . The software is readily available and some of it is free. No property hardware is required and as the interface circuits required for use between the computer used as the VMB controller and VMB software and a typical amateur radio transceiver consist of a sound card interface and old style phone patch and are easy to obtain or even buy off the shelf. The amateur radio operator accessing the VMB on the VMB net frequency might need a DTMF pad to access the semi-automatic unattended VMB net controller but using some of the high-end VMB software and modern voice modem computer cards with voice recognition no additional hardware would be required. All the amateur radio operator would need to do to access there internet mail or link to a Cell phone or landline phone is to simply follow simple directions to press a DTMF key or say simple words the VMB controller understands. Using a Icom IC-756 PRO II, homebrew sound card interface, homebrew 10 minute voice ID, 160 MHz computer with a 56K voice modem, and free for non-commercial use VMB software I was able to setup and test a semi-automatic amateur radio capable VMB station. The station was attended for all on air testing. Successful store and forward voice mail operation was easy as was dialing out and connecting to Landline and Cell phones as well. I even had a friend generate a text message that was sent to the VMB via the Internet and then the VMB converted the text message to a very understandable voice message. This would allow net and traffic operation on HF frequency's 24/7. I am sure you can figure out the impact this would have on the amateur radio bands! Be careful what you wish for, you might actually get it!
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
For those concerned about older rigs meeting specs, my 30 year old Drake T4X's and 40 year old Collins are 10-20 dB better for IM3 and IM5 than a new IC-7800.

If anyone needs to seriously worry, it's manufacturers that have no regard for occupied bandwidth of transmitters. It took Yaesu years and years to change the value of a few components to reduce keyclicks. SSB IM distortion is actually pretty bad on most radios, but it will squeak by the proposed regulations.

It is time to get some realistic technical standards. If someone has a rig that can't meet those very easy to meet requirements, they can always use it in a wide bandwidth part of the band. If someone's mind is fixed on the idea he wants to run ESSB, not make any attempt to have a reasonable BW, or wants to run a rig that can't meet slack requirements why should others suffer? We could have easily met that standard in 1955 (and many old rigs meet it), it isn't any penalty to meet it in 2005! Should we be allowed to run spark transmitters because we collect them?

The idea a defined BW limitation will increase complaints isn't likely to be true long term. Segmentation by BW or clear BW definitions will make things better overall as time progresses, instead of the not having any definition of what is good. Having a clear guideline is always better than not having any guideline at all. We've needed a standard for a long time to force manufacturers to spend the extra dollar or two needed to narrow up signals, and rest assured it won't be a major expense to make big improvements!!

As others have pointed out, the big problems are with automated operation and other areas not related to technical or bandwidth standards. Operating standards (people) are the real worry, not technical standards. Give everyone a chance to cause problems, and a few people will take advantage of that just because they can.

Bandwidth is a non-issue, and everyone has the potential to sound fine with the 3kHz standard. Anyone who can't maintain 3kHz at minus twenty some dB really doesn't deserve to be in the mainstream crowd. That spec is actually not very tight.

The real issue is if they have carefully thought through all the mode interactions carefully, and can they have bandplans with teeth to prevent "I don't give a crap about you as long as I operate the way I want" QRM.

If they are depending on bandplans for interference mitigation, there have to be teeth in the bandplans AND we all have to have an equal vote. They aren't the ARRL's frequencies, they belong to us as a group whether members or not. I'll go along with what the majority wants to do, and the majority isn't one or two people at HQ.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W6TH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
.
All this information posted is getting all no-where.

ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal should have been approved or not approved in Newington, CT., and not here on EHAM where it will do "all" nothing.

The horse got out and now is the time to close the door.

American hams, arrgh.

.:
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N0AH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Buy your friend an FT-847. You too can then watch your 3KHz modulation from let's say your Icom 756 Pro III be 6-8KHz on his new rig!!! So what did you do wrong? You bought your friend an FT-847!

Paul
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AA4PB on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Oh, I disagree. I think the discussion is good. It makes people aware of the issues and provides a chance to see other people's points of view. Some of the information discussed does indeed make its way back to ARRL by those who submit comments to them. The other option is to just sit back and let the ARRL make the decisions for you with no input and without knowing what is going on.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W9AC on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W8JI:

"Let's set aside a place for the guys who like to have broadcast audio. Let's have a legally enforceable bandplan or rule that still allows audiophiles to get wide, but keeps them away from people who just want to engage in communications."

"Reasonable Accommodation" is perfectly fine with me Tom. There's no reason why Hi-Fi SSB cannot be allocated on a single calling frequency like the existing AM calling windows on one or two bands (e.g., one each on 75M and 20M to accommodate change of band conditions through the day).

I do agree with Walt that more work is required as to the strict bandwidth limit of 3 kHz for SSB. Here's the problem: As soon as the FCC enforcement bureau receives just one complaint, they are obligated to follow-up on it and require the operator to respond. The accused operator, having to reasonable means of accurately checking bandwidth, has no defense to the FCC's claim when a written response is required.

The days where the FCC conducted "due-diligence" is long gone. Apparently, Mr. Hollingsworth still feels compelleld to issue Advisory and Warning Notices before ensuring that his facts are straight. Once bandwidth is codified, he will be a very busy man, indeed.

If we're going to codify bandwidth limits, the average operator needs a reasonable and cost-effective means of monitoring and documenting his or her bandwidth. Period. I strongly disagree with the League's position that in the real world of operating, no bandwidth monitoring will be required. Receiving just one Advisory Notice from the FCC by way of a single complaint from an overzealous operator will be enough to change anyone's mind.

-Paul, W9AC
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA6BFH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
It would be truly wonderful if more Hamís had an appreciation for how their modulated signals are expressed on an ďinstant-to-instantĒ basis, for both the linear (and how linear is linear?), as well as the non-linear modes.

They donít, so in that regard W8JIís proposal makes good sense! Itís like lanes on a highway. If drivers properly stay between the lines, they donít have to understand all of the finer points in the way an expressway is supposed to work!

Also, for those that want to use wider bandwidths (linear or not) we have a great deal of spectrum available for it, so they can sound like Glen whoever! Someone asked that very question but, oddly enough, the immediate reference got back to which typical band? I will give you a hint, its 350 KHz wide.

There is a great deal of spectrum where your modulation index could be a great deal wider than 350 KHz, and no harm would be done!

I too wonder about the implications of ďautomaticĒ control!
 
K0RFD is correct  
by WB4M on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W8JI and others who take the knee-jerk "Ted Baxter Syndrome" don't have a clue. It's not about SSB ops wanting ultra-wide bandwidth. It's about the ARRL's red-hot love affair with Winlink2000. What a coincidence, both WL2K and SSB are 3khz wide...so W8JI, when the modes are separated by bandwidth and not mode, guess who will be crashing your SSB QSOs?
This entire thing is to turn Winlink loose so it can run amok over ALL parts of the bands. Just think.. your next SSB QSO will be squashed by a Winlink Robot passing email to and from NON-HAMs!! Get it now?
Only those who are into Winlink will support this entire pile of BS.
 
RE: K0RFD is correct  
by WB2WIK on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>If we're going to codify bandwidth limits, the average operator needs a reasonable and cost-effective means of monitoring and documenting his or her bandwidth. Period. I strongly disagree with the League's position that in the real world of operating, no bandwidth monitoring will be required. Receiving just one Advisory Notice from the FCC by way of a single complaint from an overzealous operator will be enough to change anyone's mind.

-Paul, W9AC<

Counterpoint: We've had spectral purity limits codified for many years, and very few amateurs have any way to measure this, either. It's taken for granted that certificated commercial equipment meets the standards if properly operated, and that's about it. Not much wiggle room for improperly operated or homebrew stuff, but then nobody's enforcing the standards.

Not that I'm for the ARRL Proposal, overall I'm not. But the BW standards in the proposal are reasonable and if that was the entire proposal, I'd be for it. Unfortunately, there's more to this and I'm against the automation provision unless it's drastically altered.

WB2WIK/6




 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K5UJ on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
<<<Counterpoint: We've had spectral purity limits codified for many years, and very few amateurs have any way to measure this, either. It's taken for granted that certificated commercial equipment meets the standards if properly operated, and that's about it. Not much wiggle room for improperly operated or homebrew stuff, but then nobody's enforcing the standards. >>>


Sophistry.
A. No one is experimenting with varying their spectral purity intentionally.
B. No one is proposing different spectral purity limits for different modes.

WB2WIK's earlier link to an ARRL press release was to one that contained nothing really of substance on the SSB bandwidth limit. Again, I have heard of no ARRL official publicly engaging with anyone on this aspect of their bandplan proposal. No comments to justify this. No explanation as to why this is being included in the plan, or how and why 3 KHz was chosen for SSB and 9 KHz was chosen for AM(DSB carrier). Under these circumstances it doesn't take much to start picturing the ARRL as some sort of agency in a X-Files episode.

By the way, in the interests of full-disclosure, which I recommend a few other people who have posted here engage in, I freely admit to being biased: 1. I do enjoy reasonably wide sideband. I don't have to have earth rumbling bass. I don't have to have 6 KHz hissing. But I do think going from 100 hz up to around 3 or 3.5 KHz is not going to spell the end of the world, and if someone wants to go wider on a quiet band and narrow up when things get crowded, what is this going to do--melt down everyone's antennas? Please people, let's get our noses out of joint over something important. 2. I am an ARRL Life Member.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W3OZ on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Iíd rather sound like Ted Baxter than Edith Bunker. There is a reason broadcasters sound like they do, it is pleasant to listen to. Screaming into a toilet paper role like a little girl may be your pleasure but not mine. If you donít like audio with bass in it, that is your privilege, but donít make me sound like my testicles have not dropped yet. The peak frequency of my voice measured with a good quality studio mic and a spectrum analyzer is just a little over 100Hz, so rolling everything off under 300Hz would be artificially altering my natural voice.

Where are all these ESSB, Hi-Fi fanatics that are interfering these days? 14.178 is empty most of the day. Most of the guys who used to run wide on 20 meters have moved on or stopped doing it because they just got tired of the harassment so where is the problem that this proposal is going to fix? If you think by passing more rules, forcing audio guys to run real narrow is going to keep us from running bass, you had better think again. It will just make us sound worse in your opinion, because we will not have enough bandwidth to balance the bass out.

If all you are interested in is good quality narrow communication, then stay on CW or a cell phone and get it over with. Just sign me as Ted Baxter.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by NL7W on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W8JI said: "If someone's mind is fixed on the idea he wants to run E-SSB, not make any attempt to have a reasonable BW, or wants to run a rig that can't meet slack requirements why should others suffer?"

With reasonable E-SSB operations, are others suffering? Or, are they just complaining -- because they can? I listen to the E-SSB crowd now and again, and I don't hear normal SSB bandwidth stations, similar to my own, complaining that these guys are grievously interfering with on-going adjacent QSO's. Besides, I do have a vfo, and even a band-switch.

Let's leave these guys alone. Through FCC and peer review, these experimental E-SSB guys have suffered, too. Haven't reasonable accommodations been reached over time, or are the old-timers too rigid? I firmly believe a majority of the E-SSB operations are acceptable to most hams.

I'll say it again: if this ARRL proposal becomes law, it would impose what I call "broad swath" tactics. A regulation that would hurt and limit our service.

As for new digital technologies, address them through dedicated sub-bands -- where our service can facilitate the advancement of DSP-based digital mod/demod formats. And yes, these sub-bands should remain somewhat separate from their analog counterparts.

Just like "DX IS", there "IS" enough bandwidth for everyone's interests. Therefore, this uncecessary and overly restrictive regulatory proposal is not in our collective best interest.

NL7W
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!


>WB2WIK's earlier link to an ARRL press release was to one that contained nothing really of substance on the SSB bandwidth limit.<

Um, that's not true. You didn't scroll down far enough. After the K1ZZ letter, was the entire proposal which goes on for several pages and goes into great detail regarding the SSB bandwidth limit issue.

WB2WIK/6
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AA4PB on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Right now we have a 500Hz bandwidth limit for fully automatic digital stations. Is the FCC putting them off the air, demanding that they have a means to accuratly measure their bandwidth? No. The assumption is made that if you are running Pactor I or II and have your transmitter properly adjusted (i.e. not splattering) then you are within the 500Hz bandwidth. The same will be true for SSB stations and the 3KHz bandwidth requirement.
 
RE: K0RFD is correct  
by WA0LYK on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Man o man I can't believe all the technical bull crap being thrown out here that is wrong.

N9WB is EXACTLY correct in his assessment. The ARRL proposal says "maximum of 3 kHz" and has no definition associated with it. One is left to assume the existing Part 97 rules as quoted by Walter is what they are planning on. The ARRL's claim that you won't have to measure your RF bandwidth is only contained in their so called discussion of the proposal and not in the proposal itself. You know the FCC isn't going to put out a regulation like this without some kind of measurement criteria and since they already have one for commercial transmitters they are likely to propose that.

Keep in mind this is versus current rules that only require you operate with good amateur practice and not cause interference. This means it is up to you where and when you operate to minimize interference if your transmitter isn't quite up to snuff or if you want to test your new homebrew transmitter in DSB mode on 10 meters with your neighbor and the band is closed. Not n the future with this proposal.

I do believe the folks that wrote this proposal have the same incorrect assumptions as many of the posters here do. Guys and gals, your RF bandwidth is much, much wider than your audio bandwidth. Some you need to go back to the books and learn about odd order intermodulation products. And you have them. Every transmitter that uses a mixer or balanced modulator has them, I SAY AGAIN, EVERY SSB TRANSMITTER HAS IMD PRODUCTS. IMD isn't like an STD, you can't stay clean if you keep your rig monogamous.

For you ARRL members, you need to go look at the extended tests they run on various rigs. Their tests are set up to vary the output level of a two tone generator, the microphone level, and the drive level to see what the minimum IMD is that can be attained. There are both old and currently produced transmitters that do not meet the existing Part 97 rules for 3 kHz bandwidth on various bands. AND THIS IS LOOKING AT THE BEST THEY CAN DO.

The ARRL tests use two tones of 700 and 1900 Hz. If you want to make any comparison, consider using these as the minimum and maximum frequencies you should input to your transmitter. This would hardly be considered high fidelity audio and even then you might be the lucky owner of a transmitter that just won't meet the proposed rules.

For those of you dying to know, what this means is that there are 3rd order products at 2F1-F2 and 2F2-F1. That is,at -500 and +3100 for an RF bandwidth of 3.6 kHz. If these products aren't down to -26 db you're screwed.and that's with an effective audio bandwidth of 1200 Hz!

Now I am not saying the hi-fi guys don't have even wider RF footprints, they do. However, this proposal as written will affect you also, not just the hi-fi guys.

This doesn't even address the problems of us who like to homebrew will have. A spectrum analzyer just isn't in the future unless the lottery comes through!
 
RE: K0RFD is correct  
by G7HEU on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
ATTN WA0LYK

In my (humble)opinion your post makes sense. I think I now understand what you State-side guys are liable to with the much discussed band width proposal.

Thanks,

Steve.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I'm relatively late to this discussion, but the argument over wide SSB is just silly. There needs to be no rule against it as there are already rules in place to handle it. If there is room in the band, there's not a thing wrong with it, technically or ethically. If the band is crowded, an ESSB'er should either lower the BW to 3k or QRT. In fact, in most cases, we do. I'd rather go for a walk, read a book, etc. than try to have a decent rag-chew/roundtable QSO during peak contest/QRM type band conditions (unless I'm in the contest!!). There is no technical reason for the limit, and most that are "for" it haven't taken the time to understand what they're missing and why it's so pleasant to be part of it. You won't be able to tell with your rig's stock speaker using the standard 2.4k filter, period. I don't understand why folks that don't take the initiative of doing what it takes to hear it are so steamed about it. We generally take up less space than AM'ers, and sound as good or better. I run ~4k SSB normally, but can go wider if I choose. Here's one thing you all need be concious of, though. If 2.5k SSB gets implemented, you'll see a whole lot of us on AM taking 8 or 9k of BW just so we can get 4 or 4.5k of audio!! I know, because I'm one of 'em. The bottom line is a 2.5k BW restriction will force a lot of us to use 30-50% *MORE* BW!! Doesn't make a lot of sense now, does it? I know not everyone will do this, but I know many that will, since they already are. I use AM fairly often as well as SSB (and other modes).

The only other thing I'd like to make sure everyone here knows is that 4 or 6k SSB is *NOT* splatter. Someone here made that statement and it just isn't true. The "splatter" I hear most is during contest weekends. Yes, it happens during other times too, but it by far more prevalent during a contest. I'm not trying to turn this into the old "contester vs. rag-chewer" debate, but it is fact. And those guys mostly run very narrow audio, but over do it a bit.

I'd just like to see this settled with the rules we have, not make up new ones that will make things worse. To me, the biggest problem is courtesy. I'm sick and tired of being in a QSO (at any BW) and having folks plop themselves down 1.5k away because they've "been on this frequency for 20 years". People are so afraid of moving 1 or 2 kc, they lose their minds. I generally hang with a bunch that in the evenings (on 75m) just finds an open 6+ kc space and starts a roundtable (after asking if the freq is in use). 9 times out of 10, somebody will either start calling someone else that isn't there on frequency or in our passbands, or comes on complaining about us being "wide" (usually without an ID). One of the funniest times this happened is when we were 2k *BELOW* them on LSB. They didn't even understand that we couldn't get out of their passband no matter what BW we were using!! It just never ceases to amaze me. Other times people just start QRM'ing us with obscene and offensive comments, noises, etc. Totally inexcuseable.

I guess I'll leave it at that for now, but let's just *THINK* a little. Ever heard this: Who should move if a frequency is called into question (as in propogation changes, for example)? The answer is YOU!! As in all of us. Maybe a little courtesy is too much to ask...

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: K0RFD is correct  
by WA0LYK on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
WB2WIK/6

Um, that's not true. You didn't scroll down far enough. After the K1ZZ letter, was the entire proposal which goes on for several pages and goes into great detail regarding the SSB bandwidth limit issue.

-------------

Just where did you see anything about how the SSB bandwidth limit would be measured let alone any discussion about how it was arrived at. All I see is that the "maximum bandwidth" column in the table shows 3 kHz.

Tell me what paragraph describes the measurement techniques to be used to measure the "maximum bandwidth".
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N6PEH on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I think they should leave things the way they are. I would like to see their new licensing structure move forward. I'll go from Advanced to Extra, overnite. I had to pass my 5 wpm to become a tech, had to pass 13 wpm to be a General/Advanced, getting something free would be nice.

This bandwidth issue is ridiculous!
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K1DA on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Despite W8JI's claim that 3kc filters are not available, this inferior URI grad found a whole bunch
of them at the INRAD site, even a filter for the 75S3B
series of 30 years ago, BTW Collins offered a factory
3kc filter as an option in that series of S lines. They are greatly sought after.

Seems to me the ARRL is no longer a group of radio amateurs but a group of professional policy makers and we already have a whole federal government filled with bureaucrats of that ilk.
We know the result.
 
RE: K0RFD is correct  
by AC0H on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The problems I have with the proposal.

1. Store and forward PactorIII/Winlink robots would be allowed to fire up ANYWHERE in the "wide" section of the band.

2. The proposal does nothing to outlaw semi-auto and automatic operation on HF. I have no problem with Pactor/Winlink operations as long as you don't QRM ongoing QSO's. With the current state of technology that's not possible. Too many times I've been in an enjoyable PSK QSO when one of these stations fires up in the current digital sub band. You can pretty much forget about about finishing the QSO.

3. The ARRL's outright arrogance concerning the whole proposal. No input was sought from anyone other than WinLink. Yes, there were other representatives on the committee, experts I'd dare say. They got run over, either forced off the committee or marginalized. A dissenting opinion wasn't even allowed to be presented to the BoD much less published to the membership. No other input was sought, other than a feeble attempt at gathering opinions which weren't to be considered anyhow.

4. Why is there, among some Hams, this overriding need to turn Ham Radio into some poor, slow, approximation of the internet for it to be considered cutting edge technologically? Why does this so called "technical innovation" have to occur in the most crowded and used part of our spectrum? The VHF and microwave bands are comparatively all but empty.

Tom, W8JI, makes some good technical points and if we could trust the digital ops to make sure their not QRMing anybody I'd be happy with it but they can't so I'm not.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA1RNE on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

The ARRL strikes again doing what they now do best; pumping out the beaurocracy at 40 over S9....

Lots of good points here: John, G0GDU makes one of the better ones. If the rest of the world doesn't comply with U.S. standards for signal bandwidth, you just don't engage in QSO's with U.S. amateurs?? Benny Hill and David Letterman would have some choice one-liners for the brains who thought up this crap.

Remember folks, this is not commercial or military communications with life or death consequences if communications are not state of the art - so long as we don't interfere with other services. That's it, pure and simple.....

Meanwhile, ham radio spectrum is currently UNDER-UTILIZED, so what is the big fuss about bandwidth??

I have no intention in hijacking this post, but if you wan to talk about bandwidth, you have to talk about UNUSED SPECTRUM. Everyone that's so quick to jump on the Bandwidth Wagon (and jump all over audio enthusiasts) needs to start taking a hard look at the amount of under-utilized CW spectrum. I welcome the audio enthusiasts; at least they have an interest in technical innovation and put the bands to good use.

At the same time, how many hams run Boatanchors on AM? Probably less than 0.5% of the ham population.

"Regressing" back to the good old days of CROWDED bands would actually be refreshing and give us a good reason to break out those fancy DSP equipped receivers and put them to good use.

In reality, there is no fuss; just a bunch of guys trying to hold together an OLD organization that is having a very difficult time justifying its existence.

Extreme times result in extreme measures, and this bandwidth proposal is just that, EXTREME.

I haven't paid ARRL dues for ~22 out of the last 33 years and now I know I made the right decision. These guys are focusing on the wrong issues. Instead, the ARRL needs to shift their focus on inventing new ways for amateurs to provide a real service to local communities and nations, not a bunch of weekend warriors moaning and groaning about nothing and "protecting our interests".

73, WA1RNE

 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by NB3O on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Forget about the bandwidth issues for a minute and explore a couple comments from previous posters:
"interference mitigation"
"proposed changes to automatic station control are more onerous"
OK, your in a PSK31 roundtable and an automatic station fires up on you. Do you type "PLEASE QSY" and hope the other guy is decoding you (if he is even present at the rig)? Oh yeah, carrier detection algorithms were supposed to have prevented this......
Another scenario; your chatting with your buds on SSB. A Pactor III station fires up spewing S-9 intermod into your passband (your using a nice cascaded set of INRAD 1.8kHz filters, but it ain't good enough). Do you say "Please QSY, old man" or practice making a buzzing noise with your lips and hope the digital modem at the interfering station can correlate?
Dave K1ZZ encourages us to be tolerant of each other's activities. That's good. But how do you mitigate interference from incompatible modes?
Here's a "compatible mode" example: When the FT5XO expedition obliterated my ongoing PSK31 QSO on 7070 (+20 over), I was able to listen to them on SSB and worked them split for a good contact. Yeah, I know I participated to encourage them to bust up the frequency for a little while, but "when handed a lemon, make lemonaide" (or something similar).
"Incompatible mode" example: A few of us were chatting on 20M Sunday afternoon. All of a sudden, a bunch of S-8 hash showed up. We QSY'd up the band and I kept the second receiver on the hash. Eventually I recognized an SSB signal and caught the tail end of some guy explaining adjustments to his AOR digital voice modem to some other undreadable station. Seems they had QSY'd to our frequency without listening in the "clear" on SSB first before engaging the modem.
Hey, maybe I can email these guys using WL2K and ask them to QSY..........
Now before you flame me that since the beginning of time the old spark gap guys hated the new CW guys, who hated the new AM phone guys, who hated the new SSB guys, who hated anyone else rag chewing or contesting on their frequency, the point to remember is that all of these modes are easily copied with the same basic rig. And PSK31, the MSK variations, packet, RTTY, etc can all be copied through the computer sound card with inexpensive software (some free) using this same basic rig.
Enter the new day of private source protocol and $700 modems. I guess I'll have to keep a few of these on hand to tell the new guys to PSE QSY.......Just a thought.
73
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KC9OD on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The ARRL is probably backing the AOR digital modem deal just like they pushed the NBVM fiasco in 1979 (another SINGLE SOURCE vocoder type gizmo). Any AMATEUR voice modem should be open-sourced so all interested can build it, try it, and improve it.
The history of the ARRL is one of pushing for onerous regulations whenever the League oldtimers feel the bands are crowded or MAYBE just whenever some one with an inside track has a new modulation scheme to sell. The League seriously injured amateur radio in the 1960 and discouraged a lot of young people who could have contributed, and for many years the ARRL steadfastly ignored or discounted all non-ARRL hams as not being good hams. The organization should make itself attractive to would-be members ,not demand the members toe the party line.
It has been my personal opnion for several years that Riley is not the best thing that ever happened to ham radio and for 20 years I have disliked the way Sumner runs his publishing business,oops, I meant the ARRL. For instance, splitting the technical articles and conteasting out of QST into new seperate magazines means those who read QST miss out and will perhaps never see that article that would have kindled a new interest.

I fail to see the need for the new bandwidth rules as proposed and believe seperate voice, digital and cw band segments are just as reasonable as maintaining seperate freeways,bike paths, and horse trails. There is no need to ban all the proven methods unless one has an agenda such as selling new rigs.
The public service agencies are spending a fortune in tax money on new digital radios that supposed offer wondrous improvements(mainly in how tight the management control will be over the communication,including the denial of monitoring to the American public!). The much touted crystal clear communication is achieved with an enormous network of linked sites ,and there is no particular reason I can see that prohibited such site linking on the existing type of equipment. But selling an entire nation new radios involves a lot of money.

Our rigs of the past several decades do a fine job on ssb,cw,and "gasp" even am ;while I don't deny anyone's right to buy a new car or radio, I resent the hell out of those that demand I also be forced to buy one or radio. Forced is the key objection.


FYI, I have been a ARRL member for 33 years,Life since the mid 70s.(Saved a bundle on QST subscriptions.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KE3HO on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
WB4M said: "This entire thing is to turn Winlink loose so it can run amok over ALL parts of the bands."

Exactly. Its all about Winlink and making lots of room for it at everyone else's expense. ARRL is using the "bandwidth issue" as a smoke screen so they can use all of the HF phone bands for their idiodic Winlink system.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WN4DW on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
YES! The bandwidth proposal is a wonderful idea! Well past it's time. Please implement it ASAP. Now if I only beleived there was some way to enforce it.
It will be like seat belts. Wear them when the cop might see you, or when you feel like it.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W1DUD on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Sounds to me like another one who has to sound like Ted Baxter when he transmits.

Dennis KG4RUL

......So what does Hi-Fi 2 meters sound like???
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by VE7RF on May 4, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The rules in Canada state ANY MODE, ANY WHERE, ON ANY BAND.... max bandwidth, regardless of mode is 6 khz...... except 30m (1 khz). 10m , we are allowed 20 khz BW.

There are NO phone sub bands in Canada. Wide band ESSB down on 3506 is just fine..... except we would never do it.

What you fellows should push for, is to dump the stupid incentive licensing, get on track with the other 321 countries in the world, and expand your phone bands right to the bottom of the dial. Seems kinda stupid to me, that CW can operate on 3840..... but 3840 ops can't go down to say 3580..... even though there was excatly 1 cw station on the whole band late last night!!

later... Jim, VE7RF
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by VE7RF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hi Fi audio people go through almost any extereme to justify the use of wide bandwidth on crowded bands.

### The bands are not crowded, except by brain dead contester's... making thousands of useless qso's.








2.) The bandwidth starts where your bass ends, and ends where the treble ends. If I'm interested in clear good sounding communications, I can start my filter at 300Hz or so and end it at 2800 Hz or so up (or down). That's pretty close to optimum for communications. That means at 14300kHz I'd primarily occupy 14300.3 to 14302.8 before the signal rolled off. That's means some other lucky soul could probably use 14297 without hearing an annoying whine whine whine from my useless extended bass. Why would someone need 14300.3 to 14303.3? No one needs bass below 300 Hz unless they want to broadcast their gas releases,

### Tom, have you even heard ESSB ?? Hear it just once, with wide enough filters to actually copy it.... and have your TCXO dead on the 20 mhz wwv, and feed the result into a 200 w stereo amp.... and I guarantee, you will NEVER go to crap audio ever again.



and there is nothing useful above 2400Hz either except spitting noise.

#### Pure BS, and you know it.. The Articulation Index (AI), skyrockets with increaed BW. Just look at the various charts of BW vs AI vs S/N , in ssb engineering texts... like "SSB sytems and circuits" , and you can see for yourself. We just ran yet another series of tests, where the top end of this fellows Ten-tec jupiter was increased in small increments from 2400 hz..... all the way to 3900 hz. Above 3300 hz, the CLARITY shot through the roof. Unless you can get the top end ABOVE at least 3300-3800, the consonants will get .. "crushed".

### With weak sigs in the noise on 75 m,,,, wider wins out every time... hands down. Sigs go from q-3, to q-5 every time. I'm surprised you dx types have not figured this out yet.

### None of us ESSB ops EVER use phonetics.




3.) It is quite EASY to get filters that are 30 dB down at 3kHz BW and that "sound great" on SSB. We don't need to be "band hogs" so we can play radio announcer.

#### Sez who...you ? We only have 2 things with ssb.... audio in.... and audio out. Why listen to fatiguing crap audio hr after hr, is beyond me.



4.) The author incorrectly assumes the IF filter alone sets the bandwidth, and that everything dumped into that filter is flat well outside the passband of the filter. That isn't necessary when designing nor is it true in most cases. We can easily limit audio response with a good inexpensive low pass filter before the modulation process. EF Johnson did that in 1950 with L/C components, we can do it in 2005 with significantly fewer problems.

### In the real world Tom, we use stuff like behringer EQ's....and insert "chop off filter's"..... then My pair of inrad 6 khz filters I installed in my MK-V... can be used at any BW.


What do I suggest?
### Here's my suggestion. Get with the program and dump incentive licensing. Get rid of sub bands all together. Make it any mode, any where... like the rest of the world has.... then the bands would be totally FLEXIBLE and ELASTIC.

### Suggestion #2 is to dump the brain dead contester's... who accomplish nothing, but make thousands of useless qso's.

#### You dx'ers wanna run split,,,, gobble up double the BW, then along comes a dx station, who sez.... "listening 7250-7260"...... now we are tying up 10 khz at top of band.... and 3khz at bottom of the band... real smart.


Let's set aside a place for the guys who like to have broadcast audio. Let's have a legally enforceable bandplan

### dream on. Is this so Tom can enjoy a noise floor on 1822 khz of -137 dbm ?



or rule that still allows audiophiles to get wide, but keeps them away from people who just want to engage in communications. The whole idea behind the ARRL plan, and it is a GREAT idea, is to sort things by bandwidth.

### The ARRL plane is DEAD ! They have been informed about this new mode called ESSB..... and were also informed unless they want another incentive licensing debacle (where they lost 1/2 their mrmbership). Sumner didn't have a clue what ESSB even was, nor the fact it has really taken off all over the planet.

### Both yaesu and Icom have embraced ESSB, have seen the writing on the wall, and you can expect a whole new series of xcvr's coming out..... all "ESSB ready".

#### ESSB has now turned into a steam roller, that can't be stopped. You can also expect to see some ESSB articles in the magazines in the near future.

later.... Jim VE7RF
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by VE7RF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
For those concerned about older rigs meeting specs, my 30 year old Drake T4X's and 40 year old Collins are 10-20 dB better for IM3 and IM5 than a new IC-7800.

### That's pure BS. I owned 4 x T4XC's.... and the best you can get outa em was 24 db down (24 db down from one tone of a 2 tone signal... which equates to 30 db below pep). That's exactly what the arrl lab meaured as well. To boot, you gotta let those floozy sweep tubes idle at 70 Ma x 700 v = 50 w..... IE, the tubes are maxed out on idle.... JUST to get the lousy imd they have. You are NOT getting -50 db from a 40 yr old Collins either.


The idea a defined BW limitation will increase complaints isn't likely to be true long term. Segmentation by BW or clear BW definitions will make things better overall as time progresses, instead of the not having any definition of what is good. Having a clear guideline is always better than not having any guideline at all. We've needed a standard for a long time to force manufacturers to spend the extra dollar or two needed to narrow up signals, and rest assured it won't be a major expense to make big improvements!!

### Listen very carefully. The ARRL proposal is DEAD ! DEAD. The ARRL only has 16% of the hams. Hams are arrl member's so they can receive QST.... that's it.

### The FCC has stated after that last petition, they WILL NOT REVISIT THIS ISSUE AGAIN. The FCC is not going to wanna get into the BW enforcement business.

#### DE-REGULATION is in..... more regulations and "KILOCYCLE COPS" are out.

### If a porion of any band is dead.... I'll use it... regardless of mode or BW. Make it elastic, and flexible.

### You CW guys need maybe 20 khz max... at the bottom of each band... and even that's 19 khz too much on 75m as is.




The real issue is if they have carefully thought

### The real issue is that the main purpose of incentive licensing was to keep the riff raff outa the dx portion of the band. Back in the mid 80's, there was 25,000 extra class hams... compared to 350,000 non extra's.

## CW is dead. It's like demanding a fella know how to shoe a horse, in order to get a driver's license!

### Nice try Tom, but your "pie in the sky" master plan cooked up by the old boyz network in Newington, ain't gonna cut it.

later.... Jim VE7RF
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by NS6Y_ on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
So I walk into HRO the other day, and sure enough (there are rigs set up ready to operate there) there's Mr Audio wearing pink capri's and talking into a toilet paper roll............
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KG4RUL on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W1DUD writes:

"Sounds to me like another one who has to sound like Ted Baxter when he transmits.

Dennis KG4RUL

......So what does Hi-Fi 2 meters sound like???"

================

Exactly like HiFi HF. So what is your point?

Dennis
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K1KP on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
you wrote:

Collins started out with a filter bandwidth on SSB of 1.8 kHz and soon increased to 2.4 kHz filters to achieve better intelligibility. This was between 6 dB points.

Not true. In the KWS-1, Collins' first amateur SSB transmitter, the filter was 3 kC wide. In the 75A-4, the matching receiver, the nominal SSB passband was 3.1 kC. This was continued in the KWM-1, and not until the S-line was the bandwidth reduced to 2.1 kC.

Other than that, I agree that 3 kC at -26db is too narrow.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I wonder when the ARRL is going to start putting out disclaimers about building homebrew transmitters and amplifiers from their books, both old and new. I suspect they will want to prevent the defense that "I built it just like the ARRL said to! I can't help it if doesn't meet the bandwidth requirements! They need to reimburse me if the project doesn't meet new FCC regulations!"

I suspect they will only recommend building them if you have the necessary test equipment to measure the occupied bandwidth, i.e. two tone generators, step attenuators, calibrated spectrum analyser, etc. In other words, its on you, not them if the project is not compliant.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W8JI Wrote:

1.) I can't even go out and buy a standard 3kHz SSB filter from most major filter suppliers! I'd have to custom order something that wide. Don't take my word for it, look at this link:

http://www.networksciences.com/ssb.htm

N3JI >> That's funny, I got my 3k filter from Icom. My Ten-Tec Jupiter transmits 3.9k out of the box (The Orion is the same) and when I run it with PC control SW in Pegasus mode, it runs 6k easily. A lot of Kenwoods TX 3k+ out of the box. Bone stock rigs. What's your point???


2.) The bandwidth starts where your bass ends, and ends where the treble ends. If I'm interested in clear good sounding communications, I can start my filter at 300Hz or so and end it at 2800 Hz or so up (or down). That's pretty close to optimum for communications. That means at 14300kHz I'd primarily occupy 14300.3 to 14302.8 before the signal rolled off. That's means some other lucky soul could probably use 14297 without hearing an annoying whine whine whine from my useless extended bass. Why would someone need 14300.3 to 14303.3? No one needs bass below 300 Hz unless they want to broadcast their gas releases, and there is nothing useful above 2400Hz either except spitting noise.

N3JI >> Who cares what you're interested in? Everybody has different interests and it isn't up to you to decide what everyone else should be into. The "gas releases" you normally hear are from the folks that aren't part of the QSO. I've heard (and have recordings of) these idiots dropping obscene comments and making rude noises during our roundtables. These are the immature bozos that seem to have a loose screw someplace. No ID, and totally against the rules. "Spitting noises"? It's call syllabance, Tom. And there have been multiple studies that prove scientifically that comprehension goes *UP* with wider BW. It's indisputable.


3.) It is quite EASY to get filters that are 30 dB down at 3kHz BW and that "sound great" on SSB. We don't need to be "band hogs" so we can play radio announcer.

N3JI >> Oh yeah? Good for you. I'd like to hear a 30dB down 3k filter that sounds "great". When you get to decide what I can sound like and what I can say on the bands is when I shred my license. What makes you think you can decide how everyone else should sound or what they should say? As Jim said, contesters make thousands and thousands of useless QSOs each and every contest weekend. If we were to judge Amateur Radio by content, we'd probably be close to the top of the list. "Again??? AGAIN??? You're 59....59....QRZ??" would most likely be at the bottom. I also contest occasionally, so I'm not going to claim that it's not fun. It proves again and again that when nobody else can get through, Amateur Radio can provide world-wide communications. But I think it's okay to call a spade a spade, too.


4.) The author incorrectly assumes the IF filter alone sets the bandwidth, and that everything dumped into that filter is flat well outside the passband of the filter. That isn't necessary when designing nor is it true in most cases. We can easily limit audio response with a good inexpensive low pass filter before the modulation process. EF Johnson did that in 1950 with L/C components, we can do it in 2005 with significantly fewer problems.

N3JI >> Most of us are fully aware of how IMD works. Most of us don't overdrive our amps and crank all the knobs to the right. I'll be honest -- I have yet to see a "dirty" transmission from an ESSB'er. If somebody were to come in with one, they would be told pretty quickly about it. Most of the time it comes from over-compressed, overdriven equipment normally found outside of an ESSB QSO.


What do I suggest?

Let's set aside a place for the guys who like to have broadcast audio. Let's have a legally enforceable bandplan or rule that still allows audiophiles to get wide, but keeps them away from people who just want to engage in communications. The whole idea behind the ARRL plan, and it is a GREAT idea, is to sort things by bandwidth. That's PERFECT for all of us if we want to minimize QRM. Wide modes and narrow modes don't mix, and the narrow space efficient modes are almost always the losers! Let's reward narrow modes, not punish them by subjecting them to wide bandwidth QRM generators.

N3JI >> You want *MORE* rules in place? Why can't we enforce the ones we have? Who is going to enforce this new plan? Whose going to pay for the folks to do it? Why can't we just let groups that use certain modes collect in different portions of the band like we do now? The huge flaw in your reasoning is that each one of us takes up 6k in different parts of the band leaving no room for narrower SSB. That's a bunch of garbage. You might hear one or two groups on 75m using ESSB. Last night for example, there was a group on 3840 and another on 3787. There were at least 8 or 10 guys there total all using the same 6k, and there was plenty of room on either side.

N3JI >> The one thing that does concern me are these so-called "automatic" stations. However, why would they be any different on HF than 2m packet? "Everyone" knows what 144.39 is and stays away from it. Why would it be different on HF? I sure don't claim to be an expert, but I believe that these automatic stations by default will be limited to one or two freqs. Logistically, how would the automatic stations know where to listen & transmit if they weren't limited to one freq (or two)? I'm against automatic stations if it means they will be scattered all over the band, but I doubt it would be that way. Seems much more logical that it would be like 144.39.

Instead of wasting energy and time throwing out very good ideas, let's work to have a wide band segment for those who enjoy being Ted Baxter sound-alikes. Think of it like a designated parking area for people who still want to drive wide full size 1950-1970 cars to the store. That way they don't need to be banging their wideband doors against the sides of the normal cars and leaving unnecessary dents all over the band.

N3JI >> That's simply counter-productive to where we need to be going. Nobody is claiming AM'ers (typically 30-50% wider than us) should be limited to some small portion of the band. We do that voluntarily, but you know what? When the "narrow" SSB'ers continually encroach on the well-known AM window, a lot of us QSY to 3760. Why should that be illegal? Tom (or anyone else so far) has produced zero evidence that there is a need to segregate wide SSB from other modes. He has made general statements and produced no justification. Until I see a real reason otherwise, Canada's implementation is working and I see no reason why it wouldn't work here. I'm truly surprised Tom isn't behind deregulation. I would think that he would much prefer to snag DX directly on 7090 kHz instead of running split.

Joe, N3JI


73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N6AYJ on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I'm at a loss to figure out what motivates you people who favor the ARRL's misbegotten bandplan proposal. Are you just into power and control, and get a really good feeling from telling everybody else how to operate? Or are you afraid of freedom, and want Big Brother controlling how you operate? Which is it? It's got to be one or the other, because you have to admit that the ESSB'ers aren't doing you any harm, and that there's plenty of room on the bands for them. I think you're a bunch of sicko control freaks.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hi, Walter:

I see by reading the comments there is a total lack of understanding of your analysis. I suspect very few
have ever seen a sweep of an IF Crystal Lattice
filter.

The same problem occurs when trying to explain that
use of USBSC emission does not allow operating
one tenth of a khz inside the lower edge of a band.

Now - there are a couple of other influences to
consider in bandwidth - the COllins mechanical
filters, while not having the amount of final rejection
of a good 8 or 12 crystal lattice, does have almost
vertical front and rear porch attenuation. And, with
the modern radios now using DSP for ssb generation,
it is probably possible to have 2.4 kHz audio bandpass
withing the 3 kHz -26dB points.

However - the proposal would probably make illegal, the
use of older radios so common now. Can you imagine
explaining to someone using a S-Line or Drake C Line
that their radios aren't acceptable?

 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N0AH on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
NS6Y.......You lost me at the Toilet Paper Roll thing-

I read the ARRL EC waste of brain matter proposal three times today. Mush. Planning ahead for the next ten years eh? I can't wait to see this new volunteer band plan chart. 38 colors, 3D glasses, all for $99.99 cents.

Dear Dave,

If I hear some bonehead running digital crap below 14.025MHz, I'm moving my new DX frequency up to 14.075MHz. But this won't happen because we all get along.

But the ARRL want's us to all think the boogie man is coming!! AHHHhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

You want to discuss dead spaces for digital expansion and leave the existing busy HF spectrum alone Dave?

3.575MHz-3.750MHz (sorry Canada)
7.075Mhz-7.150MHz
14.320MHz-14.350MHz (Fossil Fuel Nets)
Anywhere above 21.300MHz Born Free space to run wild!
27.555 USB- Revenge for whackos who QRM lower portion of 10 meters

If I get any futurerama digital stuff on my CW or phone, like a lot of hams, I'll stand my ground. The slow scan guys do it all the time and for the most part, no one messes with them. We all tend to respect our space but trying to reconfigure the entire HF spectrum is crapola-

Write your congressman-

Avoid FT-847's

Buy Icoms Pro III's

And watch out for those toilet roll thingy's at HRO- that sounds wierd-
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K9MI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Walt, you must be feeling pretty misunderstood here.

Walt is not talking about HI FI audio!

Try this simple, very simple way of seeing just how broad a "normal" ssb really is.

Tune up the band until you just start hearing a signal. Not one that is intelligble at this point. Now keep tuning as you listen. You'll reach the point at about 2.5 khz from where you started, to where you can now understand the station. But wait! Keep going. You'll now be hearing that station on the other side. So, his total bandwidth he is using is closer to 5 khz, maybe a little more, maybe a little less.

If the bandwidth of his total signal were only 3 khz on ssb can you imagine how pinched up that signal would be?

I don't of any radio made today that would use ssb and sound even remotely decent at "a total of 3 khz".

Mike - K9MI


 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hi Mike:

I understand what you are trying to do, however, in
real terms, your test leaves out the bandwidth of
the receiver. You always have to take the window
od your receiver in account.

Del
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
My stock T4XC and KWM-2 (just looked at them) easily meet the proposed 3 kHz SSB bandwidth specs. Not a good argument about old rigs not meeting specs, unless you want to run a CE 20A (it flunks)!

The fashionable year 2000 argument when something might step on our toes is, of course, we "don't need more regulation". A bandwidth restriction and segments by bandwidth actually isn't more restriction, it is less. It is also a very CLEAR resistriction instead of the "minimum necessary bandwidth" people now enjoy ignoring or abusing.

For those who think 3 kHz and wider filters are standard voice SSB filters from commercial filter manufacturers, you better look again. As I stated, it is the wider filters that are custom order from filter manufacturers, or optional settings in SSB communication DSP systems. Most people know that (I think).

For those who think frequencies above 2500 Hz or so are necessary for improving communications, think again. The spitting, no matter what you call it, hasn't been considered necessary in communications systems for years. Neither have frequencies below 300 Hz. If some want to sound like HiFi radio voices that's perfectly fine, but you really need to be off with other needlessly wide modes....not parked between normal signals. It just doesn't mix well.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA4DOU on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
VE7RF is absolutely dead wrong: CW is not dead and is not going away! It is the 2nd most popular mode in use today and is not really very far behind #1.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hi Tom:

Your standard 2.4 kHz Drake is 26 dB down at
3 kHz ? I'm very surprised.

Del
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W8JI Wrote:

For those who think 3 kHz and wider filters are standard voice SSB filters from commercial filter manufacturers, you better look again. As I stated, it is the wider filters that are custom order from filter manufacturers, or optional settings in SSB communication DSP systems. Most people know that (I think).

N3JI >> What do you mean by "optional"?? My DSP generated rig comes from the factory capable of 3900 Hz TX BW. I had no say in the matter. With "optional" SW, I can TX out to 6k.


For those who think frequencies above 2500 Hz or so are necessary for improving communications, think again. The spitting, no matter what you call it, hasn't been considered necessary in communications systems for years. Neither have frequencies below 300 Hz. If some want to sound like HiFi radio voices that's perfectly fine, but you really need to be off with other needlessly wide modes....not parked between normal signals. It just doesn't mix well.

N3JI >> I see it "mixed" with "normal" signals every single day and night, Tom. AM, ESSB, and SSTV are all "parked" in the same place "normal" SSB signals are. What kind of proof do you offer us that it's not working?

N3JI >> As far as using more BW, the old argument that "it's always been that way" never holds water. Is that all you have?? I can produce studies that show you're dead wrong. Here's one:

http://www.polycom.com/common/pw_cmp_updateDocKeywords/0,1687,1809,00.pdf

Joe, N3JI


73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom:
We are'nt talking about what audio frequencies
are passed by the proposed bandwidth.
Take a standard transmitter of good design.
Your 6dB point at the bottom will be up
somewhere around 300 hZ depending on where
the carrier is set on slope. Therefore,
having a 3 kHz bandwidth does not mean audio
frequencies of 3 kHz. Assuming the carrier is
set at 300 hZ up the slope, then your 6dB point
is at 2.7 kHz with a 2.4 kHz filter. But the audio
frequencies transmitted are less than 2.4 kHz.
And getting 20 more db of attenuation in the next
300 Hz is pretty hard to comprehend.

Del
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Ooops. sorry - my brain just recovered.
With the carrier 300 hz up the slope, then the
audio is the other way and 2.4 kHz would have
and audio deom 300 to 2.7 Hz. Sorry.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
K9MI Wrote:
Try this simple, very simple way of seeing just how broad a "normal" ssb really is.

Tune up the band until you just start hearing a signal. Not one that is intelligble at this point. Now keep tuning as you listen. You'll reach the point at about 2.5 khz from where you started, to where you can now understand the station. But wait! Keep going. You'll now be hearing that station on the other side. So, his total bandwidth he is using is closer to 5 khz, maybe a little more, maybe a little less.

N3JI >> This is exactly how people get the wrong idea about us being "10 kHz wide". You *CANNOT* measure BW this way. You're adding the width of your RX filter to the real BW!! Please don't use this as a way of measuring BW -- it's simply incorrect.

Joe, N3JI


If the bandwidth of his total signal were only 3 khz on ssb can you imagine how pinched up that signal would be?

I don't of any radio made today that would use ssb and sound even remotely decent at "a total of 3 khz".

Mike - K9MI

 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N9WB on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Here is an interesting article about using you amateur Radio as a Marine Radio (illegal) and for internet access.

http://www.oceannavigator.com/site/csrv/content.asp?id=469

Walt N9WB
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WW5AA on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Very interesting line. I don't much care for either the audiophile or the pinched-up FMing DXer, however band width isn't going to be a problem in the future. We will be gone and the next generation of no code-no test hams will be sending unregulated digital into a wastland of unused spectrum. Problem solved.

Lindy de WW5AA
 
Don't see how this does any good  
by KF6IIU on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
There seem to be a fairly small number of ESSB lids with 8 khz wide signals and splatter I can hear 20 khz away. About as many contesters each weekend, with their compression cranked up to 11, with 8 khz wide signals and splatter I can hear 20 khz away. So nobody's perfect. And the ESSB guys congregate on a few frequecnies. I can live with that except for the splatter. Most of them don't take up any more space than an AM signal. Will AM be banned? I just don't think 3 khz is practical any more than banning Model T's and flintlock rifles.

What I'm worried about is all the clueless newbies with 3 khz wide PSK31 signals. You come back to these guys with a "590" signal report and the reaction is "huh?". Oh great, now these guys are going to be plugging a Winlink system into their rigs and moving up to the phone bands.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
It appears some of us don't appear to know how to measure BW. We can't tune across a signal using a SSB filter and determine BW by the points where we stop hearing that signal!!! We can't use a 'bandscope" display either, unless it uses a very narrow filter (which I am sure most do not).

The bandwidth of the receiver will add to the *apparent* BW of the transmitter. Assuming brick wall filters, if we have 3kHz transmitter BW and 3 kHz receiver BW, a 3kHz wide signal will appear to be 6kHz wide before things totally disappear. That's because the BW of the receiver adds to what appears on your dial. Say you have a perfect LSB signal modulated with audio from zero to 3 kHz on 3800 and tune across it with a LSB receiver with 3kHz BW.

As 3803 is crossed the receiver's lower edge just starts to overlap 3800, and you hear the signal. You continue to hear it as you tune down to 3797, at which point it disappears.

Bandscopes behave the same, or worse.

What that means is the person who said he tunes across typical SSB signals and hears them for 5kHz (or whatever) is hearing reasonably clean signals with 2.5 kHz or less BW.

When we correct his error, we find he actually should be endorsing 3kHz as a bandwidth limit because most good signals he tunes across appear narrower than the 3kHz limit would allow.

<<<by KL7HF on May 5, 2005
Tom:
We are'nt talking about what audio frequencies
are passed by the proposed bandwidth.
Take a standard transmitter of good design.
Your 6dB point at the bottom will be up
somewhere around 300 hZ depending on where
the carrier is set on slope.>>>

First of all the mean power of my voice spectrum is down well over 6dB at 300Hz. I'd bet yours is also.

Second, the shape factor of any reasonably well designed crystal filter of about 2.4 to 2.5 kHz BW is sharp enough that, at 3 kHz BW at -26 dB, it become very easy to meet specs. That's why my Drake T4XC easily passes that spec.

<<
Therefore,
having a 3 kHz bandwidth does not mean audio
frequencies of 3 kHz. Assuming the carrier is
set at 300 hZ up the slope, then your 6dB point
is at 2.7 kHz with a 2.4 kHz filter. But the audio
frequencies transmitted are less than 2.4 kHz.>>>

The last sentence above is not correct, or at least not easy for me to to follow.

If the audio starts at 300Hz, you have a 2.4kHz BW filter, audio response would end at 2.7kHz. I would write the last sentence as "The highest audio frequency would be 2.7 kHz at -6dB." The response would be 300-2700Hz at -6dB. That's pretty wide for any communications voice of good quality.

With a typical 1.5:1 shape factor -60dB BW would be only 3.6 kHz. Even with flat audio from 100 to 10,000 Hz coming in (which it never is unless you do very strange things with your voice), the rig would easily meet -26dB at 3kHz points. Wider filters like SSB filters are pretty steep at the top areas of the slope.

<<And getting 20 more db of attenuation in the next
300 Hz is pretty hard to comprehend.>>

Not from what I see. I just measured a bone stock FT1000MP and it is -26.5dB at 2.9 kHz, and that's when I run perfectly flat audio from a sweep generator into it.

With my voice and heavy processing it is -26dB at just over 2 kHz BW as measured on a newer Agilent Spectrum analyzer. Imagine that. Heavy speech processing on a stock MP and it passes -26 dB at 2.2 kHz with voice!

If a bone stock MP with abusive clipping levels, a 1950's Collins, and a 1970's Drake pass....what's the real problem?

Is it that people don't understand what's going on, or that a few people want to wider than a normal rig? It has to be one of the two.

73 Tom
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N2MWE on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
God almighty...doesn't the ARRL have better things to worry about than this? If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W1DUD on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal Reply
by KG4RUL on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W1DUD writes:

"Sounds to me like another one who has to sound like Ted Baxter when he transmits.

Dennis KG4RUL

......So what does Hi-Fi 2 meters sound like???"

================

Exactly like HiFi HF. So what is your point?

Dennis
................Just curious Dennis why you would have a opinion on this. Maybe somebody interfering with a QSO you were having on HF? "73" The DUD
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Okay, Tom: I'm having problems with your math.
If you are running a stock MP, then how are you
26 dB down at 2.2 kHz? Your -6 dB point is 2
kHz wider.

Also - you can't measure under voice as the
wierd audio pattern will totally destroy the
pattern. It must be swept.

I have an Omni-6 with a 2.4 kHz Inrad filter
in the transmit line and it is 26 down at 3.17
kHz. The standard Ten-Tec filter measures -26
at 3.3 kHz. Both filters I know are better than
those in the Drake.

I'm dropping out of the discussion because it seems
to have quit being a technical discussion and moving
into a debate over whether or not some guys should
try broadcast quality audio. (I'm opposed to that,
but has nothing to do with the discussion.)

Del, KL7HF
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K1DA on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
JUSt as an aside I have no problem with the VE's holding on to some exclusive phone spectrum for their domestic needs rather than having it all drown in the stateside QRM and bickering. Chuck K1DA
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AA4PB on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
----------------------------------------------
Problem is - it is broke and it will become even more "broke" as technology moves on.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
<<by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Okay, Tom: I'm having problems with your math. If you are running a stock MP, then how are you 26 dB down at 2.2 kHz? Your -6 dB point is 2 kHz wider.>>

I don't know why you say that. The 6dB down point isn't 2 kHz wider. It's just over -26dB down at 2.9kHz overall BW, and that's with a swept tone and just the tiniest bit of ALC. I don't see where you got 4.2 (2+2.2) from.

Also - you can't measure under voice as the
wierd audio pattern will totally destroy the
pattern. It must be swept.>>

I do bandwidth tests with voice every month Del. When I file FCC proofs on VHF and UHF equipment I have to do it with voice. The FCC requires it.

Modern spectrum analysis equipment can do occupied BW, peak, average, mean or RMS power within a certain BW, and all sorts of things and do it quite well under conditions of modulation.

I suppose if you are using a 1960's analyzer it might be a problem.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Del,

Maybe what you didn't catch is the human voice does not have flat spectrum distribution. Some people would like to make it that way with processing I guess.

When a single tone sweeps the passband, it is a flat source. With speech, it is a sloped source with peaks well inside the passband of the filter. The voice frequency rolloff is added to the filter rolloff.

IM distortion is not measured with a single tone, so IM is always significantly worse with speech (especially if lows and highs are accented), but we are talking about the -26dB points and not the lower signal levels where IM becomes a concern. At -26 dB it is mostly a filter issue, although I'd bet there are some crappy rigs that may come close to having an IM issue when bass and treble are enhanced.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hi again, Tom - even though I said I
was outa here.

It must have been a hundred years since I did
a proof and that was on AM BC stations, but we
did use single tones. Since getting out of that
biz and spent the last 20 years doing satellite
uplink work for telcos so I am out of touch with
the latest pc based equipment and procedures.

For sure - if the Commission does adopt the new
emission standards, all measurements will be off the
air with voice or other intelligent modulation so
you might have a point as to being able to sneak by.

What the heck ever happened to the phrase they used
about "State of the Art" instead of this? Maybe the
influx of "Communicators" makes it necessary. Dunno.

At any rate - have a good weekend.

73,
Del, KL7HF

 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I'm starting to wonder why Tom won't answer my questions... Maybe it's the call sign... :-)

So I just ran a spectral analysis on my voice with only my flat studio microphone into my pre-amp. No other processing. Man, I wish we could post pictures here. It starts at 60 Hz and ramps up pretty quickly to a peak right around 110 Hz. From there, it maintains that amplitude to about 500Hz, then it drops a bit out to about 1800 Hz, then drops a bit more out to about 4.2k. Then there's a "V" shaped cut between 4.2 & 8k with a small peak right in the middle of the "V", then it maintains that amplitude out to about 10k where it slopes down into nothingness at 18k.

I'd really like to hear an audio clip of Tom sometime -- if his voice is really 6dB down at 300 Hz, HIS must not have dropped yet. The highest energy in my natural voice is between 80 and 500 Hz, stair-stepping down out past 12 kHz with a couple of "V" shape cuts in there. *NO WONDER* he doesn't like "Ted Baxter"!!! :-)

But seriously, there *HAS* to be something wrong with how he measured his voice. Either that, or he didn't use a *REAL* flat response microphone. If any of you took a look at the link I posted to the BW vs. Speech Intelligibility study earlier, you would see something similar to what I described my voice looking like. If anyone would like to see and/or hear it, I'd be glad to email it out. I just hate to see mis-information put out there, especially from a fairly well known source.

I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is... (Sorry, couldn't help it!!)

:-)

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Good grief. All you audio guys, you can't measure your occupied RF bandwidth with an audio sweep generator. Geez, go get a handbook and look up the following items;

1 - Mixers and the products developed in them. All SSB transmitters have at least two, the balanced modulator and another one to get to the final frequency.

2 - Two tone testing of a SSB transmitter.

3 - Intermodulation products, both from mixers and Class AB1 or AB2 amplifiers. Multifrequency audio like voice or digital modem tones generates IMD products in mixers. These basically define your occupied bandwidth. They are also what you hear when you hear splatter because some amplifier in the rig is being overdriven on voice peaks causing amplifier generated IMD products, most probably the final amp.

All an audio sweep generator will give you is a CW signal not a voice modulated SSB signal. If you sweep it, all you are doing is moving the CW signal up and down the band. Since there is only one tone, there are no intermod products to make your occupied RF bandwidth larger. Read up on how some Collins transmitters generated CW signals, i.e., an audio oscillator.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KL7HF on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hi, Jim:

What you say is true, however, or maybe I should
say hopefully - the final actual bandwidth limits
will be set by the filtering. IMD, voice peaks and
nulls come and go so you have to depend on a limiting
factor. As to added products from tha amplifiers,
a totally different problem which is already covered
in part 97. there are two seperate forms of energy
in a transmitted signal, modulation envelope and
spurious. One is what's needed for communications, the
other self explanatory. Energy in the modulation
envelope is what we're concerned with here and the
spurious is limited by dB down from the main signal.

I Love These Good Ones. Beats the heck out of listening
to "My Yaesu can whup your Kenwood"!

See ya.

Del
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
KL7HF

Hello Del,

Actually the filtering will only limit the IMD products from the balanced modulator. Most SSB transmitters have one or two other mixers to move the signal after the filter to the final frequency and a lot don't have further filtering after these mixers. The mixer products are not dependent upon amplitude, only the frequency. Well,,,, that's not exactly true the IMD levels do depend upon the amplitude but their existence does not.

Part of the problem myself and many others have with the ARRL proposal is its lack of technical precision. They throw around -26 db as the bandwidth limit for some other modes so we assume they expect that measure for SSB also. Actually for 3K0J3E. You can't even tell that for sure! The other missing part is how they expect to measure the bandwidth.

All other services in the US that have bandwidth limits DO include the spurious responses if they exceed what is commonly accepted as -26 db. This figure isn't exactly correct because the actual definition can make this figure move a little. Actually the FCC has "overlays" you can use on a spectrum analyzer to determine if your total signal including spurious responses is within the limits.

Since the ARRL has not defined the exact measurement technique to use in measuring occupied bandwidth and since they have used the -26 db figure in other references, one is left to assume that something similar to the commercial measurement will be dictated by the FCC.

If this is the case, we won't be using just the fundamental bandwidth but the total bandwidth including intermod (spurious) products.

Just to make it fun, a calculation using some of the figures above is useful. If you have an audio bandwidth of 300 to 2900 Hz and we only use the low and high to calculate the 3rd order intermod products of any significance out of the balanced modulator, you will have intermod products of 600 - 2900 = -2300 and 5800 - 300 = 5500 for a total bandwidth of 5500 - (-2300) = 7800 Hz. These frequencies are normally applied to the crystal filter so they are reduced significantly. However, there is almost always another mixer to move this signal to the actual frequency and in a lot of rigs there is no additional filter to remove any additional intermod frequencies generated in this mixer

Amplifier intermod can be a problem as rigs age, especially with transistor finals. Heat does bad things to semiconductors over time. The bias points move and even though you set it per the manual you may not be quite right anymore, especially if the transistors have not changed equally. If the bias point is far enough off you can see the crossover distortion on a scope like a Heathkit HO-10 or even a regular scope. Otherwise it takes a spectrum analyzer to tell if your intermod products are exceeding the -26 db level. Once you can see it on a scope, you are far above that level.

Anyway, this is what many of us are concerned about. If the 3 kHz bandwidth is accepted and measured like commerical rigs, there will be many of us that may be exceeding the limit. It would be nice if there were some technically rigorous details contained in the plan.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Jim -- WA0LYK,
Here's one more Bee for your Bonnet: I've seen cases where BW is measured not only by using the voice and taking into account the spurious products, but also the time each small slice of the overall BW is actually used. For instance, if you simply stick a spec any in peak-hold, you'll get to see how much BW the transmitter is capable of, and its maximum spurious products. But if you watch it real-time and use a human voice, you will see that the bulk of the energy is approximately 100 Hz to say 3.5k (if a flat transmitter & mic are used), speaker dependant. The range above 3.5k or so out to the maximum the transmitter is capable of is only used with certain (but very important) parts of the human voice making it only a small portion (guessing 10-15%??) of the total power over time picture. You would need SW that uses algorithms to accomodate that important parameter. Max hold is useful to check the total response of a transmitter, but doesn't really give you an idea of how much time the transmitter actually spends producing energy there.

That's where a lot of guys get the idea that 300-3k is plenty. It's true that most of the voice energy is there (actually, 80-100 Hz or so to 3k+), but critical pieces lie above & below those "magic" numbers. And more importantly, it doesn't mean that it isn't crucial to intelligibilty and realism, it only means that it isn't used as often. See the difference? Commercial telecommunication systems are finally getting it, so maybe when it is more common there, it will be more accepted by the nay-sayers here.

Joe, N3JI

 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8ER on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom W8JI is a very smart guy but I think he missed a couple of points in his analysis and comments. So did many others:

1)Bandwidth is not affected by the low frequency components of a signal. So if you want to sound like Ted Baxter ..hey have at it, a SSB signal that contains the audio frequencies of 50 hz to 300 hz is only 250 hz wide. It has long been my contention that many hams incorrectly identify wide signals as ones with low end audio response and nothing could be further from the truth! It's the high frequencies, guys, that contribute to bandwidth!!

In Tom's comments he speaks of the low end cutoff as subtracting the overall bandwidth of the filter and that's deceiving. Let's say that by his terms a filter is a 3 khz filter and a signal was placed in it's passband so that the low frequency cutoff would be 300 hz and accordingly the high frequency cuttoff would then be 3300 hz. By readjusting your signals position in the passband of the filter so that an audio frequency of 50 hz was passed, the highest audio frequency would still be 3050 hz. That measly 300 or so hz at the low end, which all of you guys seem to object to so much, doesn't have diddly squat affect on bandwidth .. diddly squat is a very technical term meaning insignificant. You can't hear the difference of 300 hz at the high end but it is a dramatic difference at the low end!

2) Tom, you also tend to describe ham radio as if the prime purpose is communication and that's not true. According to the FCC, experimentation has a significant role to play in amateur radio.

If you think about it, anybody who is on SSB and has a problem with bandwidth should ask himself "why am I on SSB if I am so concerned about bandwidth" CW communicates and is much less of a bandwidth hog!

Now we are down to preferences. The SSB guys say hey we like phone and narrow SSB but those HiFi SSB and AM guys are really wide. Well HiFi SSB and AM are still perfectly legal modes and preferred by some, so what makes your preferences for narrow SSB so much more justifiable .. because it uses less bandwidth? Tsk tsk are you saying to everybody that we all must do it your way because it is the right way?

Let's look at it realistically. The number of active hams is declining and the decline will be more rapid in the near future. I believe the average age of radio amateurs is 56 and it is increasing quickly. So it follows that the bands are going to become much less heavily occupied in the near future and bandwidth is going to become less, not more, of a problem as new amateur are not joining our ranks as quickly as the older amateurs are leaving.

The ARRL is way out of whack on this and many other proposals ..like letting Newbies operate SSB in the upper 100 khz of 75 meters .. that one is a doozie!

--Larry W8ER
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KB4RMN on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Oh great, something ELSE we can get busted for!-James KB4RMN
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by VE7RF on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Let me spell out this ESSB senario really clearly. ESSB is here to stay... period.

ESSB is now a steam roller, that neither the ARRL, nor the FCC can stop.

BOTH Icom AND Yaesu AND Ten-Tec are on board with ESSB, and have embraced it finally.

Expect to see new xcvr's coming out that will be ..."ESSB ready". They are also reffering to it as .. "high def audio"

When you listen to ESSB with a modified MK-V in STEREO RX mode, with a pair of Senheiser HD-280's (best headphones currently made), your jaw is gonna drop.

Rick, N6DQ, was at a DX convention 3 weeks ago, and had his TS-2000 in the car. The TS-2000 will RX 0-5000 hz. He also had it hooked to his mega sound sytem in the car, complete with subwoofers, etc. Around midnight, a bunch of half pissed up DX'er's are outside in the parking lot.... and hear this deluxe audio coming from Rick's car. Rick wound down the windows, and cranked it up. He had it on 3840 khz... one of the main ESSB freqs, used all night long.

These DX'ers just couldn't believe what they were hearing... as they all gathered around his vehicle.
"That can't be ssb" they all squealed.... but it was.

They got the biggest eye and ear opener of their lives. Then, it was... "How can I do that"

Nuff said..... the writing is on the wall.

later... Jim VE7RF
 
RE: ESSB Live streaming audio... every night  
by VE7RF on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Gent's

We have several live streaming sites on the internet... all on 3840 khz, nightly.

The latest one uses a Ten Tec Orion... with RX BW opened up to 0-6000 hz.

This latest one has abt a 1 min delay... hosted by WO3B .

When individuals hear it, they freak out... and become ESSB converts right then and there! They are hooked in under 60 seconds.

Neophytes, Broadcast Engineer's, you name it, all just love it.

One would have to be brain dead to want to go back to crap audio, after hearing this ESSB....just once.

It's the hottest 'new mode' going, eats up just a tiny bit more BW.... and is vastly supieor.

It's zero fatiguing, you can listen to it for hrs on end.

It's also better for working DX, with lousy s/n ratio's. Narrow ssb might be Q-3 . ESSB is Q-5. We have done this test hundreds of times.

later... Jim VE7RF

 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KJ7YL on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I have been listening to the Wide stations on 3.840 KHZ. Frankly the stations who run 4 KHZ sound great.

I also wonder about how adjacent channel interference will play out as a result.

So it is clear that I will have to educate myself on the issue before I can take a posistion. So maybe folks listens to all of the facts before making a decision one way or another.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I'm sure by now all the ESSB fanatics with all the incorrect theories they have (in the name of good science) are flocking to this thread, but let me address a few points......


<<<<by W8ER on May 5, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom W8JI is a very smart guy but I think he missed a couple of points in his analysis and comments. So did many others:

1)Bandwidth is not affected by the low frequency components of a signal. So if you want to sound like Ted Baxter ..hey have at it, a SSB signal that contains the audio frequencies of 50 hz to 300 hz is only 250 hz wide. It has long been my contention that many hams incorrectly identify wide signals as ones with low end audio response and nothing could be further from the truth! It's the high frequencies, guys, that contribute to bandwidth!! >>>

It's a common ESSB myth that bass does not increase BW. Adjacent channel IM is created by mixing of frequencies with a wide spread. The more useless bass and treble you put into the audio the more problematic IM3 (and higher order products) become. In short additional bass and additional treble increase the frequency spread where the most problematic IM products, IM3, fall.

As a matter of fact the change is not even close to linear. It's almost a square law effect as levels of lows and highs are increased.

Our rigs just aren't clean enough to run pumped up bass. Not speaking of filter attenuation, which is good, but IM products.....our rigs are far downhill from where they were 20 or 30 years ago.

Transistors are operated up too far into non-linear parts of the curve. LV supplies have too much sag, some amplifiers don't have the dynamic regulation. Look at reviews on tetrode amplifiers for IM3, and compare them to older GG triodes! All two-tone tests I have seen fail to test the LF dynamics of power supplies, and tetrode amps are already poorer than GG triodes! Some of the most popular ESSB radios have some of the worse IM specs of all the radios manufactured.

Now think about the last time you heard an ESSB guru warn people about off-channel IM product generation, or worry about running increased lows and highs into a rig barely better than class C when fed a normal close spaced two tone steady state test.

While a normal voice signal actually IMPROVES adjacent channel rolloff, bringing up the lows makes things much worse quickly. It also does nothing for readability of signals through noise or interference.

Maybe someone can explain how making a signal intentionally wide and taking up two or three times the BW necessary suits the "experimental" purpose of amateur radio. I would think the goal is to be good neighbors and conserve space on crowded bands.

Maybe someone can explain why being intentionally wider than necessary, or thinking sideways thoughts like "my pumped up bass won't increase BW", demonstrates an increase in technical skill.

Why would a person with "increased technical skills" not understand non-linear systems, or basic measurement techniques?

I'm all ears for the explaination.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N9WB on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Let me get back to the original post. The proposal shows SSB signals as having a maximum bandwidth of 3 kHz. Now, here is the problem. How is ďbandwidthĒ defined? It is not defined in this proposal. However, it is already defined in the existing Amateur Rules in force today. Look it up.

Here is the definition of bandwidth in the Part 97 FCC rules.
97.3 (a) (8) (8)

Bandwidth. The width of a frequency band outside of which the mean power of the transmitted signal is attenuated at least 26 dB below the mean power of the transmitted signal within the band.

Now, forgetting ESSB for a moment, if we have a filter that has 3 kHz bandwidth as defined by this existing definition, and we set the carrier point so 300 Hz is 26 dB down, and 3300 Hz at 26 dB down. ( 3 kHz between 26 dB points) The distance between the 6-dB points will be far less than the 3 kHz distance between the 26 dB points. The distance between the 3 dB points will be even less. The distance between the ends of the flat area will be even less.

Now remember, if we are running 100 watts, the 6 dB point is the 25 watt point. So actually the low end would start rolling off at a lot higher frequency than 300 Hz. The top end will start rolling off at a lot lower frequency than 3300 Hz. This is not going to affect just the ESSB guys, it will affect all of us. We will be lacking in fullness and we will be lacking in punch and articulation. Other countries will not require this of their Amateurs so we will be at a decided disadvantage when working DX or contests. It will also make rag chewing fatiguing and unpleasant.

I suppose that we can make up for some of that in contests and DX by using high levels of compression and clipping to increase our RMS like we did with our stock ceramic mikes in the 70ís and 80ís and generate IM products all over the band. Just dig out that old Vomax and unhook the ALC from the amp.

Amateurs have strived for better audio since voice modulation was first used. When was it that some genius decided that to have a good sounding signal was an abomination?

Vy 73, Walt N9WB


 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8ER on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>>I'm sure by now all the ESSB fanatics with all the incorrect theories>>

Aw come on Tom. I'm not an "ESSB fanatic" and I certainly don't have a corner on incorrect theories but I think what I said is sound (pardon the pun)!

>>>It's a common ESSB myth that bass does not increase BW. Adjacent channel IM is created by mixing of frequencies with a wide spread. The more useless bass and treble you put into the audio the more problematic IM3 (and higher order products) become.>>

Well Tom one of the things that I have been "experimenting" with is what it takes to sound decent. There are some who are doing wild things like pumping up the bass by huge magnitudes. That sounds lousy! That creates the problems that you reference, IM3 distortion. It's phony and sounds bad. I've found that rolling off things below 200 hz puts enough bass into the audio to be natural sounding, not like some friggin duck. It also sounds clean. "Experimentation" with the high end shows that if you brickwall anything above 3.5 to 4 khz you will have a nice presence that is pleasant to listen to. I have even heard limits as low as 3 khz sound pretty decent, but I sure as heck would want to be told that I couldn't!!


>>>Our rigs just aren't clean enough to run pumped up bass. Not speaking of filter attenuation, which is good, but IM products.....our rigs are far downhill from where they were 20 or 30 years ago.>>>

I don't know what rig you are running but my Johnson Viking Ranger II sounds pretty darn good! My Kenwood TS-870 will hold a candle with the best of them but Tom, I am looking for good clean audio with a bit of presence .. something nice to listen to, not this pumped up audio crap.

>>>Now think about the last time you heard an ESSB guru warn people about off-channel IM product generation, or worry about running increased lows and highs into a rig barely better than class C when fed a normal close spaced two tone steady state test.>>

OK OK What we have here with this ARRL proposal is the introduction of bandwidth restrictions where we have had none in the past. Do we really want to do that because a FEW of us don't have the brains god gave a duck?

>>Maybe someone can explain how making a signal intentionally wide and taking up two or three times the BW necessary suits the "experimental" purpose of amateur radio. I would think the goal is to be good neighbors and conserve space on crowded bands.>>

I think what I have done is a good example. Through some pretty intensive on the air testing, I have found that there IS a point beyond 500-2000 hz of audio bandwidth that is not abnoxious and doesn't require excessive bandwidth and is quite pleasant to communicate with. Now, of course, pleasant is subjective! Pleasant to someone trying to land his 204th country is quite different than what pleasant is to someone who just got a nice cup of coffee and is sitting down with his buddies for a rag chew. YOU MUST MAKE ROOM FOR ALL!

>>>Why would a person with "increased technical skills" not understand non-linear systems, or basic measurement techniques? >>>

I think that's a fair question! You of course understand that in our ranks we have individuals who are trying to figure out which terminal on a 12 VDC relay coil is positive as well as individuals who are using masks and spectrum analyzers to measure bandwidth. So with that in mind, how do you propose that we take the first individual and explain to him what the second is doing? As for me Tom, I'm just trying to have fun with the hobby. I'm an old broadcast engineer with many years at a 50 KW major market AM station. I don't need to figure out which terminal on a DC relay coil is positive but I sure as heck know what sounds good and is reasonable and I am experimenting with all kinds of modes SSB, ESSB, AM, SSTV and I like talking to my buddies with a good cup of coffee on the desk and listening to "quack quack" isn't my idea of pleasant.

>>>I'm all ears for the explaination.>>>

Now I'm all ears for an explanation as to how you think the ARRL proposal is furthering the hobby by placing restrictions in places where there has been none .. sort of like putting speed limits on the Autobahn!

73 -- Larry W8ER
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hello....<TAP> <TAP> <TAP>...is this thing on???

Come on Tom, most of us know that the wider a signal is, the greater the IMD. Now you are implying that a wider SSB signal doesn't meet spectral purity requirements. If our signals (and mine does) meet the specs, where's your beef?

Seems like you're the one with "incorrect theories" like more BW doesn't mean better comprehension and high frequency response equals "spitting". Once again, he claims "the bands are too crowded" for ESSB. Where are you listening? The groups I have been hearing have plenty of space on either side of them. The exception is the 75m Nomad group I get on with occasionally. However, we are always on frequency first for quite some time (like over an hour) before someone decides that "those wide guys aren't taking over *MY* frequency!!!" and begin intentional QRM or obscene comments or noises. It isn't always that way to be fair, but it seems like it is more often than not. Why is that acceptable behavior to you? When the bands a really crowded (normally during the more popular contests), the *INTENTIONAL* QRM is so bad (and I don't know what else to call it), I just QRT. I've said this before, but is a pile up not an intentional QRM fest to the nth degree?? Sometimes, I'm in the contests though, so I figure if you can't beat 'em, BEAT 'EM!!

:-)

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Larry W8ER

>>>Our rigs just aren't clean enough to run pumped up bass. Not speaking of filter attenuation, which is good, but IM products.....our rigs are far downhill from where they were 20 or 30 years ago.>>>

I don't know what rig you are running but my Johnson Viking Ranger II sounds pretty darn good! My Kenwood TS-870 will hold a candle with the best of them but Tom, I am looking for good clean audio with a bit of presence .. something nice to listen to, not this pumped up audio crap."

Larry and Tom,

The analysis Tom is making is right on and is pertinent to the discussion of whether a regulatory maximum 3 kHz bandwidth is appropriate. I certainly don't think it is.

You sound like you are reasonable and have done enough work to insure your signal is not overly broad. However, from some of the comments I've seen here, not enough people understand the workings of a transmitter. They are audio guys who haven't spent one hour researching anything to do with RF. It's almost like we need a test before you can run ESSB to tell if you know enough about transmitters.

Apparently, a lot of the folks here think crystal filters are only used to limit the audio passband. That is certainly one of their functions. However, you COULD do this with audio filters a lot more cheaply. Keep in mind the crystal filters work at RF (and 455 Khz is considered RF) and their main purpose is to remove the opposite sideband and reduce IM3 products generated in the balanced modulator.

Also, has anyone checked their local oscillator to see if it has drifted or where it is actually located on the skirt of the crystal filter. All components in transmitters have tolerances and part of the design process is to make everything work even when the parts all combine to the worst case. I'll bet no one can show me a local oscillator without a trimmer on the crystal to adjust the frequency. This means your LO could be at the -10 db point on the crystal filter skirt and someone elses could be at the -15 db point. Crystal filter passbands also vary between parts. This means even if two rigs had EXACTLY the same LO freq, you might still be at different points. My main point in this is that you just can't put all your attention on the audio end and ignore the rest of the system. A transmitter is more than just a block in a diagram. It is an integral part of the whole system and needs as much attention as the mic, equalizers, etc.

If all we had to worry about in a transmitter was the fundamental bandwidth, I'd say, right on, do what ever floats your boat. But, that isn't the case. We don't have "channels" like on the broadcast band with guard space between them. If you put a 200 Hz freq and a 3 Khz freq together in the balanced modulator you WILL get spurious IM3 products at -2600 and 5800 for a bandwidth of 8400 Hz. If they are emphasized in an equalizer, the IM3 products will also be emphasized. For example, if you add 10 dB of gain at these freqs, your IM3 products will be at least 10 db higher than a signal without the emphasis. You'll notice, I said at least, since we are dealing with non-linear devices, you can't assume that they won't be even higher. Even running the signal through the crystal filter, the products will still be at least 10 db higher than an unequalized audio signal.

The other problem is that most amplifiers in transmitters (all of the amps, not just the finals) don't have the "headroom" that audiophiles have come to expect in audio gear. You sound like you take this into account but a lot of folks don't. If you start increasing the power contained in the IM3 products you subtract away from the reserve power left for the fundamental freqs. In other words, it is easier to get bad signals when you use an equalizer.

Lastly, if you are using a Kenwood 870, I wouldn't recommend using it on 12 meters with the new proposed limits. The ARRL tests show the IM3 down only -20 db which would violate the new bandwidth limits.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Larry,

Well, I guess Waltís still doesn't realize a perfectly stock FT1000MP that sounds GREAT with a good microphone, or dozens of other rigs on the market today (probably all of them), easily passes the dreaded 3 kHz proposal that started all this. So do most of my 30 year old SSB rigs, save that poor Central Electronics 20A phasing rig with the command set VFO!

All that aside, the most important point is wondering if this is a needless new restriction.

I say no. It is simply a clarification of technical requirements that already exist. We are already compelled by law to use the "minimum bandwidth necessary" for the mode we are on.

Because the rule is so vague we have all sorts of disagreements that consume time and resources. Mr. Bassbottom wants to sound like WXEZ, so he buys a rig that has -25dB IM3 (pathetic, but true) and taxes the already marginal adjacent channel by increasing the frequency difference and absolute level of the extreme edges of applied audio. Not wanting all his work to go unnoticed he parks...not up next to truckers using -15dBm IM3 class C CB amplifiers...but next to crowded areas used for long distance communications.

Since you do BC work Larry, you probably understand UNintentional mixers in our marginal RF systems (some stock radios are just 10dB better than class C!) don't follow a linear power relationship between garbage levels on the next channel up and down to power levels of the bass and highs that mix and cause those problematic wide-spaced products. It's especially bad when we dump that stuff into tetrode amps that lack the negative feedback that gives GG amplifiers a natural distortion advantage, and accent the lows that perturb source voltages in bias and operating supplies. After all, the highs are taken care of with bypass capacitors but those nasty lows can easily generate sawtooth shaped voltage changes in critical supplies.

When was the last time a "don't I sound great" audiophoole worried about IM products? It's all about on-channel sound!

We all should sit back a think a little how much room we will have to enjoy conversations, whatever type we enjoy, if everyone suddenly wants to be however wide they want where ever they want. We've made it progressively easier to get a license and to upgrade, to the point where almost anyone who wants can easily have full HF privileges.

There just isn't room to allow inconsiderate people to occupy 5 or 6 kHz on the more crowded bands, and worse yet to place that stuff and the 15-18 kHz wide third order products that disrupt weak signals anywhere they like any time they like. We also need a tool that gets the attention of manufacturers to not let radios get any worse than they are.

Commercial two-way radios are moving towards space conservation because the FCC now requires actual voice bandwidth testing for type acceptance. While not a perfect system, it is a giant step in the right direction.

A move like that would reduce enforcement time because it wouldn't take 30 letters and five sessions in Federal courts to decide what we should do to behave properly. More important, meeting the requirements or not, people would be reluctant to act selfishly by placing a commercial broadcast bandwidth signal in prime areas on crowded amateur bands. I've never seen a sensible rule clarification increase problems, and regulating frequency use by bandwidth makes absolute sense. Three kilohertz for SSB is also very reasonable and, despite what some seem to be hung up on, can sound very good.

All this time debating a bandwidth proposal when for the most part we don't fully understand how it all works or how to measure bandwidth has the advantage of educating people, it's a good topic when we learn something.

What we should be doing, rather than tossing the baby out with the bathwater, is forcing the ARRL to use some common sense. If wide-fi boys want a place, if the AM boys want a place, and the spread spectrum want a place, there should be a reasonable wide mode area. They don't need to mix it in with people who want to conserve space. MOST people would no sooner put ESSB near 14200, 3800, or 1840kHz than I would AM or high power spread spectrum. 10kHz modes and 3kHz modes don't mix well. The same goes for 3kHz modes and 300Hz modes.

A far better and much more productive thing would be education, and THEN a rule change that would clearly define what maximum bandwidth could be used where. Send everyone to odd-order IM and bandwidth school, and then propose a change. I'd bet 3khz would pass with flying colors afterwards.

After all, we are supposed to be in this to IMPROVE our radio and communication skills and help each other. Thatís what we should be doing.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Lastly, if you are using a Kenwood 870, I wouldn't recommend using it on 12 meters with the new proposed limits. The ARRL tests show the IM3 down only -20 db which would violate the new bandwidth limits.

Jim
WA0LYK>>>

Actually it probably won't flunk the proposed regulation Jim.

The proposed regulation only defines how the rig performs in actual use, not in a two-tone test. Speech has the highest concentration of energy in a fairly narrow range. The extreme lows and highs roll off quite a bit, and mixing of an actual natural sounding voice signal is not nearly as bad as with a two-tone test signal with equal tones.

It's only when we bring the levels of the extreme bass and treble frequencies up or park near weak signals (especially narrow signals) that odd-order IM becomes a problem.

I think it might be a good idea to let others, especially manufacturers, THINK some rigs will fail based on the poor IM performance. They won't put out rigs that are a few dB better than class C.

Regulating overall bandwidth in operation is an excellent technical step forward. It will weed out poor ALC designs and poor power supply dynamics that fail to cause problems in two-tone tests. It will also reduce misuse of equipment by defining how much is too much.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N6AYJ on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom, you are entitled to your opinions, but you AREN'T entitled to make other amateurs operate the way you say they should, merely because you think your opinions are so absolutely fabulous. Thank you for pointing out problems with the circuit design of my transceiver that nobody but you realized existed, but I really don't want to have to buy a new radio just because my old one offends your elevated sensibilities. I am glad you're such a superior operator, but would you please just let the rest of us operate the way we want? Thank you.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Okay, so now I get it. Tom doesn't like better sounding signals and increased intelligibility because it adds a couple dB of IMD to the bands. Which, according to him are crowded, implying that if I increase the noise floor 2dB (I made that value up, I haven't made a measurement yet) on a band that has an S8 noise level already (for instance) he can somehow tell. I suppose if we were talking < -120dBm noise floors he'd have a point, but on a typical day or night, 40 or 75m has nothing close to that.

So yes, a wider signal with low frequency energy has more IMD. How much I haven't measured yet, but you can bet that I will. The plan is to use the same recorded sentence played through the rig at the same volume level. One will be ESSB, one will be 300-3k SSB. I doubt I will get to it this weekend, and I'm going out of town all next week. It will be a worthy experiment. On a typical HF band though, I highly doubt that you will notice the difference in practice. It's like getting rid of your 1300W amp to buy one that runs 1500W. Nobody will see the difference in the "real world".

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
******** *****

Tom W8JI

Actually it probably won't flunk the proposed regulation Jim.

The proposed regulation only defines how the rig performs in actual use, not in a two-tone test.

****************

Actually, I can find no definition in the actual proposed rulemaking that says this. I can't even find a reference to an accepted measurement plan. Can you point me to a paragraph reference that says this. Perhaps you are aware of ex parte conversations the ARRL has had with the FCC but they certainly haven't been made public.

I sincerely doubt the FCC will be put in the position of trying to arbitrate an interference complaint from some vague description that is not technically rigorous. I suspect they will require a well defined measurement technique. I certainly would. Otherwise, it means nothing.



***********
Speech has the highest concentration of energy in a fairly narrow range. The extreme lows and highs roll off quite a bit, and mixing of an actual natural sounding voice signal is not nearly as bad as with a two-tone test signal with equal tones.
*************

A two-tone test is not a very severe test of a transmitter. The tones used are well within the audio passband and they are usually only at a level to generate rated output. Using an input of white/pink noise would be much more severe. However, the two tone test is a well defined, technically rigorous measurement technique that has been designed to be a reasonable predictor of actual operation.

Speech is only one use of a SSB transmitter. How about the digital folks that input multi-tones from a modem? These tones are usually at the same level and do not "roll off" as you go up or down in frequency. This is actually more severe than a two tone test isn't it? Are they going to be allowed to have a wider occupied bandwidth than voice operators just because of the poor definition of bandwidth? The PSK31 operators have found you can't use just TWO tones and run the rig at rated power with the ALC at the top and have acceptable IMD. The digital modems will generate a much higher power level in their IM3 and IM5 products which will cause much more interference than that caused by regular speech through a transmitter. Is this fair from an interference standpoint?

Again, the proposal itself is extremely inadequate from a technical standpoint. It is embarassing that someone could file a document like this and claim it is technically adequate!

*****************
I think it might be a good idea to let others, especially manufacturers, THINK some rigs will fail based on the poor IM performance. They won't put out rigs that are a few dB better than class C.
****************

I certainly agree here.


****************
Regulating overall bandwidth in operation is an excellent technical step forward. It will weed out poor ALC designs and poor power supply dynamics that fail to cause problems in two-tone tests. It will also reduce misuse of equipment by defining how much is too much.

****************

I agree completely, but the measurement techniques MUST be technically rigorous, repeatable, and fair to everyone.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
w8ji
"The proposed regulation only defines how the rig performs in actual use, not in a two-tone test.

This isn't what I read. Nor is it consistent with how one is supposed to determine if equipment is allowed on the 60m freqencies, at least according to what I have read. Is there a reference somewhere I can look at?

w8ji:
"Speech has the highest concentration of energy in a fairly narrow range. The extreme lows and highs roll off quite a bit, and mixing of an actual natural sounding voice signal is not nearly as bad as with a two-tone test signal with equal tones. "

Here is my understanding of the subject. Audio freq's below 500hz contribute little to intelligiblity. Frequencies above 3khz contribute significantly to the intelligibility of certain sounds such as the "ce" in rice. A long term integrattion of a male voice puts the 200-500hz range at about 65dbSPL and the 2-4khz range at about 45dbSPL. The 2-4khz range contributes over 60% of the intelligibility of speech and the 0-500hz range only about 10%. That is why speech processing (e.g. compression) that knocks out the lows and emphasizes the highs can add so much to intelligibility. Remember the old wireline telephone system used to knock out frequencies above 3khz which is why it can be so difficult to distinguish the difference between some sounds such as "s" and "f". This is one big reason for the use of phonetics - to overcome this intelligibility problem in communication systems using frequency restricted audio.

w8ji:
"It's only when we bring the levels of the extreme bass and treble frequencies up or park near weak signals (especially narrow signals) that odd-order IM becomes a problem. "

But the high end is exactly where EXPERIMENTATION may need to be done on intelligibility of analog voice communication systems.

Eliminating experimentation chances by artificially restricting bandwidths would seem to be at odds with one of the stated goals of the Amateur Radio Service.

The mere fact that the ARRL is pushing a plan that will restrict experimentation possibilities should be a tipoff to everyone that they are no longer concerned with the traditional goals of the ARS and that they are pushing an agenda that is questionable.

While IMD can be a problem, it is difficult to measure the absolute bandwidth it causes. That is why the stated regulations today are so valuable. They basically state that you should operate in an acceptable manner and not cause interference. No measurement of absolute bandwidth is needed (or even desirable).

w8ji:
"I think it might be a good idea to let others, especially manufacturers, THINK some rigs will fail based on the poor IM performance. They won't put out rigs that are a few dB better than class C. "

While this is certainly a laudable goal I have to believe that a better way to accomplish it is to better instruct the amateur radio population in the technical side of the art.

"Regulating overall bandwidth in operation is an excellent technical step forward. It will weed out poor ALC designs and poor power supply dynamics that fail to cause problems in two-tone tests. It will also reduce misuse of equipment by defining how much is too much. "

I pretty much disagree with this. It is nothing more than a step forward in restricting amateur radio operators to being appliance operators of FCC type-accepted equipment - ala the CB band and the marine band. Regulation of bandwidth should be done as a matter of course of setting up your station to operate in as professional, considerate manner as possible. It should not have to be IMPOSED from the outside.

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8ER on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom and Guys,

Just a couple of points on what Tom said:


>>All that aside, the most important point is wondering if this is a needless new restriction.

I say no. It is simply a clarification of technical requirements that already exist. >>

Not true Tom. If it were just a clarification .. eh OK but his is a total realignment of the subbands by bandwidth and the proposal is not really spelling out the details of how that bandwidth is to be measured (I put a "D" on the end because I didn't want to open old wounds! :-)

>>We also need a tool that gets the attention of manufacturers to not let radios get any worse than they are. <snip>
Commercial two-way radios are moving towards space conservation because the FCC now requires actual voice bandwidth testing for type acceptance. While not a perfect system, it is a giant step in the right direction.>>

Since most of our commercially manufactured gear goes through a "type acceptance" process, I agree. It's a perfect way to help control the problem without unnecessary part 97 restrictions.

>>A move like that would reduce enforcement time because it wouldn't take 30 letters and five sessions in Federal courts to decide what we should do to behave properly.>>

If you remember though that the FCC doesn't want to be in the enforcement business and this proposal forces that. I would say that the perfect argument against the ARRL proposal is to point out the extra involvement that would be required by the FCC to mediate bandwidth disputes! Would you want to answer those kinds of calls for even ONE DAY?

>>What we should be doing, rather than tossing the baby out with the bathwater, is forcing the ARRL to use some common sense. >>

Did you ever try to reason with a female having a occurence of PMS? That's why God had to invent lawyers!


>>If wide-fi boys want a place, if the AM boys want a place, and the spread spectrum want a place, there should be a reasonable wide mode area>>

Tom I don't want to hit a raw nerve here but honestly I think the 160 plan works well most of the time. There are rotten eggs in the barrel but for the most part I was real interested in the 160 CW SS recently. I listened to the band much of the weekend and here a distinct absence of phone .. period. The moment the contest was over, 160 was a huge solid CQ 160. I would love your comments as they pertain to the ARRL proposal and what you think would happen if they did the other bands the same way, that is .. "here are your band edges, stay within them."

Education yes but can we really teach the necessary skills and procure the necessary equipment to accurately measure bandwidth? That's the problem with the concept the the ARRL is trying to push forward!

--Larry W8ER
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
***********

Tom W8JI
Well, I guess WaltÔŅĹs still doesn't realize a perfectly stock FT1000MP that sounds GREAT with a good microphone, or dozens of other rigs on the market today (probably all of them), easily passes the dreaded 3 kHz proposal that started all this. So do most of my 30 year old SSB rigs, save that poor Central Electronics 20A phasing rig with the command set VFO!
***************

Look through the ARRL extended tests. You will be amazed at the number of rigs whose IM3 exceeds -26 db on various bands. As I stated before, the Kenwood 870 is one of them.

The FT1000MP runs at about -30 db on 20, 18, 15, 12, and 10 meters.

Beware the ARRL statements about these being the WORST CASE measurements. Their actual test procedures have the technician adjust the two-tone generator, mic gain, and drive levels to get the BEST IMD performance.

Now I know we can argue about what "is" is. To a technican, best IMD should mean lowest level. To me, the only way you can say WORST CASE is if the controls are adjusted for the highest level of IMD. Let see, in this case, WORST CASE means adjusting the controls for the best (highest level)IMD. Doesn't add up.

Secondly, very suspicious is the "rated power" shown on all the graphs. They ALL show 100W (for 100W transceivers). When you look at the form for recording test results, 100W is prefilled in. Now I know you have seen enough tranceivers to know they don't leave the factory ALL putting out EXACTLY 100W. I've seen enough to know some put out 90W, some 96W, and some 120W and every value in between. What! You say the factory specially aligns them for the ARRL tests! Makes you wonder what leaves the assembly line, is put in a box and delivered to your doorstep doesn't it?

Anyway, if the ARRL tests are actually the BEST CASE, i.e. the lowest IMD you can obtain, you can assume in the field the IMD will always be worse. Now -30 db is pretty close to -26 db. Are all FT100MP's always aligned properly throughout their life? No component changes or failures? No operator error? It wouldn't take much to have the IM3 products exceed -26 db.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
********
--Larry W8ER
Education yes but can we really teach the necessary skills and procure the necessary equipment to accurately measure bandwidth? That's the problem with the concept the the ARRL is trying to push forward!
**********

Maybe we ought to buy radio shops and start pushing FOR the proposal!!!!!

Then we could drum up business by making FCC complaints about people's bandwidths!!!! Hell, we could make the complaint, then call the ham and offer to help him with the complaint by making a spectrum analyzer measurement on his transmitter, for a fee of course. Must be at least a million transmitters out there.

HI HI

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Jim-WA0LYK said:

A two-tone test is not a very severe test of a transmitter. The tones used are well within the audio passband and they are usually only at a level to generate rated output. Using an input of white/pink noise would be much more severe. However, the two tone test is a well defined, technically rigorous measurement technique that has been designed to be a reasonable predictor of actual operation.

Speech is only one use of a SSB transmitter. How about the digital folks that input multi-tones from a modem? These tones are usually at the same level and do not "roll off" as you go up or down in frequency. This is actually more severe than a two tone test isn't it? Are they going to be allowed to have a wider occupied bandwidth than voice operators just because of the poor definition of bandwidth? The PSK31 operators have found you can't use just TWO tones and run the rig at rated power with the ALC at the top and have acceptable IMD. The digital modems will generate a much higher power level in their IM3 and IM5 products which will cause much more interference than that caused by regular speech through a transmitter. Is this fair from an interference standpoint?

N3JI >> Good points, Jim. When I have my rig on the bench, I'll run white & pink noise through it as well as a two-tone test. Maybe I'll run some PSK31 at various levels, too.

Joe
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W4VR on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The FCC has been in the de-regulatory mood for many years, and as a result it has been able to significantly reduce its monitoring and enforcement assets. It is clear to me that the ARRL proposal would impose additional regulation on ham operators which would be directly proportional to increased FCC monitoring and enforcement activity. I believe that the FCC will take a dim view of such a proposal for the amateur bands. The ARRL proposal runs counter to what the FCC has long sought in order to minimize its role in enforcement of the proper use of amateur radio spectrum. How many times have I heard from our regulators when addressing band plans, "we want to impose as little regulation as possible on amateur operators because they are self-policing."; a good example is their ruling concerning the 160-meter re-alignment proposal. Notwithstanding, it should be clear to everyone that the ARRL proposal is an outright attempt to put Hi-Fi SSB enthusiasts out of business once and for all.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Anyway, if the ARRL tests are actually the BEST CASE, i.e. the lowest IMD you can obtain, you can assume in the field the IMD will always be worse. Now -30 db is pretty close to -26 db. Are all FT100MP's always aligned properly throughout their life? No component changes or failures? No operator error? It wouldn't take much to have the IM3 products exceed -26 db.
Jim
WA0LYK>>>>

I must not have made my point well.

I agree the ARRL two-tone test is a best case test. In the real world IM will always be worse.

The thing I tried to point out, and obviously did a poor job, was the proposed regulation does not deal with a two tone test. It deals with voice modulation.

With a normal voice, if you don't pump the bass and the highs way up, there is enough rolloff between wide spaced tones occuring at the same instant the BW rolloff (including IM3) is much better than we might expect to see with a two tone or swept tone test.

The FT1000MP I tested isn't actually as good as the ARRL tests. With voice, even with internal processing on, it exceeds the proposed 3kHz spec by a significantly better margin than it does in a two tone or swept tone test.

After Dayton, when I have time, I'll post some spectrum displays of bandwidth and you'll see what I mean. It's very easy to see how an equalizer can erase the adjacent channel IM improvement a normal voice signal offers over what we might expect from a two-tone test.

We can't use IM3 two-tone test as a example of how a rig will behacve with voice....unless we plan on running exactly the same levels of multiple tones into the mic jack from our audio equalizer.

I agree rigs COULD and absolutely should be much better, but with the "anything you do in manufacturing is OK" system we have now things won't improve. As an example it took Yaesu years to even start to address and patch CW bandwidth issues that really only take changing the value of a few components.

I would hope we aren't silly enough to bring technical standards down to levels that match poor engineering, rather than picking reasonable standards any of us can meet.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom,

*******

Exactly which paragraph in the proposed rule changes do you read that the 3 kHz standard only applies to voice modulation?


*******


I have read the proposed rules changes several times and haven't found it. Maybe I am looking at an old copy.

Although we have dealt mainly with SSB here, I have the same concerns with the 500 Hz bandwidth limitation.

The new regulations must also deal with digital modems both data and voice using SSB mode. These don't use "voice" modulation with speech characteristics. Will they fit into the 3 kHz limit? You already said the yaseu won't fit properly with two tones, how about with 16 tones from an AOR digital voice modem?

Jim
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom

<<We can't use IM3 two-tone test as a example of how a rig will behacve with voice....unless we plan on running exactly the same levels of multiple tones into the mic jack from our audio equalizer.>>

Isn't this exactly what a digital modem does? Aren't they going to be allowed in the 3 kHz spectrum? Aren't we going to have to deal with their occupied bandwidths?

Jim
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tom,

<<<After Dayton, when I have time, I'll post some spectrum displays of bandwidth and you'll see what I mean. It's very easy to see how an equalizer can erase the adjacent channel IM improvement a normal voice signal offers over what we might expect from a two-tone test.>>>

Are your displays snap-shots? A two tone test is steady state so a snap shot works fine. I've been told to adequately display voice bandwidth you need a special spectrum analyzer that will accumulate over several minutes to accurately assess the impact of a transmitter's performance.

Jim
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB7JK on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
What is SSB?
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KC9OD on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
SSB is a technically superior method of tranmitting baseband information without also transmitting the "carrier" which serves to demodulate the signal in simple shortwave receivers,for instance. The use of ssb pretty much spelled the end of swl to ham as a hobby path.

The mania to throw away the vital information contained in speech puzzles me. I have heard roundtable qsos in which I could not distinguish the participants except by announced callsigns;this is the ideal ??!!

Rigs here are of several manufacturers and I actually prefer my Swan's 2.7(6db points) over the narrower filters in the Heath,Yaesu,Swan and Icom. One of these days I will try out the Kachina and it variable computer controlled bandwidth.

It's time to force everyone into Hyundais because we all share the public roads and no one really needs more room!
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

Are your displays snap-shots? A two tone test is steady state so a snap shot works fine. I've been told to adequately display voice bandwidth you need a special spectrum analyzer that will accumulate over several minutes to accurately assess the impact of a transmitter's performance. Jim>>

Try this Jim.

http://www.w8ji.com/IC751A%20SSB%20measurements.htm
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by HAMDUDE on May 7, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
ESSB=Oh boy,do I sound good! Listen to my rack of fifteen processor boxes and my Neuman studio microphone.I just have to run a mike with 20-20k frequency response just so I can brag about what it costs.I cant figure out why those damn ragchewers insist on running 3khz from us,they are in my bandpass! After all,to enjoy this great sounding audio my pals transmit,I have to listen 6khz wide.Why bother to go into the mike jack with all this great audio stuff?Id rather go into the back of the radio so it bypasses the alc and extends my bass!I just got done soldering in my 4khz sideband filter from inrad.Man,Im a big dog now! Its too bad those guys up and down the band are complaining,but boy do I sound good.I sound so good in my headphones that Im getting an erection!This is even better than viagra!As a matter of fact,my head is so big I cant keep the headphones on my head because my audio sounds sooooooooo good!!!!!!Look at me,I spent more than you did on your rack and your mike!Mines bigger than yours is ha ha!Those guys complaining about the splatter just have lousy receivers,it cant be my station thats splattering.I checked it on my whizbang state of the art scope and its perfectly clean at 8khz wide.Next week Im going to get my 6khz sideband filter from inrad so I can be a bigger dog and sound even better!Whats that you say?I need more bass?Im only running 135db of bass now,maybe I should go buy another toy to connect to this thing so I can sound better?
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 7, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
w8ji:

I suggest you look at the FCC regs for type-accepted equipment which already operate under bandwidth regulation for guidance on what will be applied to the amateur radio spectrum under bandwidth regulation.

Two-tone testing will almost certainly be required as will measurement of the radiated footprint by a spectrum analyzer to insure compliance with a standard spectrum mask.

Bye-Bye homebrew unless you have an expensive spectrum analyzer. Bye-bye working on your own type-accepted equipment unless you have a spectrum analyzer.

Bye-bye to much of the equipment now operating on the ham bands unless you have a spectrum analyzer (and even some of it may not be able to be adjusted to give adequate operation).

TITLE 47--TELECOMMUNICATION

CHAPTER I--FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

PART 2_FREQUENCY ALLOCATIONS AND RADIO TREATY MATTERS; GENERAL RULES AND
REGULATIONS--Table of Contents

Subpart J_Equipment Authorization Procedures

Sec. 2.1046 Measurements required: RF power output.

(a) For transmitters other than single sideband, independent sideband and controlled carrier radiotelephone, power output shall be measured at the RF output terminals when the transmitter is adjusted in
accordance with the tune-up procedure to give the values of current and voltage on the circuit elements specified in Sec. 2.1033(c)(8). The electrical characteristics of the radio frequency load attached to the output terminals when this test is made shall be stated.
(b) For single sideband, independent sideband, and single channel, controlled carrier radiotelephone transmitters the procedure specified in paragraph (a) of this section shall be employed and, in addition, the
transmitter shall be modulated during the test as follows. In all tests, the input level of the modulating signal shall be such as to develop rated peak envelope power or carrier power, as appropriate, for the transmitter.
(1) Single sideband transmitters in the A3A or A3J emission modes-- by two tones at frequencies of 400 Hz and 1800 Hz (for 3.0 kHz authorized bandwidth), or 500 Hz and 2100 Hz (3.5 kHz authorized bandwidth), or 500 Hz and 2400 Hz (for 4.0 kHz authorized bandwidth),
applied simultaneously, the input levels of the tones so adjusted that the two principal frequency components of the radio frequency signal produced are equal in magnitude.
(2) Single sideband transmitters in the A3H emission mode--by one tone at a frequency of 1500 Hz (for 3.0 kHz authorized bandwidth), or 1700 Hz (for 3.5 kHz authorized bandwidth), or 1900 Hz (for 4.0 kHz
authorized bandwidth), the level of which is adjusted to produce a radio frequency signal component equal in magnitude to the magnitude of the carrier in this mode.
(3) As an alternative to paragraphs (b) (1) and (2) of this section other tones besides those specified may be used as modulating frequencies, upon a sufficient showing of need. However, any tones so chosen must not be harmonically related, the third and fifth order
intermodulation products which occur must fall within the -25 dB step of the emission bandwidth limitation curve, the seventh and ninth order intermodulation product must fall within the 35 dB step of the
referenced curve and the eleventh and all higher order products must fall beyond the -35 dB step of the referenced curve.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA1RNE on May 7, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
After reading as much of this as I could stand, it's now confirmed: the ARRL's bandwidth proposal is fantasy rhetoric from those who are, once again, focusing on the wrong issues.

The amateur service was originally set up by design so that each station licesnsee would not require lab or broadcast engineering instrumentation to operate a station. Common sense strikes again.

Since a means of accurately measuring or checking FREQUENCY has always been available, be it a xtal controlled marker or a frequency counter, the rules were written to to ensure out of band operation did not occur.

If you're running SSB, you stay at least 3500 hz away from band edges - period, end of story. After that, it's all good operating practices and common courtesy. Unfortunately, some hams don't know how to be courteous, nothing new here. Some people are just rude to begin with, but, eh, such is life.

What does make sense is this: It would seem this nonsense is just a preemptive ploy by the ARRL to create bandwidth-divided segments to pave the way for enhanced digital modes and automation.

I hope everyone can read through this stealth manuevering. We already have an Internet; we don't need worldwide IoHR, Internet over Ham Radio.

Until manufacturers can build cheap spectrum analyzers into $800 - $1300 tranceivers, the rules will remain the same, unless we all fall for this nonsense, or come the day when the U.S. outsources everything to the max and the Chinese start building $50 stand-alone Spectrum Analyzers. Hams are a pretty frugal crowd; they won't buy anything that doesn't enhance talk power or code speed.

Time to get real, folks......
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8MW on May 7, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
It never ceases to amaze me how quick some people are to throw away the flexibility and diversity that allows this to be amateur radio. Yeah, amateur radio where amateurs (not professionals) can use all types of transmitters (not type accepted) in ham shacks (not laboratories) on amateur frequencies (not life & death first responder frequencies) to pursue legally authorized, personal interests.

In every case of an individual or an organization pushing for a one-size-fits-all approach to what we do and the equipment we do it with, someone's ego and/or agenda is always attached.

Conrol freaks everywhere: Get out of my hobby.

73 Mike
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WPE9JRL on May 7, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
We really don't need to be told what bandwidth we can occupy with our outdated analog mode(s) of SSB, CW, AM, FM.

We should be able to use any bandwidth we choose. This is amateur radio. We are experimenters by nature and should do as we see fit within reason.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA6BFH on May 7, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Why do you guys use abbreviations!!!!!!!!!

Tell the new Hamís what Inter-modulation is, and how and why it occurs!

Tell them how non-linearity can occur as an off-set electron bias within solid state devices!

Tell them what dynamic range really means, especially at low voltage (purportedly linear current curves).

Why do you make this a mystery -- if you really want our hobby to endure?

WA1RNE, I tend to trust your assessments and motives but, even you should think about where our {scientific} hobby is going.

We are all doomed!
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by VA7OJ on May 8, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The Canadian amateur radio regulations (Industry Canada RIC-2) specify maximum occupied bandwidth per channel, irrespective of emission type. The occupied bandwidth is defined as the signal bandwidth at the -26 dBc points.

The maximum permitted occupied bandwidth per channel in the amateur bands below 30 MHz is 6 kHz, except for 30m (1 kHz) and 10m (20 kHz).

There are no sub-bands by emission type or licence grade. All ITU-authorised emissions are permitted.

73, Adam VA7OJ/AB4OJ
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K0RGR on May 8, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
This proposal hasn't even been formally proposed, and it's already looking like a goner. We seem to have the anti-WINLINK forces coupled with the ESSBers, along with a few FISTers who are convinced that it's all a plot to wipe out CW. Nobody, including me, likes everything about it.

The Canadian band plan looks better every minute. I say, scrap this plan, and follow the VE plan. Instead of limiting priveleges by frequency subbands, do it by power levels. Novices and Techs 50 watts, Generals 250 Watts, everybody else 1500 watts. Deregulation for all!
No subbands of any kind, just like the rest of the world.

Now, how many of you would be happy with that?

This proposal was intended to simplify things, and it actually does when you consider that there are a lot more modes these days than just "phone" and "CW.

Maybe we just aren't thinking outside the box enough.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 8, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hey all you guys up NORTH!

Does the Canadian plan have a technically rigorous technique for measuring occupied bandwidth at 6 kHz? Is it defined in the rules or do you just decide what the input is to get the output you want, hi hi?

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA1RNE on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Bill, K0RJR;

I'm in agreement with most of your proposal. I actually wrote a similar proposal and posted it on eHam about 9 months ago. Like the Canadian system, we should be able to operate anywhere in the band using any mode.

At the time, I think it was considered a little too "Out of the Box". I think the reason against this is like anything else in the U.S. amateur service;

>The ARRL is looked upon as the defacto decision making body and tends to suffer from the "if it wasn't invented here it's no good" syndrome. No one else has the insite to come up with an original idea and constructive changes to the service.

>Anything "Out of the Box" is associate with being "radical" in the worst way imaginable and automatically needs to be locked back in the box.

My proposal also included power restrictions but only in a specific band segment for Technician Class operators to reduce QRM. Tech's would be limited to 100-200 watts output on HF. this would be similar to the old Novice segment from years ago which I thought worked very well.



Jim, WA0LYK: Here's the link to the Canadian amateur regulations document RIC-2:

(thank you VA7OJ for pointing this out.)

http://strategis.ic.gc.ca/epic/internet/insmt-gst.nsf/vwapj/ric2.PDF/$FILE/ric2.PDF



Refer to sections 4 and 13, "Bandwidths" and "Measurements" respectively. I think you will conclude that although Canada does require operators to monitor signal bandwidth, I think they realize that 99% don't actually have the ability to do so - at least not with high precision.

Be it the current regulations or our new ideas, what it all boils down to is this: since we're talking about the AMATEUR SERVICE, which is a non-commercial, non-military service, it is understood that bandwidth measurements need not monitored with the same precision. Not that there should be no attempt to limit bandwidth at all; some known good practices come into play, like adhering to standard amplifier adjustment procedures (read your operating manual) using ALC correctly, watch your average plate current while speaking. Yes, the peak to average ratio varies with ones voice, but it's better than totally ignoring any instrumentation you have.

It should also be understood that being an Amateur service or any other that implies experimentation is taking place, operators need to be respectful of other's and be prepared to be flexible. That is, if you're running ESSB or digital or AM or SSTV, be prepared to shift frequency as needed to accomodate others. As well, if you're speech processor or mike gain is cranked too high or if you're amplifier is misadjusted causing splatter, be prepared to do something about - especially if someone KINDLY brings it to your attention.

Kindness, flexibility and good old common sense will certainly go along way in making any proposal work.

Chris, WA1RNE
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Here's the problem I see with the bandwidth limit. Once written into the FCC regulations it carries the force of law. The FCC will be very loath to put something into the regulations that they will have to enforce sooner or later that can not be measured in a technically rigorous and repeatable manner. Their enforcement decisions can be appealed to a federal court and believe me some fool somewhere will do that. The FCC will want supportable data for these cases.

They already have well defined measurements for commercial systems, and I suspect that in the absence of other recommendations this is what they would fall back on. You don't want that and neither do I. It will be a slippery slope to channelized, type accepted equipment.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by NS6Y_ on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Oh come on folks! This is probably a last-gasp effort by the lids at Ten-Wreck who are afraid some of their production "rigs' may get tested, they want the bandwidth widened so their illegal junk can be declared legal - of course the poor suckers who buy their overpriced unsupported qwap still have to buy a bunch of filters, and practically rebuild the things using outside information.

There's already a band for illegal, poorly made, band-splattering junk, it's called CB, 11 meters is good for skip too, go at it. I'm sure there are CB mods for Ten-Wreck junk, that's all that stuff's good for.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
NS6Y,

I am not associated with Ten Tec, don't own any of their rigs and never have, and don't own any stock in them either.

My comments have nothing to do with any manufacturer other than even the best stuff has problems. Do you want to violate FCC regs simply by operating, if one of your rigs have a problem you don't know about?

Ethical people act ethically even when no one is watching. Will you operate if you have ANY doubts about your rig under this plan? Will you use accessory different microphones like the Icom SM-20 if you don't know what it does to your signal?

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
wa1rne:

"Refer to sections 4 and 13, "Bandwidths" and "Measurements" respectively. I think you will conclude that although Canada does require operators to monitor signal bandwidth, I think they realize that 99% don't actually have the ability to do so - at least not with high precision. "

I actually don't conclude this at all. The regulations are pretty specific.

"The bandwidth of a signal shall be determined
by measuring the frequency band occupied by that
signal at a level that is 26db below the maximum
amplitude of that signal"

In fact it would appear to me to be MORE stringent that the FCC regulations for type-accepted equipment that only have to meet requirements for a two-tone test. The regulation above applies to ANY signal transmitted by a Canadian amateur. I'm not sure how you would measure this unless you monitor your signal at all times using a spectrum analyer.

Even the measurement section says:

An amateur station shall be equipped with a
means of:

(b) *indicating* or preventing overmodulation of
the transmitter in the case of a radiotelephone
transmitter.

(emphasis on "indicating" is mine, ab0wr)

I guess it could be debated whether poorly designed mixers or non-linear amplifier sections cause "overmodulation" because of 3rd and 5th order IMD products. Since, however, overmodulation of a transmitter DOES cause IMD, I would err on the side of wanting to insure that my 3rd and 5th order products on any signal I sent did not cause my bandwidth to exceed 6khz. Again, monitoring with a spectrum analyzer would seem to be indicated.

If you want to argue that the Canadian government doesn't strictly enforce the regulations I might buy that. But it doesn't appear that the regulations, as worded, provide much leeway at all.

I suspect that any FCC regulations implementing bandwidth regulations will be as equally strict, if for no other reason than to give the FCC something to fall back on in case of disputes which could even be taken to the courts. It's in the nature of bureaucrats to cover their butts in all areas. The FCC doesn't seem to be any different from what I see.

I truly fear the law of unintended consequences. The sad thing is that the ARRL doesn't seem to have *any* handle on *any* consequences - let alone the unintended ones. The use of DSB transmitters which are easily built by novices and those just learning RF homebrew would be eliminated under the ARRL plan, and they don't seem to care. Experimenting means more than advancing the frontiers - it is also a means of learning from the ground up. Again, the ARRL seems to have lost sight of that goal in their rush to make the ham bands into wireless internet email conduits.


tim ab0wr
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by VU2PEP on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
HI-FI audio freaks need to understand the amount of
splatter they cause does not serve the cause of Ham radio. Guys investing 4000 USD for the studio equipment on a 2000 dollar rig makes no sense. A good mic or even a cheap HC-4 will do the trick.
I guess the HI-FI lobby is strong enough to push through this proposal. It would be better if these
guys could migrate to the 10M FM band, it is the only place for them on the HF spectrum. Amateur radio is for the mortals who use the 2.4 Kz SSB and not for the HI-FI gang.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N9WB on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
VU2PEP Wrote:
HI-FI audio freaks need to understand the amount of
splatter they cause does not serve the cause of Ham radio.

...............................
Reply:

Since I am not interested in a particular aspect of the hobby it should be banned!

Some DXíers run a lot of high frequency boost and processing and drive their amps hard. Sometimes DX stations listen over a 10 kHz or more range of frequencies causing a 10 or 15 kHz wide pile So the DX freaks need to understand the amount of splatter they cause does not serve the cause of Ham radio. So we had better ban DX.

Contests take up a lot of spectrum and sometimes contesters run a lot of high frequency boost and processing and drive their amps hard. Contest freaks need to understand the amount of splatter they cause does not serve the cause of Ham radio. We should ban contests.

Several one on one rag chew QSOís use a lot more spectrum space than if all those people would operate on one frequency in a net. Rag chew freaks need to understand the amount of bandwidth they use does not serve the cause of Ham radio. So we need to ban rag chewing.

SSTV ties up spectrum for long periods of time, when these pictures could be sent over the Internet. SSTV freaks need to understand the amount of time that they use bandwidth does not serve the cause of Ham radio. So we should ban SSTV.

Digital modes clutter the bands with all kinds of annoying noises and obnoxious sounds. Digital freaks need to understand transmitting silly noised does not serve the cause of Ham radio. So we must ban all digital modes.

Now there will be plenty of room for all of us!

Vy 73, Walt N9WB






 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
NS6Y Said:
Oh come on folks! This is probably a last-gasp effort by the lids at Ten-Wreck who are afraid some of their production "rigs' may get tested, they want the bandwidth widened so their illegal junk can be declared legal - of course the poor suckers who buy their overpriced unsupported qwap still have to buy a bunch of filters, and practically rebuild the things using outside information.

There's already a band for illegal, poorly made, band-splattering junk, it's called CB, 11 meters is good for skip too, go at it. I'm sure there are CB mods for Ten-Wreck junk, that's all that stuff's good for.

N3JI >> If this is the typical mentality of those that wish to resrict Amateur Radio, then the choice is obvious.

I own a Ten-Tec Jupiter, and I would buy another one or an Orion over the 756Pro series, 7800, or most other rigs. My Jupiter is one of the best performing rigs I've ever sat in front of (and there are no optional filters for it), and the Orion is just flat excellent. It's amazing that people feel justified in making these kinds of statements.

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
VU2PEP Said:
HI-FI audio freaks need to understand the amount of
splatter they cause does not serve the cause of Ham radio. Guys investing 4000 USD for the studio equipment on a 2000 dollar rig makes no sense. A good mic or even a cheap HC-4 will do the trick.
I guess the HI-FI lobby is strong enough to push through this proposal. It would be better if these
guys could migrate to the 10M FM band, it is the only place for them on the HF spectrum. Amateur radio is for the mortals who use the 2.4 Kz SSB and not for the HI-FI gang.

N3JI >> I spent less than $2000 for my rig *AND* audio gear (all brand new). And it does *NOT* create "splatter". "Splatter" comes from the guys trying score that last point in a contest or that last DX contact cranking all the knobs to the right and compressing their audio into shrillness while driving their amps at 2 or 3 times what they're supposed to be giving it on top of 19 other guys doing the same thing all at once (READ: Intentional QRM). I challenge you to find a SINGLE ESSB op producing splatter. A clean 4 or 6k envelope is not the answer.

Another example of someone that doesn't have a clue how this works or what they're missing.

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

>RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal Reply
by AB0WR on May 9, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

I'm not sure how you would measure this unless you monitor your signal at all times using a spectrum analyer.

Even the measurement section says:

An amateur station shall be equipped with a
means of:

(b) *indicating* or preventing overmodulation of
the transmitter in the case of a radiotelephone
transmitter.

I guess it could be debated whether poorly designed mixers or non-linear amplifier sections cause "overmodulation" because of 3rd and 5th order IMD products. Since, however, overmodulation of a transmitter DOES cause IMD, I would err on the side of wanting to insure that my 3rd and 5th order products on any signal I sent did not cause my bandwidth to exceed 6khz. Again, monitoring with a spectrum analyzer would seem to be indicated.<

WB2WIK comments:

And there lies the rub.

In discussing this "situation" with several hams on the air over the past month or so, it's very evident that many of the "technical audiophiles" who are ESSB proponents are actually nincompoops when it comes to understanding anything about bandwidth or distortion.

I've had guys tell me that they use "Hamalyzer" to determine another station's transmitted bandwidth. That would be quite a trick, considering "Hamalyzer" is a video display of demodulated audio that comes from a receiver, through a sound card, into a PCI slot and then gets processed. Demodulated audio has nothing whatever to do with bandwidth.

I've had guys give me 30-minute explanations about distortion, when in fact, distortion can be summed up very easily: It's all energy that's left in any signal after the desired content is removed.

WB2WIK/6

 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA1RNE on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tim;

I guess I should have stated this a little more clearly; sometimes I'm writing posts on my lunch hour, like today.

As you have said, [the Canadian regulations] are actually MORE stringent that the FCC regulations for type-accepted equipment that only have to meet requirements for a two-tone test.

What I'm saying is, most of us should conclude that allthough the Canadian regs require measurement of bandwidth, it is very unlikely that most Canadian hams have the equipment available to accurately do so because:

a) Cost. Few could justify the cost of a spectrum analyzer just for this purpose. Even the lowest cost handheld versions are 600% of the cost of a typical new HF tranceiver.

b) Most hams wouldn't know how to operate one - or would want to.

c) As you have stipulated, the Canadian government probably doesn't enforce this regulation.

But guess what? The ARRL's new bandwidth proposal would have the same problem.

I think 6 khz or more is not a big deal given the diverse modes we operate, the typical level of expertise of most operators and the average amount of stations operating on our bands at a given time.

I would deal with it the same way I would when it comes to frequency accuracy and ensuring I'm not running outside of the band. If you're running an old Boatanchor and the operating manual indicates the frequency response of the modulator is 300-8000 Hz, +/- 3db, I have a choice; limit my audio bandwidth or make sure my sidebands are not outside of the band edges or interfering with others.

The 6 Khz bandwidth specification would also be easier to deal with if we made our bands mode-independent.

The CW sections of our bands are under-utilized, with the exception of 60, 30, 17 and 12 meters - but CW can be operated in the Phone portion of ANY band. During contests, most CW operators huddle into the lower 50-75 Khz of the band because that's always been where the action is. But if I were running my AM rig under a more flexible bandplan, I would stay clear of this "hallowed ground". Why? Because it's common sense and because I believe in extending common courtesy to others.

Segmenting our bands by mode is OBSOLETE because it doesn't allow for flexible operation. If we were all Novices and running crystal control like circa 1980 or earlier, segmentation would be understandable, but that's clearly not the case.

I guess that's why we have Gentlemen's Agreements; if everything was strictly "legal" we would all drive each other crazy.......

73, Chris


 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N1HLE on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
3 Khz has the person or person's who authored this article listened to the bands lately. i can find a ham on 80 mtr at least 15 kc's away from where they are transmitting. i can see it now here comes a freq cop hey your transmitting at 3.01 Khz you better fix your radio. this will cause more problems that its worth.




73's N1HLE
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
n1hle:
"3 Khz has the person or person's who authored this article listened to the bands lately. i can find a ham on 80 mtr at least 15 kc's away from where they are transmitting. i can see it now here comes a freq cop hey your transmitting at 3.01 Khz you better fix your radio. this will cause more problems that its worth."

You hit the nail on the head. Anyone who says bandwidth regulation will LESSEN the load on the FCC probably hasn't thought the issue through completely.

Under bandwidth regulation, the FCC will have two choices:
1. Enforce the regulations
2. Don't enforce the regulations

Hams will have two choices:
1. Do the ethical thing and follow the regulations.
2. Do the unethical thing and ignore the regulations.

If the FCC decides to do No. 2, then why have any bandwidth regulations at all? Those hams who follow No. 2 will just do what they want and the bands would likely fall into chaos.

If the FCC decides to do No. 1, enforcement expenditures will be much higher than today. *Someone* will have to go around and make spectrum analyzer readings to prove or disprove complaints. That will fall onto the FCC if they wish to enforce the regulations. They will spend lots more time resolving gratuitious complaints from someone with a grudge against someone else than they do today.

Does anyone reading this truly believe that FCC No. 2 and Ham No. 1 will coincide in this society of ours today?

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
wa1rne:
"Segmenting our bands by mode is OBSOLETE because it doesn't allow for flexible operation. If we were all Novices and running crystal control like circa 1980 or earlier, segmentation would be understandable, but that's clearly not the case."

What makes it obsolete? The only legitimate problem that I have seen raised yet is that there is a problem doing mixed voice, text, graphics on a single frequency today.

This is a CONTENT problem, not a mode problem and certainly not a segmentation problem.

Fixing the content problem doesn't require throwing out what has been working for over 50 years. There will need to be a lot more justification in the form of spectrum efficiency studies, technical efficiency studies, interference studies, spectrum allocation studies, usage forecasts and the like to convince me that we are in the midst of a catastrophe in the ham bands and that the current regulation mode needs to be turned on its head.

I CERTAINLY don't buy a "trust me" recommendation from a committee violating its charter and which is not representative of the amateur universe as a whole!

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W3ULS on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Seems to me the ARRL is no longer a group of radio amateurs but a group of professional policy makers and we already have a whole federal government filled with bureaucrats of that ilk.
We know the result"

Well, you live In Connecticut, a high tax state, your pay is lousy, and promotion opportunites at ARRL are nil, meaning your pay is stagnant vs the CPI. So what do you do--besides moving on to more meaningful employment--to make yourself feel that your time in grade is justified?

You write rules. You really don't care if they are implemented, you just write them.

Think Hans Blix.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
WB2WIK comments:

And there lies the rub.

In discussing this "situation" with several hams on the air over the past month or so, it's very evident that many of the "technical audiophiles" who are ESSB proponents are actually nincompoops when it comes to understanding anything about bandwidth or distortion.

I've had guys tell me that they use "Hamalyzer" to determine another station's transmitted bandwidth. That would be quite a trick, considering "Hamalyzer" is a video display of demodulated audio that comes from a receiver, through a sound card, into a PCI slot and then gets processed. Demodulated audio has nothing whatever to do with bandwidth.

I've had guys give me 30-minute explanations about distortion, when in fact, distortion can be summed up very easily: It's all energy that's left in any signal after the desired content is removed.

WB2WIK/6

N3JI >> First of all, a spectum analyzer *IS* a radio receiver that demodulates and displays the information on a graphic display. Yes, the good ones have very good "receivers" in front of them, and are variable in terms of BW (as in instantaneous BW, display BW, and video BW).

As long as you know what your rig's receiver is and isn't showing you, there isn't anything wrong with using that method for determining *ROUGH* BW. Especially when some of the guys on "your side" are using the "fish-finder" scopes on their rigs as a reference (in reality, what's the difference??). I certainly wouldn't use it to make accurate measurements of IMD, but it will still show you generally what's happening. Is it perfectly accurate? Of course not -- but I will get a clear picture of what's going on directly around my envelope especially if I have a FLAT 8 or 12k RX), and I would be able to see when something's going wrong. That is all I need to know once I've proven my equipment with a real piece of test equipment. I would argue that even an Amateur with a spectrum analyzer wouldn't be much more reliable because I doubt he keeps it calibrated at the suggested interval. Most are probably years out of cal, some decades.

That said, I fortunately have access to calibrated test equipment in a full-blown RF lab. When I get my tests run, I know I'll be very close to any other lab's results.

You're a pretty smart guy, Steve -- I expect better than "All ESSB'ers are nincompoops" from you.

Joe, N3JI

 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

>N3JI >> First of all, a spectum analyzer *IS* a radio receiver that demodulates and displays the information on a graphic display. Yes, the good ones have very good "receivers" in front of them, and are variable in terms of BW (as in instantaneous BW, display BW, and video BW).<

WB2WIK replies:

That's not true at all. The spectrum analyzer doesn't demodulate anything, it provides a videographic representation of the actual received signal, *not* a demodulated one. The problem with Hamalyzer or any such display is that it's only showing what is demodulated. What if you use an SSB receiver to tune in a DSB signal? The demodulated signal only represents one of the two sidebands; the other sideband, which is not demodulated, could be 99% distortion, and 1 MHz wide, and you'd never see it.

>As long as you know what your rig's receiver is and isn't showing you, there isn't anything wrong with using that method for determining *ROUGH* BW.<

WB2WIK replies:

Sure there is. If I wanted a rough estimation, I'd just guess at it, I don't need equipment or software for that.

>Especially when some of the guys on "your side" are using the "fish-finder" scopes on their rigs as a reference (in reality, what's the difference??). I certainly wouldn't use it to make accurate measurements of IMD, but it will still show you generally what's happening. Is it perfectly accurate? Of course not -- but I will get a clear picture of what's going on directly around my envelope especially if I have a FLAT 8 or 12k RX), and I would be able to see when something's going wrong. That is all I need to know once I've proven my equipment with a real piece of test equipment. I would argue that even an Amateur with a spectrum analyzer wouldn't be much more reliable because I doubt he keeps it calibrated at the suggested interval. Most are probably years out of cal, some decades.<

WB2WIK replies:

That may be entirely true. I don't use a rig with an internal "spectrum display," but I have used them from time to time, going all the way back to the original rig with this feature, the Icom IC-780. Cute, and surely useful to operations, and certainly more indicative than "Hamalyzer" or anything that only works with demodulation.

>That said, I fortunately have access to calibrated test equipment in a full-blown RF lab. When I get my tests run, I know I'll be very close to any other lab's results.<

WB2WIK replies:

So do I. To effectively use this stuff requires not only the equipment but experience and training in its use, and often requires the use of very high-Q RF notch filters to filter out the primary signal and focus on everything else. To use it with a randomly modulated voice (SSB) off-the-air signal is quite a trick. The "issue" I have with ESSB proponents, who I did not declare as all nincompoops (I said "many," not most or all), is that many -- possibly most -- really have no idea what they're doing and are going by on-the-air reports provided by others who know about as much; or, they're using the demodulated signal provided by the MONITOR function of their transceiver; or, they're using the demodulated signal provided by a secondary receiver, simply to hone the shape of their modulated signal, without regard for the total effect or result of doing so. In many cases, the users are boosting low frequency modulation (< 300 Hz) to the great detriment of their signal and other spectrum users nearby.

>You're a pretty smart guy, Steve -- I expect better than "All ESSB'ers are nincompoops" from you.<

WB2WIK replies:

I didn't say that. I did say, "many," and I'll stick with that.

73!

Steve WB2WIK/6
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
N3JI,
WB2WIK,

I think you guys just illustrated why the FCC is going to want a well defined, technically rigorous, repeatable test if we go to a bandwidth regulated plan!

You also triggered a point for me. We will need both a lab test, i.e., two-tone test to evaluate transmitters and an on-the-air test to evaluate how that transmitter is actually being operated!

The Canadain plan looks better and better!

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>N3JI >> First of all, a spectum analyzer *IS* a radio receiver that demodulates and displays the information on a graphic display. Yes, the good ones have very good "receivers" in front of them, and are variable in terms of BW (as in instantaneous BW, display BW, and video BW).<

WB2WIK replies:

That's not true at all. The spectrum analyzer doesn't demodulate anything, it provides a videographic representation of the actual received signal, *not* a demodulated one. The problem with Hamalyzer or any such display is that it's only showing what is demodulated. What if you use an SSB receiver to tune in a DSB signal? The demodulated signal only represents one of the two sidebands; the other sideband, which is not demodulated, could be 99% distortion, and 1 MHz wide, and you'd never see it.

JI >> Demodulated was the wrong term. "Downconverted" was my intention. Looking at the demodulated audio will let you see when something's going wrong. And that's about all I would use it for. It will absolutely show you SSB BW (including any strange products outside of that) pretty closely, as long as you're using an RX filter that's wide enough. Will it show opposite SSB or carrier suppression? YES!! IF you swap sidebands or tune a little off freq. But, you have to know your receiver's capabilities and what you're seeing.

>As long as you know what your rig's receiver is and isn't showing you, there isn't anything wrong with using that method for determining *ROUGH* BW.<

WB2WIK replies:

Sure there is. If I wanted a rough estimation, I'd just guess at it, I don't need equipment or software for that.

JI >> Oh?? So you think that looking at it this way is totally useless?? If something changes, I'll know pretty quickly. Between my o'scope and PC spectrum analyzer, I'll get an indication that something is up and I'll be able to see it.

>Especially when some of the guys on "your side" are using the "fish-finder" scopes on their rigs as a reference (in reality, what's the difference??). I certainly wouldn't use it to make accurate measurements of IMD, but it will still show you generally what's happening. Is it perfectly accurate? Of course not -- but I will get a clear picture of what's going on directly around my envelope especially if I have a FLAT 8 or 12k RX), and I would be able to see when something's going wrong. That is all I need to know once I've proven my equipment with a real piece of test equipment. I would argue that even an Amateur with a spectrum analyzer wouldn't be much more reliable because I doubt he keeps it calibrated at the suggested interval. Most are probably years out of cal, some decades.<

WB2WIK replies:

That may be entirely true. I don't use a rig with an internal "spectrum display," but I have used them from time to time, going all the way back to the original rig with this feature, the Icom IC-780. Cute, and surely useful to operations, and certainly more indicative than "Hamalyzer" or anything that only works with demodulation.

JI >> Why? What is it that you can see with those that I couldn't detect on my own signal using the audio spec any (knowing how to look at it)?

>That said, I fortunately have access to calibrated test equipment in a full-blown RF lab. When I get my tests run, I know I'll be very close to any other lab's results.<

WB2WIK replies:

So do I. To effectively use this stuff requires not only the equipment but experience and training in its use, and often requires the use of very high-Q RF notch filters to filter out the primary signal and focus on everything else. To use it with a randomly modulated voice (SSB) off-the-air signal is quite a trick. The "issue" I have with ESSB proponents, who I did not declare as all nincompoops (I said "many," not most or all), is that many -- possibly most -- really have no idea what they're doing and are going by on-the-air reports provided by others who know about as much; or, they're using the demodulated signal provided by the MONITOR function of their transceiver; or, they're using the demodulated signal provided by a secondary receiver, simply to hone the shape of their modulated signal, without regard for the total effect or result of doing so. In many cases, the users are boosting low frequency modulation (< 300 Hz) to the great detriment of their signal and other spectrum users nearby.

JI >> What great detriment? Be specific, please. To be honest, I get "close" with my monitor, then fine tune with off the air reports/spectral plots (RF *AND* audio). I know I'm not splattering (from the rig), and I'm not overdriving my amplifier. What am I doing so detrimental? Different monitors have different levels of performance. Some rigs are only audio monitors (pretty useless), but others use the second receiver to monitor at the IF level (much more effective). I've been using spectrum analyzers and many other "real" pieces of test equipment for almost 20 years (I was formally trained on test equipment in the military). I'm pretty confident I can use them properly.

>You're a pretty smart guy, Steve -- I expect better than "All ESSB'ers are nincompoops" from you.<

WB2WIK replies:

I didn't say that. I did say, "many," and I'll stick with that.

JI >> Touche. "Many" still doesn't cut it though, from my experience. Why did QST have to run an article on how to use IF shift (I'm not taking a poke at new operators here -- it's the guys that have been around for years I question)? It wasn't for my sake!! I'm quite sure that if I ask anyone in my next ESSB QSO, they will know how it works. So will most contesters/DX'ers. Most also know about IMD or how not to overlap into someone else's passband, but I'm not so sure about DX'ers/contesters in this regard. I know most of us know how to select a wide enough portion of the band that is *NOT* in use and not QRM someone else, I *AM* sure of contesters/DX'ers in this case!! I think most of us know our rigs strengths and their limitations which is hopefully true of contesters/DX'ers as well (but if it is, they push it past the limit on purpose).

JI >> To me, all this still boils down to simple consideration. If we all (and I know there are bad apples in every orchard) would simply use the VFO when we don't care for how someone *SOUNDS* or the topic being discussed, most of the problems will go away. The second consideration issue (probably bigger than the first) is this frequency ownership crap. If a freq is in use OM, it's in use. You (generically) don't get to decide to TX 3k away from a 6k signal just because you're 3k away, or 1.5k away on the frequency you "have been on for 10 years" for the same reason. This is what kills me: folks are so dead-set against ESSB, yet it takes up less space than the usual AM counterpart. That is what confounds me the most. I know some are against AM as well (at least they're consistent), but most are not. Where is the logic in that?

JI >> ESSB is growing, and like when SSB first came out, all kinds of resistance was posed. Let's get past this and move forward. Repeating myself, there is *NOTHING* technically or morally wrong with a clean 4 or 6k SSB signal, when the band conditions allow for it. Do you dispute that without any "buts"?

73!

Steve WB2WIK/6

73 to you!!
Joe, N3JI/5 (but currently /9 :-) )
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
WA0LYK Said:
N3JI,
WB2WIK,

I think you guys just illustrated why the FCC is going to want a well defined, technically rigorous, repeatable test if we go to a bandwidth regulated plan!

You also triggered a point for me. We will need both a lab test, i.e., two-tone test to evaluate transmitters and an on-the-air test to evaluate how that transmitter is actually being operated!

The Canadain plan looks better and better!

Jim
WA0LYK

N3JI >> The problem is a rule like that directly interferes with 3 of the 5 purposes of Amateur Radio given in Part 97 (b, c, & d).

I don't believe there is a way to verbalize BW limits other than what we have now that will allow total flexibility. The fact is that rigs will have to go through all this extra testing & design will increase the prices, and not gain us a whole lot. What about HB rigs? Who is going to enforce violations (with enough evidence to be indisputable) and settle complaints? There is just too much wrong with limits, unless they're used as "guidelines". Is it really worth tax-payer's money to enforce these rules on me because I'm using 6.2kHz @ -26dB? Or 6.4? How do we come up with something that's really fair and not un-enforcable?

Maybe a US slant on Canada's plan is what we need (FCC-wise): "Here's your frequency limits, you all use them as you see fit". Like 160m. I don't see "chaos" (to use someone else's term) on that band.

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
As I read the Canadian plan, if you have anything over -26 db at wider that 6 kHz you are exceeding the bandwidth. Doesn't matter if it is fundamental audio or IM products. This appears to be an on-the-air measurement. Granted it has the same problems as any bandwidth plan, primarily it is a new regulation that introduces new problems for enforcement. That is one reason I am against bandwidth plans.

Another problem I thought of reading this is when you send your rig to a tech for repair. Not only does the FCC need a good measurment definition, but so do techs if they are to certify the rig meets FCC regulations! And, if a tech can't (or won't) certify that it will meet requirements, who is supposed to certify it! Or do we all just operate hoping we are meeting the regs? (God, this gets closer and closer to type accepted rigs using wired mics and no accessories!)

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA1RNE on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

Tim;

>> "What makes it obsolete? The only legitimate problem that I have seen raised yet is that there is a problem doing mixed voice, text, graphics on a single frequency today."

-- In my opinion, the current 50 year old arrangement is obsolete if you consider how much more operating flexibility could be gained by allowing all mode operation throughout each band.

There are hams who want - and should be able to operate at wider than 3 Khz bandwidths, be it digital or ESSB or AM.

If we opened our bands and didn't create CW/Phone segments, it would be much easier to accomodate everyone. At any given time, there is LOTS of unused spectrum in the CW and Phone portions of 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10 meters. For example, I can't count how many times I have listened between 3.560 and 3.750 or 3.950 to 4.00 mc and on average observed inconsistent or no activity. Same goes for 14.100 to 14.150, 21.1 to 21.225, etc., etc.

Personally, I don't see what the big deal is about implementing a plan similar to Canada's. Today, I can set up a split QSO on 40 meter SSB and tie up 3-4 khz on one frequency and 3-4 khz on another - maybe even listening in the CW band - which takes up the equivalent of 6-8 Khz of band space, so what's the difference???!!!

This is obviously counteractive to the ARRL proposal, but hey, the ARRL isn't always right and neither am I.

All I'm saying is, I don't buy this tight bandwidth nonsense and they know they can't enforce it. As long as the operator allows adequate distance from band edges depending upon the mode being used, there should be no problem. As well, if your running ESSB in a hot spot of the band during the ARRL Sweepstakes, be prepared to tone it down, find an unocuppied section of band or go back to normal bandwidth.

At the same time, opening the bands up will promote activity, which is never a bad thing.

73, Chris



 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Chris,
Your post makes the most sense I've seen on this subject(s) in a very long time!! VERY well put.

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
wa1rne:
"-- In my opinion, the current 50 year old arrangement is obsolete if you consider how much more operating flexibility could be gained by allowing all mode operation throughout each band."
............

"If we opened our bands and didn't create CW/Phone segments, it would be much easier to accomodate everyone."

"Personally, I don't see what the big deal is about implementing a plan similar to Canada's."

The biggest problem is that you could just about fit all the Canadian hams on 80m all at once and probably not get any interference complaints lodged with the controlling authority (sorry, I don't remember the title right now).

The US has a much higher density of hams and a much more "litigious" society. Open the bands in the manner which you state and the FCC would be swamped with complaints. Some would be legitimate and some would not. Some would be for harrassment and some would be sincere.

With a wide-open band as you recommend, just how would you suggest the FCC resolve such interference complaints? If they abdicate their responsibility for control of the spectrum, as they have done on 11meters, you can rest assured many of the matters will wind up in court and the FCC will be directed by the courts to come up with a method for resolving those disputes.

You probably won't like those methods.

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Tim,
160m is all modes, everywhere. We have managed to stay out of each others' way, and "chaos" has not taken place. During 160m CW contests, CW is very thick at the bottom, working its way up. During 160m SSB contests, SSB starts out at the top and works its way down. Sure, there aren't as many folks on 160m that are on 20m, but it's also only 200k wide. Why not have a dynamic band that supports all different types of demands as activities occur? Heck, it might even allow the guys that normally ragchew have a little more elbow room during contest weekends and vise-versa. I think it would SOLVE more problems that it would cause. Yes, I think it's time we look little harder at this. The reason our bands won't turn into 11m is *US*. We have been self-policing forever, and I don't see it failing if we open things up.

Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal Reply
by N3JI on May 10, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>N3JI >> First of all, a spectum analyzer *IS* a radio receiver that demodulates and displays the information on a graphic display. Yes, the good ones have very good "receivers" in front of them, and are variable in terms of BW (as in instantaneous BW, display BW, and video BW).<

WB2WIK replies:

That's not true at all. The spectrum analyzer doesn't demodulate anything, it provides a videographic representation of the actual received signal, *not* a demodulated one. The problem with Hamalyzer or any such display is that it's only showing what is demodulated. What if you use an SSB receiver to tune in a DSB signal? The demodulated signal only represents one of the two sidebands; the other sideband, which is not demodulated, could be 99% distortion, and 1 MHz wide, and you'd never see it.

JI >> Demodulated was the wrong term. "Downconverted" was my intention. Looking at the demodulated audio will let you see when something's going wrong. And that's about all I would use it for. It will absolutely show you SSB BW (including any strange products outside of that) pretty closely, as long as you're using an RX filter that's wide enough. Will it show opposite SSB or carrier suppression? YES!! IF you swap sidebands or tune a little off freq. But, you have to know your receiver's capabilities and what you're seeing.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I disagree. First, you (in the general sense) don't know your receiver that well. "Opening it up" to 8 or 12 kHz BW is silly and a huge step backwards technologically. It degrades S/N, and while it might sound better to you, doing this sure doesn't sound better to me -- or to many people -- ever. Hamalyzer will *never* indicate undesired energy that cannot be demodulated, at all. Switching to the "opposite sideband" with your receiver mode function switch won't do it, either, because you won't demodulate the interference, even though there may be plenty of it. I did buy the licensed copy of Hamalyzer, paid my $30, and used it with numerous receivers, a high end sound card and my PC. It's completely useless if you want to use it as a "spectrum analyzer," with any sort of communications receiver, because no matter what you do, it only works with demodulated audio and doesn't indicate anything that isn't demodulated.


>As long as you know what your rig's receiver is and isn't showing you, there isn't anything wrong with using that method for determining *ROUGH* BW.<

WB2WIK replies:

Sure there is. If I wanted a rough estimation, I'd just guess at it, I don't need equipment or software for that.

JI >> Oh?? So you think that looking at it this way is totally useless?? If something changes, I'll know pretty quickly. Between my o'scope and PC spectrum analyzer, I'll get an indication that something is up and I'll be able to see it.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

What should change or go wrong, that you'd want to see it quickly? If not for people fooling around with their modulation channel in ways they probably shouldn't be, nothing would change or go wrong. I don't have to monitor my modulation continuously or otherwise to know what it's doing -- I set it up once, years ago, and everything has held its adjustment just fine.


>Especially when some of the guys on "your side" are using the "fish-finder" scopes on their rigs as a reference (in reality, what's the difference??). I certainly wouldn't use it to make accurate measurements of IMD, but it will still show you generally what's happening. Is it perfectly accurate? Of course not -- but I will get a clear picture of what's going on directly around my envelope especially if I have a FLAT 8 or 12k RX), and I would be able to see when something's going wrong. That is all I need to know once I've proven my equipment with a real piece of test equipment. I would argue that even an Amateur with a spectrum analyzer wouldn't be much more reliable because I doubt he keeps it calibrated at the suggested interval. Most are probably years out of cal, some decades.<

WB2WIK replies:

That may be entirely true. I don't use a rig with an internal "spectrum display," but I have used them from time to time, going all the way back to the original rig with this feature, the Icom IC-780. Cute, and surely useful to operations, and certainly more indicative than "Hamalyzer" or anything that only works with demodulation.

JI >> Why? What is it that you can see with those that I couldn't detect on my own signal using the audio spec any (knowing how to look at it)?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Anything that the receiver cannot demodulate. For example, you could be producing tons of distortion that's so far outside the passband of your receiver it cannot possibly be demodulated, and Hamalyzer won't show anything about that. You could be (and *many* ESSB'ers are) producing a signal on the opposite side of carrier which cannot be demodulated. Switching to the opposite sideband with your receiver won't demodulate it -- doesn't mean it's not there. This is one thing I see a lot of, when I bring an "ESSB-setup" transmitter into the lab, transmit into a dummy load through a directional coupler and look at the actual TX signal (not one received, demodulated and then observed) under voice modulation conditions, using digital capture so the overlays can be observed later. Simply rolling off the low-frequency emphasis completely eliminates the problem. Turning it back on repeats the problem. It's very observable on lab equipment looking at the actual RF spectrum in frequency domain.

>That said, I fortunately have access to calibrated test equipment in a full-blown RF lab. When I get my tests run, I know I'll be very close to any other lab's results.<

WB2WIK replies:

So do I. To effectively use this stuff requires not only the equipment but experience and training in its use, and often requires the use of very high-Q RF notch filters to filter out the primary signal and focus on everything else. To use it with a randomly modulated voice (SSB) off-the-air signal is quite a trick. The "issue" I have with ESSB proponents, who I did not declare as all nincompoops (I said "many," not most or all), is that many -- possibly most -- really have no idea what they're doing and are going by on-the-air reports provided by others who know about as much; or, they're using the demodulated signal provided by the MONITOR function of their transceiver; or, they're using the demodulated signal provided by a secondary receiver, simply to hone the shape of their modulated signal, without regard for the total effect or result of doing so. In many cases, the users are boosting low frequency modulation (< 300 Hz) to the great detriment of their signal and other spectrum users nearby.

JI >> What great detriment? Be specific, please.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I think I just was specific, see above. The problems I see are almost all caused by low frequency emphasis, not high frequency emphasis, which is really funny since it is high frequency emphasis that would actually improve readability and sibilance and make people sound good. I have no idea why people would want to boost response below 300 Hz, but they do, and that's the problem.




>To be honest, I get "close" with my monitor, then fine tune with off the air reports/spectral plots (RF *AND* audio). I know I'm not splattering (from the rig), and I'm not overdriving my amplifier. What am I doing so detrimental?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Maybe "nothing," you might be doing everything perfectly. I don't know, since I don't think I've ever heard you, or even if I did, I wouldn't trust any receiver I own, with a sound card interface and Hamalyzer, to tell me anything about what you're doing. I need the transmitter in the lab. Most of the problems I observe with ESSB is low-end emphasis stuff, which indeed creates "splatter," if you define splatter as unwanted modulation byproducts/artifacts falling outside the desired signal spectrum. This has nothing to do with overdriving stuff. Most of the guys I see doing this have perfectly fine signals the moment they unplug the EQ and plug their mikes back into their transmitters directly, at the same power level and other adjustment.



>Different monitors have different levels of performance. Some rigs are only audio monitors (pretty useless), but others use the second receiver to monitor at the IF level (much more effective). I've been using spectrum analyzers and many other "real" pieces of test equipment for almost 20 years (I was formally trained on test equipment in the military). I'm pretty confident I can use them properly.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I hope so, Jim! But tell me, what equipment do you use (RF spectrum analyzer), at what settings, typically?

>You're a pretty smart guy, Steve -- I expect better than "All ESSB'ers are nincompoops" from you.<

WB2WIK replies:

I didn't say that. I did say, "many," and I'll stick with that.

>JI >> Touche. "Many" still doesn't cut it though, from my experience. Why did QST have to run an article on how to use IF shift (I'm not taking a poke at new operators here -- it's the guys that have been around for years I question)?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Maybe because they've run out of stuff to print? I read that article, and frankly, it wasn't very well done. But then, there's no question that many operators could benefit from some instructions, and the "user manuals" that come with most of the ham gear aren't adequate. Most of them are so poorly written that I, an engineer and ham for 40 years, get tired reading the drivel and tend to put the manual away and never refer to it again. They could all use some tech writers.

>It wasn't for my sake!! I'm quite sure that if I ask anyone in my next ESSB QSO, they will know how it works. So will most contesters/DX'ers. Most also know about IMD or how not to overlap into someone else's passband, but I'm not so sure about DX'ers/contesters in this regard. I know most of us know how to select a wide enough portion of the band that is *NOT* in use and not QRM someone else, I *AM* sure of contesters/DX'ers in this case!! I think most of us know our rigs strengths and their limitations which is hopefully true of contesters/DX'ers as well (but if it is, they push it past the limit on purpose).<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I'm a contester, myself, and think most serious contesters are very good operators -- typically, the cream of the crop. However, many do suffer "too much mike gain," especially for the noisy operating conditions at multiop stations. Contest or not, you shouldn't be able to hear background noise, and SSB signals shouldn't have on 6dB peak-to-background-crap ratio, which is a problem on the bands during phone contests. You have to admit you've heard this. I've heard a LOT of it. But that has nothing to do with ESSB. Frankly, the stations with all the background noise would do well to use a Noise Gate, or at least crank the gain down and close talk the mike to build the peak-to-junk ratio back up to 40-50 dB, like it should be.

JI >> To me, all this still boils down to simple consideration. If we all (and I know there are bad apples in every orchard) would simply use the VFO when we don't care for how someone *SOUNDS* or the topic being discussed, most of the problems will go away. The second consideration issue (probably bigger than the first) is this frequency ownership crap. If a freq is in use OM, it's in use. You (generically) don't get to decide to TX 3k away from a 6k signal just because you're 3k away, or 1.5k away on the frequency you "have been on for 10 years" for the same reason. This is what kills me: folks are so dead-set against ESSB, yet it takes up less space than the usual AM counterpart. That is what confounds me the most. I know some are against AM as well (at least they're consistent), but most are not. Where is the logic in that?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I'm not anti-ESSB, at all. Most folks I know are not. I'm only anti people taking up extra bandwidth needlessly, experimentally or not, because there just isn't any purpose in it, and nobody ever knows who they might be interfering with; so, it's the polite thing to do, to sound good and occupy as little bandwidth as possible doing so. I don't care if somebody wants to add high-end emphasis to increase readability; the low-end stuff is what's troublesome. This is because most transmitters weren't designed to be modulated much below 300 Hz or so (rolloff always begins there by design), and lower frequency modulation uses a lot of power without enhancing readability an iota. High frequency emphasis enhances readability a lot, without using much additional power. Not that I'm concerned about anyone's electric bill: When I say, "uses power," I'm concerned about the transmitted power-BW product, which is greatly elevated when using low-frequency EQ. If you transmit in a BW of 300 to 3300 Hz, that's pretty high-fidelity and still only 3 kHz BW. Drop the 300 Hz down to 0 Hz, and now you're 3.3 kHz BW without enhancing a darned thing. All it does is occupy more space, without serving any function.

JI >> ESSB is growing, and like when SSB first came out, all kinds of resistance was posed. Let's get past this and move forward. Repeating myself, there is *NOTHING* technically or morally wrong with a clean 4 or 6k SSB signal, when the band conditions allow for it. Do you dispute that without any "buts"?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Of course I dispute it. Again, it's impossible for anyone to know if they're creating interference or not, so by gentleman's agreement the prudent thing to do is occupy the minimum BW for a good sounding signal that will allow high quality communications. That can easily be achieved in a 3 kHz (@ -26dB points) BW. Who in the world could possible dispute *that*? It's indisputable, since it's the BW that amateurs have been using for SSB transmission for 45 years. Every old piece of SSB gear I own, including some really old stuff, all meets the 3 kHz/-26 dB standard without modification, as do the best-sounding signals on the air today.

73!

Steve WB2WIK/6

73 to you!!
Joe, N3JI/5 (but currently /9 :-) )
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
n3ji:
"160m is all modes, everywhere. We have managed to stay out of each others' way, and "chaos" has not taken place."

I think this probably is a reason FOR spectrum usage studies, interference studies, spectrum efficiency studies to be required before making any decisions about how to move into the future.

Frankly, at least in this part of the country, 160m does NOT have a huge number of users. Antenna requirements are too severe for the average urban and suburban ham to get on the band. "staying out of each others' way " is not very difficult. Certainly not compared to 75m and 20m phone.

n3ji:
"During 160m CW contests, CW is very thick at the bottom, working its way up. During 160m SSB contests, SSB starts out at the top and works its way down. Sure, there aren't as many folks on 160m that are on 20m, but it's also only 200k wide."

I have sincere doubts that the same thing would work on 40m and 20m; especially during contests. 80m and the other HF bands might not turn into border wars but I'll bet 40m and 20m will. There are lots of evenings I can't find an open spot on either of these bands for a CW qso let alone a phone one.

" Why not have a dynamic band that supports all different types of demands as activities occur?"

Because people in the US don't play well together any more.

" Heck, it might even allow the guys that normally ragchew have a little more elbow room during contest weekends and vise-versa. I think it would SOLVE more problems that it would cause."

I don't. I think it would cause enforcement nightmares for the FCC because of all the interference complaints they would receive but would have no firm guidelines to resolve.

" Yes, I think it's time we look little harder at this. The reason our bands won't turn into 11m is *US*. We have been self-policing forever, and I don't see it failing if we open things up. "

Apparently you don't operate much psk31 or rtty. If you are not aware of the interference wars already going on in the bands, there have been a number of discussions on this board you could find in the archives.

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
AB0WR Said:
n3ji:
"160m is all modes, everywhere. We have managed to stay out of each others' way, and "chaos" has not taken place."

I think this probably is a reason FOR spectrum usage studies, interference studies, spectrum efficiency studies to be required before making any decisions about how to move into the future.

Frankly, at least in this part of the country, 160m does NOT have a huge number of users. Antenna requirements are too severe for the average urban and suburban ham to get on the band. "staying out of each others' way " is not very difficult. Certainly not compared to 75m and 20m phone.

N3JI >> Notice I specifically mentioned contests, and it is much more heavily used at that time than others, and remember that it is slightly smaller than half the size of 75m, and slightly larger than half the size of 40 & 20. One point that supports you is that a lot of folks have antennas cut for one part of 160m and they typically stay in that area. 75m will be similar, but 40 & above won't be.

n3ji:
"During 160m CW contests, CW is very thick at the bottom, working its way up. During 160m SSB contests, SSB starts out at the top and works its way down. Sure, there aren't as many folks on 160m that are on 20m, but it's also only 200k wide."

I have sincere doubts that the same thing would work on 40m and 20m; especially during contests. 80m and the other HF bands might not turn into border wars but I'll bet 40m and 20m will. There are lots of evenings I can't find an open spot on either of these bands for a CW qso let alone a phone one.

N3JI >> I've seen lots of unused space on all bands even during the most crowded of times. That's the problem I have with this. I know there are times when there probably isn't any open space, but I find that hard to believe. 14.100 to 14.150 is one place that is a wasteland -- 40m is a bad example because of all the BC QRM. Band plans won't change that unless it includes moving all the international BC stations up the band.

" Why not have a dynamic band that supports all different types of demands as activities occur?"

Because people in the US don't play well together any more.

N3JI >> I don't have anything to say about that except that there are already rules in place to take care of that, and having more breathing room will help.

" Heck, it might even allow the guys that normally ragchew have a little more elbow room during contest weekends and vise-versa. I think it would SOLVE more problems that it would cause."

I don't. I think it would cause enforcement nightmares for the FCC because of all the interference complaints they would receive but would have no firm guidelines to resolve.

N3JI >> Isn't it already that way? What happens on 75m when somebody fires up a QSO 2k away from you because they've been there for 20 years? What will make that any worse?

" Yes, I think it's time we look little harder at this. The reason our bands won't turn into 11m is *US*. We have been self-policing forever, and I don't see it failing if we open things up. "

Apparently you don't operate much psk31 or rtty. If you are not aware of the interference wars already going on in the bands, there have been a number of discussions on this board you could find in the archives.

N3JI >> Yes, I've seen it. I can't understand why one of you can simply move 1 kc up or down. If there are a dozen PSK QSOs on 14.070, why does a RTTY signal plop right in there? By the same token, if there is a RTTY signal there, why can you work at 14.069? I still have no clue what everyone is afraid of. Nobody owns a frequency, and moving 1 or 2 kc's isn't asking much. Actually, it's nothing. Why is it "something"??

73,
Joe, N3JI

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
JI >> Demodulated was the wrong term. "Downconverted" was my intention. Looking at the demodulated audio will let you see when something's going wrong. And that's about all I would use it for. It will absolutely show you SSB BW (including any strange products outside of that) pretty closely, as long as you're using an RX filter that's wide enough. Will it show opposite SSB or carrier suppression? YES!! IF you swap sidebands or tune a little off freq. But, you have to know your receiver's capabilities and what you're seeing.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I disagree. First, you (in the general sense) don't know your receiver that well. "Opening it up" to 8 or 12 kHz BW is silly and a huge step backwards technologically. It degrades S/N, and while it might sound better to you, doing this sure doesn't sound better to me -- or to many people -- ever. Hamalyzer will *never* indicate undesired energy that cannot be demodulated, at all. Switching to the "opposite sideband" with your receiver mode function switch won't do it, either, because you won't demodulate the interference, even though there may be plenty of it. I did buy the licensed copy of Hamalyzer, paid my $30, and used it with numerous receivers, a high end sound card and my PC. It's completely useless if you want to use it as a "spectrum analyzer," with any sort of communications receiver, because no matter what you do, it only works with demodulated audio and doesn't indicate anything that isn't demodulated.

N3JI >> I don't know what to tell you, Steve. My rig is "flat" from ~30 Hz to ~8kHz. I have used it like that and if I am in SSB, I can see noise spikes, all different types of noise floor changes, carriers, etc. All I have to do to see 1 MHz away is turn my receiver's VFO. I hope you understand that I'm talking about a totally separate receiver. If my transmitter is creating products 20k away, I can tune it up the band and simply look. Kind of like using a 10k of resoulution on your spectrum anylyzer's display and tuning the center freq up the band, isn't it? As far as S/N, change the resolution BW on your spectrum analyzer and watch the noise floor. It goes up and down, doesn't it? I'm confident that if you can generate some kind of signal, I'll be able to see it with my receiver -- to see a carrier on SSB, all I have to do is slide off frequency a little. Let me ask this a different way: Describe something you can generate that I wouldn't be able to see. I *CAN* see opposite sideband and carrier suppression problems, noise spikes coming from 20k down the band from the guy overdriving his amp, AM carriers, PSK & RTTY emmissions, etc.
--------------------------------

JI >> Oh?? So you think that looking at it this way is totally useless?? If something changes, I'll know pretty quickly. Between my o'scope and PC spectrum analyzer, I'll get an indication that something is up and I'll be able to see it.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

What should change or go wrong, that you'd want to see it quickly? If not for people fooling around with their modulation channel in ways they probably shouldn't be, nothing would change or go wrong. I don't have to monitor my modulation continuously or otherwise to know what it's doing -- I set it up once, years ago, and everything has held its adjustment just fine.

N3JI >> Right. You probably wouldn't. If you never replace your microphone, change any setting in your rig, add or subtract equipment, or operate at mostly the same place in the band all the time, you probably don't. I use a couple different rigs at different times, I change frequencies requiring amplifier tuning changes, and move all over the bands using different modes and different audio characteristics. When I'm ragchewing in SSB vs. AM, operating a contest, or chasing DX, I use different types of audio responses. I'm sure you think that no matter what you're doing under different types of band conditions, the audio from your five or ten dollar mic will do. I don't believe that, and there is a reason why Bob Heil makes full range mics, communications quality mics, and DX/contest type mics. And I doubt you will argue that each is very effective for its intended use. I can emulate all of those and anything in between for less than the price of three or four of his mics.
----------------------------------

JI >> Why? What is it that you can see with those that I couldn't detect on my own signal using the audio spec any (knowing how to look at it)?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Anything that the receiver cannot demodulate. For example, you could be producing tons of distortion that's so far outside the passband of your receiver it cannot possibly be demodulated, and Hamalyzer won't show anything about that. You could be (and *many* ESSB'ers are) producing a signal on the opposite side of carrier which cannot be demodulated. Switching to the opposite sideband with your receiver won't demodulate it -- doesn't mean it's not there. This is one thing I see a lot of, when I bring an "ESSB-setup" transmitter into the lab, transmit into a dummy load through a directional coupler and look at the actual TX signal (not one received, demodulated and then observed) under voice modulation conditions, using digital capture so the overlays can be observed later. Simply rolling off the low-frequency emphasis completely eliminates the problem. Turning it back on repeats the problem. It's very observable on lab equipment looking at the actual RF spectrum in frequency domain.

N3JI >> That's just simply not true. I have heard and seen using the previously mentioned method, opposite sideband/carrier suppression problems. My rig uses DSP generated IF, so you can't look a filter type rig and decide all of us are polluting the bands. I know you have a point with filter rigs, and I know a lot of folks have pushed it. That's part of the experimentation. The FT-1000 is *SUPPOSEDLY* very clean with 6k Inrad filters. I haven't measured one myself, so I only know what others have told me (and I trust their level of expertise). I immediately took a filter rig off the air once I saw what it was doing on the opposite sideband with my other receiver.
----------------------------------

JI >> What great detriment? Be specific, please.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I think I just was specific, see above. The problems I see are almost all caused by low frequency emphasis, not high frequency emphasis, which is really funny since it is high frequency emphasis that would actually improve readability and sibilance and make people sound good. I have no idea why people would want to boost response below 300 Hz, but they do, and that's the problem.

N3JI >> Maybe, but not usually. There is sufficient voice energy below 300Hz in many voices to make a very real difference in how well someone sounds, and contrary to some folks' beliefs, actually *ADDS* to the accuracy of what is said vs. what is heard at the receiving station. Please read the Polycom White Paper I linked to above for the details. My voice, for instance rolls off around 100 Hz or so and drops to nothing somewhere between 60 & 80 Hz. My goal is to use my gear and rig to faithfully reproduce my voice in its entirety, up to certain limits, depending on band conditions. And yes, I absolutely play with certain effects to get a certain sound. This is where we differ. I see nothing wrong with doing this, nor do a whole lot of others. If you ever changed your mic to get a different sound (and I'm pretty certain you have), you are doing exactly the same thing. We are doing it in different ways and probably for a different end result, but neither is "bad" or "wrong".
---------------------------------

JI>To be honest, I get "close" with my monitor, then fine tune with off the air reports/spectral plots (RF *AND* audio). I know I'm not splattering (from the rig), and I'm not overdriving my amplifier. What am I doing so detrimental?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Maybe "nothing," you might be doing everything perfectly. I don't know, since I don't think I've ever heard you, or even if I did, I wouldn't trust any receiver I own, with a sound card interface and Hamalyzer, to tell me anything about what you're doing. I need the transmitter in the lab. Most of the problems I observe with ESSB is low-end emphasis stuff, which indeed creates "splatter," if you define splatter as unwanted modulation byproducts/artifacts falling outside the desired signal spectrum. This has nothing to do with overdriving stuff. Most of the guys I see doing this have perfectly fine signals the moment they unplug the EQ and plug their mikes back into their transmitters directly, at the same power level and other adjustment.

N3JI >> Okay, so now I am confused. If you can't see or hear the difference in spurious emmisions over the air (and no, I don't mean during horribly noisy conditions) what exactly is the problem? I think you are approaching the arguement Tom-W8JI was using in that he has a problem with ESSB because it causes a slight increase in IMD. If all this is about a very small increase in IMD that you will *NEVER* see unless you sit 50 feet from the antenna or connect directly to the rig with a directional coupler, I question your logic. If fact, I think you just proved a point for me. I have *NOT* measured IMD differences yet on my rig, but I will be making several measurements, including stock mic audio, ESSB audio (at say, 3.5/4.5/6k BW), white noise, and two-tone to see exactly what the differences are. I will capture all of that on a spectrum analyzer and post the results.
-----------------------------------

>JI> Different monitors have different levels of performance. Some rigs are only audio monitors (pretty useless), but others use the second receiver to monitor at the IF level (much more effective). I've been using spectrum analyzers and many other "real" pieces of test equipment for almost 20 years (I was formally trained on test equipment in the military). I'm pretty confident I can use them properly.<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I hope so, Jim! But tell me, what equipment do you use (RF spectrum analyzer), at what settings, typically?

N3JI >> I typically use an HP8563 in our lab, but have used others. Specific settings depend what I'm doing. I use it to look at lots of different types (and widths) of digital modulation envelopes, many times at different places in the up/down conversion process. I also use several other types of HP, Agilent, IFR, Rohde & Schwarz, Anritsu, etc. depending upon the task at hand. Oh, and the name here is JOE -- juliet-oscah-echo. :-)
-----------------------------------------

WB2WIK replies (new):

I'm a contester, myself, and think most serious contesters are very good operators -- typically, the cream of the crop. However, many do suffer "too much mike gain," especially for the noisy operating conditions at multiop stations. Contest or not, you shouldn't be able to hear background noise, and SSB signals shouldn't have on 6dB peak-to-background-crap ratio, which is a problem on the bands during phone contests. You have to admit you've heard this. I've heard a LOT of it. But that has nothing to do with ESSB. Frankly, the stations with all the background noise would do well to use a Noise Gate, or at least crank the gain down and close talk the mike to build the peak-to-junk ratio back up to 40-50 dB, like it should be.

N3JI >> Yeah, it grates on my nerves, too. I use a downward expander instead of a noise gate simply because I don't like the chopped up sound I get with them. If I was in multi-op contest, I might have to use it, but I avoid gates unless absolutely necessary.
----------------------------------------

JI >> To me, all this still boils down to simple consideration. If we all (and I know there are bad apples in every orchard) would simply use the VFO when we don't care for how someone *SOUNDS* or the topic being discussed, most of the problems will go away. The second consideration issue (probably bigger than the first) is this frequency ownership crap. If a freq is in use OM, it's in use. You (generically) don't get to decide to TX 3k away from a 6k signal just because you're 3k away, or 1.5k away on the frequency you "have been on for 10 years" for the same reason. This is what kills me: folks are so dead-set against ESSB, yet it takes up less space than the usual AM counterpart. That is what confounds me the most. I know some are against AM as well (at least they're consistent), but most are not. Where is the logic in that?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

I'm not anti-ESSB, at all. Most folks I know are not. I'm only anti people taking up extra bandwidth needlessly, experimentally or not, because there just isn't any purpose in it, and nobody ever knows who they might be interfering with; so, it's the polite thing to do, to sound good and occupy as little bandwidth as possible doing so. I don't care if somebody wants to add high-end emphasis to increase readability; the low-end stuff is what's troublesome. This is because most transmitters weren't designed to be modulated much below 300 Hz or so (rolloff always begins there by design), and lower frequency modulation uses a lot of power without enhancing readability an iota. High frequency emphasis enhances readability a lot, without using much additional power. Not that I'm concerned about anyone's electric bill: When I say, "uses power," I'm concerned about the transmitted power-BW product, which is greatly elevated when using low-frequency EQ. If you transmit in a BW of 300 to 3300 Hz, that's pretty high-fidelity and still only 3 kHz BW. Drop the 300 Hz down to 0 Hz, and now you're 3.3 kHz BW without enhancing a darned thing. All it does is occupy more space, without serving any function.

N3JI >> You are 100% correct about the high end adding clarity, but the fact is that clean, nearly 100% unambiguous speech needs 6-7k. One thing that you certainly picked up on is that very little energy is present above 3k or so. It is very critical for better understandability and ease of listening, though. The part about the low end really isn't true, Steve. It *DOES* add to readability, but in some ways, not directly. Again, read the Polycom White Paper. The low end content eases listening fatigue by adding realism to the voice making it overall easier for the brain to process. As far as necessity, what is truly necessary on the Amateur Bands, Steve (besides emergency communications)? Using "necessary" as the criteria, contesting is about the most useless waste of spectrum out of all of this (and I, too operate contests)! DX'ing DXCC/WAS/WAZ/etc. records prove that communications are possible to many obscure parts of the world under different conditions, so you can't even claim that!! Granted, some of these places are rarely on the air except during the CQWW, but that really doesn't mean a whole lot. You have to admit "You're 59-NTX, QRZ??" is a pretty wasteful use of spectrum. To further drive the point home, we put together a presentation for some city officials to get their approval for Field Day on their property, and one of us let "contest" slip out. They had several questions about what a "contest" had to do with the stress we put on emergency communication exercise. It took some fast talking to clear it up. The point is that you can't claim that narrow band SSB is somehow more important than ESSB. It's all pretty low on the priority list. And let me add one more point: If *MY* life depended on a message getting from point A to B, I'd want it done in the quickest most efficient way possible, and 400-2.4k causes the communicators to constantly have to use phonetics, but if they would use 100-6k (band conditions permitting) none, or very few would be necessary. Bad band conditions are bad band conditions and very little can be done to avoid phonetics in that case. Use CW. How often had you had to use phonetics face-to-face? I rest my case.
------------------------------------

JI >> ESSB is growing, and like when SSB first came out, all kinds of resistance was posed. Let's get past this and move forward. Repeating myself, there is *NOTHING* technically or morally wrong with a clean 4 or 6k SSB signal, when the band conditions allow for it. Do you dispute that without any "buts"?<

WB2WIK replies (new):

Of course I dispute it. Again, it's impossible for anyone to know if they're creating interference or not, so by gentleman's agreement the prudent thing to do is occupy the minimum BW for a good sounding signal that will allow high quality communications. That can easily be achieved in a 3 kHz (@ -26dB points) BW. Who in the world could possible dispute *that*? It's indisputable, since it's the BW that amateurs have been using for SSB transmission for 45 years. Every old piece of SSB gear I own, including some really old stuff, all meets the 3 kHz/-26 dB standard without modification, as do the best-sounding signals on the air today.

N3JI >> I can dispute it using the argument above. Why do we need phonetics? The truth is you very rarely would with enough BW (very often, if at all). I agree about not knowing 100% if you are causing interference to another user. But again, if you can't see it with a spectrum analyzer off the air, then you (or your radio) can't hear it either and it isn't an issue!! See, if the most effective use of spectrum was the only criteria for allowing us on the air, get rid of AM, SSB, RTTY, and SSTV. We really only *NEED* to be using CW or PSK31. So once again it comes to "that's the way we've been doing it for 45 years". And once again, I say that is the poorest reason that can ever be put forth.

73!

Steve WB2WIK/6

73 to you!!
Joe, N3JI/5 (but <<STILL>> currently /9 :-) )
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Joe (N3JI), speaking of bandwidth, we're both taking up much too much of it here, by now.

You sound like a nice guy and we should chat on the air. I operate CW a lot, but phone works too, and I'd be happy to toss it back and forth with you on 40-20-17 meters (pick one, depending on the time of day and powers beyond our control). For me, 17m usually works until maybe 0130UTC or so and then 20m lasts a bit longer, and after dark, 40m works well -- lately. But ya never know. Propagation Monday evening was great, and Tuesday evening, 24 hours later, was stinko. Maybe it will be better today, I'll know in 40 mins when I get home!

In any case, I'd enjoy chatting with you on SSB and let some stations break in and judge whose audio sounds better.

[BTW, I *don't* experiment with microphones, or switch them for various results. Never was intrigued by that. I don't use phonetics, and never seem to need any. People understand what I say without repeats. And Bob Heil is a friend of mine! One who is about to become a neighbor, since he bought a home here in L.A. last year...]

73 & hope to sked you for an HF QSO soon!

Steve, WB2WIK/6
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AC0LT on May 11, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Amazing! Simply amazing. And I'm driving a Honda Civic, so why should anybody need anything bigger than a Honda Civic. Ban all SUVs and cars with more than 200HP! In fact, you must honor tradition - look at the Amish; use a horse and carriage!
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
N3JI >> "I've seen lots of unused space on all bands even during the most crowded of times. That's the problem I have with this. I know there are times when there probably isn't any open space, but I find that hard to believe. 14.100 to 14.150 is one place that is a wasteland -- 40m is a bad example because of all the BC QRM. Band plans won't change that unless it includes moving all the international BC stations up the band."

I guess things are different here in the Central US where we hear stations throughout the US. There are lots of nights it is hard to find a spot in the 40m and 20m CW band to call CQ.

N3JI >> "I don't have anything to say about that except that there are already rules in place to take care of that, and having more breathing room will help."

Providing the ability for wide-band, ARQ type digital signals (especially PACTOR robots)to intermix with analog phone signals is a recipe for MORE interference complaints, not fewer. While we may have rules to take care of that it will increase the number of complaints at the FCC and they have indicated that is something they DO NOT want to see.

ab0wr: "I don't. I think it would cause enforcement nightmares for the FCC because of all the interference complaints they would receive but would have no firm guidelines to resolve."

N3JI >> "Isn't it already that way? What happens on 75m when somebody fires up a QSO 2k away from you because they've been there for 20 years? What will make that any worse? "

As I said above, the mixing of wide-band, digital ARQ signals with analog phone signals will *compound* the problems. It will lead to "power" wars with high power, analog phone trying to "break" through the ARQ signals to communicate. Any plan which INCREASES the complaint load at the FCC is probably going to get short shrift there. It will just make us look stupid for proposing such a thing.


N3JI >> "Yes, I've seen it. I can't understand why one of you can simply move 1 kc up or down. If there are a dozen PSK QSOs on 14.070, why does a RTTY signal plop right in there? By the same token, if there is a RTTY signal there, why can you work at 14.069? I still have no clue what everyone is afraid of. Nobody owns a frequency, and moving 1 or 2 kc's isn't asking much. Actually, it's nothing. Why is it "something"??"

It's not just psk31 and RTTY. It is the Pactor robots, and even just straight Pactor qso's that override everything else by using ARQ to bull their way through. Part of the problem is the way many, many digital stations operate. How many leave the receiver audio output connected to their speakers to listen to the cacaphony on the frequencies? How many just hook up their modems and tnc's, mute the speaker audio, and use the modems and tnc's to tune in a wanted signal? I suspsect the vast majority mute their speaker. The modems and tnc's, espcially in the case of Pactor, just don't have the same capability as the human brain to recognize when it is going to cause interference. I just can't understand why someone would want to turn this loose in the phone bands.

Mark my words, give access to the phone bands to wide-band digital signals and there will be a number of people plop their digital signals smack dab in the middle of the most used phone frequencies today just because they can. There *will* be problems. And they will be problems that could be easily avoided. Just say no to the bandwidth proposal from the ARRL. There *are* better ways to make room for more digital spectrum and for removing content restrictions.

tim ab0wr
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The first requirement for bandwidth conservation should be learning how to quote others so when the response appears the rest of us can tell who is saying what!!

Hogging unnecessary bandwidth only means the intelligence gets lost in the noise, both in text and on the air.

I can't find a clear spot on 80, 40, or 20 most days unless the propagation is nearly dead. The same goes for 160 in the winter.

I don't buy the argument that hogging up 6kHz with baseband and then an additional 12kHz with IM3 that is only 30 to 40 dB for voise communication is advancing the state of the art or experimenting. They knew how to build wide transmitters and receivers in the early 1900's. Let's not confuse getting attention or inflating our egos with advancing the state of the art!!

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>I don't buy the argument that hogging up 6kHz with baseband and then an additional 12kHz with IM3 that is only 30 to 40 dB for voise communication is advancing the state of the art or experimenting. They knew how to build wide transmitters and receivers in the early 1900's. Let's not confuse getting attention or inflating our egos with advancing the state of the art!!<

Amen, Tom.

WB2WIK/6
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by N3JI on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Steve,
I'm glad you put it this way, as I was about to pull the plug myself. In fact, we *HAVE* talked before on 17m a couple times. I got the "you have too much low end" speech from you!! :-)

But I'd be glad to talk with you over the air again. It's kind of funny, but one of the things that I remember is that you don't attach yourself to a xx.xx5.00 or xx.xx0.00 frequency, even though someone your talking to tries to. That's one thing that has always bugged me, and it happens on nets, too!! An answering station (or net check-in) should zero to the calling station (or net control). Most don't and are usually off frequency by a sunstantial amount. Okay, I'll get away from that...

To both Steve & Tom,
I guess that the argument boils down to some level of increased IMD generated with ESSB transmissions. If I can only measure the difference by connecting directly to a rig, and no detectable difference is observed on a resonably quiet band, would you agree that this arguement is over-emphasized? My hypothesis is that the extra level IMD outside of the intended BW is below the typical noise floor on the bands. If the argument that any phone BW outside of 3k is a waste of spectrum, then AM should also be "banned". Audio BW outside of 300-3.3k definitely adds to clarity, and as an example, just last night I had to get phonetics on street names over a cell phone for directions. The connection was good, but the audio BW allowed for too many ambiguities, and my brain couldn't fill in the missing info on random street names.

The bottom line is that I think your concern over slightly higher IMD is valid, but if it can be measured to be well below the typical noise floor found on HF, then it is moot. The statements that 4 or 6k SSB in Amateur Radio is "stupid" or "wasteful" is arguably valid at any BW.

73, and I'll get off the podium now.
Joe, N3JI
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K5UJ on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
<<<can't find a clear spot on 80, 40, or 20 most days unless the propagation is nearly dead. The same goes for 160 in the winter.>>>

It sounds to me as if you are the victim of your own highly successful station building ability with high performance optimizing of antennas and receivers for 160 m. weak signal work.

<<<I don't buy the argument that hogging up 6kHz with baseband and then an additional 12kHz with IM3 that is only 30 to 40 dB for voise communication is advancing the state of the art or experimenting.>>>
I don't know how this morphed into a 6 KHz thing, but the original point was that the ARRL's proposal was too restrictive. I don't think everyone wants to do 6 KHz, or thinks that's okay. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the original point was that a bit more than the -26 db at 3 KHz would work for just about everyone and not make the world unsafe for humanity.

Interestingly, it seems to me that additional rules involving hard and fast numbers, would throw more cold water on one of the whole points of the amateur service: homebrewing and circuit experimentation. There are a few guys, not many to be sure, who are still building their own ssb rigs from scratch. This is what these guys need: more stringent bean counting rules they'll have to conform to before they can but what they have built on the air. I don't know where it came from, but I always had this silly idea that lots of strict numbers type radio laws were a characteristic of the broadcast and land mobile services, and that the point of the amateur service was to be able to build, and run gear without having to worry so much about getting a pink ticket. Now we want increased legislation or whatever you want to call it, that would just about force everyone to become the dreaded appliance ops that we, ideally, are supposed to try to not be.

Then there are the newer software rigs such as the flex radio. God help you if you put one of those on the air without first getting it checked at a professional RF measurement laboratory.

The supreme irony is that the ARRL is rabidly against CC&Rs in housing developments, but does a philisophical one eighty in the area of HF real estate, trying to control what goes on there more and more.


<<<They knew how to build wide transmitters and receivers in the early 1900's. Let's not confuse getting attention or inflating our egos with advancing the state of the art!!>>>

Let's try to avoid subjectivity--every ham I know just wants to ragchew. This ego behavior I keep hearing about, whatever it is...speech making, rush limbaugh wannabes?...is going to go away with a bandwidth rule? I'm not saying there are no egotistical ssb ops, but let's get real--every area of ham radio has egos and always will. You could shut down SSB completely and some guy would get 5BDXCC on cw, and make a speech about it on AM and oh, ego problem. Better just shut down ham radio completely if it's egos bothering you guys.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal Reply
by N3JI on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Steve,
I'm glad you put it this way, as I was about to pull the plug myself. In fact, we *HAVE* talked before on 17m a couple times. I got the "you have too much low end" speech from you!! :-)<

Sorry about that. I didn't know it was you. Actually, too much "low end" bothers my ears and I hate the way it sounds, no matter who's doing it, so don't feel singled out!

>But I'd be glad to talk with you over the air again. It's kind of funny, but one of the things that I remember is that you don't attach yourself to a xx.xx5.00 or xx.xx0.00 frequency, even though someone your talking to tries to.<

Yeah, I do know what you mean. I pretty much operate with my eyes closed, at least figuratively. If I'm in the band and not too close to the edge, I couldn't care less what frequency I'm on and tend to call "CQ" on the clearest spot I can find, which might be 18.137.2, or whatever. I find the clear spot by listening, not by watching the dial. I wish others would do that...

73, Joe!

Steve, WB2WIK/6
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by W8JI on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
N3JI wrote:

<<I guess that the argument boils down to some level of increased IMD generated with ESSB transmissions.>>

The increased IM level and bandwidth of IM mainly spoils weak signals, not S-9 plus QSO's. For example I hear objectionable spits and sputs from stations running increased bass (and treble) sometimes as far as 15 kHz when on quiet bands, and that's when they don't open up TX filters.

The increase in IM is not linear with increased bass levels, it's like a square law effect. A large part of the problem is the poor IM performance of rigs.

That's the basis for my point enhased SSB of all types belongs away from weak signal areas.

The second problem is absolute BW of the main signal. People who do that and claim they are advancing the state of the art or should be allowed to do that because they have a right to be twice as wide as anyone else belong in a confined area with other operators who do the same.

The third problem is when a band is congested, enhanced bass and/or treble prevent stacking in 3 kHz channels because of increased adjacent channel QRM.

<<If I can only measure the difference by connecting directly to a rig, and no detectable difference is observed on a resonably quiet band, would you agree that this arguement is over-emphasized? My hypothesis is that the extra level IMD outside of the intended BW is below the typical noise floor on the bands.>>

Not true at all. The dynamic range here on a typical winter night on 160 between the strongest skywave signals and background is about 85dB @ 250Hz BW. That would be a dynamic range of 75dB @ 2500 Hz, and that's 160 meters. I'm sure it's even larger on 80 and 40.

Allowing for a 20 dB noise increase for an urban location, you'd still need 55dB of range.

>>If the argument that any phone BW outside of 3k is a waste of spectrum, then AM should also be "banned".>>

AM behaves quite well as a general rule. They stay in one area, and that area is well away from noncompatable uses. I think that's largely because the AM people just genuinely enjoy talking and working on gear. Of course there are a couple exceptions, but most just like the fraternity and enjoy old gear.

More important, no one is saying ESSB should be banned. Like AM, it just belongs in an area where it doesn't ruin things for other people. If the AM guys were parking in areas that caused problems, or migrating around on crowded bands, you can bet people would be asking them to be confinded also.

<<Audio BW outside of 300-3.3k definitely adds to clarity, and as an example, just last night I had to get phonetics on street names over a cell phone for directions. The connection was good, but the audio BW allowed for too many ambiguities, and my brain couldn't fill in the missing info on random street names.>>

Based on the experience of telco and land mobile systems for the past 50 years, I don't believe for a second that was caused by lack of BW. That's another one of those "creative facts" tossed around to justify something that is pretty tough to justify technically.

As a matter of fact, the opposite is actually true. I constantly notice when working weak signals the signals that are most difficult to copy are those with pronounced bass. When I want to copy a marginal signal I switch to 2 KHz filters or crank my passband or bandwidth down to reduce distracting noise and focus on the mid-upper ranges of speech. I get a hoot out of the bassmen who sound good when 30 over nine, but when S8 become totally unreadable while a S6 signal under the same conditions with normal audio is Q5.

73 Tom
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>Based on the experience of telco and land mobile systems for the past 50 years, I don't believe for a second that was caused by lack of BW. That's another one of those "creative facts" tossed around to justify something that is pretty tough to justify technically.

As a matter of fact, the opposite is actually true. I constantly notice when working weak signals the signals that are most difficult to copy are those with pronounced bass. When I want to copy a marginal signal I switch to 2 KHz filters or crank my passband or bandwidth down to reduce distracting noise and focus on the mid-upper ranges of speech. I get a hoot out of the bassmen who sound good when 30 over nine, but when S8 become totally unreadable while a S6 signal under the same conditions with normal audio is Q5.<

I agree entirely and wouldn't change a word in either of these paragraphs.

Now, it is true that some people just don't speak very clearly, and may need a lot of "EQ" in order to sound as intelligible as the average person. I hear a lot of that problem, not only on the air, but just in life. That's why I wrote the "It's Not Your Microphone -- It's You!" article published here in eHam, http://www.eham.net/articles/8069.

In my experience, one can spend $500 for microphones and go-faster accessories to try to sound good, or they can spend $500 for five voice lessons, after which they can use that improvement everywhere, for the rest of their lives: No new equipment required. I think the latter makes more sense.

WB2WIK/6
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Based on the experience of telco and land mobile systems for the past 50 years, I don't believe for a second that was caused by lack of BW. That's another one of those "creative facts" tossed around to justify something that is pretty tough to justify technically."

My experience is exactly opposite. I know Bell Labs did a lot of work on bandwidth. The 300-3kc we know so well in telephony was primarily driven by economics. It was "good enough" for communication while minimizing the loading and equalization costs on long cables. Once it got ensconced in the network it was impossible to get rid of. It's been known for a pretty long time, however, that extending the bandwidth up another khz would add significantly to the ability to get a message through with fewer mistakes. This could be a fertile field for experimentation and study if someone might be looking for a masters or doctoral thesis.

I know that adding bass increases the naturalness of a signal and can relieve fatigue during long listening sessions but it is my understanding from research that it adds little to intelligibility. I guess I agree with the people who have said whatever floats your boat until maximimizing bandwidth utilization during busy periods becomes a consideration - then let "consideration of others" be the watchword.

tim ab0wr
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KA3CJX on May 13, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
It's all been said. The proposal is for too narrow bandwidth at the -26dB point. It discourages experimentation. FCC just finished shooting this proposal down.
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WB2WIK on May 13, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal Reply
by AB0WR on May 12, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Based on the experience of telco and land mobile systems for the past 50 years, I don't believe for a second that was caused by lack of BW. That's another one of those "creative facts" tossed around to justify something that is pretty tough to justify technically."

My experience is exactly opposite. I know Bell Labs did a lot of work on bandwidth. The 300-3kc we know so well in telephony was primarily driven by economics.<

I disagree with this. I worked for BTL in the early 70's, which was still long after the bandwidth issue was settled there, and we studied this a lot even then. Remember AT&T had a monopoly for almost 100 years and operated as a research foundation as well as a service provider, so most profits had to be sunk back into R&D and cost was always a secondary consideration, at least back then.

The BW restriction was studied and re-studied, and was still being studied in the 1970s. To use high output microphones that required miniscule operating bias and could work under an incredibly wide range of climatic/environmental conditions, carbon elements were used. Those have virtually no response above 3 kHz anyway, so adding more BW would have served no purpose. The click suppressors across the earpieces had a lot of capacitance and rolled off high frequency response on the "receiving" end of the circuit, as well. The TX/RX BWs were very closely matched, and telephones without any amplification could still produce ear-splitting volume. Kind of amazing when you think about it, and how long ago the technology was developed.

AT&T Western Electric ran tests throughout the 70s, when I was there, as they had for decades before, to determine telco circuit readability with myriad human voices superimposed on high levels of static and wideband noise. The circuits performed admirably and there was never any reason to increase circuit BW.

You can't compare cellular/PCS systems to LL systems. Older analog cellular phones/systems could tolerate some fading (QSB), the newer digital ones really don't. You're either there, or you're not. The phones are so small their microphones are pinhead sized and terrible, and to make matters worse, they're usually nowhere near the user's mouth, relying heavily on vibrations to conduct the audio signal. The earphones are also poor and produce amazing volume considering the battery pack size and power consumption, but at higher volume levels have a great deal of distortion. Using a 600 Hz signal from my HP 200CD acoustically coupled to my cellphone and then my HP 331A distortion analyzer acoustically coupled to my other cellphone on an adjacent bench, I've measured more than 40% distortion on that loop, with strong "all bars" signal strength, at low volume from the receiver.

With crappy earpieces, crappy microphones and tons of distortion, it's no wonder half the world can't understand each other when using these wireless wonders. But, it really has nothing to do with bandwidth.

WB2WIK/6






 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K5KTD on May 13, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
If I hadn't already resigned my ARRL membership, I'd resign it again.
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by K4CJX on May 14, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
QUOTES FROM the results of FCC NPRM RM-10740, Wednesday November 24, 2004.


"4. Voluntary band planning allows amateur stations that desire to pursue different operating activities to pursue these activities by dividing or segmenting the amateur service spectrum. Voluntary band planning also allows the amateur service community the flexibility to 'reallocate' the amateur service spectrum among operating interests as new operating interests and technologies emerge or operating interests and technologies fall into disfavor."

"Discussion. As an initial matter, we note that one of the purposes of the amateur service is to contribute to the advancement of the radio art.[1] We believe that amateur radio operators using amateur service spectrum to develop new communications systems are using the service in a manner that is consistent with the basis and purpose of the amateur service. We also believe that our Rules should not be an impediment to amateur radio operatorís development of new or improved communication systems. In this regard, we note that the reason amateur radio operators currently may not transmit communications that combine image emission types and data emission types on HF frequency segments where data emissions are authorized is not a technical reason, but rather is because our Rules do not authorize stations to transmit both image and data emission types on any HF frequency segments.[2] We also note that amateur radio operators apparently have developed communication systems and technologies that transmit both image and data emission types, and that they are using these systems for communicating. For this reason, we are persuaded that our Rules are not in harmony with current emission and operating practices and that our Rules may be impeding amateur radio operators in advancing the radio art."


 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by AB0WR on May 14, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Discussion. As an initial matter, we note that one of the purposes of the amateur service is to contribute to the advancement of the radio art.[1] We believe that amateur radio operators using amateur service spectrum to develop new communications systems are using the service in a manner that is consistent with the basis and purpose of the amateur service. We also believe that our Rules should not be an impediment to amateur radio operatorís development of new or improved communication systems. In this regard, we note that the reason amateur radio operators currently may not transmit communications that combine image emission types and data emission types on HF frequency segments where data emissions are authorized is not a technical reason, but rather is because our Rules do not authorize stations to transmit both image and data emission types on any HF frequency segments.[2] We also note that amateur radio operators apparently have developed communication systems and technologies that transmit both image and data emission types, and that they are using these systems for communicating. For this reason, we are persuaded that our Rules are not in harmony with current emission and operating practices and that our Rules may be impeding amateur radio operators in advancing the radio art."

Everyone should note that this does NOT, I repeat *NOT* say that automatic (be they fully automatic or semi-automatic) robots should be allowed to mix on an unrestricted basis with other operational modes.

It does NOT, I repeat *NOT*, say that the amateur bands need to have bandwidth limitations applied to the signals being used on the bands nor does it say that allocation methods on the bands needs to be changed.

What it *DOES* say is "we note that the reason amateur radio operators currently may not transmit communications that combine image emission types and data emission types on HF frequency segments where data emissions are authorized is not a technical reason, but rather is because our Rules do not authorize stations to transmit both image and data emission types on any HF frequency segments." This is a *CONTENT* limitation only.

The problem can be fixed by a small change to the rules concerning *CONTENT*. It does not require a major upheaval in the ham bands based on *NO* objective data such as interference studies, spectrum efficiency studies, technical efficiency studies, but instead on a "seat-of-the-pants" recommendation of a small ad hoc committee exceeding the scope of their charter.

tim ab0wr
 
ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA4FJF on May 14, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
When single sideband was first becoming popular on the ham bands (late 1950s, early 1960s), it was very controversial. Magazine letters to the editor (QST, CQ, 73) of the time were filled with the debate. "Real" phone operators argued that the mode junked up the bands with the sounds of monkey chatter. Others argued that the FCC disallowed voice scrambling and therefore SSB was plainly illegal since transmissions needed special equipment to decipher. Still other AM phone ops lamented that sideband wasn't true to the essence of amateur radio: they argued that the whole point of ham radio was that we were putting "amateur" radio stations on the air and that sideband's fidelity distorted the sound of the human voice in ways that no self-respecting station op would accept. The new sideband operators were renegades in so many ways, and some AM ops even went so far as to QRM them off the air when they could.

I write this bit of history only to remind us that these arguments about bandwidth, fidelity, and phone mode choice are very old. Ironically, the same type of person who is arguing against fidelity and broader bandwidth today (the traditionalist who eschews change) argued vociferously in an opposite way some 45 years ago.

Randy
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by WA0LYK on May 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
To all,

I had been thinking of telling my director that I disagreed with the bandwidth plan and recommending the Canadian plan. However, last night something else came to me.

What do you think about using the necessary bandwidth as expressed in emission designators as the determing factor? That is, less than or equal to 2K50XXX is the lower portion of a band and greater than 2K50XXX is the upper.

Certain designators could be allowed in other portions, i.e., CW (XXXHA1A) throughout the band, or some could be restricted.

This would then give maximum flexibility to developing a band plan that would assign certain emission types to certain segments.

New emission types would only have to use the ITU/FCC accepted calculations for determing necessary bandwidth to decide where they operate.

It would certainly remove one of my main complaints about having to measure the occupied bandwidth of transmitters to insure they meet the requirement. You also wouldn't need waivers for DSB-AM or ISB or anything else. You could also set a limit for necessary bandwidths like 10K0.

Jim
WA0LYK
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by NL7W on June 6, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Steve, WB2WIK:

Single tone testing of newer digital cellular systems is invalid, given the voice optimized vocoders used today. For objective and accurate testing, one must send a voice wave file through these digital systems, recover said wave file at another edge device (cell phone or digital LMR system radio) and do a comparative analysis against the original voice wave file.

For more info: read about CTA Communication's Radio Coverage Evaluator (RaCE) product.

NL7W
 
RE: ARRL SSB Bandwidth Proposal  
by KO6UJ on June 8, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
What's all this bruhaha?

A 3KHz bandwidth limit for SSB is an excellent idea. Why?

Have amateurs forgotten that if a ham wants better sounding xmt audio, there are other phone modes more capable of fidelity. One for example is AM. Try AM for better fidelity. Let's not forget FM for the best fidelity.

I can remember back in the sixties, when "real hams" would operate using AM phone only, because they didn't want to sound like "Donald Duck." So, if a ham wants to join the opinionated ranks of the mostly SK OT's from the 50's and 1960's, they should move to AM . . . or FM.

Let's kick this up an notch. We are hams and supposedly on the leading edge of technology, right? Why have we not pushed the edge of the envelope with digital voice modes? VoIP is technically better than ESSB could ever hope to be, and it occupies less bandwidth. I'd like to see some discussion there. Fellow amateurs, we are really missing the boat.

Personally, I like sounding like Donald Duck. :-)

73
Guy
 
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