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Author Topic: Band Scope -- How Important?  (Read 1120 times)
KQ6UP
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Posts: 136




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« on: June 09, 2007, 12:48:50 PM »

I have talked to a couple of hams who say they would never own another radio without a band scope.  I just want to see if others have a different opinion, and what their reasoning is.


Chris KQ6UP
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AA4PB
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« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2007, 04:41:07 PM »

It kind of depends on how you operate - do you need to know what is going on around you. For contesting it can be handy. I find it most useful on 6M to be able to see if there are signals on the band other than where I am listening at the time.
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KQ6UP
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« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2007, 07:18:28 PM »

Yep, one of the guys that told me that was is big on 6m.

Chris KQ6UP
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KB9CRY
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« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2007, 08:18:24 PM »

What's a Band Scope?

I have 337 worked; would a Band Scope have helped me work them faster?
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K9KJM
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« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2007, 09:09:42 PM »

Yep, Once you get used to using the bandscope, It would be rough to get along without one.

REALLY great on 6 meters!  Shows just where the activity is at any given time.

Icom 756PRO series of radios. The bandscope feature works GREAT!
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N4KZ
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« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2007, 11:20:45 AM »

I've heard several hams make the same statement about having a bandscope. I bought an Icom Pro3 18 months ago and enjoy the bandscope -- particularly for 10 and 6 meters. But I did just fine for the 37 years before that without a bandscope -- 300-plus countries worked. So, I enjoy having and using a bandscope but don't get as excited about it as some do.

Six months ago, I bought a used Icom 746Pro as a second/backup/2m SSB rig. It has a scope of sorts but it's not nearly as good as the Pro3's. To me, not having Dual Watch on the 746Pro is a bigger issue than a bandscope but the 746Pro has 2-meter all-mode coverage and I definitely enjoy that for weak-signal work.

Frankly, for the HF operating I do and the $3K I spent, I probably could have bought a new 746Pro and a new amp and have been quite happy. The Pro3's front-end is better but it's only a very slight difference.    

73, N4KZ
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ONAIR
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« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2007, 10:19:20 PM »

    Do you need a scope?  In the '10s '20s and '30s some hams worked with pencil marked dials and no digital readouts... radios, keys, mikes and antennas that they had to build themselves!  Some say that operating was actually more fun back then.
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AD6WL
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« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2007, 05:50:42 PM »

For contesting I find the Scope on my second radio an invaluable tool.  I run (call CQ) with my first radio and Search & Pounce on a different band wtih my second radio.  I can do a quick check on other bands and see if there are any other signals on while still calling CW on my first radio.
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KE3WD
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« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2007, 09:17:06 PM »

Besides some of the good reasons mentioned already, you can learn a lot from a decent band scope.  

Being able to see that other guy's wide signal and all those sidebands as you hear his overmodulation is the picture worth a thousand words.

Seeing splatter on the 'scope will turn you into a different kind of operator.  If you pay attention and want to be one.  

The 'scope will also give you a very good mental picture of the amount of bandspace we have and the amount of bandwidth that different operating modes occupy.  

Seeing noise levels and the ratio of signals above the noise (or sometimes down in that noise) and comparing that with your ear's ability to copy the signals can also be invaluable.  

As to "how important" having a bandscope may be, that's one of those things that only you can answer in the long run, you may find that you can't live without one after having one for a bit, or you may find that for your particular interests and operating practices it isn't all that valuable to you.  


.
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W8KQE
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« Reply #9 on: June 14, 2007, 07:21:06 AM »

A band scope, such as exists in the Icom 756 series, is a GREAT feature and tool.  I use it extensively on 6 meters to help guage openings and where new stations have appeared on the band.  Once you use one, it is hard to not have one!
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KB1THH
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« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2007, 10:11:59 AM »

   I can only talk from a long time radio listener's perspective. One reciever I own has a band scope on it that I find very usefull when looking for activity when things seem to be quiet. I'd rate it as important for my radio use and needs but only for one radio. The other radios, dual VFO's are more useful for me.
   To me, a band scope is like having a visual scanner of the band without disrupting your copy of the  frequency that you are listening to or working on.

   All depends on the individual, their needs and use.

 
73  Joe
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K0CWO
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Posts: 419




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« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2007, 10:44:46 PM »

A band scope is like a fish finder.  Some guys catch fish without them, some guys feel they can't catch fish without them.  I have a band scope in the shack and a fish finder in my boat.  I make regular contacts without the band scope, and catch fish regularly without the fish finder.  The band scope and fish finder increase my "situational awareness".

73, BJ
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WA4DQS
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« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2007, 10:55:50 PM »

They are un-necessary and certainly addictive!
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