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Author Topic: Low Power vs High Power in the 2001 CQWW  (Read 1317 times)
VE3BUC
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« on: November 03, 2001, 02:06:45 PM »

This year in the 2001 CQWW Paul (VE3SY) and I (Don VE3BUC) decided it might be fun to operate separate single op stations from the same location, Paul's great location near Kitchener, ON. In previous years (1998-2000) we had operated m/m so it was time for a change. I ran a low power station and Paul high power.

As expected the hp station resulted in more Qs, 1491 vs 1124. What was surprising was that the lp station ran ahead of the hp in zones and countries until quite late in the contest. There was no conscious effort to seek multipliers so band selection may have been a factor.

Antenna and thus band selection was a cooperative effort. Probably either of us alone would have changed bands and/or antenna direction more often but as it was we tried to not change frequently so as not to interfere with the other station's operation. This meant missing some contacts that were in the wrong direction with marginal signals. Strangely there were a number of stations with quite strong signals that could not hear us even when the antennas were pointed in the right direction. Both high and low power stations experienced this phenomenon.

One difference in operating the two stations was that hp was able to sustain much longer runs. This was especially true on the lower bands (160-40) although the lp was able to get short runs on 160 and 10. Both of us spent a lot of time s&p which generally resulted in a better rate.

High power really made a big difference on 160, 80 and 40 where most of the extra Qs were made. In fact the number of contacts on 20, 15 and 10 were almost the same (1035 vs 1001). I had always felt that my performance (or lack of) at home on 40 and 80 was due to my antennas. But this weekend suggests that power is an even bigger factor on these bands.

We each worked DXCC on one band. Paul on 15 and my lp station on 10.

Interestingly CT said the hp station operated 24.7 hours and Writelog reported the lp at 31.5 even though in real time we both operated roughly the same amount of time. Clearly different parameters are used by each program in calculating on and off times.

One of the highlights of the contest was when Bob (VE3KZ) beat me out in the pileup for SV9CVY. Bob's station was not far away so propagation was similar. Oh yes, Bob was working qrp. Smiley Nice going Bob.

I'd be interested if anyone else has done something similar using high vs low power. What were your experiences?

73,
Don VE3BUC
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2001, 05:12:42 PM »

Good work, Don.  You did well, especially considering the solar storm & aurora that occurred during the CQWW, and where you were located during these events.

I wasn't on for the CQWW last month myself, as I'm tending to new antenna installations at home, but some friends of mine worked VB2V in Zone 2 and did extraordinarily well, I'm sure in part because of the somewhat rare zone.

I have also noted the pheonomenon you describe, where QRO is not much required on 10m, and much more required on 160m, etc.  I always attributed that to: (1) It's easy to build/buy/install and make work gain antennas on 10m;  (2) It's easy to get 10m beams up high enough above ground that they really work well -- 2 wavelengths is not difficult, and 3-4 wavelengths achievable for many; (3) It's difficult to build or install antennas that don't have severe "negative gain" on 160; (4) HF noise levels are most severe on 160, and least severe on 10, most of the time.  (5) 160 is only useful during dark hours, which right now is about 12 hours a day; 10-15-20 can be useful nearly 24 hours a day.  And all the other bands fall in between.

When I operate at my "big gun" station back east (K2XR in NJ, big beams & big towers on a big hill), I have often noted that if I flip the amp "off" on 10 or 15 meters, it hardly matters.  Can keep a run going either way.  The amp really is important on 160, a bit less on 80, a bit less on 40 and so forth.

73 de Steve WB2WIK/6

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N2MR
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« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2002, 06:11:51 AM »

 "Both of us spent a lot of time s&p which generally resulted in a better rate."
I don't get that statement. Try the same test again in the 2006 CQWW and see if HP is any better.
                              Mark N2MR
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