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Author Topic: ICOM ID 51A HT Reviews ??  (Read 16642 times)
KB0OXD
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« on: March 26, 2013, 12:31:09 PM »

Just heard about & read up on the new D-STAR/APRS radio from ICOM.  I'm wondering if anybody here owns it & how good it is not only for D-STAR but APRS as well

Reason I ask is because I wanna get into both (I'm only on APRS via my Android now) BUT don't wanna have to $pend $$$ on more radios than needed to do it (Hence, no Kenwood or Yaesu :-) )

One specific question however, with the ICOM Radio, does it have integrated TNC technology built-in or would I need a TNC to use the radio & get on APRS from home with my PC (Still have the Kantronics KPC3+ I won from Tom, W5KUB's webcast of Huntsville a couple years ago so I could FINALLY put that to use for this if need be Wink ) ??

Comments?

Cheers & 73 Grin

« Last Edit: March 26, 2013, 12:39:29 PM by KB0OXD » Logged

Pat Cook, KB0OXD
Englewood, CO
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KE4NYV
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« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2013, 01:24:40 PM »

This radio does NOT have APRS built-in.  It doesn't even have an AX.25 capable TNC/modem.  It is strictly DStar/analog audio capable.  There is a common misconception that the GPS location option in DStar is APRS and it's not even close.  In order to run 1200 AX.25 APRS with this radio, you would need some kind of external tracker/TNC and GPS connected to it through the speaker/mic jacks.
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KB0OXD
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« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2013, 02:35:09 PM »

This radio does NOT have APRS built-in.  It doesn't even have an AX.25 capable TNC/modem.  It is strictly DStar/analog audio capable.  There is a common misconception that the GPS location option in DStar is APRS and it's not even close.  In order to run 1200 AX.25 APRS with this radio, you would need some kind of external tracker/TNC and GPS connected to it through the speaker/mic jacks.
Really then would you care to explain this to me.....
Quote
Other features

    * TX voice memory (1 channel, 60 seconds) for repeated calls
    * Voice synthesizer function announces frequency, mode and call sign
    * Voice memory function records incoming and outgoing calls and can be used as a voice recorder
    * 128×104 dots large full dot-matrix display (1.6 times larger than the ID-31A/E)
    * CSV formatted communication log
    * 10-step battery voltage indicator
    * Integrated GPS receiver with GPS logging function
    * IPX7 submersible (1 meter depth water for 30 minutes)
    * micro SD card slot for voice and log data storage and data cloning
    * DR (D-STAR repeater) mode operation makes it easy to access D-STAR repeaters
    * Repeater search function searches up to 20 nearby repeater sites
That's from the ICOM web page on the radio here

Looks as though you're the one with the misunderstanding.....

Cheers & 73 Grin
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Pat Cook, KB0OXD
Englewood, CO
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K0JEG
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Posts: 653




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« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2013, 05:35:17 PM »

Once again, AFAIK, there is no built in APRS capability in the ID-51a. D-star uses a completely different type of digital modulation, as well as a non-APRS frame format for sending GPS data.

However, there are D-star gateways that will convert the D-star information to an APRS compatible frame:

2013-03-22 13:50:49 MDT: KB4SHQ>API51,DSTAR*,qAR,KA4YMZ-B:/221950z3517.04N/08102.38W>068/000/A=000736HELLO

Note in the frame (pulled from APRS.fi) the DSTAR* route. Unless there's someone in the local area who is routing position information between the D-star network and the APRS network, the only points these two networks touch is on the Internet, through the APRS-IS. If that's all you're interested in, that's fine. But if you want to have your position be seen on your buddy's TH-d72, it won't happen without a lot of manual routing that may or may not work, depending on how the RF links in your area are configured. Generally, position reports are one-way (RF to Internet) on the APRS-IS, to keep from flooding the RF channel. One question I have is what frequency are you transmitting on for sending position data?

More info about the D-PRS to APRS gateway software can be found here:
http://www.aprs-is.net/images/D-PRS.pdf
« Last Edit: March 26, 2013, 06:13:15 PM by K0JEG » Logged
KB0OXD
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« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2013, 12:12:36 AM »

Once again, AFAIK, there is no built in APRS capability in the ID-51a. D-star uses a completely different type of digital modulation, as well as a non-APRS frame format for sending GPS data.

However, there are D-star gateways that will convert the D-star information to an APRS compatible frame:
I know - D-PRS !! Figured that much
Quote
2013-03-22 13:50:49 MDT: KB4SHQ>API51,DSTAR*,qAR,KA4YMZ-B:/221950z3517.04N/08102.38W>068/000/A=000736HELLO

Note in the frame (pulled from APRS.fi) the DSTAR* route. Unless there's someone in the local area who is routing position information between the D-star network and the APRS network, the only points these two networks touch is on the Internet, through the APRS-IS. If that's all you're interested in, that's fine. But if you want to have your position be seen on your buddy's TH-d72, it won't happen without a lot of manual routing that may or may not work, depending on how the RF links in your area are configured. Generally, position reports are one-way (RF to Internet) on the APRS-IS, to keep from flooding the RF channel.
Can't be any different than the way my Android-generated KB0OXD-5 beacon goes out over APRS via the the local I-Gate.  At least it's APRS over RF & you can have much more fun with a radio & computer interface for APRS (AKA the TNC) than you can with just a smartphone Grin
Quote
One question I have is what frequency are you transmitting on for sending position data?
Whatever is allowed & set aside by the local APRS & D-STAR groups.  Not planning on anything radical like some Hams like to do
Quote
More info about the D-PRS to APRS gateway software can be found here:
http://www.aprs-is.net/images/D-PRS.pdf
I'll give that a read Wink

Cheers & 73 Grin
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Pat Cook, KB0OXD
Englewood, CO
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K0JEG
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« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2013, 06:21:38 AM »

BTW, I'm not trying to start an argument, just attempting to be precise.
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KB0OXD
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« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2013, 04:37:57 PM »

BTW, I'm not trying to start an argument, just attempting to be precise.
No problem Smiley (I think some on the SIG might've thought I was trying to start one though)

If APRS & DPRS turn out to be two different modes, it'll be nice to do BOTH !!  Got the TNC so no problem there.  Got a spare Android with GPS chip (Not ready to rock the one I'm currently using just yet Grin ) so (Assuming I can get pre-made wiring from Kantronics that will work) no problem there.  Got a PC (Obviously.  In fact, I have TWO of 'em Grin ) so DEFINATELY no problem there.  All I need is a cheap 2M mobile rig (Available at any Hamfest) & a new antenna (My IC-706 MKII-G is probably shot all to hell on 2M/440 & the antenna I have is almost 10 years old & pretty rusty).  Can get the antenna at a Hamfest too Grin

Getting a D-STAR radio as well for DPRS would simply add to the fun Grin

Cheers & 73 Grin
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Pat Cook, KB0OXD
Englewood, CO
WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | APRS TRACKER
K0JEG
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Posts: 653




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« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2013, 06:28:32 AM »

BTW, I'm not trying to start an argument, just attempting to be precise.
No problem Smiley (I think some on the SIG might've thought I was trying to start one though)

If APRS & DPRS turn out to be two different modes, it'll be nice to do BOTH !!  Got the TNC so no problem there.  Got a spare Android with GPS chip (Not ready to rock the one I'm currently using just yet Grin ) so (Assuming I can get pre-made wiring from Kantronics that will work) no problem there.  Got a PC (Obviously.  In fact, I have TWO of 'em Grin ) so DEFINATELY no problem there.  All I need is a cheap 2M mobile rig (Available at any Hamfest) & a new antenna (My IC-706 MKII-G is probably shot all to hell on 2M/440 & the antenna I have is almost 10 years old & pretty rusty).  Can get the antenna at a Hamfest too Grin

Getting a D-STAR radio as well for DPRS would simply add to the fun Grin

Cheers & 73 Grin

You can use APRS Droid in AFSK mode to transmit and receive packet using the audio speaker and microphone. There was a simple circuit in QST last year to make a DATA interface for Android devices that would key a transmitter when audio was sent from the Android device. Might be a little tricky interfacing with your HT, but I'm sure there's a way.
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KE4NYV
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« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2013, 11:57:11 AM »


Looks as though you're the one with the misunderstanding.....

I have 15+ years of experience with APRS that says I am not misunderstanding.  Here's how it works.  APRS from the RF low level is based on AX.25 1200 baud packet.  In order for THAT radio to operate APRS, you must have some kind of external AX.25 1200 baud tracker/TNC connected to it, with a GPS connected to that device.  The internal GPS will NOT work for what you want it to, if you want to run APRS over RF.  D-PRS is based on using the DStar data protocol which is some kind of GMSK codec.  I tried and gave up on DStar when it first came out.

The ONLY way your D-PRS "packets" will get from your radio to the 2M APRS 1200 baud network is through a gateway, as it was already stated in a previous post.

Now, the flip side to that is a radio that is made to do AX.25 1200 baud packet AND format the beacons to the APRS standard.  Your choice of handhelds is short...the current production Kenwood TH-D72 or the previous model TH-D7A (now discontinued, but the market is flooded with used units).

Ignorance and arrogance is a dangerous combination.  I'm not looking for a fight either, but if you are going to throw around accusations without any basic understanding of the subject, be prepared for a response.
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K9MHZ
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« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2013, 07:55:00 AM »


Looks as though you're the one with the misunderstanding.....

I have 15+ years of experience with APRS that says I am not misunderstanding.  Here's how it works.  APRS from the RF low level is based on AX.25 1200 baud packet.  In order for THAT radio to operate APRS, you must have some kind of external AX.25 1200 baud tracker/TNC connected to it, with a GPS connected to that device.  The internal GPS will NOT work for what you want it to, if you want to run APRS over RF.  D-PRS is based on using the DStar data protocol which is some kind of GMSK codec.  I tried and gave up on DStar when it first came out.

The ONLY way your D-PRS "packets" will get from your radio to the 2M APRS 1200 baud network is through a gateway, as it was already stated in a previous post.

Now, the flip side to that is a radio that is made to do AX.25 1200 baud packet AND format the beacons to the APRS standard.  Your choice of handhelds is short...the current production Kenwood TH-D72 or the previous model TH-D7A (now discontinued, but the market is flooded with used units).

Ignorance and arrogance is a dangerous combination.  I'm not looking for a fight either, but if you are going to throw around accusations without any basic understanding of the subject, be prepared for a response.


NYV.....Very well said/written. 

OXD....Good grief, blasting people who are just trying to help, while not even doing the slightest amount of homework.  I don't claim to be one of them, but there some very bright people in our hobby, so maybe engaging them rather than showing your ignorance might be a better way to go....and you might actually learn something.  Could come in handy for you....being a Technician for 20 years, don't you think?
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W4KVW
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« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2013, 08:33:39 PM »

http://www.pd0hni.nl/pdfdocs/ID-51A_E_Manual.pdf

MAYBE the above posted copy of the manual for the ID-51A will help?

Clayton
W4KVW
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K9MHZ
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« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2013, 06:00:22 AM »

Clayton....nope, that's the small manual and won't be much help, re: this topic.  

A person (OXD) needs to go through the expanded manual that describes GPS-A.

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