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Author Topic: The "D-Star" Tizzy  (Read 12584 times)
N3HFS
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Posts: 212




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« Reply #30 on: June 24, 2013, 12:49:54 PM »

The spectrum remains a vast wasteland  where there is little substantive exchange. From the elderly men who each day trudge to the radio room to talk to the same dying old men on the low bands, to those that shout meaningless numbers at each other for hours on end in Contests or the FAUX world of "Special Events" and "Field Day".

I must disagree strongly with this sentiment.  I equate the Amateur Radio spectrum as somewhat analogous to national parks.  
Such parks are vast stretches of wilderness that are not in private hands that would exploit the acreage for maximum profit.  The uses of such parks is generally rather narrowly confined to hiking, camping, and perhaps a little (non-subsistence) fishing or hunting.  In your view, certainly, experiences such as physical exercise and outdoor living can be found in other ways besides underutilizing such vast lands!  Wilderness environments have already been fully mined for biology and nature studies, have they not?  There is no more to be gained by humans from leaving that much of the earth fallow!

If viewed in the same way, amateur radio spectrum creates tremendous waste and foregone opportunities in the underutilization of such potentially valuable (read: profitable) spectrum.  But instead, hams are merely recreationally getting in touch with the electronics and atmospherics that are governed by laws of physics that cannot otherwise be explored outside of textbooks.  Can the development of interhuman communication skills really be accomplished in the same way in the classroom or computer simulator?

If individuals are denied access to the priceless limited resources of nature in a pristine and open environment, there are huge losses to be sustained in human endeavor, the understanding of nature and science, and the carefree exploration of mental exercises in the real world.  This is the reason that amateur radio, even when not made use of by large swaths of the population, remains an incredibly important resource to protect, defend, and grow.
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KE7TMA
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Posts: 471




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« Reply #31 on: June 24, 2013, 07:09:49 PM »

many more will join us.

No, I think D-Star has peaked despite Icom enlisting lots of people to cheerlead is technology in exchange for free radio gear.

Sorry, but this sounds like unsupported hearsay.

I very much doubt that Icom has given away more free radio gear to promote D-Star than they would to promote any new radio. Icom doesn't make any more profit on a D-Star radio than on a non-D-Star radio. Icom has to pay a license fee for the use of the AMBE codec just like anyone else who wishes to make a D-Star radio. The typical D-Star radio costs more because of the added technology and the current small audience.

I think the primary reason why Icom wants D-star to take off is because it keeps Amateur Radio fresh and has the potential to appeal to a broader (younger audience).

With only a handheld HT, a D-Star user can potentially, send text messages, check email, connect to the internet, dx around the world and there is no usage fee other than the cost of a D-Star HT.

I think this appeals to the typical smart-phone using, young technologist.

Lots of clubs were given very steep discounts or even free D-Star gear, including repeaters and radios, over the last few years.  Icom took a loss on all this gear hoping to get the infrastructure going so people would buy the HTs.  The thing that lots of D-Star advocates seem to forget (or intentionally misrepresent) is that D-Star is not just a new radio, it's a whole new proprietary mode.  So far as I have seen in my area, the only people using D-Star are the older folks.  Younger people seem to be happy with cheaper radios, using APRS and IRLP to basically have all the features of D-Star but for a lot less money, and in a more compatible way.

With either of my HTs I can DX around the world over IRLP.  With my VX-8 I can also send text messages.  If I want to connect to the internet and send and receive emails this is also possible but a bit more difficult than D-Star.  Anyway, there are people working on an open solution which can be dropped-in to D-Star and replace the AMBE codec.  I think this will be a very attractive solution, and it will eliminate the objections that most amateurs I know have regarding D-Star - that it is proprietary and closed to experimenters who don't want to buy a chip from a single source.
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KE7TMA
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Posts: 471




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« Reply #32 on: June 24, 2013, 07:12:56 PM »

Talking is what CB'ers do.  Hams want to learn new technology and most hams learn by doing.

I know some amateurs who couldn't care less about experimenting with radios.  They simply need access to radio communications to support other hobbies of theirs.  That's fine - as far as I know nobody can mandate how hams use their radios, or why, as long as they follow the regulations.

It's a heck of a thing to tell all of us that we may be doing ham radio incorrectly because we don't conform to your particular outlook on the hobby.
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W4AMP
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Posts: 96


WWW

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« Reply #33 on: June 25, 2013, 06:51:14 PM »

Why y'all being so hard on the Dog?

Personally DSTAR does nothing for me. If folks like it, fine by me.
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W4KVW
Member

Posts: 501




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« Reply #34 on: June 25, 2013, 08:22:28 PM »

[quote

No, I think D-Star has peaked despite Icom enlisting lots of people to cheerlead is technology in exchange for free radio gear.
[/quote]

I could stand some FREE gear.Where do I sign up? {:>)   Grin   Smiley

Clayton
W4KVW
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KE7TMA
Member

Posts: 471




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« Reply #35 on: July 02, 2013, 09:34:32 PM »

[quote

No, I think D-Star has peaked despite Icom enlisting lots of people to cheerlead is technology in exchange for free radio gear.

I could stand some FREE gear.Where do I sign up? {:>)   Grin   Smiley

Clayton
W4KVW
[/quote]

If you are a member of a club and there are no D-Star repeaters in your area, simply send Icom a mail on your club's letterhead.  Depending on how generous they are (probably relating to population density of your area) they will give you either a discounted or free D-Star repeater and a few HTs.
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