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Author Topic: Exchange "PWRTAQT" instead of "0245 15" in RTTY contests  (Read 12652 times)
OK4FX
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« on: May 11, 2014, 10:07:39 AM »

How to deal with this type of received exchange properly? Sence advises me that I should convert letters to numbers which I do, but then I have different information in my log than what I received.

Thank you in advance for your experiences.

73, Mirek, OK4FX
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N0IU
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« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2014, 10:33:01 AM »

After looking at one of the most popular contest calendars, I do not see any RTTY contests where that type of exchange would be used. The Volta contest is this weekend and the exchange is the RST + QSO No. + CQ Zone. There is an RSGB and Aegean contest where the exchange is the RST + QSO No.

I would say ignore this station.
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OK4FX
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« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2014, 10:47:22 AM »

Thank you for answer.

This was in Volta RTTY contest this weekend. Whole received exchange was with rst, sorry for confusion: 599 PWRTAQT.
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N3QE
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« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2014, 11:44:31 AM »

PWRTAQT (unshifted) is 0245-15 (shifted), a valid Volta exchange. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baudot_code.

This happens when the "shift" is lost somewhere. Or when the transmitting guy has disabled "unshift on space" for transmit and the receiving guy has enabled "unshift on space". UOS on will be the most common configuration.

If you note some senders are consistently messing up numeric exchanges, note this: In a contest some will strip out all "unnecessary" shifts thinking this will speed transmission, but what they aren't taking into account is that they will be asked for many more fills when folks are confused, and this will actually slow their rate. Making sure there is a shift at the beginning of every numeric exchange component is very wise. Some will put hyphens between numeric components rather than spaces thinking this will avoid shifts, but again this is a false economy.

There is no real confusion. Most modern RTTY software allows you to mouseover any section and see it both shifted and unshifted. If you know that part of the exchange was supposed to be numeric, just use the shifted version. Similar to when the DX sends zone 15 as "AE" in CW and you know those are cut numbers.

This is just the first level of "brain-enhanced RTTY copy". There was a very good article by, I think a JA RTTY contester, in NCJ last year, where he detailed how application of his brain plus knowledge of common callsigns and RTTY encoding, lets him pick out the correct call from garbled print.

I myself am fairly new to RTTY contesting and really enjoy it. Many contesters use multiple decoder windows simultaneously, as well as their ears and brains and knowledge of callsigns, to get correct copy under adverse conditions. It is not a mindless exercise, it is actually rather engaging to be watching a couple decoder windows and using knowledge of callsigns and exchanges while listening to the signal to get good copy.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2014, 11:51:53 AM by N3QE » Logged
N0IU
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« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2014, 02:38:59 PM »

This was in Volta RTTY contest this weekend. Whole received exchange was with rst, sorry for confusion: 599 PWRTAQT.

I gave my first answer before you said what contest it was so in this case, I will change my answer. Normally I am a huge proponent of logging exactly what you hear, but I have been doing RTTY contesting for over 20 years and I often see "TOO" instead of "599" and I log the exchange the way I believe it was meant to be sent, not necessarily the way I received it and there is nothing wrong with this.
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OK4FX
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« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2014, 03:15:31 PM »

Thank you for all your answers. I know that unshifted report/exchange is used for reduction of "unnecessary" bytes. But I was interested in the general view of this "issue". Comparison to cut numbers in cw describes it best.  It is a pity I haven't thought about it myself. :-)

73, Mirek
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K0YQ
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« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2014, 02:32:07 PM »

Top row of keyboard text when received without the shift should be the numeral above that letter to left on the keyboard with the shift.  So, if you receive TOO YUI as the exchange, the shifted translation is 599 678.  And so forth...

And I log the exchange assuming the shift was missed. 
« Last Edit: May 12, 2014, 03:19:46 PM by K0YQ » Logged
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