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eHam Forums => Station Building => Topic started by: K3MQ on May 12, 2013, 08:32:07 PM



Title: Low cost minimalistic digital station
Post by: K3MQ on May 12, 2013, 08:32:07 PM
I've gotten burned out doing the high power contest running SO2R multi-antenna qsl swapping dx award chasing ham radio thing. I'm selling almost everything, pay off some bills, and starting over. I want to set up a VERY basic station just to operate low power digital modes like Olivia, DominoEX, JT65, etc. The more exotic the better. If it doesn't require a interface software such as Digipan, FLDigi, or Hamscope, I don't want it. Even PSK31 is too generic plus the Europeans drive you crazy with qsl card requests. Quality & uniqueness of qsos trumps quantity.

What I WANT is a software defined radio like the KX3 or Flex-1500, but they are WAY out of my price range. I just need a good basic rig at a low price that I can interface with for digital modes. Power is not critical although I don't want to be limited to qrp and definitely do not want a kit built in an altoids can. Receiver sensitivity would seem to be paramount. Rigs such as the IC-718 & IC-746 come to mind, but these are still $500 radios used. Any suggestions for a real low cost semi-modern CHEAP rig well suited for digital work?   Thanks!


Title: RE: Low cost minimalistic digital station
Post by: AD9DX on May 13, 2013, 08:43:20 AM
Elecraft K2s can be found relatively inexpensively. They are solid rigs and will suit you for a long time. And if you get the bug to work with 100w again, you can always buy that module. If I was doing what you are doing, the K2 would fit the bill nicely.


Title: RE: Low cost minimalistic digital station
Post by: LA9XNA on May 29, 2013, 02:05:29 PM
If you want a modern cheep to run digital on i would recommend having a look at the Icom Ic-7200.
You get allot of radio for your money and the rig is perfect for digimodes because of the USB in the back that combines sound card and CAT.


Title: RE: Low cost minimalistic digital station
Post by: NA0AA on May 30, 2013, 10:03:38 AM
Back when I was doing digital modes, I wanted a dedicated radio, I used an IC-735 for PSK and it was just fine - I cranked the power down to 30 watts or so, plenty for PSK.  You can probably get one of those for $300.