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Author Topic: What signal report do I put on qsl card?  (Read 3695 times)
N4CR
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Posts: 1666




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« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2013, 03:47:17 PM »

Your ears should tell you what report to give them. Not your S meter. If it means anything readability could be 59 with no S meter reading at all if they are will above the noise and perfectly readable.

Such nonsense coupling signal reports to an S meter that's different every radio, every coax and every antenna. Meaningless.

The signal report is Readability and Strength and Tone if you wish. How can one hear the strength of a signal if this is clearly only a measurement of the field strength? For me it is interesting to see how strong my signal is being received. I know it is not a perfect measurement but a good indication anyway. It does not hurt to read the S-meter.

While it doesn't hurt, it also doesn't help. It literally doesn't mean a thing to a guy 5000 miles away while a true rendition of (R)eadability and (T)one does.

I can get an S9 signal and my neighbor can see that same signal at the same time on a different antenna, coax and rig as either S4 or S9+20. If the guy at the other end doesn't know this, none of it means a thing because the two of us are not calibrated against any kind of standard.

What brand is your radio? Does S9 = a 50 microvolt signal? Did you have your preamp on? Was it on +10 or +20? Was your attenuator on? Is it -6 or -10? Is your antenna a broomstick in your basement or is it a monobander at 100 feet? Which way was your beam pointed? Where are the nulls on your wire antenna? Was that long path or short path? Is your noise level S9+5?

Your S meter is just an insignificant instantaneous pointer for YOU to tell the difference of things. It means absolutely nothing to the guy on the other end because there's no way for him to make sense of it or to compare it to anything purely because of all the variables the guy on the other end cannot know.

Which why we send 59 instead of 599. The S part gets left out.

Readability and Tone. 59 or 22. Your S meter is worse than a liar. There's no truth because there's no reference to compare it to unless you figure out which stations have conditions exactly like yours. Which is pretty much none.

If you have to look at your S meter to determine strength, then perhaps it's time to stop looking at it and practice reality for a while. Put some tape over your S meter for a month and train your brain instead of using some meaningless crutch.

As far as sending QSL cards, if you didn't exchange the signal report, why would you lie about it on the card? It's not proof of anything. If I didn't exchange it, I'd leave it blank. It's about the same kind of information as 59 except without the lie.
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73 de N4CR, Phil

We are Coulomb of Borg. Resistance is futile. Voltage, on the other hand, has potential.
W8JX
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Posts: 5784




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« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2013, 04:56:03 PM »

I can get an S9 signal and my neighbor can see that same signal at the same time on a different antenna, coax and rig as either S4 or S9+20. If the guy at the other end doesn't know this, none of it means a thing because the two of us are not calibrated against any kind of standard.

And your point is?Huh   Again it does not matter what your neighbor or friend's rig says. The report is for your equipment. Calibrated or not it is far more consistent and repeatable and able to compare to other signals at your location than your ear.
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N4CR
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Posts: 1666




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« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2013, 05:09:06 PM »

And your point is?Huh   Again it does not matter what your neighbor or friend's rig says. The report is for your equipment. Calibrated or not it is far more consistent and repeatable and able to compare to other signals at your location than your ear.

Hey, I agree with  you. It means everything to you.

It just means little to the guy at the other end. And the more he knows, the less it means.

They way most people send signal reports, it doesn't mean "This how good your signal is", it means "This how good my setup is".

What does he care? He wants to know how good his signal is.

If we all had s/n meters, we'd read about the same in the same vicinity given an equal noise floor. But S meters have nothing to do with s/n and that's what he really wants to know.

You can, however, evaluate that with your ears.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2013, 05:18:41 PM by N4CR » Logged

73 de N4CR, Phil

We are Coulomb of Borg. Resistance is futile. Voltage, on the other hand, has potential.
N7SMI
Member

Posts: 332




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« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2013, 11:19:16 AM »

If no signal report was given during the contact, I wasn't sure what to put on the card, was afraid if I didn't put something in, the card might not be accepted for any award(s) the person receiving it might be applying for.

Signal report is not a factor in determining a valid QSL. All that is necessary is matching call sign, mode, date/time (typically within 30 minutes), and band.
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N6AJR
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Posts: 9908




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« Reply #19 on: January 15, 2013, 12:48:05 PM »

Actually most listing nets only require one piece of "unknown data to call it a contact. so "I hear you22, 22, 22 rifle shot, bang bang , 22... and the other guys says 22 ? and net controls says good contact. All you need for a contact in most cases is that one piece of unknown stuff.  BUT most folks will want a call, some type of RST and a name or something.  in a contest the rules spell out a valid contact for that contest., like call rst and a serial number, or call rst and name and state , or name, call and year first licensed.  so yea  there is no fixed "real" info needed, but it just depends.
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N4JTE
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Posts: 1155




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« Reply #20 on: January 15, 2013, 07:50:37 PM »

Dale, too many off topic answers, this contest is not about exchanging qsl cards or reports, save your cards, wrong contest for that, these guys are there to validate all the money they spent on equipment and antennas talking around the USA for this contest.
Bob
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NR4C
Member

Posts: 308




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« Reply #21 on: January 16, 2013, 07:30:10 AM »

If you plan to QSL a lot of contest QSO's, why not have a card printed with Date, Call, Time, Mode, Freq and EXCHange info instead of signal report?  Make sure the EXCH area is large enough for contests exchanges like Sweepstakes etc.

Or, you could use a card with a label, and just use a different label format for contests.

....bill  nr4c
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G8JNJ
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Posts: 492


WWW

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« Reply #22 on: January 16, 2013, 07:50:54 AM »

Hi All,

Personally in these days of SDR's. I'd prefer to know my signal level in dBm and the Signal to Noise ratio in dB at the receiver  Smiley

I think it's useful to give this additional information during QSO's if possible.

However until this becomes more common place. Web SDR's and the reverse beacon network remain very useful tools, for propagation and antenna experiments.

Regards,

Martin - G8JNJ

www.g8jnj.webs.com
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W8JX
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Posts: 5784




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« Reply #23 on: January 16, 2013, 01:24:47 PM »


Personally in these days of SDR's. I'd prefer to know my signal level in dBm and the Signal to Noise ratio in dB at the receiver  Smiley

I think it's useful to give this additional information during QSO's if possible.


The problem with this is that this is highly subjective due to software and hardware used to calculate it making it no better than a S meter most of the time.
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