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Author Topic: What is the obsession with "great audio" when transmitting?  (Read 22199 times)
W2MV
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Posts: 207




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« on: January 28, 2011, 06:30:49 AM »

There are microphones, audio frequency response tailoring devices, and many comments in posts related to having "great" or "broadcast quality" transmitted audio. What am I missing? The most  effective audio characteristic when working other stations, especially DX, is to have a relatively limited audio bandwidth, possibly using compression as well. I just don't understand the 20 Hz-20000 KHz mentality; the audio circuitry in ham rigs will restrict the frequency response anyway so who cares? Is it that some hams like to pretend that they are "broadcasting" to the world?
Why isn't the emphasis on the type of audio which will "get through" most effectively?
Yes, I know that some hams like AM and I can understand that, but those are not whom I'm talking about.
What is the interest for hams in microphones with a "DC to daylight" (in the audio sense) frequency responses, and transmit "audio equalizers", especially given that many modern rigs do have the ability to tailor transmitted frequency response?
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AA4PB
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Posts: 12684




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« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2011, 06:44:58 AM »

The IF filter in a modern SSB transmitter will intentionally limit the audio frequency response to about 300 - 3000 Hz. The filter response however is not perfect and the edges reduce the signal level gradually. Some use an equalizer to greatly increase the frequencies a little outside that range to the point that it makes it through the filter and broadens the bandwidth of the transmitted signal. If not taken to extreme it does make the signal sound a little more "hi fi" but like you say, that is usually not good for getting the message through under noisy conditions. To each his own, I guess. I think most of the people doing it are not doing it to break DX pile ups.

HF digital voice, while it has its issues, creates some really great sounding audio in my opinion. Maybe some of the "hi fi" guys should give that a try.
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WX7G
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Posts: 5920




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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2011, 07:02:08 AM »

The next step is to enroll in radio announcer school and have a "golden voice" like Ted Williams.
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KI4SDY
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Posts: 1452




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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2011, 07:06:29 AM »

I call it the Rush Limbaugh Syndrome. It is a compulsion, like many others we see that manifest in ham radio. However, sometimes these driven hobbyist invent advancements that are useful to the ham radio community as a whole. Voice processing is not all bad, within the parameters that produce improved intelligibility at the receiving end. Many manufacturers are now including such features in ham transceivers.  Wink

At the far end of this obsession, we see photos of high fidelity wizards with rows of Heil gold studio microphones and sound boards that dwarf the area taken by actual ham radio equipment. What these amateur "broadcasters" don't realize is that their efforts may be limiting their range and at the end of their now shorter coverage area, they still sound like static. Their money would have been better spent installing an improved antenna system!  Roll Eyes  

« Last Edit: January 28, 2011, 07:29:37 AM by KI4SDY » Logged
KE3WD
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Posts: 5694




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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2011, 07:40:41 AM »

So maybe their goals are not DX oriented. 

This is a *hobby* and as such, there are many paths that different individuals may desire to take in the pursuit of happiness. 

As long as it does not violate the rules and regs, I don't see a problem here, matter of fact there might even be something new and desirable come of it someday, something that conceivably could become the standard in future offshelf rigs and such. 

I cannot understand the inflexibility some exhibit over such trivial matters as this one.

Have FUN and 73
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KC8IUR
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Posts: 156




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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2011, 08:38:00 AM »

HF digital voice, while it has its issues, creates some really great sounding audio in my opinion. Maybe some of the "hi fi" guys should give that a try.


The demo audio of the AOR HF DV unit is really striking. It definitely piqued my interest.
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K2OWK
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Posts: 1039




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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2011, 02:36:53 PM »

The only requirement in ham radio audio is a clear easy to understand, with a maximum of 100% modulation. If your microphone and transmitter audio circuit meet these requirements you have no problem wheather you use AM, FM, SSB. The only time you might want to have HI FI audio is if you plan to use your Ham station to transmitt illeagle music. I use a 60 year old D-104 microphone with the original cartridge and amplified base with my modern Yaesu FT-450AT transceiver. I receive excellent audio reports on all modes of operation with this set up. I hear Hams asking for audio reports all the time. When I tell them there audio is fine they ask but how good is it. I hear you load and clear what else do you want to hear. This is Ham Radio not a commercial broadcast station and good clear audio is all you need.

73s
K2OWK
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W7ETA
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Posts: 2528




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« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2011, 03:10:54 PM »

Because it is there.
And they have FUN doing it.

A couple of decades ago, I stopped telling ops with the characteristic "High Fi" audio that something was wrong with their audio.

Best from Tucson
Bob
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20545




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« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2011, 04:00:56 PM »

The IF filter in a modern SSB transmitter will intentionally limit the audio frequency response to about 300 - 3000 Hz. The filter response however is not perfect and the edges reduce the signal level gradually.


That doesn't really apply to rigs that do all their modulation/demodulation using DSP, as many rigs do today.

I can set my upper and lower TX bandwidth limits, and overall bandwidth (resulting from that), to almost anything I want them to be and when they roll off, it's like throwing a switch.

I usually set "low" to 300 Hz, and "high" to 2700 Hz or 3000 Hz and have a resulting BW of 2.4 to 2.7 kHz.  But if I switch to AM and we have a clear frequency, I'll set "high" to 3900 Hz and have resulting 3.6 kHz BW.  It sounds way better.  But if the band's all jammed up with QRM, nobody will appreciate that. Wink
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NO2A
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Posts: 758




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« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2011, 04:20:29 PM »

Well,would you rather sound like a broadcast station or an airline pilot? ......................... Wink
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K2OWK
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Posts: 1039




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« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2011, 09:33:19 PM »

On the ham bands. An airline pilot. Good clear audio.

K2OWK
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K7KBN
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Posts: 2764




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« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2011, 08:45:01 AM »

If I wanted to sound like a broadcast station I'd get a job at a broadcast station.
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
KD8HMO
Member

Posts: 228




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« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2011, 11:03:47 AM »

I agree with the Rush Limbaugh syndrome. Some people are just facinated with shiny things...

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y127/delta5/microphone.jpg
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K1CJS
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Posts: 5879




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« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2011, 08:26:16 AM »

Simple and plain, it is that good audio is easier to hear and understand.  The hams that don't go overboard, that is they don't brag about how they have an 'X' microphone, a 'Y' equalizer and a 'Z' hookup, and are just trying to get the best audio out understand this.  The stock microphone made for a rig isn't the hands down best choice for some hams because of their voices, but it is for most hams most of the time.

Hams who, however, have to have 'braggin' rights' and just have to tell the person on the other end how many toys they have do it for just that purpose--to brag about how many toys they have.
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W3ML
Member

Posts: 166




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« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2011, 09:55:17 AM »

The IF filter in a modern SSB transmitter will intentionally limit the audio frequency response to about 300 - 3000 Hz. The filter response however is not perfect and the edges reduce the signal level gradually.


That doesn't really apply to rigs that do all their modulation/demodulation using DSP, as many rigs do today.

I can set my upper and lower TX bandwidth limits, and overall bandwidth (resulting from that), to almost anything I want them to be and when they roll off, it's like throwing a switch.

I usually set "low" to 300 Hz, and "high" to 2700 Hz or 3000 Hz and have a resulting BW of 2.4 to 2.7 kHz.  But if I switch to AM and we have a clear frequency, I'll set "high" to 3900 Hz and have resulting 3.6 kHz BW.  It sounds way better.  But if the band's all jammed up with QRM, nobody will appreciate that. Wink

If this true with these units, then why do most guys that use one splatter up and over 5 KHZ each way? 
There was one on 20 meters yesterday that was over 6 Khz and God forbid someone tell him that he is over-modulating.

John, W3ML
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