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Author Topic: Stupid Question - Pitch of CW  (Read 651 times)
UBERNEWB
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Posts: 6




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« on: March 18, 2003, 08:27:06 PM »

Hi.  I'm using the Koch Method CW Trainer by G4FON in conjunction with the Koch Receiver by KB2QX to learn CW.  So far so good, I think I am progressing well.

This is my question... what should I set the pitch of the CW at to make this as effective an exercise as possible?  Should I vary the pitch?  If so, through what range?  I think it is capable of 350 through 1300.

By the way, if anyone is interested in learning CW you should check out these 2 programs... just use a search engine and you should be able to find them without any problems.
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VE7AOP
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2003, 11:56:54 PM »

Interesting that you should pose this question about pitch. And I don't think its a stupid question as I'll explain.  I am currently trying to get my speed up to 30wpm.  (using G4FON, W1AW and random on-air qso's) A month ago I was getting very frustrated that I could not differentiate s h and 5, and v's and 4, etc... anything with more then 2 dits.  The problem seems to be pitch.  If the pitch is over 800HZ I have this problem with long dit strings. Under 800 less so - 600HZ almost perfect. It was either my ears or the computer sound hardware.  But on air listening seemed to show the same results.  My recommendation - use 600HZ. I find 400 to 600HZ a comfortable range.  It would be interesting to know whether anyone else has observed this aural/pitch relation with increased CW speed.
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NI0C
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2003, 08:09:37 AM »

Not a stupid question at all. Good advice from VE7AOP.  In Chapter 2 of his book, "Low Band DXing," ON4UN reports that: "it is very tiring to listen to a beat note over 700 Hz for extended periods of time. Also, the ability of the normal ear to discriminate signals very close in frequency is best at low frequencies."  He also states that one low band DX'er (W0ZV) likes 250 Hz!  I've been experimenting with changing the pitch on my TS-850s (it is adjustable in 50 Hz increments).  My current preference is 600 Hz.

73 de Chuck  NI0C
     
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KB1FLR
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« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2003, 10:48:58 AM »

I agree that pitch is important. I also have difficulty differentiating certain characters at higher pitches. Interestingly, I also use 600hz.

73 de Rick, KB1FLR
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2003, 12:37:04 PM »

I prefer even lower than 600 Hz, and usually use about 450 to 500 Hz (personal preference, there is no standard).

However, the TX offset in many transceivers is pre-set to something that cannot be changed (especially in older transceivers), and is typically 700 Hz, so it wouldn't be a bad idea to get used to listening at that pitch.  

In rigs where the CW offset is fixed, as is the case with most rigs built prior to about 1987, you'll find that 600 or 700 Hz is the offset, so when you tune a station in to that pitch, you'll be "zero beat" (on the same frequency) with him.

WB2WIK/6
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UBERNEWB
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« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2003, 07:48:49 PM »

Great info everybody, thank you very much!  I'm going to stay with 600 to get my speed up.  Fiddling with the program for a bit after reading all you replies I find that 600 works well for me as far as "recognition" goes.  Right now that is most important I suppose, just to get these dits and dahs to make sense in my head!  Thanks again!

Dave


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N0IBY
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« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2003, 03:25:38 PM »

I tend to run towards the low side, also, probly around 400-500. For long runs i find that changing the pitch every 10 minutes or so (or less) helps also. I tend to start getting "drone syndrome" after a while and a new pitch helps my brain refocus. I've never worried much about TX offset, either. Everyone has RIT, let 'em use it Smiley
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N8UZE
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« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2003, 08:16:50 AM »

by N0IBY on March 20, 2003

"I tend to run towards the low side, also, probly around 400-500. For long runs i find that changing the pitch every 10 minutes or so (or less) helps also. I tend to start getting "drone syndrome" after a while and a new pitch helps my brain refocus. I've never worried much about TX offset, either. Everyone has RIT, let 'em use it Smiley"

Unfortunately, the person on the other end has no way to tell if you are running high or low on your transmit.  They will zero beat to the incoming signal.  If they don't get a response they will move on to someone else.  So it's really better for you to use either adjust the pitch on your radio or compensate with your RIT or XIT.


 
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N8UZE
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« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2003, 08:18:50 AM »

I find that I perfer the pitch on the high side (800 to 900). That may be due to the fact thay I am female though as women seem to prefer higher tones and hear them better than men do.  A higher percentage of men start losing their ability to hear the higher tones than women do as they age.
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