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Author Topic: Repeater Controller Question  (Read 9111 times)

Posts: 25

« on: July 01, 2012, 11:30:17 AM »

There is a repeater in town using the RC210 Repeater Controller ( and I had some questions about it - curious if anyone had any experience with this?  I know very little (read: near none) about repeater controllers, so I'm trying to brainstorm some things that I've heard/seen on other repeaters, and trying to see if we can introduce those features to this repeater.

Since I've started looking into it, I have found out that there is a computer application that can possibly simplify a lot of the programming vs. having to use DTMF codes which should be amazingly more simple.

So far my list of things that I'd like to integrate are as follows:

  • Tone Decoder (I think that's the term ... essentially allowing TSQ to be used on the listener's radio
  • Automatic announcement of a Net
  • A macro to link port 1 and port 2 (2m and 70cm repeaters) together
  • A seperate macro to link and take the tone off during emergencies (skywarn maybe?)
  • Announcement of the repeater, PL, etc.
  • Ability to broadcast the AR Newsline once a week at a specified time

Now from what I've started to gather is the last request may be a bit complicated.  One suggested (I think) using a rig blaster and just using the computer to broadcast this instead?  I guess at that point, I'd need to a macro to disable the time out on the repeater so it'd do it in whatever time blocks I needed for the broadcast?  How would all of that work?

Really, I'm just looking for ways to use this controller to it's fullest advantage.  If there's ways to link this repeater to another repeater outside of my direct control (one in a nearby city that does skywarn events?) that'd be really awesome too... Just looking for ideas.  What have you seen, what do you do, what do you like, etc.



Posts: 146

« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2012, 04:33:32 PM »

I'm not going to try and fry my brain on how to make all of this work but the RC-210 should be capable of doing about everything you mentioned. Back when I was in the repeater business several years ago I had an RC-210 and loved it. I had both my VHF & UHF repeater on the same controller and the linking and remote base capabilities were awesome. The down side of using a single controller for multiple machines is that if the controller goes then everything is off the air. The RC-210 has a lot of capabilities for a controller. Of course you'll have to add some external hardware here and there to make it all happen. Be prepared to spend a lot of time getting it all to work and to work right. Repeaters are a delicate and time consuming operation as wells as a big learning experience if you want it to work right. Good luck with the project.

Added note: The RC-210 is easy to program with the software and computer connected directly to the controller. The software takes a bit of getting used to. It has provisions for programming it over the air via the software sending DTMF tones but unless it has been improved I never had much luck trying to remote program it. Also requires a simple interface between the computer and radio.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2012, 04:37:01 PM by KJ4I » Logged

Posts: 99


« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2012, 07:47:50 PM »

If you want repeater users to be able to use Tone Squelch, you will need a tone ENCODER not DECODER.

I use Com-Spec TS64DS units. It will do both.

Posts: 885

« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2012, 07:39:53 AM »

Do yourself a favor and get an SCOM 7330.  If you're planning on linking and unlinking repeaters across the ports, the audio levels will change due to the improper design of cascaded audio amplifiers in the RC210.  If you set the audio levels for ports 1 and 2 independently, they will drop when you link port 1 and 2.

In the long run, the 7330 will cost less.  It comes assembled and tested, comes complete with audio delay circuits, has a serial port for programming (which I do over the internet with a Cyclades serial server), has a huge vocabulary for the internal voice, and on and on.

By the time you purchase an RC210, the delay board, and a rack mount box (which is extremely flimsy), you've spent more than an SCOM costs.

I've had an RC210 on the boneyard table for sale at hamfests for the past 2 years.  Nobody will even pick it up and look.

BTW, most of the radios you would use for building a repeater come with CTCSS encode and decode built in.  Why not take advantage of that?
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