Discussion in 'Digital Modes' started by wedgar, Mar 13, 2016.

  1. wedgar

    wedgar Administrator Staff Member Gold Member

    How is D-Star doing in your area?

    Back home, there is little in the way of D-Star resources, but we're in the Allegheny National Forest.

    Are more people in larger population areas getting involved with it?
  2. W.T. Jones

    W.T. Jones Moderator Staff Member Silver Member Golden GPS Recipient

    Nothing D-Star in Northeast PA. Some Fusion and DMR but that is it.
    wedgar likes this.
  3. wedgar

    wedgar Administrator Staff Member Gold Member

    Any talk of people putting D-Star repeaters up?
    W.T. Jones likes this.
  4. W.T. Jones

    W.T. Jones Moderator Staff Member Silver Member Golden GPS Recipient

    Nothing that I have heard. Primary reason is the infrastructure (i.e. Internet) at the sites.

    I did do some checking and the Lehigh Valley now has 2 D-Star repeaters and 4 Fusion Repeaters.
    wedgar likes this.
  5. wedgar

    wedgar Administrator Staff Member Gold Member

    Wonder if something similar to a mesh network would permit the internet access to be at someone's home yet remotely give access to the repeater site "on the hill?"
  6. W.T. Jones

    W.T. Jones Moderator Staff Member Silver Member Golden GPS Recipient

    Nice thought but MESH hasn't even gained the traction that digital voice has. Too much for the average repeater owner who is strapped for resources. In places where MESH has been done in NEPA the findings are dismal because of the environment. Trees and hills just don't make the cut. The Susquehanna Group is finding that out. Down south (in the flat lands) there has been better success with MESH.

    From an emergency communications stand point I can't recommend nor endorse anything that relies on a land based network infrastructure. If it will work all by its lonesome then it is better in the long run.

    For sites that would have to share the bandwidth with their hosts it could become problematic. During a situation where the host needs the bandwidth for their own usages any heavy traffic from the hams would become unwelcome in a hurry.

    And in some of the locations where our repeaters are located it is a situation where the network is a private network for security reasons. That means nothing but the primary users on it. Last time I checked having Comcast out a drop in to the site is not all the cheap.

    Given the MESH network and its infancy I cannot see that being any kind of a solution. I know from very recent experience that even with commercial networking equipment the distance that was covered between the nodes was nothing shy of dismal (read that as 750ft) and was not reliable enough even support simple network requirements based on standard protocols like telnet and ftp. With the network in some what of a quiet state the network traffic from the windows systems was enough to peak at 60%+ on the connected nodes. Give me some flat land and good towers and it might be workable.
    wedgar likes this.
  7. wedgar

    wedgar Administrator Staff Member Gold Member

    Good point on the land based network structure.

    Having the cable company drop internet connection to a repeater site just sounds super expensive.
  8. Jeremy

    Jeremy Active Member

    Another big hurdle in NEPA is the idea that D-Star or Fusion are both limited by manufacturer and that doesn't sit well with people around here. While this fact isn't exactly true, the impression remains strong.

    Another way to get wireless to a repeater site is using a cellphone hot spot device. This can get the data link to the remote site, but may be costly depending on traffic trough the repeater. As WT mentions, this also relies on easily disrupted mobile phone service, so wouldn't be a great idea for emergencies, but would be good for routine communications.

    Jeremy N1ZZZ
    wedgar likes this.
  9. wedgar

    wedgar Administrator Staff Member Gold Member

    Yep - the appearance isn't good for major acceptance.

    Wonder if a wi-fi link on UHF frequencies might work like a packet link for getting wireless to a repeater site?
  10. Jeremy

    Jeremy Active Member

    Well NW has a unit in production that would do something along the lines your are talking about; it is designed to move data on 70cm at a fairly fast clip. I think that regular packet might not be the way to go, but another modulation scheme would work. That is still fairly line of sight, but could be done. I am just not sure if the bandwidth would be sufficient for VoIP.
    wedgar likes this.
  11. wedgar

    wedgar Administrator Staff Member Gold Member

    Hmm.... Have to check that out.

    I'm not certain what bandwidth is needed for VoIP either...
  12. David Kleber - KB3FXI

    David Kleber - KB3FXI Moderator Staff Member

    Try the 8PSK modes in NBEMS/FLDIGI on 70cm. I've heard from some folks that are having good success with hauling pretty large amounts of data and it doesn't require anything other than a laptop, the free NBEMS software, a sound card interface (recommended but not necessary) and any old analog rigs and/or repeaters that are all readily available.

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