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Old 01-27-2012, 12:23 PM   #1
W5DOK
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Default D-star anyone?

I just bought an Icom ID-880 and thought I would try to get on dstar. Boy, is that ever a can of worms to program. Still haven't got it working. I have the programming software and it's no problem to plug in 2m and 70cm, but dstar is a whole new problem. If anybody has a magic solution, I'm all ears.
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Old 01-28-2012, 04:55 AM   #2
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That's one of the reasons I haven't gone to D-Star. Also, it doesn't provide enough value for the money.



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Old 01-30-2012, 07:59 AM   #3
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Well ,, here I go sticking my foot in again.
D-Star, DMR-MARC, and other "DIGITAL" protocol network's are nice and they do work (most of the time) but seem to have at least two big draw back's.
1. They are "PROPRIETARY" , D-Star is "ICOM" only, DMR-MARC is almost exclusively MOTOROLA, not cross platform or cross brand (I think Yaesu is working on something also) .
2. $$$$ Big buck's for the compatible equipment which means that those of us on fixed budgets have to do some figuring on what to do with-out to buy a radio to work which ever system.

They all have their good points and not so good points,,, BUT I feel that the main thing is the cross-brand / cross-protocol compatibility issue,,,, untill there is is an open source standard that is affordable to everyone (or reasonably so) your stuck being "ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE" .
Some years ago "AOR" came out with an add-on box but I haven't heard much of it lately and a add-on box for hand held users would be a "PITA" to say the least.
GO FIGURE !
I'm not saying the concept isn't good, just not something universally practical at the moment.
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Old 01-30-2012, 09:03 AM   #4
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My Icom IC2200h is D-star compatible, but at $200 bucks for the module (more than the radio), I have decided that D-star will have to wait. I have seen several live demos of it. Impressive but to much for my blood and budget at this time...Something about music lessons, braces, etc. etc. etc. (does it ever end???) Maybe when the girls get married!
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Old 01-30-2012, 09:04 AM   #5
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Oh wait...maybe I can get the girls to buy a D-star machine and just use theirs!!!
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Old 01-30-2012, 03:10 PM   #6
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Now why didn't I think of that?
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:38 AM   #7
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D-Star is interesting.. I can not afford a D-Star radio however there is a way to do it for less.. You can get a D-Star USB dongle for your computer. it connects to the internet, and logs into the D-Star network that way.

Will I.. Well, not likely this year.
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:39 PM   #8
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I looked at D-Star and decided that the cost out-weighted any benefits.

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Old 08-16-2014, 02:22 PM   #9
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I would put D-Star in the same category as WIRES - YAESU.
D-Star was a idea devised by ICOM to sell more radios by incorporating a type of digital mode.
The only problem with D-Star is that amateurs do not have a lack of frequencies and we don't need to reduce the bandwidth of our signals.

The other problem with D-Star is that you loose range due to the fact that it is digital and digital is all or nothing. Either you have crystal clear audio or you have drops outs. At least with analog - as long as you can hear the other person you can work them..

The New Yaesu's has their share of problems also - but we put up a couple of new Yaesu repeaters, but there is no word on when they will find a solution to the fact that they won't talk to D-Star radios while in digital mode.
In analog mode, the repeater seems to be fairly sensitive and in digital you have better capture effect.
The new Yaesu radios are very expensive - I guess they will come down in price once the market is saturated.
The digital side is secure for now since it is not P-25, you cannot listen to it with a digital scanner.

Because it is both analog and digital, you can use either radio with the Yaesu repeaters.....
My guess is that once the Yaesu system catches on, the ICOM stuff will go away or get better. D-Star will die a slow death...
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Old 08-16-2014, 06:19 PM   #10
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I would put D-Star in the same category as WIRES - YAESU.
D-Star was a idea devised by ICOM to sell more radios by incorporating a type of digital mode.
The only problem with D-Star is that amateurs do not have a lack of frequencies and we don't need to reduce the bandwidth of our signals.

The other problem with D-Star is that you loose range due to the fact that it is digital and digital is all or nothing. Either you have crystal clear audio or you have drops outs. At least with analog - as long as you can hear the other person you can work them..

The New Yaesu's has their share of problems also - but we put up a couple of new Yaesu repeaters, but there is no word on when they will find a solution to the fact that they won't talk to D-Star radios while in digital mode.
In analog mode, the repeater seems to be fairly sensitive and in digital you have better capture effect.
The new Yaesu radios are very expensive - I guess they will come down in price once the market is saturated.
The digital side is secure for now since it is not P-25, you cannot listen to it with a digital scanner.

Because it is both analog and digital, you can use either radio with the Yaesu repeaters.....
My guess is that once the Yaesu system catches on, the ICOM stuff will go away or get better. D-Star will die a slow death...
I agree with that the Dstar is a vocoder system so every thing you buy D star you are buying the licence for the system. The Yeasu is C4FM a standard digital voice mode. The Icom Dstar radios are pretty pricey too. The Icom repeaters are twice as much as the Yeasu's. Our ARC was given a Yeasu repeater system by Yeasu a hand held and a mobile radio I set up the repeater and so far my only complaint is the lack of controller functions with the internal controller being hams we are too cheap to buy an external controller Yaesu has told me that "they are working on that" so maybe a new flash will come a long soon. The digital voice is out standing and the analog voice is top notch also. The repeater deals with all 4 modes seamlessly so no one is left out.
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Old 08-16-2014, 07:39 PM   #11
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Quote:
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D-Star was [an] idea devised by ICOM
No; D-Star was devised by the Japan Amateur Radio League (JARL) and is available to any manufacturer, but so far requires a proprietary chip marketed by a company from which ICOM buys it. Apparently ICOM is the only Amateur Radio supplier buying this chip, but I think I have read that some manufacturers of non-amateur equipment are using it in commercial and government services.
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Old 08-17-2014, 04:00 AM   #12
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W9WLS has a very valid point, I happen to be anti-PROPRIETARY modes on ham radio.

There are a couple of internet TV shows, Amaterlogic.tv and Ham Nation (twit.tv/hn)

From time to time some of the episodes have demonstarted the ICOM radios (ICOM sponsors) and have shown how to program the D-Star. Should be more or less automatic.
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Old 08-17-2014, 08:21 AM   #13
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No; D-Star was devised by the Japan Amateur Radio League (JARL) and is available to any manufacturer, but so far requires a proprietary chip marketed by a company from which ICOM buys it. Apparently ICOM is the only Amateur Radio supplier buying this chip, but I think I have read that some manufacturers of non-amateur equipment are using it in commercial and government services.
Alinco uses it also. The vocoder system is a licensed system from DVSI it is used in many sound devices, sat phones, PS radios ham gear. There are open source chips out there but so far they are lagging behind. Me I'll stick with a simple FM digital if I ever venture into that mode. My thought is the vocoder system is a type of encryption that really does not fit the ideal of non-encryption in ham radio if the source was free than anyone could decode it but as it stands you have to own a radio that is capable.
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Old 08-17-2014, 09:24 AM   #14
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Alinco uses it also. The vocoder system is a licensed system from DVSI it is used in many sound devices, sat phones, PS radios ham gear. There are open source chips out there but so far they are lagging behind.
Ah so. Didn't know any of that!
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Old 08-17-2014, 10:51 PM   #15
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ICOM will still give you a free repeater if you ask them..
The reason behind the offer is because they can sell more radios by having more repeaters on the air.

Yaesu is still giving away free repeaters - and yes, you should use a external controller. You can buy a Dongle for the repeater for less than $100.00
If you factor in the price of the new free repeater, spending $100 for a controller is a very cheap way of putting up a new repeater.

And, getting the handheld - about $400 and the mobile - about $650 for free is like having someone pay you to play amateur radio.

The problem we are having with the one repeater is either desense or that the repeater is going into oscillations.. It is transmitting in analog and then it is running away in digital. Then again, the owner was in such a big hurry to get it on the air, he doesn't fully understand the manual or the controls yet.

I need to put the cans on the service monitor and check the notch to make sure that the frequency in the duplexers has not shifted.

We had two Motorola Mitrex mobiles before that for repeater radios, one on the air and one as a spare.

I am in the process of putting up a 55' tower for the Diamond X 500 antenna. The elevation at the site is 2400' amsl and the average terrain is only 1400' in town. So it is a lot like having a 1000' tower to begin with.

Presently the Diamond antenna is atop a 40' pipe on the guys back porch.
He is disabled and can't do much on his own, and his pension doesn't cover his expenses.

When lightning struck his old repeater, the repeater council took his coordination away and gave it to another club 50 miles away, just across the state line.. The new repeater in New York is connected to the Wide Area Netwerk so there is a lot of chatter on there, so maybe the desense is being caused by heterodyning. There is no PL on the repeater...
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Old 08-18-2014, 06:51 PM   #16
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The old Micor I built in 96 is still in the cabinet just in case! I too am having some desense problems I have not been up on the Mt. yet with some gear but other than that it seem to be quite sensitive and very nice analog audio. We have 4 cans and a notch and all kinds of neighbors, two pagers, microwave gear and some 150 meg stuff. Ours is working quite well in auto mode I wonder if yours is in “fixed” mode? I does switch quite nicely from analog to digital. The controller I can live with I did find out how to disable it so I’m happy with that but beyond that there is not a lot you can do from away. Yaesu has assured me that they are “working on it” so we’ll see what happens. Some have said that they lost the finals but no real facts I left it on 50 watts 20 wasn't going to do it so if it quits back to the old Micor!
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Old 08-18-2014, 07:25 PM   #17
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You might sneak a peek at those pagers to see whether they have (terminated) circulators on them. If not, they likely are mixing and retransmitting signals from each other. Many pagers are really dirty that way and put out intermod products that desense the world.
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Old 08-18-2014, 07:40 PM   #18
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Pagers? People still use pagers?

Now I don't feel so bad about keeping paper logs...
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Old 08-19-2014, 05:05 AM   #19
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D-Star has a few advantages over analog FM but .. Well.. Cost/Benefits is still too high, And I am anti-closed source stuff (Only I-COM makes D-Star radios) When it comes to say a 2-meter FM rig, there are dozens of them out there, You can even buy a box of parts and brew your own. But not so D-Star.

Now to the O/P who it seems had issues proramming his new toy (If you do not want it, send it to me, I'll take it, can't pay for it but Ill be your "Trash Can" )

There are some videos on You Tube that show you how to program it, they feature George Thomas (Amaturlogic.tv and ham nation) and Ray from icom.
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Old 08-19-2014, 08:06 AM   #20
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You might sneak a peek at those pagers to see whether they have (terminated) circulators on them. If not, they likely are mixing and retransmitting signals from each other. Many pagers are really dirty that way and put out intermod products that desense the world.
Yeah we have been up there twice with them and what ever is mixing is intermittent and of course won't do it while we are there. Most is 800 meg stuff so that really should not bother however they decided that our 4"X4" 20' tower was a good place to mount their dish and TX antenna about 3' from the bottom of the Station Master. There is some strange stuff up there the MT. Washington Observatory has weather gear that TX data to the top of Mt. Washington and 2.4 gig tx/rx. A good friend of mine (W1IMD) is also know as Mr Intermod so on the next trip I'll see if I can drag him along.
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