Any Hams in the Evansville Area?

lviper

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Are there any hams in the Evansville area? I'm looking in to a new digital ht and can't decide between either a c4fm fusion or dmr. I've noticed a lot more fusion repeaters than dmr so I was leaning that way but I really like the Anytone at-d878uv over the Yaesu ft-70dr.

I have a rtl-sdr setup with dsdplus-fl listening to local repeaters but I'm not hearing much traffic. So I was hoping maybe there were some local hams here that can tell me who is doing what where to help me decide.
 

trido

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Ed, may post info also.As far as DMR the bad thing for some the local DMR rpt is far east side of county Height 100 ft I think
So near Highway 41 just cant hear it on an HT.
I am sure Yaesu fusion has way way better coverage.
Jeff

Are there any hams in the Evansville area? I'm looking in to a new digital ht and can't decide between either a c4fm fusion or dmr. I've noticed a lot more fusion repeaters than dmr so I was leaning that way but I really like the Anytone at-d878uv over the Yaesu ft-70dr.

I have a rtl-sdr setup with dsdplus-fl listening to local repeaters but I'm not hearing much traffic. So I was hoping maybe there were some local hams here that can tell me who is doing what where to help me decide.
 

eaf1956

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I have fusion radios somewhere.... The repeaters are .......crickets...... The local Brandmiester DMR reapeater is ........Circkets....

Lately I've gotten a Open Spot2 and on the TGIF network with a MD 380 DMR radio
 

lviper

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I have fusion radios somewhere.... The repeaters are .......crickets...... The local Brandmiester DMR reapeater is ........Circkets....

Lately I've gotten a Open Spot2 and on the TGIF network with a MD 380 DMR radio
"Crickets" huh? That's what I was wondering. I figured I would do a pi-star so guess I'll go with the anytone 878 since I like the geek factor it has.

Thanks
 

hill

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Most repeater traffic would be around daily commute times, but please see my comments below.

This may not be a good time to listen to ham repeaters. I know in my area many that used to have people on them have been super quiet during the stay at home order and people working from home. The other hams is used to talk with the repeaters during drive time are at home.
 

Hit_Factor

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Are there any hams in the Evansville area? I'm looking in to a new digital ht and can't decide between either a c4fm fusion or dmr. I've noticed a lot more fusion repeaters than dmr so I was leaning that way but I really like the Anytone at-d878uv over the Yaesu ft-70dr.

I have a rtl-sdr setup with dsdplus-fl listening to local repeaters but I'm not hearing much traffic. So I was hoping maybe there were some local hams here that can tell me who is doing what where to help me decide.
You probably need both a DMR and a Fusion radio. HTs may not have enough power to work well, finding some local ham would be a big help.

Both DMR and Fusion work well with a hotspot running PiStar. You will find lot's of traffic on a hotspot. I'm not familiar with your SDR, if it does DMR and Fusion then it will be able to monitor the hotspot. PiStar also supports DStar and a few other digital protocols.

The repeater council indicates 4 fusion repeaters and two DMR. Hard to say what's actually in use.

Here is the FCC search for Amateur Radio License holders. https://wireless2.fcc.gov/UlsApp/UlsSearch/searchAmateur.jsp, browse the list, maybe you know someone.

Here is a local ham website. Looks like they have lot's of good info posted. Tri-State Area Repeaters
 

lviper

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Most repeater traffic would be around daily commute times, but please see my comments below.

This may not be a good time to listen to ham repeaters. I know in my area many that used to have people on them have been super quiet during the stay at home order and people working from home. The other hams is used to talk with the repeaters during drive time are at home.
I didn't think to consider the stay at home order. I've been listening with my old ic-t90a during my commute and haven't heard anything. Suppose the stay at home order could be why.

I've had my ticket for 15 years but haven't been on the air for almost as long. Life got in the way but felt like getting back to it. That's when I bought a new battery for the old icom and started to monitor local repeaters but heard nothing. So I started to investigate and discovered digital. Hence my questions.

Thanks for the insight.
 

eaf1956

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The Evansville DMR repeater is so low profile that I have difficulty with it from a 50 W mobile. The Owensboro DMR repeater is a lot better but further away. There is a HAM in Henderson who somehow uses both those repeaters with his HT. He must be in a sweet spot. LOL I haven't had my Fusion radios on for a while so I don't know how Mike's Fusion repeater is doing. A lot of repeaters owners who took advantage of Yaesu's offer have their repeaters in analog mode. That being said, you will probably get more use out of a DMR radio albeit with current plans on TGIF and hot spots it won't make a whole lot of difference.
 

lviper

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That being said, you will probably get more use out of a DMR radio albeit with current plans on TGIF and hot spots it won't make a whole lot of difference.
Please excuse my lack of knowledge, but what is TGIF and current plans?
 

eaf1956

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TGIF is a Service like Brandmeister they meaning TGIF are adding new servers and upgrading their system. From what I understand the servers will handle all conversion from different Digital formats so they can all be used on the same platform ie FUSION DMR P25 NXDN D Star
 

dwh367

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I'm in Owensboro and have a DMR radio with which I can access our local Brandmeister connected repeater. That being said I primarily operate DMR using a Pi-Star based hotspot. Like eaf1956 I tend to call the TGIF network home.

I did set up my hotspot today to transcode DMR to YSF and talked into Evansville on Indiana Link South. I can also transcode DMR to NXDN and P25.

If you're interested in digital radio I would consider getting a hotspot as well. That way you're not restricted to just one mode or network. You have full control of where you want to go.
 

lviper

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So it appears that the best way to get into digital is with my own hotspot. Once I do that then the actual radio doesn't seem to be the most important choice. It seems the digital playground is the first choice. Then get your rig, connect to your hotspot and access all the playgrounds through gateways.

I'm not sure if gatways is the correct term, but it seems whether it's brandmeister, tgif, ysf or the other digital formats, you can somehow access one another through a hotspot. I'll have to read up some more on that. However, can that happen with just the one radio? Meaning if I have a dmr radio, can I access the fusion network through a hotspot so long as the dmr network of choice has a link to the fusion network?
 

Hit_Factor

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So it appears that the best way to get into digital is with my own hotspot.

Once I do that then the actual radio doesn't seem to be the most important choice.
Yes.

Not exactly, sometimes you need the vocoder built into the radio to encode/decode the signal. I think DStar would fall into this category. PiStar does some transcoding, it changes the data wrapper around a specific digital format. @dwh367 talks about transcoding back in post #13.
 

lviper

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Yes.

Not exactly, sometimes you need the vocoder built into the radio to encode/decode the signal. I think DStar would fall into this category. PiStar does some transcoding, it changes the data wrapper around a specific digital format. @dwh367 talks about transcoding back in post #13.
What I meant about the radio not being the most important choice is in relation to the form of digital. Dmr over fusion or the others. I have read a little about the vocoder part but haven't put all the pieces together yet. I certainly need to do more homework.

I have been leaning towards the anytone at-d878uv and a pi-star. But I'm bad about judging a book by its cover and the anytone has a nice cover.
 

Hit_Factor

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What I meant about the radio not being the most important choice is in relation to the form of digital. Dmr over fusion or the others. I have read a little about the vocoder part but haven't put all the pieces together yet. I certainly need to do more homework.

I have been leaning towards the anytone at-d878uv and a pi-star. But I'm bad about judging a book by its cover and the anytone has a nice cover.
Sounds like you are on the right track.

I think DStar uses an older vocoder, whereas DMR, Fusion, and P25 may use the same vocoder, but the wrapper (metadata?) is different. The other thing is not all hotspots are the same. A wide range of Raspberry Pi based hotspots can run PiStar. I think the relatively new OpenSpot 3 has transcoding capabilities. So read the fine print.

I could be wrong on this, but the PiStar/Raspberry Pi allows a bunch of tinkering if you are into that. The OpenSpot 3 on the other hand is plug and play, minimal setup required.

The anytone has pretty good reviews. I have had MD380, MD390 and while inexpensive - they are junk. I have a couple Hytera PD872G HT's and they remind me of the Motorola radios I carried as a cop, top tier equipment. You can always sell the anytone in the classifieds if you are not happy with it. Consider the loss as tuition for what you learned, not a failure.
 

lviper

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I could be wrong on this, but the PiStar/Raspberry Pi allows a bunch of tinkering if you are into that. The OpenSpot 3 on the other hand is plug and play, minimal setup required.

You can always sell the anytone in the classifieds if you are not happy with it. Consider the loss as tuition for what you learned, not a failure.
I figured I would go the pi-star route since I have a spare rpi3b+ just begging for a project. Also the investment is less to get my feet wet.

As for the radio choice, I could go cheaper but I don't want a cheap radio to discourage me. So I figured a middle of the road would be a better choice. Plus all the good reviews help.

I do like to tinker. It helps me learn.
 

lviper

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Just wanted to again say thanks for the info and to give an update. I have purchased the Anytone D878UV and built a mmdvm hotspot. I also have the hotspot working on both brandmeister and tgif. I tried the local tars dmr repeater but it appears to be offline. Max is looking in to it.

Now I figured since it was here that steered me towards tgif, I figured I would ask where everyone is hanging out. What are some good talk groups to check out?
 
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