What's the "most interesting" thing you have heard lately on non-ham HF SSB?

KB2GOM

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upstate New York
HF SSB is alive & well. In general, the most "interesting" non-ham SSB doesn't last very long (like mere seconds). The less interesting, the longer it runs.

Aircraft LDOC (flying over ocean regions) can readily be found - but in general isn't exciting until some plane has a problem of some sort. English is the common language for aviation communications everywhere (almost).

Depending on how many languages you are proficient in, the more interesting voice SSB transmissions you might be able to log.
A spectrum / waterfall display is of great help in catching active frequencies. You get that with any SDR.
Frequencies? Try any range between a ham band and an 'international broadcast' band, e.g. 7.5 - 9 MHz. Or you could narrow your search by looking into one service at a time.

Be patient. You'll find interesting stuff.
Thanks for the encouragement.
 

majoco

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I see you are in upstate New York - there a heap to listen to on the north Atlantic Aero ATC frequencies - not LDOC. The Major World Area Routes, MWARA. Here's a full worldwide list but you would be more interested in the NAT-A to NAT-D frequencies from Gander, Shannon and others on those routes. NAT-D sometimes has some exciting stuff in the evenings from routes across the pole from East Asia. The higher frequencies say the 13MHz ones are best during the day and they drop down to the 8MHz and 5MHz bands in the evening. New York Radio looks after the Caribbean and mid-Atantic. Here's a chart of the routes.

 

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ridgescan

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Apr 1, 2008
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San Francisco, Ca.
HF SSB is alive & well. In general, the most "interesting" non-ham SSB doesn't last very long (like mere seconds). The less interesting, the longer it runs.

Aircraft LDOC (flying over ocean regions) can readily be found - but in general isn't exciting until some plane has a problem of some sort. English is the common language for aviation communications everywhere (almost).

Depending on how many languages you are proficient in, the more interesting voice SSB transmissions you might be able to log.
A spectrum / waterfall display is of great help in catching active frequencies. You get that with any SDR.
Frequencies? Try any range between a ham band and an 'international broadcast' band, e.g. 7.5 - 9 MHz. Or you could narrow your search by looking into one service at a time.

Be patient. You'll find interesting stuff.
Yeah good point! Just for fun I usually spin by 8891kHz just to check how well I copy New York Radio from here in San Francisco. I can even faintly catch replying ACs depending upon propagation which to me is pretty amazing.
Funny thing is, often times I can copy New York clearer than I can San Francisco ATC on 8843 which I'm pretty sure transmits from around Dixon, Ca. about 80 miles from me. Perplexing.
 

Token

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Be patient. You'll find interesting stuff.
And that is the key there, patience. The really interesting stuff, generally, is not on a specific frequency at a specific time. You have to be tuned to the right frequency at the right time to hear the "good stuff". Certainly, by regularly tuning certain services you can increase the probability of being in that right place at that right time, but no one can really tell you "tune to frequency XXXXX kHz at YYYY UTC and you will hear stuff that will blow your mind".

You need to learn propagation, what frequency ranges can you expect to bring you traffic from what direction at what time? You need to become familiar with what signals are normally out there, so that you can notice when something is uncommon. And SDRs are a real tool to be leveraged, the waterfall displays make it so easy, "oh, there is something short and not normally seen on the waterfall", click on it and find out what it is. Going back to a traditional receiver, without waterfall, is like losing a sense or a dimension, something is just missing form the experience.

T!
 

Boombox

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For me it would be the Indonesian 'village radio' chanters just below the 40 meter ham band, usually in LSB. I haven't heard them in several years, because of propagation, but in the early to mid 2010's I was hearing them almost every morning, usually 6999 khz, chanting away. What they'd do is one guy would record everyone chanting into their mics, and then he'd play it back. The stations, I believe, were (are) all in Kalimantan. Some of them would be lower than 6999, and every now and then they would be talking (and sometimes doing the chant thing) into the lower reaches of the 40 meter ham band, between 7000 and 7030 or so.
 

Token

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For me it would be the Indonesian 'village radio' chanters just below the 40 meter ham band, usually in LSB. I haven't heard them in several years, because of propagation, but in the early to mid 2010's I was hearing them almost every morning, usually 6999 khz, chanting away. What they'd do is one guy would record everyone chanting into their mics, and then he'd play it back. The stations, I believe, were (are) all in Kalimantan. Some of them would be lower than 6999, and every now and then they would be talking (and sometimes doing the chant thing) into the lower reaches of the 40 meter ham band, between 7000 and 7030 or so.
I hear the chanters pretty much every morning. Very often around 6995 kHz, but also a few other frequency ranges, such as up around 11430 kHz.

These guys are in boats (I assume fishing boats), you can sometimes hear the engines running in the background when they talk.

T!
 
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