November 27, 2012: Bob Millard, KE6JI: Live keyboard-to-keyboard using PSK-31 and other digital modes

Since the development of software that makes it easy to interface radios with computers, the interest in using these modes has been growing. The most popular mode is PSK-31. At the meeting this month you will see a live demonstration of the software and hardware used to make digital QSOs, including the popular software called "Digipan" and its ‘Waterfall’ screen. You will learn just how easy it is to get started with digital communications. You probably already have everything to hear these QSOs.

Bob Millard, KE6JI, obtained a Novice license in 1961, in his early high school years. His deeper interest in amateur radio began In 1978, when he earned his Technician and General Class licenses, and his Advanced Class license a few years after that. At that time, low band voice communications was what ham radio was all about. Bob wanted to work the world and initially needed a General ticket to do that. There was no stopping him, even if it did take him two trips to the FCC office in Long Beach to pass the 13 words-per-minute CW exam.

Bob’s home QTH rig is a Kenwood TS-180S with all the filters and digital memory/VFO upgrades. He likes to run SSB and a lot of PSK-31 (and other digital modes) from his home QTH and his 1965 Coronado 25-ft sailboat. Bob’s portable rig is a Yaesu FT-817 and a highly modified MP-1 Super Antenna mounted on a very short tripod. The FT-817 works great on PSK but SSB is really tough with only 5 watts.

Bob also has a ‘Go-Box’ rig based on an Icom IC-7000, whilch he used for this year's PRC 2012 Field Day digital station. This is the rig he will use during this month’s meeting.