gloomer

HAM Terminology

16 posts in this topic

I've been studying Ham Radio for a few days now, but I'm getting a little confused with the terminology.

I thought it would be nice to have a scanner to pick up signals from about 30mhz - 1000mhz.

This is what a scanner does.

But I'd also like to transmit on those frequencies, so I don't think that's what a scanner does.

So then I looked up a 'mobile transceiver' which looks like it does both.

But there is also a 'mobile two way radio' which looks like it does both as well.

What am I looking for here, and what is the difference between the three?

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A transceiver transmits and receives. I think a scanner implies that the device tunes the receiver to different frequencies looking for a carrier. I guess a two-way is also a transceiver and usually this term is used with walkie-talkie-type functionality.

Edited by duper
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A transceiver is a two-way radio. Transceive = transmit and receive.

Go to http://www.arrl.org/ and find a local ham club. They will set up with someone nearby who can help you with your ticket. They'll probably be a bunch of old fat drunktards who will rant on and on about how "real ham radio" went away when they eliminated CW (morse code), but they'll at least help you get their ticket. Some might even be "cool" type hams who are closet hackers. Don't mention anything "off the reservation" like hacking, pirate radio and such. Just say you want to get into electronics.

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What I did:

I listened to local repeaters and simplex operations and became custom to how to operate, then I started going on qrz.com and doing practice exams, studied what I didn't know, and finally got my call sign.

I think the URL was: www.qrz.com/ham

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A scanner is slightly more than a receiver, it normally can scan (hence the name) through a sequence of frequencies quickly looking for a signal. It normally stops when it finds one so that you can listen to it.

A two way radio can TX and RX, but nominally only on specific frequencies.

A mobile transceiver can TX and RX on specific frequencies, however with the event of modern electronics they can easily roll in the functionality of a scanner. (RX is easy, TX needs carefully designed electronics.)

Cheers,

Munge.

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A scanner is a receiver. Specifically a scanner is a receiver designed to appeal to the VHF/UHF public safety monitor, and the biggest market segment for scanners is public safety types (cops, firefighters, EMTs/Paramedics, and related wanna-bes). Scanners have multiple memories, fast memory "scan" speeds, and features that are intended to appeal to the public safety market like APCO P-25 IMBE reception, PL/DPL decoding, alpha tags, trunked system monitoring, etc. Their frequency range is focused in the public safety/business LMR bands: 30-54, 138-174, 406-512, & 806-952 Mhz. The higher-end scanners have broader frequency coverage and begin to look like a communications receiver, but they are still intended for keeping an ear on the locals.

A communications receiver has full spectrum coverage, typically 100 KHz. - 2+ Ghz. They have better sensitivity/selectivity and are designed for searching around the spectrum looking for interesting signals, sitting on a signal channel you wish to monitor, or acting as an auxillary ham band receiver. They are weak on scanner-type features, but they are not scanners.

If you want to monitor the locals, you get a scanner. If you want to explore the airwaves, you get a communications receiver. When you get into RF long enough you typically have both.

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i just bought a Ham radio http://www.rlham.com/cgi-bin/shop/modelloo...?MODEL=VX15064B

VHF tx 144-148 mhz "2 meter band" neat lil thing passed the tech exam like 4 days ago right now just listening in i cant wait to get my callsign so i can start rambling on the airwaves a lot of repeaters in the area coupled with this lil 5W output radio i should be meeting a lot of new freinds

word of advise to those taking the test , show up give em your 10-15$ you can take all three tests for one fee (i didnt know this) if you pass the previous one 1st

300=Mhz x "meter band" (roughly) so 150Mhz = what band? 300/150Mhz="2m"

Watts=Current(amps) x Voltage

Voltage=Current(amps) x Resistance

Edited by JimmyRidge
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passed the tech exam like 4 days ago right now just listening in i cant wait to get my callsign so i can start rambling on the airwaves

Congratulations. Welcome to the club. :)

Check out the website eham.net... it's a pretty lively community of hams from all over the world. Lots of good technical info. In particular, you can check the reviews of your rig: http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/1324

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Ah yes, the lure of being able to hit "PTT". :)

Everyone in here has given great info on getting their ticket, but I noticed a couple things that should be mentioned...

- The No-Code Technician ticket did do alot to bring more people into the hobby. Many of them were CB'ers that went "legit" with their operations. However the ARRL literature really hasn't taken into account that people can get an "Extra Class" ticket which is the highest level ticket all without taking a single morse code test. While I always encourage people to learn Morse Code because there are real benefits to learning it (mostly the ability to transmit in areas that doesn't allow Phone operation and the ability to communicate even in questionable conditions) people can and should study and test up to at least General class. This will allow you to use the HF bands which is where I would say the real action is in Amateur radio. It may not be as "Crystal Clear" in sound as FM on the highbands, but it's alot of fun when you consider that you're able to go global around the world *WITHOUT* internet tunneling.

- If you don't know why you should get your ticket or should upgrade to General class, consider getting in contact with your local ham club and ask them where they will be conducting "Field Day" in mid-June. It's the 24 hour mega-contest that happens world wide. Attend, listen, watch the log entries pile up with foreign identifiers such as 4X, 9A, JA, HS9, UA0 and think that it's happening just like that without being packetized and routed through fiber optics or wires. If you're really into seeing how one can setup with even the minimalist of antenna systems, show up early and help them setup. A few strands of wire, a slingshot and people are transmitting (and receiving) around the world. The antenna system is probably the most important part of your entire radio system.

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passed the tech exam like 4 days ago

(y)

Welcome to the club! B)

Edited by ES5TAW
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happy now? :D i really dont care i'm not doing anything wrong i'm a good boy and ps i did the mod tonight boredem got the better of me ;) turns out its true it works and yeah... buy this radio its cheap 100-120$ the battery is a bitch but i plan on hacking that next and adding a better antenna

found this juicy nugget for my radio

http://www.ham.dmz.ro/yaesu/vx-150-mars-cap-modification.php

kinda hesitant but i'm sure i'll try sooner or later

YEEHAW oh hey checkout this

http://www.p3e-satellite.org/en_EN/mission.html

satellite repeater neato! 2meter ;) and a crapload of other bands but sofar i just care about 2meter cause my radio

Edited by JimmyRidge
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JimmyRidge, congratulations! You just docdropped yourself! :withstupid:

You might want to edit out your call sign when you see this.. unless of course you did that intentionally..

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i took her apart earlier man those surface mount resistors are teeny i'm afraid my solder tip isnt small enough so instead of trying i put her pack together i'll try some other time no rush mainly just wanted to make sure the inside/my radio jived with what was on the site

UPDATE did the mod it works i did the "expand tx/rx" mod and it totally works! turns out my soldering iron was perfect <flat head> just so happened to be able to touch both ends of the diode and it flew right off (lost it) ;D i kinda wanted to keep it and solder it to a ring or somethin as a memento

supposedly its opened from 100-200 mhz but i doubt it can receive/ transmit reliably on those far off bands i dont plan on keying up outside of the 144-148 area but its good to know that if there ever is an emergency i can prolly get direct contacts untill that day

125-180 Mhz w00t

it was tense hand shaking and praying when i put it back together it wouldnt be "bricked"

just another instance of how great i am ;)

in god we trust, everyone else we monitor

- http://www.aosc.org/

Edited by JimmyRidge
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Im getting anxious for the next sun cycle..... when 10 meters opens up we're gonna have a ball!

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Im getting anxious for the next sun cycle..... when 10 meters opens up we're gonna have a ball!

Meh... 10m always seemed too fickle for me. Biggest benefit was shorter antenna length (I normally used half-wave dipoles)....

I haven't operated HF for several years, but I always kind of liked 15m. Enough DX to keep me interested, without the garbage on 20m. :)

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