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Re: [CQ-Contest] High Rate Dual Radio CQing

To: cq-contest@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] High Rate Dual Radio CQing
From: Richard Ferch <ve3iay@storm.ca>
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2015 14:17:01 -0500
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This is straying pretty far from the original topic (not that that's unusual for this reflector), but... you said "I've always assumed the serious ops would be assisted except for SS." I wonder what gave you that idea?

Look at the world records for CQ WW, CQ WPX and CQ WW RTTY, in all of which there has been a separate Assisted class for some time. The great majority of the unassisted records are higher than the corresponding assisted records. The only exceptions I found are a few single-band records, and the majority of those are single-band QRP, which is not exactly where you expect to find the serious ops hanging out.

I would attribute this edge for unassisted over assisted to several factors:

- The unassisted competition is more prestigious than the assisted competition ("real contesters don't need assistance").

- WRTC qualifying rules give higher weights to unassisted scores than assisted scores.

- Assistance only directly helps S&P (other people spotting you helps you while you are running, but you don't have to be assisted to take advantage of that), and with the possible exception of QRP, the lion's share of most top scorers' points come from running, not S&Ping.

- Many people operating assisted (although probably not the highest scorers) get side-tracked into using the assistance to DX, i.e. to chase multipliers instead of concentrating on maximizing their score.

While assistance does help you find multipliers (and takes quite a lot of the challenge out of the sweep in SS), I believe the biggest advantage it gives you is that it makes S&Ping a lot easier. Instead of tuning to the next signal, listening to see who it is and checking whether it is a dupe or not, you can just use single key combinations to jump up or down the bandmap from one unworked station to the next, without wasting time listening to stations who turn out to be dupes. This is a big advantage for someone who is mostly S&Ping (e.g. many QRPers), but for the original subjects of this thread (dual radio CQing), it makes no difference.

With respect to category shopping, statistically speaking the easiest way to category shop is probably to switch from unassisted to assisted. Of course, if you know ahead of time that you are going to do that, you might as well go ahead and use the cluster, and then it's no longer category shopping, it's just choosing your original category with goals in mind.

Rich VE3KI

KL7SB wrote:

always assumed the serious ops would be assisted except for SS.
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