[CQ-Contest] Help on choice of CW Narrow filter

K3BU at aol.com K3BU at aol.com
Thu Apr 15 10:48:51 EDT 1999

CT1ELP, Pedro writes:

<< Since my equipment supports only one filter I must choose between
	the 500Hz or the 250Hz filter.
	At first I thought that the 250Hz would be the best one, but on
	second thoughts maybe it is too narrow and it would not let me
	hear operators that are not so well tuned on my frequency but
	still are trying to answer my call.
     I wonder what most of the DXers and Contesters use and why.

For very serious contesting I use all filters I can get, even 125 Hz. There 
are situations when each has its benefits. Important is also quality or shape 
factor of filter's curves. First thing I do when I get new radio, with 
"regular" factory filters, I replace them with International Radio filters, 
which are superior to anything else out there on ham market. 
	If I had to select one filter, I would go for 500Hz or better IR 
400Hz filter. It gives good compromise between bandwidth and practicality. 
	Another factor to consider is that some lower quality filters have 
least steeper skirts, so i.e. stock (cheap) 250 Hz filter might look like IR 
400 Hz filter.
	Don't forget to tune your RIT or VFO knob after each CQ, even with 
500 Hz filter, there are some stations (with their RIT on and off freq) that 
call way off frequency.
	Installing high quality filters is the best improvement for any 
radio, especially for contesters. I.e. replacing both (Kenwood) IF filters in 
TS870 with IR 2.1 kHz filters, makes completely different radio (DSP 
improvement too).

Yuri, K3BU

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