[CQ-Contest] Re: Does might make right in constesting?

spa spa at tri.net
Sun Feb 27 17:44:04 EST 2000

I'll take a different frustration on this:

The past few years I've been operating from a 400 ft hill, single band 4 el on either 10M or 15M from a temporary crank up tower.  Kenwood
TS-940 to Dentron MLA 2500 at about 800 watts.  I'm definitely not a contester, but enjoy the huge amount of DX in a limited time.  I can
honestly say that at that location in Kansas, I've heard central Africans calling CQ for 10 min with no answer, a lone Korean ask me if the
band was open to US!, and been overwhelmed from JAs to the point that my ability to get the calls into the computer collapsed....thank God for
Writelog hints/type ahead.  VV6C was 59 for a long time in the CW test with enough time between QSOs that I could sit and drream what
lonelyness must be from the other end.

Problem is at age 60 (ok, there are good operators older) I really don't feel comfortable calling CQ because I can't/never could handle the
calls and sound like a dolt (especially on CW at 40 wpm) when I ask for a repeat.  So basically I search and pounce and one call usually does
it.  DXing rather than contesting.

But:  I keep hearing the big dogs as I tune up and down in there (W1s, 4, 6s S7 or so from the skipping over Kansas or the back of the beams)
get called from some neat DX who are not calling CQ either and I will never hear again.  So rarely, I tail end them and grab a quick contact
and disappear, cry, or last contest probably did the ultimate sin: found a very loud RTTY station mid band that I could back up to as the
surrounds were empty, shout "####" up 5 or what ever and usually got a contact.

Maybe, as they say about hats, no one should have one with more personality than he has.


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>From Leigh S. Jones" <kr6x at kr6x.com  Mon Feb 28 01:26:33 2000
From: Leigh S. Jones" <kr6x at kr6x.com (Leigh S. Jones)
Date: Sun, 27 Feb 2000 17:26:33 -0800
Subject: [CQ-Contest] RE: (CQ-Contest) IC-756PRO

At the Southern California Contest Club meeting yesterday (Saturday), two
representatives from ICOM demonstrated the IC-756PRO (plus an amplifier).
After reading empassioned arguements from WW2Y, et al, on the reflector
regarding the adequacy of a 15 kHz wide IF with a 24-bit A/D processor and
digital signal processing in lieu of an analog receiver midsection, I was
quite curious to hear how the receiver performed.

The following observations must be clear:

1)  I was not listening during the ARRL DX Test -- that was a week earlier.
I was listening at an extremely quiet location with great antennas (W6EEN)
that may be described as Southern California's premier single-operator DX
contest station this year.  Numerous loud signals were evident, but the
front-end was not subjected to contest-like conditions.

2) The IC-756PRO may possibly be touted by ICOM as the competitor to the
FT-1000MP, but the physical size of the IC-756PRO is considerably smaller.
Direct comparison between W6EEN's TS950SDX and the IC-756PRO showed a degree
of crowding of the front panel controls on the IC-756PRO.  I personally have
never been swayed by arguements regarding the sizes of the controls on "rice
boxes", but those who are sensitive to these issues may not favor the
smaller sized radio.  And, clearly, the IC-756PRO does not have two large
main tuning knobs like some of the advanced contesting radios.

As for the comments of WW2Y, this demo convinced me that the 24-bit A/D
processor performance approaches the theoretical 144 dB dynamic range.
Other issues discussed at the demonstration were also convincingly
demonstrated.  The digital filtering seems to outperform the skirt
selectivity of my TS-940SAT.  It was quite easy to separate the carrier
component of moderately weak CW signals from their key-click component -- a
feature that appears to have been interpreted by some as an indication that
the IC-756PRO generates key-click components internally.  All of the key
clicks that I heard sounded like components of the transmitted signal.

I was also impressed with how quite the receiver became when the antenna was
disconnected.  While I did not measure the dynamic range of the receiver, I
became convinced, at least on W6EEN's antenna, that without attenuation in
the front end, the dynamic range window is centered low on the noise-to
maximum signal continuum.  This should be reassuring to those who want to
use the radio with mobile whips or loop receiving antennas without
additional preamplifiers, but could easily result in front-end overload if
the radio is mis-operated and run at full front-end sensitivity on a good
antenna.  Under these conditions, the front end may possibly overload before
the 24-bit A/D processor in the IF does.

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