[CQ-Contest] Tip - Weak Signal Detection

Pete Smith n4zr at contesting.com
Sun Feb 25 20:05:10 EST 2001

At 10:07 PM 2/25/01 -0600, Dan Weisenburger wrote:
 >As the band begins to sound dead, switch to wide filter.
 >Simple enough yet how many do this.  The noise floor drops (no
 >measurements on this) and tons of yet unworked signals appear which were
 >too weak to be heard at all with the narrower setting. This works on SSB
 >as well.
 >During ARRL DX test this would be very effective, not so much during a
 >World-Wide because of the different target audience.  It can still help
 >during a sunspot minimum.

Boy, this sure doesn't work for me.  It also doesn't seem to me to make
theoretical sense, particularly on CW.  Why would the noise floor drop?

What does work for me is to back off on the RF gain, keeping bandwidth the
same.  Often, I can hear the weak signals much better that way, perhaps
because my AGC is less affected by the noise.  I think this is essentially
what the recent articles in QST were getting at.

73, Pete N4ZR
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