[CQ-Contest] contesting in 10 years

Kenneth E. Harker kenharker at kenharker.com
Fri Feb 2 15:13:04 EST 2007

     I was not disputing that one can operate an entire contest with
100% recorded voice files.  In fact, my post acknowledges that it is 
possible and has been done, and I'm sure it will continue to be done
in the future.  But your prediction was, "In 10 years, major 
phone contests will be won by contestants who use 100% recorded voice 
files."  WriteLog has been able to do this for three or four years 
now, and even though I have heard stations on the air using that feature, 
I have yet to see anyone come close to winning a major contest who relies 
upon 100% recorded voice files.  I don't think it will happen in the next 
10 years, let alone become a commonplace event for those using 100% 
recorded voice files to win major contests.

     I've been in phone contesting for around 10 years now myself, and 
a DVK has always been a part of the contest experience for me.  I 
only use it to call CQ, and I change my CQ recording frequently - every
few hours.  And I call CQ without the DVK a lot, too.  I suspect that very 
few of the most successful phone contesters use a DVK for exchanges, either.
The actual flow of QSO completion on phone at high rates is so dynamic that 
relying upon pre-recorded audio would seem to me to be a major handicap.

     The ability to operate with 100% recorded voice files is surely a 
good thing for those with speech problems for whom phone contesting 
would otherwise be too difficult or not enjoyable.  And I'm sure that for
some people it is more fun to operate a phone contest without speaking.
I imagine it could allow people to operate in situations (i.e. where 
others are trying to sleep nearby) where they wouldn't have been able to 
operate at all.  But at the highest level of performance, I see no reason 
to believe that recorded audio will be competitive with live voice any 
time soon.

On Thu, Feb 01, 2007 at 10:49:57PM -0500, Jamie Dupree NS3T wrote:
> WM5R wrote about voice files and contesting:
> >I remember the first several contests after WriteLog added that very feature,
> >and the stations I heard using 100% recorded voice files sounded awful and
> >did not win any contests.  I don't hear very many stations doing that any more.
> 15 years ago, not many people would have predicted that you could work a
> CW contest without a keyer.  Using just a computer keyboard would have
> been scoffed at, but now it's pretty common.
> The same evolution is already taking place with voice files.  Listen during 
> Sweepstakes and you hear lots of taped CQ's and exchanges.  The next
> frontier will be running full contests with voice files.  It can be done.
> In fact, check your log Ken.  We had a Q last year in the WPX SSB.  
> My voice files work so well that I was running stations on 40 meters while I
> worked you on the second radio S&P on 15 meters.  All of it on tape.
> I especially find that voice files make SO2R much easier on phone, mainly
> because the juggling act of two radios is made simpler by firing
> recorded wav files...sort of like SO2R in CW. 
> And people are moving beyond the robotic sound.  I've got 15,000 wav files
> that now take up over 500MB on my shack PC.  I keep adding to it little
> by little.  Your full callsign is one of hundreds at Writelog's disposal.
> My mic stays unplugged and it sure is a lot of fun.  I often wonder...how
> well would it do if I had more than dipoles in my backyard?  I think pretty good.
> 73 Jamie NS3T
> _______________________________________________
> CQ-Contest mailing list
> CQ-Contest at contesting.com
> http://lists.contesting.com/mailman/listinfo/cq-contest

Kenneth E. Harker WM5R
kenharker at kenharker.com

More information about the CQ-Contest mailing list