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DV-Dongel Buy or not to Buy

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  • mwtomcat@btinternet.com
    Hi Guys I live in Haywards Heath West Sussex and live in a retirement village no antennas aloud nor are there any D-Star repeaters,So I am considering a dongle
    Message 1 of 7 , Jan 9, 2009
      Hi Guys
      I live in Haywards Heath West Sussex and live in a retirement village
      no antennas aloud nor are there any D-Star repeaters,So I am
      considering a dongle to be able to get out.(I use skype and echolink)

      Can I have some answers Please.
      Prices £150 and £200 what is going on.

      Is there any were on the net you can listen to a recording of a
      conference and or a one on one.

      Unlike a radio how dose one get a feel for it before one spends his money

      Thanks
      Tom
      M0ZSA
    • Storer, Darren
      Hi Tom, there are a couple for sites that provide streaming of D-Star audio in the UK: http://www.77hz.com/ (GB7AU - Amersham/West London)
      Message 2 of 7 , Jan 10, 2009
        Hi Tom,

        there are a couple for sites that provide streaming of D-Star audio in the UK:

        http://www.77hz.com/ (GB7AU - Amersham/West London)
        http://www.gb7yd.org.uk/  (GB7YD Barnsley, Yorkshire)

        There are a few others if you Google around...

        73 de Darren
        G7LWT

        2009/1/9 mwtomcat@... <mwtomcat@...>

        Hi Guys
        I live in Haywards Heath West Sussex and live in a retirement village
        no antennas aloud nor are there any D-Star repeaters,So I am
        considering a dongle to be able to get out.(I use skype and echolink)

        Can I have some answers Please.
        Prices £150 and £200 what is going on.

        Is there any were on the net you can listen to a recording of a
        conference and or a one on one.

        Unlike a radio how dose one get a feel for it before one spends his money

        Thanks
        Tom
        M0ZSA


      • Neil
        Hi Tom, Not that I ve ever heard them working, the Amersham and S.Yorkshire repeater groups have a live feed on both sites. The Yorkshire one crashes my
        Message 3 of 7 , Jan 10, 2009
          Hi Tom,

          Not that I've ever heard them working, the Amersham and S.Yorkshire
          repeater groups have a 'live feed' on both sites. The Yorkshire one
          crashes my browser (they know) and the www.77hz.com link is never
          online when I try, so maybe you'll be luckier one day?

          To be honest, the only way to go without an outside aerial is the
          Dongle at the moment I'm afraid. Here in Salisbury, the promise of
          coverage from a D-Star node quite close has been thwarted with
          problems and is now off-line. (Gateway use has been terminated so
          what is the point in using it, albeit as a relatively private
          ordinary repeater.)
          Quite a few people are actually selling their equipment now because
          of this I'm afraid to say.

          Unless a Node becomes available quite close, I wouldn't bother yet,
          a handheld is quite expensive, although nice, but for our current
          coverage, not really viable for those on a tight budget.

          Regards,

          Neil.

          --- In DVDongle@yahoogroups.com, "mwtomcat@..." <mwtomcat@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi Guys
          > I live in Haywards Heath West Sussex and live in a retirement
          village
          > no antennas aloud nor are there any D-Star repeaters,So I am
          > considering a dongle to be able to get out.(I use skype and
          echolink)
          >
          > Can I have some answers Please.
          > Prices £150 and £200 what is going on.
          >
          > Is there any were on the net you can listen to a recording of a
          > conference and or a one on one.
          >
          > Unlike a radio how dose one get a feel for it before one spends
          his money
          >
          > Thanks
          > Tom
          > M0ZSA
          >
        • harwood443@btinternet.com
          ... hi tom i have a dongle found it very good ,easy to use very much like going onto the nodes. a cheap way into d-star. i have the 2820 in the car and the
          Message 4 of 7 , Jan 11, 2009
            --- In DVDongle@yahoogroups.com, "mwtomcat@..." <mwtomcat@...> wrote:
            >
            hi tom i have a dongle found it very good ,easy to use very much like
            going onto the nodes. a cheap way into d-star.
            i have the 2820 in the car and the dongle in the shack.in my opinon
            worth getting
            darryl

            > Hi Guys
            > I live in Haywards Heath West Sussex and live in a retirement
            village
            > no antennas aloud nor are there any D-Star repeaters,So I am
            > considering a dongle to be able to get out.(I use skype and
            echolink)
            >
            > Can I have some answers Please.
            > Prices £150 and £200 what is going on.
            >
            > Is there any were on the net you can listen to a recording of a
            > conference and or a one on one.
            >
            > Unlike a radio how dose one get a feel for it before one spends his
            money
            >
            > Thanks
            > Tom
            > M0ZSA
            >
          • g3vvt@aol.com
            Hi Tom, Use a DV Dongle by necessity living too far from the larger areas of population, so this was the only answer at present in my case. Works very well
            Message 5 of 7 , Jan 11, 2009
              Hi Tom,
               
              Use a DV Dongle by necessity living too far from the larger areas of population, so this was the only answer at present in my case.
               
              Works very well and does show how good the D-Star system can work particularly with a well set up DV Dongle at each end. However, am not impressed with the audio quality of the main radio in use with the D-Star system the Icom 2820 as it is badly let down with its transmit audio quality when presented with the average Brit voice. Fares much better with the N American voice which tends to have a lower register. Had exactly the same problem in the earlier days of SSB 43 years ago when Japanese radios first came onto the UK market. This again only my personal opinion that is hampered by my gradually deteriorating hearing ability (though which on the other hand can beneficially screen me from verbal abuse from the XYL)
               
              The DV Dongle now seems to have risen in price to £200 from a low of £145 now due to the falling value of the UK pound against the US$ of late. The only hope is for a return to a higher value for the UK£ which seems to be heading there over the last week, otherwise the present price may hamper sales.
               
              In installation found the DV Dongle difficult until the order of what was needed was mastered. The makers web site and more so the provided CD hinders progress as the usage is slanted towards the Apple Mac where I use MS Windows. Once you have got over this installation hurdle it all seems relatively easy to make changes which did to first beta 3, then beta 4 operating software. The latest beta 4 software in my opinion is superb with the only few extras see at present being of value is an audio level meter to assist in setting up the device and access to a test reflector both of which are beneficially covered with Echolink.
               
              At the end it is all in the eye (or ear) of the beholder. You pays your money and take the chances as they come.
               
              Regards,
              Bob, G3VVT
            • Neil
              Hi Bob et all, I have to say the Dongles are the best sounding out of the lot, the handhelds come second and I totally agree that the 2820 does pitifully sound
              Message 6 of 7 , Jan 11, 2009
                Hi Bob et all,

                I have to say the Dongles are the best sounding out of the lot, the
                handhelds come second and I totally agree that the 2820 does
                pitifully sound awfull compared to the rest.

                However, there is a mod, to take out/bypass the third audio input
                filter which (aparently) makes the radio sound much more human on
                digital.

                If I try it and its ok, I'll let you know. If its not, then you
                wont hear me again on there...Hi Hi.

                73's

                Neil.
                G7EBY.

                --- In DVDongle@yahoogroups.com, g3vvt@... wrote:
                >
                > Hi Tom,
                >
                > Use a DV Dongle by necessity living too far from the larger areas
                of
                > population, so this was the only answer at present in my case.
                >
                > Works very well and does show how good the D-Star system can work
                > particularly with a well set up DV Dongle at each end. However, am
                not impressed with
                > the audio quality of the main radio in use with the D-Star system
                the Icom
                > 2820 as it is badly let down with its transmit audio quality when
                presented with
                > the average Brit voice. Fares much better with the N American
                voice which
                > tends to have a lower register. Had exactly the same problem in
                the earlier
                > days of SSB 43 years ago when Japanese radios first came onto the
                UK market.
                > This again only my personal opinion that is hampered by my
                gradually
                > deteriorating hearing ability (though which on the other hand can
                beneficially screen me
                > from verbal abuse from the XYL)
                >
                > The DV Dongle now seems to have risen in price to £200 from a low
                of £145
                > now due to the falling value of the UK pound against the US$ of
                late. The only
                > hope is for a return to a higher value for the UK£ which seems to
                be heading
                > there over the last week, otherwise the present price may hamper
                sales.
                >
                > In installation found the DV Dongle difficult until the order of
                what was
                > needed was mastered. The makers web site and more so the provided
                CD hinders
                > progress as the usage is slanted towards the Apple Mac where I
                use MS Windows.
                > Once you have got over this installation hurdle it all seems
                relatively easy
                > to make changes which did to first beta 3, then beta 4 operating
                software.
                > The latest beta 4 software in my opinion is superb with the only
                few extras see
                > at present being of value is an audio level meter to assist in
                setting up
                > the device and access to a test reflector both of which are
                beneficially
                > covered with Echolink.
                >
                > At the end it is all in the eye (or ear) of the beholder. You pays
                your
                > money and take the chances as they come.
                >
                > Regards,
                > Bob, G3VVT
                >
              • Gary Pearce KN4AQ
                (Moderator note: the February issue is out!) I have a review of the DVDongle coming out in the February 2009 issue of QST (once again they re providing a
                Message 7 of 7 , Jan 11, 2009

                  I have a review of the DVDongle coming out in the February 2009 issue of QST (once again they're providing a generous amount of space to review a D-STAR product).

                  I'll be able to post a PDF of the review on my web site after it's in print in a couple of weeks, but I'll make a point or two from the review here.

                  In the shack, you can get a lot more D-STAR in with a Dongle than you can with a radio. The Dongle lets you quickly drop in and out of Gateway enabled repeaters and any of the reflectors worldwide, and spend as long as you want talking and monitoring them, all without tying up the local repeater.  If you did that on the air, you'd be hogging the repeater and you'd drive the other D-STAR users a little crazy.

                  The Dongle can already do things a radio can't, like monitor all three repeaters in a stack at once (NO radio can do that, since no D-STAR radio has  VHF, UHF and 1200 MHz in one).  And while the list of features requested and in the works is as long as your arm, things like multiple-repeater monitoring and scanning are in the works.  Robin told me his goal is to emulate all the features of the radios, and do things the radios can't.

                  And as others have mentioned, the Dongle lets you get on D-STAR from anywhere you have an Internet connection, even if there is no repeater nearby.

                  If you like D-STAR, it's a good choice.

                  73,
                  Gary KN4AQ

                  ARVN: Amateur Radio//Video News
                  Gary Pearce KN4AQ
                  508 Spencer Crest Ct.
                  Cary, NC 27513
                  kn4aq@...
                  919-380-9944
                  www.ARVideoNews.com

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