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1462Re: [dxatlas] My eham review - Skimmer was a game changer for me

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  • Zack
    Jul 17, 2009
      What I mean is since I can see 12khz of spectrum that lets me see a lot of weak CW signals that I can jump on and make contact with.



      --- In dxatlas_group@yahoogroups.com, Felipe Ceglia - PY1NB <felipeceglia2@...> wrote:
      >
      > Maybe I didnt quite get it, but are you decoding it visually on the
      > software's horizontal waterfall?
      >
      > 73,
      >
      > Felipe - PY1NB
      >
      > Zack wrote:
      > >
      > >
      > > For years I tried off and on to relearn the code but I never kept up
      > > with it. Spent most of my time In the past few years on PSK and most
      > > recently on JT64A.
      > >
      > > Earlier this year I decided to give Skimmer a try with my Flex-5000A.
      > > Because soundcard modes integrate so well (no interface is needed) with
      > > my rig I found that I was getting 75-95% good copy with CW. Using the
      > > waterfall in Skimmer and the panadapter in my 5000A are killer apps.
      > > Also, my rig has a built in CW program that lets you set up
      > > preprogrammed memory keys and also lets you type via the PC keyboard.
      > >
      > > Making radio VISUAL changes everything. And it was not long before I was
      > > spending 100% of my time on CW.
      > >
      > > I was amazed how well it would copy even with fairly weak signals. If
      > > the copy was well below 75% I could usually figure out what the other
      > > guy was sending anyway. Once the trial period expired I bought a license
      > > for it because I could not do without it.
      > >
      > > The fastest copy I have seen it decode was around 40+ WPM, not that I
      > > see much on the bands faster than that.
      > >
      > > Skimmer is used by me in contests but I only use it to increase my DXCC,
      > > VUCC and WAS count. BTW I never submit any scores because it is against
      > > the rules and I am mainly a DX'er anyway.
      > >
      > > Lately I have been doing a lot of CW on 6M as there has been a lot of
      > > eskip. It is fascinating to see how quickly signals will appear and just
      > > as quickly fade. And I can see 12khz all at once so lots of times I get
      > > to make the contact before most others would even tune across the DX.
      > >
      > > Now I know a lot of CW purists would like to yell at me for using
      > > Skimmer, saying it is somehow "cheating". Is it cheating if you copy CW
      > > by ear and use a word processing program to transcribe the copy? How
      > > about using an iambic keyer or a dedicated CW keyboard? If my radio only
      > > uses transistors is that cheating. After all real radios glow in the
      > > dark don't they? Does that mean I need to get a spark transmitter instead?
      > >
      > > Skimmer is just a tool that makes my hobby easier. Just like how my
      > > Flex-5000A is easier to use than Drake twins.
      > >
      > > I admire those who can TX 50 wpm per minute with a straight key and copy
      > > everything in their head. However, I am not one of those people. On the
      > > other hand I am now actually spending a lot more time on the radio since
      > > I discovered Skimmer. I find operating CW with it is more interesting
      > > than PSK.
      > >
      > > 73
      > > Zack
      > > N8FNR
      > >
      > >
      >
      > --
      > Felipe Ceglia - PY1NB
      > -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      > PR1T team member /// Rio DX Group member /// Araucaria DX Group member
      > http://www.dxwatch.com /// http://reversebeacon.net ///
      > http://riodxgroup.dxwatch.com
      >
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