Sunday, January 13, 2008

070 Club PSK Fest Recap

Well the PSK Fest was fun. I started out QRP but got no bites so switched up to low power (50 watts) and worked 117 uniques on 40 meters, spending almost all of my time between 7070 and 7073 kHz. I made a couple of friends along the way and we're going to set up skeds to try out more of the digital modes. I checked down at 7035 a few times but there was no workable DX from here in West Virginia. I worked a couple of Americans down there at 7035 and noticed that a couple of CW operators were intentionally QRMing the PSK signals. There seemed to be plenty of space on the band so I'm not sure why that would be.

I did notice something unfortunate. Quite a few PSK operators were overdriving their rigs with signals 300 Hz wide. One signal I saw had repeating audio harmonics that spread his signal across 1,500 Hz. One of the 300 Hz wide operators asked me how his signal looked and I told him, but he didn't seem to care. I wonder if those operators realize that distortion and wide signals actually harms their readability, in addition to spoiling the band.

I'm looking forward to the next digital contest!

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