New to DMR and still learning ...

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Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2021 1:44 am
Location: Norway

New to DMR and still learning ...

Post by la8ira »

Hi, πŸ‘‹πŸ»

I'm new to DMR and got my first DMR radio maybe a month ago, the AnyTone 878. πŸ™‚

Made the codeplug from scratch by doing a lot of research online on DMR itself and how to use the radio, and how to deal with the codeplug.
Soo many functions and possibilities with DMR. πŸ™‚

Fortunately I live less than one km from our local DMR repeater, so connecting to a talkgroup on Brandmeister is easily done and seems to be working great. πŸ™‚

The antenna i was using on the 878 is the Diamond SRJ77CA.
Yes, quite a whip to be carrying around and not practical when sitting in a car. πŸ˜‰

So got myself the not so long Nagoya NA-701 antenna to try out. So far so good.

Since the local DMR repeater is not exactly busy, I've been using it quite a bit to learn about talkgroups, timeslots and so on.
But since i wish to have certain talkgroups static, and the repeater don't have those static, sitting and pressing ptt every 10 minutes - well is not an option on a long term basis. πŸ˜‰

So spending quite a bit of time looking for a hotspot - and many options there are. πŸ™‚

Was first thinking in the direction of using old analog radios and building a mobile repeater from them, with the very nice interface from Scott at Repeater Builder .
But having two radios, an interface, a psu and an antenna - well not really what i need, and not practical to 'drag' around with me neither. πŸ˜‰
And do I really need a repeater myself. πŸ™‚

Then the direction was headed more towards Pistar, Raspberry Pi and those simplex or duplex boards.

Since I only plan to do DMR, and maybe NXDN, the HotSpot must be able to do those modes.

Also have no intention of using DMR on VHF, even though the 878 does both UHF and VHF.

After reading about the OpenSpot3, and studying all the options available - plus it was designed and made for digital radio, i bought the OpenSpot3. πŸ™‚

What i like about the OS3 is that the whole setup and configuration process is very user friendly, and very well described in the online user manual.

Over all, after only having the OpenSpot3 for a couple of days now, i think the SharkRF crew did a really great job. πŸ™‚

They certainly spend some time and effort in making a HotSpot with many options, many small things one would like to have a setting for.

- I don't need to have the database with callsigns updated all the time into the OS3, my 878 have the whole world of DMR ID's, just below 200.000 ID's and the radio have room for 500.000 ID's.
So you just disable the updating of it, and if i decide i need the database, i install it.

- You can run it on both battery and constant power via the USB-C connector, yes take a not of that - many places you still see the older Micro-USB connector, a connector that was made to fail, fragile and not reliable on a device where you repeatedly connect and disconnect the charger.
And you can disable 'Fast charging'.

- You have up to 20 mW output.
Think many tend to think that mW, is it really enough with a few mW. πŸ€”
Yes it is enough with mW, and you can easily adjust it up and down. Currently have it set to 10 mW, and it works very well. πŸ™‚
It's not a repeater for mounting up in a tall mast on the mountain. πŸ˜‰

- Using Brandmeister, and great to be able to set up a backup server in case the primary server have issues, or the internet just decides to act up. πŸ™‚

There're probably many things still to discover about the OS3. πŸ™‚

Was not initially happy about having to connect the OS3 via WiFi to my local network, since I've heard and read many complaints about connecting HotSpots via WiFi, and always I prefer a cabled connection, which is why i was leaning towards Raspberry Pi at first.

But OS3 was built with a good WiFi antenna, just whish 5 GHz was available, since I'm trying to phase out the use of the over congested 2.4 GHz band. πŸ™‚

But seems to be working well on the WiFi, the OS3. πŸ™‚

I did run into some funny things during the initial set up and configuration of the OS3.

After spending a lot of time creating the codeplug for my 878, with many DMR repeaters, and therefore different TX and RX frequencies - I set the OS3 up same way, with different TX and RX frequencies, not because i really need it, but because it's possible in the OS3 settings.
That went well, until i saw on Brandmeister, that my OS3 came up with configuration of timeslot 1 and 2, and my OS3 was recognized as a repeater.
Every time i hit ptt, Brandmeister showed every transmission on either timeslot 1 or 2, being sent on timeslot 1.
Didn't quite understand what was happening at first, since the talkgroups i entered in either timeslot 1 or 2 in the Brandmeister Selfcare section, they showed up when using the OS3 gui in my browser.
But when i added talkgroups to the OS3 using the browser gui, the talkgroups were added to timeslot 0, a timeslot I did not find on the Brandmeister Selfcare page.
Thought that was a bit strange, that it should show up as a hotspot, even though using different TX and RX frequencies.
I then did a factory reset and /didn't/ enter seperate TX and RX frequencies - then the OS3 showed up as a HotSpot on the Brandmeister Selfcare page, with only one timeslot, timeslot 0. πŸ™‚

Another strange thing, wanted to change the colour code in Modem section for the OS3, didn't need to change the frequency.
So entered another colour code, pressed Save, then received a message that it was not possible to Save the frequency, after which the OS3 rebooted.
When back up and running, the colour code was changed. πŸ€”
Have tried to press Save a couple of other places in the settings for the OS3, without changing anything, then i receive a message that it couldn't be Saved, and the OS3 reboots. πŸ€”

OS3 is working fine after the reboot.

Interesting area, DMR radio. πŸ™‚

First thought that Brandmeister was and is the DMR radio for radio amateurs, but quickly learned that there are other networks as well. πŸ™‚

Used to live a place where Yaesu's fusion was running - not a bandwagon I wanted to jump on to, so looked into DMR after moving up to Tromso in Norway, and now I started learning about this new world and had one or my first QSO's with a radio amateur from New Zealand - it's like you have the whole world in your hand with a hand held radio. 🌍 πŸ™‚

Have a great day fellow hamsters. πŸ™‚

73's from Alex, LA8IRA
The AnyTone AT-D878UVII-Plus with the Nagoya NA-701 antenna, and the Kenwood KMC-45D (B95) microphone.
The AnyTone AT-D878UVII-Plus with the Nagoya NA-701 antenna, and the Kenwood KMC-45D (B95) microphone.
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