A great weekend with the AREG team working FreeDV around VK; and despite some poor band conditions, the world.
We were located at Younghusband, on the banks of the river Murray, a 90 minute drive due East of Adelaide:
We had two K3 radios, one with a SM1000 on 20M, and one using laptop based FreeDV on 40M:
Here is the enormous 40M beam we had available, with my young son at the base:
It was great to see FreeDV 700B performing well under quite adverse conditions. Over time I became more and more accustomed to the sound of 700B, and could understand it comfortably from a laptop loudspeaker across the room.
When we had good quality FreeDV 1600 signals, it really sounded great, especially the lack of SSB channel noise. As we spoke to people, we noticed a lot of other FreeDV traffic popping up around our frequency.
We did have some problems with S7 power line hash from a nearby HT line. The ambient HF RF noise issue is a problem for HF radio everywhere these days. I have some ideas for DSP based active noise cancellation using 2 or more receivers that I might try in 2016. Mark, VK5QI, had a novel solution. He connected FreeDV on his laptop to Andy’s (VK5AKH) websdr in Adelaide. With the lower noise level we successfully completed a QSO with Gerhard, 0E3GBB, in Austria. Here are Andy (left) and Mark working Gerhard:
I was in the background most of the time, working on FreeDV on my laptop! Thank you very much AREG and especially Chris, VK5CP, for hosting the event!