Need help in setting up the Kenwood TH-D72A for ECHOLINK. Cannot find if I need to connect to computer or some node through a local repeater.
Echolink allows repeaters to be connected over the internet, and also allows licensed hams with computers to connect to the system directly without using a radio. So there are two ways to participate:
- Find a local repeater that is connected to the Echolink system, and access that repeater with your radio.
- Download, install, and run the Echolink software on your computer. You'll need a microphone or a headset with a microphone. You'll need to validate your callsign with the administrators, which I seem to remember means sending a scanned copy of your license.
If you have a local repeater connected to the Echolink system, then configuring your radio is simple. Just set it up to talk to the repeater in the same way you configure your radio to talk to any other FM repeater: frequency, offset, CTCSS tone or CDCSS code, etc.
Generally the administrators of a repeater decide if the repeater should be connected to Echolink and when, and what other repeaters or conferences the repeater should be linked to when it is connected. If you run the software, then you can decide to which repeater or conference to connect, so the software is more flexible.
If you do run the software and connect to a repeater, know that you are announced when you connect and that you are taking up a connection slot, so please only connect if you plan to actively participate. To connect and just listen, especially when someone hails you directly, is generally considered to be rude. If your goal is to just listen, connect to a conference server instead; conference servers have many more connection slots, and your arrival isn't announced, so it's not considered rude.