Questions tagged [jargon]

Questions about acronyms, words, phrases, or other terminology specific to amateur radio.

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0
votes
2answers
73 views

Isolated linearly loaded antenna?

Is there a name or common descriptive term for a linearly loaded dipole or end-fed, where a (near) parallel loading element or elements are not connected (galvanically isolated) to the fed element or ...
4
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2answers
2k views

How to determine a serial number in cq contest?

What serial number is referred to in a cq contest? How do I determine that serial number?
8
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1answer
4k views

What does TX/RX Exchange refer to?

I am using the Aether logging software and it has two fields I do not understand: TX Exchange and RX Exchange. I know TX and RX refer to transmit and receive, but I'm not sure what to populate in ...
20
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1answer
4k views

Why do people say, “get a nickel,” on repeaters?

Sometimes, I'll hear someone say "wait a moment, I'm getting a nickel," and then drop the carrier only to resume talking. Why?
11
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4answers
7k views

What is dBm and why is it used rather than watts?

Reading through an RF power amplifier datasheet, I found the sheet only referenced dBm output power, rather than watts. What is dBm? How do I convert it to watts? Why, or when, would you use dBm to ...
10
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3answers
2k views

What is the origin, history behind “Ben's Best Bent Wire”?

Bens Best Bent Wire My uncle, who was a Merchant Marine in WWII used to tell me this. He was a ham, and said it would develop my fist musically. I was a small child at the time, and through his ...
5
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1answer
120 views

What is band stacking?

What is a band stacking register and/or band stacking buttons on a transceiver? And why would this be useful to an amateur radio operator? Is using "band stacking" a current operating ...
1
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1answer
131 views

Repeater identification ending (CW)

I am just starting to learn CW, and for practice I have been recording and transcribing repeater identifications that I hear. This is what I heard today: DE W9KIC/R BBG What is the meaning of "BBG"?
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2answers
144 views

How do you know if you're on a 10 meter band?

I am just getting into ham radio, and I find it very interesting, but to make phone calls, you have to be on a 10 meter band. Does anyone know how to infer the band you're on is 10 meter? Thank you ...
4
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3answers
829 views

What is the difference between RIT and XIT?

What is the difference between RIT and XIT? When would one use one and not the other for split (or other) HF operation? When would one need both? Which one is more useful for a transceiver to have ...
3
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1answer
330 views

Questions about effective isotropic sensitivity(EIS)

Recently, I read something about EIS (effective isotropic sensitivity) and TIS (total isotropic sensitivity). I'm trying to understand the concept, but I find it's quite hard for me. In the book ...
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2answers
53 views

What is “allied mode” with regards to PSK31?

Wikipedia says: Colloquial usage of the term 'PSK31' in amateur radio usually implies the use of the most commonly used variant of PSK31: binary phase shift keying (BPSK). BPSK uses no error control, ...
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2answers
85 views

Equipment Pricing

I am wondering about the exact pricing of kits. What is the range of each radio? How long do they last? Should I buy a portable or not? My complete budget is $100.
4
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5answers
263 views

What is IQ in the context of SDRs?

What is IQ, in the context of software-defined radios (SDRs)?
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1answer
339 views

Repeater Features: What is e-power and link?

I am so new to ham radio that I don't even have a transceiver or a certification study unit yet. Just learning all I can right now. So, I'm looking at a repeater that I might be able to reach with a 5-...
5
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2answers
161 views

What is a QSL card?

What is a QSL card? Why would I ever receive one? Why would I ever bother to send one? If so, when? Is it rude not to? Are they postcards sent by physical postal mail, or are they now digital ...
4
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1answer
115 views

How proper HIHI sounds like?

Recently I've read Zen And The Art Of Radiotelegraphy by Carlo Consoli, IK0YGJ. I must say, it's a great book, and as a new CW operator I've found plenty of useful information in it. What especially ...
5
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1answer
7k views

In amateur radio conversation, what does “hihi” mean?

A common phrase/word I've seen used in text and I've heard on air in conversation is "hihi" or "hi-hi". What does this mean and in what contexts is it appropriate to use?
1
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2answers
236 views

What is Logbook Of The World or LOTW?

An answer to this question on QSL cards refers to something called Logbook Of The World or LOTW. What is LOTW? What is its history? What problem does LOTW solve? (that isn't solved by plain QSL ...
8
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1answer
209 views

Why are radio frequency ranges aligned on multiples of 3?

Why are the radio bands organized by multiples of three? For example the HF band is from 3–30MHz and UHF is from 300–3000MHz. Why not multiples of 2? Or plain powers of ten?
8
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2answers
4k views

What is a panadapter?

To what does the term "panadapter" refer? (Physical hardware or software?) How did the term "panadapter" originate as related to radios or electronics? How is the term "panadapter" different from ...
2
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2answers
247 views

Why is the band scope called panadapter?

This feature that some radios have seem to have various names: band scope spectrum scope water fall panadapter I understand the first three names, but not panadapter. Where does it come from?
3
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1answer
114 views

What is “up” and “down”, and is it consistent with “top band”?

If I understand things right if you go "down" to "lower bands" you eventually get to "top band", which is 160 meter band. Since this doesn't make any sense to me, is there something I'm missing? You ...
13
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2answers
26k views

What do “QRM” and “QSB” refer to?

An answer on Basic QSO format? mentions things like "QRM" and "QSB". What do those terms mean?
5
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2answers
960 views

4NEC2 - Radiat-eff. vs. Radiat-power

In the output from 4NEC2 the input power is 100 W. On the left, in blue text, is Radiat-eff. which equals 15.41%. On the right is Radiat-power which equals 94.88 W. I would expect either the first ...
6
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1answer
1k views

What is homebrew?

My question is the title itself: what is homebrew (or home brewing)? And how do homebrews differ from ordinary ham radios?
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3answers
9k views

What does Ham mean?

Amateur radio operators are always referred to as Hams, it's basically the most common term for the hobby, at least around here. Where does the term come from? I heard that it's an acronym for ...
7
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5answers
820 views

Is a 5 watt UHF/VHF handheld considered QRP?

QRP doesn't have a strict definition, though 5W or less seems to be a common threshold. So would "QRP operation" usually be considered to include UHF/VHF handhelds?
3
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3answers
591 views

What is RF hash?

Ok, I get that "RF hash" is some sort of slang for "RF interference" (think CB), but does it refer to a particular type or source of interference? Do tell.
3
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2answers
2k views

What does CI-V stand for?

In the context of controlling a radio from a computer, what does CI-V stand for? I've noticed in relationship to a jack as well as USB. For example, from the Icom IC-7300 manual:
11
votes
4answers
43k views

What is the difference between channel & frequency & band in RF?

I am reading about wireless networks basics. I found three terms I cannot find exact definition for: channel, frequency band, frequency. Can anyone give exact definitions for them?
6
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2answers
282 views

I was told to check the cluster. What does that mean and how do I do that?

A comment on this question says to "check the cluster". What does it mean to "check the cluster"? I'm guessing it's a website. I did an internet search and http://www.hamcluster.net/Map.aspx seems to ...
3
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3answers
4k views

What is “Busy Channel Lockout”? Why do I want to control this feature?

I was reading up on a radio review, and it mentioned something I was not familiar with, "Busy Channel Lockout". Unfamiliar with the term, I did an Internet Search, but didn't get back much, and for ...
12
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5answers
20k views

What's the difference between saying “CQ” or “QRZ” in a contest?

I'm listening to (or let's say I'm trying to participate in) a contest (or perhaps Field Day), using SSB. I noticed that a station would, after completing a contact, sometimes say “CQ” and sometimes ...
27
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4answers
4k views

What is a link budget, and how do I make one?

Like the question title says, what is a radio link budget? For what is it useful, and how do I make one?
2
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1answer
167 views

DAB/DAB+ and AAC-LD/AAC-ELD

Does anyone know the protocol compatibility with regard to DAB and Low Delay AAC codecs? Is AAC-LD data or AAC-ELD data compatible with AAC and AAC+ decoding. Or how likely is it that an AAC/AAC+ ...
7
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2answers
10k views

What is a “calling frequency”?

Doing some study for the ham test, I read a question asking about a certain “national calling frequency”. What is a “calling frequency”? What is meant by “calling” in this instance?
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1answer
68 views

Can someone help record a specific radio signal at a specific time to help solve a radio based puzzle? [closed]

I'm not a radio expert and I've never posted on this forum before. My request might also seem odd but hopefully someone can help me. I am pretty much a total layman on this subject so will probably ...
11
votes
1answer
177 views

Is there a special name (and if so what is it) for this flush-style SMA variant?

I have some radios that have a special antenna connector. It looks like an SMA connector, but the dielectric is flush with the end of the connector: rather than recessed the way "normal" SMA ...
0
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1answer
1k views

LoRa Radio RFM96/98 SX1276/8 configuration settings for Longest Range

I have a pair of HopeRF LoRa RFM98 Radio Modems(based on Semtech SX1278) and I want to configure them for the longest range possible, without taking care about any second factor like transmission time ...
37
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6answers
60k views

Why do hams often conclude messages with “73”?

Looking at amateur radio forums and email threads, oftentimes amateur radio operators will use "73" or "73s" where one might otherwise expect to find "Sincerely" or "Regards". Why?
4
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1answer
1k views

Pirate Radio vs Ham Radio

I've recently came across the terms "Pirate Radio" and in the URL of this page, "Ham Radio". What is the difference between these terms? And what is the difference between the transmission of a Pirate ...
9
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4answers
5k views

What's the difference between “minimum SWR” and “resonance”?

Is the point of minimum SWR equivalent to resonance? Exactly what does resonance mean, anyway?
6
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2answers
5k views

“Repeater” vs. “reflector”

In various topics on repeaters, IRLP, D-Star and EchoLink, I see people refer to these 'nodes' (for lack of a better word) as reflectors. A quick Internet search for these terms comes up with all ...
10
votes
1answer
833 views

What does a lightning bolt symbol next to an antenna connector mean?

On the back of my Yaesu FT-897, next to each of the antenna connectors, there are lightning-bolt-ish symbols. What do these mean, and is there something I ought to be doing because of that? I have ...
5
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1answer
3k views
8
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2answers
2k views

What is a fixed digital message forwarding system?

What is a fixed digital message forwarding system? I noticed this on the lower end of the 222MHz allocation in the US but it's not explained on the band chart:
6
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2answers
772 views

Antenna length in relation to lambda length

I'm pretty new with antenna stuff. I'm not sure how to understand antenna length in relation to lambda with dipole antennas. If a simple dipole antenna is lambda/4, has it a total length of lambda/2 (...
5
votes
1answer
281 views

What do hams mean when they refer to “higher bands”

For example, the Ultimate3S kit info page says: Produces 250mW RF output on 30m (lower output on higher bands) Would bands "higher" than 30m mean: bands with higher frequency e.g. 20m/17m/15m? ...
6
votes
1answer
261 views

History and significance of term “lid”

What is the history on the term “lid” when referring to a telegrapher’s capability? How did it originate and what is the significance if any of each letter?