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15 votes

Why do operators mention the band when calling CQ on phone?

I have a scanner capable of HF receive, multiple HF receivers, and several HF SDR transceivers capable of receiving on more than one amateur band slice simultaneously. Lots of contest stations run ...
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14 votes
Accepted

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

This became clear to me after a bit of time to think, but it wasn't at all clear on initially jumping in. It helps to know the formal definitions of the codes used: CQ is “Calling any station”. The ...
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13 votes

Is it conventional to sign using the phonetic alphabet like people do in the military or aviation?

The choice of using phonetics ('alpha, bravo, charlie, …') versus plain alphabet sounds ('aye, bee, see, …') should be, and in my limited experience usually is, made based on how likely the recipient ...
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11 votes

Why do operators mention the band when calling CQ on phone?

It may have served a purpose in the past, with less filtering in transmitters and receivers, no digital frequency displays &c, e.g. to avoid mistaking a harmonic on a higher band for the ...
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10 votes
Accepted

What does "THREE ALPHA in Virginia" mean?

First, some background on general amateur radio procedure: Field Day "is not a contest", but acts a lot like one. In any contest contact, the "exchange" is whatever information is communicated, ...
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9 votes

Why do operators mention the band when calling CQ on phone?

Apart from historical reasons it's also a filler. When calling CQ on SSB you probably want to stretch out your transmission a bit because that's what you need to get heard. In theory you could just ...
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  • 131
8 votes
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Why aren’t emergency services using callsigns?

… Why don’t these unencrypted FM emergency services seem to use any call signs … ? They aren't required to and don't find it useful in their procedures. Also, they don't have call signs in the sense ...
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6 votes

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

As said by other answerers, it's typically the station announcing 'I'm ready for more contacts at this time.' It doesn't necessarily have to be a DX station, but any station that is attracting a lot ...
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  • 161
6 votes

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

During contests, a popular station (say DX) has a pileup with lots of stations trying to make contact. A station will often merely say QRZ for picking up someone from the pileup. Thus, in this I am ...
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  • 2,868
6 votes

Why are contest signal reports always "59" or "599"?

"If the report never changes, why do contest rules still require signal reports, when cutting out phony reports would speed things up?" This question comes up frequently, among contesters (e....
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6 votes

Why are contest signal reports always "59" or "599"?

Signal reports are sent because the contest may require them. Every contest I can think of requires some exchange of information, and a signal report may or may not be among the required information. ...
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6 votes

Why aren’t emergency services using callsigns?

Why don’t these unencrypted FM emergency services seem to use any call signs or ham codes? They are required to identify periodically and they do. That is the Morse code you heard. Emergency ...
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  • 276
5 votes

Is it conventional to sign using the phonetic alphabet like people do in the military or aviation?

In fact, hams use phonetic alphabet for their call signs (and also QTH) most of the time. The reason is simple - when you are establishing a QSO you don't know how well the other operator hears you. ...
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4 votes

Why aren’t emergency services using callsigns?

who would know I wasn’t just some emergency/government service? There's national regulations agencies that monitor the spectrum, and come when someone notifies them of an interference. They can fine ...
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4 votes

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

The answer is very simple: a contest station "running" a frequency calls "QRZ?" because it is faster than calling CQ and giving the call sign. The station running the frequency isn't trying to get ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Is it possible to have multiple people talking on the same radio channel at the same time?

if a number of these devices are transmitting on a specific channel, will a receiver walkie talkie be able to hear all the signals coming from the ground sensors? The exact result depends on the ...
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4 votes

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

Frequency and wavelength of a wave are related: the frequency times the wavelength equals the speed of the wave, in this case the speed of light. For HF, the frequency in megahertz times the ...
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4 votes

Boosting Mobile Phone Reception

There are a couple of options. If your phone supports WiFi calling and your provider allows it, I strongly recommend getting WiFi in the shack if you don’t have it already. If you don’t have it, and ...
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3 votes

Why do operators mention the band when calling CQ on phone?

The question asked: I've heard a lot of CQ calls from other hams on [HF] phone, and it seems that a large portion of hams routinely mentions the band being called on within the call itself. Henry ...
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  • 7,495
3 votes

Why do operators mention the band when calling CQ on phone?

We can come up with any number of reasons, perhaps historical or utilitarian, which aren't invalid. But I think the primary reason is saying nothing but "CQ" more than six times leads to an ...
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3 votes

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

If you are a new ham, you need to go to the https://arrl.org web site and get a listing of the ham bands that they publish. You can find them on their site by searching for ham bands. Print out one of ...
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3 votes
Accepted

Why are contest signal reports always "59" or "599"?

The RS(T) reporting system has always been arbitrary. The original intent was for the receiving operator to estimate readability, signal strength, and tone by ear; there never have been universally-...
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  • 8,922
3 votes

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

QRZ seems to be commonly used to mean “Someone other than the station I just worked, please call” This is the way I always understood it. but while trying to research this answer I found one ...
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  • 869
3 votes

Is it conventional to sign using the phonetic alphabet like people do in the military or aviation?

Yes, the standard phonetic alphabet is used by radio amateurs. Of course, some people use alternatives in some circumstances - but we are required to know the standard phonetic alphabet.
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  • 4,291
3 votes

Is it conventional to sign using the phonetic alphabet like people do in the military or aviation?

Though this may seem somewhat counter-intuitive at first, I think it is also worth pointing out that certain call signs are better understood when the letters are pronounced together instead of the ...
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  • 31
2 votes

Is the NATO/ICAO or ITU figure pronunciation more common?

3, 4, 5, and 9 to "tree", "fower", "fife", and "niner", respectively, Those pronunciations are not used on Amateur Radio.
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1 vote
Accepted

Repeater autopatch ("phone patch"): which countries use this?

Phone patches (autopatches) are not legal in the UK. The restriction is largely because a phone patch allows you to contact non-licensed people using amateur radio. Of course, in an actual emergency,...
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  • 4,291
1 vote

How do I increase my phone intelligibility?

From this webpage: TL;DR: Get rid of the audio below 300-500 Hz*, and then use audio processing (compression) to raise the average power. *This is accomplished by: Choosing a suitable microphone, ...
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