Welcome to San Antonio’s digital voice resource for local ham radio operators. The goal of this site is to be educational and informative for all things revolving around digital voice. Do you currently live in San Antonio? Are you visiting from out of town? The San Antonio area is growing rapidly with digital voice systems. Prior to 2017 there were only a handful of Yaesu Fusion repeaters. Within a years time digital voice has exploded and now offers several DMR and D-Star repeaters covering much of the area and continues to grow.
A unique digital voice system is installed that is not found in many other cities, yet. An agnostic digital voice system that cross-modes any of the 3 digital modes. Fusion, DMR, D-Star can now talk together in real-time. Do you have Yaesu Fusion, but your friend or family member has DMR or D-Star or vice versa? There are multiple repeaters in town tied to a system that will cross these boundaries for you. More information HERE.
Different Digital Modes
NXDN (Kenwood calls it NexEdge, Icom calls it IDAS but they are the same technology)
|Mode||Analog||D-Star||DMR||Yaesu System Fusion|
|Networks||IRLP, ECO-LINK, All-Star||REF, XLX, DCS||cBridge, Brandmeister, DMR-MARC, Many others...||Wires-X, YSF, FCS|
|Server Nomenclature||Reflector||Reflector||Talk Group||Room, Reflector|
|Network interaction||DTMF||"UR" Field||Contact or channel selection||Dx Button, DTMF|
|Signal Validation||TONE, Tone-Squelch||RPT 1 (only for repeaters)||Color Code||N/A|
|Modulation||FM||GMSK||4-state FSK with TDMA||C4FM|
|Verbal ID Required?||Yes||No||Yes (if your radio doesnt support "Talker Alias")||No|
Why Digital radio?
It’s a natural progression of radio. Consider it evolution of RF rather than change. Way back in the day, AM was the defacto modulation type. AM was noisy, but it got the job done. In 1933 the FM modulation type was invented and introduced into Radio. FM solved the noisy issues that was prominent in AM. For decades FM ruled the radio world and still does in many cases, but digital is here to overtake the modulation throne. Since digital is basically a transmission of data rather than raw voice, it can transmit more in a payload when a radio PTT is pressed. Things like user identifiers, GPS positions, Messages, and even data like images and text files are just some of the benefits. Here is a great article on analog vs digital.
Here is what the different digital modes sound like. (from http://www.w2sjw.com/radio_sounds.html)
|Feature||D-Star||Yaesu System Fusion||DMR|
|Link directly to users (Networked callsign routing)||Yes||No||Yes|
|Link to repeaters directly||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Text Messaging||No||Sort of, Must be in GM mode.||Yes|
|GPS bearing of RX station on radio||Yes||Yes||No|
|Vendor locked||Yes, sort of, Icom and 1 Kenwood radio||Yes, Yaesu only||No|
|Auto switches between Analog and Digital||Yes, sort of, after ~10seconds||Yes, Instantly||Yes, only with certain model radios|
|TX/RX Computer data||Yes||Not yet.||Only certain commercial vendors and radio models|
|Can build your own network||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Can work on HF||Yes||Yes||No (~900 mile limit)|