This morning I called VK9MT on FT8, and he was -15 dB at best, -18 dB at worst, but I decoded him. He kept calling CQ even though there were a ton of people responding. I made one mistake (forgot to click on even / first) but someone on the ON4KST Chat helped get me straight fast.
On Top Band I still don’t think VK9MT is hearing all that well – many call him – and his rate is very slow – maybe 1 QSO a minute. I also noticed that with QSB, the QSO’s on FT8 dragged on.
SO my initital exuberance for FT8 as a DXpedition mode is now “not so much”. This is because a good DXpeditioner on CW – and with a decent RX antenna with reasonable noise level can crank out QSO’s much faster.
My entire career has been keeping up on all of the latest in Hardware and software technologies, but there is this truly wonderful feeling I’m having about CW aka Morse Code. It’s a truly digital mode that is so short in it’s exchange, it’s amazing how useful it is after all these years.
Telegraph during Victorian times was the first technical social network, and it is certainly relevant in ham radio today.
Viva el CW!