The Spectrum Monitor — May, 2018

Stories you’ll find in our May, 2018 issue:

TSM Reviews: FlexRadio 6400M All-Mode HF+6 Transceiver
By Mark Haverstock K8MSH

While computer control has become integrated into amateur radio transceivers in recent years, there is still a substantial faction of amateur radio operators who want to hold onto the traditional buttons and knobs of their radios. FlexRadio’s new additions to the Signature Series give amateurs both options. The base Flex 6400 model is computer controlled, but they’ve also created an M version (M for Maestro) with traditional knobs, buttons and a touch display screen as well. The 6400M is an improved version of the 6300, with better specs, processors, and costs $500 less—at a price tag of $2000. It borrows features from both the 6300 and 6500 (both of which were recently discontinued). Note that the 6400 and 6400M models are identical, with the exception of the Maestro control interface. But, you’ll need to find a little extra table space at the operator’s position—it is bigger than a breadbox, with both the basic 6400 and the M versions have the same footprint and measure 7 x 14 x 13.125 inches. Mark unpacks the details of this modern and very capable HF+6 transceiver

Giving Undersea Cable its Just Deserts – 160 Years Past Due
By Richard Fisher KI6SN

Marconi got the hoopla for the first trans-Atlantic wireless communication. His transmission of the Morse letter S sped through the airwaves between the Canadian maritime province of Newfoundland and Cornwall, England, in the waning days of 1901. But 43 years earlier – in 1858 – it was New York businessman Cyrus Field who was the impetus behind the remarkable achievement of the first telegraphy Communications between two continents—Newfoundland to Ireland—under the sea. Why no such accolades for Cyrus in reciting the technological achievements in communication of the mid-19th and early-20th centuries, 160 years ago, no less? Richard dives deep to find an amazing web of undersea cables stretching around the entire globe—an vital part of modern communications.

TSM Reviews: Yaesu FTM-750DR VHF/UHF Transceiver
By Cory GB Sickles WA3UVV

Yaesu recently introduced and is now shipping another System Fusion transceiver – the FTM-7250 mobile. As this month’s installment of Digitally Speaking covers connectors and genders, perhaps the simplest way to describe the ‘7250 is for you to imagine that the FTM-3200 (VHF) and FTM-3207 (UHF) monobanders got together and had a baby. With the April release of the FTM-7250, Yaesu now offers a total of eight radios, with an even split between entry-level transceivers with “core” features and those with advanced-level feature sets. Think about that for a moment. Eight radios, plus two repeaters and two different networking concepts. That’s a fairly diverse selection of equipment – not to mention the various means of third-party support for this DV methodology – that is only four years old, from the time of its full release.

Free-to-Air Satellite-TV List Update
By Mike Kohl

Free-to-Air (FTA) satellite-TV enthusiasts sometimes have a challenge keeping track of satellite names and positions. Throughout the years aerospace companies merge, creating new names for their fleet, or launch a new series of satellites, reflecting advances in technology. This month, Mike has created an updated list for North American FTA viewers covering eastern Atlantic arc satellites from 1.0 degrees West longitude, across our domestic satellite arc, and extending to 166 East, which can be received by those with a 3 to 4 meter C-band dish from unobstructed locations on the West Coast. In addition to updating the list of names to reflect mergers and acquisitions in the industry and new satellites replacing old, Mike gives you tips on aligning fixed and steerable dishes.

Scanning America
By Dan Veeneman
Sublette County, Wyoming; Washoe County, Nevada

Federal Wavelengths
By Chris Parris
USS Portland HYDRA System

By Larry Van Horn N5FPW
Military Base Profile: Edwards AFB (KEDW)

Utility Planet
By Hugh Stegman NV6H
Doing Battle with STANAG 4285

Shortwave Utility Logs
Compiled by Hugh Stegman and Mike Chace-Ortiz

VHF and Above
By Joe Lynch N6CL
West Point Cadets Launch Two Balloons

Digitally Speaking
By Cory Sickles WA3UVV
Goes Inta / Goes Outta

Amateur Radio Insights
By Kirk Kleinschmidt NT0Z
Feed Line Ferrite Chokes—Noise Reduction that Beats the Best DSP?

Radio 101
By Ken Reitz KS4ZR
Gospell AM/FM/SW/DRM Receiver

Radio Propagation
By Tomas Hood NW7US
The Switch in May

The World of Shortwave Listening
By Jeff White, Secretary-Treasurer NASB
Shortwave Broadcasters and Listeners to Meet in Indiana

The Shortwave Listener
By Fred Waterer
Voice of Greece, Radio Tirana, and Country Music on Shortwave

Amateur Radio Astronomy
By Stan Nelson KB5VL

The Longwave Zone
By Kevin O’Hern Carey WB2QMY
Bill Oliver—Quiet Giant of Longwave

Adventures in Radio Restorations
By Rich Post KB8TAD
A Not-so-Scarce Hallicrafters: Model SX-99

The Spectrum Monitor is available in PDF format which can be read on any desktop, laptop, iPad®, Kindle® Fire, or other device capable of opening a PDF file. Annual subscription is $24. Individual monthly issues are available for $3 each.

Ken Reitz, KS4ZR, is publisher and managing editor of The Spectrum Monitor. Contact him at [email protected].

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