Android and Ham Radio

#19
The Kenwood 710 does have Kiss mode tnc built in so yes it will allow you to send an APRS message from inside the app.
I have thought about this here and there and it occurs to me that it's altogether possible that the Yaesu doesn't let you access the TNC is because...well...maybe there's no "TNC" perse in the radio. There might be some direct encoding of the APRS messages and a modulation stage.

IIRC the Kenwood 710's APRS magic is the VFO head. The rest of the radio is pretty standard V71ish stuff. I seem to remember people hooking up D710 VFO's to baofengs.

It would be pretty awesome to just have a full android TNC implemention. At this point, I'm not sure why one couldn't implement the mod/demod in software?

Supposedly the built in GPS receiver in the 400XDR has been upgraded.
I've heard that too, it would be a welcome fix for sure. The 400DR's not that bad, it's just that it seems to have similar performance to GPS receivers from over a decade back - slow cold starts on every startup, no persisting of ephemeris. If I have a clear view of the sky, it's fine. But mounted inside a vehicle seems to make it really unhappy.
 
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DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
#20
I believe what you may have in mind APRSdroid already does. It's got an AFSK modem in software (based on the jsoundmodem project) so you only need to run audio in/out strictly speaking.

https://github.com/nogy/jsoundmodem

I think the trick is keying the radio to transmit, which is only possible using VOX that way. The Mobilinkd and stand-alone TNCs can physically key the PTT on the radio. It's also possible to link the client with the radio using Bluetooth with Mobilinkd, which is why I think it's popular.

If you're interested in another AX.25 modem software, have a look at Dire Wolf.

https://github.com/wb2osz/direwolf
 
#23
Shame to buy a $600 mobile radio and have to use an external modem because the internal modem can not be used to transmit from an external source. Better off to just buy a good dual band mobile radio if you do that. Just make sure it has mini din 6 connector for audio signals. I have interfaced other radios that did not mini din 6 port and it is not as neat an interface.
 

DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
#24
I like the integration of APRS and generally like Yaesu radios but lacking a full TNC is a disappointment. If you want position beacons, send/recv a few messages and want to feed other stations' positions to display on something, e.g. a typical ExPo use case, they'll do everything you need. It's just becomes limiting not having command line & serial access to tinker more.
 
#25
I like the integration of APRS and generally like Yaesu radios but lacking a full TNC is a disappointment. If you want position beacons, send/recv a few messages and want to feed other stations' positions to display on something, e.g. a typical ExPo use case, they'll do everything you need. It's just becomes limiting not having command line & serial access to tinker more.
Just so everyone understands about sending messages with the Yaesu. You can send messages via the User Interface in the radio but you can not send messages via external apps or control.

I really think they miss the mark on this radio and hope in the future to see more options in a later radio. For me it gave me partial external aprs, an additional mode of operation (Fusion C4FM FMDA), and bluetooth hands free.

The Kenwood gives me full external aprs usage but lacks any additional digital voice modes and most important lacks bluetooth interface.

With many states passing distracted driver laws, bluetooth handsfree becomes more and more important. Some states have exempted ham radio operators some haven't. That still doesn't mean if we are exempt that we wouldn't be stopped.
 
#26
The Kenwood gives me full external aprs usage but lacks any additional digital voice modes and most important lacks bluetooth interface.
The argument being pushed is for Kenwood to take the TMD710 and add in DStar like the TH-74 handheld. You get the best of both worlds really fast. The sad part is Kenwood does not think there is a market for it. The DStar community disagrees because the Kenwood gear sounds much better than the Icom gear, and with a full TNC and real APRS that could be a powerful mobile and base platform. The only issue hams would have is cost. Kenwood really set the price too high on the handheld and its holding back sales I think. Technologically they did it all just right though (except for the satellite guys who wish it had 2 independent VFOs.
 

DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
#27
I wish one of the big guys would embrace DMR. I removed my FTM-350 to install a Connect Systems CS-800D (which is V/U analog & DMR but only single receive). To me the ideal radio is a VHF/UHF dual receive, APRS with DMR. Basically if the FTM-400 did DMR rather than Fusion that's what I would have bought. D-Star is fine but I never embraced it and got DMR radios when I did start doing digital because that's what everyone was using around here. It's great if Icom and Kenwood keep offering D-Star and there's plenty of people who use it but as near as I can tell the number of people using Fusion is actually small, so I don't see the point of two amateur-specific digital modes when DMR and P25 exist in the commercial world as an alternative. It just adds more fractures to the mess that already exists.
 
#28
How does the DV4Mini license their DMR implementation? I just feel like we should be able to homebrew this stuff at this point. :)

Or is it just a matter of putting an AMBE chip on a breakout board and the rest is already open source?
 
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DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
#29
How does the DV4Mini license their DMR implementation? I just feel like we should be able to homebrew this stuff at this point. :)
I think the only part that is really proprietary is DVSI's AMBE voice codec, which is used in most (maybe all?) digital systems. I'm not familiar with the DV4Mini but I assume it's either using those parts or has reversed engineered patented & copyright IP. Everything else is somewhere between open source and freely licensed from JARL, Yaesu, etc. The DMR protocol is an ETSI standard.

http://www.etsi.org/technologies-clusters/technologies/digital-mobile-radio

Motorola's MOTOTRBO is an extension of DMR, which is what most commercial surplus radios use. For example, I still have VXD radios, which are repackaged Motorola XPR models. Motorola added the IP layer to interconnect repeaters, trunking and some privacy stuff.

From a ham user standpoint the encryption stuff isn't legal anyway. The fundamental part, time slots, framing, packet definitions, that's all ETSI standards.

There's a global Motorola-based (using C-Bridges to interconnect) amateur network called DMR-MARC, which was what started it all and still is the framework for talkgroups and the database of user IDs. And if I understand it correctly, the IP Site Connect has been worked around using Brandmeister. So it's really just the AMBE stuff that's closed.

And why Yaesu decided to use it when that could have been the *one* thing they could have done differently is beyond me. But then I can't say how difficult it is to develop a new codec that works as well while also being different enough not to infringe on DVSI, so it may not be easily done.
 
#30
I wish one of the big guys would embrace DMR. I removed my FTM-350 to install a Connect Systems CS-800D (which is V/U analog & DMR but only single receive). To me the ideal radio is a VHF/UHF dual receive, APRS with DMR. Basically if the FTM-400 did DMR rather than Fusion that's what I would have bought. D-Star is fine but I never embraced it and got DMR radios when I did start doing digital because that's what everyone was using around here. It's great if Icom and Kenwood keep offering D-Star and there's plenty of people who use it but as near as I can tell the number of people using Fusion is actually small, so I don't see the point of two amateur-specific digital modes when DMR and P25 exist in the commercial world as an alternative. It just adds more fractures to the mess that already exists.
Icom doesn’t do DMR they do NXDN. Kenwood does DMR on the commercial side. Yaesu not sure because they were/are affiliated with Mototola i think.


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