Thursday, 13 October 2016

Icom IC-7300 price drop

Lots of radioamateurs that don't want to spend all their money on their radiohobby are waiting for a expected price drop of the Icom IC-7300 including me. I know it's too early and the radio is still too new. But with a expected follow up SDR from Icom the IC-7610 I think the radio will be much cheaper. Price here in the Netherlands has dropped down with 30 euro, a new one will cost you 1339 euro now. I already saw the radio sold second hand on the dutch marktplaats (kind of eBay) for as much as 1150 euro for a 3 month old IC-7300. I think that's too much considering you can almost buy it new in the UK that price. Since the british pound has made a downfall compared to the euro it is now interesting to buy a IC-7300 in the UK I think. Several HAM stores in the UK sell it for 1049,95 GBP. Which is converted to euro 1160,55 and considerable cheaper as here in the Netherlands. Buying it via internet however is not interesting as you have to pay shipping and custom taxes importing the radio. But if you  dare to make a trip to England to get a few of these radios you can make some extra money or fund your own one . It's just a idea!

Update: It seems no problem to order one in the UK as you don't have to pay extra taxes within Europe. Thanks to some of my readers comments! So, this could really be interesting. Sorry for those living in the UK but I think it's just a matter of waiting till the british pound is dropping any further. You really can get a bargain out of this...

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

WSPR DXCC active and needed

When starting with WSPR in 2009 I immidiatly got the  idea to see how many DXCC I could reach with only 1 Watt and a simple antenna. The ultimate goal of course is to reach 100 DXCC. Now, 7 years later I have not reached my goal yet. It seems not to be easy and it's not the propagation or my power. With only 1 Watt I can easily reach all the DX I want around the world even on longpath. I already have proof of that. The problem only is that there are not 100 DXCC on WSPR. That makes this list even more difficult compared to reaching 100 DXCC with 5W QRP or even with QRO. It's a matter of time, sometimes you see a "new" one in the activity list and then you have to be on WSPR and try just like I did last weekend. I'm not on WSPR every day 24/7 like some stations are. It certainly helps if I was. But I don't like the idea of having a WSPR system 24/7, that means you have the system online also when no one is at home and besides that it costs a lot of electricity. For me radio is just a hobby and I don't want to spend money to just keep a system on for just a few more DXCC on WSPR. Anyway, I kept a eye on the activity list and found some stations I need. Sometimes they are on, sometimes not. I still have 19 to go for 100 and I hope I will reach it before I have my 10 year anniversary on WSPR.

Stations seen in the activity list and needed:

C91PA (Mozambique), KP4MD (Puerto Rico last year, currently only seen on 2m/70cm), VR2UIF (Hong Kong), E51WL (North Cook Isl.), ZF1EJ (Cayman Isl. currently on 475KHz), YC0MLC (Indonesia). 

If I reached them all I would be on 87 DXCC.
Time to continue the hunt...

Monday, 10 October 2016

The hunt for new WSPR DXCC

It has been a while I hunted for new DXCC on WSPR. Sometimes it takes time before new DXCC show up on WSPR. A new one would be E51WL (North Cook Isl.) but so far he didn't copy much from Europe as far as I can see. However I have the feeling DX will be better again this time of the year. You can see that in PE1ITR's WSPR challenge too, the lines are rising! I saw 9K2/VO1DZA in the activity list on many bands at the same time. I guess he's receiving SDR style. So I aimed my 1 Watt arrow on him for a new DXCC. But it wasn't that easy. After more then 48 hours I was finally spotted on 20m. Only 2 times but enough for a new one in my list (nr. 81). Now, thinking about E51WL, I think best band would be 30m. But so far he spotted only JA, VK and ZL. So, I checked the activity list and found VR2UIF (Hong Kong), it would be a new one as well but see the same for him, spotted only JA, VK and ZL. Anyway, I keep an eye on them. What I find strange is that there are not many stations active on WSPR from south en central America. I did spot some of them in the past but also in the activity list you will not find many. Is it the propagation? Well I don't think so. But WSPR seems not to be populair there yet.