This is one of the most important concepts in ham radio… the relationship between transmitted power and received signal strength.
Sadly, many hams aren’t familiar with this topic and falsely believe that buying a 1,500 amplifier will make their signal LOUD.
This weekend I worked some SSB QRP on the hill at Bobcat Ridge. I don’t do a lot of voice-mode QRP since it’s less efficient than CW or one of the Digital modes. Still, I did make several 2,000 mile contacts while running only 5 watts from my Elecraft KX2. The antenna was a SOTABEAMS dipole. All contacts were made on the 20m band.
What you DON’T see in this video are the many, many times I answered someone’s CQ only to have them not hear me at all. This is just how it is when working QRP voice-mode – especially in a contest when the station calling CQ has other stations overlapping their calling frequency. The QRM from other operators makes it harder to pick out a weak signal.
I got the last Mountain Topper QRP radio of 2015 from LNR Precision (according to Ryan).
I’ve been having a ball with this gem for the past 10 days. In this video, I tell you about the radio and then show you how to use nearly every feature. It’s a long video that I made for those who may be interested in this jewel-like little rig… which should be EVERYONE!
One of my favorite things to do in ham radio is to take a QRP rig with me on a bike ride. I’ve got several places where I go on my bicycle and set up a station.
This evening, I rode to one of my favorite spots and worked K2H (VA) and N4LB (TX) before packing it back up and heading home.
I used my Elecraft KX3 with a Sotabeams 20m/40m linked dipole antenna.
My bike with a portable camp chair and my radio gear stuffed into a pannier.
Here’s what it looked like after setup. The antenna was hoisted up into a tree and tied off to the handlebars of my bike. The KX3 has a Begali Adventure attached… what a fun combo!