[aprssig] Success with the new wide-n paradigm in Central NY

Brian Webster bwebster at wirelessmapping.com
Tue Jul 5 09:14:35 CDT 2005

   I finally upgraded our club APRS digi from an XIJ TheNet chip to a smart
APRS Ui-digi ROM last week. I had always suspected that since our old one
was a dumb digi and it could hear so many other Wide digi's that it was not
working well and causing QRM. There were times at the site where the
frequency never went silent. Prior to the new wide-n solution we were going
to move the site to a lower location to improve the mobile packet success
rate and decrease the amount of other digi's heard. We opted to try the new
settings first. All I can say is WOW what a difference. We eliminated wide
and relay completely. Over the last few days I have counted at least 11
other Wide digi's heard direct from ours. We are located in rural central NY
and out local traffic is limited to less than a dozen APRS users. Now that
our digi is not causing so much of a network problem due to no call sign
substitution we can see many more mobile stations. I looked this morning and
I can see mobiles in NYC, CT, a few in PA and a couple in MA not to mention
the all of the mobiles in Upstate NY (and yes most of them are only running
wide2-2). We have a couple of truckers who pass through here two or three
times a week and they have already seen an improvement in their reliability
in our area.
    So why am I telling everyone this, one to get people to understand that
upgrading these settings will help more than you realize, and two, you never
really know the damage of an overloaded network unless you sit at the digi
site and try to decode packets in conjunction with the occupied airtime.
    To all the digi users and owners that were within direct earshot of ours
(this covers at least 5 states and 2 provinces), I apologize for not doing
this much sooner. To all those who think it's not a big deal, try the
upgrade and see for yourself.

Brian, N2KGC sysop for W2RGI

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