[aprssig] "Best" packet decoder solution

Lynn W. Deffenbaugh (Mr) ldeffenb at homeside.to
Mon Dec 27 14:00:34 CST 2010

I have seen the KPC-3+/KISS issue discussed several times on multiple 
APRS mailing lists, but my best reference is the direct experience of 
Richard Sharp (KQ4KX) who maintains the WC4PEM digi/IGate network in 
Polk County here in Florida.  WC4PEM is a KPC-3+ running in KISS mode 
and if he doesn't reboot the TNC every week or so (sooner if APRS 
traffic gets heavy), it begins introducing delayed packets into the 
APRS-IS network.  The easiest way to see this is on packets that include 
a timestamp.  The packet will appear once via some other IGate and then 
again via WC4PEM with a 1-5 minute (yes, it has been up to 5 minutes) 
delay.   The problem is only known to exist in KPC-3+, the non-plus and 
other Kantronics units do not seem to have the issue.

I have not experimented with the difference between AGW PE vs PEpro.  I 
only quoted my experience with PEpro because that's what I run with all 
of my testing.  I'm still hoping that the Pro version gets updated to 
catch up with the free version because I need to be able to specify a 
split input and output sound card channels complements of the 
differences in the way Windows 7 handles my audio devices now that I've 
added a Signalink USB.

The Pro version's KAM tone support works really well for me as I'm 
running it on 30m HF side-by-side with APRS Messenger (2100hz) with both 
of them running through an instance of my APRSIS32 for map visualization 
and Igate functions.

Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ - Author of APRSISCE for Windows Mobile and Win32

Stephen H. Smith wrote:
>> I have a KPC-3+ here, but I haven't yet hooked it up to anything for 
>> comparison to the TNCs listed in my previous e-mail.  I haven't made 
>> time for this because apparently the KPC-3+ also has trouble when 
>> operated long term in KISS mode which is my preferred TNC interface.
> Where have you encountered KISS issues with the KPC3?   I have a KAM 
> (VHF side is essentially identical to a KPC3 while the HF side uses 
> two independent switched-capacitor tone detector channels like classic 
> RTTY "TU"s) -and- a KPC3+ in my ham "super server"  VHF/HF  
> igate-UIwebserver-APRN-Echolink  setup.   Picture and details here:
> <http://wa8lmf.net/EPIAserver>
> Both run in KISS mode and have run for months at a time without any 
> problems.    The KAM in KISS mode provides two logical KISS data 
> streams (one for HF, one for VHF)  on a single physical serial port.  
> They are then separated by AGWpe into separate AGW logical ports which 
> are then used by different copies of UIview.
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
> Finally, you say you found AGWpe Pro to be the best performer.  Have 
> you compared it to the freeware version?    I had assumed the main 
> difference in the "Pro" version was the fancier GUI.   Is there an 
> actual difference in the decode performance?
> I have been considering buying the Pro version, but mainly because 
> it's HF mode uses the standard 1600/1800 Hz  KAM/TNC2  HF tones 
> instead of the 2100/2300 tones of the freeware version.  (The higher 
> tones can present problems with the limited passband of many HF SSB 
> transceivers.)
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