Ham Radio Now News Feed

The audio version of our TV programs for and about Amateur Radio (Ham Radio). The video version is hosted at www.HamRadioNow.tv (and, to be totally honest, on YouTube). Our shows come in three flavors: Talk Shows, Seminars/Forums, and mini-documentaries. Sorry for the mash-up, but any episode may be in one (or more) of those categories.
  1. David W0DHG talks to Jim Wades WB8SWI and Joe Ames W3JY of Radio Relay International about the organization, it's beginnings, how it works, and why. Radio Relay International can be found at http://radio-relay.org/

  2. Dan KB6NU, Marty N6VI(in studio guest!), and Gary KN4AQ join David W0DHG for the first show recorded from the West Coast Studio.

    We talk about the new ARRL proposal to the FCC to add HF privileges for Tech class licenses. We also talk about the Hudson Division Town Hall and MyARRLvoice....

    Gary plays several clips lifted from the Hudson Division Town Hall webinar (February 2018) in which Director Mike Lisenco N2YBB makes some strong (and unsupported) statements about the censure of fellow Director Dick Norton N6AA, at one point accusing Norton of creating a "toxic environment" at the Board. You can hear a full, unedited recording of that Town Hall (with noise reduction to eliminate a loud hum on Lisenco's audio) at the HamRadioNow web site for Episode 393: 


  3. Curmudgeon hams will rant about how professional Emcomm agencies see no value in ham radio. And in some areas that's true.

    The ARES forum from the Yuma AZ Hamfest - Roozy Moabery W1EH, ARRL DEC for part of the sprawling Los Angeles area, talks about how hams there have created a great working relationship with their served agencies.

    This is a slide-show talk, but the slides are all text headlines for the topics Roozy covers, so the RADIO RATING is still A.

  4. Dick Norton N6AA, the ARRL SW Division Director, is at the center of the dust-up (Firestorm?) at the ARRL Board of Directors. He's the director who was censured in a special Board Meeting last fall for what the Board said were inappropriate comments at the Visalia DX convention the previous spring. He's also the Director that Hudson Division Director Mike Lisenco N2YBB said was partly responsible for a 'toxic environment' at the League. Lisenco's comments came during a Hudson Division web Town Hall in early 2018, with a link from this QRZ.com discussion. (Note that the audio recording of that webinar is pretty bad, but it's also pretty interesting if you can tough it out.)

    In this episode, Dick Norton discussed his censure and the ARRL Board Code of Conduct at the ARRL Forum at the Yuma AZ Hamfest in February. HamRadioNow's host David Goldenberg W0DHG recorded the session.

    Radio Rating: A

  5. Mark Brown N4BCD is the new chairman of the Huntsville Hamfest. A little birdie (named Michael Kalter) told him to cross the street and talk to that Gary guy for some free publicity, so we caught up on the latest from what's probably the #3 fest in the US after Dayton and Orlando.

    Mark takes over after the passing of Charlie Emerson N4OKL, who we described as "the benevolent dictator of the Huntsville Hamfest" back in HamRadioNow Episode 29


  6. Sunday morning was the 'drop-by' time for HamRadioNow, apparently. Gary looked up from the laptop where he was working on the HRN website to see QRZ.com founder Fred Lloyd AA7BQ standing there. So of course, let's do a show!

    We just got started when the Dayton Hamvention's media guy Michael Kalter W8CI waked by. Both Michael and Fred were time-limited (so, OK, wrong show, guys), but they generously gave us what they could, and probably a little more. Thanks!


  7. The full title is Florida Amateur Spectrum Management Assn., or FASM.

    Last year, Bryan Fields W9CR led a coalition of dissatisfied repeater owners and members of the Florida Repeater Council in a successful effort to take control of that organization. There was some conflict, but eventually Bryan's group prevailed. The changed the name and re-incorporated. Now they have to make good on their pledge to provide better coordination service. Bryan explains how.

    Radio Rating: A.

  8. The call signs are: WA4YL, AC4YL and AG4YL. So what do you think this show might be about? Dawn, Cathrine and Melanie had just given the YL Forum at Orlando, and Gary invited them to keep going on the show.


  9. Bruce Perens K6BP. Pretty sure we don't need to say any more.


  10. Gary takes you on a video tour of the Orlando HamCation, and... what? This is just audio? Yeah, you're gonna miss something. But it's more or less narrated, and we're giving it a RADIO RATING of B.

    Then we get a surprise guest. Fan of the show N1LGQ stopped by to chat, and we put him on the air.

  11. New AMSAT President Joe Spier K6WAO joins Gary for a wide-ranging discussion of all things AMSAT.

    RADIO RATING: A. Nothing to see here. Move along (and play the audio).

  12. HRN Host Gary KN4AQ scrambled to set up a new SIB* for the Orlando HamCation. He thought it was all working before he took it apart and hauled it to the 'fest. 

    He didn't.

    But the show must go on. Of after swatting bugs (the system kind, not the Florida kind... the HamCation isn't infested...) Thursday night and early Friday morning, Gary pushed the LIVE button, and Jason Johnston KC4HWB from HamRadio2.0 helped him launch this hamfest's series of shows.

    Most of the problems were video related, and while you'll hear about them, you won't see them. You also won't see that the whole show is out of sync.

    The subsequent shows worked better, after Gary beat on the system a little more. OK, a lot more.

    RADIO RATING: A. All these Orlando shows are Talking Heads in the SIB, so you don't need no stinking (out of sync) video.

    *Studio In a Booth

  13. From the archives of Amateur Radio//Video News...

    Digital Voice for Amateur Radio was the most complex of the three documentaries that HamRadioNow's Gary Pearce KN4AQ produced for DVD, before starting the online show. In 2007, Gary traveled to Alabama and Dallas in one trip, Chicago and St. Louis in another, and Washington DC in a third to gather interviews and footage of what was then just emerging as Digital Voice systems for Amateur Radio. The program was edited and released on DVD in 2008.

    The DV modes included an HF mode called WinDRM (which evolved to today's FreeDV), and VHF/UHF modes D-STAR and P-25. 

    Of course, these modes have evolved since this program was produced, and newer modes like DMR, Yaesu System Fusion, and NXDN have been developed. Consider this program a snapshot in the early history of Amateur Radio Digital Voice. It's certainly not a current tutorial on operating those modes today.

    Radio Rating: C- at best. This was a video documentary, and while there is a lot of talking, most of the pictures you're missing are equipment in operation, locations, and a few graphics. You'll miss a lot, but since there's so much information, you'll learn a lot, too. [The Radio Rating is our estimate of how much you'll get from the program audio without the video. It's not a rating of the overall program. Those are always A+]

  14. David and Gary catch up on the final details of all the proposals and revisions that are going into the ARRL Board of Directors meeting this weekend.

    Radio Rating: A


  15. Oh Noooo... another two-hour plus episode :-(

    Is it too late to tell you that the important meat of this show runs a scant 90 minutes. Get in at the 7:45 mark, and you'll be done about 93 minutes. The last 45 is just David and Gary goofing around.

    In that 90 minutes we review what's been going on with the ARRL, from the Code of Conduct to the proposed revisions to the Bylaws and Articles of Association. We look at a new group that's formed to protest some of the ARRL Board's actions. And mostly we read some detailed responses to inquiries that Gary and others sent to some of the Directors. They're not coming on the shows yet, but they are being more responsive than we saw initially (though, as Roanoke Division Director Dr. Jim Boehner N2ZZ noted, those responses won't satisfy many critics). 

    That new group is called myARRLvoice. Some members of the 'steering committee' for the group are former Board members who could not speak in opposition to League policies until their terms expired on January 1. Now they can. Their web site will have links to the documents we reference in the show.

    Radio Rating: A+. As usual, a few web sites, but we don't even put the text we're reading on the screen (Gary didn't have time to format it). [The 'Radio Rating' does not measure the quality of the program content. It's our guess as to how much you lose if you aren't watching the video of the show].

  16. Hal Tourley W8HC is our tour guide for this preview of the 3Y0Z Bouvet Island DXpedition, where 20 top DXpeditioners will travel to the most remote spot of land on Earth to warm up from the brutal winter we're having in North America.

    Radio Rating: B+. We've got some pictures and maps from the DXpedition website, so if you can visit there sometime soon, you're all set. (The Radio Rating is our estimate of how well you're understand the program from just the audio track, without the video.)

  17. The ARRL has yet another proposal coming to the January Board Meeting — a fairly extensive revision to the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws with some curious changes in how the board can remove a member and a DirectorCQ is pointing it out, but they've got their own trouble getting issues printed. And our friend Dan KB6NU has details on his Blog. David and Gary review the review.

    Then they talk about the state of and future of HamRadioNow as Gary plans his escape.


  18. David and Gary meander around several topics and eventually land on the proposal by ARRL Hudson Director Mike Lisenco N2YBB to confer voting privileges in board meetings on the League President and three Vice Presidents. We're told that Mike will submit the proposal as a motion at the January ARRL Board Meeting.

    And there are cats.

    Radio Rating: A. You won't miss anything except the cats, and David's UFO.

  19. From the title, you might expect 2017 DCC Banquet speaker Tom McDermott N5EG to just list all the specialties that make up ham Radio, from ATV to DX, Repeaters to QRP. But that's not the direction he takes. Tom's looking at the leading edge of technology as it applies now, and will apply in the near future, to ham radio. 

    And that makes this talk depart from the usually non-technical DCC banquet presentations. He probably left some spouses behind, but even if you're a non-so-technical ham, eventually you'll catch up.

    Radio Rating: C. However, you might need some of Tom's slides to help you keep up. Many of them are just headline text, but there are enough pictures and charts, and a few comics, that you'll miss the context here and there. As usual, if listening leaves too many blanks, head to the web site and watch the video for Episode 375.

    And this completes our series from the 2017 ARRL & TAPR Digital Communications Conference, held September 15-17 in St. Louis, MO.

    HamRadioNow is viewer (listener) supported. There's no advertising, and this year no KICKSTARTER for the DCC. If you want to help out a bit, stop by https://HamRadioNow.tv and 'click the pig'.

  20. The New York Marathon. World's biggest, right? And Ham Radio is huge there.

    The Boston Marathon. Ham Radio is big there, too. And it's, what, #2? 

    Nope. Worldwide, it's not even close. In the USA, it's #3 (as of 2015, anyway, the last year a quick web search had stats).

    So who's #2. The Marine Corps Marathon in DC? Nope. (But ham radio is big there, too).

    #2 is Chicago. The perpetual Second City (even though Los Angeles took that USA title a few decades ago). And yes, even though you've never heard of it, nearly 150 hams pitch in to help it run smoothly.

    Rob Orr K9RST has been the lead ham for the Chicago Marathon for the past decade, recruiting from a coalition of radio clubs and individual hams to provide communications for the medical side of the event (similar to the ham's mission at Boston). And as you'll hear, he really has a handle on it all.

    Host David Goldenberg w0DHG leads this chat, as Gary KN4AQ hides behind the scenes (mostly). And note that this is the usual in-depth interview, but the show really runs about 95 minutes, and the rest is the 'post-show party' (aka The Best Part of the Show).

    Radio Rating: A+. Rob provided some stills that give you a flavor of the event, but you'll get the complete story from the audio.