Friday, January 14, 2011


Today I made my second attempt to work with ROS. I installed the newest version 6.1.5. beta. My first QSO was last year with IW8WSR February 10, 2010. After excluding hams who has critics on the new digital mode I decided to stop with further experiments. But time passes and hard feelings slipped away. I like to experiment with all kind of digital modes and ROS deserves a fair chance. ROS has developed as a nice piece of software. Though the bandwidth is 2000 Hz, but still smaller than SSB. ;-) I have heard that it has the capability to decode signals that have a Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) of -35dB, that makes ROS very interesting. My first 2 QSO were: IK7XTG and TA1BM on 14.103 KHz this morning.


  1. The hard feelings may have slipped away, but my main criticism of the mode - that it is too wide and inevitably causes QRM to other modes because users can't find a big enough space on the 20m band in particular - has not changed. Whenever I try to use digital modes in the upper part of the data allocation it is impossible to avoid this wide mode. I think it is inconsiderate to use it. Some people more knowledgeable than I have suggested that the bandwidth used is not justified by the performance and the SNR claims should be taken with a pinch of salt and are not calculated on the same basis as other modes. Italy and Turkey should be workable from Holland using other modes occupying far less bandwidth.

  2. I choose not to get involved in digital "wars". Good blog friends on both sides of the isle. Guess that may be a reason I stick with "antique" CW. Seems like all my interests could be defined as "antique"...books, art, music, films. Note women not included, hi. 73 Dick

  3. I have also revisited ROS, and like what I see. As long as operators stick to QRP and/or QRPp and use the assigned frequencies I see no problem. Also, as with any mode, make sure the frequency is clear. Sure, bandwidth is wide, but so is SSTV.
    I think ROS mode has its place, and isn't Amateur Radio about experimentation as well?

    Just my pennies/cents worth.

  4. Hello Julian, I agree that 2000 Hz is rather wide for a digi mode. ROS does not use the allocated part for narrow band modes on HF but the frequencies Intended for All modes, digimodes, automatically data stations (unattended). I think that time has changed. For the last 5 years digital modes become more and more popular. Computers and software are still developing. The time that we had mainly CW and SSB (AM) and old fashion RTTY are gone by. Now broadcast stations are still vanishing from HF in the coming years, amateur radio should have more space. I think digital mode should get 14.101 till 14.150 Khz. The 20 meter part 14.300-14.350 Mhz is almost not in use. The performance: I don’t know. Indeed, Italy and Turkey are workable with all other modes. I will test the performance out. But I think JT65 is still the best for weak signals. If ROS will beat it, we’ll see. 73 Paul

  5. Hello Dick, the point is: I like it all. I like the old modes as well. I am not a technician at heart. I am more a man for communication and propagation and I was always curious if something could beat the noise on HF. So I like the development of all digital modes. Just because of QRP it can be fantastic. 73 Paul

  6. Hello André, I agree with you. Bandwidth is not the problem, QRO is. A ROS operator with 20 watts or less is not the problem, but the man who uses SSB with 1500 KW or more with overdriven speech compressor is the real problem. Keep on experimenting! 73 Paul

  7. SSTV operates in the analogue modes part of the bands, around 14.230 I think. If 2kHz wide ROS operated there I wouldn't have a problem with it. Nor would I have a problem with Paul's suggestion to push the digital boundary up to 14.150, but that isn't going to happen.

    The problem is that a lot of different incompatible modes are trying to operate in the small space above 14.100 - Olivia, Pactor, WinMor, Packet, to name but a few. Moreover, many of these are net type operations where everyone uses one published fixed frequency.

    People just can't come in with new modes and expect everyone to move for them. All this just so people can use low power. If JT65A isn't good enough then turn the power up if you want to type faster. We're licensed to use up to 400W you know. QRP shouldn't just be about power it should be about bandwidth as well.

  8. Well, looking at the latest band plans, there is actually no real reason why we can't use ROS modem or other wide digi modes some where in 14.125 - 14.300 as it states "ALL modes" and does not exclude digi modes. Unless I am reading it wrong. In actual fact ROS16 is a wide mode and should actually be in that part of the band.

    I think the biggest problem is that it was they way the mode was introduced and the reactions caused. If more thought and planning had been used, we might not have the issue we have now.

    The trouble is if one has two very stubborn points of view nothing moves.

    Nieto Ros didn't have an amateur radio license when he released his program on the masses. I am not sure if he is licensed now. I am open to correction here. I think that might have been part of the problem too. His idea is very good and he was exited, however, I think the radio amateurs who helped him may not have fully understood the mode and just went straight for the narrow modes part of the band, where most narrower digital modes operate. They should have actually gone somewhere between 14.125 - 14.300.

    This are just my rambling comments, and I don't mean to offend anyone.


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