Saturday, 23 July 2011

Wouxun KG-699E Fault

My Wouxun KG-699E, 4m hand held radio, developed a fault recently. The loud speaker socket (3.5mm) became intermittent so I took it back to Martin Lynch and Sons ( where I bought it.

 I asked MLS if this was a common fault. They said the socket is surface mounted on the PCB and this had come detached and needed resoldering. They had seen it before but it was not common. They said that generally the reliability of these Wouxun radios is very good.

They looked at it straight away and repaired it while I waited. This fault was non-fatal as the internal speaker worked, but still annoying. Full marks to Martin Lynch for customer service and fixing my radio quickly under guarantee.

If you are looking for my full review of the Wouxun KG-699E, look at my earlier posts, particularly: 

Dave M0BGR

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

FM Radio Switch Off

OFCOM are now planning the FM radio switch off (and AM radio switch off) and turning the whole of radio broadcasting in UK over to DAB. Their consultation is tucked away on an obsure part of their web site:

This is clearly a cynical ploy to make sure they only get comments from industry insiders who want the switch over to go ahead. If you are opposed to the FM switch off, you should comment on this consultation and here are a few reasons why you should:

  • DAB does not work - the UK has chosen the wrong system (DAB Plus is better, but far from perfect) so you are likely to wind up with a poorer radio service than you currently enjoy on FM.
  • DAB radios eat batteries, so it will cost you far more and we will damage the environment.
  • If you enjoy local radio coverage from an adjacent area, that does not officially cover where you are, you will loose this (that's what OFCOM say).
  • Extending DAB nationally requires lots of new transmitters. This is never going to happen so large areas will be left with no coverage. Spend on new transmitters will be based on population covered, fine if you live in a big city, but what happens when you go on holiday?
  • Speaking of which, UK DAB does not work in foreign countries and few countries are following UK to rush headlong into digital broadcasting.
Go to the OFCOM site now and let them know your thoughts. I am not opposed to DAB, it has some merits, but I am opposed to switching off FM and AM broadcasting in UK.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Royal Wedding Special Callsign MR0BGR

I did get on the air with my special call sign MR0BGR, but not for as long as I would have liked - work got in the way and I was abroad for part of the period covered by my licence.
There seemed to be lots of 'MR' staions using SSB and CW on the popular bands so I went for PSK-31, mostly on 30m, but I did use the other bands and did some CW. Most of my contacts were within Europe. It looked like the solar cycle was picking up, but the SFI dropped away to the low 100s for most of the time that I was able to operate so conditions were not great.
I have posted the QSL cards on eQSL and will send paper ones, via the bureau, shortly. If you worked me and do not have an eQSL card, let me know as this is an oversight on my part. A few Short Wave Listeners (SWL) have sent QSL cards direct - I will reply when I get my cards printed.
Thanks for those who worked me or sent SWL reports - these are always welcome here.
Dave, M0BGR