[amsat-bb] Re: D STAR

Tony Langdon vk3jed at gmail.com
Mon Nov 11 22:06:06 PST 2013

On 11/11/13 6:44 PM, Gordon JC Pearce wrote:
> On Mon, Nov 11, 2013 at 12:14:26AM -0600, George Henry wrote:
>> There are very good reasons why no other amateur radio manufacturer
>> will touch it.
>> George, KA3HSW
> What, apart from encryption being illegal on the amateur bands?
> Without a radical redesign and a new codec, DStar is just not suitable for amateur use.  Proprietary software runs counter to the whole principle of amateur radio, and in this case the encrypted proprietary codec is quite possibly not legal for amateur use.
That argument is a furphy.  AMBE is readily available in a $20 chip if 
the authorities want to listen in, it's not encrytion (formally defined 
as encoding to obscure the meaning of a transmission), it's encoding to 
minimise the audio data transmitted for intelligible speech.

D-STAR itself is open specification, and a significant proportion (a 
majority now?) of D-STAR gateways run open source software (such as the 
G4KLX pcrepeatercontroller/ircddbgateway software) on both Icom repeater 
hardware and homebrew setups.

Sure, an open source vocoder would have been nice, but one with suitable 
performance and available in a form that could be incorporated into 
radios didn't exist when D-STAR was developed. Had D-STAR been developed 
today, Codec2 would be a real option (though I'm not yet aware of an 
implementation suitable for a mobile or HT).

73 de Tony VK3JED/VK3IRL

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