Two different digital modes are used by ARES, PSK125 for
HF (PSK63 backup) and MT63-2K (MT63-1K backup) for VHF.
For HF it is extremely important you have your rig
- Put your rig in USB mode. All digital modes are done
in Upper Side Band, no matter what band
- Disable any Equalization settings you may have, both
transmit and receive. Also disable any transmit audio processor. It is also
recommended you put your receiver's AGC to minimum. It is extremely
important that your transmit audio is pure without any user added settings.
next critical step is setting output power. Power is determined by the audio
level you use, not the power setting on your rig.
- First, set your power level to
its maximum, usually 100 Watts.
- Then, with your PC audio at minimum click the
Tune button on the FLDigi screen. This should key your rig (assuming you have a
direct connection with either a commercial or homebrew interface). If you are
using the acoustic method manually put your rig into transmit mode.
- Slowly increase your audio until you are putting out
30 to 50 Watts. DO NOT GO ANY HIGHER THAN 50 WATTS. Under the right conditions 50
Watts or lower will get you half way around the world no matter what band you
- After you have set your
power check that there is no ALC showing on your rig's meter. If there is, lower
the audio until no ALC is showing. If there is an ALC indication this means your
rig is compressing your audio and in digital mode this means it is being
For VHF adjust your audio output so that it is about equal
or slight lower that your voice level. You may need the help of another operator
to get this set correctly.
For receiving in both modes you want to adjust your PC's
audio input so that you have a good level of green showing in the lower right
corner box. As long as you are receiving data correctly your audio is set.