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CW Contest please suggestions

Hi guys,
I'm a new member, I have a Flex 6400, and I'm looking for suggestions about the software to use for a CW contest:
- logging
- operate cw in rx and tx (I don't know CW so well to operate cw in a contest)

cw skimmer? SDC skimmer? N1MM? others?
Wich are the most integrated with SmartSDR?

Thanks in advance,
iz4bkk Andrea
Tagged:

Answers

  • My own choice is N1MM. It makes setting up the CW macros for ESM (enter sends macro with correct sequence automated) for both running and search/pounce very easy to do. Logging and scoring are automated of course. It integrates fully with Flex and there are some You Tube videos with setup procedures, including an excellent one from Mike VE3MW.

    If you already own CW Skimmer, it is ok and is the most popular skimmer with Flex. SDC Skimmer is excellent and has additional features such as DX Cluster clients whose output can be added to the panorama along with the Skimmer spots. With optional windows, it will also show RBN spots for yourself or another particular callsign as it is spotted in case you are chasing it.

    Erik EI4KF

  • Tim K9WX
    Tim K9WX Member ✭✭

    If you look at the Live Scores page for last weekend's CQ WW SSB contest (https://contestonlinescore.com/scoreboard/?contest_id=54) you can see what others used as logging software in the last column on the far right. The same list for last year's CQ WW CW is here: https://contestonlinescore.com/archive/?arc_contest_id=24 Hover your mouse over the word "Log" at the top of the Log column and a list of abbreviations will pop up. There appear to be some regional preferences: it seems that N1MM+ is more commonly used in NA while WinTest and DXLog appear to be more popular in EU. If you have a local Elmer, it might be worthwhile to find out what they are using as it would be much simpler to advise you if you are both using the same software. Of course, these lists only show the software being used by those who also use online scoring.

    I use N1MM+ so can't speak to other software from experience but I doubt there would be much difference from one software to another when it comes to integrating with SSDR.

    If your question about RX of CW means you want software that will decode CW, then you might consider WriteLog as your logging software. My limited experience with CW decoders is that you must be nearly zero beat with the station you are trying to decode before the decoder will work, and being zero beat does not always happen in the competitive frenzy of a CW contest. WriteLog has a built in decoder that solves this by using a multichannel decoding window which will decode stations that are +/- several hundred Hertz from your dial frequency. The downside of WriteLog: it is not free and, in my experience, does not have the depth of support that N1MM+ has. And, in any event, decoding errors are quite common: CW decoders just don't work as well as RTTY, PSK or FT8 decoders. If you want to be a competitive CW contester, learning to copy CW without a decoder is a must. The CWops group has free instruction on learning CW that is very successful: see https://cwops.org/cw-academy/

    Tim K9WX

  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin

    N1MM comes with CWGet and it is pretty powerful in terms of tunning. It will tune to the loudest signal in the passband (or not-your choice)

    Skimmers are great, but they do require lots of computer power.

    73

  • SDC Skimmer uses minimal computer power, even with a skimmer open for every slice.

  • iz4bkk
    iz4bkk Member
    [{"insert":"thank you very much for your reply, so happy to read differents points of view; I will check and test the softwares , and I will learn more deeply che CW, it is the best choice, hi!\n73, thanks again, a very nice community!\nAndrea\n"}]

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