Best Settings for CW Contesting with 6600M?

  • 1
  • Question
  • Updated 1 year ago
I enjoyed using my 6600M for the first time in the WPX CW Contest last weekend. The interface with N1MM+ and the SO2R switching worked really great.  It was truly like having two radios.

I played around a lot with different setting to determine what the best setting would be for a crowded CW band.  I am still not sure I am optimized there.  I wonder what settings other CW Contesters use for filter, APF, Audio, Binaural Audio, AGC, etc. for the optimum experience while running in a crowded CW band.  I tended to user the 400 HZ filter and would switch in about 30% APF with an F key and then used the RIT for the weak ones.  But maybe that is because this is how I did it with a traditional radio.   Any suggestions appreciated.


Al, K0AD
Photo of Al Dewey

Al Dewey

  • 74 Posts
  • 3 Reply Likes

Posted 1 year ago

  • 1
Photo of Kari Gustafsson SM0HRP

Kari Gustafsson SM0HRP, Elmer

  • 291 Posts
  • 36 Reply Likes
Hi Al, I worked CQ WPX SOAB recently (1650 QSO). I must say it varies. 400 Hz is good to start with. Seldom narrower. But often weak dx call off frequency and one need to filter them out first in the ear and than with the filter if needed. Low AGC but nothing else in filtering. I also run SO2R so you will need "broad listening" on both ears to get the rythm on both bands.
So I guess your way of doing CW will effect it all. Actually training SO2R has given me a new "ear filter" which really helps even with broad cw filter characteristic.
Photo of Wayne


  • 614 Posts
  • 89 Reply Likes
Id like to see Ria post how she does it :-)
Photo of Varistor


  • 334 Posts
  • 74 Reply Likes
The cardinal rule of contesting is “If you are not running you are not winning”. As a matter of priority you should focus on improving your run rate.

Here are some answers to your questions:

1) If you are running with a 400 Hz wide filter you are too high on the band. You really want to be in the first 20-30 kHz. I usually sit 400 Hz from the bottom of the band edge to keep one side clear from the QRM. 90% of the time I use 250 Hz wide filter and switch to 600 Hz at band opening/close.

2) APF does not work well on any of the rigs I have used recently- Flex, K3S, and Icom 7610. It’s great for DXing, but inhibits high run rates

3) Learn how to use the AGC and keep RF gain to a minimum. Diversity helps sometimes if you have antennas with different polarization and immune to RFI from the second radio. You are much better with a stack of two yagis

4) Learn how to use the logger so that you can use the arrow keys to go from mult to mult or jump from spot to spot. If you are using the mouse you are wasting time and not winning

5) Figure out how to control your Flex without the mouse using Flex Control, using the logger, or AutoHotKeys. Again, time spending mousing around is wasted time. Or get a Maestro. The end goal is to control the rig without ever having to look at it or look at a non-logger screen.