Discovering DMR notes

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a) DMR: sites

b) DMR: forums

c) DMR: articles

d) DMR: presentations

e) DMR: books

f) DMR: videos

g) DMR: hardware & software

h) DMR: tools

i) DMR: repeaters

j) DMR: talkgroups & reflectors

k) DMR: nets

1) Some repeater-based talkgroups

The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  Frequency CC TS  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
Rocky Mtn Wide, Lee Hill Rptr (RMHAM Network)
   700  446.9875−  7  1  LEE RCKY MTN 700
Northern CO Region, Lee Hill Rptr (RMHAM Network)
   721  446.9875−  7  2  LEE NO CO 721
Rocky Mtn Wide, Horsetooth Mtn Rptr
   700  446.7500−  7  1  HRS RCKY MTN 700
Northern CO Region, Horsetooth Mtn Rptr
   700  446.7500−  7  2  HRS NO CO 721
Local, Parker Pinery Rptr
     2  445.0750−  1  2  PRA LCL 2
CO STWD, Parker Pinery Rptr
  3108  445.0750−  1  1  PRA CO STWD 3108

2) Some BrandMeister hotSPOT talkgroups

For hotspot-based setup: These all use the same TX and RX simplex frequency (whatever your hotspot is set up to use), color code 1, and time slot 2. (Repeater-based time slots are shown in parentheses.)

Links are to the BrandMeister Hoseline service, so you can get an idea of the activity on the talkgroup. The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
World Wide (TS1)
    91  WW 91
North America (TS1)
    93  N AM 93
N AM TAC 310
   310  TAC 310¹
N AM TAC 311
   311  TAC 311¹
N AM TAC 312
   312  TAC 312¹
Worldwide English (Dynamic)
   913  WW EN DYN 913
US Nationwide (TS1)
  3100  US WIDE 3100¹
Colorado Statewide (TS2)
  3108  CO STWD 3108
Parker Radio Association LCL (TS2)
310844  PRA LCL 310844
Calling Area 0: Midwest, incl CO (TS1)
 31090  MIDWST 31090
Calling Areas 7: West (TS1)
 31097  WEST 31097
Eastern Oklahoma
 31402  E OK 31402
Parrot Private (TS1 & TS2)
310997  PARROT 310997
Reg and Loc (APRS) Services (TS1 & TS2)
310999  APRS 310999

[1] Talkgroups 3100, 310, 311, 312 are linked across BrandMeister and DMR-MARC.

3) Some other hotspot talkgroups

For hotspot-based setup: These all use the same TX and RX simplex frequency (whatever your hotspot is set up to use), color code 1, and time slot 2. (Repeater-based time slots are shown in parentheses.)

The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
DMR-MARC: World Wide (TS1)
     1  WW 1
DMR-MARC: North America (TS1)
     3  N AM 3
DMR-MARC: WW English (TS1)
    13  WW EN 13
DMR-MARC: N AM TAC 310 (TS1)
   310  TAC 310
DMR-MARC: N AM TAC 311 (TS1)
   311  TAC 311
DMR-MARC: N AM TAC 312 (TS1)
   312  TAC 312
DMR-MARC: Northern CO (TS2)
  3171  NO CO 3171
  Note: cross-connected to BrandMeister
DMR-MARC: Mountain Region (TS2)
  3177  MTN RGN 3177

4) All BrandMeister regional talkgroups

The BrandMeister U.S. regional talkgroups mirror the callsign assignment regions shown in this ARRL WAS map (PDF).

Time slots interleaved on the signal

Links are to the BrandMeister Hoseline service, so you can get an idea of the activity on the talkgroups. On repeaters, these talkgroups typically are on time slot 1. The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
 31090  0 MIDWST 31090
 31091  1 N EAST 31091
 31092  2 NY NJ 31092
 31093  3 MIDATLTC 31093
 31094  4 S EAST 31094
 31095  S CENTRAL 31095
 31096  6 CAL 31096
 31097  7 WEST 31097

5) All BrandMeister state talkgroups

Links are to the BrandMeister Hoseline service, so you can get an idea of the activity on the talkgroups. On repeaters, the home state talkgroup is typically on time slot 2. The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
  3101  AL STWD 3101
  3102  AK STWD 3102
  3104  AZ STWD 3104
  3105  AR STWD 3105
  3106  CA STWD 3106
  3108  CO STWD 3108
  3109  CT STWD 3109
  3110  DE STWD 3110
  3111  DC STWD 3111
  3112  FL STWD 3112
  3113  GA STWD 3113
  3115  HI STWD 3115
  3116  ID STWD 3116
  3117  IL STWD 3117
  3118  IN STWD 3118
  3119  IA STWD 3119
  3120  KS STWD 3120
  3121  KY STWD 3121
  3122  LA STWD 3122
  3123  ME STWD 3123
  3124  MD STWD 3124
  3125  MA STWD 3125
  3126  MI STWD 3126
  3127  MN STWD 3127
  3128  MS STWD 3128
  3129  MO STWD 3129
  3130  MT STWD 3130
  3131  NE STWD 3131
  3132  NV STWD 3132
  3133  NH STWD 3133
  3134  NJ STWD 3134
  3135  NM STWD 3135
  3136  NY STWD 3136
  3137  NC STWD 3137
  3138  ND STWD 3138
  3139  OH STWD 3139
  3140  OK STWD 3140
  3141  OR STWD 3141
  3142  PA STWD 3142
  3144  RI STWD 3144
  3145  SC STWD 3145
  3146  SD STWD 3146
  3147  TN STWD 3147
  3148  TX STWD 3148¹
  3149  UT STWD 3149
  3150  VT STWD 3150
  3151  VA STWD 3151
  3153  WA STWD 3153
  3154  WV STWD 3154
  3155  WI STWD 3155
  3156  WY STWD 3156

[1] BrandMeister 3148 (TX STWD) is crosslinked to DMR-MARC 9000.

6) All DMR-MARC regional talkgroups

The seven DMR-MARC U.S. regional talkgroups have a different grouping.

Time slots interleaved on the signal

The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
  3169  RG MIDWST 3169
  3172  RG N EAST 3172
  3173  RG MIDATLTC 3173
  3174  RG S EAST 3174
  3175  RG S PLAINS 3175
  3176  RG S WEST 3176
  3177  RG MOUNTAIN 3177

7) NoCO DMR talkgroups

The Northern Colorado (NoCO) DMR group is a group of Northern Colorado amateur radio operators who operate and maintain an amateur radio DMR repeater network. Usage of the repeater system is open to use by all licensed amateur radio operators with the appropriate privileges.

NoCO DMR talkgroups (BrandMeister). The display names are just what I use.

TLKGRP  DISPLAY ONSCREEN
  3171  NoCO (Northern Colorado)
  Note: cross-connected to DMR-MARC
 31088  CO HD (Hotspot Discussion)
 31083  CO Severe WX
 31084  NoCO MTN (Front Range)

8) Constellations: a big leap for digital voice

There is work being done to include DMR into existing XLX reflectors, and by linking into the XRF/XLX infrastructure.

From the Kings of Digital Notify group: The Constellation reflectors are:

8a) The advantage of a constellation

From the paper, "XLX and XRF Reflectors, DMR, and use with DMRGateway" by John Fields, K6KD, of the D-STAR Round Table Forum:

The advantage for existing DMR users are portals into current XLX/XRF infrastructure (individual reflectors or groups of linked reflectors) either using new DMR only Talk Groups or Talk Groups with transcoding. The advantage for existing D-STAR users is the ability to access the XLX/XRF infrastructure using many high quality, low cost DMR radios.

An example of a constellation net is the D-STAR Round Table Net, which because of this new flexibility is joined by people using D-STAR, DMR, and even System Fusion radios:

D-STAR Round Table is on a constellation of XRF/XLX Reflectors. To participate, you may connect to any one of the linked Reflectors: XRF002A, XRF310A, XRF555A, XLX313A, DMR XLX313/TG 4001 OR connect to a repeater that is linked to one of the reflectors.

Notes:

8b) Constellation setup

Follow-up note (Nov 2017) – Following the steps in a document written by Craig Jungers, K7EXJ, "Connecting your DMR radio to the D-STAR constellation", I configured the Pi-Star DMRGateway settings so that I was able to join into the Kings of Digital constellation with my DMR radio, listening to callers on both D-STAR and DMR radios. Sweet, this is progress! To summarize:

  1. I enabled the Pi-Star DMR Configuration with the DMR Master set to DMRGateway, and then set up the XLX section as follows:
    • XLX Master = XLX_313
    • XLX Startup TG = None [Note: This option is no longer available.]
    • XLX Master Enable = On
  2. I added an XLX hotspot zone to my codeplug with the following channels:
    • XLX313 CQCQCQ = TG 6, Group Call
    • XLX Unlink = TG 64000, Private Call
    • XLX313 A Link = TG 64001, Private Call (XLX313 A is persistently linked to the Kings of Digital reflector constellation, which also includes XRF002 A, XRF310 A, XRF555 A, and XLX212 A)
    • XLX313 B Link = TG 64002, Private Call (XLX313 B is persistently linked to XRF757 C and the QuadNet)
    • XLX313 C Link = TG 64003, Private Call (XLX313 C is persistently linked to XRF555 C = good for multimode extended QSOs)
    • XLX313 D Link = TG 64004, Private Call (XLX313 D is persistently linked to XRF310 D = good for multimode extended QSOs)
    • XLX313 E Link = TG 64005, Private Call

Kings of Digital Notify for Constellation reflectors

In early May 2018, the Kings of Digital announced a Notify service "to enable users to notify each other of either planned or ad hoc discussions on the Constellation." For more info, see: Kings of Digital Notify group.

9) Auto-static talkgroups

Dec 2018 – important prefix note by Toshen

BrandMeister USA no longer supports the use of reflectors via its network. I think a consequence of this is that using a public call to TG 4000 no longer works to effectively disconnect from a talkgroup (perhaps because 4000 is within the range—4000 – 4999—of reflectors?). Recently, I began noticing that the auto-static feature is behaving differently, and the tooltip has changed: "(Auto Static) This talkgroup is set automatically due to its the last talkgroup that has been keyed up clear by dailling TG4000."

What I'm experiencing is that if I key up TG4000 (grp) during a break in transmissions on a busy talkgroup, the status in the Pi-Star DMR Repeater module will change to "No TG," but as soon as there's subsequent activity on the talkgroup, it will immediately re-link. This makes it more challenging to successfully unlink from a busy talkgroup. In addition, if I'm linked to one talkgroup and it's auto-static, it seems that a new talkgroup now gets made auto-static just by linking to it, even without keying up TG4000 (grp) before or after. Perhaps there is an implied key up of TG4000 (grp) when you switch directly to a new talkgroup? I find the way auto-static is behaving now to be confusing and frustrating.

Workaround – If I want to totally unlink from talkgroups and don't want any TG to be made auto-static, I key up TG 9, which as I understand it is linking me to my own hotspot. The bottom line is that it works. I've made TG 9 the first choice in the list of talkgroups in my AnyTone AT-D878UV. I can access the talkgroup list by pressing the List key (a.k.a., Exit key), which is the red – – key on the right below the display, just above the P2 key. So leaving a talkgroup without falling into the auto-static quicksand is an easy double key press: List > PTT.

Okay, now the original auto-static note that was posted by John, AA7US, in the Pi-Star Users Support Group

Q: How exactly do Brandmeister's auto-static talk groups work and what is their purpose?

A: On a regular repeater system there are "static" and "dynamic" talk groups. Hotspots have a special "auto-static" type talk group on Brandmeister.

Regular static talk groups are permanently linked to a repeater by an administrator using Brandmeister's SelfCare web dashboard. They can only be disconnected by the repeater administrator.

Dynamic talk groups are only temporarily linked to a repeater system each time someone keys up on a talk group. A dynamic talk group will time out after 15 minutes of no activity and automatically disconnect from the repeater. This makes it easy for users to share a repeater with different talk groups. Since a hotspot typically isn't shared, the need to automatically disconnect a talk group isn't necessary.

10) AnyTone firmware updates

The AnyTone firmware update process is different from other radios I've used, and I find it a bit convoluted, so much so that I end up having to hunt down and open the instructions every time I do it, so I'm going to record the steps here to make them easier for me to find!

  1. Download the updates from your vendor. This step always means downloading the firmware update and the matching Customer Programming Software (CPS) upgrade, because the AnyTone requires both to be on the same version. In addition, it is sometimes necessary to also download a USB driver update. Some vendors package them altogether; others list them separately. Extract any files that are zipped.
  2. Optional: Download the latest digital contact list. I figure if I'm going to go through the hassle of updating the CPS and firmware, I might as well bring my digital contact list up to date at the same time, especially given how quickly DMR registrations are growing.
  3. Important! Connect the radio to the computer, turn it on, open the previous CPS, set the COM port (on my computer, I have to set it every session), and then read the radio's codeplug. If a new digital contact list has been downloaded, don't bother reading the contact list, just the other data.
    Note: If you have trouble with the USB driver (COM port not found), it might be due to Windows third-party signature verification. For a workaround, see the Driver signature enforcement note below.
  4. Save the read data, and then close the previous CPS, turn off the radio, and disconnect it.
  5. Install the new CPS and, if needed, the new USB driver (I install the X64 version for my 64-bit system; a 34-bit system should use the X86 version).
  6. Open the updated CPS and then open the radio's read data that was just saved.
  7. If a new digital contact list has been downloaded, import it (Tool > Import > Digital Contact List), and then save the codeplug with a new name.
  8. Connect the radio to the computer, turn it on, and then in the new CPS, set the COM port. Turn off and disconnect the radio.
  9. In the CPS, open the Firmware Update tool (Tool > Firmware Update) and prepare for the update:
    1. While holding down both the radio's PTT key and Alarm button (the blue or orange button on top), turn the radio on, and then plug it into the computer. The LED Status Indicator will blink red.
    2. In the Firmware Update tool, opn the firmware update file that was previously downloaded (it will have an .spi extension).
    3. If necessary, choose the COM port, select Duplex, set the COM speed to the highest setting, and then click Write. The LED Status Indicator will glow steady red while the firmware is being updated.
    4. A message is displayed in the CPS when the update is finished. Turn the radio off, and disconnect it.
  10. Initialize the radio (formerly: Reset the radio's Main Control Unit/MCU):
    1. While holding the radio's PTT key and PF1 button (the button with one bar just below the PTT key), turn the radio on. It should display: "Are you sure you want to Initialize radio?" (Formerly: MCU Reset.) Press Confirm. Do NOT turn the radio off while this is displayed. This process will wipe all the data stored in the radio.
    2. When the initialization/MCU reset process is finished, set the time zone, date, and time. Use the P1 button to move through the date and time fields.
    3. When finished, turn off and disconnect the radio.
  11. Connect the radio to the computer and turn it on. In the CPS, set the COM port, and then Write to Radio. Write both the Digital Contact List and the Other Data.
  12. When the write is finished, turn off and disconnect the radio. Should be good to go!

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