Digital Messaging

GEARS uses digital data communications modes over amateur radio to communicate with speed and accuracy. We primarily use FLDIGI and FLMSG, but lately we have been experimenting with AX.25 packet as well.

To do this, you’ll need a computer, a sound card interface, and a compatible radio.

Sound Card Interface

GEARS recommends the Tigertronics SignaLink USB, as it is the most compatible and the easiest to configure and use. The West Mountain Radio RIGblaster series is also well-known.

Many radios have a “data” port on the rear. If your radio does not have a data port, you can connect the interface via the mic and speaker jacks instead.

Software

We primarily use FLDIGI and FLMSG for messaging.

Images can be sent and received via SSTV, using software like MMSSTV.

Getting Started

Once you’ve purchased your sound card interface, you’ll want to configure the software. Jeffrey Kopcak, K8JTK has a great article on getting FLDIGI and FLMSG up and running.