[aprssig] QWERTY for APRS radios (AVMAP G6)

Bob Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Sun May 22 09:19:42 EDT 2011

One of the most exciting APRS things I saw at Dayton was the new AVMAP-G6 APRS GPS.  

ALready the hands-down best GPS for APRS beacuse it has the full 200+ APRS symbol set built in, it now has added full support for APRS messaging and texting, including a QWERTY keyboard (touch screen).   (The NUVI-350 is a very close second with the ARgent Data Systems translator, but that model NUVI is no longer available)...

Currently, only the Byonics TT4 has implemented the interface to this new messaging capability, but one would hope that every APRS radio MFR and others will follow.  

What this large screen FULLY navigation functional GPS provides is the COMPLETE user interface to APRS (now that it supports messaging and text entry)...  No more one-way trackers, no more old-fud hams who refuse to text important ham radio APRS info from the field from a keypad.  Now old APRS types can finally communicate with their kids and grand kids (as well as enter IMPORTANT info at events and emergency resposne).  Please see:
(I'll add G6 phots whenI get some)...

Of course, with the TT4 Tiny Track, you can add this full user MAP/GPS/TEXT user interface to ANY radio.  But do not overlook even adding it to D-STAR and even existing APRS radios.

D-STAR!  To add FULL APRS now to D-star, just connect the AVMAP-G6 GPS to the TT4 connected to the external audio on the D-star dual band radio.  Tune the Analog side of he D-star radio to 144.39.  Done.  You now have full (all symbol color map display but also now, a full APRS messaging system with QWERTY keyboard!)  Remember, you can also plug the Kenwood D710 Display head into the D-star 2820 radio too to add the APRS dimension.  See:

Since the full symbol set in the AVMAP GPS is fully exploited by the Kenwood interface already, many D710 operators will already have a G6 GPS.  To open up QWERETY texting, just add the TT4 just as described above for D-star to the external audio on side A..

But-wait!  There's more!  ALthough DPRS automically interfaces D-star GPS mobiles into the APRS-IS, most of this never makes it to local RF.  So an APRS operator and a D-star mobile can be right next to each other as seen by everyone on the planet (on APRS-IS) but the two cannot see each other locally.  BUT if the AVMAP GPA and TT4 combo is added to the Dstar radio AND if Byonics makes a simple tweak to the TT4 so that it is not only a fully functional APRS system on the analog side of the D-star radio (including full text messaging), but that its serial port also monitors the D-STAR serial data channel pin, then it can also integrate the D-star mobile position data into the APRS local RF tactical picture!

All for well under $100 (if  you have the AVMAP G6) GPS.  Oh, also the price for the G6 is LESS than the earlier models.  It was down to something like $450 or so at Dayton.

In summary, the G6 in the palm of the hand now becomes a complete APRS human interface that can be added to ANY mobile or handheld APRS system with the right glue in between.  Combine it with the Argent Data Systemsnew tiny SSTV camera for complete emergency response APRS, text and Imaging.  Watch for more applications.

Bob, Wb4APR

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