Choosing a TNC
is a TNC?
is the initials (a fancy word is acronym) for Terminal Node
I don't know exactly how they work, just that most TNC's today can decode a number of digital modes, usually - Packet Radio, Amateur Television, CW, AMTOR, PacTOR, RTTY, SITOR, NAVTEX, Fax, GTOR / Golay and ASCII.
With this new mode called PacTOR II though, there are some new TNC's out that support it, and ONLY the new TNC's have support for it.!
|How much do they cost?||If
you buy a TNC second hand, they cost as little as $50 AUD.
Packet is the most common mode used and there are a lot of Packet only TNC's cheap, the more modes you want, the more expensive the TNC of course !
As a general guide, here are some prices - of course these prices may vary.
$50 - 100 AUD - Packet only
$100 - 200 AUD - Packet and PacTOR
$200 - $350 AUD - Multi-Mode
$200 AUD - Packet only
$300 AUD - Packet and PacTOR
$650 - 700 - Multi-mode. (ie, all modes listed above)
|What do I need to use a TNC?||A
TNC won't work without a radio to receive audio from and a computer to display
I am assuming that if you're reading this page you've got the radio and computer , and you wanna know what you might need to get going in digital communications !
Of course, the radio's gotta be attatched to an antenna, for tranmsitting, the antenna's gotta be tuned to the correct frequency, for receiving any length of wire greater than about 15' is good for Short Wave.
|How do I set-it-up?||
|Why do I need a TNC?||A
TNC is the interface between your radio and your computer that provides
a common language between both, so they can talk to each other ! I mean,
two people who only speak one language each, and those two languages are
different, can't understand each other, right, well, it's the same idea
for your computer and radio, they need a translator and the TNC is it !
Withouth the TNC, your radio and computer might as well be speaking Arabic and Spanish, so they won't understand a thing !
|What TNC's, what modes?||Well,
this also depends on what brand you wanna buy!!
There are a few brands that come to mind off the top of my head.
KAM, AEA, MFJ and PacComm. I am sure there are others...these are the only one's I have seen available in Australia !
Comments or suggestions?