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communications within the bcec (amateur radios too)

a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRKRegistered User regular
edited February 2014 in PAX East
so if your like me and cell signal within the bcec is nonexistent you might want to think about bringing a set of 2 way radios with you so you can communicate with the rest of your group if you split up.i been told that frs (the ones u can buy at any walmart)radios work OK inside the building but not all that well from 1 end to the other.it depends on how good your radio is tho.

i will have my dualband radio with me for anyone who has an amateur radio license and wana chit chat.

a fraking toaster on
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    miker525miker525 New YorkRegistered User regular
    Never would have considered anything like this. Seems like a cool idea. I've personally never really had any issues with cell service though. Every year I read about people not getting signal but I can't remember a single time I didn't. I have T-Mobile which usually gets criticism in general but it seems do well with PAX. Wifi on the other hand is usually butchered and barely working for me.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    I think as long as you don't have AT&T you're fine ;)

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    I have virgin mobile and it was garbage inside.

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    xenardxenard Registered User regular
    Throw Sprint into the mix for crappy signal

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    I think Virgin runs on Sprint's network. It wouldn't surprise me to find out they're bad.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    yea virgin runs on the crappy end of sprint,its not bad around town or even in walmart but any place in the hill towns around here and u get a bar or less.still 3g tho so i cant complain.

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    TrandescentTrandescent Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    Verizon was solid throughout the Expo the past few years for me as long as you aren't trying to send MMS messages.

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    VapokVapok Just a Guy. BostonRegistered User regular
    There are a few HAM's in the building..

    wink wink nudge nudge.

    -K4IWX

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    im totes jelious,im going for my radio test on the 28th,memorized and understand almost every question and answer to the technician class test.hopefully ill pass and have my own callsign by pax east.

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    sacratoysacratoy Colorado, USARegistered User regular
    I was on Verizon last year, and things were alright as long as I didn't do anything including data or MMS. I had to call people or be called most of the time; text message seemed to get hung up occasionally.

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    TopherRocksTopherRocks Rockstar Beard Grower Kent, OH or Long Island, NYRegistered User regular
    Yep, Virgin is pretty much crap within the center. They're on Sprint's network. I've had mixed luck with calls working but texting gets stuck real bad.

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    sillyzombie666sillyzombie666 massRegistered User regular
    sprint is hit or miss

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    BigDumbHippyBigDumbHippy Registered User regular
    I used verizon and had no problems calling or sending txts. the problem is hearing your phone

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    yea verizons got the best network,unfortunatey some of us cant afford it lol.and yea hearing your phone when you do get service is hard to do with all the commotion around you.

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    BigDumbHippyBigDumbHippy Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    yea verizons got the best network,unfortunatey some of us cant afford it lol.and yea hearing your phone when you do get service is hard to do with all the commotion around you.

    There is a verizon prepaid. it's real good. again not the cheapest, but quality

    BigDumbHippy on
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    SchmulkiSchmulki Registered User regular
    I had Sprint last year and calls were very spotty, but texts worked pretty well. Data was VERY hit or miss.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    yea i remember getting txts but it defeated the purpose of trying to find someone because by the time "were are you" txt sent i found the other person lol.

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    RevGutterRevGutter Registered User regular
    Sprint and VM worked awesome the year sprint had a booth. I think Verizon has repeaters through out the BCEC which helps. Aside from the obvious radio congestion, the building itself does not lend itself very well to getting a signal to the outside world.

    Wondering if any of you radio experts know how well those wrist walkie talkies work. Would be dope to work one in to some sort of pip boy looking jammy.

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    flatlineflatline Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    Our group has been bringing these Midland radios, with the fancy PTT security headsets. (We already had them from hunting/hiking, so the only cost to us was for batteries).

    Let me tell you, after struggling with phones at the Hynes and BCEC, this is the way to go. No delayed/undelivered texts, no using of minutes or whatever from your cell plan. The only issue we've had is that somehow we ended up on an [E] or staff channel for a minute last year but we hopped right back off. It almost feels like cheating, but it works amazingly well. We were even able to communicate from the Westin to the BCEC.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    yea like i was saying before if you have a good quality set of radios u can communicate fairly far.and that answers my question of weather staff/security uses frs frequency's as communications for pax east.

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    Sgt.MaysSgt.Mays Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited January 2014
    Another Ham here, hopefully the HAM channels will not be too clogged up as long as we use simplex and not rely on local repeaters (may not be good signal in the BCEC anyways).

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    ZionadZionad CanadaRegistered User regular
    A friend and I use our hams at all the expos we go to. The range is usually good enough to talk to someone from the expo building to the hotel (we lodge as close as possible).

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    yea ham channels shouldn't be to clogged up,frs will most likely be.whats your call sign......i haven't gotten mine yet but should have it by the time pax starts,i take my test in 2 weeks.

    a fraking toaster on
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    HalfazedninjaHalfazedninja Author of Jake Howard: Multiverse 101! Behind YouRegistered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    I think as long as you don't have AT&T you're fine ;)

    I had Verizon in all the pervious years and my signal was crap. I have AT&T now and now I'm nervous lol.

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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    I have a samsung galaxy through stright talk any idea if that would work.

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    flatlineflatline Registered User regular
    Any use of cellular or wifi is a dicey proposition. Doesn't really matter what the network is - there are 30,000+ people crammed into the BCEC and Westin and it just overloads the available resources. Even when you have service, sometimes it can take an hour for a text to show up on the phone of the person sitting 10 feet away. My group has a mix of AT&T and Verizon, and it seems like one or the other is always spotty, but on occasion both/either will work. Recently, we have actually had better luck placing voice calls as opposed to sending texts.

    Wifi is also a very tricky proposition - on paper, it's available; in practice not so much.

    As I said above, we've moved to using the FRS radios for 90% of our communications during the con and that has worked really well for us.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    yea frs is your best bet,hell it would be nice if pax made announcements for upcoming show times and stuff over frs as well as cellphone.

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    Le_GoatLe_Goat Frechified Goat Person BostonRegistered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    I think as long as you don't have AT&T you're fine ;)

    I had Verizon in all the pervious years and my signal was crap. I have AT&T now and now I'm nervous lol.
    Verizon is actually pretty bad terrible all over Boston. I had them for years and finally ditched them. Just switched to T-Mobile, which I've already noticed a major change for the better. Here's to hoping that translates into better BCEC reception.

    While I agree that being insensitive is an issue, so is being oversensitive.
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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    wow i wonder if at&t is just as bad.there like second best network.

    also i passed my technician class exam,woohoo just waitin a few days for my call sign to apear.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    woohoo i got my call sign the other day im officially KC1BDE

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    DreggorDreggor [E] PAX East PC Room Deputy Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    Sgt.Mays wrote: »
    Another Ham here, hopefully the HAM channels will not be too clogged up as long as we use simplex and not rely on local repeaters (may not be good signal in the BCEC anyways).

    I have been toying for years of applying for an Event call and building a HAM repeater for PAX, but with Enforcing and all I never have time..

    Also: as a follow-up, No, event staff for the most part does not use FRS for anything other than a few very specific non-critical areas.

    -Dreggor (K1TEC)

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    that would be so awsome if we had our own pax east repeater.
    we could just all use the same simplex freq.granted the range wont be all that great but for in and around the convention center it should work just fine,specially if were on 5w power rather then the lower power that frs radios use.maybe occasionally use a local repeater to talk about non pax related stuff.

    i see ur located in chicopee? do u use the mt.tom repeater by any chance?

    -chris (KC1BDE)

    a fraking toaster on
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    Sgt.MaysSgt.Mays Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited February 2014
    The Repeaters may also be useful for talking between hotels or the convention center and a hotel, not sure what their rages are like and if IRLP or something would be needed.
    Although from the pic on the BARC club site hard to tell but it looks kinda far from tbe BCEC so not sure how useful it would be in there.

    My guess is it is wait and see on how simplex will work in the BCEC.

    Sgt.Mays on
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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    edited February 2014
    yea we wont know for sure will we actually try it out.
    the BARC repeater only requires a pl of 88.5Hz to access and listen to,so we should be all set for a reapater aslong as ur ht can decode pl tones,they say it covers all of eastern mass too.

    a fraking toaster on
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    DreggorDreggor [E] PAX East PC Room Deputy Registered User regular
    Sgt.Mays wrote: »
    The Repeaters may also be useful for talking between hotels or the convention center and a hotel, not sure what their rages are like and if IRLP or something would be needed.
    Although from the pic on the BARC club site hard to tell but it looks kinda far from tbe BCEC so not sure how useful it would be in there.

    My guess is it is wait and see on how simplex will work in the BCEC.

    We use commercial band radios for some stuff in the center on simplex around 2m at 5w and cover the center no problem. Once you get outside it gets a little shaky but we have had comms to the seaport and through some parts of the Westin.

    that would be so awsome if we had our own pax east repeater.
    we could just all use the same simplex freq.granted the range wont be all that great but for in and around the convention center it should work just fine,specially if were on 5w power rather then the lower power that frs radios use.maybe occasionally use a local repeater to talk about non pax related stuff.

    i see ur located in chicopee? do u use the mt.tom repeater by any chance?

    -chris (KC1BDE)

    When I am active I work digital modes, but when storms pop up or some other emergency I will be on mt tom on voice.

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    KilonumKilonum [E] Somewhere near BostonRegistered User regular
    I really need to get my license, I keep putting it off.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    i know iv put it off for a year and only took me bout a month or 2 to ace the practice tests.questions are real easy if you understand basic electronics and rf theory.

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    Sgt.MaysSgt.Mays Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited February 2014
    Yea it is quite easy to get your ticket nowadays, lots of good resources out there also. One thing i suggest you bring to PAX with you if you are a ham is the Repeater directory 2014 edition, it is updated every 2 years or so and sold at most Radio/Ham stores or online. Really helpful to find repeaters and how to link up to them etc.

    https://www.arrl.org/shop/ARRL-Repeater-Directory-Pocket-Sized-Edition

    Sgt.Mays on
    Gaymer, Nerd and Fan of Freeman's Mind/Half-life/GTA/Red Vs Blue

    Attended: East 14, 15 and West 16
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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    yea i plan on adding all the local repeaters to my radio between now and pax east.

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    a fraking toastera fraking toaster W1TRK Registered User regular
    speaking of ham radio stores,any idea if theres any around boston? might have to do some some research,there pretty rare around this side of the state.

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