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Old 04-07-2016, 05:45   #1
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Winlink on ICOM M700

I just got my HAM radio license (went all the way to Amateur Extra), with the expectation of using it on my eventual cruising sailboat. I've been looking at used marine radios and came across the ICOM M700 (not the M700PRO). I like the fact that the M700 can be easily tuned to any frequency, which is a plus for HAM operators, but not so great for most marine SSB users.

My question is: will it be more difficult to send emails via Winlink using the M700 vs more modern "data enabled" transceivers?

Thanks,
Howard
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Old 04-07-2016, 06:05   #2
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

M802 has an "email" button which calls up several presets, which adds some convenience, but that's the only advantage for Winlink and Sailmail AFAIK. A Pactor modem is almost essential but must be added to either of these radios in any case.

Main advantage of M802 is DSC.

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Old 04-07-2016, 06:17   #3
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

What Dockhead said

My radios lie betwen the 700 and the 'data enabled' .. a 710 and a 706.. but I think that the biggest difference is the 'email ready' sticker on the box the newer radio comes in.
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Old 04-07-2016, 06:25   #4
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Wow, thanks for the quick and helpful replies!

As a follow-up, I was hoping to bypass the expensive SCS modems and use WINMOR with a sound card. Obviously the M700 has no built-in sound card. Is there a viable (i.e. cheap) way to do this with a M700?
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Old 04-07-2016, 07:16   #5
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Ignore the last question. I did some searching and found an old thread that presented a good solution: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Seems I should drill holes in the radio for easy access!

Thanks again for all your help.
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Old 04-07-2016, 07:45   #6
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

There is a WINMOR group online which would be another good place to post your query. Odds are good there is already info there on setting up the 700 with WINMOR.

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...guid=350779028
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Old 04-07-2016, 08:48   #7
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

For Winmor you would probably want to buy one of these to put between radio and PC SignaLink USB Interface

Edit....ooops .. it seems that the 700 has no din plug to hook the Signalink up to....sorry.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:06   #8
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Thanks for the heads-up on the yahoo group, belizesailor. I've sent a request to join the group.

Thanks for the link El Pinguino. I was initially thinking of a temporary attachment when I needed to connect to a computer, but the device you mentioned would allow for a permanent connection...easy access so no need to drill holes.
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Old 04-07-2016, 14:14   #9
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Are you sure the 700 can transmit on all frequencies? I just read the handbook http://www.thiecom.de/ftp/icom/icm700/ic-m700.pdf and it seems to suggest Tx on marine bands only unless 'opened up'.

Also, hope you didn't miss my edit above.

If you just want ham bands buy an ic-718..
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Old 04-07-2016, 14:19   #10
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Howard,
Yes, that other thread is a good one....(of course I'm gonna' say that, I posted info there!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alchemist 66 View Post
Ignore the last question. I did some searching and found an old thread that presented a good solution: iCOM IC-M700 any good
But, a couple extra points here...

1) Since you'll be attempting data comms / accessing e-mail thru WINLINK, please have a look at the Sailmail site....read the Sailmail Primer, and follow their recommendations...
(yes, I know you'll not be using Sailmail, nor will you have a PACTOR modem, but you should follow all their recommendations anyway!)

https://sailmail.com/wp-content/uplo...2/smprimer.htm

https://sailmail.com/category/installation/

https://sailmail.com/

https://sailmail.com/wp-content/uplo...tm#Application Notes


2) Just an FYI...
The old M-700 is not a 100% duty-cycle rated radio...so, be aware that you will need to set your soundcard drive levels accordingly!! Use a bit lower power output!!
(and, this isn't just to keep the radio from overheating / damage....no, this is primarily to keep your data transmitted signals clean and error-free....you see, adjusting your drive levels to keep the M-700's output well below maximum, will actually improve your signal...sounds weird, but it's true!)


3) And, finally...my usual recommendation to watch the videos!!

Maritime HF comms in general
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ZDo_Jk3NB_Bt1y


Offshore Weather
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...zdjTJjHlChruyY


HF-DSC Comms
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ga2zYuPozhUXZX



I hope this helps..

Fair winds...

John
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Old 04-07-2016, 20:00   #11
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

El Pinguino, I looked through that M700 manual and you are right: it doesn't mention non-marine frequencies on factory settings. However, I came across an old story on using HAM frequencies with marine SSB radios that specifically stated that M700 could TX on HAM band "out of the box": Ham or SSB: why not both? - Ocean Navigator - January/February 2003. In any case, if it's not unlocked, I presume ICOM can unlock it upon presentation of a valid HAM license.

Thanks John! I would have never considered looking at the Sailmail website. That primer does cover a lot about data through marine SSB radios. Very useful!
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Old 04-07-2016, 21:45   #12
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alchemist 66 View Post
Wow, thanks for the quick and helpful replies!

As a follow-up, I was hoping to bypass the expensive SCS modems and use WINMOR with a sound card. Obviously the M700 has no built-in sound card. Is there a viable (i.e. cheap) way to do this with a M700?
AFAIK Winmor can't be used with Sailmail, and in any case is much slower and much less reliable than Pactor (at least III and IV). Pactor modem is expensive, but is a really really good investment if you plan to use email more than just casually playing around with it. Used Pactor II modem with the software upgrade to Pactor III is not all that expensive.

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Old 04-07-2016, 21:47   #13
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
AFAIK Winmor can't be used with Sailmail, and in any case is much slower and much less reliable than Pactor (at least III and IV). Pactor modem is expensive, but is a really really good investment if you plan to use email more than just casually playing around with it. Used Pactor II modem with the software upgrade to Pactor III is not all that expensive.

For Winmor, the sound card is in the computer, not in the radio. I believe the M700 has connections.

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Old 05-07-2016, 04:46   #14
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alchemist 66 View Post
El Pinguino, I looked through that M700 manual and you are right: it doesn't mention non-marine frequencies on factory settings. However, I came across an old story on using HAM frequencies with marine SSB radios that specifically stated that M700 could TX on HAM band "out of the box": Ham or SSB: why not both? - Ocean Navigator - January/February 2003. In any case, if it's not unlocked, I presume ICOM can unlock it upon presentation of a valid HAM license.

Thanks John! I would have never considered looking at the Sailmail website. That primer does cover a lot about data through marine SSB radios. Very useful!
If its like the 710, which I have, then its just a matter of changing software settings.
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Old 05-07-2016, 05:52   #15
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Re: Winlink on ICOM M700

I had a M700 onboard for several years, and used it with both Sailmail and Winlink. It was modified by a friend, who has a radio installation business, to provide the necessary TNC interface for the Pactor modem. I've never looked at Winmor, so I can't comment on its suitability for that interface.
I had no problems making contact with Sailmail and Winlink using that radio at the full 100W level, but I have no doubt that John is right that this might have produced a less than optimal signal.
I replaced the M700 with a M802 about 12 years ago for several reasons.
1. No remote control from the PC. One of the distinct advantages of using the Airmail client is that it will turn on the radio and set it to the desired send and receive frequencies if there is a remove control interface. The M802 has this interface, the M700 does not.
2. Difficult procedure for setting up the frequencies. Frequencies have to be preset using tiny little buttons on the radio face. To access these buttons the cover place on the face of the radio must be removed. The limited number of pre-set frequencies I found to be a major problem especially when the ship location and existing propagation made it difficult to connect to a station. I found I would have to try more than a dozen frequencies at time before I could get a connection. With the M700 that would require changing the preset frequencies, which is error-prone when dockside and not fun when underway.
3. Headphone jack on the back of the radio. This is only a problem if you use a headphone and access to the back of the radio is very limited. It was with my installation.
That said, the M700 was a solid radio. I only replaced it because the limitation described above (and some others) were important to me. It was a very good starter radio, which motivated me to get my ham license.

John
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