All posts by Alec_VK4AZ

DV Leaders


Regional Queensland leading the way for Digital Voice

Central Queensland now has the best digital voice coverage in Australia while the big cities seem to be lagging behind. From helicopter lifts to access on quad bikes nothing is stopping us from moving into the future of digital voice. The DSTAR experience on our multimode repeaters is fantastic since upgrading from the Arduino Due MMDVM to the STM32 Nucleo MMDVM. The Pi STAR image has also been the most popular choice for setting up your own hotspot. The momentum has not stopped up here in the north with more and more amateur radio operators coming on-board and giving the digital modes a go! We are encouraging other clubs to follow our lead and start converting under utilised analog repeaters to digital voice repeaters. It truly is a lot of fun to build your own digital repeater from scratch. Check out the multiprotocol reflector at



Maleny DSTAR repeater gets upgraded

Mark Kyle VK4KZK has been busy building a new 2m repeater for the Maleny site. VK4RDS 146.7375MHz -600KHz has now been kitted out with a MMDVM modem and a Pi-Star image. DSTAR P25, C4FM and DMR are supported on this new setup. The DSTAR only repeater remains unchanged on 438.550 MHz -5.2MHz. Mark has built in a few smarts to this setup such as remote power cycle and 3G modem connection for internet access. Sunshine coast radio amateurs can make use of well priced second hand VHF radios such as the Tait 9100 p25 radios easily found on ebay. Dont forget to try the new multimode reflector DCS389D. This special reflector allows operators in all the different digital voice modes to talk to each other. For example I can talk DSTAR to the other party that is on DMR. We are really starting to see some amazing progress in the DV space. These multimode reflectors are a step change in what you can achieve using digital voice modes. They allow all the different flavours of digital modes to talk to each other!

DSTAR makes its way to outback Queensland

Greg, VK4VBU in Longreach outback Queensland has completed his D-Star Hotspot that will service the town and surrounding area. The hotspot is using DVRPTR v1 modem, Raspberry Pi3 and Tait tm8200 radio into a diamond collinear mounted above the roof line of the house. DSTAR hotspots are also active in Gladstone, Bowen, Mt Isa and Gympie.

The hotspot frequency for Longreach is 145.150MHz


Further DSTAR coverage is available all around Queensland via these repeaters

VK4RBX Ipswich
VK4RDS Maleny and Sunshine Coast
VK4RMA Rockhampton
VK4RBD Blackwater and Coalfields
VK4RAS Moranbah
VK4HTN Sapphire and Rubyvale
VK4RBM Mackay and Coalfields
VK4RSA Sarina and Mackay
VK4RUS Sarina + Bruce highway South
VK4RBY Mackay + Bruce highway North

All repeater frequencies are listed in the latest repeater list from the WIA found here at this link Repeater Lists

During the holidays the Black Mountain repeater site upgrade was completed. This included a replacement of the home brew 70cm repeater with a new “Swinton Standard” repeater chassis. A home brew multimode 2m repeater has been introduced to this site to provide overlapping coverage together with 2m VK4RSA Sarina multimode to the south. The new repeater controller houses the powerful Odroid SBC which uses an ocotacore processor. The 2m radio shelf interfaces to the mmdvm modem and the 70cm shelf interfaces to the DSTAR DVRPTRv1 board and both modems hang off the Odroid single board computer. The site has also been upgraded with remote monitored CCTV and intruder alarm system.

Please try the new multimode 2m repeater 146.650MHz -600KHz (P25, DMR and DSTAR)

Multimode repeater controller has two modems and Odroid single board computer

DSTAR available in Bowen QLD

Mick, VK4CMW in Bowen has completed his D-Star Hotspot that will service the Bowen and surrounding area. The hotspot is using DVRPTR v1 modem, Raspberry Pi3 and Motorola M120 Radio into a home brew J-Pole antenna at 15m.

The hotspot frequency is 145.725


New DSTAR repeater at the Gemfields

New DSTAR repeater at the Gemfields commissioned

438.725MHz -5MHz



Located near Emerald in central Queensland. The Gemfields area includes the towns of Sapphire and Rubyvale famous for unique gemstones. The new repeater has been built around Tait 8200 radios, DVRPTRv1 and Raspberry Pi. The repeater will be linked to DCS028Q and is sponsored by Bob VK4HTN. Thanks Bob for the internet connection and access to the 40m tower. We are also hearing talk of two other DSTAR repeaters in the pipeline for Longreach and Mt Isa areas.