This post will be quick. I just wanted to highlight something new that I just learned about Pi-Star hotspots. This is specific for those running the Pi-Star software. I was trying to show my wife digital voice radio using Yaesu System Fusion. I set the Pi-Star to the Parrot, which is a private room for testing BER and voice quality. Think of it as a self radio check room so you don’t have to do a radio check in a populated room.
I wanted to show her how it worked. I told her to just hit PTT, wait 1/2 second, give her call, wait again, and release the PTT. She did that and nothing. I did it with my radio and heard my voice come back. This was really odd. With myself tuned to the frequency, I keyed up again and she heard me directly, as the hotspot is on simplex, and then she heard the Parrot repeat my call. She was hearing it. She tried again. I could hear her through my radio, but the hotspot wasn’t receiving her signal. This happened before with me because the programming software tries to set an offset. I checked. No offset. I pulled up the hotspot config menu. There was a setting I remember seeing earlier in the day that I figured I would try. Before that, I had her transmit again. She didn’t show up on the station list that appears on the landing page. I checked one setting.
Highlighted above in the red box is the Node Type. I’ve always had it set to private since it was in my house, running on 10 mW of power. I switched this to public. She keyed up and tried again. The Parrot repeated everything back.
My best guess as to what happened was the node was programmed to my callsign. My radio also contains my callsign. The hotspot hears a transmission but won’t accept it if the callsign of the radio doesn’t match the callsign of the hotspot when Node Type is set to Private.
If you have a Pi-Star hotspot and wish for others to use it, switch the Node Type to Public. This will ensure that everyone can use it. This isn’t intended for long distance communication, but you may have guests at your house or use the hotspot at events, like a club meeting or hamfest. For me, my wife has her license with her radio, programmed with her callsign. If you plan to have others use your hotspot, set Node Type to Public.
Thank you for reading. I know this was short, but a simple post could solve an easy issue. This is the type of posts I intended for this blog. Leave a comment with any questions. Follow on social media for the latest news. Thank you again. 73.
One thought on “Something New Learned About Pi-Star Hotspots”
Very interesting, but it makes complete sense.
Since I only ever use my pi-star hotspot with my radio, it shouldn’t come up. But good to know.