W7PXL-R EchoLink Node

What is EchoLink?

Imagine you’re out of town too far from the repeater to participate in our weekly net or on-the-air meeting.  You can use the EchoLink app on your phone, or the program downloaded and running on your computer, log in to the W7PXL-R node and live stream your voice to the 2 meter rig (attached to the node’s computer) and transmit your voice to the repeater.  Think of it like a remote control station except multiple people can log in and share its use.  The node consists of a computer (connected to the Internet), an and a 2 meter radio tuned to the club’s 146.72 repeater.

If you have never used EchoLink before, go to EchoLink.org to verify your call sign and you can get started.  Doing so also allows you to use other repeaters across the country and around the world.

Like most new things, this will take some time to get used to, but we hope it will be a benefit to you and the club.

Things to Know

  • Our W7PXL-R node went public July 1, 2020, and is limited to hams who are paid members of the Valley Radio Club for 2019 or 2020, and those whose memberships are currently pending.
  • After testing, it will only allow hams who are current paid members for the club.
  • The node currently only allows 20 EchoLink users at a time–though this can change depending on bandwidth use
  • During testing, the node will sometimes be deliberately taken off-line to adjust settings or to move it to other locations to test durability and proper location.
  • There is a VOX delay on the node, so the first 0.6-0.7 seconds of audio into EchoLink will be clipped.  Always key the EchoLink transmit button, take a breath, then talk.
  • There is significant latency (0.5 – 2 second delay) in the communication over the Internet using EchoLink, which varies with each user and situation.   This latency can make doing a quick check-in or quickly jumping into an on-the-air conversation difficult.  Always turn down your two meter radio when using EchoLink. Those doing net control will need to wait 4 seconds or more when calling for check-ins so those doing so over the Internet can be heard.

Troubleshooting tips

  1. “Access denied” notices are probably due to not being a current dues paying member.  If you have paid, email our treasurer at treasurer@valleyradioclub.org and we’ll resolve it as soon as we can.  If you’re not a member, see the details on our Club Information page.
  2. When moving from a home WiFi to the cell network, restart the EchoLink application on your phone. Do the same when moving from the cell network to home WiFi.  There appears to be an issue with the cell phone application when moving between a home wireless network and the cell data network while the EchoLink application is running on your phone.
  3. Do not leave the radio tuned to monitor 146.72 MHz while using the W7PXL-R EchoLink node. If you do so, you will hear increasingly louder echos, and so will everyone else.
  4. If there is a VU meter on your EchoLink app showing you your modulation, please use it.

If you’re still having problems, please also check out the support pages at EchoLink.org.