Radio 101

Radio 101

These pages are for a series dedicated to the basics of radio, but from a broader perspective outside of just ham radio. We’ve noticed a common theme online where people are wanting to learn more about radio, but much of the info is very ham radio focused. While ham radio is great, it’s not the only option and there may be a better option for your needs, so we’ve decided to create a series that delves into a broader spectrum of radio options.

Maybe you’re looking for long-distance communication over hundreds or thousands of miles, in which case ham radio might be your ideal choice. Or maybe privacy and off-grid encrypted communication are your priorities, in which case Meshtastic might be the best fit for you. Maybe you’re not interested in transmitting at all and simply want to monitor radio communications around you. If that’s the case, options like a scanner, SDR (Software-Defined Radio), or a communications receiver may be the way to go. Or you can even monitor communications world wide with a shortwave or HF radio. Whatever your situation may be, chances are this series will provide you the info you need to make an educated decision.

My journey into radio began at a young age, starting with a police scanner that used crystals for specific frequencies that had crystals for the local airport, police, and fire. Shortly thereafter, I became interested in shortwave radio and listening to signals across the globe. This eventually got me interested in Ham Radio and got my license around the age of 13. Then I branched out from that to explore other aspects of radio, including tracking aircraft with ADS-B using one of the early models of the Airnav Radarbox, capturing signals from satellites, decoding data signals, and sending data transmissions via packet radio and APRS.

With this series, our goal is to share the knowledge gained throughout the years and hopefully help you decide what radio system is best for your mission.

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