Channels not used on GB7MB

Hi folks ..   I Hope you’re all doing okay now after we had a tiny reshuffle on GB7MB.
Here’s a few channels that i see in various codeplugs occasionally, but they can be safely deleted now.
They may be named slightly different in your codeplug though.. but they are generally named something similar.
You probably don’t have these channels programmed in, (a good thing)  but if you do – its prob best to delete them.

UK wide 235 on slot 2  –  this needs to go. It’s not used.
North America – Tg 3 (either slot)  this needs to go too..
Worldwide English on slot 2 – this needs to go also.


You should only have:

Talkgroup slot commonly called / named in CPS
Talkgroup 1 slot 1 Worldwide calling & very short QSOs
Talkgroup 2 slot 1 inter – European QSO
Talkgroup 9 slot 1 Local channel (secondary, backup used for local QSOs only if s2 in use)
Talkgroup 13 slot 1 WW English,   English Worldwide,   Eng WW,   WW Eng 13
Talkgroup 235 slot 1 UK Wide     UK Wide 235



and slot 2 talkgroups: below:



Talkgroup 8 slot 2 Roaming (Northwest UK with HM, PN LP and NM)
Talkgroup 9 slot 2 Local QSO channel (Main)


This little move around is to free up slot 2 and move the non-local stuff over to slot 1, helping to stop users getting the busy signal when they TX sometimes..  You may still get the busy signal occasionally, but its either just the repeater giving its callsign.. on FM  (yes, it does this)  or its us testing roaming, which is not fully implemented on GB7MB  yet.
There will be an article about roaming on TG8 on here, when it is enabled and tested.


All work, text and images © GB7MB

A change of slot..

Well, after local users being locked out of the local repeater due to non-local traffic tying up both slots, a decision was taken, after considering the facts, to drop a busy DMR-MARC talkgroup from slot 2.
The talkgroup dropped was ‘Uk wide’,  ID 235.

But fear not local people, UK wide has not gone from GB7MB – it’s still there, but it’s on slot 1 instead. so please discontinue 235 slot 2 use, (because it wont go anywhere) and fire up your MotoTRBO CPS or CS700 software, and in the UK wide entry, change the drop down to ‘repeater slot 1‘ instead of 2.  Users concerned about whether this will still allow inter-UK contacts need not worry, as many other UK DMR repeaters now are changing their UK wide (235) to slot 1 as well, thus ensuring its continuation, while allowing more local slot 2 talkgroups to be almost always free for locals, instead of before, when inbetween overs, TG 235 could rudely jump in to your QSO and effectively elbow you off slot 2 if you politely left  ‘too long’ a courtesy gap.

Also GB7MB carries talkgroup 8 now, (on slot 2) talkgroup 8 is a special ‘roaming’ talkgroup and this, in effect, links GB7MB up with other local repeaters GB7HM,  GB7LP,  GB7PN and GB7NM and shortly this talkgroup will prove to be very useful indeed for the NorthWest of the UK. example codeplugs and tutorials will appear on this website in due course.

Roaming will allow you to drive from up in Cumbria (say), down through this area, down around Manchester, over to Liverpool and much of North Wales without you changing channel – it is automatic, all done in your rig by comparing repeaters ‘roaming beacon’ signal strengths, and switching channels for you accordingly.

Regional talkgroups are important, and the more use that can be made of them, the better, as it reduces traffic on wider area talkgroups, like UK wide, as DMR is essentially a 2 RF channel system, proper and logical assignment of talkgroups & slots is a must if we are to keep the advantages brought to us by TDMA.

Further changes in the UK are likely, as DMR is quite a new thing to amateur radio, and it’s useage will continue to grow, and some talkgroups will turn out to be good ideas, some not, and the hiccups that will surely follow, certainly make this area of the hobby quite interesting.

In the MotoTRBO CPS and CS700 simply change UK wide to repeater slot 1


slotty cs


All work, text and images © GB7MB

Planned work.

GB7MB may suffer from a few interruptions today as a few adjustments are made. It may also be disconnected from the network so that we can upgrade some of the equipment. This could last until quite late this evening.

IMPORTANT: poss firmware bug MotoTRBO 2.4 – random reboots in scan mode

It’s becoming apparent that there may be a firmware bug in MotoTRBO firmware 2.4 for Gen2 radios (DM4xx DP4xxx series) Obviously it will not show itself on all sets for all users, nor in the exact same way.

The error seems to show up as random reboots while the set is in scan mode – also unusual random flickering of the green RX LED is noticed too – suggestions that it may be connected to a mixed mode scan are still being tested by a number of UK Amateurs.     For what it’s worth, I would personally suggest if you notice these random reboots to perhaps comment on this site or on the UK Digital Amateurs Facebook Group or perhaps on the DMR Digital Mobile Radio page by Don VA3XPR or here on the excellent site and all-round place of knowledge a recent thread about it on the P25 forums 


GB7MB now live

We are pleased to say that GB7MB is now active and connected the DMR-MARC network.

Countdown to GB7MB

It should be all systems go this evening, as we expect just after 8pm this evening to be setting up GB7MB from it’s site – although it will not be in it’s own shack proper – that will come later, as will the Andrews Heliax feeder & the bit of mast work that is needed.

Either way, we will be driving down to Heysham in a couple of hours, hoping for a successful installation. We will have tweaks and alterations to do soon, as we begin improvements at the site, and make preperations for project 2.

TG (talkgroup) 8 roaming will appear on GB7MB shortly, enabling users to roam freely between GB7LP in Liverpool, GB7HM in Caergywrie (near Wrexham) and GB7PN in Prestatyn.
This will be announced on here, Twitter and the Facebook group as soon as it is online.

Hopefully we will hear you tonight, or very soon on GB7MB


GB7MB Talkgroup config

Important Talkgroup information below:
These are subject to change, as DMR-MARC and GB7MB evolve
Use only these Talkgroups. TG 8 roaming with HM,PN, and LP will be available (very) soon,

All colour code 1
Timeslot 1

TG 1 – Worldwide calling
TG 2 – European QSOs
TG 13 – Worldwide English Language QSOs
TG 235 – UK wide

Timeslot 2

TG 8 – Roaming
TG 9 – Local

Programming up for GB7MB (again)

GB7MB frequencies are listed on the UK repeaters web site, and they’re here too.
The repeater transmits on 439.700 – and listens for you on 430.700.

Program your transceiver accordingly:
Transmit:        430.700
Receive on:      439.700
colour code:     1
Talkgroup :       9  only (for now)

For testing, we will use the standard DMR-MARC   ‘Local Talkgroup’, Talkgroup 9 slot 2,
and, until posted on the GB7MB Facebook GroupGB7MB’s Twitter feed and the GB7MB pages

We ask you to only use Talkgroup 9 for all operations until all Talkgroups are published in these places.

When on-air, please note No Private calls will be allowed. however, Text messaging is allowed


GB7MB gets NOV


GB7MB gets NOV for 439.700… We will be hoping to get it on-air ASAP – and hopefully DMR-MARC connected soon after. watch here or our Twitter feed for upcoming News and Updates



You know what ?

I think there’s too many white backgrounds on the web – there, i’ve said it. (yes, i know this site is bright, but it may be changing design slightly, soon) But If you have a headache, or maybe it’s late at night, or both, do you really think it’s healthy to be staring in to a light for hours on end ? – i don’t, because I get migraines and some photophobia, of course, if i have a migraine, the computers and radios are switched off and i go away..  so, i am careful to my eyes and i don’t stare into lights unnecessarily, even when i have no headache.

Pity then, that most websites are dark text on a light background.  I understand the idea of skeumorphism where it seems this idea comes from, as throughout history, printing is just dark ink on dried pulp, so i imagine it was decided this makes sense on electronic displays too.

I disagree.  To add to my ‘problem’, I’m a night owl too, so I’m often up late, typing away – but at 3AM  i’m not sat here with full house-lights switched on, it would make no sense.

So what to do ?   every site is different and that’s a problem … or is it ?

I’ll be discussing Firefox here, because that’s the most popular browser and is cross-platform, although similar add-ons can be found for other browsers, and Stylish is available for other browsers too.

First up, is a Firefox Add-on called No Squint  ..  i shan’t go into much detail about the add-ons themselves, but this lets you adjust the page zoom on Firefox, which is kind of redundant, because Firefox already has zoom + and – toolbar buttons – it’s just that they’re not enabled by default.

NoSquint does however, let you customise text and background colour, on either a site-by-site basis, or on all sites globally, which may be all that you want or need.. and  NoSquint‘s  default zoom level is 120% anyway, globally, so there will be less wasted space on your widescreen monitor.. as many sites still have a thin paragraph of content in the middle of the screen – and wasted space either side, just in case we’re all still using an old  4:3 800 x 600 CRT monitor from years ago..

Next up is Stylish  – it doesn’t do anything on it’s own, but it allows for much more fun and customisation than Nosquint does !

It’s main job is website customisation, There are hundreds of styles for the most popular sites, tweaks and fixes that other people have shared, but the less popular sites will have had nobody creating specific styles for them, so use ‘Global styles’ for all remaining websites, some styles just work on just one site, other styles change every site.

If you like this idea, I’m typing this using a global style called  Midnight Surfing  which can be found (like many more) at Stylish’s user-submitted styles site User   so have a look to see what sites they have..  some hide Youtube comments, or remove the ads on Facebook and that chat box and all that other nonsense,  of course some styles don’t work perfectly – and some styles may work, but hide pictures or parts of the site you do use, and you have option to preview them before you apply them anyway.  Lets go through finding a dark global theme for Stylish.

As you see, I like my Firefox with the classic layout, add-on bar at the bottom, which is where i placed the Stylish ” S ” icon. by default it will likely be up at the top-right corner on the Firefox toolbar.


whatever webpage you are on, to search for some styles for it, simply click the icon and select ‘Find New Styles for this site’  Easy huh ?

the Userstyles website will open and you can scroll through and see which sites suit you, and work well.

if you want global styles – click ‘advanced’ and select ‘global’ and if you were looking for dark global themes, that’s where you need to search.

advanced styles

I always install the Safari Font Rendering style too, for when i’m using light backgrounds, because Firefox’s font rendering on all three major platforms is still poor, this style invokes either anti-aliasing or more likely, sub-pixel hinting.

Another highly recommended dark style is MyFavolors which seems to be a good one too. there are hundreds more.

So Far, so good.. you even installed a dark theme in Firefox too ? good.

I even found a Yaesu FT 920 Firefox theme (my main HF rig) but now, i can’t see what i’m typing.  

Why are backlit keyboards not standard on all computers by now ? all cellphones since about 1985 have, but we are behind the times already with this, many (outrageously expensive) Amateur radio sets still do not have illuminated buttons. it’s 2015, and Yaesu, Icom and Kenwood are still fobbing Hams off with backwards tech, (who mentioned FDMA) – thank goodness for the likes of Motorola where i dont have to switch a lamp or torch on to change frequency or find a button ! The same goes with computers, or any electronic device nowadays, everthing has buttons now.. or is it only ‘PC Gamers’ who use their PCs in low light levels, because most illuminated keyboards are trash, and they look trashy too, or are some juvenile design, like Darth Vader’s sunday best helmet… or something..

To see my keyboard in low light, I bought a Apple Macbook Pro 15″ not because I’m a fanboi, I’m REALLY NOT,  but because it’s got a proper, high quality backlit keyboard, and the thing is made of metal, not cheap black plastic, where you need a torch or keyboard lamp if typing at night.. forget buying those long flexible gooseneck USB LED lights too – they stress your USB socket and will make your laptop require repair eventually. isn’t it time accessibility was extended to keyboards on PCs and Amateur Radio Gear ?


Here’s an example – a Dark Google… so why buy sunglasses or headache pills ?

dark google


All work, text and images © GB7MB

Using QCII signalling to generate a 1750hz toneburst on a MotoTrbo set

It’s seldom needed these days, but there are still some repeaters requiring a 1750hz toneburst (remember those ?) here’s a trick i use to make my DM4600’s generate a 1750hz tone.. it’s pretty simple, so here’s a quick ‘How To’

No claims of originality are made for this tip, but it’s much more flexible than pre-programming a 5-tone signalling FM channel from the offing, as you’re stuck then, and this enables you to TX a 1750hz tone whatever FM freq you are on, and from within the DM4600’s menu, (or mic if you have the IMPRES mic) by easily sending a QC II signal – all we do here is set it to 1750hz

In the CPS – under signalling systems, find QC II – here i renamed mine to “QC1750”


in the right-hand column – here’s what i have it set as, it’s set at basically the defaults anyway.
It’s not too important anyway for our purposes..





Right, now scroll down to ” Contacts ”



I renamed it to 1750 – Then, in the right-hand pane, set it something like this – changing ‘ Tone A freq (hz) to 1750. There won’t be a valid QCII code for 1750, but so what ! You can decide what duration to set too, you can try short, i can’t remember why i chose long as it shows here,




i did this in 2013 so i don’t remember.

Anyway, now that’s done, check your work (and mine!) – and write your codeplug back.
All you need to do now to annoy people with 1750hz is to call up your DM4600/4800 menu.. go into “contacts”, then select “QCII” then “1750” and press buttons – you will see the spinny round thing on the menu, and the rig will TX a 1750hz tone burst

Apologies for any mistakes (if you see them,) and if it doesn’t work, blame my bad memory.