This Is How It Goes Amateur Radio Stories we missed June 2010 The Codec2 Project: Next-Generation Audio Codecs and Vocoders for Two-Way Radio Introduction The digital voice system used by Radio Amateurs is based on the proprietary vocoder. The details of the AMBE algorithm are a trade-secret. Even manufacturers of AMBE-containing equipment like don't know how AMBE works. ICOM buys AMBE as a chip that functions as a 'black box'. They have no access to the algorithm. AMBE is also used in the AOR and digital HF systems and Alinco Digital, and the While commercial and public-service radio systems could get along with a proprietary codev, it's a dead-end for Amateur radio.
D*STAR, with its AMBE codec, or any modulation system that depends on trade secret and intellectual property protection, can not possibly represent a viable future for Amateur Radio. Our highly experimental service needs the basic freedom to use, understand and improve our technology. Obviously, much of the new development and experimentation in Amateur Radio is done in software. The use of PC sound card coupled software modulation systems like is normal for Radio Amateurs today. Those on the leading-edge use fully software-defined radio systems, like the SDR-1000 and SDR-5000 from and the USRP board from But how can these systems inter-operate with D*STAR voice, and other modes using the AMBE codec? To do so legally, they must use the a $200 device incorporating an AMBE chip, which plugs into a computer via USB.
The DV Dongle, with its little DSP chip, doesn't provide a performance acceleration over a software codec running on the blazingly fast CPUs available with modern computers. Meine Tierarztpraxis Einsatz Auf Dem Land. Its only purpose is to provide access to a trade-secret algorithm that isn't available to Radio Amateurs in any other legitimate form. The Solution Obviously, AMBE could be replaced by Open Source software, eliminating an unnecessary high cost, opening the door for experimentation in voice coding algorithms, and providing an path for the incorporation of digital voice into AMSAT satellites.