Sign Up!
Welcome to B.I.G. E.A.R.S.
Wednesday, May 22 2024 @ 01:58 AM EDT


NE4SC repeater Guidelines

Understanding PTT, Full Time and Hold-Off

There are three terms that are used in DMR you won’t hear about on any other digital mode. They are PTT, Full Time and Hold-Off. 

  • PTT which means the TG (Talk Group) has an “on demand” type link which requires the operator to Ker-chunk the TG in order to link it. Once the TG is linked, wait about a minute to proceed to insure you won’t collide with a QSO in progress. Once linked, a timer has begun on the connection for 10 minutes. If the operator does not key up again within the 10 minutes, the link will time out and close.

  •  Full Time is a TG that is connected by default while no PTT talkgroups are in use.

  • Hold-Off  is when a local operator activates a PTT talkgroup on the same TS (Timeslot) as a Full time TG. This will activate a 3 minute timer and mute the Full Time TG. If the operator on the PTT talkgroup doesn’t key up again within the 3 minute window, the Hold-Off will be released and the Full Time TG will return.


Scan before you call:

It is good practice to scan all TG on the repeater and listen for any local activity before you begin calling on the TG that you choose to. If you don’t, you may inadvertently disconnect another TG that someone else is already using. Some radios like Connect Systems and Tytera radios have a "Monitor" function. Make sure you are on the TG you will be calling on, then press your monitor button and listen for a miniute or so to see if anyone is on another TG on the same TS .


Pause Between QSO's :

As with all communications on large networks, ALWAYS give a 3 second pause after the other operator releases their PTT and Pause for 1 second after you key up before you begin speaking so all can hear your full QSO.


When announcing your presence:

Because many DMR users are either scanning or using receive groups, you should always say what talkgroup you are on. Otherwise even though they heard you, they will not know how to call you back. If you are announcing on a very wide area, give your city and state.


“This is WB4XYZ listening Southeast”
“This is WB4XYZ, Jeff, in South Carolina listening on North America”

When calling a station, also indicate what talkgroup you are on:

“AA4ABC, AA4ABC this is WB4XYZ on Statewide”
“AA4ABC, AA4ABC this is WB4XYZ on Conway Local”

The beep you hear is NOT A COURTESY TONE!

When the party you are talking with un-keys the microphone, you will normally hear a beep. This is NOT a courtesy tone, indicating you are good to go! It is the channel free indicator. In commercial services this is useful, as it is normally a dispatcher and a mobile talking, and they can call right back with no waiting. On ham radio we MUST LEAVE A GAP so others can break in. Since it takes a few seconds for a breaking party to key up and get a good tone, it is critical that you leave gaps. Count “One one thousand, two one thousand, three one thousand”. That will give you a rough idea how long to wait.


Move off a busy talkgroup if it is just two people talking

As DMR grows, the talkgroups will get more traffic. If you are just yakking with another local ham, consider moving to either “local” or one of the “TAC” channels. Of course “local” only works if you are on the same repeater. It is important to remember that even on Southeast, you may be keying up repeaters in potentially 4 states!


Do not rag-chew like you are on the HF bands

If you are prone to HF, you may tend to key down longer and get close to repeater time outs! Remember that VHF/UHF stuff is a more quick back and forth style of QSO. We have to do this to let others break in. This applies to analog repeaters as well.


Please ID as you would on analog

Even though the displays of many radios will show the calling station, assuming you have programmed it in, there is no exception to the ID rules. Follow FCC Part 97 rules on station identification.


Back to DMR Main Page



Last Updated Saturday, September 24 2016 @ 11:38 AM EDT|26,882 Hits View Printable Version


First, we hope that you enjoy the communication systems that we provide all around South Carolina as well as South Eastern North Carolina. 
The operation, maintenance, and upkeep are all funded privately.  At a bare minimum, we have five monthly internet service bills to pay. 
Please consider a one-time or recurring donation to help offset some of these costs.  Anything is greatly appreciated.

My Account

Sign up as a New User
Lost your password?


Get your NE4SC T-Shirts at

Who's Online

Guest Users: 17

Upcoming Events

There are no upcoming events

Random Image

Myrtle Beach Weather

A feed could not be found at A feed with an invalid mime type may fall victim to this error, or SimplePie was unable to auto-discover it.. Use force_feed() if you are certain this URL is a real feed.