I have just got back from a week long drive throughout NSW, I even managed to squeeze in some radio play.
Recently as part of a SOTA demo, I pulled the Portable Pi set up out to also show it off. To my horror I discovered the 12v to 5v step down that powers my pi was NOISY - like s5-s7 in the relative radio silence of a SOTA summit.
Additionally, there is a quirk of the Samsung Galaxy A Tab forms a central component of the portable kit, it needs a very defined voltage to charge while turned on. 2 birds with one stone! The powerworx Anderson power pole to 2 female USB (3A) - they are SILENT, it's amazing.
So while the picture below looks like a MESS, it was taken after I did some troubleshooting (no audio, had the mic and the audio cable around the wrong way - DUH)
Below is my 817ND, Raspberry Pi3, USB GPS, ZLP Audio interface, 40w Amp (not used in this project...yet), Light Saver Max Solar & Lithium power pack, SOTA Beams Voice Compressor and the hub of the whole operation is the SOTA Beams Anderson PowerPoles distrobution box.
So with the hardware sorted, some new capabilities have been added. HF APRS using FSK on 40m (below was one location packet from the testing location). While 30m is the normal HF APRS band, that band is restricted to the highest license level in Australia so there is a small community using 40M here.
Also added recently was the super new mode of FT8CALL, the FT8 speed but actual keyboard contacts on HF bands. I managed to have 2 with the West Coast USA as well as Philippines.
Check out the new mode on the video below