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OVERVIEW:

The ATCO Group Inc., organized in 1980, is located in Columbus, Ohio USA. We have about 90 members, 60 of them within a 50 mile (80 km) radius. Our main purpose is to further the exchange of information and cooperation between our members, promote ATV knowledge, operating excellence and conduct activities to advance the ATV general interest and welfare.

  • We operate a high profile ATV repeater with (5) ATV outputs: 427.25 MHz VSB, 1258 MHz FM, 1268 MHz DVB-S digital, 2433 MHz FM and 10.350 GHz FM and (4) ATV inputs: 439.25 MHz, 1280 MHz(analog), 1280 MHz(digital) and 2398 MHz located 650 feet (198 m) above street level and within 50 feet (15 m) of all antennas! Our digital DVB-S repeater signal is the first and still the only operational one in the USA!
  • We conduct weekly "net" meetings at 9:00 PM Tuesday on 147.48 MHz to introduce newcomers, discuss ATV topics and announce news. We also provide streaming 50 miles of Columbus or just passing through, please join in, you're always welcome.
  • The ATCO Newsletter is available for all members 4 times a year containing local events, ATV news, construction articles, tips/techniques, meeting announcements and whatever else we find of ATV interest. Archived newsletters can be viewed by all on our internet homepage at www.atco.tv.
  • ATCO helps to provide security video coverage for various local public events such as the annual Independence Day fireworks show in Columbus, Ohio (which historically draws over 500,000 observers), various parades, local air shows and airport disaster drill activity. Additionally, we provide local severe weather video observation that helps identify potential damaging storms to the public.
  • We host annual "Spring and Fall Events" to serve as formal club meetings along with a means to meet our members face to face, have a free lunch, conduct a short business meeting, engage in a discussion roundtable, host a mini hamfest and pass out door prizes. (No one goes home without a door prize!) We also have pizza parties to swap stories and eat pizza.

ATV REPEATER DETAILS:

Below are the sequenced ID patterns displayed continuously on 1245MHz (digital) and 10.350GHz (analog) when the repeater is not in use. When it's in use all (5) outputs simultaneously repeat the incoming video signal. Click on the title above to see the repeater detail summary.

DIGITAL DVB-S ATV:

Here we supply some basic information about digital DVB-S ATV. We believe that DVB-S is the correct choice for DATV in the USA and is justified in the discussion. Our repeater is the first and presently, the only ATV repeater using DVB-S in the USA. It has been in 24-7 operation since January 2004. Click on the title above for more information.

DIGITAL DVB-S DETAILS:

Here is a good explanation of DVB-S from Ken,W6HHC and Robbie, KB6CJZ in California also working on DVB-S Amateur TV. They are presently experimenting with this format and hope to incorporate it in their repeater soon. (10/30/09) Good luck, guys.

PLANNING A D-ATV STATION:

Here is a good explanation of how to plan for building a Digital ATV Station. This article will cover planning to create your own D-ATV station. But to a certain extent (especially in the US), Digital-ATV seems like a maze. There are plenty of decisions that need to be made to plan for a D-ATV station. Click on the title above for more information.

UNDERSTANDING SYMBOL-RATES, FEC AND RF BANDWITH:

Here is an article that will explain a few Digital-ATV concepts that are typically not understood by hams and even analog ATVers. Using the DVB-S standard to transmit a digital ATV signal involves understanding these concepts. Click on the title above for more information.

DIGITAL TV DEFINITIONS:

Click on the above title to get an idea of the various commercial digital television formats in use today.

LINKS TO OTHER ATV GROUPS:

We try to keep an up-to-date listing of other ATV home pages as well as locations of interest to ATV'ers. Sometimes it's hard to keep on top of this one because of frequent changes in providers so bear with us. Click on the title above to view the current list. Please inform us of any new or interesting URL's not listed as well as corrections to the ones already here. I'll revise as often as I can. Email me at towslee1@ee.net
Thanks. WA8RMC.

NEWSLETTERS:

Our group publishes an ATCO newsletter 4 times a year containing local events, late breaking ATV news, construction articles, tips/techniques and whatever else we can find that has ATV interest. This is not just a single page flyer with repeated old news. Each issue contains advertisement free 20+ pages of up-to-date information. Click on the title above to read the archived issues published. Only ATCO members can view the current year Newsletters, so click HERE or on the PAY DUES/ JOIN ATCO sidebar, fill out the form along with $10 to get each issue Emailed directly to you. Pay by check or through PayPal. I guarantee you'll like it!

NEWSLETTER CONSTRUCTION ARTICLE INDEX:

The ATCO Newsletters contain numerous construction articles about ATV. The list displayed by clicking on the title above will summarize them from the first Newsletter to present day. Enjoy!

TELEVISION P LEVEL ILLUSTRATIONS:

This chart illustrates the relative levels of P0 to P5 analog signals. (The digital comparisons are totally different. See the "Digital ATV" section for an explanation). Actual pictures were taken off the air through an attenuator to illustrate the signal levels and how a signal progressively stronger in 6dB increments appears on a monitor. P0 represents a barely perceptible signal and is the noise floor reference whereas P5 is a snow free picture 30dB stronger. Click on the sidebar or title above to view the color picture illustrations.

ATV EQUIPMENT SUPPLIERS:

Find some of your ATV stuff here! Click on the sidebar or title above to view a list of ATV equipment manufacturers. There is no endorsement of any of the manufacturers listed so buyer beware. If I or anyone else that I know of has had any trouble with a manufacturer, it won't be listed. As I get more info, I'll add manufacturers. Likewise, if I hear of any trouble, it'll be removed.

STREAMING VIDEO ON THE INTERNET:

Our Tuesday night 9PM nets are streamed onto the internet via the BATC website. I’ll keep it active from approximately 8:30PM till 10PM or when we close the net. If you are too far away to join our nets live, check in on the internet. I can see all check-ins and will acknowledge same. To join us on the internet, enter www.batc.tv and click on "ATV Repeaters." It’s a lot of fun…try it! Click on the above title for details.

ATV LOCATER MAP:

WB8LGA has prepared a great USA map locating all known ATVers. It's a great way to find the ATVers closest to you. Also provided is a topographical terrain "slice" option to locate ground elevations between selected locations. It's packed with details too numerous to illustrate here. Click on the above title to go to Charles' web page featuring the map. If you visit his site, be sure to log in and register your ATV location. That way other ATVers will be able to locate you. What a neat way to get ATVers closer together!