New Hoseline available with stunning new features!

The BrandMeister DMR development team has been working on a new web-based talkgroups audio streaming platform, known as “Hoseline”. It has been re-programmed from scratch and packs a lot of new jaw-dropping features. See and hear for yourself:

New interface

The Hoseline homepage shows a list of “blocks”. Each block represents a talkgroup, along with the current or last transmission information. New blocks will appear as new traffic comes up. If you want to listen to a talkgroup, simply click on the corresponding block.

To avoid clutter, only talkgroups between 90 and 9999 are showing up. You can listen to talkgroups above this limit by using the “Multiple Talkgroup Listening” option (see below).

Single Talkgroup Listening

When you click on one block from the homepage, you will register to this talkgroup, and any QSO will play on your speakers. If you click on another block, you will be unregistered from the previous talkgroup and registered to listen to the talkgroup matching the new block you clicked on.

Multiple Talkgroup Listening

If you click on the “Player” link at the top right of the page, you will have the ability to select multiple talkgroups (using the drop-down list, or typing the talkgroup number directly). You will see the list of talkgroups showing up in Talkgroup traffic will start playing right away in a list of bubbles. Audio will start playing right away for talkgroups in your list. You can remove a talkgroup by clicking on the “X” after the number.

Solo Mode

When you are in the player, looking at multiple talkgroups you registered to; you may click on a bubble’s talkgroup number to enable Solo Mode. This will mute all other talkgroups while keeping this one active. You can click again this talkgroup number to exit Solo Mode and listen to traffic on all groups listed. Clicking on another bubble number moves the Solo Mode to this new group.

New features

As you use the new Hoseline, you will notice these new awesome features only available on the Brandmeister DMR network:

Improved Audio Quality

BM’s developer’s secret sauce is bringing a stunning and unmatched audio quality. You won’t believe your ears!

Real-Time Vu Meter

A brand new VU-Meter was added inside the player, just below the talkgroup number(s). It measures the audio before AGC. It is done within the BrandMeister platform and reported independently from the supplied audio. The color coding is as follow:
– Yellow: less than -30 dBm
– Green: between -30 and 0 dBm
– Red: between 0 and +8 dBm

Multi-browser support

Most modern browsers are compatible. Whether you like Chrome, Firefox, or Safari, the new Hoseline will work for you on desktop or mobile devices!

Volume Normalizing

Are you tired of turning the volume up and down because people are coming in louder or quieter than others? So were we, and now the volume on Hoseline is automatically normalized. Everyone’s audio is at the same level!

Auto-Reconnect

Are you having you internet connection hiccups? No problem, Hoseline will seamlessly reconnect you as soon as your internet connection is back.

Instant play on subscribe and unsubscribe

If you click a talkgroup block or add a talkgroup in the player where there is current traffic, the audio will play instantly. You will not need to wait for the next transmission. Likewise, if you are subscribed to several talkgroups and two of them become active around the same time, you will hear audio from the talkgroup that started a transmission first. If you decide to unregister from this talkgroup while its audio is playing, the second talkgroup audio will begin right away without waiting for the next transmission. It’s that fast!

Subscriptions list auto-save

You closed your browser, or Windows restarted your computer without asking ? No problem, your talkgroups subscription list is saved and will be in the player when you go back to the new hoseline page. Just click on play and you’re back where you were!

We hope that you will enjoy this new version of Hoseline. While it is currently hosted on a separate URL, it become part of the new version of Brandmeister DMR Dashboard when it is released. If you have questions or comments, contact us on Telegram or drop a note on the support portal

New talkgroup 98 dedicated to tests

There is now a dedicated international talkgroup on BrandMeister for all your tests: TALKGROUP 98.

You can test the audio on your new radio or software as many times as you want, for as long as you want, without worrying to disrupt a QSO.

If you like helping fellow digital ham operators, please stand-by on this talkgroup whenever you can to provide assistance and feedback.

73’s and happy tests on talkgroup 98 !

Hotspot security password now required when connecting to USA BM Masters

Hotspots connecting to a BrandMeister Master Server in the USA will now require their users to set a hotspot security password. The configuration change will happen on the following dates:

Master 3101 : November 27th, 2020

Master 3102: December 4th, 2020

Master 3103: December 11th, 2020

Users who already have a password set don’t need to take any action at this time.

For general step by step instructions, you may refer to this post. The link can also be found in the FAQ section of the USA Wiki Page under the Hotspot Configurations section.

UK Master Server 2341 IP change

The UK BrandMeister DMR master has been moved to a new IP address: 51.68.220.36. This is due to unforeseen circumstances that unfortunately did not allow us to provide early notice.

Repeater owners currently pointing to the UK Master 2341 “old IP address” will have to change their repeater configuration. The old IP address might respond to MMDVM protocol but is disconnected from any BrandMeister traffic.

Gateway administrators (OpenBridge, YSF, XLX, WiresX, etc.) need to contact BrandMeister support via the Support Portal or Telegram BM UK Group to re-configure their connection.

Hotspot users please refresh your masters list to ensure the UK Master 2341 is updated with the new IP address 51.68.220.36. The old IP address might respond to MMDVM protocol but is disconnected from any BrandMeister traffic.

Stay safe, and happy QSO !

How to select a BrandMeister Master Server?

One of the main distinguishing feature of BrandMeister DMR is that the network is accessible from any master. Therefore you have a choice of 40+ master servers to connect your repeater or hotspot. How to choose?

The best performance will not always be with the master server that is closest to you geographically. Rather, it depends on your internet service provider’s capacity/peerings and the one of the master server.

The key factors for best DMR performance are jitter, then latency. Below is the most simple method to find the best master for you, without any special software.

Step 1: Go to the Brandmeister DMR Master Servers list, and select which master(s) you want to consider. Click on the “Status” button and grab the IP address for the master in your browser’s address bar.

Step 2: From the same network as your repeater or hotspot, run a “ping” command for 1 to 2 minutes to each master you are considering. Perform this test during the time of the day where your typically have the most traffic.

Step 3: Check that the round-trip delay provided by each ping (called latency) stays consistent, without any major variations (called jitter). See the examples below:

Good (No Jitter):

~ ping -t 74.91.118.251

Pinging 74.91.118.251 with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=71ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=73ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=69ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=68ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=71ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=74ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=70ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=69ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=69ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=68ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=69ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=69ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=70ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=72ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=70ms TTL=54

You can see that there are no major latency variations.

Bad (Jitter):

~ ping -t 74.91.118.251

Pinging 74.91.118.251 with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=71ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=73ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=354ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=366ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=219ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=72ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=70ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=77ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=983ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=875ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=917ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=75ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=72ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=819ms TTL=54
Reply from 74.91.118.251: bytes=32 time=668ms TTL=54

You can observe here the big variances in latency, indicating jitter. Symptoms of jitter include choppy/garbled audio and delayed/dropped transmissions.

Step 4:

Once you have found some masters with no jitter, pick the one offering the lowest latency (smallest ping time).

For any further question, please refer to the BrandMeister Support Portal.

Using DMR IDs on BrandMeister

The support team noticed a lot of questions are being sent regarding the use of IDs in radios, hotspots and repeater. Here is how BrandMeister recommends to use DMR IDs based on the different use case.

Accessing BrandMeister DMR with your radio and a public repeater or hotspot

All you have to worry about is the codeplug of your radio. In the configuration, you will use the 7-digit DMR ID your call-sign has been assigned (for example: 2060945) and the proper TX/RX frequencies.

Accessing BrandMeister DMR using your radio and personal hotspot

In your radio’s codeplug, configure your 7-digit personal DMR ID as assigned by HamDigital or RadioID. (For example: 2060945).

In your hotspot configuration, use your 7-digit personal DMR ID followed by “01”, for a total of 9-digits. (For example: 206094501). If you have more than one hotspot, use the suffix 02, 03, etc. Always make sure that all your hotspots are using different frequencies.

Do not add only “1”, “2”, etc. for a total of 8 digits, as this won’t work.

You do not need to request a 6-digit repeater ID for a hotspot, even if more than one person is using it, and even if it is dual-timeslot. The 6-digit repeater IDs are designed for large-coverage repeaters.

Providing a BrandMeister DMR repeater for the general public

If you would like to setup a repeater to allow a larger audience to access the BrandMeister DMR network, you will have to apply for a repeater ID with HamDigital.org or RadioID.net depending on your geographical location. Use this ID as-is in your repeater codeplug configuration and you are done.

If you are planning to deploy more than one repeater you will need to request a new 6-digit repeater ID for each repeater. Do not add “01”, “02” suffixes in each repeater configuration.

BrandMeister DMR reaches 50,000 Self-Care Accounts

In May 2020, the number of amateur radio operators who have created a Self-Care account on the BrandMeister DMR network has reached 50,000 unique call-signs.

This milestone is a good opportunity to look back at the exponential growth of the network since it started just 4 years ago, and to say thank you to all those who made it happen: developers, users, bloggers, documentation writers, support teams and master admins.

2016

2020

To register your self-care account, go to https://brandmeister.network/?page=register

BrandMeister DMR reflectors support ending by end of 2020

The reflectors feature was implemented in the early years of BrandMeister to provide a compatibility with other DMR networks including this functionality and allow reflectors-based hotspots to connect to BrandMeister.

With more and more countries appearing on DMR, the restrictive numbering format of the reflectors (4XXX) is causing talkgroups numbering conflicts for a growing number of countries which MCC code starts with 4.

Our statistics are also showing that less and less operators are using reflectors on BrandMeister DMR, and the demand for new reflectors is practically nonexistent.

For all the above reasons, the reflectors functionality will be retired no later than December 30th, 2020. After this date, Talkgroup 4000 will continue to provide the same auto-static disconnect function and Talkgroup 9 Timeslot 2 will behave just like any other one-digit talkgroup.

If you are using a dv4mini hotspot in reflector mode, please refer to this post to use MMDVM support.

USA 3108 Master Server removal

The USA 3108 Master Server will be removed on or around May 30th, 2020. The 3101, 3102, and 3103 masters have more than enough capacity to take the load.

Anyone with existing bridges connections (CC links, XLX, OpenBridge, etc.) or if you are a repeater owner with a cluster on 3108, please open a ticket on the BrandMeister Support Portal under the BMUSA section and we will get you moved to another master.

New Philippines Master Server 5151

The BM team is delighted to announce a new Master Server 5151 deployed in the Philippines, hosted on the island in the Eastern Telecoms datacenter. With the server physically located in the country, hams from the Philippines and nearby regions can enjoy lower latency, fewer hops, and thus better performance during QSOs.

The server address is at BM5151.hamradio.com.ph; Fixed IP address at 120.89.61.77. It should already be present in the BM Masters list for all hotspots that auto-update their master server list.

For more information on talkgroup lineup, local BM team, nets, etc. please refer to the wiki page.