EasyPal DRM…or Digital SSTV as many people seem to know it as

I was first shown EasyPal by a ham radio friend and was astonished at the quality and resolution of the pictures he was receiving…nothing like the lo-res stuff from MMSSTV and the like.

Once I got back to the shack, I downloaded the latest version and gave it a go.  Finding EasyPal transmissions was not as easy as analog SSTV as they sound like a jamming signal for the most part.  Anyway, I left it running whilst preparing a warm tasty beverage and was again astonished at the quality of the pictures.  But wait…the sender would embed a lo-res image in the waterfall display and then after a few seconds a beautiful hi-res picture appeared…impossible!

EasyPal Screen

EasyPal Screen

It turns out, after watching the process a bit more closely, that the sender transmits the header (and possibly the footer) of the data, then EasyPal hooks up an internet connection to allow the receiver to download the image.  That is NOT sending pictures by wireless guys…you might as well use e-mail or Skype or Facebook or whatever.

I did find a small group of English amateurs using EasyPal to send pictures totally over the air…but they weren’t massively better than analog SSTV.  So, EasyPal works…but I think it’s a bit of a cheat quite frankly.

Give it a go for yourself…the software is primarily the work of Erik VK4AES, from Australia.  The software is free to download but beware…as I write this, Erik’s site is being flagged by Google as ‘This site may harm your computer’.  There are other sources so choose wisely.

For me, MMSSTV simply cannot be beaten.