Fldigi Users Manual  4.1.17

Fldigi can operate on the following Contestia modes without special setup by the operator:

Mode Symbole Rate (Baud) Typing speed (WPM) Bandwidth (Hz)
Contestia 4-250 62.5 ~ 40 250
Contestia 8-250 31.25 ~ 30 250
Contestia 4-500 125 ~ 78 500
Contestia 8-500 62.5 ~ 60 500
Contestia 16-500 31.25 ~ 30 500
Contestia 8-1000 125 ~ 117 1000
Contestia 16-1000 62.5 ~ 78 1000
Contestia 32-1000 31.25 ~ 48 1000

Unusual combinations of symbol rate and bandwidth can be selected using the Contestia Configuration tab.

Contestia is a digital mode directly derived from Olivia that is not quite as robust - but more of a compromise between speed and performance. It was developed by Nick Fedoseev, UT2UZ, in 2005. It sounds almost identical to Olivia, can be configured in as many ways, but has essentially twice the speed.

Contestia has 40 formats just like Olivia - some of which are considered standard and they all have different characteristics. The formats vary in bandwidth (125,250,500,1000, and 2000hz) and number of tones used (2,4,8,16,32,64,128, or 256). The standard Contestia formats (bandwidth/tones) are 125/4, 250/8, 500/16, 1000/32, and 2000/64. The most commonly used formats right now seem to be 250/8, 500/16, and 1000/32.

Contestia performs very well under weak signal conditions. It handles QRM, QRN, and QSB very well also. It decodes below the noise level but Olivia still outperforms it in this area by about 1.5 - 3db depending on configuration.

It is twice as fast as Olivia per configuration. It is an excellent weak signal, ragchew, QRP, and DX digital mode. When ragchewing under fair or better conditions it can be more preferable to many hams than Olivia because of the faster speed. For contests it might also be a good mode IF the even faster configurations such as 1000/8 or 500/4 are used.

Contestia get it's increased speed by using a smaller symbol block size (32) than Olivia (64) and by a using 6bit decimal character set rather than 7bit ASCII set that Olivia does. Therefore, it has a reduced character set and does not print out in both upper and lower case (like RTTY). Some traffic nets might not want to use this mode because it does not support upper and lower case characters and extended characters found in many documents and messages. For normal digital chats and ham communications that does not pose any problem.

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