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Re: Ham modem
"And, I hope folks haven't been deluded into thinking that sat phones are a good substitute for Pactor modems."
Given the way sitcom prices (equipment and airtime) have kept coming down, versus the cost of Pactor modems and the additional issues of the complete marine SSB installation (radio, antenna tuner, antenna, counterpoise, operator training)...
There is something to be said in favor of "Dude, get the phone."
Not that they are the same, but I'd suggest the installation, learning curve, and deployment are all way shorter for the satphone, and for many users and purposes, it will be "enough".
Pactor is blessed or cursed by having only a small potential market, no matter how they measure it, and I expect that will mean their pricing will always be niche (high) pricing. Which in turn keeps their market even smaller, doesn't it?