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Which Pactor Modem to buy?


Simple e-mail, Weather FAX, and NAVTEX on your boat

Whether underway, at the dock, or anchored out, stay in touch with friends, relatives, and fellow cruisers by having bring e-mail onboard.  Add a Pactor-II/III/IV radio modem to your existing marine SSB system and begin sending & receiving e-mail from your boat:

No more searching for a local Internet Cafe.* 
* No more hassling with unstable/intermittent WIFI connections.
* No more searching out a pay phone only to find it's not working.
* Add e-mail capability to your existing SSB radio system.

- Keep in touch with friends and family.
- Request weather charts & information on demand via SailMail or Winlink networks.
- Receive NAVTEX weather and marine hazard transmissions.
- Receive Weather FAX transmissions directly off-the-air.
- Order needed boat parts while at sea.
- Make/confirm slip reservations.
- Send & receive position reports while passage making.



Your e-mail is the Australasian agent for the SCS Pactor radio modems; the new P4dragon,  and the PTC-IIusb, PTC-IIPro & PTC-IIex. The PTC-IIIusb sells for $1599, the P4DR-7400 for $2099, and the P4DRDR-7800 for $2499. If you want to purchase a Pactor modem,  go to the Order Pactor Modems page, look over the product offering, and then give us a call at 07-4125-7700, or order over the Internet and pay by bank transfer or Paypal.

Pactor-IV (P4) - What is it and what does it do for me? One word--- s  p  e  e  d
SCS tells us that Pactor-4 technology is the absolute fastest a Pactor modem can go on the HF bands and still stay within the internationally mandated bandwidth. With totally new hardware and firmware designs, Pactor-4's  maximum throughput speed of 10,500 bps. is twice (2X) that of  Pactor-III. That means more free time for you to enjoy the sailing life style, and less drain on your ship's batteries.  Here's an actual on-the air throughput speed comparison between Pactor-III and Pactor-4 .


# Messages to Download TTL Characters P-III Throughput as measured by Airmail P-4 Throughout as measured by Airmail P-4 speed increase
29 19,967 4022 Bytes per Minute 8698 Bytes per Minute 2.163


 Click here for more detailed information about Pactor 4 and the P4dragon DR-7400 & DR-7800

Pactor-III (P-III) 
With nearly a decade of actual real-world operation behind it, Pactor-III is the "Gold Standard" for relatively speedy and reliable digital communications over HF SSB radio. Weather maps and GRIB files take two minutes or less to download with P-III, and depending on message length, e-mail messages can even be faster*.

Actual throughput may fluctuate as a result of propagation and atmospheric noise conditions.

Which Radio Modem to Buy - Pactor-4 vs Pactor-3
There are two  modem technologies from which to choose; Pactor III, and Pactor-4. From a Sailmail or Winlink viewpoint, the primary differences between these technologies are:
  1. The newly designed P4dragon DR-7400 & DR-7800 are the fastest modems in the Pactor family, boasting speeds 2x that of Pactor-III modem. The  P4dragon DR-7400 & DR-7800 are plug-compatible with the PTC-IIusb, which means that they use the same interconnecting cables to connect to the ship's SSB radio and computer.
  2. Like its predecessor, the PTC-IIusb, the PTC-IIIusb modem connects directly to a computer's USB port, and gives you computer-controlled frequency selection.

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