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Signal Strength and Readability: 5x5

Posted by Bruce Kahl on November 17, 2002

In Reply to: "Five by Five" & "Hawaii Five 0" posted by Steve on November 17, 2002

: I did think the 5 by 5 phrase was related to "your coming in loud and clear" but why 5 x 5?

: Why not 6x6 or 7x7?

: Is there something on an old radio where 5 was the strongest signal or something? And why two number?

: Do the two numbers relate to an "x" & "y" axis?

From a number of ham radio sites;

"The term five by five refers to the two measures of signal strength and readability; it is derived from older HAM radio instruments that were scaled from zero to 10 with 10 being the strongest. A five by five would be interpreted as 50 percent signal strength and easily readable, perhaps with some static or band clutter. A 10 by two would have a strong signal, but be broken and hard to understand, while a two by 10 would contain a weak signal, but be perfectly clear. A 10 by 10 would be very strong and crystal clear."