The bands have been a lot of fun for me lately and I've been enjoying the heck out of the 6500. I watched all day as A45XR Chris in Oman was being spotted across the world. Japan, EU etc. Unfortunately when I was watching it was early afternoon and he was on 80M CW and I had another 5 hours of daylight. I tuned into his freq on 3.506 to hear what I could hear, nada. Sometimes I can hear EU as early as 1800Z and I thought I might hear some one trying to work him. I got busy doing other things and walked into the shack about 01:00Z and the rig was still on 3.506 from earlier and low and behold he was in my passband.
He was peaking a good S6 but I have some lightning in the 800 mile range out in the ocean for competition.
Fortunately the 6500 has pretty good noise abatement so I was able to minimize the QRN by adjusting the AGC-T, WNB and filter bandwidth.
He was working mostly USA simplex at about 20 wpm. Knocking us off one by one. I got in the queue and gave a few calls. 80M ops tend to develop a calling rhythm where one calls then another then another kind of round robin style without just a dump it in free for all giving the DX a chance to respond between each mans stab at the ether. It makes for a nice friendly rational competition and increases dramatically the chances of getting through. About the third round I hit paydirt and we exchanged reports.
I was well into my darkness and he was coming up on his sunrise, perfect timing. Oman's about 8000 miles and I'm running a full size 80M vert and a lot of water between us, so it's a pretty good setup for working the middle east. Chris is also running a vert on 80M.