Greetings from AB5N
Our Field Day site on Lake Buchanan
I'm a ham just like you. I love the radios and enjoy the hobby
almost every day. I've been on the air for over 50 years. I'm retired now and have time to focus on what I enjoy most. That is getting the very best performance out of my gear.
Being a broadcast engineer, I have a ear for good clean audio.
Anything in the transmit chain that isn't right - will cause some
kind of distortion to the transmitted signal. Normally this is caused by gain distribution problems or non-linearity in a stage of the transmitter. With analog, these problems were usually pretty easy to find. With today's digital-based radios, linearity is even more critical. One thing is for sure - if you don't start with a clean signal of the correct level and characteristics, you cannot "fix" it later in the transmitter. That's why perfect audio from your microphone is so critical. It can make or break a transmitter's quality. Different modes require different audio characteristics too, so it's not easy to find the sweet-spot with microphone specifications. It takes time- and testing with a large group of real-world users. In the 16 years I've been doing these upgrades, I have a user-base of over 9500 hams now. I'm constantly taking feedback and optimizing my designs.
I get great pleasure from helping Amateurs. I treat every Ham I deal with personally - and place no limits on the amount of time and effort it takes to get them where they want to go. All of my best friends, jobs and even wife - came through Amateur radio - and I owe Amateur Radio a lot. I'm honored to help others enjoy this great hobby.