Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: Prev 1 2 [3]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: An exercise in futility  (Read 19168 times)
KE5JPP
Member

Posts: 0




Ignore
« Reply #30 on: July 18, 2011, 09:30:45 AM »


FM was only one of many disappointments, many other things that were being advertised were not functioning and they have all been discussed here in the past.

Stan K9IUQ


Maybe in another 7 years they will fix Noise Reduction which has never worked consistently since 2004.

Gene
Logged
WB6RQN
Member

Posts: 484




Ignore
« Reply #31 on: July 19, 2011, 09:15:26 AM »

I have never been a fan of "noise reduction". I have used NR on several different kinds of rigs but find the audio artifacts to be annoying, and not just on the Flex. NR doesn't actually increase S:N as I am still unable to separate a too-weak signal from the noise. I guess it is just that there is no such thing as a free lunch. S:N is what it is.

I find that properly setting the AGC threshold and the receiver gain to push down the noise floor to be a much better way to achieve noise reduction.

But, you know, I agree with you that it has taken too long to get PowerSDR to where it should be as a commercial product. And I also think that its inflexible architecture means that it has pretty much reached the end of its useful life. Sure they need to fix the stuff that isn't working, e.g. NR and FM, but I don't think they can use PowerSDR to reach the next level or even use it to extract the full capability from the Flex 5000. (I do think that PowerSDR, with FM working, is fine for the 1500 and the 3000 since they only have one signal path.)

But I also see Flex making steady progress. (Finally!)

I thought it was pretty funny that you guys were ragging on me about my "puffed up" posting. In that posting (if you had bothered to read it) I was actually saying that Flex needs to get in gear with the next generation of software because PowerSDR is just about as done as it is going to get. Sure they will add small things but it is going to take something like Deep Impact to extract the full capability of the Flex 5000.

Oh, and my other posting called on Flex to start making their development a bit more transparent so we can see they are actually making progress on Deep Impact. We know that their policy of making promises and then not meeting their own deadlines didn't work but their current policy of not saying anything doesn't work either. They need to do something in-between. I recommended that they give periodic reports of their progress without target dates so we can see something happening. The deafening silence is no use at all and is powerfully frustrating to boot.

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL
Logged
KE5JPP
Member

Posts: 0




Ignore
« Reply #32 on: July 19, 2011, 10:39:20 AM »

I have never been a fan of "noise reduction". I have used NR on several different kinds of rigs but find the audio artifacts to be annoying, and not just on the Flex. NR doesn't actually increase S:N as I am still unable to separate a too-weak signal from the noise. I guess it is just that there is no such thing as a free lunch. S:N is what it is.

I find that properly setting the AGC threshold and the receiver gain to push down the noise floor to be a much better way to achieve noise reduction.

But, you know, I agree with you that it has taken too long to get PowerSDR to where it should be as a commercial product. And I also think that its inflexible architecture means that it has pretty much reached the end of its useful life. Sure they need to fix the stuff that isn't working, e.g. NR and FM, but I don't think they can use PowerSDR to reach the next level or even use it to extract the full capability from the Flex 5000. (I do think that PowerSDR, with FM working, is fine for the 1500 and the 3000 since they only have one signal path.)

But I also see Flex making steady progress. (Finally!)

I thought it was pretty funny that you guys were ragging on me about my "puffed up" posting. In that posting (if you had bothered to read it) I was actually saying that Flex needs to get in gear with the next generation of software because PowerSDR is just about as done as it is going to get. Sure they will add small things but it is going to take something like Deep Impact to extract the full capability of the Flex 5000.

Oh, and my other posting called on Flex to start making their development a bit more transparent so we can see they are actually making progress on Deep Impact. We know that their policy of making promises and then not meeting their own deadlines didn't work but their current policy of not saying anything doesn't work either. They need to do something in-between. I recommended that they give periodic reports of their progress without target dates so we can see something happening. The deafening silence is no use at all and is powerfully frustrating to boot.

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL


A few direct sampling receivers get NR right.  As far as Flex, it is not even a function of PowerSDR.  The NR code is implemented in the DttSP library that PowerSDR uses.  In other programs that use DttSP like SDR-Shell, the NR code works great and I don't know why Flex just doesn't update the DttSP code they use with the changes to the DttSP code made in SDR-Shell and other variants.

Gene
Logged
G4PNX
Member

Posts: 16




Ignore
« Reply #33 on: July 19, 2011, 01:51:18 PM »

How is making periodic reports to the Flex community going to be any less meaningless than the current meaningless announcments situation?

What would FRS be reporting?

This:
RC4 within 6 weeks

Or maybe this from 6th Oct 2008:

The "new architecture" is currently in development as we speak but will take
several more months before it is ready for beta testing.  In fact, I have
just completed two days of meetings this week with the developers working on
the specific implementation plans.  This is a major effort because it is a
ground up rewrite of the entire system.  I ask everyone to be patient while
the developers do their magic.

I would suggest some form of Roadmap identifying the major milestones (and including those user enhancements to be incorporated at each step) but that requires a degree of trust and confidence in a company underserving of both.



G4PNX
Logged
WB6RQN
Member

Posts: 484




Ignore
« Reply #34 on: July 19, 2011, 03:03:55 PM »

How is making periodic reports to the Flex community going to be any less meaningless than the current meaningless announcments situation?

As far as I can tell, no one who actually works for Flex gives ANY sort of announcement about software futures now.

(BTW, Tim is now an official employee of Flex. Up until a week or so ago he was a contractor/volunteer. So if he says something now, it is really coming from Flex.)

Quote
What would FRS be reporting?

This:
RC4 within 6 weeks

Well, we are on RC5 now. I have seen 6 new versions over the last couple of months since I am in the closed beta group so I am seeing steady progress with clear improvements with each version. The problem is, if you are not in the closed beta group you cannot see those changes so you sit on the sidelines, frustrated, because you can see no progress. This is why I think that Flex needs to be a bit more open again with their development. Heck, if you have a piece of software that you think is good enough to be called a release-candidate, it is probably good enough to let everyone have a look. I think they throw the "release candidate" moniker around a bit too loosely but that is just me.

Quote
Or maybe this from 6th Oct 2008:

The "new architecture" is currently in development as we speak but will take
several more months before it is ready for beta testing.  In fact, I have
just completed two days of meetings this week with the developers working on
the specific implementation plans.  This is a major effort because it is a
ground up rewrite of the entire system.  I ask everyone to be patient while
the developers do their magic.

Ah, a "Bob McGwier" quote. No, one doesn't want to pay too much attention to those. Wink I have known Bob for many years (about 25) and he is a brilliant guy. His problem is that he is pulled in too many directions at once and his promises are often squashed by his responsibilities. So you take Bob's schedule with a grain of salt.

Two big things happened in the last two years that changed Flex's software development:

1. They had a huge development for the CDRX-3200 that sucked up all their development resources.

2. They switched from an open-software, contributed-effort development, to an internal, paid development staff.

Unfortunately #1 above kept us from seeing the improvements from #2. Also, the internal architecture of PowerSDR is so ... uh ... convoluted (trying to be nice here) that whenever someone tries to add something to it, it breaks something else. This is also hampering development. That is why I want to see Flex making a real public commitment to the new architecture.

Still, I am seeing more and better feature releases of PowerSDR. Yeah, it has been a LOOOONG time in coming but it appears that their new development effort is producing fruit.

Quote
I would suggest some form of Roadmap identifying the major milestones (and including those user enhancements to be incorporated at each step) but that requires a degree of trust and confidence in a company underserving of both.

G4PNX


I would agree with you (except for your comment about them being undeserving of trust and confidence). From a personal point of view, I have met them and I know that they are trying hard to get a good product out the door. It has been a real learning process for them too. They are finally getting it right and their new approach is finally producing results. Unfortunately their, "don't say anything about futures," policy is keeping most people from seeing that.

That having been said, I personally have no interest at all in their continued development effort on PowerSDR. IMHO it is a waste of resources that should be spent on their next generation software architecture, i.e. Deep Impact or whatever they are going to call it. But they sure are not giving ANY visibility into that development. <sigh>

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL
Logged
G4PNX
Member

Posts: 16




Ignore
« Reply #35 on: July 19, 2011, 03:28:00 PM »

And there was me thinking you had thrown off your Flex Apologist mantle.

The quote came from an email posted to the reflector by Gerald Youngblood in response to Stig Rasmussen LA4WAA. It did not come from Bob.

G4PNX
Logged
WB6RQN
Member

Posts: 484




Ignore
« Reply #36 on: July 19, 2011, 07:45:26 PM »

And there was me thinking you had thrown off your Flex Apologist mantle.

Contrary to popular belief, I don't wear a Flex Apologist mantle. I just call them as I see them.

Quote
The quote came from an email posted to the reflector by Gerald Youngblood in response to Stig Rasmussen LA4WAA. It did not come from Bob.

Huh. I was sure that came from Bob. I defer to your superior memory.

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL
Logged
WB6RQN
Member

Posts: 484




Ignore
« Reply #37 on: July 19, 2011, 08:00:30 PM »

And there was me thinking you had thrown off your Flex Apologist mantle.

G4PNX

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Same old same old.

No, not so much. They are doing things differently. I can point to a lot of things that have changed over the last year.

Quote
It has been a real learning process for them too.

On the job learning has cost Flexradio the trust and goodwill of many customers.. Customers that will never come back.

You may very well be right about that Stan. That is Flex's loss. Hopefully they will learn. We'll see.

Personally I think it is good that Flex is around. No one else is really making anything different. So even if they don't get it completely, they have proven the market for a different kind of radio. That is a good thing. Maybe it will lead to other companies trying to make an SDR. That would be a good thing too.

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL
Logged
G4PNX
Member

Posts: 16




Ignore
« Reply #38 on: July 19, 2011, 11:51:04 PM »

 No one else is really making anything different. So even if they don't get it completely, they have proven the market for a different kind of radio. That is a good thing. Maybe it will lead to other companies trying to make an SDR. That would be a good thing too.

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL

[/quote]

If Zenki is correct we may not have that much longer to wait. Keep your eyes on the Tokyo Ham Fair at the end of August seems to be sage advice.

G4PNX
Logged
KE5JPP
Member

Posts: 0




Ignore
« Reply #39 on: July 20, 2011, 05:13:27 AM »

Two new Flex Goodwill Ambassidors to watch out for:

Gary Plano, W2CEA - Co-Official Goodwill Ambassador 2011
Don Baughman, K7MX - Co-Official Goodwill Ambassador 2011

From:

http://www.flex-radio.com/Users.aspx?topic=flexies

Poor Brian, he didn't get the 2011 award like he did in 2010.  Wink  He certainly deserves it.

Gene
Logged
W4HIJ
Member

Posts: 367




Ignore
« Reply #40 on: July 22, 2011, 05:25:00 PM »

No one else is really making anything different. So even if they don't get it completely, they have proven the market for a different kind of radio. That is a good thing. Maybe it will lead to other companies trying to make an SDR. That would be a good thing too.

73 de Brian, WB6RQN/J79BPL


If Zenki is correct we may not have that much longer to wait. Keep your eyes on the Tokyo Ham Fair at the end of August seems to be sage advice.

G4PNX
[/quote]

What? Are the Japanese going to lay another under performing overpriced radio on us? Geez, I'm waiting with baited breath! NOT!!! The CEO's of the big three Japanese manufacturers must laugh all the way to the bank! They keep selling you inferior RX's and you guys lap em up. Then when they do make a decent radio and put an even more inflated price tag on it, you think it's the second coming! If you won't buy Flex, no problem, your loss, but at least buy Ten Tec or Elecraft and get a decent receiver for your money! And yes, I do keep talking about receivers because it's the best standard with which to judge a radio. Transmitter technology and performance has become pretty standard over the years.
73,
Michael, W4HIJ
« Last Edit: July 22, 2011, 05:27:14 PM by W4HIJ » Logged
ON4AMG
Member

Posts: 11




Ignore
« Reply #41 on: July 23, 2011, 07:09:35 AM »

... Transmitter technology and performance has become pretty standard over the years.
73,
Michael, W4HIJ

Michael, I am afraid I have to disagree with this!
All but a few manufacturers have massively failed in bringing forward transmitter technology improvements (which are available).
AFAIK only the latest Yaesu FTDX5000 and the ADT-200A have succeeded in this area.
Logged
M0HCN
Member

Posts: 473




Ignore
« Reply #42 on: July 23, 2011, 09:03:30 AM »

I might agree about the ADT-2000A, but IMHO the FTDX5000 takes a rather brute force approach and still does not get anywhere near what is possible (Hint guys, 75W of class A is not a selling point in my book, the shack is warm enough without that).

I have an experimental homebrew rig that manages better then -60db third order TX IMD ref one tone, (Equates to -66db ref PEP) at several hundred watts output with PA efficiency of ~50%, it is not that hard to do, and before I am done I hope to push the efficiency up quite a bit.

Transmitter performance these days in amateur service is by and large pathetic, at least compared to what is possible, or even the minimum that would be acceptable in commercial service.

Regards, Dan.
Logged
Pages: Prev 1 2 [3]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!