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Author Topic: 10 features I'd like to see on a New Kenwood HF Rig  (Read 4237 times)
WA4D
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« on: April 19, 2012, 09:08:24 AM »


 Almost all HF rigs today, are design descendants or variations on the KWM-2. The classic xcvr of all time.  The ergonomics and layout still work. Kenwood should stay with it.  Features I 'd like to see.
 
1)  IP Connectivity. Built in WI-FI and ethernet.
 
2)  Rig can be controlled with any popular tablet or mobile device.
 
3) Internal recorder that will allow recording of spectrum or  Audio and then output it to a Cloud service.
 
4) NO Spectrum analyzer. It costs too much to incorporate. Spend the money elsewhere to meet the marketing price point.
 
5) A Kenwood Web site listing  990's -- When and where they are on the air. (Operator may opt in or out)
 
6) Automatic Logging of radio operations…..Data stream fed to cloud.   (Public or private access)
 
7) Oh Yes, An xmitter and receiver.( Just build a contemporary radio with state of the art design.) The radio section of the rig is only part of the whole.
 
Cool One button feed to Skype without a PC
 
9) Meter Option models (Analog or Graphic display)
 
10) 100 watts only. Make the rig smaller.


 
.
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N6AJR
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« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2012, 10:53:36 AM »

well To meet what you are saying you need, buy an Orion, and a acer tablet and a blue tooth, and a usb wireless adapter.  I am trying to figure out if you want a nice radio, a cell phone, a computer, or what.  I prefer my radios with mostly radio functions. if I need  wireless function I will hook it to one of my computers.. I'm just sayin.....
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WA4D
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« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2012, 12:29:31 PM »

Valid point. there are lots of ways to come at it. And I appreciate the preference for a radio is a radio is a radio.

Cheers from LA
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AG6WT
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« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2012, 09:58:37 PM »

A good radio can work and be useful for decades. Web and computer technologies are continually evolving. Add all those nice features to the radio and you can be assured most, if not all, of them will be useless within 5 years.

As N6AJR said, just build the radio with a good interface to the computer. You can change the computer or its software as needed without having to sacrifice your radio.
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WA4D
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« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2012, 07:10:01 AM »

This is a "teachable moment".  At least for me.

N6AJR and KJ6AMF both saw through the fog that I did not. They're right. Their insights made me pause. The wish list of features I offered are soft and will fade if not outright disappear in time. Moreover, the foundation of a great HF rig should be the RF section and it's functionality. 

Having just returned from the NAB Digital Media show just hours before submitting this list, I was still intoxicated with the "IP everywhere" and feverish Social media mania that contributed to my dysfunction.

So thanks for the nudge gents.  My mind is clear and free of clutter in thinking about this subject.  Looking forward to Kenwood's new release.

Mike/ WA4D.Net

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ZENKI
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« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2012, 01:22:35 PM »

To your list I would add:

A Transmitter with  excellent TX IMD performance that has no ALC overshoot issues and that produces the best possible TX IMD performance.

A radio that does not run on 13.8 volts is design progress that delivers numerous advantages.

A 200 watt radio is a must for those who dont want to run a amplifier. Its enough power when used with a decent that does not require you to turn on a heat generating and noisy amplifier.

If this radio does have a second receiver, lets hope the second receiver is a true direct sampling receiver that can work in 3 modes. 1. A second  direct sampling receiver, 2. A Panadapter  3. A transmitter spectrum analyzer.
Hams have long needed a way to assess the quality of their transmitter signals. Oscilloscopes and hams friends are really the worst ways of assessing the quality of ones signal.

19 Inch rack dimensions.  It would be great to mount your complete remote shack in a 19inch server cabinet. This is already the standard for networking equipment. It would also making securing the equipment against theft a
lot easier. I  know of a  2 cases where thieves broke into RF installations  and took everything and left  everything in the racks alone, even though the racks were  full of valuable test equipment!   I guess it was just too hard
unscrewing it.

A detachable front panel for remote operation like the TS480. Having to buy a dummy  expensive  non transmitting  box like Elecrafts K3-0 remote solution is a ridiculous waste of money. The TS480S is the best remote rig available with its remote panel. There is no reason why even a very large base radio could not have a proper independent remote panel secured with a few nice Hex bolts.

What would also  be nice is bumper feet like that on the Agilent test equipment  especially their spectrum analyzers. A snap protective cover lid if the radio has a bandscope would also be a nice feature. I have always wished that  someone in the ham industry would copy the way Agilent packages their equipment.

At least this new Kenwood radio release will bring  excitement to Dayton. I thought 2012 was going to be a boring year for ham equipment releases. Kenwood and Hilberlings new  radios will  makes this year in ham radio very exciting.
There is hope for better things, I was just about to buy another  new expensive watch, I think I will delay that purchase!



 Almost all HF rigs today, are design descendants or variations on the KWM-2. The classic xcvr of all time.  The ergonomics and layout still work. Kenwood should stay with it.  Features I 'd like to see.
 
1)  IP Connectivity. Built in WI-FI and ethernet.
 
2)  Rig can be controlled with any popular tablet or mobile device.
 
3) Internal recorder that will allow recording of spectrum or  Audio and then output it to a Cloud service.
 
4) NO Spectrum analyzer. It costs too much to incorporate. Spend the money elsewhere to meet the marketing price point.
 
5) A Kenwood Web site listing  990's -- When and where they are on the air. (Operator may opt in or out)
 
6) Automatic Logging of radio operations…..Data stream fed to cloud.   (Public or private access)
 
7) Oh Yes, An xmitter and receiver.( Just build a contemporary radio with state of the art design.) The radio section of the rig is only part of the whole.
 
Cool One button feed to Skype without a PC
 
9) Meter Option models (Analog or Graphic display)
 
10) 100 watts only. Make the rig smaller.


 
.

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STAYVERTICAL
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Posts: 854




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« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2012, 01:19:31 AM »

I will burn incense to the gods of radio when radios come routinely with an integrated Ethernet connection.

TCP/IP and ethernet would finally exorcise the serial/USB problems which have beset radio control for too long.
It is not difficult to then make your radio part of the network, and at 100mb/s or Gigabit speeds is fast enough for
real time audio on transmit and receive, as well as streams for radio control and status.

I would imagine a scenario where manufacturers could offer two models, one with a standard front panel and controls, and a second
model with a blank front panel which is intended for computer control only.
Options could even include a clip on front panel over the base "blank" model.

This would enable a slow transition to Flexradio type of radios, where the performance could be enhanced by software/DSP-hardware.
The other advantage of TCP/IP and Ethernet is that it is not going to be redundant any time soon.
Network programming using TCP/IP is a well established, standardized, discipline used in most internet/network devices in existence.

The rig would also now be able to be housed wherever convenient, even at the base of the antenna, since a Wifi or ethernet connection
is all that is necessary apart from power.
The integrated ATU would then effectively be a remote ATU and coax cable would only be short or not required at all.
So hams may finally be able to leave the ham shack and operate wherever their laptop is allowed by the xyl.

Once the radio hardware becomes just some circuit boards within a blank box, the cost of manufacture should also drop, since the
assembly will become considerably less complex and do away with meters, controls, displays and rotary encoders.

Just a thought.

73s




 
« Last Edit: April 25, 2012, 01:50:41 AM by STAYVERTICAL » Logged
N6AJR
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« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2012, 11:46:26 AM »

I have had several SDR radios including a Pegasus and a flex 1500.  I guess my Orion also qualifies as a SDR rig, as you can update the  radio with software, adding features and such.  The flex  was OK and worked well but I did not use it much.   The Pegasus was more used, and I think that was because of the 100 watt output. They both were quite controlable by the computer interface, both have been sold or traded.  I use the Orion as my Day to Day rig and for DX and contesting. It is the best radio I have ever owned, by far.  The problem for serial to usb  ports , I have found the Keyspan HS 19 dongle works consistently best, and  I enjoy the  computerized setup, like in contestion where my radio, amp and steppir all follow the logging program .  this makes making many contacts in a short time easy.  But I still prefer the radios with knobs  to change stuff on them.
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AD6KA
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« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2012, 06:12:39 PM »

Feature I'd Like To See:
Buttons that don't have FOUR functions
on them depending on how long you hold them in!
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ZENKI
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Posts: 906




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« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2012, 02:48:19 AM »

That sounds like you hate the K3 as well?

This is my pet hate on the K3, the worst combination is the XMIT and the tune control all which can have different power settings. Its very easy to blow things up and do stupid things when you have this kind of ridiculous button arrangement. Buttons and knobs are cheap,  what are companies being so tight with a few plastic knobs and buttons.


Feature I'd Like To See:
Buttons that don't have FOUR functions
on them depending on how long you hold them in!
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K8AXW
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Posts: 3651




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« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2012, 09:05:55 AM »

How about a Kenwood rig that has an operating manual that can be understood???

I have two pieces of Kenwood gear that cannot be programmed by reading the damn operating manual! 

Two classes of people that should NOT write operating manuals:  Foreigners and engineers.  But then as Mark Twain said, "I repeat myself!"
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AF3Y
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Posts: 3695




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« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2012, 12:53:39 AM »

A Scope?
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AA4PB
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Posts: 12672




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« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2012, 06:45:38 AM »

The problem with "buttons" is that they take up front panel space and drive the overall size of the radio. In general, people seem to want more features and smaller size. The only way to do that is menus.

I notice that many of the mfgs that tout "upgradeable firmware" never release any firmware upgrades  Cry
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N4UM
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Posts: 450




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« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2012, 12:11:04 PM »

I'd like one that works with K-cups to make coffee.
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