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Author Topic: Curious on your take.....  (Read 2217 times)
K2GWK
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« on: August 23, 2014, 10:08:20 AM »

I am a whacky old fart. I thrive on change and new things. I guess it is what keeps my juices flowing not only in life but also in Ham Radio. I am a rag chewer who occasionally operates CW because I am slower than a sleeping turtle. I can barely do 10 words a minute on a good day. I have an Elecraft K3 and P3 and during QSO's on SSB everyone can tell I am using a K3 even though I have a good microphone (Heil PR 781) and some equalization before the radio. I also have an FTDX-3000 and with the same audio front end get great audio reports. I don't think there is anything wrong with the K3 but I have read and many people have told me that the K3 has a distinctive sound. I don't know, I just turned 60 and my ears are not as good as they used to be.

Enough background. The truth of the matter is that I have some scratch burning a hole in my pocket and may want to ditch the K3 for something new. It doesn't happen often but I do have a couple of shekels to spend. I have done quite a bit of reading about SDR's and am pretty impressed with what I have read about the Anan 100/200D and Flex 6500/6700 radios. I have also operated a fellow club members FTDX-5000 and am pretty impressed with that also. I really don't mind loosing the front panel knobs with the SDR and I don't mind having them either with the Yaesu. I am itching for something new to play with and have the scratch. I just can't make up my mind on what. Do I go with the Anan/Flex SDR or the conventional FTDX-5000. I will make up my own mind but am very curious on what you guys have to say. Maybe you will happen on a point I had not considered.

One more thing......I am 60 going on 16........ Grin
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Guy
Lawn Guyland, New York

K2GWK Website
K7MH
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« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2014, 03:34:11 PM »

For my money and interests, the FTSX-5000 is the only choice.
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WE1X
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Posts: 358




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« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2014, 02:04:25 PM »

Having operated a number of rigs over the years I can honestly say the Flex 5000A with the second receiver was a joy. Selectivity was outstanding. The PowerSDR software great.  If you're into tinkering and enjoying the learning curve as I do, then the SDR route is the way to go. While I still enjoy traditional rigs SDR's are fun. I also found FlexRadio as a company excellent to deal with complemented by great customer support. The Flex user community is excellent as well. Will likely purchase a Flex 6500 in the next 6 to 12 months once SmartSDR gets a bit more feature rich and robust.
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K2GWK
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« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2014, 04:00:12 PM »

Having operated a number of rigs over the years I can honestly say the Flex 5000A with the second receiver was a joy. Selectivity was outstanding. The PowerSDR software great.  If you're into tinkering and enjoying the learning curve as I do, then the SDR route is the way to go. While I still enjoy traditional rigs SDR's are fun. I also found FlexRadio as a company excellent to deal with complemented by great customer support. The Flex user community is excellent as well. Will likely purchase a Flex 6500 in the next 6 to 12 months once SmartSDR gets a bit more feature rich and robust.

Thank you for the honest and helpful reply. I am not looking for the buy the this or that reply. I really appreciate your reply because it made me think about how much I enjoy tinkering with things. That is something I had not considered. I also appreciate the insight in to Flex as a company. I am very hesitant in dealing with Apache because they are on the other side of the world in India with no dealers here in the US. I have heard some very good things about Apache mind you, but I am just a little nervous about them.
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Guy
Lawn Guyland, New York

K2GWK Website
M6GOM
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« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2014, 01:46:59 AM »

I've just got my first proper SDR radio, a Flex 6500. SmartSDR is what I'd call "BETA 2" as in it works very well but some features are missing and others could do with some tweaking with how they're implemented. I would say that if you go down this route I would change the hard drive in your computer to a SSD one. Being able to boot up into Windows and start SmartSDR within 30 seconds and be up and running in the same time as a TS990 or Icom 7600/7700/7800 takes to fire up is far better than taking a few minutes twiddling your thumbs waiting 5 minutes for a PC with a mechanical HDD to start and maybe missing a short opening.

As for PC specs, the lowest I've tried it on is a Thinkpad T400 circa 2009 with a 2.26GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, 3GB of RAM and onboard Intel graphics and could run four panadapters just fine. I did observe that connecting with a LAN cable to the router the Flex was connected to resulted in better performance than doing it over wifi with a relatively weak signal. With the weak signal wifi although the audio was constant the panadapter would occassionally stutter and tuning seemed a bit laggy even running just one. It would seem from my testing that the performance of the PC itself isn't really that much of an issue unlike the Flex 3000/5000 and takes a back seat to network performance.
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W8GP
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« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2014, 06:01:03 AM »

Since you obviously have the scratch (you did mention that?) go for something completely different, AKA Flex.
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K2GWK
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« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2014, 11:43:16 AM »

Since you obviously have the scratch (you did mention that?) go for something completely different, AKA Flex.

Yea, it is not often I get a good amount of cash to spend on myself. I just sold my entire home brewery. I now find Ham Radio a much more relaxing hobby and I have enough kegged and bottled homebrew to last me a good long while. Usually any found or extra cash gets spent elsewhere. Now that I have it, it is really burning a hole in my pocket. I can't help but feeling if I don't spend it soon, it will get spent on something else like it has so many times before. I have no business to complain though, I have a nice shack due to the generosity of my family through anniversary, birthday and Christmas presents etc. and a little bit of horse trading.
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Guy
Lawn Guyland, New York

K2GWK Website
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