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Reviews Categories | Ham Software - Other than logging | Icom RS-BA1 Help


Reviews Summary for Icom RS-BA1
Icom RS-BA1 Reviews: 31 Average rating: 2.8/5 MSRP: $100
Description: remote control software for newer Icom radios.
Product is in production.
More info: http://icomamerica.com/en/products/amateur/hf/rsba1/default.aspx
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VA2DV Rating: 4/5 Aug 14, 2013 07:34 Send this review to a friend
Hard to setup , then fine.  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Like the previous reviewer said , you must be able to fiddle with settings and networking to get this
thing up and running.I spent 2 night setting it up
with an old Celeron Laptop as the server and my mini
netbook as the client.It now works great both within my home network and from the internet.Both laptops are running wireless so I do have a high latency but everything is still usable.So I would not say it's plug and play but once running , it's like having the rig in front of me anywhere in the world.The user interface is even better than the real faceplate of the radio because you have access to everything without having to push and hold a series of buttons.Well done but kind of pricey.
 
WB0KZB Rating: 5/5 Aug 13, 2013 11:25 Send this review to a friend
Why this good product gets a bad review  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Summary:
The software gets bad reviews, but really works well, provided it is properly setup on compatible computer networks. The most common problem encountered is probably because of the network router. If extreme care is taken to install the software properly, the remote system should work admirably.

Detail:
Before buying the software, check your network router for “Port Forwarding”. Do not confuse this capability with port filtering, port triggering, or port anything else. “Port Forwarding” is the key to making the software function. If you don’t understand networking, or don’t have the time to setup the network properly, either hire someone who does know how to do it for you or do NOT purchase this software. My installation needed a new router at a cost of about $80. The one that was in my home network was a common one, but it was a cheap one. Most of the routers made for the lower price-points do NOT offer port forwarding. As I understand it, if you have a “gaming” system your router will probably work. I would strongly advise that you check it anyway. The instructions that Icom provides for the router setup are generic and meant for use with the router documentation. The information supplied by Icom is NOT enough to setup your router unless you are very knowledgeable in router operations: if you don’t have the documentation for your router, get it.

Once the router is setup, setup the firewall. If you are using the Windows Firewall that is supplied with the Microsoft Windows operating system, the instructions provided with the software are good enough for someone with a working knowledge of firewalls. If you don’t understand firewalls and network security, ask the person that setup your router to do it for you.

The setup network can be tested before the software is purchased, but testing requires a detailed knowledge of TCP/IP networking and another network. I used a laptop at a coffee shop and Telnet. Search the internet for other ways to send two-way traffic over the specified ports. Once complete to your satisfaction, your risk of wasting $100 is greatly reduced.

Once you have the software, I highly recommend that you PRINT the documentation. I have found that the printed version is easier to follow simply because you can check off the steps as they are done. This is not a simple install, but the documentation is good. I printed out a total of 84 color pages:

1. 28 pages for the “Quick Reference Guide” found online at http://www.icomamerica.com/en/products/amateur/hf/rsba1/RS_BA1QuickGuide.pdf
2. 50 pages for the instruction manual found on the CD
3. 6 pages for the driver installation guide found on the CD (note that the document for Windows 8 is different than the document for the other Windows versions)

There are three printed documents that come with the software they are numbered and will reference the other documents. Follow the instructions to the letter, including the verification steps. It took me a couple of hours to set up the base and the remote, but it worked for me.

Review:
I was torn between giving the RS-BA1 a 4 or a 5. I rounded up and give it a 5 because it does exactly what Icom says it will do. I connected my Icom 7410 to a Dell desktop computer via the USB port. If you have more than one radio, you might need to use the CT-17. I have a home-brewed CT-17 that also worked with this software. The biggest limitation for me is that there is no way to connect a CW key. Other drawbacks are that the window is a fixed size, you have to have the software running on the base (host) computer, and the radio must be turned on. I recommend that you put the remote utility in the Windows Startup folder and set the computer to reboot after power failure (usually found in the computer’s BIOS settings). This will save you some heartburn if you are on vacation and the home QTH suffers a power outage. On the better than expected side of the ledger, the memory functions of the software are actually better that the IC-7410 it’s connected to.

Overall, the installation is complex but reasonably well documented, albeit you have to print the documentation. While the installation is complex, it’s not difficult if you know your way around a computer network. Time will tell if it’s worth the $100, but if it continues to work and I can take my station with me on the road – its money and time well spent.

Hope this helps.
73,
Jim
 
IZ1TMF Rating: 0/5 Jun 3, 2013 13:16 Send this review to a friend
Really BAD SOFTWARE  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This is a REALLY BAD SOFTWARE, not work!

N°1 When you use the software with the Icom 9100 and you use the remote with internet, the software change some setup on the radio, and when you want use only the radio (with all the remote disconnected and OFF ) you have lost the audio for the microphone, and if you want again, you must go inside the setup of the radio and change on the setup ACC/USB to MIC, otherwise the radio will be without micro input also you perform a master reset to clean all the setup, and this IS NOT WRITTEN ON THE USER MANUAL !!!

N°2 Really not easy to setup, try to use Kenwood free programs and judge !

N°3 Crash sometime with XP Pro and remain ON TX !!!

N°4 If you use on the radio the CI-V interface to talk with some amplifier or evolute antenna control, the remote not work also if you have different address and you must unplug the CI-V if you use the USB Port for the remote server.

N°5 The radio MUST TO BE ON FOREVER if you intend use the remote !!!
Unbelievable !! You can not turn OFF or put in StBy the radio! like KENWOOD software do. And the radio (9100)take 3A only in receive mode ! A wast of energy and heat for the radio.

N°6 You can not control all the radio feature but only a part of it! Try to use Kenwood and enjoy all the feature (REALLY ALL) and more of the radio by remote.

N°7 The audio codec algorithm need a lot of bandwith on internet and the others codec in the list are really hungy of bandwith, only a little bit changes, but and drastic changes on audio quality. (Again, try Kenwood program, really efficient respect the bandwith). With the RS-BA1 if you have more than 500ms of delay on internet, forget to use the remote interface and forget to listen some audio.


There are others problems discovered on the use, but ICOM not listen ours suggestions and like all the "software writers" in the world, they said "this is happens only to you..)

Now folks,
if you are happy to pay more than $100 dollars for useless programs, welcome! Or try to compare the feature with KENWOOD offer.
A REALLY fantastic remote control on internet.
And really easy to setup!

Try to use Kenwood remote programs or other free programs of third parts for ICOM and you can judge if this is not true.

73 Marco
 
WU6W Rating: 3/5 May 17, 2013 21:23 Send this review to a friend
Works - But !!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Over complicated setup.
Missing features for the IC-746Pro like the Antenna Tuner !!! I mean the Antenna Tuner ??? Give me a break.
If HRD had an Audio Codec it would totally smoke this software.
 
KF6WTC Rating: 4/5 May 10, 2013 13:46 Send this review to a friend
Instructions sucks  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Well I bought this software yesterday and it took me all day to figure what was happening. Like most people here I could log on locally, but not remotely. The problem was this. First when connecting to the server in the Remote Utility program I was never getting a "connected" message. It just kept saying "connecting" Truth of the matter is as long as you don't get a bad password error you are connected. After that go to the radio list to make your connection. You will have to go into the settings first and SET YOUR OWN VIRTUAL COM PORT. My thinking was when making the connection to the server that the virtual com port would be program selected. It's not. Last check the memory address in the Radio Control program to make sure it's the same. Mine by default was not. I think it defaults to 7Ch when my radio was defaulted at 7Ah. It's working great now. The Interface is kinda crappy, but it does what it needs to.
 
PA0RCL Rating: 3/5 Feb 23, 2013 07:38 Send this review to a friend
Far too expensive  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have some experience with remotely controlled transceivers, for instance my Kenwood TS-480. The Kenwood software required for the server and client is made available by Kenwood free of charge and it works fine.

Whereas making my TS-480 remotely controlled took me less than a half hour, Icom made me spend two long evenings finding out how their RS-BA1 was supposed to work with my IC-7200, my server PC and a remote netbook. I finally managed to get it working, it is really not difficult once you know how to, but this product is not up to what I had expected from Icom.

For the 100 bucks Icom charges you one could at least expect better and less ambiguous instructions.

As I see it Icom has two possibilities for improvement:

1) come up with a better handbook (at least for those hams who do read manuals)

2) make this software freeware

 
K7LZR Rating: 5/5 Jan 12, 2013 21:08 Send this review to a friend
Does as intended.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought this to use with an IC-7200. I've used it successfully from my netbook in motel rooms over the internet and also from around home on the local network.

My computers use Windows XP Pro and I have had no troubles with this whatsoever except for a bit of low TX audio which was easy to correct.

I am able to access nearly all of the IC-7200 functions from remote, and the meters even work well with little latency.

I honestly don't understand why people seem to have so many problems with this. I really didn't fuss too much to get it working.

It really can do what it says, and I think that those who cuss it and give it such bad reviews might better spend their time by giving Icom some constructive feedback instead so that improvements might be made.
 
K5UY Rating: 1/5 Dec 5, 2012 21:05 Send this review to a friend
Crap  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I thought I’d purchase the Icom interface software (RS-BA1) just for grins as so many have reported it was real junk and infinitely over complicated and poorly designed. Well, they are wrong; it’s closer to an Icom Scam. It’s really not complicated; it’s just poorly designed with no intention of ever working with other windows OS installments. However, the revenue brought in by this scam must be extremely profitable at 100 bucks a pop.
It’s missing so many necessities, it’s almost laughable. Fellow Hams, stay away from this crappie software effort. I got it to work on my window 7 box but you can forget windows 8, the USB drivers/ Audio drivers will not install properly in that environment. Even on windows 7 it’s far from robust, it’s a resource piglet and has more conflicts than Ten Tech. Whoever did a review and said it was ROBUST is either dishonest or didn’t have a clue what he/she was doing much less what he/she should have expected, probably a no-coder or possibly someone from Icom. Beware of RS-BA1, no big deal with me, I bought it to verify what had been reported, so real light could be placed on rumors. If you’re bored, buy it, it will give you hours of experience, after all, it’s just 100 bucks.
By the way, I have some background with the PC world; we will just leave it at that. 73’s
 
SA7ATK Rating: 2/5 Nov 14, 2012 06:20 Send this review to a friend
Much too Complex  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Recently I did my second attempt with the ICOM RS-BA1. The first attempt I did more than one year ago and at that time I didn’t succeed even spending a quite big amount of time studying the 4 manuals, setting up Drivers and the Software. At that time I blamed me for not having sufficient knowledge in Software installation. The result was, that I sold off the RS-BA1 package without having any success running the program. So this time I decided that it should be different! Same amount of time spend in studying the manuals, setting up Drivers and Software. The result was exactly the same like a year ago. I am frustrated and (again) I have spent 80€ for nothing……………. The positive thing is, I found HamRadio Deluxe. After just 1 ( ONE ) hour I was able to control my IC-7200 without any problems. I am not impressed about ICOM RS-BA1.
 
VK2HL Rating: 4/5 Sep 16, 2012 18:48 Send this review to a friend
Robust remote software  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Works great once you get it going. Very resilient to packet loss, have used it via a 3G phone connection and it worked fine. Installation could be easier, but surprised that self described IT pros have had problems.. it's not THAT hard.
Only caveat is to make absolutely sure you USB connection is not affected by RF from your antenna on any band you plan to use. It can lock up if that is the case and possibly leave the TX on. I have noticed that there is a PTT time-out in the IC7600 when the transmitter is keyed from a CAT command, but this is not the case with all the radios the software supports. I have used my IC7200 and IC7600 with it and it works fine. Nice touch on the 7600 is being able to send CW via the keyboard on the PC.
 
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