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Need technical support from FlexRadio? It's as simple as Creating a HelpDesk ticket.
Chris Tate, N6WM, Contesting Champion
You can, of course, contact us directly, but in most cases I will be forwarding the information to Chris for prioritization along with the other features/issues. Our goal is to be transparent and responsive to the needs of the contesting community as a whole.
We may add others to the list of folks helping in this way for other types of operation where the help would clearly bring benefit. Chris has graciously agreed to help us with this need as a volunteer and I want to thank Chris publicly for the work he's done in this area over the last year and that he will continue to do in a little more formalized fashion. Thanks, Chris!
This is clearly a welcome step, and will help Flex **** further in to the Contesting community. Thing is Steve, we're not all contesters; how will you ensure that us regular-Joes are also heard? Best Regards Paul M0CVX6
Exactly . . . I am not a contester either. How about getting the small stuff fixed like noise mitigation ,etc.6
I am also not a contester, but understand that "serious contest operators" are driving sales at the moment. Please do not forget us regular Joes, which is why I have been so vocal for GUI improvements. Indeed, I have suggested a similar 'guru' for GUI enhancements, as the 'contest' release (viz 1.6) did not bring any.
In the past, contesting improvements have just centred around getting contesting software to play nice with SSDR and nothing significant has trickled down.
I would imagine that regular Joes are watching this forum, as I did, before purchase and could be put off. They need to see what FRS has planned for the near/far future.
Carl K5HK MemberNo we like bells and whistles easy understood & used but not just for contesting.1
George - AB4FH MemberSteve,
This is good news and a wise direction. I look forward to future enhancements for contesters and DX'ers. How can we get the current list of feature requests from Chris so we can vote on our priorities?0
Jon_KF2E Member ✭✭I'll volunteer to being in charge of prioritizing eye-candy:)
Thanks. Like Guy (G4DWV)'s post above, I'm also anxiously awaiting the permanent fix for DAX Distortion. This sporadic, but nevertheless longstanding problem hampers a small cohort of mostly JT operators like myself who operate JT modes for hours on end. I believe that Tim has mentioned that this known problem has been identified as a "memory leak".
Please allot some time to correct this. thanks, 73, rich, K3VAT
Al_NN4ZZ Member ✭✭✭Hi Jon & Guy,
If you get the job of GUI Champion, how about using the idea VOTE counts to prioritize. Here are the TOP 10 from the list. I think that is at least a good starting point and the purpose of voting.
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
6700 - HW.................... V 18.104.22.168
SSDR / DAX / CAT...... V 22.214.171.124
CLICK to enlarge....
Bob N7ZO Member ✭✭Yes, please, please, fix the sporadic DAX distortion (both RX and TX). There are many threads here on this problem. I still run 1.5 because the problem was significantly worse in 1.6. Even with 1.5, I have to restart DAX once or twice a day to get rid of the distortion. None of my other audio devices have this problem. It would be more reliable for me to go back to my Signal Link box which I've used for many years without a problem, but using an outboard audio box is problematic with the 6000 series because it does not have fixed level line outputs.
I have been operating JT65 terrestrially for a while, but I just started operating EME and was embarrassed, once again, to get reports of distortion of my JT64B signal which they thought was over-driving. A restart of DAX and all was well - for a while.
This needs to be fixed before the team goes off on new features, contesting or otherwise.
73, Bob, N7ZO
It won't get fixed. They seem to now start work on contesting and the basics still go by the wayside . . . Chase that $$$$. I recently sold my 6500 and will probably not get my Maestro because of the issues I have been reading about here. The legacy radio's work, no rebooting, no DAX distortion, no CW distortion, no wifi issues. Did all these alpha testers not pick up on any of this. If I were an Alpha tester I would have seen these issues. Flex took in a whole bunch of $$$$ now scrambles to play catch up with the issues and seem to **** it off for the next big ****. It all should have been resolved before rolling it out
To the guy comparing the TS 990 to the flex . . . The 990 works as it should. I know I have had both. I am waiting to see what is upcoming in the future but I loved my 990. Also Don't give me BS about cutting edge technology. I don't think any body's ears are good enough to tell the difference in the radio's on Sherwood's list.
So lets here it from everyone . . . That is MY opinion1
No chance me getting anywhere near that post as I speak my mind too much. Anyway, I can think of at least one other person much better suited than I to that position. His only downside is that he is 100% CW, hi hi!0
Al_NN4ZZ Member ✭✭✭Hi Guy, Funny and thanks for the vote of confidence. You are right though, the GUI changes need to consider all modes and user needs. And I'm only focused on CW and DXing. And as others have mentioned there are a number of bug fixes that should take first priority anyway. The upside is that most of the GUI ideas have been on the books for a while, in some cases for up to 2 years. So it wouldn't be hard to do some surveys or polls to see how they rank with everyone. It would be nice to take the same approach for the GUI improvements as with the contesting improvements that Steve mentioned. In summary, ''Let the champion know where we are with changes....and communicate with the community." A champion is a good way to give a voice and focus even if just for a short time as needed for a specific goal. There are a number of folks here that could a good job as a champion including you. Regards, Al / NN4ZZ0
Andrew VK5CV Member ✭✭In my case a change from Win8 to Win10 has fixed my DAX distortion.
Andrew de VK5CV
@Steven - If you really are so down then you've done the right thing to switch.
After all it is only a hobby!
Where you could personally do much better is to stay factual and stop the disparaging remarks.
If a feature isn't there/is broken/works well or is late in your estimation, those are the facts as you see them.
When you claim that everything you don't like is because the company and the volunteer alpha team are doing bad or when you even seem to tread into the personal attacks implying they are bad people, well unless you know them personally those are not statements of fact. They are your unfounded emotive statements that as they are known to not be true, that you really owe them a public apology for.
And if a product isn't fun for you, perhaps some other product will be. Don't miss the chance to improve your enjoyment.
Personally I am a cup half- full person, and I know that the good things that are there are the direct result of a dedicated company and it's tireless alpha team volunteers. I have suggestions for improvements, but see those as opportunities to further apply the talent that has created a product eco structure that is open ended in potential. I hope they hear us when we applaud and ask for more, and I am ever so glad they don't tell us to pound dirt when they are treated so poorly.
All best and perhaps we can chat on the air?
Congratulations Chris N6WM - and if I can ever help just ask. @FRS - focus contacts is a great idea, and hoping there are a few more in the wings. 73 Steve K9ZW1
km9r.mike Member ✭✭Thanks Steve n5ac for the point of contact and congrats Chris n6wm. Just a thought and I do not think FRS has this but what about the possibility of internships @ FRS to help with the workload of developing / implementing these possible ideas or other ideas while FRS programmers focus on core SSDR / industry first issues ? UT has a computer science program and what a great opportunity for a student to get some real world experience. Just a thought and not a critique.0
Steve-N5AC Community Manager adminWe bring in interns frequently. We have one this summer that is working on BCD output from the radio. Generally we prefer to hire interns that already understand what we are trying to do and so this means licensed amateurs. Our intern this summer is Ashley, K9MWF, from Valparaiso University. We also regularly work with engineering students on projects that are of interest to us and make good student projects.1
km9r.mike Member ✭✭Awesome. I looked at a time out of curiosity on Flex's website to see if FRS was providing such an opportunity for aspiring students. Thanks Steve and congratulations to Ashley k9mwf.0
Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭I seriously hesitate to jump into this but I hear serious 'distortion' on this forum.
"....stay factual and stop the disparaging remarks". Those two are not mutually exclusive.
"If a feature isn't there/is broken/works well or is late in your estimation, those are the facts as you see them." I would say no, they are facts period. Opinions are as one sees them.
It seems to me what some folk are essentially saying is their opinion of what's happening is, "the wants of the few seem to consistently outweigh the wants of the many". For myself, I agree in that the priority of a broken existing feature should outweigh the new bright shiny feature. And that's premised on the decisions made by the vendor. They are just registering their dismay. Someone selling their 6000 does not alter FRS's net new sales so it doesn't show in the revenue numbers.
In a sense, someone registering disappointment or dismay or, perhaps, even anger is only the mirror image of someone registering their unbridled joy with their new toy.
So, Steve, while there is something to be said for "if you're unhappy, just quietly move on", it isn't really too different than, "if you are experiencing mind-numbing incredible waves of euphoria washing over you, please keep it to yourself". I believe both pieces of advice have merit in the case of over-the-top rhetoric. This as opposed to, "I gave up waiting and sold my Flex" or "Maestro/6000 is precisely what I was hoping for". Clean simple and gives FRS actionable information they may or may not want to drill deeper into.
"It's only a hobby". Apparently not to some.2
Burt Fisher Member ✭✭Show me anywhere in Part 97 where you see the word hobby
Varistor Member ✭✭Steve, This is a great move in the right direction. Contesters' feedback would be quite different from what you get from regular users. May I suggest the following for your consideration: 1) Actively promote Chris' role on non Flex sites, such as the CQ Contest, RTTY, and Top Band reflectors along with the N1MM and WriteLog groups. Ditto for some of the Russian sites. 2) Following the model of the 30-day money back program, actively recruit contesters to use your rigs for major contests. Give them a rig and let them run competitively in a major contest or two. You may want to start with members from the major contest clubs, such as YCCC, PVRC, Frankford, the Germans, etc. 3) Create your own Flex contesting community so that discussions stay focused. Further, it would be great to "label" users as contesters, just like you have elmers, champions, etc. There is a broader opportunity here to build a thriving community around SDRs and contesting. SDRs are yet to be mass adopted by contesters so there is a void in knowledge, experience, etc. Buld it, they will come, and possibly buy a Flex.2
@Walt - you're twisting what was a nice way of saying to Steven that while he has every right to convey what he sees and how he thinks about it, he has no right to rip into the people.
Say what you will, just remember the golden rule when it comes to the interpersonal stuff.
I am just wondering why with all this alpha testing and a ham on a DXpedition with 6 maestro's, why are all these issues popping up with wifi connectivity, distortion etc. No interpersonal stuff here. It should JUST WORK1
I does work. Most have no or little trouble with the Masestro. But as we have seen all routers are not the same even when they sport the same specs, for some, it has been a problem, for others, no problem at all. Flex ran all the of them at the show with out a problem.1
Absolutely Bill. I have had zero issues either wired or wifi but when I am operating from my shack, I use wired. When wireless, my Airport Express seems to work fine.
I'm sorry but people that say it should 'just work' have obviously never worked with low-latency wifi streaming (two things that are often mutually exclusive). I manage numerous large scale wifi deployments (of 50+ access points) and wireless congestion is a killer when trying to stream data. It can also highlight any bugs/incompatibilities between devices which may not necessarily be seen with other wifi chipsets due to the sheer volume of data. This sort of problem isn't necessarily the fault of either device but can sometimes be due to differing interpretations of the IEE802.11 standards.
I often have similar discussions regarding IP phones. In the analogue phone world, you would pick-up the phone and expect it to 'just work'. Modern IP phones can have issues whether that's network congestion or a software bug requiring a reboot but their flexibility means they have achieved wide scale adoption in spite of these occasional issues.
@Burt, As far as I am concerned, any activity that I take part in that I don't get directly paid for (i.e. in an amateur capacity) is a hobby.1
Please, please, please, folks. It is not all about contesting!
Yes, I'm sure that a good business aim would be for FRS to replace all K3s in the various contesting groups (if I was MD, that would be one aim..). But there are many individuals here who are not contesters but still have valid opinions and desires...and we have all invested in Flex too! So far I have seen nothing to reassure me that that my views will not be brushed aside, or even ignored, in the face of Contest groups lobbying Chris Tate.
Steve (N5AC), please reassure me that there will be some mechanism by which Flex will balance the two.
Paul M0CVX (and AC5NO)4
I think that there will be a long queue for that position.
Hi Al, Thanks for your vote too. The trouble with a 'Champion/Tsar', it is just like a politician having to have a public consultation. They have one then ignore the findings. The whole process would have to be open so one could see a given champion's achievements.
Far from having no bearing, it is my experience in these sorts of implementations that gives me in insight into the complexities of WiFi deployment, 50+ access points simply multiplies the likely problems by an order of magnitude and often requires creative solutions. It has also exposed me to a wide range of devices, some of which just will not connect to certain access points reliably.
The DHCP issue is I suspect due to the flex sending only a single DHCP discover broadcast packet when first booted (which is the Linux default). These packets can often be lost when limited bandwidth network bridges (access points/extenders) are between the flex and the DHCP server. Windows (and many other) clients send multiple DHCP discover requests with an increasing timeout (5,7, 15 and 32 seconds in Windows). If these 4 requests remain unfulfilled, Windows will then fall-back to using a link-local (169.254) address. I suspect that FRS didn't want to delay the boot of the 6x00 by up to an additional minute if a DHCP server isn't available? I for one would like to see the ability to set a static address which would mitigate this issue.
Using wired ethernet as much as possible I have never had the Flex be unable to obtain an address from my DHCP server and never have any lost packets in SSDR. I would also NEVER use a wireless extender in anything other than exceptional circumstances.
Maybe I am just lucky or maybe it is my 30 years spent designing and installing computer networks?
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