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Does anyone know if the RapidM internal cards are capable to be used in the 6600 or 6400 radios?

Glenn DeppGlenn Depp Member
edited May 10 in Third-Party Software
Flex 6600 and RapidM

Completed · Last Updated


  • Kg5dwxKg5dwx Member ✭✭
    edited April 2018
    I would love to use a TC4 in M110a mode in my 6500! I have one not being used well.
  • David SalomonDavid Salomon Member ✭✭
    edited April 3
    Glenn - thanks for this post.  I had never heard of RapidM until I read your post, so I checked it out.  It would be great if one of these cards could be used in the 6400/6600 radios.  Do you have any idea what they cost?  Is the military their main market (i.e. big $$)?  I see on their website that one of their boards is made specifically for the Icom IC-F8101 ALE radio.  Do you know if there are other HF/VHF/UHF radios that these radios work in?

    73 - David, AG4F
  • Glenn DeppGlenn Depp Member
    edited May 10
    The main use would be for MARS use and perhaps maybe Govt, however, they have dedicated radios for this.  The embedded card goes for I believe $800ish, can't remember exactly.  I remember hearing there was thought about there being a slot for one of these in there but have not read anything about it so guess either it has not happened yet or won't be an option.  If they did add this option that would make their sales increase for the MARS community as it would make the radio a hardware radio with hardware modem/ALE which is desired.  We shall see I suppose. If they did add this option it would make it compete with a few other radios I have been considering.  Not a fan of the additional cost for unlocking for MARS use, that is a drag.
  • Steve K9ZWSteve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited April 2018
    Thank you for bringing the cards to attention - I want aware of them. Hadn’t heard of any mention prior. The provisioning for MARS is more than just “unlocking” as described. Adds the filtering to do it correctly. So there is physical stuff as well as any unlocking. Also a big thank you to all the hams who do regular MARS operations! 73 Steve K9ZW
  • David SalomonDavid Salomon Member ✭✭
    edited April 2018
    MARS use is why I as was asking.  I already use my 6600M for MARS.  Steve is correct, the radio needs different filters (as well as a software unlock) in order to cover all of 2-30.  I had mine done before it was shipped to me.  Unlike some other radios that have reduced power outside the ham bands, or that reduce power even inside the ham bands after a MARS mod, the 6600M performs at full output across the board.

    I don't know that it would add a lot of demand from potential MARS users, as the current software used for MARS ops handles ALE and M110A pretty well.  I read (I don't recall where) that hardware ALE produces better results (i.e. better / more decoding) than software.  I thought that it would be interesting to see if that was really the case.  However, for around $800, it's not an experiment that I would try unless I knew it would produce significantly better results.  The 6600M works well for digital use as is.  Unlike many other radios, the transmit filter bandwidth can be controlled, which allows the user to set it exactly as needed for a given digital mode.  The way I operate, I use one slice for voice and another for digital, set to the same frequency.  That allows me to set parameters differently for voice vs digital operation, which is a big plus.  For example, I typically set the AGC to medium and the AGT-T value to around 25-ish for voice.  For digital, I keep the AGC at fast and the AGC-T level higher.  I send the digital slice stream to the software via DAX, and keep the volume on the radio muted.

    Prior to getting my 6600, I did something similar, but had to use two radios to accomplish it.  I used an SDR for digital receive, allowing me to tailor that signal differently than another rig used for transmit and voice receive.  I like the Flex setup much better even if for no other reason than not having separate software running for the SDR radio.

    I'd also be curious to see how one of the RapidM external modems performs vs software.  However, again, at the price point you mentioned, it's not an experiment I'm willing to fund.

    73 - David, AG4F
  • Tim - W4TMETim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited September 10
    They cannot be used in the FLEX-6000s radios
  • Travis BestTravis Best Member ✭✭
    edited December 2018
    I use a Rapid-M RM2 External modem and it works well with my Flex 6700 and 6600
  • John WA7UARJohn WA7UAR Member ✭✭
    edited September 9

    @Tim - W4TME, I have constantly heard a rumor in the community of MARS users that the 6600 has a slot, inside the chassis, that was designed to accept a RapidM modem card. Does anyone actually know if this rumor is true or just a urban myth? Does anyone have pictures they can share of the internal layout of the 6600? Is there a schematic?

  • Tim - W4TMETim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin

    @John WA7UAR The schematics for the FLEX-6000 are not publicly available.

    There is no support for any internal add-on cards.

    And it is company policy not to discuss or speculate on possible future hardware and software features until their release is imminent.

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