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FRS Service and Equipment


Service appears to have deteriorated to the point that you can't talk to a real person at FRS. Both support and or service just direct you to leave a message. They have had my rig since June 20th, and that is the last I have heard from them. Very disappointed with FRS and their rigs. In my opinion FRS has gone substantially downhill in the past few years. The community board seems to be full of unhappy customers. The failure and or problem rate of their equipment, including the new tuners and amplifiers, appears to be higher than most manufacturers judging by the community board. Is it just me or are others experiencing the same thing?


  • Geoff AB6BT
    Geoff AB6BT Member ✭✭✭

    As with most social media platforms you only hear the complainers...

    What do you think the ratio of unhappy/happy customers might be? I certainly have no idea.

  • VE7ATJ_Don
    VE7ATJ_Don Member ✭✭✭

    Hi Pete... I understand it can be very frustrating when you've been without your rig for a few weeks and not getting what you feel are adequate responses from the vendor.

    To answer your question tho... as Geoff pointed out (obliquely) -- satisfied customers of Flex's radios most often do not post about their successes or how wonderful their radios are -- they just enjoy them. We are, indeed, fortunate that Flex has pretty much dedicated employees who monitor these forums and respond when they can with helpful suggestions, troubleshooting tips, etc.

    For myself, I can offer two pieces of recent history. a) I have had a 6500 since 2016 which ran pretty much continuously until 2022. The only problems I have had with it are: 1) the SD card needed to be replaced since it was very old, too small and was in danger of becoming corrupted as the firmware increased in size. After submitting a Help Desk ticket, Flex sent a replacement card to me (in Canada) pretty much the next day, complete with detailed instructions for me to install it myself. It was easy and worked the first time!

    2) Very recently, I got a 'fan speed' error on the 6500. Again, I submitted a Help Desk ticket. I got contacted roughly 3 hours later and after some initial diagnostics via email, Flex told me the CPU and FPGA fans needed to be replaced and could I please send the rig into them to affect the repair. I shipped it at my expense (it was , of course, WAY out of warranty) and it took about a week to arrive. They acknowledged receipt when it came to them and then contacted me again when it arrived on the tech's bench about another week later. The tech emailed me to confirm the CPU and FPGA fans were defective and that they would replace them at no cost to me. He also asked if I'd like them to replace the side cabinet fans as well (since they were pretty old) at a nominal cost. I said sure and the tech notified me the next day that the repairs were completed and that the rig had been tested and aligned and it was back to shipping for return to me. Shipping contacted me the next day and asked how I would like it shipped out. The rig arrived back at my door about a week later via UPS and it has been working perfectly ever since.

    So, long winded way of saying that my experience with Flex has been very different. I do find that patience does help, along with an understanding of how the service industry works. It's not always possible to be 'top priority', especially if there is a particular component that's tough to get, or the problem is difficult to diagnose.

  • K1FR
    K1FR Member ✭✭

    My experiences with Flex match up with Don's. Totally satisfied. Have even had quick and helpful responses from the experts as I tried to figure out how to process VITA 49 DAX I/Q signals. That, to me, is above and beyond what I would expect. FWIW. 😁

    73, Tom


  • Pete La
    Pete La Member ✭✭

    My patience has definitely worn thin, and each day with no communications wears it down even more. The rig is way out of warranty, so it is probably on the back burner. Sure would be nice to hear a little something (anything) from them though. I've never had to send a rig in for repair, but I have gone to repair facilities (Icom) with ham friends in the past to drop off and pick up repaired rigs. That usually took about a week, and that was way before Covid. Maybe my expectations are too high based on the amount I paid for this rig.

    Pete K1OYQ

  • Geoff AB6BT
    Geoff AB6BT Member ✭✭✭

    Pete -- I empathize with you situation, I would be frustrated as well.

    I was only answering part of your opiginal question. I'm sure you are already aware of what I said regarding those who post and those who do not.

  • John KB4DU
    John KB4DU Member ✭✭✭✭

    Well, what frustrates me more is the lack of meaningful software updates. It been years since the 3.0 release with only a few minor bug fixes or tweaks. Some of the bug fixes were for self induced problems, some were fixes for the fixes.

    How many times has the response to a bug report been “known problem”, but no fix delivered.

  • AA1SS
    AA1SS Member ✭✭✭
    edited July 2023

    Yup . . . Other companies can come out with fixes and features in days and weeks . . . "The Leader in Software Defined Radios" takes years. The noise blankers have been S&$t forever and now they're talking v 3.5 and who knows when that will come out and what bugs will be corrected??

  • bahillen
    bahillen Member ✭✭✭

    My recent experience has been annoying in one respect. After my PGXL was received and waiting for repair, I could not get any information on the status. The real status was that it was sitting on a shelf in backlog waiting for an available technician. As soon as the tech started I was notified and analysis and repair was done within a day.

    Two hams in our DX club had the same experience. I would rather they have an additional technician than a technical administrator answering questions on equipment waiting for repair.

    It would be helpful if we could get an estimate of when a technician may be available when it goes into the queue. That information would be helpful for me so that we can make appropriate decisions for setting up alternate operating setup to continue our operations. As an example my PGXL was in queue for 3 weeks during the 3Y0 operation. My friends PGXL was in queue for 6 weeks and got repaired last week.

    it appears once handed off from help desk technician and the receiving department no one is following the status until it goes on the bench. The status is that it is waiting for a technician, period. When receiving moves the equipment into service queue you are informed.

    My 6600 was in for repair 18 months ago and it was in queue one day. Most of the time was spent in transit with UPS.

    I think the customer service and management needs to address this perception of poor customer communication. Also regardless of the communication reduce the backlog to one week. Fly a tech in from Montenegro. If you want to be the best then address the service image.




  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin

    Hi all

    We want to express our gratitude for your patience and thank you for providing us with valuable feedback regarding our support process.

    After discussing the matter with the team manager, we want to assure you that we are diligently working on the repairs in the order they are received, following a "First In First Out" approach, as mentioned in a recent post just last week.

    However, there are instances where repairs might experience delays. This occurs when we start the repair process but encounter difficulties in identifying the root cause or when certain parts needed for the repair are not readily available. Please understand that these situations can cause unexpected delays. Rest assured, your repair isn't lost and we haven't forgotten about you.

    Diagnosing intermittent issues can be quite challenging. Sometimes, customers send in devices with unique failure scenarios specific to their setup, making it difficult for us to replicate the problem on our test bench. We take these repairs seriously, and before returning a device to the customer with a "no trouble found" status, we want to ensure that we haven't overlooked anything. It often requires our technicians to spend an entire day exploring and creating various test scenarios. These "No Trouble Found" (NTF) issues can contribute to delays in our service process.

    Nevertheless, we have been putting in long hours to catch up on the backlog, which is particularly demanding during the summer when we receive a high volume of repairs due to EMP events such as lightning, storm static, rain static, and wind static. We kindly request that you ground your antennas when not in use to minimize these issues.

    While we would love to provide individual updates on every repair, it's currently not feasible as it would take away valuable time from our technicians who are actively working on the bench. We know customers want to hear from the technician, not just someone in an administration role.

    To put it into perspective, imagine how your productivity would be affected if you had to answer the phone or respond to an email every 10 minutes. It can be likened to trying to mow the lawn while constantly being interrupted by phone calls. :)

    The positive news is that our technicians do communicate with you once your radio reaches the bench. Sometimes, they may request additional technical details about the failure scenario, which helps expedite the repair process.

    We continuously evaluate and refine our processes and procedures to enhance efficiency. We are also exploring communication methods that are timely and informative. Currently, we believe our existing approach is effective and avoids bombarding you with generic messages.

    Additionally, we are considering other tools, but their implementation is costly and would ultimately lead to higher radio prices and repair rates.

    We hope this explanation sheds some light on the situation. Again, thanks for your patience.


    (on behalf of the service team)

  • Trucker
    Trucker Member ✭✭✭

    I understand people's frustration with the "apparent " lack of communication from Flex Radio Service. Having experienced that frustration recently, it is understandable. But, the end results is definitely worth the frustration. The best advice I can offer is to have a backup rig/amplifier/ or auto tuner for times like this. It may not be a setup as good as your Flex Radio, but, it will keep you on the air till your radio makes it back home. As for Flex Radio hiring more techs, that's not always as easy as it sounds. Good techs that understand the technology are not that easy to find. And there is a lot of competition wanting to hire them. Same thing goes for software/firmware developers. The developers at Flex Radio are very talented. And finding others with similar talents isn't easy either. And competition for their services is intense. I, like others, get frustrated with Flex Radio for several things. But, Service isn't one of them. I sincerely believe their customer service has been, and still is, top notch. We all need to be a bit more understanding with their customer service as they are very dedicated to providing the best customer service they can.



  • Brian Morgan VK7RR

    I have serviced electronic equipment for over 50 years and still do, although I am now being selective as to what I will look at. Since covid, there has been a massive reduction in availability of components. Just last year I was asked to do a straightforward repair but the components took over 5 months to arrive from another Country. When they did, although labelled correctly they were the wrong rating and not what had been ordered. The customer was frustrated by all this. I had messaged him early on to warn that we were waiting on parts and could do nothing until I received them. I later advised him that the wrong parts had been delivered. At this, he lost patience with me and took his dismantled equipment back. So maybe Flex has similar difficulties at times which only compounds delays. My Flex 6500 went back to its parents a few years back with a fault which required this. It was turned around in 2 days so took longer to get from Australia and longer to get back, than the repairs took to be completed.

    I sympathise with those who suffer delays but I also sympathise with Flex in trying to get repairs attended to promptly but I can only praise their service.

    Brian VK7RR