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Dayton 2015 Report - Unofficial



  • SteveJSteveJ Member
    edited May 2015
    I find it very hard to believe that Kenwood, Icom and Yaesu are not selling HF radios well.  SDR is not being as well adopted as some of you might think.  New models of knobbed radios may not be introduced as often as in the past but they will be.  SDR still has a long way to go.
  • Ernest - W4EGErnest - W4EG Member ✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Thank you Howard!

  • Ned K1NJNed K1NJ Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
         Good point; an economic context for a reality check.

    Ned,  K1NJ
  • Ned K1NJNed K1NJ Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
       Flex has the technology to go that "long way" and they are doing the work
    to get there.

    Ned,  K1NJ

  • Ed, K0KCEd, K0KC Member ✭✭
    edited September 2017
    I wonder if DARA has considered a local community college or university for the Hamvention?

    Universities normally have large indoor sports facilities and lots of parking. They also have classrooms for presentations. The dates for the Hamvention could be adjusted to fall into the period between spring semester and a summer session.

    As a bonus, I bet the contents of the toilets travel in the right direction!

    Ed, K0KC
  • Ned K1NJNed K1NJ Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
       That amplifier with the control interfaces are the "killer app" (pardon my abuse
    of the term), that will be a huge step forward for Flex.
      What a wonderful partnering combination this will be!

    Ned,  K1NJ

  • rfoustrfoust Member ✭✭
    edited March 2017
    Great post! Great responses in this thread too.
  • KD8KKD8K Member ✭✭
    edited December 2017
    One option in the Dayton area might be the Nutter Center at Wright State University.


  • Richard McClelland, AA5SRichard McClelland, AA5S Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    How about Las Vegas instead?   Plenty of facilities and I could get my XYL interested in going there.
  • Ken - NM9PKen - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    You have to be an old **** to relate to this fully.  My first real ham receiver, an Allied A2516, actually made by Trio, cost me $99 in 1973, new at Allied Radio in Indianapolis.  That took months and months of passing papers and mowing lawns as an 8th grader.  In today's money, that would be about $525.
  • Ned K1NJNed K1NJ Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016

           Used Heath AT1 - 1958, $27.00.  Zenith swl rx my brother found in the
    town dump 0$.  Got jobs in a local ham store.  Conditions improved rapidly.

    Ned,  K1NJ
  • Gerry HullGerry Hull Member
    edited May 2015
    Hey Bill,

    Snubbed?  First of all, if you were in the talk, you would have said that Tree was not there... Dennis, W1UE, and myself did the talk.

    We simply don't have any experience with Flex radios.  I've been a ham 40 years, and been a contester more than 35 of them.  I've operated from many of the best stations in the world -- and have yet (up until this Dayton) to see anyone who has come across a very serious contest solution running Flex hardware.  That does not mean it is not possible or a great solution -- it just means we (Dennis and I) had not come across it yet.  403A may prove us all wrong.  Ir certainly is intriguing. 

    I say to all: Beware of those preaching religion:  Both Flex and Elecraft (just mentioning the American manufacturers)  have fine radio gear, and have Zealots among their fans. Trashing a competitive technology of vendora is no way to win over people, especially as a marketing strategy.  Flex should be ashamed of this post above.

    It presumes the rest of the Amateur Community, including vendors, are all "idiots" because they don't use a pure SDR strategy.   There is room at the table for many technologies.  Flex's strategy looks very good: the proof will be in the pudding.   Contesters are the most demanding users... if it works, they will flock to the Flex -- without all the bashing.


    Gerry  W1VE | VE1RM | 6Y6C | 8P1V | VY1AAA among many others.,,
  • Bill W2PKYBill W2PKY Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Sorry for the mistake on the talk, I just copied the title from the program. Was not paying attention to the announcement of the speaker. I don't subscribe to any religion I just think we should embrace our American companies.
  • edited June 2015
    I came back sick as well.  This was my third year attending.  I think it may be the last. I expected Hara to be the hole it has been the last few years, but I didn't expect the Grand hotel to be much like Hara, especially when it comes to the restrooms.  I've attended many catered events over the years, but never have I seen the venue run out of food.  Was that a cost saving measure or just incompetence?  I felt bad for FRS.  They paid for a service and clearly didn't get what they paid for.  I accepted a free drink ticket rather than a refund.  I figured I'd feel better after a ****.  Unfortunately they ran out of the one **** I liked.  I still enjoyed the banquet.  The speakers were awesome.

    It's clear that Dayton is in a state of rapid decline.  There are many things that make Hamvention such a great event.  However, there is a point when the sad state of the venue starts to overshadow the event itself.  I still heard conversations about the infamous sewer line incident.  I'm glad I missed that.
  • pa0biepa0bie Member
    edited May 2015
    I have always good experience with the NAB convention in LAS Vegas.
  • Ross BiggarRoss Biggar Member ✭✭
    edited September 2017
    Howard deserves his award, his was a well written and enlightening report , it gave me a very good feel of what happened and what was available at Dayton. Thanks Howard.
    And yes I have ordered a Maestro, and a verbal order for the new amp, even tough they are not yet available.
    At the rate that Flex are bringing out new products, they will soon surpass Elecraft.
    Regards Ross
  • KY6LA_HowardKY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited February 2018
    Gerry Hull W1VE

    I am sorry to hear that you misinterpreted my post as "Trashing a competitive technology of vendora" 

    I would suggest you read my presentation "SDR-101" which can be found at:


    So that you will get a proper historical and technological perspective on the evolution of radio technology.

    It is a FACT that Superhet with DSP were invented circa 1980.  It is a fact that these technologies have been developed as far as practical and that even small performance improvements become extremely expensive. such as the Hilberling and the 7851 come to mind. 

    It is a fact that the term SDR has captured the imagination of Ham Operators... So much so, the both Elecraft and Icom have started to misrepresent their Circa 1980 technology Superhet with DSP as SDR's  to try to capture the uninformed market.   

    Finally it is a fact that due to "Moore Law" SDR's have started to pull away from the Superhet technology with not only better performance but much better price performance.  Although I have not studied the Baofeng, I suspect that they are using an SDR to so totally beat the Japanese on price.

    In the longer term it MY OPINION that it is pretty obvious that SDR's will dominate the radio market on Price Performance alone.

    I am currently working on a Presentation for Friedrichshafen
    "Four Generations of SDR and Products"  which i will also publish on this forum after I present it on June 27th 

  • Ken - NM9PKen - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Aha!  You ARE an old... well... never mind!   <grin>
    1958!  You've  got me beat by 15 years.  It must have been very interesting operating during the sunspot peak of all peaks!  I wasn't born 'till 1959.  Perhaps sunspot activity got ingrained into my DNA?
  • Robert -- N5IKDRobert -- N5IKD Member ✭✭
    edited May 2015
    I think that HamCom should be the premier Ham radio venue.

    ...Just sayin'.
  • Walt - KZ1FWalt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Boxborough (Boxboro), MA comes to mind. FRS goes there anyway!! Lots of conference room. TMK nobody has gotten sick there and the sewers don't back up and neither do the toilets.
  • Walt - KZ1FWalt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Kenwood just upgraded the TS-590 to the TS-590SG.
    Elecraft had a K-3 recall for the synthesizer months ago but recently introduced the K-3S.
    "Superhet/SDR Architecture  The K3S delivers the best of both worlds: a hybrid of software-defined radio (SDR) technology and our proven, high-dynamic
    range superhet receive architecture. The optional KRX3 high-performance, fully independent sub receiver offers true diversity operation to reduce fading. 32-bit DSP provides stereo effects, NR, EQ, notch, and built-in PSK31/CW/RTTY decode/encode."

    The P3 now does transmit monitoring.

    I realize this is a FRS site and discussion board but it isn't as if Kenwood and Elecraft are falling over DOA.
  • William HeinWilliam Hein Member
    edited July 2015
    I am sorry I couldn't make it to the remote op forum, had to do booth duty!

    Personally, I am thankful for all manufacturers who support our wonderful hobby which includes Flex, Elecraft and many more.

    I have a 6700 (shack) and a KX3 (car). Both FRS and Elecraft are wonderful organizations with excellent products.
  • SteveMSteveM Member
    edited December 2015

    Your suspicions regarding the Baofeng radio are correct. The design is based on the RDA1846 SDR chip.

  • Mike WhatleyMike Whatley Member
    edited February 2017
    thank You Howard for your Post Dayton Report.

    Though I would take issue with one observation.  
    Dayton.. usual FILTHY disgusting arena with overflowing toilets.. As an American I am shamed that Foreign visitors have to see Ham Radio's Mecca as such a worse than 3rd world place..
    There is nothing wrong with the Dayton Ham Fest. This is what Hams want. (And deserve in my opinion)

    Dayton, Ohio is a high crime, low tech, high school dropout rate  and a rust belt city is the perfect place for Amateur Radio's permiere convention.  It reflects the values of many (if not most hams) . DARA is unfit to sponsor or oversee any Hamfest in my view.   But in Dayton where a "disgusting" environment is the norm, DARA marches  on as if this is normal.  I know I know, it's not DARA's fault. 

    For many years Hams have postedt these "wasn't it terrible at Dayton this year"  -- "DARA is great but the show is a disaster zone"   No one is held responsible. That's the way they live in Dayton. And Hams want it that way.  If they didn't they would not return year after year to this "Mecca" as Howard calls it.

    Sociologists will tell you. "Dont listen to what people say".  "Watch what they do"

    It's kind of like No-Coders who claim they're going to learn Morse.  Yet Watch what they do!  Or Obese people who lead slovenly and slothful lives (Like many Hams) claiming they're on a Diet and going to lose weight. (Watch what they Do!...CDC statistics will easily disprove these claims.)

    And in this case Hams return to Dayton repeatedly to be subjected to the same conditions that other cities and venues would never allow.    Watch what they do!

    Until the ARRL and major Vendors  boycott Dayton, the parade will continue at this crass and ostentatious venue.  It is amusing and pathetic that other wise smart companies continue to send their employees to Dayton knowing full well some will return physically sickened. (N5AC VP Engineering of Flex Radio says as much in  this thread)  What if a FLEx employee refused to go to Dayton Out of health concerns? What would N5AC do in that case? 

    As an American I could care less what Foreign Hams think of the Dayton Ham fest.  In my opinion,  the ARRL,  DARA and the City of Dayton don't care either. 


  • km9r.mikekm9r.mike Member
    edited May 2015

    Thanks for the insight Howard. I was considering the purchase of a second 6300 to join the almost essential so2r group but wasn't certain how well the two would play with say a microham so2r controller. I know other brands play very well with it so I was becoming conflicted. However with your very informative post it appears the conflict was all for naught and the FRS team is/has developed an excellent so2r solution that will require only a single SS rig. When I first contacted flex to purchase, a single 6700 seemed to be the only option for this but alas so2r at a very modest price w/o sacrificing leading edge performance seems to be right around the corner. I am now considering selling my 6.3 to upgrade to 6.5 .

  • William HeinWilliam Hein Member
    edited July 2015
    FYI - you may not need an external controller such as the microHAM to operate SO2R with a Flex 6000 radio (but will need the forthcoming Flex SO2R accessory). I am looking forward to this!
  • Bill W2PKYBill W2PKY Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    I was first licensed in '63 and the old timers talked about working JAs on 6 meters with 20 watts AM. I remember my friends father had a DX40 in an upstairs bed room using a bow tie antenna on the wall and working all over the planet! Imagine if anyone had great equipment then.
  • Jon_KF2EJon_KF2E Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    Thanks for the great update Howard. Have a great trip to Europe and maybe I can find you while you are operating iPad portable.

  • KY6LA_HowardKY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited February 2018

    As I said previously, Both Icom (7851) and Elecraft (K3S) are trying to capitalize on the ever increasing popularity of SDR Radios by misrepresenting the fact that their Legacy Super Het Radios with DSP are SDR's.

    They are NOT even First Generation SDR's...  they are the lastest evolution of the Circa 1980 technology and likely have pushed it to the point of diminishing returns.

    That said Elecraft makes a very competitive product and it looks like my partner in Crime Dennis N6KI picked up a couple of K3S for the N6XT contest station..  

    HOWEVER even Dennis now wants to test out the Flex SO2R and Maestro combination for CQWWDX..   Remember it's all about winning.. so the slightest edge will be the radio of choice....

    if so, he may have to cede the 2015 Curmudgeon of the Year Award to some other deserving soul on this Community

    FINALLY.. as confirmed above Baofeng is taking advantage of Moore's Law to beat the Japanese by using SDR's in their radio's that cost 1/10 the price of the Japanese radios..  You are starting to see the same thing in HF Radio's...SDR's are emerging with significant price performance advantages over Legacy Superhet with alleged SDR features...

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