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Elad FDM-SW2 Software

KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭

I find it amazing how many features the Elad FDM-SW2 software has already and is just a few years old, although the hardware is not as good as a flex the software shows just how far SmartSDR has to go as far as customization and User interface features.

Again this is NOT to say a FDM-Duo is a better radio it is to show that SmartSDR has a long way to go in terms of features and user customization.

In May 2017 SmartSDR and the 6000 series will be over 5 years old and is still only at Ver 1.10 and will jump to Ver 2 but will it be even close in terms this level of features & customization?

Yes I know WAN is coming in Ver 2 and that's great but will that be it, I guess will just have to see...




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Answers

  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    Things I see that I like:
    Cluster in the panadapter
    dBm displayed along with S units
    All rx audio in one panel instead of clicking on slice flags
    Audio spectrum is nice eye candy and may be somewhat usefulFront panel display and buttons seem useful at a glance

    Anything else you see that you like? 
  • Mike va3mwMike va3mw Member ✭✭
    edited February 17
    What hardware does this run on?  His website doesn't easily mention what it is.  Or, at least I missed it.
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Elad FDM duo which is a direct sampling DDC/DUC SDR. 

    Full spec:
    http://ecom.eladit.com/FDM-DUO/en

    It's QRP, not 100w, but that won't matter soon. 
  • Scott N8UMWScott N8UMW Member
    edited April 2017
    I have been wondering about this as well. I think the flex is great hardware, but we're not seeing any major profession of the software.
  • Jim GilliamJim Gilliam Member
    edited April 2017

    I can't see how Version 2 can be any better than using a VPN with the VPN servers built into the router as with the Asus line. I, honestly, can't tell the difference in performance using VPN a hundred miles away or locally on a LAN. I, like yourself, would like to see more features.


    Jim, k6QE

  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    The difference would be that people could set it up more easily than a VPN, and it would allow using Maestro on the road without an external VPN like a Raspberry Pi or a laptop. There would also be compression to reduce bandwidth usage, even on VPN and I believe the Flex folks have mentioned that you'd be able to share radios with friends eventually. But WAN is just one of many new features being rolled out anyway, I think it's just the opening shot, and not the end of it. 

    There are some situations where VPN won't work, such as ISPs with carrier grade NAT. Hopefully the WAN feature will. 
  • Norm - W7CKNorm - W7CK Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    I agree with Jim.  I took the effort to install VPN and now that function is rock solid.  I no longer really need it built into the radio/software.   What I really want are standard features that I've been doing without for several years now.  Shoot, at this rate, by the it includes the features of my other rigs, the hardware will be outdated.

    I worked in the computer and software development field most of my life and I understand how difficult and time consuming it can be at times.   With that said, the development of SmartSDR seems to be much slower than what I expected.
  • Jim GilliamJim Gilliam Member
    edited April 2017
    I agree in part. Having the server built into the router takes me about 5 minutes to set up the VPN. However, experience has enhanced that time. I much prefer using the iPad or iPhone than the Maestro. That is where I agree, it is necessary to use an external computer acting as the VPN server to utilize L2TP on the IOS. I would be nice not to need an external server with the Apple toys. I am not sure IOS will ever gravitate to Layer 2 OpenVPN.
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited June 23

    Hi Ria, I like all of the things you mentioned.

    This is a few of the things I like...

    1. User definable Band preset BUTTONS.

    2. User definable Color coded slice receivers.

    3. User definable Movable and dock-able windows.

    4. User definable AGC(T) parameters.

    5. User definable Receive filter presets.

    6. Shows frequency at courser position.

    7. Data values shown next to all sliders and buttons all of the time, Not just when you hover the mouse courser.

    8. Extensive recording & playback features such as Audio with ability to save files, I&Q audio and much more.

    9.info display showing Spectrum & waterfall displays. (Span width, FFT Resolution, Scale, Averaging level.

    10. Many values shown in dBm scale.

    11. Full use of right mouse button. (Right Click Windows)

    12. Handy built-in log book.

    13. Ability to lock slice’s to center of screen so you can scroll pan adapter.

    14. Squelch for each receiver slice for all modes.

    15. Ability to tune with Keyboard.

    16. Lots of use of Shift, Ctrl, & Alt buttons. (Eg. Shift+Drag)

    17. Measurement markers, Delta Markers.

    18. Audio spectrum & FFT windows.

    19. FREE Wireless Android app.

    20. Ability to customize UI colors.

    I could go on and on but you can clearly see from this one video how far behind SmartSDR is it terms features. And in this video David only shows a fraction of what the software is capable.

    Now one last thing I know there will be some that say that the screen is to busy and for some that may be true BUT SmartSDR could have a menu option for “Standard Display” for a simplified UI like it is now Or an “Advanced Display” for those more advanced users that like to see more status info at a glance. This way all users would be happy.

    Again this is NOT to say that the FDM-Duo is a better radio it’s to show how far SmartSDR needs to go in terms of features.

    I hope Version 2.0 is not just about WAN I hope we see a lot more features such as these Especially for the $200 they expect us to fork over for V.2.

    Again keep in mind the 6000 series is over 5 years old and the software is only at 1.10 and to jump to 2.0 soon as a $200 paid version? At the current software development pace by the time we see features like this the radio will be Old and obsolete.

    Either FRS makes software development a real priority and hires a bunch more software developers or the competition will **** them by quickly. You can only be a leader if you stay ahead of the competition. The 6000 series is awesome and has great potential but it’s the Software that’s holding it back.

  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    I like some of those features, but don't really care for some of them. The logbook, for example, would not be useful on a PC. On mobile it is integrated into SSDR for iOS, and that's fine. I would definitely like the ability to record to a file from within the client (it's possible using external software). FFT and audio spectrum display

    The Android app being free, that one would be more of a business decision. Elad also doesn't have a full radio Android app, it's just a display. I suspect that since an Android app would require development resources that it would probably not be free. Like SSDR for iOS it could be contracted out. 

    What I'd like to see:

    Effective NB and NR
    Full antenna switch integration and USB cable integration with antenna ports
    Some basic remote functionality - rotor interface, amp control, steppir (we're getting that with PG XL)Multiuser connection (rumored)
    "Maestro mini" control panel to be used with SSDR on a PC

    I'm not so sure I agree with the assessment on the pace of development, but I haven't been in the Flex world that long, so I can't really give an accurate assessment on that. 

    I really doubt that 2.0 will be just about WAN.

    WAN is a pretty big deal for some who aren't power users. I have had numerous private requests to help with VPN setup for those who wanted remote today. I wrote a script, I also wrote some code for a turnkey LAN to LAN VPN, complete with wifi connection, reset button (to clear saved wifi) and a status LED. This is for Maestro use. The new revision of the script also generates profiles for easy configuration of iOS devices, so one setup rules them all. 

    Still, people ask for help to the point where they tell me they will ship the boxes to me from Amazon and I set it up. I've done quite a bit of them. You would not believe the demand for this. You don't see it here because then people would have to wade through and figure it out themselves. 

    What I've noticed is that while I take my computer knowledge for granted, a lot of people think what I'm doing for them is magic. And this is what the WAN feature will bring to the table. It will bring a remote solution that isn't overwhelmingly difficult to setup, and require mucking with port forwarding or similar, or VPN setup. No figuring it out yourself or asking someone to do it for you. You take your radio, plug it in, go through the set up procedure and then you are remote from anywhere.

    But anyway, I agree with you that WAN should not be the only feature, but for sure it is going to be a marquee feature. 
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017

    Yes android app is just a basic remote app to control radio witch might be fine for some users just Not contesters :) But it is FREE.

    Agreed better DSP implementation of NB & NR.

    “I'm not so sure I agree with the assessment on the pace of development, but I haven't been in the Flex world that long, so I can't really give an accurate assessment on that.  “

    The 6000 series is over 5 years old and still in Ver 1., and severely lacking in many of these convenience features.
  • Jim GilliamJim Gilliam Member
    edited April 2017
    There is the side of competition. The 7300 has really been a big seller. I am not sure why, but SDR seems to be a buzz word floating around and the 7300 really isn't what we Flexers consider an SDR radio. The 7610 is on the horizon and I notice that the back chassis has an Ethernet plug for LAN. I am sure it eventually will be WAN remote-able like the 7800 and 7850 but missing many many feature that makes the Flex radio so enticing. It is my sincere hope that competition will give more impetus to software enhancements.
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017

    Yes Jim,

    Not all SDR are equal and the new Icoms’s are nice but they are not to the level of a Flex’s performance, However it’s the “S” in SDR that is what is going to set each of these radios apart. Again the 6000 series is an awesome & powerful platform but it’s just the software that's holding this amazing rig back!
  • Scott N8UMWScott N8UMW Member
    edited April 2017
    I totally agree on the noise blanker. I don't know how well it works inn the 6500 or 6700 radios. It sucks on the 6300.
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    It doesn't make much of any difference on my 6700 except for things like electric fences. But even the Icom Pro3 and IC7000 has a better NB. 
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    I have had decent result with NB and WNB on my 6500 with some noises when you get the levels right but certainly not best in class.
  • RickRick Member
    edited April 2017
    As a 6300 user who has grown somewhat tired of he wait for software improvements and disenchanted wih SmartCAT and the problems it can cause I recently bought an icom 7300 and honestly love it. Not fuss, no mess no computer conflicts it just works and very well I might add. Trying now to decide whether or not to hold on to the 6300. I guess I've grown tired of trying to stay on the bleeding edge :) too old I guess Rick, W2JAZ
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017

    Yeah the whole industry has been bling sided by Icom's 7300 sales success. Many believe that the 7300 may go down as one of the best selling transceivers in amateur radios history! That's is not to say it’s better performing radio than a flex radio but it meets the needs and price point of the mass majority of the ham radio market.

    I’m sure since Icom has hit the ground running with their entry in to the “SDR” market they wont sit back and just let the competition pass them by. I’ll bet they are in full on R&D mode to keep this new lead in the market.
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    A radio with SDR technology at that price point is a winner for sure. Even if performance is not as good as the higher end Flexes. 
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Yeah IC-7300 only $1300 retail! And I bet even less during Hamvention week!
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited October 2018
    Here just look at what Darrin KE9NS, ONE MAN has done with PowerSDR in his most recent update.
    Now if one man can do all of this how can't a fairly modest sized company like FRS not do a little better with SmartSDR has far a features? Oh and BTW at this point he's only asking for Donations.
    http://ke9ns.com/flexpage.html



  • RickRick Member
    edited July 2017
    I know as I also have a Flex 5000A. His upgrades are amazing and the package is rock solid. This is why I hang on to my legacy Flex. With the V/U module and 2nd rx it is the best satellite and possible EME radio available. 
    Rick, W2JAZ
  • Steve K9ZWSteve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited April 2017
    The horse is dead, beating can stop. Side by side IC-7300, IC-7800 and Flex-6300.... guess what? All make great QSOs and are fun! The IC-7300 is a blast for the price point, and the compromises to make it affordable are less than what has had to be trimmed from other similarly priced rigs. The IC-7800 pounds out QSOs like nobodies business and has enough knobs to please anyone. Big pretty display and hears very well. The Flex-6300 has exceptional ears, plays well with other station automation and computers. Fronted by a Maestro it is a neat blend of several styles of operations and I do like taking the Maestro outside to enjoy the outdoors. As for software, IC-7300 is let down with basically no offering, the IC-7800 has rudimentary add on offerings, and we know that SmartSDR even limited by the Flex-6300 hardware rocks in comparison with the present v 1.10. Upgrades? Not so much for the Icoms it seems, and we know a new major release of SmartSDR is coming soon. So two are pretty static and the FRS is on an evolutionary track. Any yet they all make QSOs and in the case of the IC-7300 and Flex-6300 there have been times when popularity led to long lead times for buyers. The Elad is also way cool and has its pros/cons, but I cannot speak to it from a hands on point. Anticipating myself much change in SmartSDR with v2.0 and beyond. And far from unhappy or looking for a new "next best thing" with v1.10. Have fun and let's see what rolls out for Hamvention in three weeks! 73 Steve K9ZW
  • Scott N8UMWScott N8UMW Member
    edited April 2017
    I wish he would do something comparable with power sdr based hpsdr for the Anon rigs. Regardless, you can still get in the menu and fine tune all the things we're locked out of on the flex signature series. And the noise blanker on the 200d works beautiful. LOL
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017

    "Have fun and let's see what rolls out for Hamvention in three weeks!"


    I hope they knock our socks off with a major update with lot's of new and exciting features such as some of the one see in these videos.

    But to be honest after 5 years and were still only at V1.10 OK V2.0 I’m not holding my breath. I hope I am totally wrong and if so I will eat my words!
  • RiaRia Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    I'll be at Dayton and the Thursday event. I might even hang around the flex booth for a bit. See you guys there.
  • RickRick Member
    edited October 2018
    I know as I also have a Flex 5000A. His upgrades are amazing and the package is rock solid. This is why I hang on to my legacy Flex. With the V/U module and 2nd rx it is the best satellite and possible EME radio available. 
    Rick, W2JAZ
  • Mark ErbaughMark Erbaugh Member
    edited April 2017
    The software works with the Elad FDM-Duo
  • K4MTK4MT Member
    edited April 2017
    I agree. He has done wonders with that software. I had a 6000 series and sold it and went back to a 5000A. Did not like the dumbed down smartSDR with little ability to tweak settings.   I am old but not ready to become an appliance operator yet.
  • KC2QMA_JohnKC2QMA_John Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    " I am old but not ready to become an appliance operator yet."

    I too have debated selling my 6500 and going to the 5000A but since I’m am late to the Flex party I figure I would wait a but longer and see If FRS gets going on SmartSDR development and if in due time there is no real progress “I’m Out”. Maybe I’ll try an ANAN or other radio or just wait and see what the competition does.

    I feel bad for the folks who got their 6000 series radio when they first came out 5 years ago and are still waiting for real progress with SmartSDR, especially if they previously owned a 5000 and had all of those features taken away. I have only been waiting a few years so I will wait a bit more and see what happens.

    I think Darrin KE9NS might just might be a software genius considering how much he has done in such a short time.

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