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Upgrading to v2.xx------ Yes or No

Larry Williamson
edited May 2020 in SmartSDR for Windows

Currently running the 6500 with version 1.11.12

I have be debating and whether to upgrade to v2.x for quite some time now but haven’t as of yet.

1.11.12 has been working great with no issues that I am aware of.

At this time I am not interested in working remotely (at least not now)

I have read all the release notes and have come to the conclusion that most of v2.**** has been to accommodate the 6400/6600 rigs/maestro and/or fix issues within v2.x itself.

I also realize there is a bit of eye candy thrown in there for good measure.

So my question is—is it worth it to upgrade to v2.x IF I am not interested in working remotely OR eye candy?

It would be a no brainier if someone said “I just upgraded and man, I can’t believe the difference! The NB works better or the receiver works better etc. etc. etc.)

Regards,

Larry


 


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Answers

  • Rick - W5FCX
    Rick - W5FCX Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    I like the new S meter enhancements and the way it starts/stops CAT and DAX automatically, which was a pain before. I haven’t noticed any other major new features operationally, at least that I use.
  • Johan / SE3X
    Johan / SE3X Member
    edited October 2018
    Never had the Ver 1 software. Came into the Flex family 6 months ago and immidiatelly upgraded my 6700 to V2. It was included with the radio, hence not much to think about. At same time upgraded my Maestro and never had a problem.

    As a former IT professional I have always found it important to follow program/SW upgrades. There is a reason suppliers send out version upgrades and updates and I like to be in the forefront of the "train".

    Not much of an answer to your specifik question .. more of a general comment on upgrading software.
  • VE7ATJ_Don
    VE7ATJ_Don Member ✭✭
    edited July 2019
    Generally, the major enhancements to 2.x have been, as you said, focused on the remote operation and support of the new rigs.  However, there have been improvements to the overall operation of the rig and the stability of SSDR.  Some of these have been incorporated into the 1.x releases, but as Flex pointed out, 2.x is on a somewhat different code-base, and I believe that, as we move along further, changes will be included in 2.x which cannot be accommodated into the 1.x stream. 

    The question of whether it is 'worth' the $200 upgrade fee is really up to you.  My thought was similar to Johan's in that I'm investing in the future of my flex 6500, rather than maintenance of the current one...

  • Paul - K6HR
    Paul - K6HR Member
    edited June 2018
    Same here. I've been running v1.x and just upgraded last week. Although v1 worked fine, I came to realize it was money well spent, and I probably should have done it sooner!
  • Rick  WN2C
    Rick WN2C Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    I think it comes down to what you want to do with the radio. My suggestion is to look at the release notes for each new version that has come out and use that information to determine if any new features interest you or would make your operating better. I myself had a 6300 and traded up to a 6400M and am glad I did. When I had the 6300, I was using the last version 1.11 and it worked just fine but at the same time if there was a problem within the software Flex would have to fix it in that version.having said that, by looking at the post on here I don't believe many (or any) have had problems with it.

    YMMV
    73
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Here is something to consider, Flex has done lots of under the hood tweeks on each update. And not all of them are listed in the notes. They just call them under the hood...

    The main thing is V1 has come to the end other than to fix something if needed.
    But V2, you can take advantage of any new features planned, but if you stay with V1 and there is nothing wrong with that, you simply stay put. Ya I would spring for it.
  • Mark WS7M
    Mark WS7M Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Here are the non remote list of things I like:
    • S-meter improvements including showing peak
    • Pop out windows.  IE pans, CWX, radio paneles can be separated from the main window
    • Start/stop DAX automatically - When dax remains running it can eat up radio resources
    • CWX fixes.  Some things in CWX work better
    • Color fill on the panadapter
    • Split button makes doing TX/RX splits easier
    • Minimized slice flags show frequency readout
  • roger na4rr
    roger na4rr Member
    edited April 2020
    I took advantage of the ICOM $200 rebate a couple of months ago and got 7300.  The noise reduction is head and shoulders better than the 6700.  I use the receiver in the 7300 on high noise days but keep the 6700 in line for xmit and panadapter.
  • Rick - W5FCX
    Rick - W5FCX Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Roger - any idea why the noise reduction is better in the 7300? Is it a hardware limitation of the 6700?
  • WW1SS - Steve
    WW1SS - Steve Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Do a search. It is all over the forum about the Flex noise mitigation or lack of it.
  • Rick - W5FCX
    Rick - W5FCX Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    I’m aware of the problem - we all are. I’ll search for the solution. First time I’ve heard it’s solved by Flex.
  • WW1SS - Steve
    WW1SS - Steve Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    It's not solved by flex. It is still a problem
  • Larry Williamson
    edited June 2018

    Thanks for all the interesting replies. I have been wading through a lot of posts over the last few days looking for an answer to my question. The majority what I have read is that v2.**** is mostly user conveniences along with fixes for the 6600 and maestro.

    I am always playing with the WNB and ANF to attempt to reduce noise and not one time have I ever been successful. Maybe the WNB and ANF are considered “user conveniences”??

    Makes me wonder if we have reached a point in technology where things like receiver performance just can’t be improved upon (until some new type of technology comes out).

    How long has the 6700 been at the top of the list on the Sherwood reports? 4-5 years I bet, has the receiver been improved much over that time?

    User conveniences are nice and a few of you have convinced me to upgrade.

    Regards

    Larry

  • Ian1
    Ian1 Member
    edited May 2020
    Larry I am with you on this from what I have seen its just not worth upgrading. There is nothing in the 2.0 version that would improve my Flex 6700 operation. Ian
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018
    One thing I know is, The WNB does work, imagine a noise of S9 to 0 when the WNB is turned on? I have a terrible noise problem here sometimes that renders 40m unusable. There are some great video's showing how effective it works, but with the type of noise it is designed for.

    Will there be a better receiver than direct sampling? who knows.
  • Tim - W4TME
    Tim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited June 2018
    it works if you have the type of noise that the noise mitigation is designed to operate on.




  • Brian Morgan VK7RR
    Brian Morgan VK7RR Member ✭✭
    edited December 2018
    I  disagree with comments that it is not worth upgrading from Ver. 1. I think that it is easy for us to be carried along by our past experiences and not "experiment" with updates to the software, or not experiment enough. My experience was that Ver. 2 resulted in many subtle improvements. When I bought my first Flex radio in the early days, a major selling point was that the software would be upgraded from time to time. This has occurred.
    In all my years of owning Icom, Yaesu etc, I have never had an upgrade. Once you buy the radio, that is what you have for the life of the rig. With Flex, some of the more recent upgrades have come about because of feedback from users of features that they want to see. So into the future, why limit your ability to have the benefit of upgrades? 
    I do use remote, but have done so since before Flex time. Yes, I now have a Maestro and I can quickly check conditions using my smartphone when away from the shack.
    But in every day use in the shack, I think that Vers.2 outperforms 1. 
    Finally, the cost of joining the Version 2 club is minimal in the scheme of things. I paid more than that for a length of heliax the other day.
  • Mike W9OJ
    Mike W9OJ Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    If you don't use remote you just have to decide if the cosmetic enhancements are worth $200.

    73 de Mike W9OJ
  • Rick - W5FCX
    Rick - W5FCX Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Exactly. How $200 can be a barrier to anyone who can afford a Flex is a mystery.
  • KP2L
    KP2L Member ✭✭
    edited October 2018
    I think that when version 2.3 comes out (soon) having spots on the panafall may be a game changer for you.  The other thing to think about is an upgrade is contributing to even further software development by Flex. And it does cost big money to pay and retain developers.  Nowhere else do you get a new radio every time a new version of the software comes out. Vers. 1.0 software will never get any better, and the capabilities of your radio will remain the same. 

  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Mike, what about the under the hood tweeks they do to improve performance, these are things that go unnoticed.
  • Bill Roberts
    Bill Roberts Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    My way of upgrading to 2.0 was to buy a new radio, a 6600.  I also don't have plans to operate remote.  The new panadaptor fill and S-meter are nice.  My previous main radio was a 6300.  Whether the improved audio rendering is the new hardware or in the new software, I don't know.  I do agree with the fellow IT professional (I'm now retired) that it's a wise investment to keep up with the latest software.  

    I also feel it's the "right" thing to do.  Flex invests in their trouble ticket system, bug fixes, financially supporting this community, etc.  Asking people to subscribe to and support their effort and value to us with an extra $200 every few years is reasonable.  How many would easily part with $200 for a nice meal or attending a sporting event that's here today and gone tomorrow.  Software development and maintenance isn't free.  I'd upgrade.
  • Mike W9OJ
    Mike W9OJ Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    What under the hood tweaks?
  • Delbert McCord
    Delbert McCord Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    What gave me pause with the upgrade was the requirement to have it phone home to verify me.  I purchased a 6400, still have not tried it, the 6300 is still working........ Hopefully in the fall I will try it out. 
  • Rick  WN2C
    Rick WN2C Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    So let me get this right...you bought a 6400 and it still sit in the box?
  • Rick  WN2C
    Rick WN2C Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    All I can say on the whether to upgrade or not is... where else are you going to get a new radio for $200 ??
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Delbert, that is a confusing remark, upgrading what? Call home? A new radio sitting for months? why?
  • Steve K9ZW
    Steve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018

    @Larry - you've posed a strictly personal question. 

    If you are happy and all works like you expect & are happy with, leave things alone. 

    You can always change versions.

    Only additional consideration is if you would decide to sell your 6500 you can expect to either have to pay to upgrade to sell it, or to have to discount it for not being upgraded. 

    If you might upgrade or change hardware anytime soon, you might prefer to enjoy the changes with version 2.x rather than paying for the version upgrade but never getting to use it when you sell your radio.

    YMMV but personally in your shoes I'd upgrade, as I am always interested getting the best performance out of my radios. 

    73

    Steve K9ZW

  • Mark WS7M
    Mark WS7M Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    As a software developer for 40+ years people have always had a very hard time paying for software.  It certainly is getting better but ask yourself the question:

    If you had a refrigerator, one of the new ones, perhaps a Samsung and Samsung came along and told you there was a new "software update" for your refrigerator that cost $200 and it would give you a certain set of features... how would you feel?

    While not a perfect analogy the idea is the same.  People bought a box.  A Flex Radio Box and they don't realize that software is what drives the box and the subconscious thought of having to pay for a software upgrade sometimes is the block.
  • Mark WS7M
    Mark WS7M Member ✭✭
    edited June 2018
    First, SmartLink does use a "server".  But that is only if you use SmartLink.  If you startup SSDR and you are local to your radio, you bypass SmartLink and connect direct.

    This is how it appears to me and seems to be the case in looking at my network activity.

    So I don't get the phone-home analogy...   It does need to validate you have a valid license, that is a one time deal and as was mentioned in these forums many times the license data is stored in the radio, or at least that is what I thought.

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