Was considering buying one for my 6500 but here in the UK it's double what you pay for one across the pond 125UK pounds ($210) or might just pop into FlexRadio HQ and collect one when I visit the states later in the year ;-)
I have 2 FlexControls on my 6700 and use them for tuning and volume control. I toggle one of them to use it for RIT when needed. More detail and pics on this previous post.
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
The mouse and the panadapters visual information allows me to point at a possible signal and 'pounce'. I've got some very difficult DX contacts with the mouse only.
The FlexKnob is more fun for me when I just want to 'tune around'.
Some where else in the forum I express my opinion about the FlexControl. I finally broke down and purchased a used Knob. I can tell you that it is only part of the desk decoration. Although this morning a friend forward me an email from Stu regarding how you can increase the functionality of the FlexControl by using it with DDUtil. I will see how that will increase my usage and let the world know.
However, for now, I will rather use the mouse than the Knob! I only use it to adjust the volume control. The device has many options and in my opinion if you don't label them, they are useless.
I can perform better and faster with the mouse; and no I am not selling but I would suggest buy a use one for less that $75 bucks, try it and see if it is for you.
As you can see from the responses to your query......some folks wouldn't operate without it and then others prefer the mouse. All of us came from the "knob" radio world, and I for one, really enjoy the ability to tune my slice or use some of the other functions you can program into the Flex Control. I also used the FRS 1500, 3000 and 5000 without a "knob" and enjoyed operating those rigs via my trust LogiTech mouse.
Either way you go......you are going to have a very pleasant experience with your FRS 6500, should you decide to make the purchase.
Walt - kz1f
Frankly any knob really slows me down in a contest to have to take my hand off the mouse or a keyboard to twiddle the knob.
I really prefer using a mouse over any knob..
The FlexControl have a few benefits.. mainly it keeps focus on your SmartSDR Screen while you need to move your mouse to that screen to control it...
In contesting, I find that the standard command that come with SmartSDR are not ideal..
However if you connect the FlexControl via DDUTIL.. you do gain enough functionality to make it useful...
I forgot to take a FlexControl this weekend when heading off to do some portable operations from an Island. Wasn't the only thing I forgot, though now I realize how much I use it with the home QTH Flex-6700 and will take it along with the Flex-6300 Portable setup in the future.
With two radios I will need to standardize how I operate at some point, including software & hardware settings and macros.
Having a FlexControl is an experience-improver and a recommended one at that!
Infinitely faster just using the mouse wheel/click in contests for tuning. Set the tune step to 500Hz. More than close enough for any SSB contest or even DX ... Albeit in DX pileup a, 250Hz step might be needed.
Needles to say while I am also a digital guy, no interest whatsoever is human decoding CW.