SmartSDR - Annual Costs - ????

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Ok. This is getting ridiculous.  

$200 a year to keep my radio current?

Of course it is "optional" until it is not optional. 

I have been in IT for 30 years. I have seen this model before, and it did not play out  well for the companies that did it. In the end, they either went under, went to a subscription model, or gave out the software for free.

Why don't you switch to a service model where you charge something like $5 a month or $60 a year. This service can include the remote services, support,  updates, etc.

You will find that most of the owners will go for this model over paying out $200 every year or so for "optional" updates.

The problem with optional updates is that it will introduce security issues to the v2 models since they are internet facing and lets be honest, you are not microsoft and keep legacy systems patches going for years after a release.

The other issue is that the resale value of the radio drops by $200 the minute a new version comes out.  Right now for new flex people, an icom 7300 ( yes, I know it is not a fair comparison but it is a choice people make) NEW costs around $1100.  A flex 6300 costs around $1200 used. Once 3.0 is out, the flex is now worth $1000 at best unless it has ver 3.0 installed.

A newbie to SDR will look at the self contained Icom for $1000 - $1100 NEW and they simply drop it in, or do they want to get a flex and have the learning curve?   This is a conversation that is taking place on the nets right now and most people lean toward the IC7300 since it is good enough and they do not have to pay for updates.

I love my flexradio, but you need to re-evaluate your software model, it will have long term impact on your products.  
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David H Hickman

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Posted 11 months ago

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Tim - G7GFW / F4VQP

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Haven't we been here before when SSDR V2 was released?

Not one comment I have read from those who object to Flex's business model have added anything new to the debate.

Many have said it, including me, if you had read what FRS have said, it was obvious that a 'major' software release, denoted by the change from 1 to 2 or 2 to 3, that this would be a paid upgrade.

Like most Flex users, I have no problem with this model. If I choose not to buy the latest version my radio won't stop work exactly as it does with whatever version of the software I have.

OK, so you don't think that this feature or that feature works or isn't implemented to suit your taste, you are entitled to your opinion and I will defend your right to express it but, by the same token, you cannot deprive me of the right to disagree.

What I find difficult to accept is the vitriolic comments that some people make. We are all supposed to be reasonably educated people, surely it's not difficult to express your opinions in a reasonably educated way?

For me, it was a very big decision to buy a Flex in the first place but having done so, as someone who has been in IT for over 40 years and owned some of the most highly rated radios in nearly 60 years of Hamming, I can honestly say that, as far as I am concerned, FRS produce some of the best radios in the world and my Ham experience is far better now than it ever was.
One last thought, if you can afford 5 Flex radios, then surely you can afford to buy one copy of the software and try it. If you don't think it adds to you experience, don't upgrade your other radios.

The choice is yours, buy the upgrade or don't but please stop whinging about something you knew from day 1 of buying a Flex radio.

Tim

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Kevin

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We've been here before. We'll be here again. New people come to the group. Old people (from a forum perspective) have issues that remain unresolved. $200 is not trivial. For me, that would be paying $200 to stay up to date on the latest code everyone else is using even if I'm not using any of the new features. I do not believe I would get bug fixes to old issues if I stuck with 1.x.

So... maybe not new to you but new or still of importance to others.

The choice is yours, ignore the thread or not but please stop whinging about something you know is going to happen every time someone asks for $200 for questionable (by some) updates.

Point is, there's tons of great threads to join in on in this forum. If this one is not to your liking try one of the others. Or not.

Kev
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I think we need to be clear about a few things.
It is important to understand what a bug in SSDR is and what type it is.

Any bug that effects the performance of the radio or makes the radio work poorly will always be addressed for all the versions, V1  V2 and so on.

Critical  bugs are not version frozen. New features are.

People complaining of having many many bugs? what are they? count them. And in what type are they,,critical or non critical. It is up to Flex to determine what type they are. Not us.
Also, as an example. If Flex decides to work on the NB and ANF again and it happens to fall in V3,xxx,  then that work and corrections would be back ported into V2 and maybe V1 because these filters are not new features. They are pre existing ones needing updating. But as V1 is feature frozen so will V2 at some point. Likely after V3 is out.

If Flex does work on the DSP in a way that it is a new feature in the way it works in V3 or V4,,then yes to get that upgrade we would need to buy that new version.

I know Flex employees do not post here much any more, but if I am way off target then a comment would be nice on this.
(Edited)
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Mike - VE3CKO, Elmer

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ok, my opinion now. Bla, bla bla bla, bla bla, bla bla. Same old, same old repeated many times in the past. Should just cut and paste from old threads. First off the thread title even with the question marks is designed to guarantee responses from both sides. Anyone who thinks there is an annual fee to operate a Flexradio is just plain misinformed for all the reasons stated by many so far. You need to do some BASIC and I mean basic research. It's all been said here many times before but I do understand there are many new users of this community and Flexradio who don't know how to use the search feature of the community.

As per subscription for remote, as much as I don't like to shoot down ideas, the scenario of someone paying a monthly subscription so they can remote in to their own radio is a model that isn't worth the time to discuss. Who will actually pay that? Of all the people I know who have gotten a Flexradio, I can't think of anyone who would every pay a subscription in order to remote to their radio.

I and others have said this in the past. The ball is always in FRS's court when it comes to updates. If the features/improvements are good, people will upgrade. If they are not, they won't. FRS has a track record of implementing innovative and industry leading features and it is in their best interest to continue to do so, and all of us will benefit. OK, said it, now to get off my high horse.
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Michael Coslo

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Hi Mike - You bring up the title of the thread " SmartSDR - Annual Costs - ????"

We can answer that question immediately. 

The annual cost of operating a Flex radio is $0.00. 

You can if you wish, purchase newer versions of the software. No one is forcing anyone. 

But I don't know if they changed the radios, (of course they didn't) but my 6300 I recently traded in, would function very well if I loaded the software from the original disc and ignored it afterward. 

All radios can have issues. All radios do. I also use a K3S. The Panadapter is bad. You can tune and the signal you are looking for disappears in the noise that shows up. Great on CW, Just okay on SSB. Our KPA1500s did get a firmware update recently - to keep them from blowing up on 160 meters. We have a 7610. It's okay, but not terribly intuitive. I could have saved a few thousand by buying one. But it just isn't the radio. And they've been having their own issues. One thing I do know - if I lose power during an update, I don't brick my Flex and have to send it back.

I'd just advise people to consider if they are happy with their radio. I'd advise to try a few experiment with things they think do not work. Life is too short to become angry about a radio, and about paid updates that you may or may not need.
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Ed Stallman

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Simple question, I bought my 6600 new in July 2018 . Will I need to pay for V3 

Thanks Ed N5DG
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Ken Hansen

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Of course, KE9NS incrementally improving mature software is EXACTLY like charting a new software development effort on new hardware.

In computer terms you are marveling at all the amazing things a lone programmer is adding to stand-alone software on an Apple ][ computer, and struggling to understand why it takes so long to develop a multi-user client-server platform. The two environments are worlds apart.

The situation may not be optimal, but countless thousands of owners somehow manage to make contacts on their Signature Series 6000 radios. I hope you enjoy your K4, new radios can be very exciting - and frustrating, just ask an FTDX-101 owner.
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MichaelC

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Well, I'm hoping it won't be any more frustrating than the issues I've had with my 6500 since the beginning.  Here's a list of some of them:

1.  For the 1st 30 to 40 days, the radio kept getting a power error,  and then the problem just stop.  Nothing changed, same power supply, same power cables, the the issue just went away.
2.  My 6500 has never put out more than 75 to 80 watts from 160 to 15 meters and never more than 60 watts on 12 and 10 meters.  That's in any mode, and into a calibrated lab power meter.
3.  The ATU has never worked or has been able to tune anything on 20 meters.  It even fails when tuning into a resonate 20 meter antenna.
4.  The radio has also had the issue of just locking up and sending a high pitch sound out of the speakers.  Only way to clear it, is to turn off the power supply, because the power switch won't even turn off the radio when it locks up.  This still happens as of 3 days ago, just something I've got to live with.  I'm sure it's not a network issue, because the radio is directly connected to the 6500, and the computer shows no network packet drops.
5.  I also get a really neat vibrating noise out of my 6500 every time I transmit,  Some times it sounds like it's getting ready to take off.

And that's just part of the un-documented features, I've had with this 6500.  I've been running Flex radios since 2009, started off with a 5000A and then picked up a Flex 3000 to use when I travel, and I never had any issues with either the 5000A or the 3000 and loved them.  I actually use my 5000A more then I use my 6500, because it won't lock up in the middle of a QSO with a DX station like the 6500 has done more than once.  

Bottom line is this 6500 has been a Lemon since day one.  So I don't think the frustration level will go up much with a new radio.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Wow, I see what you mean. If I ever had any of those problems I would have dumped my Flex.

But I can share what I know.

First off, nothing on that list is a bug. They are all problems caused by the envirement of the shack. Nothing on the list are consistant Flex 6500 issues, they are caused.

#1 was caused from a power supply problem, may not be the power supply but the power connections, somehow it solved it self.

#2 Low power out is may be due to improper load and it can and will very from band to band. My radio puts out close to 100W into a dummy load on most bands. And the power connections may be effecting the TX power problems.

#3 The tuner did not work because of a bad load, 20m can not be resonate on 20m as you say. The 6500 tuner is known to have a good tuner.

#4 There used to be a bug were the radio could freeze randomly. But over the last couple updates this has been mostly fixed. some have had it happen, I have never seen it happen in 3 years.
It sounds like RF getting to the computer or a disconnect to the computer, even with a direct connection.

#5 There are 4 fans in your radio. It sounds like a case fan is on the way out. A ventalation problem? It sounds like it's gettin hot. You said each time you transmit?The fans should not run at high speed till the PA gets to a certain temp. The fans are the only moving parts in your radio. Nothing else can make this kind of noise inside the radio.

The 6500 is a completlty different beast then the 5000 and the possible problems are different as well.
All the problems you mentioned are solvable. If one wants to bother.

As I said, none of these problems are common to the 6000 radios, but any of them can happen depending what caused them.
(Edited)
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MichaelC

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Bill,  I forgot to add one really good un-documented feature of my 6500.  At least once an hour the radio will just stop receiving.  The radio doesn't stop working, the receive signals just drop from around -130 to -150.  But the band does look totally quite when this happens.  The only way to get the receiver to start working again is to click on the Tune button, and key the radio for a few seconds and then un-key the radio, and all of the signals are back.  
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Lawrence Gray

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Michael.

I was thinking about going to a 6600 before I saw the K4.  I now have a K4 on order.   I'll keep the 6500 for digital work.

Larry, W1IZZ
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Pete - W6OP

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You really need to look at the whole idea differently. You buy a PC which is hardware. It came with Windows XP, MSOffice and some other apps. As time goes by you can "pay" for an upgrade to Windows 7 and then to Vista and then to Windows 10. You may also buy MSOffice upgrades and upgrades to other apps.

Or, you can stay on Windows XP and the original version of all your apps until there is something that compels you to upgrade the OS or an app. Or wait and buy a new PC at some future date that has the newer software.

The Flex Radio is the same, you bought a piece of hardware that came with some software and it will continue to work without upgrades. If there is something in the upgrade you want or need bad enough then pay for the upgrade. Or wait and buy a new Flex with new software at some future date.
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Craig Williams

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Best comment so far.
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Joe N3HEE

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Very true.  And lets face it, this technology is moving at a very rapid pace, Flex will inevitably come out with a new or updated hardware platform within the next 5 years.  
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Dave

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They have already discounted and added new hardware 6xxx series.  The 6300/6500 are discontinued but still are eligible for updates. Of course the addition of the 6400/6600 (M).  
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EA4AYW

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Good morning to everybody.
this agreement to pay $ 200 plus taxes, remember it. It may suit the American market.
but not to Spanish.
here in Spain the software costs € 242 which is not $ 200.
It is a high price for these updates.
and more taking into account and we must remember, flex radios do not give them away, they charge an exaggerated price for the 4 components that it has.
I understand that you get a lot of money for old equipment, because you had much more electronics inside.
But the costs of an SDR are much cheaper than a conventional radio.
Remember that the most important thing in our Flex is the software, and not the hardware.
and to some extent I understand that they can charge for the software.
But...
They charge a lot for the hardware, and they charge a lot for the software.
It is true that the Flex market is not that of the radio amateurs, but the military, but I do not agree that each version costs $ 200 plus taxes.
and that these versions leave almost less than 1 year apart.
adding bullshit that for many users, are not necessary.

Remember also, that you are making us pay for errors that occur in programming and that we report to solve and improve.
That is to say that we give them the ideas and they charge us for it.
Which should be the other way around.

It is true that we are not obliged to a certain extent to have to move to a new version, as long as flex solves the programming crashes they have.
and I say this because a very basic thing that is the VOX, it was working properly in versions 1.xxxxx and in version 2.x that has stopped working.
among many things.
I mean we paid $ 200 more taxes for things already solved and damaged in the version that they have charged us.
and further away from solving it, now they go and they take the v3.x
This is unfortunate.

Also, every $ 200 plus taxes that are paid for the flex, this will be constantly devalued if you want to sell it secondhand.
I have a Flex6500, but if this continues, I will be forced to exchange it for the RUSSIAN SDR, (Sun SDR)

It is true that the new versions of the flex 6400m and 6600m seem to look good, until you have one of them.
I do not know if it was the 6400 exhibition that I had the opportunity to play with, but the aesthetics leaves much to be desired.
and the screen when pressed pressed down from its position.
I already say that I do not know if it will be a defect, or that the unit was damaged.
When the cluster was activated, and the data flow was interrupted, the display would go stumbling and would not flow.
leaves a lot to be desired the new flex line for my point of view.

By this I mean that the flex directive, instead of wanting to earn a lot of money at our expense, to think a little about the radio amateurs that are not rich and that paying for a flex is an effort, when more having to pay for errors of programming that are not corrected.
and deceive us with something new that in the case of version 3, is a shit, since this should not be limited from the first versions.
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Ken Hansen

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From where I sit in America, the difference between $200 and €242 looks a lot like cost plus VAT, and that added cost is because of local politics & gov't policies, nothing Flex has any control over.
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EA4AYW

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Sure, but the consumer has to pay, and therefore be flex or state you have to pay € 242. and this comes out of your pocket.
nobody pays you

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Ken Hansen

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The 21.5% VAT is a tax that Spaniards have imposed on themselves to fund their local government, you can't reasonably expect Flex to offer it's goods at reduced prices in high-tax regions.
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EA4AYW

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Totally agree.
In each region you have your taxes.
and this can not be discussed.
But you have to be realistic.
in Spain, the flex license does not cost € 200.
yes no € 240
therefore we are not talking so cheerfully of $ 200.
I know that flex here does not influence,
but if it affects our pocket.
even if you do not want to see it.

and I know that in some other region the tax is still more expensive, as has been said in the thread.
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Mike - VE3CKO, Elmer

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Complain about the amount or the business model, it still all boils down to whether it is worth it to your station to upgrade or not. If your budget can't do it, that's ok because it is optional. Complaining about an optional $200 upgrade doesn't make sense to me, Icom is not offering me any upgrade for my 7600 still the same dumb radio that is loosing it's monetary value and it's value to my station, more and more every day. Since I don't make sense sometimes, I'll put on my complaining hat, let's see where this goes..

Today's Bank of Canada exchange rate on $200 US is $268.58 then we have HST of 13%, so the upgrade hits me at $303.50 Canadian dollars. 303 is a bigger number than 242 so I must getting ripped off. more than Spanish market right? Oh my, is there some radio amateur charity foundation out there to help me pay for my radio and my costly software upgrade? Also let me know if there is a charity fund for not so rich people so I can buy some golf clubs and pay for course fees, oh yeah. I use to have a boat, and had to sell it, Is there a charity to help me fund a new boat, come on.

Taking off that hat, sounds kinda silly doesn't it. I don't drink (too heavily), I don't smoke, cigarettes are very expensive here in Canada and I have family members spending well over $400 a month just smoking alone. That is over $5000 a year, that is just plain crazy I tell them. Quit smoking, reward yourself, go on a nice vacation with that money. So I think I can spend $303 dollars every couple years to upgrade my radio.


(Edited)
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Mark - WS7M

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Craig.  I want one too.  Specifically a CirrusJet or Eclipse EA550!  Still waiting for a call that it's at the airport waiting for me to take possession!
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Michael Coslo

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And I see that version 3 software  still doesn't include my demand for a built in smoker so I can cook a Brisket in it! 
(Edited)
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KC2QMA_John

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I have been saying for years how great it would be to have a built in Coffee maker in my radio.


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Ken Hansen

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Wait! Do you mean when folks say their radio comes from a smoker, they mean a meat smoker?!?! THAT explains the discoloration and smell... now I get it.
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Ken Hansen

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Coffee maker makes sense, my computer has a cup holder!
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Ken Hansen

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€242 = $272 US, so in Spain it is about 36% higher than US. Spain 'enjoys' a 21% VAT, so $200 US price + 21% Spain VAT = €215 euros. You are upset about €27 euros over the US price? I suspect that 13.5% premium you pay in Spain has to do with conversion fees to turn your euro-bucks into greenbacks to pay bills in the US.
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Mark NS9N

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I am really amazed that this forum has come to this level. When you purchased your Flex Radio, if you read alll the information available, you knew what you were buying into.

In the end, if you don’t like the radio or the company’s policies, sell it and move on.

Sorry but I have owned both a 6500, 6600, and a Maestro. All have been great products but when I did not need the Maestro, I sold it. Same for the 6500. Point is, if you don’t like something you have purchased, sell it .

Life it too short to read ongoing blogs about what people like and don’t like and how someone wants to change how a company works.

If you don’t like your Flex radio sell it and buy something you think you will like better. But let’s get this forum back to helping solve technical issues and learning from others.
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KC2QMA_John

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Some of those taxes are why the other countries have universal Healthcare for all of it citizens!

We just use our taxes in the USA to start wars all over the world while ignoring the needs of our own people.

(Edited)
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Having lived in several countries abroad, I’m feeling pretty okay with the USA system. There are lots of axis of differentiation to weigh of course.

I’m also good with FRS present system of charging for major version upgrades, on a per radio basis.

In the end it is FRS’s call how they wanted to structure their program as well. We certainly cannot imagine that beyond the buy or not decision that we have any real say in whatever policy they have picked.

As there is no annual fee of any sort, no subscription payment, there is no compulsion to spend any money to keep a Flex-6000 going. The premise of this thread comes from a misstatement.

As for what exchange rate, what taxes and final costs either a radio or an upgrade costs, FRS has been pretty transparent and fair in not letting costs of individual circumstances be spread among all buyers. If getting your radio in country-x requires a local dealer, local taxes, transport costs, special certification and other added business/transaction costs you need to pay those. It is marketplace socialism to expect those costs to be equalized by building them into everyone else’s purchases.

As most of us posting here have a Flex-6000 and some several units, their program is working well enough that we have bought in. Makes the drama-queen grinding kind of pointless?

73

Steve
K9ZW
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Ken Hansen

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KC2QMA_John - please, no politics, this is an international community.
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KC2QMA_John

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Please read all prior comments from other users before commenting.

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EA4AYW

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Hi Tim.
First of all, no, I'm not offended by the exchange of opinions either.
which are very free to do.
I honestly would tell you to change the procedure.

instead of charging $ 200 each year or every 2 years as it seems to be, what I would propose is a subscription as if it were to a magazine.
and obviously more economical for the user.
Surely flex would have more users.
or in another way, instead of their radios costing what they cost.
I would lower the amount of said radios at much more affordable prices and then if I charge $ 200 for the software.

What I do not see viable is that the radios do not come down in price.
and that the software costs what it costs.

and I do not say that you do not have to invest the software, because to the tests I am sending you that without the software, the flex stations could not work as they are now.

But make it a little easier for people to have these fantastic radios without having to go bankrupt.

since the market of the flex is not that of the radio amateurs if not the military one.
so that it is the government that pays and the one that subsidizes.
and not our pockets.
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KC2QMA_John

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1.There are NO annual software fees.

2.You can upgrade at any time and even skip over versions and still only pay $199 usd.

3. As Mark said “If you don’t like your Flex radio sell it and buy something you think you will like better”

4. With a Flexradio the radio just keeps getting better. In fact if you own one of the older radio that run PowerSDR the software is still getting update years after the radios have been discontinued. You cant say that about any of the traditional radios. Even the Icom IC7300 will only get a few Bug fixes/Updates and then that's it.

I believe $199 is a very fair price to pay for State Of The Art software that continues to be developed and improved.

Because the title of the this thread is not accurate as there are NO annual costs, I vote to close this thread.

(Edited)
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KC2QMA_John

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When V3 comes out I will wait for feedback from other users and if it looks like it has features that interest me I will upgrade, If not I may just wait for V4, Then I get all the items from V3 and still only have to pay $199 for V4. So to me this sounds very fair.

As far as Taxes go, That is imposed by each country's government so you can not blame FlexRadio for that.

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KC2QMA_John

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FRS will gauge it’s software development based on customer demand.

So what does that mean, It means if a large amount of people upgrade to V3 then they will know that they are delivering what the customer wants and are on the correct path.


Now on the other hand if they see a poor or unenthusiastic response to V3 FRS will know that they have to deliver more of what the customer wants in future versions to get more users to upgrade their software.

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Lance Rasmussen

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I've lost count the number of times I've bought software products and if the upgrades came out less than a year from purchase, I had to pay. The usual standard is 30 days from new release. And some will go 60 or 90 in a means to promote a free upgrade. So expectations of getting a year is unrealistic.
That being said - I've also purchased software that had an extra fee or was promoted with a software maintenance that accommodated free upgrades and updates up to 1 year after purchase.
Point being - Flex, like all companies, is free to set their policies and pricing as they wish. You dont like - use your pocketbook to let them know and not buy Flex. Otherwise - if you dont want the upgrade, dont buy it. If you do, buy it. YOU have the freedom of choice.
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EA4AYW

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I want to make it clear that I am not blaming Flex for the taxes of each country, because we already know that it has nothing to do with it.

What I mean is that having to pay $ 200 for the software, users do not cost $ 200, if not $ 200 plus taxes.
nothing more.
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EA4AYW

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If this is so, it would seem right to me.
As I have seen the news of the V3, apparently not so necessary to pay for them.
unless you are a season of contests, or have a lot of money.

I particularly the v3, I will not buy it.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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It is too bad that you can't find anything good to say about Flex products. Much of what you said is simply incorrect and misinformed. I wish I had the energy to correct them one by one but there are to many of them.

You mentioned your interested in Sun SDR? I just checked them out,,wow $6.999.00 US for the cheap one, and that's much more here in Canada. Another 35% And you think Flex is expensive?
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EA4AYW

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Hi.
If I mentioned the sun SDR, it is not necessary to have the top of range, with the lower version is more than enough and its price starts at € 1500 and other includes 144 (VHF) which flex only includes it in version 6700 and if We talk about price this version costs more than the SUN SDR.
and the advantage of sun sdr, is that it does not charge for its updates.
Eye, I do not like sun sdr, I'm flex.
and my policy is against having to pay so much money for the updates.
if you pay 10 updates it is as if you had paid a flex 6400 or a 6300.
you believe that waste is logical.
when the news of the version 3 for the majority does not serve them.
and I repeat this in my hand update or not.
but this is not the case we are dealing with.
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EA4AYW

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I'm sorry to tell you, you're not understanding anything.
nobody is crying for the v3.
what is being discussed is that flex should not charge so much for these versions, when the biggest update that these versions have are bug fixes that originated in older versions.
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EA4AYW

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Strongly agree Lawrence
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Matt (K0KB)

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On what entitled socialist planet is remote access and multi user a bug fix?
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Michael Coslo

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The same one that makes people try to turn every topic into politics. 

Most Respectfully, knock it off - we don't need that sort of BS. Can this thread be closed now? Looks like with it's degeneration, it is pointless.
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Ken - NM9P

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Flex began with a $199/yr maintenance fee and nixed that within the first year in favor of the current system. I seriously doubt they will go back to an annual fee. If I had been on the old plan, I would have paid an additional $800 by now. As it is, I have upgraded one time to V.2 and as an Alpha Tester have paid for V.3-Alpha. ... half of what the old system would have been.

In addition, under the current system, upgrades are totally optional. If you skip one, or two, or more upgrades, the next one only costs $199. No retrograde fees are added.

In my book that is a great deal. Considering the original price of my 6500, it has been well worth the cost.
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Johan / SE3X

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Second that! if Flex would change back to a maintenance fee instead of current system, send me an e-mail .. I will have a 6700 for sale immediately!
(Edited)
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EA4AYW

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What you are proposing is called censorship.
and my friend, that has long since been eradicated.
If you do not like what you read, please do not read it.
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Ken Hansen

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Curious, if I had a R1 license for my radio and skipped R2 of SSDR, if I choose to upgrade to R3 of SSDR, I get all the R2 upgrades as well, right?
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EA4AYW

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Kev
Never better said.


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HCampbell WB4IVF

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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Since the made up worries keep recycling themselves, something that happens in open forums not curated, here is another meme:

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Bill -VA3WTB

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Complaining about a topic going on too long?
Some of you are still posting remarks keeping it alive. As I just did I suppose.

If I had authority, I would have allowed the thread to run it's natural life, answer the question or comment, then close the threat.
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EA4AYW

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live the censorship. Thankfully we live in a country with democracy and not dictatorship.
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FISHULA X

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 All I have to say is, the Flex 6300 has had the best RX then any other radio I have owned including 2 Flex 5000As.  And I have owned many many others I live in a very noisy area .If it was not for the WNB wide band noise blanker, I could not enjoy my hobby. I have been through many options. None of them worked with this crazy power line noise that shoots me an S9 constantly on 75 meters. When I use the WNB at 75 percent, it drops my noise level to S5. I can hear my friends. I think It's worth every penny. I don't think I would still be on HF if it wasn't for WNB. Plus I can take my laptop anyplace in the world and enjoy my hobby.  So in short, as long as Flex can keep that noise away, I am a Flexer for life. Thank you Flex for the best RX on the planet. Just my opinion.
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David Warnberg

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Sorry but your assumption is incorrect... to keep your radio current (updates to the software release that came with the radio) is FREE...

You want enhancements?  More features?  That will cost you 200.00 ONCE for those new features, then free for all updates to that release...

Wash, rinse, repeat... 

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Ken Hansen

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Reminder - this is an older thread, which Was kicked back to life earlier today.

My 6300 is at release 2.5.1 of SSDR - I don't need MultiFlex, yet, so no need to write a check to Flex yet I enjoy updates to the features I bought with SSDR 2.x a year or so ago.
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KF4HR

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The other issue is that the resale value of the radio drops by $200 the minute a new version comes out.

From what I've seen, owners of Flex transceivers that have upgraded to v3.x typically increase their sales price a bit.   

I can't imagine a Subscription Service would go over very well with those who prefer to continue to run an older version of SSDR.  Why force people to pay for something they may not want or need?

You always have to option to skip a couple of SSDR major upgrades, then buy an upgrade and catch up, which results in $100 per upgrade.

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Ken Hansen

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If a Flex owner skipped SSDR 2.X and then bought SSDR 3.X, that SSDR 3X upgrade includes every bit of the SSDR 2.X upgrade.

Such a person would have every option offered by Flex, their radio would be 'current' if/when offered for sale.

Personally, I don't have a need to upgrade to 3.X, I'll more likely than not upgrade to a Flex 6400 before I update the software on my 6300, but that's what best suits my personal operating style and budget.
(Edited)
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FISHULA X

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 I have the best radio I have ever owned, This is my 4th Flex and my first 6000 series. I just don't understand why all the long drawn out Hub Bub?  Flex gives you the option to buy or not to buy. Then they even show release notes so you know exactly what your getting with the update. Remember, Flex is made in the USA. And If you have an issue, you can call them and they actually call you back, unless you are a lid. I am quite sure they get many many phone calls with issues that can be solved by just reading the manual or instructions. The Flex 6000 series is a complex unit and some old timers have issues with technology. It's true and you know it, Now not all do, but lots do. Let be serious. Some questions in these forums are downright head shaking.. 
 And I been inside all of my Flex radios. I clean the fans and give them a general look about.
 All I see is quality. Is this not what we want?? I sure do. I am a very happy Flex owner and any way  you look at it. with Flex and SSDR. It saves you money. You only need one radio, and you can take your Maestro or laptop and use it anyplace you want that has internet. So, we only need one radio at home, I used to need one at my place of business plus another antenna, another power supply. So in my opinion. When Flex has an upgrade and you see that you need it or don't need it simply by reading the release notes, then don''t buy it.   Nobody is forced. And on the used market guys do look for the latest and the greatest. But I have the greatest and I am very happy. This is just my opinion. I love Flex radio and that is that.
(Edited)