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FlexRadio Software Defined Radio

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by W5MBB, Aug 18, 2009.

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  1. W5MBB

    W5MBB Ham Member QRZ Page

    I finding myself needing some new radio gear and I was looking at the FlexRadio and was wondering whats the benifit of running a software defined radio compaired to a traditional rig. Has anyone use these radios and find any better preformance or any noticable reason other than the coolness factor to spend that much money on a sdr? I myself have never used one and am consedering a ICOM rig.
     
  2. NS8N

    NS8N Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have no experience with one. But just wanted to say that I too have a hard time justifying the cost. On the upside I have heard many good things about their performance as an all around transceiver. There are so many rigs out there that can be operated via software AND knobs though...

    //2 cents
     
  3. WB3FTQ

    WB3FTQ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    i have had my Flex 5000A since mid-May and i love it...my 756 PRO III is now my backup rig because of it. since 80% of the radio IS the computer and since it is open source code every time the programmers come up with something new it is very easy to upgrade; get on the Flex download site and do it. the only drawback is that older computers have a hard time supporting it. i have a dual-core intel processor running at >2GHz with 2MB memory running Windows XP Pro, standard video card, and a standalone Firewire driver card and i had my radio up and running within a half an hour of taking it out of the box. go to the Flex website, download PowerSDR then go to WA5QPZ's website and download the IQ files. the software thinks the IQ files are radio hardware therefore you can get your system set up and runnoing and you can actually "tune" across the files just as if you had a radio hooked to it. depending on how you set it up you can get some very tight filters with almost vertical skirts and they don't "ring". the only drawback is that since the computer is so much a part of the radio it can be a bit of a chore to get the radio and the computer playing together. i would NOT recommend using VISTA. have fun, i think you will like it. oh, nad they also have an extensive help base with forums and a "Knowledge base" or you can talk directly to them. excellent company and as a plus the radios are made in Austin TX.
     
  4. WB3FTQ

    WB3FTQ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    true, but whenever they come out with an improvement it usually means something in the hardware must be changed. try it; after a while you get used to being able to use the mouse to tune on a signal. you can see as much as 196kHz of any given band and all you do is click on a signal and you're there. Kenwood, Yaseu, etc are mostly software-controlled radios but the Flex is a true software-defined radio. BTW, i do NOT work for Flex.
     
  5. NS8N

    NS8N Ham Member QRZ Page

    Ah don't get me wrong. The appeal is there. I even see that one can purchase an add-on hardware knob that attaches via USB cable, pretty cool! Still, if they came down on the costs, I may look into it more.
     
  6. K1OIK

    K1OIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Look at my Flex videos

    Flex FDR
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pI4KRIMDb0Q

    Flex
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZnidaUi2L_8

    Flex Jan 09
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JCOR_lbTzI

    Flex VAC
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4FsuLidTwA
     
  7. WB3FTQ

    WB3FTQ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    not sure how much you wnt to spend but they do have the Flex 3000 and i think they have, or may be bringing out, a Flex 1500? i got the 5000A with the second receiver installed. i paid about $2400 i think for the PRO III brand new in '06 and the 5000 cost about $3100. had i not gotten the second receiver the cost would have been a lot closer to the PRO III. the Flex runs rings around my PRO III.
     
  8. KB9BVN

    KB9BVN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I heard rumors that Flex was going to have a QRP rig soon. There is a guy in Australia that has a 40m SDR rig called the Genesis 40. It is sold as a kit and you can use the PowerSDR software with it.
     
  9. AG3Y

    AG3Y Guest

    If you want to try the "touch and feel" aspect of SDRs, you can always get a "softrock" radio, and run it off of Power SDR, or Rocky software.

    The ability to narrow down the bandpass to a single station is incredible ! If another station is out of the bandpass, you just DON'T HEAR IT! That simple!

    I would purchase a Flex radio in a heartbeat, if I had the money to do so!
     
  10. KI4WCQ

    KI4WCQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I would like to have the Flex 3000. Since it doens't look anything like a rig, the XYL wouldn't complain about "having another radio". She would probably think it's some sort of control box.:D
     
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