[chirp_users] chirp_users Digest, Vol 111, Issue 14
kl7bsc at gmail.com
Thu Mar 22 14:28:42 PDT 2018
> I couldn't agree more with your observations Chris. The state of
programming in ham radio is embarrassing at best, I would bet that everyone
on this board knows someone who started in radio, got a handheld, and then
left the Hobby and discussed because they could not get it programmed. That
kind of thing is not at all uncommon and goes beyond embarrassing to the
point of being harmful to the Hobby.
The problem in radio right now is that every manufacture insists on being
an island and not working together. System Fusion, d-star, p25, and so
forth. These are all great modes that have their place but where is the
manufacturer willing to put their pride down and openly allow licensing to
everybody to use "their" mode? And everyone wonders why digital voice never
The programming situation is even worse. The only radio I have owned which
uses a standard USB cable is a Kenwood aprs HT. Not exactly an entry-level
radio. And in the complexities of software, and it becomes a nightmare.
Radios needs to behave like phones, plug them into the computer with a USB
cable and then simply drag and drop your CSV file into the right folder for
the radio to read it. Not exactly state-of-the-art technology these days,
yet ham radio manufacturers are still reliving the 80s. How many of those
new hands who quit the hobby would still be hands if they could program as
easily as they could save photos on their cell phone?
> I've said it before and I'll say it again. The whole concept of
> programmable devices that can be programmed to destruction by interfering
> with the 'wrong' memory is flawed from the start and I don't understand why
> people buy them. The whole concept of programmable devices that require the
> use of non-standard cables which in turn require the use of out-of-date
> drivers on the programming device is ridiculous. Why these radios have
> gained such a following is beyond me. Why most of them have not been
> returned for refunds the minute they exhibit the faults that I have read
> about on here time and time again is also beyond me. Whatever happened to
> Plug And Play?
> As an example, even the cheapest printer has more complex user-selectable
> parameters available than most of the programmable radios. Printers come
> with drivers that work, with user-friendly user-interfaces that only allow
> the programming of whatever is sensibly programmable, and with hardware
> interfaces that are connected to the programming device via standard cables
> available from the average supermarket down the road. When I bought my UV5R
> it came with a programming cable that didn't work, and an incomprehensible
> CD full of software that is mostly useless. When I finally got something to
> work the user-interface to the spread-sheet lookalike was at best clunky -
> I would describe it as awful. There were no instructions to speak of and no
> support from the suppliers.
> When I add up the hours I have spent and apply a reasonable hourly rate it
> becomes obvious that these radios are not cheap at all.
> I recently read somewhere that recent handhelds from at least one of the
> big three suffers from the same problems. That's it then - the end of
> amateur radio is nigh. My one regret is that me and my UV5R have
> contributed to that because I did not return it for a refund.
> (The UV5R is not a particularly good radio anyway. The colour display uses
> far too much power and cannot cope with bright sunlight. Mono displays are
> generally far better in both respects, and who really needs colour?)
> 73, Chris, an Amateur Radio operator since 1973.
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