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Re: [CQ-Contest] Lost leading 'dit' - summary

To: cq-contest@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] Lost leading 'dit' - summary
From: VR2BrettGraham <vr2bg@harts.org.hk>
Date: Fri, 05 Mar 2004 01:45:28 +0000
List-post: <mailto:cq-contest@contesting.com>
W4ZV replied to N2MG on the subject of quality, processes, etc:

The contrast of Elecraft and Ten-Tec versus Yaesu is very striking, and quite
surprising given Japan's almost religious fervor about quality.

Sometimes our perception of Japan & quality is, well, a bit off.

At AMPEX, we looked bad compared to SONY because their b'cast kit
worked straight out of the box.  A few thousand hours later, however, loose
one head on the scanner & with SONY that is the whole upper drum, instead
of one video head on a professional VTR where parts are priced accordingly.
Here in HK, it wasn't too long ago that an old 2-inch AMPEX cart machine was
still putting ads to air - show me a SONY anything that has lasted that long.

Look at cars - again, great when new, but how many of the Japanese products
really last? Some can, but the body won't last long enough - for most, there
is always some shortcoming. In the Japan, there is essentially nothing like
a four-year-or-older car as they get rid of them as the gov't taxes them off the
road for fear they're unsafe (they go so nuts in repairing crashed cars that
crashed cars never get repaired). Same products get sold to export markets -
maybe with stronger bumpers, more emission controls, but the platform is the
same & is meant to be thrown away.

Feel those knobs & switches on the typical Japanese rig.  Pleasing colors,
modern appearance.  What sells is the equivalent of wing mirrors that drive
themselves back into position when they get whacked in tight maneuvering
or retract at the push of a button when parking in a narrow alley somewhere
in Roppongi.  There isn't much substance to it, but it sure seems slick.

Imagine all the MPs in the greater Tokyo area - spewing forth with phase
noise & clicks, with receivers wilting even without the noise blanker engaged.
How can that level of quality be accepted as Bill asks?

Running around there once whilst chasing microwave QRM, I was impressed
when a lady gave a GM-land colleague a right bollocking for lighting up a
cigarette on an outside platform at a train station.  It was outside, but a
non-smoking platform.  It wasn't peak time or anything like that.  I was very
impressed how she broke out of the homogenous, conformist mold & put him
in his place.

On that trip, I was dealing with guys pointing satellite dishes being paid far more
than me & they couldn't work an adjustable spanner or use a spectrum analyzer
if their lives depended on it. The amount of obliviousness on basic stuff was just
amazing as I dealt with companies that are domestic leaders in their fields.

Mix all that random rubbish together & why our Japanese radios work the
way they do makes a bit of sense to me & is unlikely to change. A big part of
the problem is feedback, the lack of it, or any interest in doing something based
on it - all of which the likes of Ten-Tec & Elecraft aren't suffering from.

73, VR2BrettGraham

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