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[TenTec] Fw : Orion first impressions

To: <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: [TenTec] Fw : Orion first impressions
From: sales@tentec.com (Ten-Tec Inc. Amateur Radio Sales)
Date: Wed Apr 9 09:50:10 2003

Read this post - I think that the number of users of the Orion that
are present here will certainly contend that there are not "dozens of bugs"
present as part of the radio.

We have to make choices about ergonomics, and all the below issues pointed
out about ergonomics and how the radio-to-operator interfacing works are
all matters of personal preference, not deficiencies as part of the radio.

See comment at below after the list:

 > K2WS wrote:
 >After using the Orion for a week, these are some of my impressions. 
Finding dozens of software >bugs in a $3300+ radio was quite unsettling to 
me, gentlemen.  I had a bigger emotional investment in >this thing - then I 
care to admit!

> >I wish to address two design problem areas, VFO  control and Mode 
> switching on the Orion   Most  >of the high end radios today (TS-870/950, 
> IC-746Pro / 756ProII / 781, FT1000 series) all have VFO >tuning rates in 
> this range:

> > Furthermore, when switching to larger step sizes, no rounding of the 
> frequency takes place, which >is more than irritating.If for example, the 
> frequency is  14.177.049  while in 1 Hz step size and we  >want to go to 
> 14.178.000,  switching STEP to 1 KHz  yields a frequency  of 14.178.049 
> when the >VFO is tuned higher.  All digits smaller then the current step 
> size must to zeroed manually. >Keyboard entry of part of the frequency is 
> not supported.
> >Instead of  changing  the VFO step size via the menu as the Orion 
> currently does, I propose the >following changes:
> >   Another problem is mode switching on the Orion.  Either have 
> dedicated pushbuttons for >USB/LSB, UCW/LCW,  UFSK/LFSK  and AM/FM  that's 
> four
> >Buttons OR when the "Mode" button is pressed the mode menu STAYS ON 
> until the
> >"Mode" button is pressed AGAIN.  Then, we can switch from upper to lower 
> while  listening and so >forth.  Mode switching is too important to be 
> hidden in the menu.

> > Other bugs----
> > There are glitches in the operation/display of certain controls.
> >Thecontrol/display interaction is often inconsistent, too fast or slow, 
> some rotating controls have no >minimum or maximum limits.  For example,
>  >1. the PBT knob can be turned, turned, turned until the passband window 
> falls off either end of the >display and the "PBT: -nnnnnnn" readout 
> grows non-sensible.
>  >2. The H-CUT knob is identical in function to the BW knob in USB. The 
> L-CUT knob is identical >in function to the BW knob in LSB. The CUT control
> >Should not allow widening of the original passband, only cutting it.
> >3. The NR function readout is flaky when Multi is turned too far.
> >4. Monitor level is not loud enough - even when set to 100.
> >5. Panel legend for headphones, key and ALC are invisible in low light.
> > There are other software problems too eg.,
> >1. the slow update rate of the Bandscope, compared to Icom's 756Pro's 
> bandscope.
> >2. the chunky, crude display below +/-  18kHz scan idth on the Bandscope
> >3. The Analog S-meter occasionally pins for no
>      apparent cause.
>  >4 the USER profile load/store function takes more
>     than 15 seconds to work, should be instantaneous!
> >5. the USER1 and USER2 buttons should be in the Menu,
>      if accidentally pressed, the radio locks up for 15
>      seconds.

Other than the report of the NR control continuing to scroll numbers if
turned past the end of its limits, none of these are bugs in the radio;
these are all choices we made as part of the design process.   I don't
see any changes being made on any of the above commentary.

Thanks for the feedback - as always, any input is useful.

Scott Robbins

Ten-Tec, Inc., 1185 Dolly Parton Pkwy, Sevierville, TN 37862 USA
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