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[TenTec] Newbie Orion questions

To: Discussion Ten-Tec Equipment of <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: [TenTec] Newbie Orion questions
From: Randy K7RAN <k7randy@gmail.com>
Reply-to: Discussion of Ten-Tec Equipment <tentec@contesting.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Feb 2006 23:29:10 -0700
List-post: <mailto:tentec@contesting.com>
I'm absolutely sure I'm going to sound like a moron, so I may as well  
admit the fact of my moronity right off the bat. I'm a moron with a  
smart radio. I just took delivery of a new Orion 2 today. Those whose  
patience is easily tested should tune out now. But for those who are  
willing to work with a newbie, I'm very grateful. I've been running  
an old Kenwood TS690S (the 6 meter version of the old 450), so I hope  
everyone will forgive my initial trepidation with the Orion. Then  
again, I well remember how intimidating the 690 was when I stepped up  
from an ancient Heathkit HW101. In any event, here are a few  
questions regardless:

1) The VFO knobs don't spin... In other words, they're really tight!  
I like a little bit of spin... The manual doesn't say how to adjust  
them (or at least I couldn't find it as I flipped through the pages a  
few times), and they don't appear to adjust the way my old Kenwood's  
knob does, i.e., by holding the knob skirt stationary and turning the  
knob to adjust. Am I missing something -- like brain cells? Am I just  
so afraid of damaging the rig that I didn't dare hold the skirt tight  
enough to adjust it? Or is it something else? Enough about the knob. :-)

2) I pressed "TUNE" and the word "TUNE" appears on the display and an  
SWR appears on the display as 3.2 to 1 and never changes. I waited 20  
seconds (the manual says it can take 20 seconds), and then nothing. I  
rechecked my receipt and, yes, sure enough I paid for a unit "with  
tuner"... I checked the manual and it says the tuner on/off default  
is "on"... I switch over to 15 meters, and press "TUNE" and the  
display doesn't show an SWR but instead just says "high"... I collect  
my cojones and let it stay on "TUNE" for a half minute and nothing  
changes. I have a sinking feeling that I've failed an IQ test.

3) I like a bit of treble to my sound more than bass. I realize I'm  
lost. With my trusty but lame-eared Kenwood 690, I use an outboard  
ClearSpeech speaker with a "tone" knob and then plug the headphones  
into that. But I don't want to use that speaker with the Orion  
because I might want to use the Binaural audio feature. Is there a  
way to adjust the overall treble/bass-ness? I promise I won't get my  
feelings hurt if someone says, "Randy, treble and bass are for  
sissies and broadcast radios, so return your Extra ticket to the FCC  
posthaste." I can handle the truth. But I still just want to know if  
I can adjust the tone, hi.

4) With my ClearSpeech speaker, the heterodyne killer waits a second  
to determine that it's not going to kill a CW signal. For that  
reason, it's great on CW. A dead carrier gets squelched after a  
second while the underlying CW sigs continue unabated. With the  
Orion, I fiddled with a few things but couldn't figure out how to  
adjust things to duplicate the functionality I just described. I  
realize I've hardly begun to scale the learning curve, but is there  
an easy way to comprehend this more quickly? (If my question is  
incomprehensible, please forgive me.)

I know I'm going to have more questions over the next week or two as  
I settle in with this fantastic piece of equipment. I just hope they  
don't throw me off the list for asking dumb questions. I'm going to  
sit down and watch the instructional DVD again before posting more  
stuff like this. Anyone who read this whole message down to here is a  
superhero -- thank you.

Randy K7RAN

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