Sunday, May 8, 2016

Newton's Guide to Technical Excellence. Post #769.

Newton's Guide to Technical Excellence.
(http://www.eham.net/articles/36164).
Accessed on 09 May 2016, 03:34 hrs, UTC.
Author:  Howard Walker (KI4VEO).

This somewhat "tongue in cheek" look at the pitfalls of buying ham radio equipment is "spot on."  Just reading some of Howard's cautionary notes and observations makes me remember some dubious radio purchases made in years past.  I found items 1 through 5 and 8 through 11 most common from my experience.  Please note some of the incisive comments from other radio amateurs at the end of Howard's article.  This well-done analysis of the radio buying act reads like a guide to "Murphy's Law".  I suppose all of us have fallen to at least one of the "truths" in this article.

What I can never figure out is why a reputable radio manufacturer, such as ICOM, discontinues a decent rig like the IC-7200 after a short run, and opts for new designs with numerous flaws.  What comes to mind is the brilliant but seriously flawed ICOM-746.  Of course, there are exceptions.  ICOM is still producing the ICOM-718, which is a sturdy, dependable, and affordable HF transceiver--perfect for the newly licensed ham or for a standby rig in a ham shack. Another great ICOM rig is the ICOM-703, perfect for the QRP enthusiast. That rig is no longer is production.  I suppose the point of all this is to prepare for planned obsolescence, whether it be ham equipment, cars, computers, or anything else. We have to keep the factories running and people employed.  This dismal scenario will probably change once SDRs become more popular and updates are simply a matter of downloading software.  But, for now, I'm content to use my almost classic rigs--Kenwood 520s, Yaesu FT-7, Swan-100MX, Ten-Tec Scout.  My one concession to progress is a fairly new Elecraft KX3.

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Thanks for joining us today!  Aloha es 73 de Russ (KH6JRM).