Re: HFSignals poor business practices

Ashhar Farhan
 

Not at all, John,
We give and take criticism. The BITX circuit, software as well as the business practices of HF Signals are all 'open source'. Unless we get concrete criticism (good and bad) we wont mend ourselves. As I said before, BITX40 happens to be a neglected child of this group. I am working to soup it up, the documenation as well as mods. I am going to up the shipped  BITX40 software to Allard's, I hope everyone is fine with it.

73, f



On Sun, Jun 2, 2019 at 11:31 PM John Cardoso <ve9pct@...> wrote:

Hi Ashhar
Greetings from Canada, from an eighty-year-old retired electronics/electric professional engineer, hobbyist,  and radio ham.
Let me start by congratulating you,  Ashhar, for your dedication to and for the success of your work. It's great that you have made it available to old and new generations of smart radio enthusiasts. Great work. I mean it. Keep it up.
I was just disappointed by the lack of instructions/info with the kit and its poor presentation - a list of parts on a clearly torn half-sheet of paper, and an invoice; that was all I got.  And, pardon me to differ, also a bit disappointed by the quality of the parts that came with the board. As an Arduino hobbyist/project-builder, when I order stuff from China (through ebay) I expect "minimal" quality but, I confess, I was expecting a little better from HFSignals. I realize that some economic factors are involved, on both sides, that have to be considered.
This is a great group.  I have been following it for a while now. I also admire that you often take part in the discussions. Gives the rest of us the feeling that we are all in this together. Some of the guys here are tops, and I will be coming back for help, guidance, and learning. (Yes, old dogs can learn new tricks.)
I am not one to start or enjoy debates online. I did not want to start one. If I had given careful thought to my post, I probably wouldn't have done it. (BTW Ashhar you have some loyal and though supporters here. Ouch!)
My apologies if I hurt some sensitivities.  And my thanks to those who understood my main idea and took the time to write.
This will be my last post on this subject. Cheers to all. You are all doing great work!
73's

On 6/2/2019 2:37 AM, Ashhar Farhan wrote:
John,

You are refering to the BITX40 kit, rather than the uBITX. I entirely accept that the presentation could be better. I am working on updating the BITX40 documentation and it should be through in a week.
However, on quality, I have to be a little defensive. 
First, we use high grade components through out. Our toroids are from micrometals our encoders are original Bourn.
You mentioned the 'crappy' tiny ptt button and mic. Considering that our goal was to ship an entire SSB transceiver for well under the price of a standard radio mic, instead of not shipping any mic at all, chose to ship a very fine electret mic. It is a Panasonic that forms the main element. It has had very good on-air reviews.
The small ptt microswitch is what many mics have inside them. Just like there is no casing for the transceiver, there is no casing for the mic either.
All inductors are measured before they get on the PCB, crystals are matched. After assembly, each board is tested and signed.
As for the firmware, it ships with the latest version. If you would like more features, you can try this https://github.com/amunters/bitx40, it is a great piece of software engineering by a very talented ham.
If there are any specific places you get stuck, do ask on this group. We are an open community, open to self correction.

-f

PS the 0.1 uf is a spare to help you eliminate RFI. Depending upon how you wire up the BITX 40 and into what kind of enclosure, you may need to solder it across a control or not.

On Sun 2 Jun, 2019, 9:02 AM Arv Evans, <arvid.evans@...> wrote:
Ken, and others

John and myself have discussed this off-net.  Turns out that I may have miss-interpreted
his post.  He is well qualified and experienced.  He just posted some thoughts that
probably we have all had from time to time.  I probably over-reacted a bit. 

Arv  K7HKL
_._

On Sat, Jun 1, 2019 at 7:41 PM Ken Hansen <ken@...> wrote:
I'm curious on out the research you undertook before purchasing a Bitx40 that lead you to expect anything other than what you got.

Everything not on the PCB is really included for two reasons:

1) to enable someone without access to a well-stocked 'junk box' to complete the radio, and
2) minimize postage

I'm not sure what I'd change at HFSignals, except maybe include a somewhat more informative 'getting started' document, but it would have to be multi-lingual, since the market is truly world-wide.

Ken, N2VIP

On Jun 1, 2019, at 2:26 PM, John Cardoso <ve9pct@...> wrote:

I have been wishing to order a Bitx40 for a while now. Meanwhile, I have been reading the posters of this group from time to time. I kept reading about the problems people were having with the radios but, I think, I had to experience it myself.
Maybe I am just a sucker for punishment. But I did not expect the experience to be this bad.
The order was delivered on time. So far so good. The packaging was well done and strong as if it was expected to go through hell and come out unscathed.
The surprises came after - The quality of the components can't be any worse - very cheap and poor quality pots, a tiny push button for PTT (are you kidding me?), a lousy mic and a 0.1 uF capacitor that I still have no idea where it will go.
There were no instructions of any sort. Not even a link to a website where they could be found. One half-page of an 8X11 sheet of paper with a list of the contents (probably to save on expenses), and an invoice, was all that came with the parts. No even a mention on the version of the board and/or  software. What version is it being sold now, anyway?
The whole thing is crappy. Is this the way they do business in India or is it just a company that doesn't know how to do it?
This post will probably have some replies telling me that I should have known better. Maybe. For hackers they say?

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