Flex-6700 Fantasies – “Dreaming What Might Be!” Series – Slices Impact 2 - September - 2012Posted by k9zw in Amateur Radio, Flex-6000, K9ZW, K9ZW Just Rambled.
Tags: Flex-6000, Flex-Radio, K5GJ, K9ZW, K9ZW Just Rambled, PowerSDR, SmartSDR, W9DXCC
What will the Flex-6000 “Slice” architecture bring?
Think of a Slice as portion of the bandpass received and a portion of the Flex-6000’s processing power.
The Flex-6500 will offer four Slices and the Flex-6700/6700R offer eight Slices.
Slices can be configured a lot of different ways – stacked to give a wide bandpass or targeted to monitor select portions of various bands.
The Slice architecture will allow flexibility that hasn’t been available before in amateur radio by:
- Slices will act like SO2R by monitoring many bands/segments at the same time for contesters. Four receivers or Eight Receivers all in one box!
- Slices will be traded – you want to hear something off my Flex? Well I’ll trade you a Slice from my station for a Slice from yours.
- There will be a market for open Slices. You only need two and have Eight? Why not rent them out to those who want to use them?
- A Stack of Slices from the GPSDO equipped Flex-6700 versions could be combined for wide-area diversity reception. Using the timing stamps several remote Slices would be processed together.
- Slice Trading will further challenge the DXCC/IOTA/SOTA type programs. Where was the receive antenna and was it the same one used to transmit when you worked that rare DX? Is it a DX QSO if you listen from Europe while transmitting from The States?
- Stacks of Slices will change OO (Official Observer) programs, perhaps even allowing massive recording projects documenting issues that otherwise were hard to prove? (Like sure you were really running 100 watts when you tilt the meter when recorded by Slices around the world all part of an OO project.)
- Multi-Band Digital Modes become possible with Slices. Where legal to do Spread Spectrum transmissions the ability to use a very little bit of several bands, or build redundancy/error correction into parallel fast sequenced bands will be easier.
- Slices can operate a bit like your own DX-Cluster. Monitoring and Alerting software for Slices (whether on one machine or a Stack of Slices) will be developed.
- The use of Slices with specialized software will blur the boundary between non-assisted and assisted in Contesting. If you have your own beacon monitoring and bandpass monitoring software system running on Eight or more Slices, even if all local to you, is that Unassisted or Assisted?
I’ll dig deeper into the possibilities of trading/buying/borrowing Flex-6000 slices in a later post.
First post of this series Flex-6700 Fantasies – “Dreaming What Might Be!” Series
Planning in a few weeks to have another first hand look at the Flex-Radio Flex-6000 series radios at the W9DXCC Convention in Illinois.
……one can imagine, dream and scheme can’t one?
Reading the Flex-Radio literature, Insider newsletters and reflectors there is one massive amount of promise to this new radio an architecture!
I’d like to touch on a few items that have caught my eye, and what I imagine they might offer for the future of amateur radio.
Be absolutely certain I am speculating, I have no extra insight or sources (nor would I betray information given to me in confidence) and I am doing analysis based on what it out there. I’m going to have fun speculating what might be.
Putting some guesses and construction to the pieces of information over the next few weeks, we’ll see if I guess right on anything announced at the W9DXCC or later when radios ship.
I’ll try to get a thought out every few days in the lead-up to the W9DXCC Convention and then an assessment in the week or so directly after the event.
I’ll link them to this “Flex-6700 Fantasies – “Dreaming What Might Be!” Series” starter and again in the wrap up.