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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:06 AM
buyer of the farm
United States, FL, DeLand
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Originally Posted by MattyB View Post
Maybe, but my point is that the "system" is already broken for the major manufacturers if their premium $800-$1500 radio has the same or less functionality as a $50-200 open source based TX. I'm sure you will rightly say those OS TXs don't have the same physical quality (gimbals etc) or usability as the premium brands yet. However, it's clear from the information coming out every day on the Turnigy and particularly the FrSky radios that their creators are serious about addressing these points and upsetting the status quo in the medium term.
Yes, they seem to have adopted the open-source strategy and opened up a whole new hobby within a hobby there and that can't be anything but great. Most RC hobbyists aren't willing to get in there and be responsible for all that software stuff--they just want it to work. And that will work fine until the open source guys come up with something really killer that you can't do with commercial radios.

Then you might see the "premium" radio companies letting the open source guys have access to some software features. It all depends on what kind of quality comes out of a bunch of enthusiasts working for free and the market penetration open source friendly radios achieve.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:54 AM
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United Kingdom, England, Hitchin
Joined Jan 2004
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...and now we totally agree!. I personally think the big challenge for the manufacturers using OS will not be the hardware (which can be easily sorted for only a small increase in prce), but usability - the likes of ER9X is super capable and flexible, but it's not very intuitive for those coming from a mainstream radio. I suspect the way they'll get around this in the end are dual GUIs, one offering all the flexibility, and one that easier to use but with less functionality.

Sorry, I have pulled this way OT now I know - shutting up...
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 04:14 PM
buyer of the farm
United States, FL, DeLand
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Originally Posted by jasmine2501 View Post
Depends on who you ask... I personally don't trust Open Source stuff. I know the guys who do the embedded stuff for spacecraft here - they are not the same guys who are doing the open source stuff. There is a difference in caliber, and in my opinion, it's significant. I would simply not trust my aircraft to embedded software written by "guys on the internet"
Jasmine, much of the software that we take as absolute go-to software comes from the open source community--much of it from Linux: Libre Office, Open Office, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome (in the Chromium flavor), Thunderbird, Pidgin instant messaging, DD-WRT for routers, GIMP (alternative to PhotoShop), VLC media player, 7-zip file compression, gparted hard drive partitioning and formatting, InfraRecorder, Audacity (!), the list goes ten times longer of open source software as good or better than any commercial alternative. You want security? Truecrypt, open source of course, is the most reliable and secure cryptography for your computer. I'll put my money (none!!) on open source VirtualBox for a virtual machine before the commercial VMWare or any others I've used.

Open source is ready, willing and more than able to take over if Microsloth and Apple continue their crusades to abolish power users and reduce desktops and laptops to the capability of a cell phone. Nobody needs to pay for computer software any more unless they want to play games. A misstep by Microsloth and/or Apple could be fatal to the company because, for the first time ever, alternatives are available that are so good that the dead company wouldn't even be missed.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 04:47 PM
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I've been a computer programmer for 25 years. I know what I'm capable of and what I'm not. I'm not capable of writing embedded software. I'm also quite aware of what the open source community has given us. I wouldn't trust Firefox to run my airplane. OR Linux for that matter. But when I open a browser, I open Chrome, and when I need a document, I tend to use OpenOffice... but those applications, if they fail, aren't going to cause property damage or any significant interruption to my life. Those low-risk applications are fine to have a lower quality level.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 06:03 PM
buyer of the farm
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By that same token, if I had the choice of using Windows (any version) or Linux to run my airplane, it would be Linux every time. It's much more stable and reliable, even than Apple OSX, which shares much of the same core as Linux.

So far it seems that the routines programmed for the open source radios have been stout and dependable. Of course it's not as complicated as what you work with.

I'm perfectly willing to wait and see. I'm not dissatisfied at all with my Spektrum equipment, even though its DSM2 I've never had a hiccup. I wouldn't have a problem at all flying at a normal flying field. With a couple hundred at a major meet, I wouldn't use it, even though I'd have to have pretty bad luck to have a problem.

It will come down to some things being open for tinkering and some things not, I'm sure. I hope the major companies will be very careful of their reputations.

And, as you are well aware, Jasmine, there's the issue of "what's programming?" If you're writing Visual Basic Routines for execution inside Excel, are you programming or using the application? It's all a language game, and some say the only programming is basic machine language instructions and everything higher level is just using an application. I haven't looked at what they're using in the FrSky/Turnigy radios to see what exactly the "programmers" are using. If they're wearing protection, using an application built into the hardware, it's possible what they are doing is sufficiently constrained to avoid cataclysmic screwups.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 05:45 AM
If it flies.....I can crash it
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Went to my local hobby shop yesterday and after 10 mins of ripping the piss out of HH for the Dx18QQ the bloke behind the counter announced how he ordered his that morning and is the first in the UK to order.........I laughed so hard.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 05:56 AM
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Originally Posted by blackbrabus View Post
Went to my local hobby shop yesterday and after 10 mins of ripping the piss out of HH for the Dx18QQ the bloke behind the counter announced how he ordered his that morning and is the first in the UK to order.........I laughed so hard.
Some folks want to be "unique" I guess, or at least buy gear that makes them think that. It seems to be a status symbol which is what HH was hoping for. Some people buy into marketing hype, so companies will continue to do so.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 07:15 AM
buyer of the farm
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Now a hobby shop owner might actually be able to justify the purchase as an enhancement to his business. Many times businesses have on display items of unusual value for the interest of their customers. I knew a kite shop that actually displayed a cell from one of Alexander Graham Bell's tetrahedral kites. I'm sure it cost him plenty. He wouldn't sell it because it was to valuable to the shop to have a kite-related item of such historical interest.

This would be like a car dealership displaying an Edsel in its showroom. It's a draw to get people in the store. In this case, if anyone expressed an interest in buying one, they could actually replace it.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 09:44 PM
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United States, IN, Milan
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I saw one today. The national chain manager said it was ordered by the owner. Even the guys thought it was a complete joke, since they have a regular dx12 in the case that wont sell.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 10:35 PM
I'm Addicted Already
Charlotte, NC
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I have a question that I really do not know the answer to. Who flies an airplane that has 18 channels? Or am I missing something?
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 11:06 PM
Wake up, feel pulse, be happy!
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I have a question that I really do not know the answer to. Who flies an airplane that has 18 channels? Or am I missing something?
Virtually nobody actually needs all eighteen channels. Maybe some of the insanely detailed scale turbine ships and such can use them all, but I suspect there are less than 2000 pilots in the world who even fly those at all.

The main reasons to have such a "big" radio are things like additional radio functionality, e.g. mixing and programming features, that you don't find in lower classes of transmitter. You also might not use every channel independently, but rather have several mixed together and controlled/activated by one switch.

Personally, after seeing what Multiplex's EVO transmitters can do, it's extremely difficult to be impressed with anything that's come from the more popular Asian-made brands (Spek/Fub/Hitec and the gang).
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 11:57 PM
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United States, TX, Houston
Joined Nov 2003
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Originally Posted by C₄H₁₀ View Post
Personally, after seeing what Multiplex's EVO transmitters can do, it's extremely difficult to be impressed with anything that's come from the more popular Asian-made brands (Spek/Fub/Hitec and the gang).
Are not Hitec and Multiplex the same company now?

I've heard nothing but good things about the EVOs. If I were to spend $1200 on a radio, I would be more interested in Jeti DS-16 than the DX18QQ.

Spektrum is a great value brand, but I don't think I will buy another of their radios.
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 12:22 AM
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United States, NY, New Paltz
Joined May 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JIMBOJONES View Post
I saw one today. The national chain manager said it was ordered by the owner. Even the guys thought it was a complete joke, since they have a regular dx12 in the case that wont sell.
I love the regular dx12, it's my favorite radio. Lulz
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 04:15 AM
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Canada, NS, Halifax
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Originally Posted by NCRealEstateGuy View Post
I have a question that I really do not know the answer to. Who flies an airplane that has 18 channels? Or am I missing something?
It is more about the features than the channels really, and since the features trickle down slowly if at all you have to buy a radio with more channels.

In terms of needing more channels, multicopters with multiple flight modes, gain adjustments, and gimbals can eat up channels fast as one example.
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 11:00 AM
Rocket Programmer
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United States, AZ, Mesa
Joined Jul 2007
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Originally Posted by NCRealEstateGuy View Post
I have a question that I really do not know the answer to. Who flies an airplane that has 18 channels? Or am I missing something?
Giant scale folks - the kind of folks to whom a $2000 radio is pocket change.

6 Aileron Servos
2 Elevator servos
2 Rudder servos
3 Retracts
1 Throttle
2 Flaps
1 Lights
1 Pilot/Nose Wheel

I get to see a setup like that every year at our winter modeling expo. The guy says it takes two pilots, two radios to fly it - I have no idea what that means. There are other reasonable configurations of 18 servos I can think of too.
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