News

Bryan’s Talk at MHDC 2018

At 6:20 on the timeline.

XC-3006

XC-3006 Redux

We were hopeful to have the Kickstarter produce enough response to deliver the XC-3006 at a bit of a discount to enable delivery at a favorable price point.  Our target was 50 units, or the equivalent in support pledges, but we fell short.

However, we were encouraged by the 29 individual pledges that wanted to obtain the XC-3006 and have had some folks ask if there is another way to get the production done.

We have had the house elves running over the numbers and we can do a run if we get at least 25 firm, pre-paid orders, by February 15th.  If you place a firm, pre-paid order, and we do not meet the minimum of 25 orders, we will refund your order.

If this minimum order quantity is met by February 15th, then we anticipate shipment by mid-April — baring any unforeseen delays.

When doing a shorter run the cost of parts and manufacturing go up. For example our cost for assembly through the contract assembly house goes up an additional 61% alone.

Luc informs us that the 2 prototype boards took 8 hours to build using hand assembly, our assembly house has a full SMD assembly and test facility.

Here is the offer

We have added the XC-3006 for purchase through http://nwdigitalradio.com/product/xc-3006/ at $480/unit plus shipping and sales tax (Tax is collected for orders delivered in Washington State only).

Everyone who pledged at the  $360 or $400 levels via the Kickstarter should have received a discount coupon via email  — it doesn’t match the Kickstarter pledge price, but does bring the price down in consideration of their early support.

If you signed up for the Kickstarter at the $360 or $400 level and have not received a coupon, contact sales@nwdigitalradio.com

No additional coupons will be issued, however if you wish to buy a quantity of 5 or more units, contact sales for quantity pricing.

After the first batch, we will consider future runs, again as pre-paid, firm, orders within a set timeframe, if there is sufficient interest.

NW Digital Radio is manufacturing the hardware and will support that hardware under our warranty.  Software and configuration support will come from the XLX group and other software developers.

2018 – State of the Union

NW Digital Radio has been evolving over the last few years.  Our initial focus was to develop a 70cm radio focused specifically at higher speed digital communications for the amateur radio market.  This is still a goal, however, due to a series of conditions we cannot predict when this will happen.

While working on the various aspects of the radio we have been able to produce a series of products that have sustained the ongoing efforts of the company.

We have learned a lot in the process and will be taking that knowledge into new products going forward.

We at NW Digital Radio are problem solvers, and like the process of assembling a project from components, both hardware and software, and have delivered products based on that model.

For some products this model works very well, like our ThumbDV™, which has been very successful when used with software like BlueDV, WinDV, AMBEserver, DummyRepeater, XLX/ambed, and more.  Thousands are finding that the ThumbDV™ is just the right product at the right price point and are successfully using it to communicate from computer, over the network, to Digital Voice protocols such as D-STAR, DMR, and more.

Other products, such as the UDRC and UDRC II, have allowed the creation of digital communications systems whether D-STAR repeaters,  fldigi workstations, Direwolf sound modem TNCs, or other soundcard DSP based systems.  Many of these projects have come about by experimentation and integration by individual amateurs working with open source software and our boards.

However, as we talk with customers and potential customers, we find that many are more interested in solutions that are prepackaged with hardware, software, and a case.  Basically, they want a “plug and play” solution that requires little to no integration beyond basic cabling to radios and some minor, guided, configuration.

In 2018, you will see NW Digital Radio evolving from a component provider to a solution provider.  We continue to be dedicated to products that leverage open source software and standard platforms, but will be focusing on delivering solutions that are pre-integrated with hardware, software, and packaging.

We will also continue to provide the experimenter and developer a platform that they can access and build upon.

Furthermore, we intend to use the kick starter model on some products where there appears to be an interest in the community, but where we need to know the level of that interest before proceeding with full inclusion of an idea into our product line.  If you find a product on our kick starter list, please support it, the risk to you is minimal, while helping us bring out innovative solutions.

Some of the projects we have under design at the current time include:

  • A networked, multi-speed, TNC for packet radio
  • An Emcomm workstation
  • A device for combining multiple SDR-RTL dongles into a single platform
  • An integrated low power radio/TNC

and more.

Look for these projects to roll out over the next few months.  We think 2018 is going to be a great year to continue to put “The Amateur back in Amateur Radio” —

Your NW Digital Radio team.

DMR Licensing

We get frequent inquiries about using the UDRCTM for DMR. The problem is, DMR requires a license from Motorola, the cost of which is prohibitive for the Amateur Radio market.

We all know of products that seem to indicate that it’s not really a problem, until it is …

PATENT INFRINGEMENT AND TRADE SECRET MISAPPROPRIATION COMPLAINTS AGAINST HYTERA COMMUNICATIONS

MotorolaSolutions

Pi Cases are back in Stock!

The new supplier has shipped cases so we’ll fill all of our backorders this week.

The price has increased to $15 for new orders.

Thanks for your patience.

Pi Cases – Delivery Update

We received the first article from the new supplier and the design needs tweaking so that the tabs will assemble correctly. We have a new sample in process and I’l keep you apprised.

UDRX – Status Report

Just back from Orlando Hamcation. Nice to meet many of our existing customers and chat with some new ones.

The UDRX made it thru initial bring-up and I drove them to Oregon, while Portland was being slammed with snow. Jeremy has completed the updated Drivers and PLD code and shipped the first unit to Dennis for IQ audio and RF path analysis.

No significant problems were found at this stage.

I’ll be  working on the PA and RX/TX switch while Dennis fine tunes the IQ/RF.

I’ve also been working with CMs and it looks like we’ll be be able to meet our production cost goals at this point. There is still ambiguity on the Heat Sink Extrusion and enclosure cost.

I’ll post approximately monthly as we continue to make progress.

Bryan K7UDR

Pi Cases for the UDRC-II

The Pi cases were designed and supplied by Budd Churchward, WB7FHC. Budd laser cuts the acrylic at a local DIY cooperative here in Washington.

Over the holidays the coop moved and they’re not back on line yet so we are working on alternative suppliers. We should have a first article next week and will be back in stock mid February.

If you have a case on backorder or order one now with a UDRC-II, it will be shipped for free as soon as they arrive.

UDRX Pilot Boards have Arrived

After dealing with component shortages and Holiday schedule, the UDRX pilot boards arrived this afternoon from our assembly house in Renton WA.

The boards now go into the lab for initial bring-up, then they will be split into 3 task groups:

  • SW Driver additions and updates
  • IQ audio and RF path
  • PA and RX/TX switch

There are a substantial number of relatively minor changes to the design, in addition to the major change in form factor to accommodate the switch to the R-Pi 3.

I will provide an update on our progress by Hamcation in Orlando next month, where the pilot units will be on display. There is still significant work ahead, before we can determine if the pilot run can move to production.

Thanks for your patience and support,
Bryan K7UDR

UDRX Assembled PCB

UDRX with Pi and PA

Holiday Shutdown

We will be closed the week before Christmas.

Orders received after 10am Pacific time on Friday December 16th will be shipped when we return on December 27th.

Thanks and Happy Holidays!
Bryan K7UDR