[App_rpt-users] App_rpt-users Digest, Vol 85, Issue 26

Bryan D. Boyle bdboyle at bdboyle.com
Wed Mar 16 07:46:28 EDT 2016


Time is worth something; reinventing the wheel to accomplish what already exists is, to me, and me only, a waste of time.  there are a lot more other interesting things to do in the hobby, for me and me only, than hack at cheap chinese sound dongles to try and get them to do what is already accomplished by supporting fellow hams who have taken the time to think it through and don't charge an arm and leg to do so.

But that is my opinion on how I interface and spend my time in the hobby.  How you view it is how you view it.  Whether you agree with me or not or not is irrelevant as is your opinion, to me and me only, as to how I view what my time is worth in making that decision whether to build or buy.  Neither view is absolutely wrong, and neither is absolutely right, jus as the motivation for doing so.  

besides, it's just a hobby, and has no importance other than that.  I walked away from it in 1989 when I lost interest, and have no doubt that I will do the same again before my final chapter is written.

--
Bryan
Sent from my iPhone 6S...No electrons were harmed in the sending of this message.



> On Mar 16, 2016, at 01:44, Jim Aspinwall <no1pc at yahoo.com> wrote:
> 
> Thanks Kevin, more positive from you!
> 
> Others: "billable time" - seriously?  that's a play I work on consumer vendors for spite.  
> 
> If you back-bill your hobby and intellectual time on self-assigned-worth values... in THIS context. Thanks for your call, we'll get back to you, never.
> 
> We're talking about $3-12 free-market parts and 20 minutes of gawd-awful soldering level of effort here. Sheesh.
> 
> I am just curious about and enabling least-common-denominator implementation and idea sharing as supplies morph and shift.  If I wanted $450/hr engineering... well, a lot of folks would starve.  Campbells or Progressive cans?  When I make all this work, the for-self-assigned-value folks self-obligated to a sub-contracted fee of $375 per implementation, non-commercial... I want to be fair and allow you something for your list trolling and link-clicking efforts. 
> 
> (I am familiar with intellectual property, fair-use and public domain issues... you admitted to be exempt and obligated otherwise! pffft.)
> 
> 
> From: "app_rpt-users-request at ohnosec.org" <app_rpt-users-request at ohnosec.org>
> To: app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org 
> Sent: Tuesday, March 15, 2016 6:51 PM
> Subject: App_rpt-users Digest, Vol 85, Issue 26
> 
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> Today's Topics:
> 
>   1. USB Sound Dongle Challenges (Jim Aspinwall)
>   2. New Dongle Potential (Jim Aspinwall)
>   3. Re: New Dongle Potential (Kevin Custer)
>   4. Re: New Dongle Potential (Bryan D. Boyle)
>   5. Re: New Dongle Potential (Steve Zingman)
> 
> 
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> 
> Message: 1
> Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 22:05:54 +0000 (UTC)
> From: Jim Aspinwall <no1pc at yahoo.com>
> To: "app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org" <app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org>
> Subject: [App_rpt-users] USB Sound Dongle Challenges
> Message-ID:
>     <504928773.650221.1458079554502.JavaMail.yahoo at mail.yahoo.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
> 
> 
> The original CM-108/-109-based products a few have documented mods for are evaporating from common availability.?
> A few of us have ordered or tried to order from "known good links" (circa 2014/2015) off Amazon or eBay only to encounter dead/expired/no-longer-available links or "byte the bullet" and opt for a 108/109-claiming look-alike and come up with yet another version of unusable product.
> If we can determine the same/similar/equivalent pinout locations between the 108, 109, 119 or whatever different chips we might be able to revise some of the mod docs for alternatives.
> However, the latest small batch I acquired came with not pin-exposed chip-on-board (for which there could be more hope) but connection flooded die-on-board implementations and drastically differently layout, no direct access to pins without risking the chip trying to 'uncap' it.
> Two recent acquisitions pictured:
> http://www.no1pc.org/radio/NewerChip.jpg?- CM119 chip - one such device has already been proven to work with IRLP and Asterisk via Pi - but I'd like to do the PTT/COS tap-offs.
> 
> http://www.no1pc.org/radio/DieOnBoard2.jpg?- not yet sure of the chip, but pinouts are obviously a challenge.
> 
> I can try to poke about and see if the exposed-pin CM119 is viable, if someone familiar with the chips or their layout can advice. ?The die-version - good luck?
> Ideas? ?Existing updates?
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> ------------------------------
> 
> Message: 2
> Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 23:20:39 +0000 (UTC)
> From: Jim Aspinwall <no1pc at yahoo.com>
> To: "app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org" <app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org>
> Subject: [App_rpt-users] New Dongle Potential
> Message-ID:
>     <337264884.728852.1458084039564.JavaMail.yahoo at mail.yahoo.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
> 
> 
> Perhaps at least half-answering my previous query...
> This is what I recently bought - the die-on-board version:http://www.ebay.com/itm/221670209239?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT
> 
> Anticipating this interface scheme will work:http://www.crompton.com/hamradio/usb_fob_modification/usbfob_interface.pdf
> 
> we may be able to extrapolate some updates... I did verify the pinout of the 108 and 119 chips are the same.
> Internally:http://www.no1pc.org/radio/TopAccess.jpg
> 
> Regardless of direct/specific pin access, if the controls/indicators are assumed the same, access to the associated signals should be available at the respective (VolUp, VolDn) switches and Red LED. ?
> The audio jacks are through-hole mount. ?Potentially removable and place DC blocking/coupling caps in the dongle, as well as the PTT output buffer, and perhaps any buffer for the active-low CTCSS and COS inputs.
> To make a little more space and not chance an erroneous, unnecessary button press, clip the actuator posts and glue the button tops in place.
> Button posts:http://www.no1pc.org/radio/ButtonTop.jpg
> 
> 
> It may be a few days before I can get to the necessary 'surgery', create a new node and test, but this looks to have potential.
> 
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> ------------------------------
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> Message: 3
> Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 19:43:07 -0400
> From: Kevin Custer <kuggie at kuggie.com>
> To: "app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org" <app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org>
> Subject: Re: [App_rpt-users] New Dongle Potential
> Message-ID: <56E89E0B.50208 at kuggie.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"; Format="flowed"
> 
> 
> On 3/15/2016 7:20 PM, Jim Aspinwall wrote:
> >
> > Perhaps at least half-answering my previous query...
> 
> At some point it might be difficult at best to come up with a reliable 
> source of non-potted USB dongles.  Maybe that time is upon us?  With 
> that in mind, I come up with this:
> http://www.masterscommunications.com/products/radio-adapter/ra35.html
> 
> Now - this device is currently in beta testing and won't be available to 
> the public for about a month, maybe less.  I received a shipment of 
> genuine C-Media CM119A chips today.  Circuit boards will be produced 
> after reviewing all of the feedback from the owners of the 10 units 
> currently in the field.
> 
> No - it's not a $2.00 FOB, but what's your time and money worth to buy 
> products that are potted and unusable?  Maybe the features of such a 
> device like the RA-35 makes it worthy of the asking price? I'll let that 
> up to you to decide.  I am assembling a list of those interested.  Email 
> direct.
> 
> Thanks,
> Kevin
> 
> kevin // at  // masterscommunications  //  dot  //  com
> 
> 
> 
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> ------------------------------
> 
> Message: 4
> Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 21:24:48 -0400
> From: "Bryan D. Boyle" <bdboyle at bdboyle.com>
> To: app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org
> Subject: Re: [App_rpt-users] New Dongle Potential
> Message-ID: <56E8B5E0.7050102 at bdboyle.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252; format=flowed
> 
> On 3/15/2016 7:43 PM, Kevin Custer wrote:
> >
> > On 3/15/2016 7:20 PM, Jim Aspinwall wrote:
> >>
> 
> ***DELETIA***
> >
> > No - it's not a $2.00 FOB, but what's your time and money worth to buy
> > products that are potted and unusable?  Maybe the features of such a
> > device like the RA-35 makes it worthy of the asking price? I'll let that
> > up to you to decide.  I am assembling a list of those interested.  Email
> > direct.
> 
> While I hold nothing against anyone who wants to hack at something to 
> get it to work...time is money...at least for me it is...so spending 
> anything more than an hour at my contract rate, to me, and only me, 
> quickly outweighs the $50-100 usd that it might cost to purchase either 
> an already-constructed and proven device...or spend hours looking for a 
> $3.00 part that I have to spend another 2 hours modifying with no 
> guarantee (especially for pacific-rim sourced devices off fleabay) that 
> it is actually useable (USB programming cables, anyone?).
> 
> Done as an academic exercise...why not?  Putting the bashed-together 
> device into a commercial site?  That's why hams get thrown out.  That's 
> just me, though.  I'm sure the price of Kevin's device, the upgraded 
> dongle from Repeater Builder, or Dave Kramer's URI in terms of being 
> tested and proven working, when what your time is worth is considered, 
> are actually cheaper.
> 
> I helped design and build a broadcast quality 1KW FM transmitter back in 
> the day for a station.  Passed all the proof tests.  But, it cost, in 
> the end, 2x what it would have cost to just issue a PO to Harris/Gates 
> (at the time) for a manufactured rig with a guarantee.
> 
> But, again, that's just me and my $.03.
> BB
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ------------------------------
> 
> Message: 5
> Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 21:51:17 -0400
> From: Steve Zingman <szingman at msgstor.com>
> To: "app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org" <app_rpt-users at ohnosec.org>
> Subject: Re: [App_rpt-users] New Dongle Potential
> Message-ID: <56E8BC15.4010500 at msgstor.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252; format=flowed
> 
> I fully agree with Bryan, my billable time is worth more then the time 
> spent modifying a sound FOB.
> I have been testing the RA-35 and I love it. I can not find anything it 
> can't do. I've tested it with DIAL on both x86 and ARM without a glitch. 
> I've tried it with DSD and Mike has tried it with D-Star. I've run out 
> of things to test. As they say, It just works!
> 
> 73, Steve N4IRS
> 
> On 03/15/2016 09:24 PM, Bryan D. Boyle wrote:
> > On 3/15/2016 7:43 PM, Kevin Custer wrote:
> >>
> >> On 3/15/2016 7:20 PM, Jim Aspinwall wrote:
> >>>
> >
> > ***DELETIA***
> >>
> >> No - it's not a $2.00 FOB, but what's your time and money worth to buy
> >> products that are potted and unusable?  Maybe the features of such a
> >> device like the RA-35 makes it worthy of the asking price? I'll let that
> >> up to you to decide.  I am assembling a list of those interested.  Email
> >> direct.
> >
> > While I hold nothing against anyone who wants to hack at something to 
> > get it to work...time is money...at least for me it is...so spending 
> > anything more than an hour at my contract rate, to me, and only me, 
> > quickly outweighs the $50-100 usd that it might cost to purchase 
> > either an already-constructed and proven device...or spend hours 
> > looking for a $3.00 part that I have to spend another 2 hours 
> > modifying with no guarantee (especially for pacific-rim sourced 
> > devices off fleabay) that it is actually useable (USB programming 
> > cables, anyone?).
> >
> > Done as an academic exercise...why not?  Putting the bashed-together 
> > device into a commercial site?  That's why hams get thrown out.  
> > That's just me, though.  I'm sure the price of Kevin's device, the 
> > upgraded dongle from Repeater Builder, or Dave Kramer's URI in terms 
> > of being tested and proven working, when what your time is worth is 
> > considered, are actually cheaper.
> >
> > I helped design and build a broadcast quality 1KW FM transmitter back 
> > in the day for a station.  Passed all the proof tests.  But, it cost, 
> > in the end, 2x what it would have cost to just issue a PO to 
> > Harris/Gates (at the time) for a manufactured rig with a guarantee.
> >
> > But, again, that's just me and my $.03.
> > BB
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
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> 
> -- 
> "Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about."
> 1st Law of Logic
> 
> 
> 
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