AR-DV10 How AOR Tried to Botch The Frequency Drift Hardware Design Fault

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Aug 7, 2005
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661
#1
As we all know the frequency error and drift on the DV10 is caused by a serious hardware design fault. Rather than address the issue properly and fix the hardware AOR have tried a firmware botch (which doesn't work well), we have been analysing exactly what AOR have done in the firmware.

In firmware they take the raw hex temperature value from the sensor in the RX63 cpu and calculate the CPU temperature in 0.1 degree C steps. They then use this temperature in 2 calculations to step the PLL_REF and frequency OFFSET around to "TRY" and keep it on frequency. If you listen to a 1kHz AM modulated signal in SSB you can hear (and see using an audio spectrum analyser) the 1kHz signal jumping around and warbling away as the 2 adjustments jump around.

The equations used to jump the PLL_REF and OFFSET around are identical but use different sets of constants, the equations are as below where C1 to C4 are the 4 constants:-

Offset = (CPU Temp - C1) x ((C4 - C3) / (C2 - C1)) + C3

The calculations operate across the cpu temperature range -15.1 to +79.9, at the upper and lower limits the constants for the calculations change in 10 degree blocks and in 5 degree blocks arcross the mid range.

Not only have they turned the DV10 into something that warbles its XCO like an MFSK signal, they also managed to get the temperature gradients wrong, the DV10 still drifts, is still of frequency but now warbles like a dying bird.

I would seem AOR have lost the plot with regards to receiver design, this is an absoluted botched mess.
 

marlbrook

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#3
Thanks

No apologies for repeating this. Thanks Woodpecker for sharing your findings, and the work you have put in to this.

There will be those who have invested a lot of money in the DV10 who probably will not want to read or even believe this naturally, but others who either returned their DV10's or after reading about the problems decided not to buy one, who have really been helped by you, and a few others.

At least one Retailer is now assuring people that the frequency drift/stability issues have been fixed with firmware. That is what AOR tell them of course, and they have their own Agenda re. DV10 sales.

Like you I have said for some time only a hardware re-design could do that, Such a pity, the DV10 should have been a fantastic Radio, like its bigger brother the ARDV1..

Papering over the cracks seems so shortsighted,, but there again I suppose it is a step beyond pretending the faults never existed, or trying to 'shoot the messengers' albeit still another step in the wrong direction.
 
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#4
I will X this one off my list. They could have done something more creative like locking to a TV station pilot tone on power up, then watching temp drift and getting updates on the pilot periodically. But then, if one puts a bandpass filter in front, all that fails.

I am astounded how receiver engineering has degraded in the past 10 years. The Japanese had this down to a science and the "others" seem to be playing catch up.
 
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#5
Here's an email response from AOR(I don't believe them)

Dear Sir,

Thank you for your interest in the new AR-DV10.

The receiver is totally up to specs, providing the latest firmware is used.

Regards,

AOR Customer Service

AOR,LTD. Tokyo, Japan Home Page

The content of this email is confidential and intended for the recipient specified in message only. It is strictly forbidden to share any part of this message with any third party, without a written consent of the sender.

From: Merlin Jacobs
Sent: Thursday, October 25, 2018 8:17 AM
To: mail@aorja.com
Subject: AOR DV10

When will AOR come out with a new hardware version of the AOR DV10 that has had the off frequency problem resolved (not through so called firmware fix)?
Thank you.
Merlin K3MEJ
 
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#6
I wish the engineers at AOR were on the ball like at Elecraft. After the Elecraft KX3 radio had been on the market for some time they came up with a clever frequency cal scheme by offering upgraded firmware and allowing the radio to run its own cal routine. You put the radio in your refrigerator to get it down near freezing, then quickly take it out and feed it a super stable signal in the 50MHz range (in my case a 5th harmonic of a rubidium standard), then run the internal cal program.

With temp sensors inside the radio and the ability for it to auto tune a CW signal, at every 1deg C change in freq it zero beats on the reference signal then stores the resulting offset in a file. After the radio reaches room temp you use a hair dryer to get it around 130+ degrees then stop the cal routine. Everything is done inside the radio and no external computer is required. The end result is a custom frequency cal table for that specific radio that the radio then applies in real time. I use and check my KX3 on 2m SSB often and its always within a few HZ, which is truly remarkable for a radio with no high end TCXO.

If AOR was really smart and there was enough processing and memory zots in the DV-10 they could probably do the same thing.
 
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#9
The receiver is totally up to specs, providing the latest firmware is used.
AOR,LTD. Tokyo, Japan Home Page

The content of this email is confidential and intended for the recipient specified in message only. It is strictly forbidden to share any part of this message with any third party, without a written consent of the sender.
AOR and their "confidential" nonsense email lies again.

We've pulled apart their latest firmware and fully analysed it, we have the calculations used and all the constants, we know exactly what they've done and how they've tried to botch it.

Do they think serious users won't notice an oscillator not only drifing but jumping around as they "attempt" to keep it near the correct frequency?

What's even worse than selling this rubbish is continuing to lie about it being fixed, I wonder if Japan has laws against companies behaving in this way.
 
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#11
Interesting that no one is selling them on Ebay except for one seller in Poland and the wants $10,000!. HRO is having a hard time unloading them for $799.00. I'm glad I bought the IC-R30. If AOR comes out with a improved version of the AR-DV10 I'll but it, but I'll want for now.
 
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#12
The Polish seller is just incompetent and cannot do the currency conversion from Zl to anything else. I reported it early on to AOR that the DV10 had multiple issues, they chose the route of denial, followed by quick firmware botch then finally amended the spec rather than doing anything!

To this day they still won't address the 2 main issues of frequency drift and memory related remote commands locking the radio solid, instead they think their time is better spent adding things like a battery saver feature that only works when listening to a single frequency in VFO mode.

AOR are so out of touch with reality, arrogrant and incompetent it beggars belief.
 
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#13
I see that “Scanner Master” is no longer a AOR dealer. All AOR stuff has been pulled off the website or marked as discontinued. Question is did the AR-DV10 fiasco have something to do with this decision ?

AOR Communications Receivers | ScannerMaster.com
AOR AR-DV1 Receiver | Scanner Master
AR8600MKII Communications Receiver | ScannerMaster.com

US dealers Universal Radio and HRO are continuing to sell AOR products including the AR-DV1 and AR-DV10 (the AR-DV1 has NOT been discontinued, and of course AV-DV10 should be) .

AOR AR-DV1 Wideband Communications Receiver
AOR USA AR-DV1(B) Receivers Communications Receivers , ARDV1(B)

All of the AR-DV10 issues and ill conceived firmware patches are certainly not going to help AOR's overall reputation. I have one friend who has told me that he will NEVER purchase any AOR products ever again. He's done and was loyal AOR customer for decades.

swman
 
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#14
"I have one friend who has told me that he will NEVER purchase any AOR products ever again. He's done and was loyal AOR customer for decades." I'm one of these . I can accept troubles on an electronic device but not like AOR answered to customer
 

iMONITOR

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#15
I see that “Scanner Master” is no longer a AOR dealer. All AOR stuff has been pulled off the website or marked as discontinued. Question is did the AR-DV10 fiasco have something to do with this decision ?

US dealers Universal Radio and HRO are continuing to sell AOR products including the AR-DV1 and AR-DV10 (the AR-DV1 has NOT been discontinued, and of course AV-DV10 should be) .

All of the AR-DV10 issues and ill conceived firmware patches are certainly not going to help AOR's overall reputation. I have one friend who has told me that he will NEVER purchase any AOR products ever again. He's done and was loyal AOR customer for decades.

swman
AOR is somewhat of a different market for Scanner Master. Their radios are highly advanced, complicated and require more support than your typical scanner radio, and likely to require much more support than they have time for after the sale. Not to mention they're very expensive. Most buyers that go to Scanner Master are looking for a 'Scanner'. AOR products are not scanners, they are advanced communications receivers. It would probably be a reasonable assumption 8 out of 10 customers that purchased an AOR receiver had no idea what they were buying and were disappointed that it had a steep learning curve and was too much of a departure from scanners and what they're familiar with.

I recently purchased a AOR AR-DV1 and I couldn't be happier! Granted I've encountered many late nights trying to learn all it's features and capabilities, but it doesn't get boring that's for sure!

I noticed they also do no sell ICOM products like the new IC-R30, most likely for the same reason.

Everyone has one friend or more that doesn't like a particular radio, but that's no reason to dismiss all the manufactures offerings! It's unfortunate AOR hasn't been able to resolve the issues with the AR-DV10 hand-held receiver.
 

mrkelso

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#16
I recently purchased a AOR AR-DV1 and I couldn't be happier! Granted I've encountered many late nights trying to learn all it's features and capabilities, but it doesn't get boring that's for sure!
I have been waiting to pull the trigger on the DV-1, Is now a good time? Have they ironed out all the kinks?
 

iMONITOR

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#17
I have been waiting to pull the trigger on the DV-1, Is now a good time? Have they ironed out all the kinks?
I didn't mean to hijack the AR-DV10 thread. I'd suggest reading the existing AR-DV1 posts, all those people know more than I do, it's new to me, but so far no complaints.
 
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