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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-19-2018, 11:22 AM
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Default AOR ARDV10 - very serious hardware issue

I am deeply saddened to have to write this, having been a devoted AOR customer for many years.

If you are considering buying a DV10 - be warned.

If you have one already - be aware.

View the below:-

https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https...V9UOWWWesikHoK

I can confirm this is correct.

The DV10 has a totally unacceptable Frequency drift as it warms up. Up to 3kHz at around 450mHz. Analogue signals may just be able to cope with this and still return a signal (albeit poorly).

Digital signal will not be able to cope with an offset of this size.

There are a lot of problems with the first batch of DV10's, but most should be curable in firmware. This fault cannot be. It will, if AOR ever acknowledge and do something about it, require hardware changes, and possibly a re-design of the PCB's.

There are already a lot of posts complaining that the DV10 does not pick up some DMR signals, compared to other makes of Radio. This hardware fault explains why.

As some of you may be aware I am the author of a program for the DV1, and was in the progress of writing one for the DV10, so to take the step below is a bitter decision.

I am in the process of returning my AR-DV10 for a refund.

You no doubt realise that AOR are paid by the radio's Distributors/Dealers. As things stand complaining to AOR will not hurt them financially so may well NOT produce a 'fix'.

However if the Distributors/Dealers have to start refunding money, they will put pressure on AOR that cannot be ignored.

If you currently own an AR-DV10 I strongly recommend you contact your Dealer and at least threaten to return the receiver unless the fault is acknowledged, and AOR undertake to correct it for present owners, as they may well do so 'quietly' in a subsequent production run and leave us with a Radio that is, sad to say, unfit for purpose.

I will continue this on my other thread, and try to keep you updated.
https://forums.radioreference.com/ao...l-new-s-w.html
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Old 06-19-2018, 11:42 AM
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Excellent investigation/diagnosis. Will keep my money in my pocket for the time being! AOR have made some fantastic products over the years.

Let's hope your DV10 is an anomaly. From the reports of others, it seems you may not be alone though.
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Old 06-19-2018, 1:15 PM
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Disregard.

Last edited by KG7AUL; 06-19-2018 at 1:25 PM.. Reason: Delete
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Old 06-19-2018, 1:58 PM
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Default YouTube Link

The YouTube link is
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWVvPMTq4rE
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Old 06-19-2018, 2:51 PM
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I watched the video and it is concerning, but using FM mode is not the way to see if the radio is on frequency or to track frequency drift. Set the radio in SSB mode with a 1KHz modulated tone from your generator and that should tell you within 20Hz what frequency the AOR is actually centered on.

Is this simply a TCXO adjustment problem that can be set back on frequency, or is the radio actually about 3KHz off frequency when turned on and eventually drifts to the correct frequency over time?
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Old 06-19-2018, 2:55 PM
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Default TEST

Can you post the above re. SSB on the YouTube page for the guy who did the video please.

As I understand it from other posts, the Radio starts on the correct frequency, then drifts away.
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Old 06-19-2018, 3:58 PM
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Hello,

I decided to hold off buying one until this problem is fixed. The lockup on remote commands is a deal breaker as well.

It reminds me of my Winradio G305e, except it took a half hour to drift on frequency. The frequency error got worse the higher up in receive frequency. The problem turned out to be the processor crystal oscillator was tapped to also be the reference oscillator for the PLL. The reference frequency shifted as the processor warmed up from use. It was okay for the G303e as the frequency error was small on HF.

I hope AOR/Yaesu have not made a similar mistake.

73 Eric
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Old 06-19-2018, 4:04 PM
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Default Drift

Quote:
Originally Posted by EricCottrell View Post
Hello,

I decided to hold off buying one until this problem is fixed. The lockup on remote commands is a deal breaker as well.

It reminds me of my Winradio G305e, except it took a half hour to drift on frequency. The frequency error got worse the higher up in receive frequency. The problem turned out to be the processor crystal oscillator was tapped to also be the reference oscillator for the PLL. The reference frequency shifted as the processor warmed up from use. It was okay for the G303e as the frequency error was small on HF.

I hope AOR/Yaesu have not made a similar mistake.

73 Eric
Eric there is another Video by the same guy testing at 800mHz. That shows the offset increases with frequency as you describe.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szHSgTBBb1s
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Old 06-19-2018, 4:05 PM
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Also watch his other videos, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvB...9sCfZzpYFuqq-A
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Old 06-19-2018, 5:05 PM
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Frequency drift of an oscillator are measured as percentage of it's fundamental frequency but not in parts of hundred, that's too coarse, but in parts per million PPM.

A certain percentage at a low frequency are less measured in Hertz compared to a high frequency but they still have the same error in frequency by a percentage value of it's own frequency.
500Hz error at 5MHz are the same error percentage as 50KHz at 500MHz.

/Ubbe
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Old 06-19-2018, 5:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marlbrook View Post
Eric there is another Video by the same guy testing at 800mHz. That shows the offset increases with frequency as you describe.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szHSgTBBb1s
Hello,

Basically doubling the frequency will double the error. Sure looks like a reference oscillator problem to me. The big question is if the error after warm-up is stable or not. If it is, then it could be a case of mistake(s) in the alignment procedure.

The DV-1 stability specification is +/- 2.5 PPM and the DV-10 is +/- 5 PPM. The Icom R-30 is +/- 2.5 PPM. So at 800 I would expect the DV-1 and R-30 to be within 2000 Hz of 800 MHz and the DV-10 to be within 4000 Hz of 800 MHz.

I looked up the specification of the Winradio G305e and it is +/- 10 PPM. The G315e uses a dedicated reference oscillator and frequency stability specification is 0.5 PPM with tuning accuracy of 1 PPM.

73 Eric

73 Eric
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Old 06-20-2018, 4:33 AM
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The simplest oscillators use a crystal together with capacitors that have a temperature sensitive capacitance to control the crystals temperature drift.

More advance oscillators have a heating element to produce a constant high temperature that give a constant frequency after a warm up period.

My RTL-SDR usb stick have a temperature controlled oscillator TCXO that have a -0,5PPM error as soon as I start to use it and the same error after a while when it is so hot I can barely touch it.

My AR8200 are so exact in frequency in room temperature that I used it to remotly measure basestations frequency accurace down to 100Hz.

There is a TCXO option for the Icom R75 shortwave receiver but my R75 without it still have a drift less than a few Hz from cold to warm.

It probably depends of luck if the frequency dependent components happens to match perfect or if they are on the end of the tolerance acceptance. Sometimes the manufacturer makes a mistake and when they have a working prototype they in the last minute decide to change someting, like the anti corrosion protective layer on the circuit board to another cheaper brand, that adds enough stray capacitance to throw the temperature stability out the window.

/Ubbe
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Old 06-20-2018, 5:08 AM
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Default Dv10 lament

Initially when the problem reports came in I was not very concerned. They all looked as if they could be fixed in Firmware, and although AOR have a far from 100% record of addressing all F/W issues reported to them for the DV1, they seem to do quite a bit, albeit slowly, and I commend them for that.

However when it comes to AOR fixing hardware issues, that is a different story.

For years, their flagship receiver had a bad fault in that it did not filter out Pager interference, compared to the equivalent Icom. Fixing that would have required a circuit change, and paying for existing sets to be modified. A costly business, so they adopted a policy of ignoring the whole thing. The fact they were a big and powerful name in the Radio world gave them the ability to do this.

From a moral point of view it was a 'wrong' decision, from a commercial point of view it paid off. They continued to have sales for that Receiver.

Coming to the point. The DV10 frequency drift matter is going to be another hardware issue. It is not a tiny problem. 3kHz at 500 and 6kHz at 800 mHz will have a serious impact on receiving transmissions, especially Digital.

AOR have sold out of their first production run very quickly. Naturally they are laughing all the way to the Bank. So they should have been, IF the DV10 was sufficiently 'fit for purpose'.

Can we trust them to do the right thing this time, or follow the Ostrich approach?

As I see it they have 3 options assuming they come up with a hardware fix:-

1. Come clean, recall the present DV10's, change the design and re-introduce the Radio to the Market when fit for purpose

2. Realise they have to do something. Covertly produce re-designed hardware and phase that in re. new batches, and 'sod' the owners who are stuck with seriously flawed DV10's

3. Apply the same thing they did above. Ignore it all. I imagine they will still be able to sell lots and lots of DV10's even in their present form.

Lets face it, lots of Users may never have noticed because we are dealing with identifying a negative. i.e. Unless you have two different Radio's side by side, using the same aerial, nobody ever knows the Digital frequencies that are missed because the DV10 has drifted too far off frequency.

Unless AOR are forced to act quickly, I fear they will choose option 3.

Just to put my point of view in perspective. I am a big fan of AOR. I still have my AR-3000, and other AOR receivers. I firmly believe the AR-DV1 is a masterpiece.

I started this thread because of many posts and discussions on the relevant Face Book page, as I believe RR Forum members need to be made aware of these issues and then they can make their own decisions.

The DV10, expensive as it is, is not 'fit for purpose', believe me I wish it was. The frequency drift matter should be acknowledged by AOR, and fixed, with a promise they will upgrade any early Radios sold. I hope they adopt this policy, as no doubt many others would wish too.

Last edited by marlbrook; 06-20-2018 at 5:30 AM..
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Old 06-23-2018, 9:07 AM
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Default More on the Frequency Drift

Hopefully will have a frequency drift figure for a different DV10 within a few days.

Interestingly the AD-DV1 is quoted as having a +/- 2.50 PPM figure, whereas the DV-10 is twice that, at +/- 5 PPM, producing the possiblility of a much increased drift factor.

I am still convinced that this is likely to cause problems with Digital signals on the DV10.

Even if the Receiver has as good as, or even better 'sensitivity' to other makes it is being compared to, it will explain why Digital signals heard on others, are not being received on the DV10.

For those of you (still alive) that can remember the good old days of computers like the Sinclair ZX, Commodore Vic20 and C64 storing and reading data via magnetic tape, the slightest misalignment of the 'Tape Head' would result in fatal flaws re. the 'reading in' of data.

Listening by ear, the sounds seemed identical, but to the P.C. if the Tape Head that was being used to 'PLAY' was not pretty well in exactly the same position of the one used to 'RECORD', the digital signal 'reading in' would just fail.

The decyphering of radio digital signals can be looked at in a similar way. There will be a certain tolerance, but if the signal is just slightly out of that, 'bits' will be lost in proprtion to the size of the frequency 'offset', and it does not take many of them being missed or wrongly read before the Digital signal will just be ignored.

Because we are talking 'Digital' that means there will be no indication whatsoever that the transmission ever took place.

The currently talked about 'drift' may not be too far off AOR's stated figure of +/- 5PPM, but sufficient to render many, especially weak Digital signals, as invisible to it (SIGH).
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Old 06-23-2018, 10:18 AM
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If they use a MCXO micro controlled crystal oscillator they could program it using a correction curve. But it is most probably a cheaper design.

Minimize Frequency Drift In Crystals | Electronic Design

/Ubbe
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Old 06-23-2018, 11:38 AM
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Default Another DV10 problem

1. Tuned to 5.505 - Volmet - on USB
2. After 25 minutes drifted sufficiently for Radio needing to be re-tuned
3. Turned DV10 off to let it cool.
4. After powering up, the signal was very distorted on original frequency, and tuning around it, until IFBW changed to 1.8. Back to 2.6, badly distorted audio.
5. AR-DV1 on same antenna (split between both Radios) - no frequency drift, no problem with IFBW of 2.6

-------------------
Try this . on DV10
1. Tune to 5.505, IFBW 2.6. Audio probably distorted but readable.
2. Switch to FM, then back to USB
3. Signal TOTALLY unreadable, until IFBW changed to 1.8

What a mess!!!
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Old 06-23-2018, 12:07 PM
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So i did a frequency drift test, with a POCSAG(456.4500) pager signal, which broadcasts the same message every 30 seconds.

I made one recording when the device was cold and one after a hour, with the backlight on "cont" and the device in its cradle. I also used a 10db attenuator to bring the signal back to a S4/5.

and yes, PDW could only decode the first one, so yeah i also believe this is the root cause of the digital decoding problems.
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Old 06-23-2018, 2:45 PM
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I did a retest, but this time without a charger hooked up and the backlight turned off, got the same bad results.
First recording decoded fine, second did not decode at all, not even partialy. The frequency is drifted of to far allready.
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Old 06-23-2018, 4:49 PM
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Default Can you afford to pay out this much money for a flawed radio?

RELUCTANT ADVICE - IF YOU HAVE AN AR-DV10 - SEND IT BACK AND GET A REFUND WHILE YOU STILL CAN.

If you have made a deposit on one in the next batch, get a refund quickly.

As things stand there are currently things wrong with the AR-DV10 that cannot be refuted, and which definitely are contrary to the advertised abilities.

Not worth getting into discussions with Dealers about frequency drift, despite it being the most serious fault.

1. The Sideband bandwidth of 2.6 does not work correctly on several DV10's, but this is intermittent (see previous post).

2. The Radio cannot be controlled by an external program (AOR have admitted that in an email to me), and cannot say when (if) those problems will be fixed.

Either of the above gives you the right to demand the Dealer accepts the Radio back, and issues a full refund. It does not match the advertised specifications.

I doubt there is anybody more devasted by this than myself. I have spent a lot of time and work developing a program to control it.

I have been lucky in that my Dealer will take the Radio back with no quibbles.

The Receiver is riddled with flaws. Some may be fixable in firmware releases, others really demand a re-design of the hardware.

The bottom line is that this first batch is really 'unfit for purpose', and remember the frequency drift is something you will never realise, since narrow band Digital transmissions will just fail. There will be no indication of this unless you are monitoring the same frequency on another Receiver.

Do NOT be fooled just because the current DV10's may decode some strong Digital frequencies on occasions, particularly before it warms up. After 20 minutes or so it may not be able to decode many transmissions on the same frequency because of the unacceptable drift. The weaker the signal, the worse it will be. With an Analogue signal you might be able to hear an off-frequency signal, but not well. You will never know if a Digital signal cannot be decoded because the Receiver has drifted too far off frequency, The Radio will just sit there apparently monitoring a quiet Channel.

Hopefully if current owners who cannot accept the loss of around 1000 actually return the equipment, the Dealers WILL put pressure on AOR to release a MKII version which is 'fit for purpose'.

If that happens I will gladly buy another, but I will need some convincing.

Anyone who decides to hang on in the hope AOR can correct this batch are almost certainly going to be very disappointed, and be landed with a very expensive Radio, that does not do what they were told it would, in too many respects. With the possibility of the added insult of knowing a MKII version is being sold that does work as it should, at some time in the future.

Those of you who know me, or know of eSPYonARD for the DV1 will realise I have been a committed AOR fan. My decision to return the DV10 has not been taken lightly.

Last edited by marlbrook; 06-23-2018 at 4:56 PM..
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Old 06-23-2018, 5:41 PM
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Thanks for all the testing and posting of these unfortunate problems. I had $1k set aside for a DV10 and was first waiting for some feedback and now I have enough information to buy something else instead.

There is no excuse for releasing a product that does not meet specifications and doesn't completely delight the customer.
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