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Showing posts from December, 2016

A quick post about some flashlights I bought

I want to do a more comprehensive review on flashlights, but I wanted to post up a quick note about these since they are so good. I was in search of a flashlight to keep in the car's glove box and one to keep in my purse. Instead of using AAAs or AAs, I decided to go the Lithium Ion battery route. I settled on the Ultrafire SK98 lights with the Cree XML-T6 LED and that uses a 18650 battery. It is a great little light but has three nagging flaws:

It scuffs rather easily
It can get hot (not sure when/why but it does sometimes)
Turning it off doesn't reset it to simply "on" at full brightness, meaning the strobe can possibly come on the next time you turn it on.

Check out the product and my amazon review. I'll probably have a more comprehensive writeup sometime.

Link:SK98 Flashlights at Amazon

Flex Radio 1.10.8 (Beta) and Serial port support

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Along with my Flex-6700, I also have other pieces of gear in my station including a SteppIR SDA100 antenna controller and a SPE Expert 1.3K-FA legal limit amplifier. Flex recently made available SmartSDR 1.10.8 software.  It promised some exciting features, but especially exciting was the support for USB serial ports for band data. While publicly available, it is a beta version, so proceed with caution.

The actual procedure of installing it is straightforward. Just run the installer and accept all of the defaults. I chose to uninstall v1.9.13 before I installed 1.10.8 so I can have a clean install.  When that is done and you first run a new version of SmartSDR it will ask you to update the radio's firmware, which you have to do in order to run SmartSDR with the radio.

The radio update went fine until it gave me a cryptic "file transfer error" which I am guessing is the firmware not being successfully loaded to the radio. I clicked the "update" button again, and…