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Someone over on Radio Reference Fourms (Jul 30th) is indicating that the IC-R30 will include DMR in a few months ? If this turns out to be valid the big question is will the IC-R8600 also get DMR added (extra cost upgrades ?) ?

Icom released new 1.06 firmware on Aug 03 : USA 16 version linked here.
Changes in v1.06 firmware
- Fixed an issue where the digital mode's audio may not be output or recorded after starting a memory scan when both analog and digital entries are in the memory channels, even after the scan has been canceled.
- Fixed an issue where the encryption key may not be properly decrypted while receiving an encrypted digital signal on A band, in the single watch mode.


English brochure can be viewed here. (Updated : Aug 12)
Icom released new 1.33 firmware on July 31 : USA 02 version linked here.
Changes in v1.32 firmware
- Fixed distortion that sometimes occurred when receiving a signal in certain situations (has our audio distortion issue been addressed ?).
- Improved parts of the speech function.
Changes in v1.33 firmware
- Fixed an issue where the digital mode's audio is not output after starting a memory scan with analog and digital modes in the memory channels.
- Fixed an issue where the CI-V baud rate may not set properly when receiving a CI-V command when turning OFF the receiver.


Latest Firmware v1.33, the "audio distortion / harshness" returns to our ears ! : With v1.32 firmware the audio distortion / harshness issues to MY ears with 1.30/1.31/1.33 has been truly fixed. We strongly recommend V1.32 if you desire the best audio from the receiver. Even sounds cleaner / sharper than what 1.20 did......excellent indeed Icom..."thank you" ! Yes with the latest v1.33 firmware the nasty distortion / harshness returned in our view. I will say that it's has to be the cleanest and most pleasant sounding communications receiver we have EVER used with the 1.32 firmware installed, yes it's that good. Icom now needs to fix what I call the "AGC Swamping" bug.  See my updated version 10.0 review for the updated information on all of these topics (added mode and NXDN information).

UPDATES : (Updated : Jul 31)
After more time using it, the CS-R8600's (IC-R8600's programing software from Icom) "print function" is near useless in our view as as it can't print entire channel information on one page and wastes paper to total unreasonable limits ! We used screen shots of the GUI "pre-print" screen (landscape) and just printed those .jpeg's (even if this was a chore to make happen).
-
"BUG REPORTS" have now been moved over to the BOTTOM of the review page. Will continue to update these as required on the review page, but only to cover samples with the new 1.32 / 1.33 firmware now (Last entry Jun 01).
Version 1.01 "USB I/Q Package" for HDSDR was released on May 31st. Now supports the Windows 10 Version 1803 (April 2018). Note : We have not tested the I/Q feature of the IC-R8600 (nor do we use Windows 10).
-  Eric Cottrell reports that the Icom has released the IC-R8600 I/Q OUTPUT REFERENCE GUIDE.
-  Simon Brown's “SDR Console” program for use with the Icom IC-R8600 I/Q output. Remember that “SDR Console” does NOT require a EXTIO.
Version 1.30 "latest" firmware for the Icom IC-7300 (July 20, 2018)
Also see the 2 page manual for Ver. 1.30 firmware (PDF)

Changes in v1.30 firmware
- A SET MODE item is added to expand the transmission passband width for the SSB data mode up to "100 to 2900 Hz".
- A SET MODE item is added to make the USB SEND/USB Keying function active immediately after USB port connection. The Menu structure is changed accordingly.
- Other performance improvements and bug fixes. (Updated : Jul 20)
There are many user reports of excessive drift and other issues with the AR-DV10. "You Tube Video" can be seen here, also see AOR DV10 HF vs Kenwood TH-74e and AR-DV10 Frequency Error at 800MHz. Comparison video between the AR-DV1 and AR-DV10.  See our AR-DV1 review here, which has it's own major bugs which have yet to be fixed (and probably never will). AR-DV1 is also off frequency on HF.

It appears that the AM / FM Broadcast sections are using a one-chip radio IC (like the IC used in the el-cheapo Chinese radios) ? It still uses super heterodyne circuits as indicated in the specification information, NO direct sampling is used that I can see (look at the block diagram in the brochure).

UPDATE : Carl S. reports to us directly that his AR-DV10 sample has these shortcomings : Flickering display, extremely low audio, low sensitivity and yes the dreaded drift issue. Has not enjoyed 1 good monitoring session with it. Strong "Caveat Emptor" at least for now. (Updated : Jul 25)
- Icom 7610 Heat Sink, Loose or Detached ADC Heatsinks
- You Tube Video : IC-7610 Issues: LCD Burn In, 'Heatsink Gate' & Others (clearly shows the LCD "Burn in" issue at the end)
- You Tube Video : Icom 7610 Heat Sink Check

Many replace the main 3 pot controls with better quality ones (at around $ 10. to $ 15. for EACH control). In our limited research near "drop in replacements" COULD be ? : PEC Brand (were Honeywell Clarostat RV4 Series), Both Linear Taper, 10 %, 2 Watt . NOTE : We have not replaced these in our sample (at least not yet), nor have we acquired the parts to do so.

2 "Gain" Pots  R9 and R20 : TWO RV4NAYSD251A (250 ohms)
1 "Phase" Pot  R16 : ONE RV4NAYSD102A (1K ohms)
IMPORTANT UPDATE : Our concerns were found valid. Rob Sherwood NC0B reports to us that the IC-7610's internal fan does indeed cycle with JUST RECEIVE ONLY use !! So it's the same as with the IC-7600 fan operation and noise (our full IC-7600 review can be seen here). I for one will NOT be making a IC-7610 purchase now or in the future (it's off my possible purchase list permanently). But I'm sure for many (most) this trait will not be an issue at all. This is a VERY IMPORTANT factor and a total deal breaker for ME ! As we have already covered in our IC-7300's review, it's fan NEVER operates in just "Receive only" use. NO fan operation is REQUIRED with any "receiver" for our very sensitive ears to this kind of noise !!

For many IC-7600 owners, after awhile with the fan inhaling air nearly full time in a warm room, annoying viewable dust can settle in between the front lens and the actual LCD. Removing that is near impossible for most. One can find references to this issue on the IC-7600 "Groups IO" list. Now....IF the IC-7610 will have this same trait is unknown ?
(Updated : May 23)
"Universal Radio has moved its operations to a more efficient location here in the Columbus, Ohio area where we can continue to serve our loyal customers. This will be the fourth location change since Universal was founded in 1942. We look forward to many more years of serving the amateur and short wave communities which Universal Radio has done for 75 years. The new location is a 30-minute drive from the old Americana location." .

Universal Radio Inc.
651 Lakeview Plaza Blvd. Suite B
Worthington, OH 43085

www.universal-radio.com


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