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Thread: JVC Kenwood buys Radio Activity

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    Default JVC Kenwood buys Radio Activity

    http://www.criticalcommunicationsrev...radio-activity

    This is interesting because Radio Activity have a DMR simulcast system and is evidently a Motorola Solutions Application Provider https://www.motorolasolutions.com/en...0-160-450.html


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    Quote Originally Posted by escomm View Post
    http://www.criticalcommunicationsrev...radio-activity

    This is interesting because Radio Activity have a DMR simulcast system and is evidently a Motorola Solutions Application Provider https://www.motorolasolutions.com/en...0-160-450.html
    We need 700 MHz DMR, so P25 Phase II can be pushed aside. In Canada, all new public safety allocations are 700 MHz (For TRSs). No DMR/700 = not an option, and is forcing people into the P25 scam.

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    Smart move by JVC Kenwood. I saw Radio Activity's demo at IWCE this year. Very advanced and impressive product portfolio, multi-mode DMR/P25/NXDN/Analog network base radio modules. For a fraction of what competitor's charge for much less hardware and flexibility. RadioActivity has some large deployments around the world of that system. And yes, they support DMR simulcast, something MSI wants to keep out of NA.

    JVC Kenwood is making some strategic moves: first acquiring EFJ and now this acquisition. They are building a serious product/system portfolio and bringing some of the brighter minds in the business together.
    Your streaming makes me AES-256. Keep it up and you'll soon have nothing to listen to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MTS2000DES View Post
    And yes, they support DMR simulcast, something MSI wants to keep out of NA.
    This makes me really upset. It's all based on MSI's greed. Screw the customer and their needs', let's do what's BEST FOR US.

    It's my belief the people responsible for this type of draconian, greed-driven, sick thinking, should be rounded up sent packing. They want to keep technology out of our market so they can sell their OVERPRICED P25 PHASE II CRAP, at 8-10x the cost of DMR, when DMR does the exact same thing for much less.

    DMR vs. P25 Phase II:

    - DMR Tier III TDMA control channel supports CC on TS1, voice on TS2. No P25 Phase II TDMA control channel.

    - No P25 Phase II (TDMA) conventional support whatsoever.

    - P25 Phase II implementation requires an expensive trunking controller and associated costs.

    - DMR offers Tier II trunking solutions. No controller required. With the hidden "Extended LCP" option, you can expand up to 20 sites, with 16 timeslots per site.

    - P25 Phase I/Phase II offer no infrastructure protection. DMR (at least MSI's MOTOTRBO implementation) support RAS, which keeps bootleggers and eavesdroppers off. It functions similarly to P25 Radio Authentication.

    - Compared to P25 Phase I, DMR offers double the system capacity (TDMA), half the infrastructure costs, half the power consumption, half the rack space and less signal loss due to less multicoupling.

    - P25 Phase II and DMR both use AMBE+2 vocoder @ 2450bps for codec, and 1150bps for FEC. Audio should be identical.

    - P25 Phase II radios (APX) cost 5-10x more than MOTOTRBO 2.0 and 2.5 radios.

    - MSI refuses to sell (easily, anyway) AES-256 to NA TRBO customers. Want AES? Go APX/P25 Phase II. In EMEA market, this is not a problem.

    - MSI artificially degraded the audio in MOTOTRBO products, by means of over-driving the vocoder input. I identified and fixed this problem, and posted the fix here
    on this site. MSI was forced to implement the changes/corrections in firmware R02.50.05+, and sicked the DHS HSI on me for "criminal copyright infringement" as their way of thanking me.

    - MSI intentionally does not manufacture a 700 MHz DMR solution, because then public safety customers would have CHOICE.

    MSI, may all of you greedy, sub-human, filthy people, suffer catastrophic financial losses in the new year. You have no business steering this industry with your greed. CUSTOMERS COME FIRST, NOT YOUR PROFITS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MTS2000DES View Post
    Smart move by JVC Kenwood...

    ... JVC Kenwood is making some strategic moves: first acquiring EFJ and now this acquisition. They are building a serious product/system portfolio and bringing some of the brighter minds in the business together.
    Kenwood has really upped their game in the last ten years.

    Their radios are solid. I personally only use Kenwood for my personal use.

    I have:

    TK-8180H (400-470MHz)
    NX-700
    NX-200

    You can not pry these radios out of my hands.

    Kenwood was the first to offer multiple formats in the same radio, and multiple formats in a multiband set up(even if you do need to link single band units to a common control head).

    Being able to have NXDN, DMR AND P25 phase 1&2 Plus multiple bands in their portables would be good as well.

    If they offer a V/U1/700/800MHz multiband/Multi protocol portable as competition to the APX8000, they will likely be hammering nails in MSIs coffin.

    If they offer P25 phase 1&2 Plus DMR tier 3 in the NX-5xxxx series they will steal even more market share.

    Kenwood is listening to what the market needs, and are making strategic moves to be able to deliver these needs to its customers. They are adapting to the changing landscape. MSI is not.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Viper1-6 View Post
    Kenwood has really upped their game in the last ten years.

    Their radios are solid. I personally only use Kenwood for my personal use.
    You can not pry these radios out of my hands.
    I 100% agree. They make a solid radio.

    Quote Originally Posted by Viper1-6 View Post
    Being able to have NXDN, DMR AND P25 phase 1&2 Plus multiple bands in their portables would be good as well.
    If they offer a V/U1/700/800MHz multiband/Multi protocol portable as competition to the APX8000, they will likely be hammering nails in MSI’s coffin.
    If they offer P25 phase 1&2 Plus DMR tier 3 in the NX-5xxxx series they will steal even more market share.
    In the NX-5K series you can do two of the three formats in one radio.
    You can however, link three radio decks together and get NXDN, DMR, & P25 phase I or II.
    Kind of an expensive way to do it but it gets the job done.
    Now if they offered all three options in a single deck, that would be a game changer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Viper1-6 View Post
    Kenwood is listening to what the market needs, and are making strategic moves to be able to deliver these needs to its customers. They are adapting to the changing landscape. MSI is not.
    I don't entirely agree.
    Two reasons:
    1) Customers and dealers have been asking Kenwood for the three radio format in a single desk since they first announced the NX-5k series.
    All we keep hearing from Kenwood is "we are looking into it" with no other mentions of a beta or additional feedback.
    2) The other big gripe is the way they are doing their upgrades. They've taken a page from MSI's book about entitlement keys.
    "Here's a base radio for $400. Oh, you want to program the radio with software, buy the key for $200. You need more channels? $400. P25 trunking? $600. DMR? $200."

    Keys and key management is complete bullshit the way they are doing it. Case in point, heaven forbid your PC that you have the software installed on ever crashes. It is a complete pain in the ass to try to get Kenwood to de-authorize a key so you can use it again on the new computer. (This was a dealer mind you that had this happen.) You've either got two choices, wait six months while they play 200 questions about de-authorizing a key, or spend another ~$400 to get a new key. Oh and don't ever lose the upgrade keys.
    Such utter nonsense.

    This is one reason that I havent upgraded to the NX-5K yet. Once they pull their heads out of their ass and fix that portion, then I would upgrade.
    Poor planning leads to poor results-->Welcome to OKWIN.

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    Not gonna lie, I've been very tempted to flip my XPR7550 and get a NX5300. Having P25 and DMR in one radio would be the bomb.

    The only thing that turns me off is the ergonomics... it just looks and feels like a scanner to me. The software/entitlement nonsense that the above poster mentioned is a negative, too... not to mention that KPG-D1N is easily the worst piece of programming software they've ever turned out.
    "The Girl Scouts found several hungry REACT members at the finish line..."

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    Quote Originally Posted by motorola_otaku View Post
    KPG-D1N is easily the worst piece of programming software they've ever turned out.
    As you know from our convos outside of here, I've just spent several weeks fighting with APX CPS, A25 CPS, and KPG-D1 to build brand new codeplugs for a P25 system. Ironically APX CPS was the easiest to get the job done. KPG-D1 wasn't horrible, but the learning curve of someone like me who's used to (a) KPG-89 and (2) APX/A25 CPS meant it was a bit of a chore, and to boot, the 90-120 seconds that KPG-D1 takes to process the codeplug after reading the radio or loading from disk (even on a brand new computer) is infuriating. (A25 CPS? Don't get me started.)

    I've learned how to use KPG-D1 fairly well, through almost constant use of the help file and one or two advice requests. I don't mind it that much. I shouldn't have to plan to do something else for a few minutes after I press 'read from radio' though. I'd expect that from 1990s computing, not new software on a machine with a 3GHz i7 and 12GB of RAM.

    The radio itself... the NX-5400 is growing on me and my crews. We've used TK-2180/3180s for several years (and before that, MT2000s/HT750s/MTS2000s) and everybody loves the new radios. Of course, a lot of it may have to do with the better feature set in modern radios over & above any of these older ones (none of our older radios were "model 3"/"tier 3", with full menu options etc), but the Kenwood price for radios is a hell of a lot better than the Moto price.

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    This makes me happy. I've sold my Motorola XPR5550s and replaced with NX5800 and am very impressed with the radios.

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    Radio activity make some great products especially for the smaller systems.

    Here is a local VHF DMR Tier II repeater at a site I manage which is backhauled via UHF DMR link working in point-to-point mode. So in the rack are two otherwise independent Kairos units. Also visible is an RFI duplexer and partly connected Cisco switch used for connection and monitoring:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Kairos is a old Greek word meaning the right, critical, or opportune moment. Something related to time so possibly a good name for a TDMA product. Here a shot of the repeater module out of the rack (from the maker's web site):

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Not certain I dig the packaging but they really do work well. Rated at 25W but in this install it is running at more like 12W because of the high antenna gain and because the user radios are all handheld.
    Last edited by Astro Spectra; Dec 23, 2017 at 02:49 AM.
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    I've gotten information on Hytera's DS-6310 simulcast and Radio Activity solution is about 1/3 the cost for a relatively simple 3 site system. Amazing

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    With Tier 3 subscribers from Tait, Hytera, and eventually Kenwood, I think we will see some seriously good competition to MSI


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    The backhaul options with the Kairos is great, I feel like backhaul is totally overlooked in the commercial market, relying on public ISP is pathetic but not everyone has/can afford microwave and license free i.e. Ubiquiti air fiber is limited.

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    There are a few VHF DMR simulcast systems in my area using Radio Activity hardware and they all seem to work quite well. A few IPSC systems have been swapped out as well as there was constant issues with the roaming between sites.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Astro Spectra View Post
    Radio activity make some great products especially for the smaller systems.

    Here is a local VHF DMR Tier II repeater at a site I manage which is backhauled via UHF DMR link working in point-to-point mode. So in the rack are two otherwise independent Kairos units. Also visible is an RFI duplexer and partly connected Cisco switch used for connection and monitoring:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Kairos.jpg 
Views:	182 
Size:	109.4 KB 
ID:	11317

    Kairos is a old Greek word meaning the right, critical, or opportune moment. Something related to time so possibly a good name for a TDMA product. Here a shot of the repeater module out of the rack (from the maker's web site):

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	img_home_kairos_prospettiva.jpg 
Views:	333 
Size:	25.1 KB 
ID:	11318

    Not certain I dig the packaging but they really do work well. Rated at 25W but in this install it is running at more like 12W because of the high antenna gain and because the user radios are all handheld.
    They have diversity receivers on their base stations, something that Motorola never quite embraced on their LMR systems. You can save quite a bit of money not having to build out remote receiver sites if one main site can do the work.

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    I think simulcast is coming to MOTOTRBO, just look at the SLR line of repeaters. The hardware can do it, it just has to be turned on. Once a major competitor releases the feature and sales of that product go up, M will be forced to follow. Additionally, I work with a lot of hole-in-the-wall dealers in rural locations. M has pulled many of their dealerships back or raised their pricing structures for P25 products. Many are saying "OK" and slinging Tait/Harris. I was very surprised by the Tait P25 products. Simple, rugged for the price, and cheap. (never thought I would say a $2500 radio is "cheap". FB

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    It's here now. I have multiple systems in my area using it (with RadioActivity repeaters).

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    My guess is that it may be a while before M considers them a direct competitor. The dealers and customer techs that I interface with cannot be bothered to sweep an antenna with a VNA. Many (like myself before I started my current role), believe that a simple RF power test on a TX or RX line to determine go/no go is sufficient. I am finding out that it is not a quality test. Further, the Ethernet networking burden is pretty high on a modern DMR multisite system. Many "techs" simply cannot jump over that hurdle (no, a ping test is not a valid measure of throughput, latency, jitter, or packet loss)(also, please try to use pre-made cables!!). Finally, simple radio 101 items like grounding and connectorization are constant headaches. I am really seeing local shops starting to separate out into 2 different strata;
    -A Shops that are similar to MSS level where there are public safety/Fed Gov contracts with high level sales schmucks and several different types smart guys.
    -B Shops that are often rural/small where the owner is the smart guy, sales guy, etc. Few maintenance contracts. And lack of formal knowledge on antennas, cable, grounding, and network principles. Often there are a couple of guys hanging around on their way into the industry or on their way out of the industry.

    My experience over the last 2 decades in radio indicates that there are few A shops (1%? 5%?), with the majority being B shops(or on their way to being a B). This is not an indictment of shops, it is more of observation of profit being driven out of an industry that then causes a brain drain if you do not evolve.

    I wrote all of that to say that simulcast would be amazing for commercial DMR. But, like AES, those 2 features are what is protecting the P25 sales which has tremendous profit margin. I think very few dealers would take the risk of deploying DMR simulcast. FB

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fatboy View Post
    I wrote all of that to say that simulcast would be amazing for commercial DMR. But, like AES, those 2 features are what is protecting the P25 sales which has tremendous profit margin. I think very few dealers would take the risk of deploying DMR simulcast. FB
    I can tell you that MSI is very protective of their P-25 monopoly. We have implemented an LCP system where, from day one, we wanted console presence with "core to core" connectivity (not wireline radio crap), to our Astro 25 system and a systems engineer demonstrated that it is possible. Yet when it came time for a project, the brakes were slammed on with excuses ranging from "it's not possible" to "we don't want you to be a beta tester". Oh really. We aren't already paying for the privilege of being a beta tester? Nope, the "sales prevention department" went into high gear just as they do when you start asking for things like DMR simulcast, AES-256 encryption for TRBO, etc.

    If they were to support this level of integration, no reason to buy $2500-3000 radios for public works or "non-critical" users if a $650 XPR7550 will do, via an interconnected mirrored talk group from Astro 25 to TRBO.

    Everyone else knows the future are interconnected, multi-mode systems that span all forms of LMR, with LTE, all seamlessly passing the packets- after all, it is all IP, and with standardized transport protocol of SIP, anyone should be able to call up anyone else so long as the system can route the packets.

    Radio Activity's product does that, including simulcast DMR, NXDN, P-25 and analog for a fraction of the inflated prices. To think that an entire Kairos RF subsite can be had for less than a single GTR8000 is indicative of where the market is going. Hopefully, JVC Kenwood will invest and support Radio Activity and not crush it like MSI did with Vertex-Standard (I think the SPD went into overdrive when EVX Link began to take foothold in the education market. Why buy a low cost radio gateway when we can make you buy repeaters and expensive gateway hardware, along with project implementation costs that triple the prices?)

    I'd love to see more systems evolve like Kairos. Harris is including BeON servers with every P-25 core they sell, one just has to buy the client licenses.

    The WAVE business model is absurdly overpriced. I can accomplish the same goal with a $50 ROIP interface, a donor radio, and a desktop computer with Zello.
    Your streaming makes me AES-256. Keep it up and you'll soon have nothing to listen to.

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