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Thread: Things we'd like to see fixed by Motorola

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    Default Things we'd like to see fixed by Motorola

    One thing I've always wanted to do is communicate with the Motorola software and product engineers. But this is not possible, as they're isolated from the public, which sucks for us.

    However, Motorola does visit our website. So perhaps we can pass suggestions and information along to their development team(s).

    Here's my list of tweaks I'd like to see applied to your products, to improve functionality and usefulness:

    - ASTRO25 CPS should be modified to allow for more scanlist talkgroup members. Our members have managed to tweak CPS to allow for 15 (total) members, instead of 10. The APX supports 50 scanlist members. I'm confident with new firmware/codeplug partition changes, you could accomplish the same thing in ASTRO25-family radios. Please realize some of your customers DO require more than 10 talkgroups in their scanlists'. Those who don't want to use this many scanlist members, don't have to. It's a harmless tweak. Please consider.

    - FPP for 900 MHz should be extended to include the amateur radio band. Repeater inputs stretch from 902-910, and outputs are 925-928. Talkaround is 925-928. Please make this a standard feature. I realize you don't sell to hams directly, but your radios do end up with hams and we would really appreciate it if you did this for us.

    - ASTRO25 portables and the use of the TMS key. TMS is useless. No one uses it. Please update CPS so we can select more than "unprogrammed" or "TMS" for this button. I have modified my own equipment so the TMS button controls the high/low power selection. A firmware update to make this work is not required. Just add op-codes to the list of features accessible by this button. Very simple CPS fix. Just cut and paste the code from the other buttons, to this button. Thanks.

    - Quickcall II for the APX line. PLEASE! The whole purpose of a dual band radio is just that! Many agencies have VHF/UHF QCII pagers for dispatch, and use 700/800 trunking for their response/voice communications. I'd love to be able to use a VHF/700-800 APX instead of carrying around a Minitor and a XTS portable.

    - Too late now, but it would've been nice to see an "auto reset" for the PAGE alert feature on ASTRO-series radios. When they get paged, they beep forever. The ASTRO25 line has the option of auto-reset.

    - Soft ID decode for the ASTRO25 mobile firmware. Currently (with a hack) it only supports encoding of Soft ID.

    - Alternating Radio ID / Soft ID display in ASTRO25 firmware. This way we can still see the Radio ID of a transmitting user. Hard to private call/page someone when all I can see is their Soft ID.

    Thanks for reading!


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    Just a quick note, the FPP on 900 thing won't happen; the radio isn't type accepted to operate outside the commercial 900 band. Ham operation of a commercial radio out-of-the-box will prohibit it from being type accepted, I'm about 99.9% sure of that. Everything else are simple CPS tweaks that won't affect type acceptance.

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    I would like to see an end to the softpot limitations preventing certain modes/features from working on Ham bands. The amateur community is the biggest purchaser of used equipment supporting the future market sales is just common sense and a good business practice.

    I would also like to see a list of dealers so that our membership can buy parts , subscriptions to CPS etc. Perhaps a link at the Motorola main site to a dealership local list. This last item would be very usefull for commercial customers too. It would be real nice if Motorola allowed dealerships to advertise here. Where else are you going to find an informed market of customers?

    If Motorola is truly reading these forums how about a clear statement of their position? Not a big legal document but a simple statment like "we have no problems with what we see" or "we dont like what we see". We all support Motorola and thier products and the reality of the market is that members here are the biggest single private group of users of thier products. Lets all work together to increase sales and establish a good onging support network.
    Last edited by Notarola; Mar 01, 2012 at 04:18 PM.

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    I agree with Notarola. The tuning partition in the ASTRO Spectra Plus, for example, must be tweaked to allow for digi-pot reference in the ham bands. It's currently at 146.00000 (VHF R2) and 450.00000 (UHF 3.5) MHz. This is BS.

    There is an actual value for "lowest referenced tuning value frequency" in the TUNE partition at block 4399, spanning 4 bytes from offsets 0-3. Motorola, if you can shift this down to 440.00000 MHz, people would be very happy. You don't even have to mention it in the firmware release notes; just do it please.

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    Please allow users to update their firmware for bug fixes without having to purchase expensive firmware (ala Quantar) or iButtons (dang near everything else).

    I applaud your decision to allow the APX lines to flash by simply downloading the files from MOL, and you can download firmware for the Astro25 radios directly.. please allow A25 CPS to refresh firmware without an ibutton. I realize XTS3000/MCS etc may be too old for this to be considered, but there are plenty of agencies supporting legacy X series.

    Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha View Post
    Just a quick note, the FPP on 900 thing won't happen; the radio isn't type accepted to operate outside the commercial 900 band. Ham operation of a commercial radio out-of-the-box will prohibit it from being type accepted, I'm about 99.9% sure of that. Everything else are simple CPS tweaks that won't affect type acceptance.
    Actually, as long as the 900 MHz radio doesn't operate in the ham bands via FPP out of the box, it shouldn't have to go through type acceptance again. Motorola could issue new CPS with the band limits expanded, and include a check box in CPS to enable FPP in the ham bands. That should avoid having to go through type acceptance again. Of course, VHF radios are type accepted from 136-174 MHz which includes the ham bands already.

    Motorola, are you listening? Please open up the features provided by these radios. You will not only make them more usable, but create a larger used equipment market for cities and counties who want to upgrade to APX radios.
    Last edited by Number 6; Mar 10, 2012 at 01:20 AM.

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    As suggested by another member being able to assign a name to the personality in the personality/trunking trees would be a great helper. There are many of us who have to program multiple agancies into multiple radios/groups and this feature would save a lot of looking back to confirm the personaily number for the assigned name in the zone screen.

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    My biggest pet peeve is the inability to have multiple mdc users with the same mdc id in Astro25 firmware.

    If department A uses an mdc id of 1 for car 1 and agency B uses mdc id 1 for pump 1, you will not be able to differentiate between them using an mdc alias list.

    Even if you set up different call id alias lists and slave each list to a different mdc system and each mdc system to a separate personality for each department, it will still not work.

    The APX has no problem handling this so why not the astro25 firmware?

    I'm currently running at R14 firmware so perhaps this has been corrected in a later release. With the ticking timebomb firmware Motorola has been releasing, I've been afraid to upgrade.

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    Quote Originally Posted by XPR8300 View Post
    Please allow users to update their firmware for bug fixes without having to purchase expensive firmware (ala Quantar) or iButtons (dang near everything else).

    I applaud your decision to allow the APX lines to flash by simply downloading the files from MOL, and you can download firmware for the Astro25 radios directly.. please allow A25 CPS to refresh firmware without an ibutton. I realize XTS3000/MCS etc may be too old for this to be considered, but there are plenty of agencies supporting legacy X series.

    Thanks!
    I'll second this. I applaud Ma M for doing this with the APX line, but it's really absurd to require an iButton and subscription to fix bugs in the Astro 25 line. Kenwood, Icom and Vertex make firmware available for free to anyone who has a dealer account. Keeps alot of radios out of service centers and makes for happy customers, and less equipment floating around with buggy and ancient firmware.

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    How about making the APX CPS easier and more user friendly. Why not make it the same as the ASTRO25 CPS, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

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    The APX CPS is written in a different language (computer) than is the ASTRO25 CPs. This accounts for some of the differances. Also It looks like the one group dosnt talk to the other .

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    Here is something else to add to the list:

    The APX Migration tool sucks. It is slow and clunky. Just ran a large codeplug through it with a mix of trunking and conventional and had to fix 683 errors before proceeding with tweaking. How about something better?

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    True the program isnt doing something overly complex. a simple excell style spread sheet conversion routine would handle all the fields nicly.

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    Here is another APX CPS suggestion - the ability to auto fill the top display name from the normal channel name. Having to put it in twice (when they are short names) is a PIA.

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    Another APX thing: (not specific to APX..)

    - SECURE RX ONLY. I don't want to hear clear transmissions.
    - Ability to FPP CKR numbers, into my key slots. Why reprogram the radio for the sake of provisioning a CKR #? Retarded.

    I'm sure I'll think of more

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    Has anyone with connections heard if Moto will ever offer QuickCall II for the APX line?

    This is really quite important for me -- and I'm sure other customers, too.

    Let's see here:

    - All QCII paging is VHF or UHF (I've never seen a REAL 800 MHz QCII setup, besides a TRS simulcast)
    - Most public safety TRSs are on 700/800
    - The APX is a dual-band radio, designed for public safety. Makes sense to monitor QCII VHF/UHF pager, then respond on 700/800 TRS.
    - Personnel want to carry as little crap on their belts and off-duty, as possible.

    The solution: QCII on the APX! The ASTRO25 line supports it, so why not the APX? I don't care if it's "ancient" or "TRSs support group paging/calling". The fact is, a huge amount of PS personnel still use QCII paging!

    /Rant

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    The APX roadmap released many years ago showed Quickcall support coming later this year.

    I'd like to see it as well. Hopefully they haven't abandoned it.

    Right now I've got an XPR doing Quickcall for me.
    Cyrus

    Bubbles: I'd like to see that Red Blue Green c***sucker put one of those together, duct-tapin' it.

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    That's good news

    And for the record...and I'm just being realistic here, I really would like to see group paging get used more on TRSs. The only problem with that, is it's VERY difficult to monitor with a secondary receiver (requires codeplug info) and only newer radios support "voice mute", which mutes all traffic except for Private Calls/Call Alerts.

    Conventional ASTRO alerting is easier to use, but again -- not really practical or possible with a scanner radio. QCII for the win

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    My biggest complaints are thus:

    O3 Control Head: Allow the Orange Emergency Button to be programmed as Nuisance Delete. Works on the O5, why not the HHCH?

    Also with regard to the O3 (and possibly the O5, can't remember at the moment), I seem to lose my button function assignments
    every time I read the radio to edit some thing or other. ALWAYS have to reset my functions. Very annoying. This last one seems to
    be such an obvious thing that would affect LOTS of users, I wonder if I've missed something or done something wrong? I gotta believe
    M would have fielded hundreds of complaints by this point...(I've had this radio for almost 3 years; suffered in silence till now...)

    Oh, yeah-- I second the motion to allow the H/L button do Low Power on the W4!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scratchy
    Also with regard to the O3 (and possibly the O5, can't remember at the moment), I seem to lose my button function assignments
    every time I read the radio to edit some thing or other. ALWAYS have to reset my functions. Very annoying. This last one seems to
    be such an obvious thing that would affect LOTS of users, I wonder if I've missed something or done something wrong? I gotta believe
    M would have fielded hundreds of complaints by this point...(I've had this radio for almost 3 years; suffered in silence till now...)
    Strange, I've never had that problem with my O3 or O5 radios.
    Cyrus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mars View Post
    Has anyone with connections heard if Moto will ever offer QuickCall II for the APX line?
    Just found this in the newest ECAT


    Common Software Features Supported By


    H37 "SMARTNET"/H38 "SmartZone"
    "Analog Operation"(Q241) "ASTRO Digital"(Q806) "ASTRO Digital"(H38/Q806/Q361) "TDMA"(QA00580AA)
    Non-Project 25
    (3600 Baud)
    Non-Project 25
    (3600 Baud)
    Project 25
    (9600 Baud)
    TDMA OPERATION
    RADIO WIDE FEATURES
    Maximum Modes
    ASTRO Digital APX 7000 Top Display 1200 1200 1200 1200
    ASTRO Digital APX 7000 Dual Display 2000 2000 2000 2000
    Analog and Digital Operation Yes Yes Yes Yes
    12.5/20/25 KHz Programmable Channels Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Secure Capable No Yes (Digital Only) Yes (Digital Only) Yes (Digital Only)
    One Touch Operation Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Real Time Clock Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Surveillance Mode Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Keypad Lock Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Radio Lock Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Smart Battery Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Radio Wide Transmit Inhibit Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Time Out Timer Yes Yes Yes Yes
    FLASHport Yes Yes Yes Yes
    ANALOG CONVENTIONAL FEATURES
    Conventional Features are additional radio wide features beyond those specified above.
    CSQ/PL/DPL Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Dual Priority Channel Scan Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Adaptive Power Control No Yes Yes Yes
    Repeater/Talkaround Operation Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Scan (Auto, Pre-programmed, Operator Selectable) Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Smart PTT Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Monitor Yes Yes Yes Yes
    DTMF Tone Generation Yes Yes Yes Yes
    DTMF Signaling Future Future Future Future
    Quick-Call Signaling
    Future Future Future Future
    DIGITAL CONVENTIONAL SIGNALING FEATURES
    These features are APCO Project 25 Conventional Interoperable Features when used in the ASTRO Digital CAI Mode (Q806).
    Unaddressed Voice Call (Dispatch Call) Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Talk Group Call Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Group Call Alert™ Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Talk Group Identification (TGID) Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Selective Call (Individual Voice Call) MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Selective Call Decode (Individual Voice Call) MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    PTT ID (Individual Identification) MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Call Alert Encode/Decode MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Emergency Alarm w/Channel Revert & Ack. MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Telephone Interconnect Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Manual Phone Number Entry Dual Display Only Dual Display Only Dual Display Only Dual Display Only
    Selective Radio Inhibit MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Radio Check MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Status/Message MDC-1200 Only Yes Yes Yes
    Trunking Type II Only Features
    Maximum Number of Trunked Systems-20 Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Talkgroup Calls Yes Yes Yes Yes
    PTT ID Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Call Alert Encode/Decode Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Analog/Digital Dual Mode Scan No Yes Yes Yes
    Failsoft by Talkgroup Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Telephone Interconnect Encode/Decode Yes Yes Yes Yes
    System Wide Call (Receive Only) Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Selective Radio Inhibit Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Priority Monitor Scan Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Dynamic Regrouping Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Status/Message Yes Yes Status Only Status Only
    Private/Enhanced Conversation Encode/Decode Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Remote Monitor/Radio Trace Yes Yes Yes Yes
    Reprogram Request Yes Yes Yes Yes


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    This is good news. I suggest Motorola hurry the hell up already. This feature is extremely urgent for many services. I even spoke with a random person at Dayton International Airport who does comms in the Rockies, and he also mentioned QCII support as being important. So it's not just me.

    Let's go. Quick dicking around already, Moto.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cyrus View Post
    Strange, I've never had that problem with my O3 or O5 radios.
    The only non-standard thing in the equation I can think of is that because the O3 is my car radio, I program it with
    VMWare on a Macbook (w/ a USB-serial adapter). I'll pull it out and throw it on the bench and see what happens when
    I get the chance....

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    It sounds to me like maybe the cps is loading defaults for those values for some reason when it unpacks, was it originally a 03?

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    As far as I know, to my knowledge, yes. This one's never been messed with.

    If you read the radio, it resets them so I start with the last cp edit to save time now.