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Thread: Firmware Version Capabilities

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    Default Firmware Version Capabilities

    I have seen various versions of Firmware prefixes. A, I and N what do they mean and what capabilities do they have, such as P-25, trunking etc. Is there a list?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Mars View Post
    Thanks Mars, you da man.

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    Neo No Longer Registered

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    Quote Originally Posted by radioman2013
    Thanks Mars, you da man.
    Halfway through the production of the Astro family of radios, Motorola's supplier of the DSP IC's discontinued and then updated the DSP to a newer version.

    "I" DSP are the early DSP IC's
    "N" DSP are the later DSP IC's

    You will notice many early production Astro Sabers have the "I" DSP. Then Moto switched to the newer DSP IC's which is the "N" version. Every XTS3000 I've seen has a "N" DSP.

    I've never been able to tell an audio difference from an I or N DSP.

    Someone on radio reference said the "I" DSP was "international" and the "N" DSP was USA only. That is total hogwash.

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    People on Radio Reference aren't the brightest bunch. I wouldn't assume anything I read from that place is accurate, unless it was posted by one of the regular engineers who sometimes contribute there. And even then, engineers don't know everything -- but I respect their education and experience.

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    Upman is an engineer allegedly, and he is one of the dumbest members. The 396XT being an upgrade from the 396T when the only change was a fruity RGB back light really turned me off of Uniden and ultimately lead to my banning from Radio Reference.

    That company abandoned the T customers after promises to fix shortcomings were nullified.

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    ****ing RetardReference.

    The only place where you can post up an academically vetted whitepaper, published as part of a PHD thesis, subsequently accepted and vetted by 5 PHD holders in Cryptography, and end up with a bunch of smartarses arguing that your research is invalid because they think they know better. All this without them having even read the paper in question.

    Yes - **** you Lindsay Blanton III. You have singlehandedly attracted more morons to this hobby than any other person.

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    Blanton is also personally responsible for the encryption now used by many departments/agencies.

    If Blanton is all about scanning, why does he list Connect Tones and System IDs for trunking systems? You don't need those to program a scanner. I laugh at the way his mods discourage users from programming illegitimate radios onto systems, yet they're the ones publishing the information to get onto those systems in the first place.

    Texas Liberal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mars View Post
    Blanton is also personally responsible for the encryption now used by many departments/agencies.

    If Blanton is all about scanning, why does he list Connect Tones and System IDs for trunking systems? You don't need those to program a scanner. I laugh at the way his mods discourage users from programming illegitimate radios onto systems, yet they're the ones publishing the information to get onto those systems in the first place.

    Texas Liberal.
    Not to pile on and say "I think so too", but... Damn straight, I think so too. I have heard first hand from several agencies that they pushed crypto after realizing how many RadioRef-tards could hear them.

    Thankfully some of the local DB admins have an informal filter for keeping sensitive things out of the DB that are better left unsaid. Anyone with a moderate amount of brains can find these details of course, but not most of the readership there.

    No thanks Lindsay.

    P.S.: Wholesale publishing of other group's work without attribution by calling it public domain information, then asserting copyright is another top-notch move.

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    I don't think RR did anything more than just accelerate the use of encryption. M and the other have been drooling over the possibility of selling their products based on being able to provide encryption while going digital. Going digital is not a 2013 mandate, maybe a 2020 mandate, but has been the excuse by most agencies who want encryption to get it as part of this update to their systems.

    Now on to one of my original questions, I have a few Astro Sabers with 01.01.xxx Firmware and NO DSP when read. I am assuming that these radios are VSLEP since they talk to each other, but I cannot get them to talk to a P-25 programmed radio or my 2670 M monitor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by radioman2013 View Post
    I don't think RR did anything more than just accelerate the use of encryption. M and the other have been drooling over the possibility of selling their products based on being able to provide encryption while going digital. Going digital is not a 2013 mandate, maybe a 2020 mandate, but has been the excuse by most agencies who want encryption to get it as part of this update to their systems.

    Now on to one of my original questions, I have a few Astro Sabers with 01.01.xxx Firmware and NO DSP when read. I am assuming that these radios are VSLEP since they talk to each other, but I cannot get them to talk to a P-25 programmed radio or my 2670 M monitor.
    Wow, I've never even see a radio which doesn't report its DSP version. And version 1 host firmware is the very beginning.

    Your vocon board is likely only 512K, but it can still be upgraded for IMBE (CAI) operation. If you're interested in upgrading, send Neo or myself a message.

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    Your vocon board is likely only 512K, but it can still be upgraded for IMBE (CAI) operation. If you're interested in upgrading, send Neo or myself a message.[/QUOTE] Definitely, NEO did my other 2 and they work flawlessly.

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    Beware if the radio has VERY EARLY 256K VOCONS! They have rev "A" part numbers, the 512K's stared with suffix "B". The 256K VOCONS will BRICK if you try to upgrade them to anything newer than version 1-2, and they will be come completely useless and unrecoverable. I have a bag of about 10 rev "A" 256K VOCONS, 5 mobile and 5 portable or so, and they are all totally useless except for parts picking...

    Just saying, you might want to double check, and make sure it's not an "A", otherwise it will go from somewhat useful to totally useless if you try to upgrade it or do anything other than just program and use it.

    The other problem with the "A" rev VOCONS is they have a different VISAR-style interconnect between the VOCON and the RF deck, there was no interposer (pin rack between the connectors) there were just 2 mating parts male and female, not a double-female and interposer like they are now, so if you upgrade the VOCON to a 512K or 1 Meg, you will have to replace the RF deck as well!

  14. #14
    tim No Longer Registered

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    Hey Mars,

    I've read in several places that a 512K Vocon won't do P25.

    Is this an untrue statement? (obviously you have figured out a way for a 512K to do P25).

    Special magic? Both Spectras and Sabers?

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    tim, the 512K Saber/Spectra will not do ASTRO25 Trunking (9600bps). That's really the only limitation. There are other missing features such as TX AGC and Soft ID Decode, but 512K radios will definitely play nice on ASTRO CAI conventional and 3600bps trunking.

    Whomever is going around saying 512K radios can't do digital is a retard. That is all. Please read the guide for more info.

  16. #16
    tim No Longer Registered

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    Excellent read.

    Thanks!!

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    I made this earlier post regarding F/W, but no one has taken a stab at an answer yet... Anyone?

    How do you determine which updates/fixes/improvements can be applied via FlashZap and which ones need the full iButton setup?
    Is it as simple as saying defect-fixes will get processed but not new/enhanced features?

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    We can't exactly say for sure, but things that require codeplug changes will not work if upgraded via the FZ method. So in general bug fixes should work, but new features will not.

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    Fair answer. Thank you, sir!

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    When you do the "dirty" upgrade aka "FlashZap" method, you wind up upgrading the HOST and DSP code, and after doing that, if you read the radio, save to disk and reload the codeplug, then write it back to the radio, it will effectively restructure the codeplug the same way it would during a legitimate upgrade. As far as we can tell, the only thing you miss out on when doing it this way is upgrade of the secure UCM code and tuning partitions.

    So, basically you should get all feature enhancements and upgrades as well as bugfixes, excepting any that are directly related to the UCM revision level. The only way to get the UCM upgraded is by using a proper iButton (flashkey) and using a proper UCM upgrade .aif type file in conjunction with a CVN upgrade file. This is the best way to do it if you can, because it upgrades the tuning partition and the UCM as mentioned, and upgrades the codeplug, etc all in one shot.

  21. #21
    Neo No Longer Registered

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    Alpha is 100% correct. Problem with the "dirty FZ" upgrade method is the UCM is never upgraded. If the UCM firmware gets too old vs. the newer host/DSP, it can cause radio problems like random radio reboots. UCM firmware is tied very close to the radios firmware. iButton upgrade is the only way you should be upgrading radios with UCMs.