V1 RF Board Pics

jperaino24

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I always thought that Made In America was a good thing! After seeing these pics, I'm not so sure!
 

jperaino24

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I can understand Jon's comment about the boards he had made here where the company 'was stretched to the limit of tolerance and the ones made off shore were no problem at all meeting the sprcs.
 

elantra04

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This is completely unacceptable. I got my G2 back from repair but after seeing this, I am strongly considering asking for a full refund. I really don't want to own this thing, when after a year, it goes kaput and I'm out $500+.
 

Panda08

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Thanks for posting those nice photos!
dumb questions... could someone dumb-down what the issues are? It is dirty or sloppy? Is this something machine-made or done by hand?
Sorry , I have more curiosity than knowledge about what we looking at.
 

RedRocket

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Rev F also looks like this. Not to the same extent but still some hand soldered stuff, bodges, etc. Theres a missing component that looks like they ripped it off of the board using pliers.
View attachment 145405 The horn also had LOTS of metal shavings stuck to the radar absorbant rubber pads (those specks are metal, not dust)
It does look like the solder was barely molten (jagged peaks remaining on both circuit pads) as the part was yanked off.

Amateur's at board repair/soldering !- Yikes !!
 

Heywood

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This is completely unacceptable. I got my G2 back from repair but after seeing this, I am strongly considering asking for a full refund. I really don't want to own this thing, when after a year, it goes kaput and I'm out $500+.

I actually really agree with you, but this thread probably isn’t the place for it.

I wholeheartedly think that you should start a separate thread to gauge the responses and hear opinions on the pictures/ findings submitted..... just not in this thread.

edit.
BTW.
If you do start a separate thread... and please put it in general because if it’s in the V1 thread...Jon won’t be able to offer any opinions or insights if he wanted to.
 
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Nine_C1

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This is completely unacceptable. I got my G2 back from repair but after seeing this, I am strongly considering asking for a full refund. I really don't want to own this thing, when after a year, it goes kaput and I'm out $500+.

I think this is getting a little out of hand.

You're seeing on the fly revisions with some hand soldering and resin. Doesn't mean it's bad......just not aesthetically pleasing. If those are cold solder joints then the detector is already tits up...…..but it's not tits up is it? You can't see the forest for the trees in these pics…….look at the amazing amount of devices and RF circuitry designed into these boards. It's a very high quality design, the cosmetic appearance will catch up.

Jon...........the early production runs of the R3 were even uglier albeit a simpler design. I saw them prior to release and even commented to Tom that Uniden had some serious cleaning up to do, nevertheless, they still blew everything else out of the water at the time.

@elantra04..........if you're repaired V1 doesn't catch fire or explode within the next 12 months then it's not likely to in the next five years. Regardless, I've yet to see a repair charge from Valentine that amounted to $500 for a failed unit...….more like $50 at most.

In any case, the V1Gen2 kicks ass doing what it's supposed to do and looks terrific on the side your supposed to be looking at. :laugh:
 

Jon at Radenso

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If those are cold solder joints then the detector is already tits up...…..but it's not tits up is it?

The detector in my pics was tits up.

Jon...........the early production runs of the R3 were even uglier albeit a simpler design.

The R3 is a simpler design?

Would love to see some pics of problematic R3 PCBs. I'm a glutton for PCB carnage - equal opportunity! I opened up a R3 to try to find some other juicy pics, but the Uniden PCBs looked absolutely and meticulously on point - with a far more complicated layout.
 
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Heywood

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I think this is getting a little out of hand.

You're seeing on the fly revisions with some hand soldering and resin. Doesn't mean it's bad......just not aesthetically pleasing. If those are cold solder joints then the detector is already tits up...…..but it's not tits up is it? You can't see the forest for the trees in these pics…….look at the amazing amount of devices and RF circuitry designed into these boards. It's a very high quality design, the cosmetic appearance will catch up.

Jon...........the early production runs of the R3 were even uglier albeit a simpler design. I saw them prior to release and even commented to Tom that Uniden had some serious cleaning up to do, nevertheless, they still blew everything else out of the water at the time.

@elantra04..........if you're repaired V1 doesn't catch fire or explode within the next 12 months then it's not likely to in the next five years. Regardless, I've yet to see a repair charge from Valentine that amounted to $500 for a failed unit...….more like $50 at most.

In any case, the V1Gen2 kicks ass doing what it's supposed to do and looks terrific on the side your supposed to be looking at. :laugh:
Hmm. I don’t know.
looking at the Uniden board.... it sure doesn’t look like a simpler design. A little more intricate and precise with little room for error.

Also in the added solder.... are you suggesting that the addition, smoothing and other modifications done by hand, will have absolutely no effect on the performance?

So a person that has a board like these, compared to a board that’s robotically manufactured, without modification, repeatedly... where tolerances and QA of the traces and joints are near exact to each other .... should be ok with paying the same $$$ for a product that may, or may not, perform to the same level? Or last?

We have a saying in my trade. “Ugly isn’t a weld failure”

You could be right. Just because it’s ugly, doesn’t mean it won’t perform.... but I’m talking about pipe welding vs adding or subtracting solder on things that have to do with RF.

Looking at the variety of testing results, can we be sure that the results can be an accurate description of the performance considering the amount of modifications that seem to be taking place ..... by human hands which can make mistakes.

Like metal chips in the horns rubber... for example.
So I wouldn’t dismiss @elantra04 concern or disappointment.

If NineC1 paid $500, elantra04 paid $500, and Heywood paid $500.... Heywood better not get the dog in the group because a tech added a little too much solder or didn’t use enough heat.

It would be real interesting to line up 10 V1G2’s against the same gun on the same course with these modifications.
 

Nine_C1

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The detector in my pics was tits up.



The R3 is a simpler design?

Would love to see some pics of problematic R3 PCBs. I'm a glutton for PCB carnage - equal opportunity! I opened up a R3 to try to find some other juicy pics, but the Uniden PCBs looked absolutely and meticulously on point - with a far more complicated layout.

Well, there you go. Just send it across the street and get her fixed.

How's this for an ugly R3? And you call this a more complicated layout? I won't bother counting the devices, but the V1Gen2 has two RF boards and loaded with a shit ton more ICs and LNAs (oh right, the R3 has none).

My first R3 was a dog as was my first R7. The R3 I have now is a keeper. I'll be sure to use it when I send my V1 in for repair.....when it breaks that is. If it breaks that is.

1587533669665.png
 

Heywood

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Well, there you go. Just send it across the street and get her fixed.

How's this for an ugly R3? And you call this a more complicated layout? I won't bother counting the devices, but the V1Gen2 has two RF boards and loaded with a shit ton more ICs and LNAs (oh right, the R3 has none).

My first R3 was a dog as was my first R7. The R3 I have now is a keeper. I'll be sure to use it when I send my V1 in for repair.....when it breaks that is. If it breaks that is.

View attachment 145418
Lol.
That is pretty gross.
I see it’s from June 30 2016. Is that a production board or beta??
 

Heywood

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They must of really cleaned it up. The pictures of Jon’s board reads June 21 2017.

edit. Sorry I made a mistake.
The DSP RD board says June 21 2017. The DSP RF says July 13 2018.
 
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Jon at Radenso

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Well, there you go. Just send it across the street and get her fixed.

How's this for an ugly R3? And you call this a more complicated layout? I won't bother counting the devices, but the V1Gen2 has two RF boards and loaded with a shit ton more ICs and LNAs (oh right, the R3 has none).

My first R3 was a dog as was my first R7. The R3 I have now is a keeper. I'll be sure to use it when I send my V1 in for repair.....when it breaks that is. If it breaks that is.

View attachment 145418

The only thing I see wrong in that pic is that the microstrips are worn for some reason (maybe taking a prototype apart and putting it back together so many times). Anyway, it's a pre-release prototype not a shipping unit.

As for complexity, I think you are confusing quantity of passive components for complexity. The only remotely complex thing in the V1G2 is the FPGA, but they used pretty much the smallest and simplest one on the market. There are more traces on the tiny dsp board of the R3 than are in the entire V1G2. The R3 does a lot of things using more sophisticated ICs (like their demod monolithic) that the V1 does with entire analog layouts, which take up a lot of board space, requires a lot of components, and is less effective. For example, when you do your demod in a monolithic IC, it's 50ohms in 50ohms out. You can't screw it up, provided you can program it right. When you do it in analog, not only does it take up lots of board space, but you can have impedance matching problems - which leads to you then having to hand-tune things :)

More passive components is not necessarily more complex - you can have a board with 45,000 resistors, capacitors, and a SAW filter on it that is 2 square miles and it will still be a less complex layout than a 2 square inch digitizer with a high speed ADC and DSP chip on it. The digitizer layout will have a beautiful simplicity to it when viewed with the naked eye due to less components on the board, but actually laying it out, routing the traces, etc, is incredibly complex because you're dealing with taking an impedance matched IF at the input of the board designing high speed digitial in a tiny area.

There are analog guys and there are digital guys...but guys who can design a high performance board that is both (which is basically what a digitizer is) are badasses.
 
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Nine_C1

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Not exactly fair to compare a prerelease board to one that VR actually charged good money for.

What would be unfair would be RDF members coaxed into dumping an excellent detector based on pics of early revision PCBs. VR charged good money...….for a Great detector. Their warranty service has been remarkable during the shutdown but I'm sure they'd be happy to refund your money if you are displeased by the appearance of your solder joints.

Your being herded in case you didn't realize it.
Post automatically merged:

The only thing I see wrong in that pic is that the microstrips are worn for some reason (maybe taking a prototype apart and putting it back together so many times). Anyway, it's a pre-release prototype not a shipping unit.

As for complexity, I think you are confusing quantity of passive components for complexity. The only remotely complex thing in the V1G2 is the FPGA, but they used pretty much the smallest and simplest one on the market. There are more traces on the tiny dsp board of the R3 than are in the entire V1G2. The R3 does a lot of things using more sophisticated ICs (like their demod monolithic) that the V1 does with entire analog layouts, which take up a lot of board space, requires a lot of components, and is less effective. For example, when you do your demod in a monolithic IC, it's 50ohms in 50ohms out. You can't screw it up, provided you can program it right. When you do it in analog, not only does it take up lots of board space, but you can have impedance matching problems - which leads to you then having to hand-tune things :)

More passive components is not necessarily more complex - you can have a board with 45,000 resistors, capacitors, and a SAW filter on it that is 2 square miles and it will still be a less complex layout than a 2 square inch digitizer with a high speed ADC and DSP chip on it. The digitizer layout will have a beautiful simplicity to it when viewed with the naked eye due to less components on the board, but actually laying it out, routing the traces, etc, is incredibly complex because you're dealing with taking an impedance matched IF at the input of the board designing high speed digitial in a tiny area.

There are analog guys and there are digital guys...but guys who can design a high performance board that is both (which is basically what a digitizer is) are badasses.

What it really boils down to is how it performs, and right now, the V1Gen2 just romps all over the Unidens from my personal experience. And that's really how I evaluate a detector..........how well it performs for me. So I'll take the 45,000 resistors, caps and saw over 2 square miles (it actually seems pretty small for that) over that more sophisticated R3...…...because it does so much more so much better...…..for me.

When you can do better then I'll buy it. If...........I can afford it.
 
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Jon at Radenso

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What would be unfair would be RDF members coaxed into dumping an excellent detector based on pics of early revision PCBs. VR charged good money...….for a Great detector. Their warranty service has been remarkable during the shutdown but I'm sure they'd be happy to refund your money if you are displeased by the appearance of your solder joints.

Your being herded in case you didn't realize it.

I agree that it's a bit much to return a perfectly functional detector based on the quality of some solder joints - I don't think anyone was suggesting that.

However, ripping open these detectors and looking at how they work is what enthusiasts do. At least, it's what we used to do around here until a bunch of the more technical members got banned or stopped coming to the forum. When Vortex did a teardown of the Redline EX was he herding people? When he did a teardown of the OG Redline and talking about bonded vs. packaged LNAs was that herding people? No, it was enthusiasts having a technical discussion.

For some reason (likely warranty related), he stopped doing detailed teardowns which created a big knowledge void. If you remember, nobody even knew if the R3 had a DSP board until I did a teardown and posted pics.

Notice I didn't make any comments whatsoever in my OP - I merely posted pictures. Others with technical knowledge commented on them. If you don't want consumers commenting on poor assembly, well, I'm not sure what to tell you other than to increase your QA.
 
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