On Monday, December 6th, CM 6.1 stable was released to the general public.
Shortly after, Tuesday, December 7th, the port for the HTC Hero CDMA was made available by @darchstar.
I had problems with my phone a few days back and had to switch back to the stock 2.1 ROM from Sprint, and of course as soon as I got used to the slowness, the lack of Froyo, and the glitz of the Sense UI again, CM announced the much anticipated stable release of the next gen of their Froyo / Android 2.2 ROM, and I couldn't resist.
My initial thoughts:
Before flashing CM 6.1 stable I flashed the latest radio from Sprint, 2.42.02.10.29. While the verdict is still out on whether this has actually shown any signal improvement, why wouldn't you keep your phone up to date?
I also didn't wait to update the kernel, and after flashing CM 6.1 and before booting from recovery I flashed decad3nce's kernel, 184.108.40.206 #43. This allowed me to use the smartass governor to overclock (and underclock) the Hero's processor which vastly improves the phone's performance and battery life in comparison to what you experience with Sprint's stock Android 2.1 ROM and kernel.
On first boot having my old apps (from the last time I ran CM 6) automatically reinstall from the cloud is simply beautiful. I only had to manually install a few of the custom apps that were not on the market, so my typical TtU (time-to-usable) was cut down from a couple hours to about 30 minutes. DropBox and AppBrain made installing the remaining apps a snap.