From an email posted to Baen's Bar Honorverse dated September 24, 2004:

Recon LACs

    Recon LACs. The idea here is to take a standard LAC, strip out all or most of its offensive weapons capability, and use the freed up volume to mount more capable tactical computers or even the equivalent of a complete CIC. A few of these would then be deployed aboard each CLAC, and when the recon drones were deployed, the recon LACs would accompany them towards the enemy. The intention is to put a full capability FTL com close enough to the recon drones to real-time sensor information to the intruding fleet or task force. This is to overcome the perceived bandwidth crunch of the drones' FTL coms. As the tactical employment of drones is being visualized by the proponents of this scheme, the restricted bandwidth of the telemetry pipeline more or less requires the drones to compress, strip away nonessential information, and generally develop a sort of tunnel vision (within the parameters provided by the ships which deployed the drones in the first place) in order to prioritize what's going to be transmitted through the squeezed down funnel of its com. What the recon LAC is supposed to do is to put a complete tactical crew closer to the drones, where they can analyze the data and use the greater bandwidth of their more capable com to send a fully developed picture of the tactical situation back to their superiors. It's also been suggested that putting a completely separate tac crew into the mix might "free up" a set of eyes not constrained by the tactical focus of the flagship which could then be used to help avoid nasty surprises.


    Recon LACs. If you're the Havenites, then you have no option but to do something like this. If you're the Manties, then you don't want to go anywhere near it. Let's look at the bandwidth the recon drones are obtaining. In case it's escaped your notice, there's been a steady and very steep improvement curve operating here for the Manticorans from the very beginning. I'm not going to go a lot further with that explanation at this particular time, since I don't want to be giving away goodies which may be turning up in books sometime soon, but the bandwidth issue is not a sufficient reason to put a manned vessel into a hostile force's weapons envelope. And that completely ignores the tactical issues involved in the lesser degree of stealthiness of even a manned the LAC when compared to a ghost rider recon drone.