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Author Topic: Yaesu FT-950 or Kenwood TS-950S? Any thoughts?  (Read 11319 times)

Posts: 2


« on: November 01, 2010, 07:20:42 AM »

Hi Everyone,

I'm wanting to purchase a new radio - I have an Icom 706MKIIG which I use when portable. 99% of my HF is portable as I live in an apartment in the city and it's terribly noisy here at home. Lots of plasmas, wifi, computers in all the apartments etc..and the general RF noise a city of over 4 million people seem to generate. Also of course antennas are a bit of an issue however I've recently bought a Buddipole and Buddistick and can now do a bit of HF from home with an antenna on my balcony. I was delighted to speak to Sweden last night from a tiny Buddistick on my balcony so HF is not a lost cause here like I thought!

Anyway, I am trying to decide between two radios - the Yaesu FT-950 and the new Kenwood TS-950S. I'm basically after a step up from the 706 and will be shortly moving into a house with a bit of land for antennas (thank GOODNESS!!!  Grin ).

Both radios seem to have pro's and con's...the Yaesu comes standard with the Temperature Controlled Crystal Oscillator, the Kenwood seems to be getting very good reports in that it's a very quiet receiver (in a good way!...I don't mean it's deaf!) and that the DSP is pretty good on it. The Yaesu is big...the Kenwood is more compact etc...

I mainly go portable so you'd probably think that the size of the radio is important but it's not really to me.

I do SSB on 80, 40, 20 etc and a bit of SSTV (digital and analogue) and really enjoy my time out and about doing HF in my local park. But like I say I don't go hiking and carry a tiny radio and battery when I do it. I tend to set up like I'm on a field day! It tends to be a whole day event!

I'd like to hear from anyone that has used BOTH radios I'm considering.

If you check out my website you'll see that 'portable' for me is a bit of an expedition! I have a pretty good 'portable' setup and always have the car having to take a larger radio is not a big deal. I have a large battery and solar panels to keep it topped up - especially a consideration when running a bit of SSTV which can mean longer duty cycles.

I know the Yaesu is a big radio, especially for field use but that really doesn't bother me - I can get a Pelican case to transport it in if need be which will look after it.

I'm especially interested in people's thoughts on noise performance and weaker stations etc... how do the radios compare?

Check out my website URL below if you're wanting to see what I mean by 'portable'. Both radios would do quite well I for what I do however the Kenwood would certainly be a bit smaller.

I'm totally confused and I like the look of both of the radios.

I'd appreciate any thoughts.


Craig - Melbourne, Australia - VK3VCM

Website :
« Last Edit: November 01, 2010, 07:26:51 AM by Craig Meddings » Logged

Posts: 79

« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2010, 05:43:47 PM »

« Last Edit: November 04, 2010, 08:51:56 AM by Curt Krelic » Logged

Posts: 21764

« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2010, 07:06:24 PM »

The new Kenwood rig is not a TS-950S (which dates back to 1990) but a TS-590S.

It's smaller and more capable than the FT-950.  It has three 6-pole roofing filters standard, compared with the two 4-pole filters in the FT-950.  It has several other modern "upgrades" in technology as well, which is to be expected from a radio that is two years newer.

One slick feature is the TS-590S has a USB port, rather than an old fashioned serial port, making it more versatile with modern computer interfaces.

It also has a separate RX antenna port (which the FT-950 doesn't have) and a low-level "transverter output" port for driving external VHF-UHF transverters.

Given the choice, I'd pick the 590S in a heartbeat.

Posts: 2


« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2010, 03:36:31 AM »

yeah sorry I got the numbers back the front!

I went for the's fantastic!!! Thanks for your feedback.


Craig VK3VCM
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