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Author Topic: Looking at getting a new HF radio  (Read 2458 times)
KC6SLA
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Posts: 35




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« on: November 12, 2012, 07:35:09 AM »

I am thinking about getting a new/ good used HF radio to replace my Icom IC 735. I don't want to spend a ton of money but would like some of the advantages of the newer rigs (like DSP). My current radio seems to have a noisy receive so it makes it hard to hear other people at time so a quieter receive would be nice. I have looked at the Icom 718 which seems to be similar but I don't know if would be much, if any, better. I was also thinking about getting the IC 746.
I am looking for peoples thoughts. I am for the most part a casual operator but have thought about getting into contesting at some point (maybe). I am kinda partial to Icom but am open to any radio.
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K1WJ
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Posts: 460




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« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2012, 07:46:49 AM »

Do not get the IC-718 - it has alot of noise on receive.
Look into:
Kenwood TS-590
Yaesu FT-950 or FT-450
If you must have an Icom - IC-7200

Of these, the Kenwwod technically is the best overall.

73 K1WJ David Cool
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KG6BRG
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Posts: 119




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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2012, 07:51:47 AM »

I agree with the last post, the 718 has a very noisy RX, the 735 is a lot quieter I've had both.  I replaced the 735 with a ft-450 by Yaesu.  I'm very happy with it.  It has a very good receive that I can listen to for hours.  I have never had a Yaesu ft-950 but imagine it's very nice too, although more money.  cheers.  PS.  I paid $450.00 used for my ft-450 for comparison, plain jane version with no ATU.
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K6LO
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Posts: 226




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« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2012, 08:13:50 AM »

Nothing wrong with itching to get a new HF rig, but the '735 has a pretty nice receiver. To get the most out of either it or whatever new rig you choose, I'd suggest tending to your local noise issue first.  Perhaps eliminating local sources, using a dedicated receiving antenna, or both.  One of the MFJ noise canceling boxes is a consideration too. 

73 - Luke
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KC6SLA
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Posts: 35




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« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2012, 08:52:49 AM »

Well if the IC 735 has a good receiver, then can anyone help me with te noise I am hearing? I am running a Hustler 4BTV vertical that I just overhauled and added radials so now I have 16. It is ground mounted as well. All power lines in my area are underground. I don't recall having this much noise in the past. I just figured the radio was getting old. I have read that some people have had issues with poor solder connections in the IC 735. Over all I like the radio. I just thought it might be time for a newer one with all the noise I am hearing. It registers around S5.
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K7KBN
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Posts: 2825




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« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2012, 09:41:04 AM »

First, try the old trick of powering the radio from a battery and shutting off the breakers to your house, one at a time, and see if one or more affect the noise level.  If so, check every appliance/light/doodad on that particular circuit.  There are a lot of noise-generating items in houses today:  light dimmers, heating/AC controllers, even washer/dryer controllers.  Isolate the source of the noise and take measures there.  If the problem's not in your house, then you'll need to get something like a portable radio and "sniff" around the neighborhood to see if you can isolate it to a particular point.
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
W1JKA
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Posts: 1809




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« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2012, 10:52:19 AM »

    Along with KBN suggestions try a different antenna if possible(dipole),depending on your particular ground conditions a vertical may be inherently noisier than a horizontal wire.Also as you said,check for obvious loose solder connections. You have a decent radio,so hopefully your noise problem will be something obvious and an easy fix.  Jim
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LA9XSA
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Posts: 376




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« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2012, 11:15:29 AM »

Have you tried turning off your pre amp on the lower bands?
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N6AJR
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Posts: 9921




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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2012, 01:13:47 PM »

look at a used orion from ten tec...
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AC4WY
Member

Posts: 10




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« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2012, 06:37:12 AM »

Do yourself a favor and have a look at the IC-7200.  Wink
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AG6WT
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Posts: 474




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« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2012, 03:47:50 PM »

Well if the IC 735 has a good receiver, then can anyone help me with te noise I am hearing? I am running a Hustler 4BTV vertical that I just overhauled and added radials so now I have 16. It is ground mounted as well. All power lines in my area are underground. I don't recall having this much noise in the past. I just figured the radio was getting old. I have read that some people have had issues with poor solder connections in the IC 735. Over all I like the radio. I just thought it might be time for a newer one with all the noise I am hearing. It registers around S5.

Kyle,

Before you go out and get another rig because of the noise, it it probably worth while to figure out if the noise is actually from the rig, your antenna system, a neighbor's new electronic toy, something from the utility company, etc. If it's not the rig and you buy a new one, you may find you have wasted $1500 for the same poor Rx.

IC-735 are known to be pretty durable so I wouldn't suspect it first. But an easy test is just to disconnect it from the antenna and put it on a dummy load. If the noise goes from S5 down to faint hiss, it's not the rig. If the rig is ok, start adding components one by one. Perhaps in rewiring things, you've introduced a big ground loop. If everything still looks ok, try powering off a battery and shutting of the breakers to see if the source is in your home. If the noise is still there start snooping around with a portable radio. Perhaps one of your neighbors have bought something like a cordless drill with a charger that produces load, broadband hash.
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