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Author Topic: FT-857D or something else ?  (Read 4392 times)
KD0TLI
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Posts: 42




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« on: December 05, 2012, 05:57:03 PM »

Not to start the Ford/Chevy thing here but I'm really interested in everyone's opinion.

For a new ham on a budget, and can only spring for one good radio.... I was thinking rather than get my old FT-101E rebuilt --and I mean REBUILT,  maybe I should just consider using that money and just get one good radio that I can do lots with. 

I hear alot about the FT-897D - the versatility and portability are very attractive.

Any opinions  ?
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NA4IT
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« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2012, 06:39:13 PM »

The FT-857D is the better deal. If you are going to operate portable for a while, you'll need more battery than the 897 has got. I have run them mobile, and run one as a base station now. Hands down, it is one of the best values out there. I've been on HF SSB, HF AM, HF Digital, VHF and UHF FM. VHF SSB, and VHF Digital. Also have used it as a broadcast receiver (AM, FM, Shortwave). I love it.
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WX7G
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« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2012, 05:11:49 AM »

I have an FT-857D and it's a great radio. New it's $850 at HRO. I also have a TS-480HX and the TS-480SAT model is $930 while the TS-480HX is $1060 at HRO.

The SAT has a built-in antenna tuner while the HX replaces that with a 200 watt PA.

The FT-857 is quite portable, covers 160m-70cm. It is menu intensive.

The TS-480SAT and HX are not so portable and cover 160-6 meters. It is not menu intensive and is easier to operate.
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KD0TLI
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« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2012, 06:19:06 AM »

VERY good info....thank you gentlemen.

I will have to look at the TS- line,  that looks like a nice rig.

I hadnt wanted to spend that much right now....but Its probably the way to go.
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WX7G
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« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2012, 06:54:53 AM »

If I was in the market for a new radio that was inexpensive I would seriously consider the Alinco HF radio. It is $530 at HRO and it comes with a CW filter. Pair it with an Astron RS-20 power supply at $110 and you're on the air with good equipment at a bargain price.
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AC4RD
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« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2012, 08:02:35 AM »


One more opinion:  i've had a used 897D for a couple of years, and I love that radio.  It's tough, simple, easy to use, and a nice performer for the money.  I use mine portable from my back yard a good bit.

If you're planning to operate mobile, the 857D is the same basic radio but better for mobile use--detachable faceplate. But not quite as good for home use, maybe--more scrolling through menus, fewer simple buttons/knobs to control things.

I won't say either one of them is the BEST choice for you, that's up to you.  But my 897D is a great little radio and I enjoy using it.  And I've seen used 857Ds for under $500 in the last year or so--if it's in good working shape, that seems like a pretty good deal to me.  One fellow had one with a few bad pixels in the display for $350, last year--I almost bought that one just because it seemed like too good a deal to pass up.  ;-)

There are lots of other radios that would probably be great for you also, but if you can find an 897 or 857 in good shape at a good price, I can't imagine being very disappointed with it.  GL 73!
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VK5CQ
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« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2012, 10:59:27 AM »

I'd save for an ICOM IC-7100 (w/ D-STAR), if the price is right.
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KY4RF
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« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2012, 03:39:00 PM »

 Smiley i,d think i would  go with the ic 7000, if you can aford the extra price.
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KC5AKB
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« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2012, 03:12:30 AM »

I like the ft857d along with the ft100d the larger display is nice In the car.
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N6AJR
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« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2012, 10:41:09 AM »

I have a 857 d in the car and a 857d in the pickup truck, and am quite happy with both. I prefer the alphabetical menu system.  I have also had a  IC 706 and an alinco dx 70 but went with the ft 857 as they were easier for me to use and a bit cheaper, and Iprefer them.  they do an excellent job.
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WN2C
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« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2012, 06:57:35 PM »

Depending on how much you want to spend... IC-7000.  All the filters built in with IF DSP not AF.  Course it depends on what you want to spend and how you plan on using it.

de wn2c  Rick
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W7KDH
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Posts: 6




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« Reply #11 on: December 25, 2012, 12:08:48 AM »

I purchased the ft-897d from HRO a few yrs ago on sale brand spankin new for $850.00 snaged the $125.00 yaesu base mike picked up the w4rt 2.3 khz ssb filter allso purchased the external tuner for the 897d "works ok" bought the internal power supply an the ldg external meter.picked up the ldg 200-pro tuner from hro. hooked it up to a hustler mobile mounted on my balcony rail. ran 2 solid copper 40M radials an 4 20M radials an i have under $2000.00 invested an as for the so called intensive menu,it is a peace of cake. i will never buy another radio unless its another ft897d! i just need a ameritron linear an im chillin on the couch pickin up contacts left an right! you cant go wrong with the ft-897d. just my 2 cents. 73 an best of luck! c u on the air. Smiley
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K0JEG
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Posts: 622




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« Reply #12 on: December 25, 2012, 10:59:02 AM »

I used an IC-7200 during field day at our club site, and I've owned an FT-897d for a few years now. If you are able to live without 2M and 70CM on a base rig, it is worth checking out. It's nearly the same price (checking HRO), but has an IF DSP, better display, and USB port that does CAT and sound card functions, so you'll save a few bucks there (along with only needing one cable for everything). It is a little larger but not much.

Another plus is that (I think) Icom's CI-V control protocol is more comprehensive than Yaesu's CAT, so if you use it with a PC you'll have more functionality than with the 897d, if that's important to you.

I'm not an Icom fan, but I was impressed with the IC-7200.
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W9MMS
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Posts: 118




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« Reply #13 on: December 26, 2012, 05:56:20 AM »

Depending on how much you want to spend... IC-7000.  All the filters built in with IF DSP not AF.  Course it depends on what you want to spend and how you plan on using it.

de wn2c  Rick
>>>  the versatility and portability are very attractive. <<<

The IC 7000 does not make a good portable radio. It's a Battery HOG! And yes I own one.
Going price for a used 7000 is around $900 - $1000.00
For around $400 to $500 you can get you a Kenwood TS- 50 with tuner and possibly a CW filter.
They are getting on in years, but will hold it's own with those of it era. (They are plentiful, and parts are available)
Just my $0.02 worth


(((73))) Milverton.
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