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Author Topic: Any new Kenwood HF radio rumors ?  (Read 1807 times)
K6AER
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« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2009, 09:35:36 AM »

“It is the best radio if one were looking for pure radio specifications and performance.”

With the above statement Phil you have opened the door.  While most of the specifications of the K3 are quite impressive there is much room for improvement if you’re a SSB guy. The IMD on the Transmitter is between 27 and 29dB in the ARRL two tone test.

I spend much of my time on SSB and I take a lot of pride in what my audio sounds like. Most of the time the audio I hear from the K3 is not right. It has a DSP artifact that you can hear. The ARRL has tested the radio twice and their IMD tests confirm the audio is not there yet.

At the Visalia DX convention we had a K3 for two days on the super station, K6V and at lest hundreds of hams used the station. With a PR-781 microphone the audio sounded fine but many of the contacts know the operators voice and they universally said the audio in just not there yet. On Saturday after 5 PM we switched to a FT-950 and everyone loved the audio on that little radio.

I have built and played with K3 for many weeks and finally gave up on the radio. Yes I know their have been literally dozens of software changes but the radio is still in need of improvement in the audio side of its operation.

The receive speaker audio goes to hell if you try to drive a 4 ohm speaker at more than .5 watts of audio. The VCC trace is too small to the audio chip and many have added a jumper to the audio IC. I’m sure this was off the RADAR screen during design for most of the K3 users are CW types using headphones.

Dragging this back to the original post I hope Kenwood does come out with a serious radio. I own a TS-2000 and it’s a great radio but it is getting a bit long in the tooth. Kenwood fans love the audio the radio produces.

To often the operational side of a radio design is ignored for it is a aspect that is hard to evaluate.
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KB9CRY
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« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2009, 11:49:29 AM »

Yes I know their have been literally dozens of software changes but the radio is still in need of improvement in the audio side of its operation.


And by this statement you admit that they may have solved all the issues you first discovered; kind of a neat ability to be able to improve the radio on the fly.
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N8TCZ
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« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2009, 12:32:38 PM »

I thought the whispers on the street were that Kenwood was going to phase out of the Amateur market and concentrate on the consumer and commercial market.
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KK7KZ
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« Reply #18 on: January 08, 2009, 01:34:55 PM »

Our little local ham shop has been having a difficult time getting Kenwood products and he's getting the feeling Kenwood is probably exiting the market, slowly. The economy will probably hasten that decision.

Ron
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VE3GNU
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« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2009, 01:51:50 PM »

In the hope of owning a Kenwood rig someday, I too have been waiting for any 'signals' from the company as to their HF Ham Radio future.
In similar such postings over the past two years---the 'rumours' were centred around the issue of RHOS compliance---ie. the use of lead-free solder---as stipulated by the European Union.
Given the economic reality of today (and for some time to come), I am truly pessimistic---
Ernie VE3GNU
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KC2OYZ
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« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2009, 05:52:54 PM »

I had a TS-480HX and it is a kickass radio - but I couldn't stand looking at it, so I sold it.
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KB0NPW
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« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2009, 07:10:56 PM »

I thought they were getting totally out of amateur gear, but I hope not. I have been a Kenwood man for a long time. All of my current rigs are Kenwood. I have an old TS-440SAT that I just love to death. My dream rig would be an 870 and I hope to get one later this year. If they do come out with a new one, I hope it looks better than the 2000. I like the retro looks of the older rigs and I would love to see analog meters.
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W8JJI
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« Reply #22 on: January 09, 2009, 08:05:57 AM »

I STRONGLY agree, the TS 2000 and 480 radios are UGLY looking !

I own the 480HX and am planning to build a costom enclosure for it with all new buttons. I know , it is quite an undertaking but the radio performs well except for the AM receive being too wide from poor filter slopes. I am working on that as well.

Kenwood should pick up where the TS 870 left off, but with a true analog S meter.
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KASSY
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« Reply #23 on: January 09, 2009, 02:10:20 PM »

Oh, now that's funny.  The guy who bleated on and on about the K3's audio and IMD problems prefers a Kenwood TS-2000 - the single dirtiest transmitter currently available to hams as a new radio.  The receiver's about as bad.  It's a "do everything with mediocre performance" radio.  But, when you put that much into one box, you don't expect it to perform any function as well as a dedicated box - and it doesn't.  Also, because of how much it does, it's a very confusing user interface.  I had to sit down at my local HRO store for an hour to figure out how to use the rig...but it took me only a few minutes with a K3 on my one and only instance of doing a phone contest.

I can hear "artifacts" in the transmitted and received audio of all DSP-based radios.  K3, Flex, IC-746/756/7700/7800.  But I'm just not an ESSB op, so it doesn't matter to me.

Yes, I think Kenwood is exiting ham radio.  But it's not to concentrate on two-way commercial - the local two-way Kenwood dealer is also complaining that they have not introduced any new decent products for that market, either, and he's having to take on a different brand for that reason.  

I suspect they're going to focus purely on consumer products.

- k
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HB9PJT
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« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2009, 02:39:56 PM »

"Also, because of how much it does, it's a very confusing user interface. I had to sit down at my local HRO store for an hour to figure out how to use the rig..."

It depends on ability.
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K6AER
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« Reply #25 on: January 09, 2009, 05:04:58 PM »


“Oh, now that's funny. The guy who bleated on and on about the K3's audio and IMD problems prefers a Kenwood TS-2000 - the single dirtiest transmitter currently available to hams as a new radio. The receiver's about as bad.”

The above statement is just not true.

The HF IMD on the Kenwood TS-2000 was measured by the ARRL at 27 dB. Mine measured 31 dB two-tone at 100 watts. This is better than the convenient K3. I did not say I preferred TS-2000 for its audio although it is good but I did say it was a good radio, which it is. The English language is specific and so was I in my statement.

I use an IC-756 Pro-III as my main HF radio and the radio produces 35 dB two-tone at 700 and 1900 KHz as measured from single tone peak with 100 watts out.  The only radios I have found that are cleaner on two-tone IMD is the IC-7800 and the Flex-5000.

As for spectral purity the TS-2000 at 5 KHz from center frequency is down 43 dB from Carrier peak. That is very clean and I wish more radios on HF were as good. My Pro-III is down 49 dB from two-tone carrier peak at 5 KHz which is exceptionally clean. Both radios have had their final amplifier bias reset for best IMD linearity.

I the case of the PRO-III was I had to buy a very clean radio so as to have an exceptionally clean signal when running an amplifier and a beam up high. If you signal is only down at 35 dB at 5 KHz you’ll hear about from everyone up and down the band. If all you run is a G5RV at 100 watts most will never know if your transceiver is dirty or not. I would also help if hams would not turn up their bass EQ. This is the single greatest contribution to wide distorted signals.

My test numbers are not derived from second or third source hearsay for I own the necessary test equipment and have tested the transceivers I speak of.

So often in the Elmer’s section, statements are forwarded with little or no research and become agenda driven statements.

Getting back to the original post it would be nice of Kenwood would produce a world class transceiver for once you get inside a Kenwood product you see the difference in their engineering, construction, total product execution and documentation. This is an area where the american transceiver manafactures have been lacking.

I predict this will be the year Kenwood makes a decision about the Ham Radio market.
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KS2G
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« Reply #26 on: January 11, 2009, 06:30:42 PM »

For what it's worth, I spoke today with a local dealer who said that Kenwood has been concentrating on "cleaning up" its commercial and VHF/UHF amateur products to comply with EU environmental standards.

He said they're pretty much done with that and are turning their attention to HF amateur, with design work being done on a new HF rig.

Probable arrival in 2010.

Likely price range $5K.

73,
Mel - KS2G
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WB3DDF
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« Reply #27 on: January 12, 2009, 09:00:35 AM »

I was curious myself about whether Kenwood was going to produce a new rig so I emailed them. Below is the response I received. It looks like they are coming out with a new high end rig.


 Kenwood has a new high end HF transceiver in the works.

 I have no information or ETA for this new product.  

 If you need further assistance, please e-mail us again. You may alsocall for Customer Support at: (310) 639-4200 you will hear three promptswhen your hear a voice press 5, voice again 2, and voice again 1. Youmay also fax to (310) 537-8235, or email to: kcc-amateur@kenwoodusa.com  

 Leo Fahmie
 Kenwood Amateur Radio Customer Support
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VO1MX
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« Reply #28 on: January 14, 2009, 04:45:21 PM »

Kenwood has a new high end HF transceiver in the works.

I have no information or ETA for this new product.

I hope this is true but I am not overly optimistic that it will happen.

73,
Dan VO1MX
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K9KEN
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« Reply #29 on: January 15, 2009, 05:01:17 PM »

WB3DDF email is very very true ! I know a Kenwood Rep out here and his statement was Kenwood has not abandoned the amateur market ! They introduced the new vhf/uhf mobile and will have a new HF rig by 2010 or 2011 the latest! I asked why so long and the answer I received was due to the fact of several mergers as well as the commercial part of the business! I can understand some of this due to the fact how large Kenwood is a large company ! They are  in so many markets it is understandable!I have had many Kennwod rigs and I have to say the TS 2000 and 870 are the best for me ! The 2000 hands down suits all my needs for HF AND VHF/UHF ! GREAT RIG ! The 870 is a great hf rig for dxing ! ONLY MY OPINIONS ON THE RIGS

K9KEN
Joe
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