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Author Topic: OPINION......Which HT To Purchase?  (Read 1155 times)
KE5CYB
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Posts: 8




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« on: November 22, 2004, 07:33:51 PM »

Thanks in advance for any responses I may receive to this opinion request. As some of you will check the ULS; Yes, I have just aquired my license after over 40 years of short wave listening. I have just now become able to spend time and money on this great hobby....so please hold the flames until I ask a really stupid question. :-)

My question is an opinion request for the make and model of HT that would be a good addition to my shack. I have only researched the Kenwood TH-FA6, i-COM IC-T90A, and the Yaesu VX-7R. I have not considered the Alinco brand and know little about the quality of their product. If funds allow, I would like a tri-band.

I am looking for ease of programming, operation, and craftsmanship quality, etc. Your opinions will be greatly appriciated and respected.

Thanks again.
Foy
KE5CYB
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K0BG
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« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2004, 06:18:30 AM »

This question (and many like it) has been posted about 2,000 times in the past year. The correct answer is, buy the one which meets your needs, not the needs of others.

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com
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K5LXP
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« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2004, 07:03:47 AM »

Having someone else pick your radio for you is like having someone pick your girlfriend/wife for you.  Attributes/features are all personal preferences and everyone wants or needs different ones.  I got a smokin' deal on a dual band rig recently because the ham I bought it from wanted the 'best', then gave up trying to figure out how to work it.  He ended up getting a $300 rig to replace the $1200 one he couldn't figure out.  My best advice is to find a ham club and go to a meeting to meet folks with radios you can try, or go to a local ham store if you've got one, and check out a few to see what features you like.  They all pretty much work as advertised, come with similar warranties and have equally as popular a following as the other in the general ham population.  It's a Ford/Chevy thing, until you get some cockpit time you won't know what you really want.  You'll get as many opinions as responders, so by asking this question in a forum like this you won't get much useful information anyway.  I ended up with half a dozen HT's, each suited to a particular purpose.  Unlike the wife/girlfriend analogy, pretty much any HT will work well for you no matter what, if you hate it you can always sell it and get a different one, and more than one is never a problem.

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
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W7DJM
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2004, 08:17:29 AM »

You say your are looking for "ease of operation"

In my opinion, the TH-F6 is NOT easy to program and operate.

Have had several IC-2AT's,  IC u2,  IC-Uxxx,  W32, TH-79, FT-470, HT-1000, MT-1000.

Currently have FT-50, VX-5, TH-F6

I hardly ever use the 'f6, should get rid of it.  Too darn hard to navigate.
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KE5CYB
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Posts: 8




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« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2004, 08:19:38 AM »

Thank you for the responses.....and points well taken.
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KB1LKR
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Posts: 1897




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« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2004, 08:22:21 PM »

In addition to the VX-7 look at Yaesu's new FT-60r 2/70 dualbander and in addition to the TH-FA6 look at Kenwood's TH-G71a (2/70) too. How much activity is there is your area on 1.25m, and is there ANY 6m FM activity to speak of? Do you need more than 2/70? DO you need water resistant/proof? Do you need/want really small?If you do need/want 1.25m not that few (only one of the KW's?) has full power out on 1.25. Also note that 6m is a awkward freq for an HT unless you have a fairly big antenna. If at all possible try to hold all in your hand, look at displays, listen to them in action, and so on.
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K8JDC
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Posts: 171




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« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2004, 09:32:26 AM »

Foy,

    I have two suggestions.  First, read the reviews here in e-Ham.  I find them very useful when purchasing equipment.  You can usually get a good sense of what the equipment does well and what it doesn't do well.  Second, especially for radio equipment, I would consult the product reviews on ARRL's web site.  These may be in the member-only section, but I find they're useful for comparing features of the various radios.

    FWIW, I have a VX-7R(B) that I like.  I'm not an intensive user of HTs, but I like it for my purposes.  It has some nice features (like DCS, dual receivers, and lots of memories) that my more-expensive 706MKIIG mobile rig don't have.  It's also easily programmable via PC and this makes it extremely nice.  JMHO.

Good luck.

JDC
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KC0LPV
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« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2004, 06:50:48 PM »

I have had the opposite experience with the F6A.  I find it to be fairly intuitive to operate.

I had to reference the manual for the first few days.  Since then, I haven't looked at it but perhaps a handful of times.  

I know if I needed to use some infrequently used feature, I would need to reference the manual, but for daily operation--it's a piece of cake.

Jim
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SFD301
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Posts: 38




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« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2004, 06:25:19 AM »

As my first HT I purchased an IC-V8 2m.   I've just rec'd my license last month and was anxious to get on the air.  I decided on this radio as my first because it is SIMPLE.   Real simple, and had only one band.   It was inexpensive at around $100 from HRO.  It works great so far hitting repeaters aprox 30 miles (it is a high one though.)

However, looking back I wish I had a 2/70 HT.   There are some 70cm repeaters that are active here and they also have echolink working on several whil 2m here only has one exholink hookup.   I did get a rig for the house, an IC 706 MIIG.  Another easy to use radio.

As suggested prior, take a look at what is active in your area.  A 1/2 hour looking up repeaters and contacting clubs in your area will help a great deal.  Wish I had.   Anyway, IMHO I have no need for more than 2/70 HT or mobile rig.   That is where most of the action is.  Also if you want APRS in the future think about it now in an HT.  I'm not sure, but I think it is easier if you have an HT all ready to go.

geo
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KT0DD
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Posts: 405




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« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2004, 06:24:08 AM »

I really like my new FT60R. Check it out. 73.
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