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Author Topic: Appropriate HF rig for  (Read 12072 times)

Posts: 1

« on: June 24, 2012, 09:43:23 AM »

Even though I've been licensed since the 80s, except for a brief period 15 years ago, I haven't operated HF but would like to get back in it. I currently have no equipment for it. Asking a ham colleague of mine about equipment he knows is for sale, he offered a fully-loaded Yaesu FT-1000MB he owns but hasn't been using. The price is substantially below-market. Based on what I've been reading here and elsewhere, this seems to be a popular and favored rig but I'm concerned that it would be an overkill situation for someone such as myself. Would this be an appropriate choice or should I continue looking for something a little less capable as a starter rig?

Your thoughts will be appreciated!

Posts: 179

« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2012, 06:41:15 PM »

If it is a good price, go for it!  You can always grow into it.  It would be better than getting a lesser rig, then selling that one to upgrade to a better rig like the FT1000MP. Might want to get a rig with 6m on it, though, since that is a great band as well.

John AF5CC

Posts: 2415

« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2012, 10:06:02 PM »

From the folks I have talked with about that rig, It has a fairly steep learning curve, And may not be the best for someone just starting out again.......

Of course, IF the price were really right, I would bite the bullet and force myself to learn how to operate it!

I still feel that the Kenwood TS2000 is the best deal in a "do it all" Including VHF/UHF AND cross band repeat radio  available today.  Selling good used in the 900 dollar range, And less than 1500 brand new.

A good deal on a fairly high performance HF only rig is the Icom IC756PRO series (PRO, PROII, And PROIII)  You also sometimes see the original PRO in the 900 dollar range.  Lots of radio in that price range.

Posts: 1003

« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2012, 04:01:56 PM »

I can recommend the Icom 746Pro. I initially encountered one at W6RO on the Queen Mary, and was able to figure it out and work a VHF contest without the manual. I bought one new, and have had it over 10 years, and always bring it to our group's Field Day, as it's very popular because it's so easy to use and the display is readable to the people standing behind you watching. It has NO optional filters, so you aren't tempted to "gold plate" it once you've got it - the DSP filtering built in gives you 3 options for whatever mode you're in.

Posts: 2645


« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2012, 09:40:05 AM »

I too reccomend the IC-746 Pro. It's a rig you don't need to dive into menus to do the most basic of functions such as change your code speed or change your power. I first encountered one at Field Day and was able to figure out what I needed to do to get on the air with it without the manual. I purchased one shortly therafter. With this rig I've chased DX on HF, chased DX on 6.. and just very recently, completed moonbounce QSO's on 2 meters! I like the fact that you get HF+6+2 all mode. I do wish there was an option for 432 but you can't have everything. I did have one issue with the finals, but it was still under warranty and Icom fixed the rig. It has otherwise been a solid rig. I've seen them going used in the 800ish range.

Posts: 12622

« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2012, 10:03:51 AM »

I still feel that the Kenwood TS2000 is the best deal in a "do it all" Including VHF/UHF AND cross band repeat radio  available today.  Selling good used in the 900 dollar range, And less than 1500 brand new.

It does everything but none of it real well. Very primitive DSP that is easily bettered by newer rigs in same price range.

Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..

Posts: 2835

« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2012, 02:35:17 PM »

It does everything but none of it real well. Very primitive DSP that is easily bettered by newer rigs in same price range.

Exactly. I have owned the TS-2000. It is Outdated, especially for HF. For decent HF performance really cheap check out a TS-590s. It is probably as good as it gets for HF rigs under about $1500.

Disclosure: I have owned the  Icom 746, Pro II, Pro III, Yaesu FT-1000D, Ft-897D, Flexradio 5000 and the Kenwood TS-2000 and TS-590s. I still own a TS-590s, all the others are in someone elses shack.  Cheesy

Stan K9IUQ
« Last Edit: June 26, 2012, 02:46:45 PM by K9IUQ » Logged

Posts: 25

« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2012, 06:42:44 PM »

The Yaesu FT-1000mp is an excellent rig even for a beginner, there are all kinds of information and forums on them. It is a great radio and in today's market you get a lot of radio for the money, if you can buy one for below market price I say go for it! I was off the air for ten years and just got back on this past March, I didn't have any equipment, so I found a really nice Yaesu FT-1000mp Mark V Field with all the filters in it, great radio and will be for years to come. Yes they can be a little complex but as said there is plenty of info out there. Also a 756 ProII would be a great rig to look at also, a lot of radio for the money and a little less complex than the Yaesu 1000, either way you won't be going wrong. Just my 2 cents. 73

Posts: 477

« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2012, 07:18:25 PM »

My first question would be what do you plan on doing?  Any particular mode, or just anything that strikes your fancy?
Any radio can work as a 'starter', some are just easier than others, simpler.  But then, doing anything with an unfamiliar radio is going to require some 'learning'.  That FT100MP is a nice radio, got lots of 'bells-n-whstles' you can learn to use, or just leave alone.  But they are there if/when you decide to try them out. 
Best advice is to sit down in front of the thing and play with it.  Think you could learn to like it?  Price not real uncomfortable?  Then why not...
 - 'Doc

Posts: 65


« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2012, 01:38:24 AM »

Go for it.  You'll get used to it quickly.  Compared to a newer FT-2000 it's a walk in the park.

Posts: 2080

« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2012, 11:16:49 AM »

Yep.  I'd buy it in a heartbeat. 

Among other rigs, I've owned a TS-850S/AT, TS-950, IC706MKIIg, and the FT1000MP (the MP since 1999).  I recently sold my FT1000MP to help finance a new amp.  It is the only radio that I've parted company with that I wish I had kept.  It's not "over your head" for a new comer.  Just learn the basics.  The manual is good and I learned something new about the radio every time I read it.  And, there is a reason why some contest stations have two or three of these rigs.

At first you will use, Band, Mode, AF Gain and RF gain.  Then you'll learn the benefits of a second VFO, crystal filters, scanning, attenuators, etc.  It will be a hard radio to "grow out of".

Terry, WØFM
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