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Author Topic: FT1000 MP V - still a good buy?  (Read 4600 times)
KD8HMB
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Posts: 138




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« on: October 03, 2012, 03:44:03 AM »

I have 2 HF rigs - an older Icom 740, and also an Icom 746Pro. I enjoy using them both, and am generally happy with their performance.
However, I have always been curious about the Yaesu FT1000 series M, MP, V,  field, etc, and based on reviews I have read , believe that they once were ( or still are ) very capable HF rigs.
I see the FT1000 series rigs offered for sale in the classified section on occasion at a price range I would be willing to spend, but since they are older technology, is it really worth getting one, when for about the same price one can get new technology?
I know your answers will be based on your personal opinions, but I'm especially  interested in hearing from those of you who have had a FT 1000 type rig and then sold it for something else. What was your reason for the change?
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G3RZP
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« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2012, 04:15:45 AM »

My worry with rigs of that generation is the spares situation on any special-to-type parts. Strangely, older rigs are easier in that respect.
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KJ6HZ
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Posts: 16




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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2012, 05:39:06 PM »

Five years ago or so I was in the market for an upgrade from the Yaesu FT-100 mobile rig I was using at home for DX'ing.  The old rig performed fine and I was doing well enough.  I'd probably still be using the mobile but running split CW was a challenge with the CW memory and the A/B VFO were on separate menus.  I could have solved the problem more simply with an external keyer, but I really wanted something a bit better and felt like treating myself to something nice.  I looked around and chose the MK-V, which had been one of the top rigs of the previous decade.  I got mine when a lot of guys were trading up (?) to the FT-2000 and getting rid of their FT-1000s.  I wanted something with more knobs and less menus and the FT-1000 certainly qualifies with nearly 100 knobs and buttons on the front panel.

A friend had recommended the IC-746 Pro like his instead of the MK-V.  I've used the 746 a few times but always thought it sounded funny artificial and I just didn't like the sound.  In retrospect, it may have had the DSP set up poorly because I can't imagine they all sound like that.  In addition, I really wanted something with a second RX and we debated the relative merits.  I had my MK-V shipped to a his house since I'm at work when the delivery guy shows up.  He unboxed it and started playing with it and was very impressed both with the performance and with the technical design of the receiver.  Before long he had gotten one for himself and hasn't used the 746 since.  To him, the excellent receiver was the best part.  Personally I like the dual receivers for chasing DX so that you can hear both the DX and the pile-up at the same time.  If you haven't tried it on split CW pile-ups, you don't know what you're missing.  It's also helpful to SSB ops but not nearly as much.  This rig doesn't have a panoramic display which many people say is really great but I haven't tried one so I can't comment on that. 

Whether you would benefit from it depends a lot on what kind of operating you want to do.  If you are a rag chewer or casual operator, it's probably way overkill.  In that case I'd look to a modern radio with a single receiver and good DSP.    If you are into contesting or DX'ing I think you'll really like the FT-1000 series of rigs.  Note that several versions also have a 200W output which is an easy way to gain 3 dB on transmit.  On the down side, you can spend several hundred dollars tricking it out with filters if they're not part of the package.  I would encourage you to look for one with a few filters if you are a CW operator since the end price will be less than getting them separately.  I have a 500 Hz and a 250 Hz filter (only one of two possible for each width) which I wouldn't want to be without.  I  am sure it would hear a bit better with a couple more filters but it works pretty well with what I have.  I haven't bothered with filters for the second RX or for SSB since I don't want to narrow down the B receiver (used mainly for listening to the pile-up on split DX) and I don't care for narrow SSB.  On a modern rig, I'd just find one with a good DSP and not worry about extra filters.  I am not terribly impressed with the DSP on the MK-V but the noise reduction and notch work fairly well.

The previous response noted that the long term servicability may be an issue and that concerns me as well.  However I haven't found a modern radio that will do the same thing for comparable money.  I've looked at the K3 but it's a LOT more money and doesn't have the same level of fit and finish.  On the other hand I've never heard of anyone regretting getting a K3.  From your posting, I'll assume that's out of your price range.  If my MK-V failed tomorrow, I don't know what I'd get to replace it. Another FT-1000 would be on the list of strong contenders.  I would go with the MK-V and probably not bother with the older MP version.  The FT-1000D seems to have a very loyal following and holds its value well, but that's probably ten years older still, so I probably wouldn't choose that.  Unless you want to run it on 12V or always run an amp, I would choose the 200W version instead of the field model simply to get the extra power output.  I have an amp which I drive on the MK-V Class A setting with 75W input but mostly just use the 200W output for simplicity.     

Good luck and 73,
John KJ6HZ
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TANAKASAN
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Posts: 933




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« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2012, 10:25:24 PM »

A lot of the FT-1000 series have problems with key clicks and there are a number of modifications available, this could be bad news if you are a CW fan.

Tanakasan
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G3RZP
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Posts: 4727




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« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2012, 04:37:26 AM »

Historically, it seems most Yaesu transceivers have had key click problems.....
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W9GB
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Posts: 2626




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« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2012, 08:48:36 AM »

The Yaesu FT-1000 was one of Yaesu's best sellers, but it is now old enough, that parts, support, and firmware are real issues.
Fit and Finish -- Front panel, plastic, and knobs does not mean much when you can get parts for the radio to operate OR restore that fit and finish.

Elecraft K3 is by far the best supported amateur radio HF transceiver in production for US amateurs.  
I have NOT seen ANY Asian mfg. supply the level of support, firmware upgrades and backward compatibility.  
Ask a Yaesu rotor owner about parts for repairs -- Throw-Away!  BRW, the new replacement has now doubled in price.

This is consumer electronics attitude for multi-thousand $ radios is a bit WEIRD,
when you consider Asian auto mfg. are MUCH BETTER in this regard (support).

« Last Edit: October 05, 2012, 08:58:46 AM by W9GB » Logged
VE7DQ
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Posts: 176




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« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2012, 09:26:52 PM »

BRW, Greg? I couldn't find that acronym.   Huh
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TANAKASAN
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Posts: 933




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« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2012, 01:58:45 AM »

BTW with fat fingers, but then at my age misstakes sometimes happen as well.

Tanakasan
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W9GB
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« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2012, 04:56:47 PM »

Quote
BTW with fat fingers ...
Yes.  Apple iPad not best for large hands OR with spell-check / self correcting turned on.
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WD5GWY
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Posts: 403




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« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2012, 12:19:27 PM »

I bought an FT-1000MP MKV at a local hamfest yesterday. So, my experience
with it is very limited! It is a late model MKV from a SK estate. No extra filters.
Even so, it is a nice, BIG radio!! This one looks like it just came out of the box.
I'm still exploring all the features that this radio has. I have several radios to
compare it to, but, none quite in it's class. My TenTec Jupiter seems to be almost
equal to the receiver(s) on the MKV. It is really close, with the filtering that is
available in the Jupiter. I also have a Flex 1500 qrp rig. The receiver on it is good
too. I paid what is pretty close to average price ($1400) for it, and it included a
Heil desk mic. I get good audio reports with it too.
  One reason I bought it, is I have always wanted one, after seeing and trying one several years ago. But, prices at the time were just too high for me.
Also, this helped the SK's widow. She was there and the guys that were helping her sell the radios her husband had, were only there to help her and not taking a cut of the money she got. Lots of guys buy up equipment from family of SK's and, "sometimes, not always" get it on the cheap due to the family not knowing
the value of the equipment. These guys did not do that to her and actually helped her.
  Anyway, did not mean to go off on a tangent, but, if you decide to buy a 1000MP MKV,at a decent price, I'd say go for it. There are a lot of people out there that can repair them should they need work. Later production runs of the MKV seem to have corrected issues with the earlier runs.
And, unless you are heavily into CW, the stock radio with it's interference fighting features, will handle almost all, if not all, interference problems.
I started using mine yesterday evening and more today and the California QSO party is/was going on and as-is , this radio works great against qrm.
james
WD5GWY
 
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K0PD
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Posts: 60




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« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2012, 11:23:26 AM »

Well i had a Mark V and it was a very good radio but i was always worried about the cost to replace or repair the power supply that it requires. But the radio worked flawlessly but i just could not develope a love for it and it was a (04) model. I recently aquired a 1000D (03) year as that is when the original owner bought it new from burgharts with the 3 yr first digit. So far i really  like this one even better than the Mark V. But i believe either model would probaly satisfy you. The big draw back between the two is the weight being as the 1000D has the internal power supply where as the Mark V has the seperate power supply.
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WD5GWY
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Posts: 403




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« Reply #11 on: October 08, 2012, 05:22:32 PM »

Well i had a Mark V and it was a very good radio but i was always worried about the cost to replace or repair the power supply that it requires. But the radio worked flawlessly but i just could not develope a love for it and it was a (04) model. I recently aquired a 1000D (03) year as that is when the original owner bought it new from burgharts with the 3 yr first digit. So far i really  like this one even better than the Mark V. But i believe either model would probaly satisfy you. The big draw back between the two is the weight being as the 1000D has the internal power supply where as the Mark V has the seperate power supply.
There was a 1000D at the hamfest Saturday as well. And it was loaded with
filters and had the second receiver, and other options with it. I came VERY
close to buying it instead of the MKV. It had a few, but, hardly noticeable,
scratches on it. And like you said, it was HEAVY! The guy selling it was really
giving me the hard sell too. And all the while, saying he really didn't have to sell it. And if he could not get his asking price, he'd just take it home.
We were about $100 off in what I offered and what he wanted. So, I got the MKV instead. As I said, it looks brand new. And according to the Serial Number, it is a late production unit as well.
  I know that some people have had issues with the radio but, so has every other radio out there. Reviews here still rate the radio very high and with what little time I have used, it, I have to agree that it is indeed a fine radio. I may go ahead and buy the suggested INRAD filters for it too. But, as it is, the receive audio is great and the factory filters along with the DSP and other features seem to hold their own against interference.
  james
WD5GWY
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K3PRN
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Posts: 25




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« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2012, 07:49:55 AM »

About six months ago I was considering selling my Mark V due to the fear of not being able to get it repaired due to parts. I found out about Bryan Cambell, he repairs only Mark V's, can do a complete overhaul of the rig, and has parts for many many years. I sent him my rig and in about two weeks it was returned better than new. He fixes all the cw click problems and does all current upgrades and alignment. The Mark V is a tremendous rig and ones antenna and DX expertise are the weak area for most hams!

73,

Don K3PRN
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