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Author Topic: ISO: TS-590s vs FT-950 video  (Read 10824 times)
N9ZEZ
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Posts: 15




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« on: January 20, 2013, 12:56:42 PM »

I am beating myself up between these two radios. I have read hundreds of reviews and am searching for a video comparing the two operating. I can't seem to find one on YouTube that does these 2 radios together. The price difference is about $250 right now and $1400 is my budget. This will be my first and only HF rig so I am searching for the best one that will last.  Just when I think I have convinced myself of one, I find a reason not to. The radio will be hooked up to a ZS6BKW/G5RV @ 40'.

Thanks!
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WD4ELG
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Posts: 860




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« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2013, 03:47:02 PM »

They are both excellent rigs with a lot of good design and performance in them for the price.

Before buying:

1. Define short term and long term goals.  DX?  Digital? Weak signal CW?  RTTY?  Your goals may change with time...
2. Speak with other hams who have the radios, see how their goals have been met.  Use the eham.net reviews and look them up on QRZ.com, email them, and ask them for guidance directly.
3. Get in a shack of another ham and get some hands-on time
4. Try to get to Dayton if you can, it's not too far away from your QTH according to QRZ.com.  You can learn a TON from a day there.  (Or AES Cleveland, or the Ham Station in Evansville http://hamstation.com/)
5. Why the 590 and the 950?  What about some of the other rigs in that price class (Icom?)
6. Determine if you will also need to invest in antenna.  This may make you want to spend less on the rig and save some $$ for an antenna for DXing (if that's your desire).
7. Buy from a dealer that offers 30 day money back guarantee (I think all the vendors offer this).

I would like to help, but I don't own either.  I have a Flex 3000, a TS520S, a TS570, a TS480SAT, and an FT817ND.  Until I got the Flex, I STRONGLY preferred the Kenwoods...especially the weak signal CW filtering capabilities with filters NR1 and NR2.  But everybody has their own preferences.

Keep us posted!
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N9ZEZ
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Posts: 15




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« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2013, 05:06:55 PM »

Thanks for the reply! Here are the answers to your questions.

1. Short term is DX. I would like to get  into digital, RTTY later. No CW
2. I have read every single review there is for both rigs.
3. I don't know anyone who owns either.
4. I would like to purchase a rig in the next few weeks so Dayton is a no-go for this purchase.  Thanks for the headsup about Ham Station as I had no idea there was a ham shop in my state. Although, I doubt I'll make the 5 hour trip to go down there or to Cleveland.
5. I dont have any problem with ICOM's, it just seems that I have read a lot of repair issues with those rigs,  especially with the screens.
6. The optimized G5RV will have to do for now, I  understand that it is a compromise antenna.
7. Looking at hamradio.com and gigaparts for the best pricing right now.

I see that you own a TS-480SAT and that was on my short list for a while also. It seems that everyone recommends the Kenwood's receive over any other radio. I'm just trying to decide if it is worth $250 more right now. You sure dont see the 590 on the used market much, but I do see a few 950's.

Thanks!
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W8JX
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Posts: 5366




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« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2013, 05:20:48 PM »

It seems that everyone recommends the Kenwood's receive over any other radio. I'm just trying to decide if it is worth $250 more right now. You sure dont see the 590 on the used market much, but I do see a few 950's.

There is a reason. Honestly the reason 950 is cheaper is because it is a lot less radio than 590 plain and simple. No shortage of used 950's tell you something too.
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KB8VIV
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Posts: 47




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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2013, 08:54:51 AM »

The Yeasu is a nice rig, but the TS-590 has garnered critical acclaim for it's great receiver.  If you can't hear them you can't work them.

Good luck,

de kb8viv
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N9ZEZ
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Posts: 15




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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2013, 09:02:27 AM »

Thanks for the replies. I just pulled the trigger on the 590 and will have it in a few days. I'll let you know my thoughts after I get it up and going.
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WD4ELG
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Posts: 860




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« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2013, 02:24:28 PM »

Recommend joining the Yahoo group for the 590: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/KenwoodTS-590/

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KE2TR
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Posts: 129




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« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2013, 08:42:30 PM »

Good call, you will like the 590, the operation of the 590 is very smooth plus the connectivity to a computer will give you added flexability, its like having a sdr plus knobs that all work well. The RX is fantastic, the roofing filters work very well only to be bested by the likes of a fully loaded K3 or FTDX5K at a much higher price tag. The TX works very well plus when used with there computer software you will have an 18 band EQ on transmit. With the USB connection it allows easy hookup with to your computer for digital modes. Again the RX is outstanding and all the QRM/QRN tools work very well.
Jim
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WD4ELG
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Posts: 860




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« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2013, 10:12:20 PM »

Whoa. I did not know it had a TX EQ.  Sweet!
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NB3R
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Posts: 26


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« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2013, 04:52:48 AM »

You will like the 590.  Great receiver and easy to use.  Another nice feature is the USB cable will not only provide rig control with your computer it will also pass audio to and from your computer.  You can to RTTY (AFSK) and other digital modes without additional cables or hardware. 

Enjoy your new radio.

Dave
NB3R
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K8GU
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« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2013, 05:03:47 AM »

You made the right choice.  The TS-590S has been described by a number of folks as "the poor man's K3."  I strongly considered it but ended up upping my budget for the K3 (selling some gear offset that) because it had some other features I wanted for my specific interests.  Friends have told me that the FT-950 requires the NS roofing filter modification to even be useful on a crowded band.
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W6GF
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Posts: 161




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« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2013, 01:09:31 PM »

I own both.  TS 590 hands down

George, W6GF
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VE3FMC
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« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2013, 12:47:30 PM »

I am beating myself up between these two radios. I have read hundreds of reviews and am searching for a video comparing the two operating. I can't seem to find one on YouTube that does these 2 radios together. The price difference is about $250 right now and $1400 is my budget. This will be my first and only HF rig so I am searching for the best one that will last.  Just when I think I have convinced myself of one, I find a reason not to. The radio will be hooked up to a ZS6BKW/G5RV @ 40'.

Thanks!

I am happy with my FT-950. Have operated it daily since the spring of 2010.

You must be a new ham because you stated this would be your one and only HF rig. Trust me it won't.  Grin
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KC1MK
Member

Posts: 24




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« Reply #13 on: January 26, 2013, 02:40:27 PM »

I think you will be very pleased with the 590. I've had mine for a little over a year and and more than happy with it.
I also have a 950, and I do like it. I use it regularly (variety is nice), but I use my 590 about 80% of the time.
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WA7NDD
Member

Posts: 17




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« Reply #14 on: January 26, 2013, 05:01:07 PM »

I've owned the TS-590 for over a year, and it will be the last radio I buy. You can beat the price a little, but not the performance. If you are at all using digital, this radio has USB and RS 232 ports and interfaces like no other. I had Yaesu for ten years, great radios, but the 590 is just better. Easy software upgrades, always good reports, runs my ALS600 just fine. IF I had $10,000 dollars, I'd look at the TS990, but I'll bet most of the 590 is in that radio, with the menus made into buttons and a few more goodies. You won't go wrong with the 590. Just check out how many FT 950's are resold soon after they are bought. If you are into CW it is excellent.
Jim WA7NDD
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