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Author Topic: K-3 vs. TS590S  (Read 17014 times)
N4GKC
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Posts: 15




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« on: November 08, 2013, 06:05:23 AM »

For 100% cw operation which would you  rate higher ; the Elecraft  K-3 or Knwd TS 590S ? Currently using Kwnd TS 940S (which I enjoy very much) and Ten- Tec Orion. Want to upgrade. A solid, used  K-3 would be  about the same money as a new 590S. What's your vote? Thanks in advance ..P.S.    My sweet XYL says Santa might bring me a new rig 
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K9IUQ
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« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2013, 06:26:04 AM »

For 100% cw operation which would you  rate higher ; the Elecraft  K-3 or Knwd TS 590S ? Currently using Kwnd TS 940S (which I enjoy very much) and Ten- Tec Orion. Want to upgrade. A solid, used  K-3 would be  about the same money as a new 590S. What's your vote?

A solid used K-3 at the price of a new TS-590s would be $1500. At this price the K-3 will be "barebones". Like a car without AC,Pwr Windows,Power Steering ETC.

At a $1500 price level the Kenwood will provide many more features and bang for the $$$ over a used $1500 K-3.

My advice: If Santa only has $1500, get the Kenwood. If Santa has more $$$ get a K-3 that is not barebones.

Stan K9IUQ
« Last Edit: November 08, 2013, 06:29:27 AM by K9IUQ » Logged
N3QE
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« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2013, 06:41:09 AM »

I would put the TenTec Eagle on the list too. I have extensively used K3's at contest stations and I prefer my Eagle at home.
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N3DF
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« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2013, 07:01:51 AM »

Tell Santa not to cheap out and get you a new, loaded K3.
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Neil N3DF
W1JKA
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« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2013, 07:16:55 AM »

For CW only tell Santa you would be happy with either one, barebones or not.
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N4GKC
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« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2013, 07:24:56 AM »

I would put the TenTec Eagle on the list too. I have extensively used K3's at contest stations and I prefer my Eagle at home.
How would you compare the T-T Eagle to the Orion ? 
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N4KD
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« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2013, 07:32:30 AM »

There are a lot of intangibles with the selection. Elecraft service is second-to-none. The K3 is almost infinitely expandable. The Kenwood will still be the same radio 10 years from now. Sherwood ranks the K3 and TS-590 very similarly. If you have $2500, spend it on a brand new K3 with a couple CW filters. If you can only spend $1500, I'd buy the K'wood unless you really do see a used K3/100 at that price.

vy 73,
Dave N4KD
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N3QE
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« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2013, 07:51:07 AM »

I would put the TenTec Eagle on the list too. I have extensively used K3's at contest stations and I prefer my Eagle at home.
How would you compare the T-T Eagle to the Orion ?  

I also use an Orion (not II) at a friend's shack. The Orion and Eagle both have the luscious receiver sound, the K3 is much more gritty.

The Orion also has a lot more knobs and buttons and despite being in front of it for many hours I still feel it is a little more awkward than the K3 and Eagle which have very nice and simpler user interfaces. To me, the Eagle is the simplest of the bunch.

Strangely enough, my friend with the Orion, one of his favorite accessories is a remote knob/keypad accessory that adds even more buttons and knobs. So obviously my affinity towards small number of knobs/buttons is not universal.

Maybe one reason I like the Eagle so much is that the knobs are pretty much a one-to-one match to my old Ten-Tec Triton IV (which is nearly 40 years old now!)

I've made over 2000 QSO's on various K3's in the past two years, about 1000 on my friend's Orion, and over 45000 on my Eagle at home. It's pretty easy for me to switch from Eagle to K3 but the switch from Eagle to Orion always has a bit more learning curve.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2013, 08:04:30 AM by N3QE » Logged
K9IUQ
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« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2013, 08:01:41 AM »

The K3 is almost infinitely expandable.

AKA infinitely endless money pit....

Stan K9IUQ
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N4KD
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« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2013, 08:14:53 AM »

The K3 is almost infinitely expandable.
AKA infinitely endless money pit....
Yep, but it's like eating an elephant. One bite at a time... Last year, I treated myself to some filters. This year, it's either the P3, or the second receiver.

- Dave N4KD
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K3STX
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« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2013, 08:22:19 AM »

i bought a TS-590S to replace my aging TS-850S. I have never used a K3. I too am 100% CW

I actually prefer the TS-850S to the TS-590S, but it is getting old and the money was there for a new radio (same price range as you). I don't have killer antennas, so not sure I would really appreciate any difference in sensitivity of K3 to TS-590S. Of course it is a fine rig, but what I HATE is the noise blanker(s) are not as good as those on the TS-850S and I hate the fact that when operating split I am stuck with the SAME bandwidth listening to the DX with my RX on VFO1 and then listening to the pile-up on my TX frequency (VFO2). On the 850S I could have two different filter settings for the different VFOs when operating split, not so with the 590S.

Also I think the K3 is alot smaller than the 590S, and the 590S is a bit small even for me.

paul
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KS2G
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« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2013, 01:48:27 PM »

I think the K3 is alot smaller than the 590S, and the 590S is a bit small even for me.

The K3 and '590 are just about the same size -- but the K3 weighs significantly less.
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K3STX
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« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2013, 08:28:10 PM »

After posting, I came home and hooked my TS-590S and TS-850S up to the same antenna. Was working K9W pileup, the TS-590S heard MUCH better than the TS-850S!! I was surprised. The TS-850S is back in the box; that should tell you something.

paul
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N4OI
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« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2013, 04:16:21 AM »

The K3 is almost infinitely expandable.

AKA infinitely endless money pit....

Stan K9IUQ

Not necessarily a money-pit for a CW-only machineā€¦  Get the basic K3 and a 250 Hz 8-pole filter.   That will buy you 12 watts out with a first-rate receive capability.  If Santa is flush, get the 100W PA for those times when you want to go "QRO."  (This is my experience; reasonable hams may disagree.)

73
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SWL2002
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Posts: 277




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« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2013, 08:58:21 AM »

Elecraft are experts at figuring out how to suck the money out of you for accessories and add-ons.

Get the TS-590s, forget the K3 unless you like wasting your money for little difference in performance.
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