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Reviews Categories | QRP Radios (5 watts or less) | Youkits HB-1B QRP CW Transceiver Help

Reviews Summary for Youkits HB-1B QRP CW Transceiver
Youkits HB-1B QRP CW Transceiver Reviews: 38 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $299
Description: Youkits HB-1B 4 Band QRP CW Transceiver
Product is in production.
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W7JCK Rating: 5/5 Aug 24, 2013 11:27 Send this review to a friend
Nice little radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have been out of HF for awhile, and thought I'd try my hand at QRP with the HB1B. Overall, I am very pleased. The receiver is quite decent and you can hear a lot more stations than can hear your 5 watts. All the functions work as advertised, it's a very well thought out device. I haven't tried mine portable yet, but I think it would do fine with a small external lead-acid battery pack.
K5JYD Rating: 5/5 Aug 16, 2013 11:17 Send this review to a friend
good rig  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Got this rig a week ago and also the internal battery pack. Easy to use. Took abt 15 min to set it up and get on the air. Everything works, made a few contacts with it.This is going to be my back pack to the park rig and its a good one.I really like the digital fre read out .The plan is to us the elecraft T1 auto tuner and a long wire at the park and it should do just fine.This is a real user friendly little rig.
VK2DMH Rating: 5/5 Jul 30, 2013 01:16 Send this review to a friend
Chinese 4-Band QRP Rig is a Little Beauty  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought my HB-1B QRP CW Transceiver from, and paid for the optional Li-Po battery and wall-wart charger.

It arrived promptly, but I had trouble getting a straight morse key to work with it. At first I thought it was me making a mistake with my wiring, which is what tells the rig whether you are using a straight key or a paddle. Eventually I diagnosed an intermittent fault with the rig, so I arranged to send it back for repair.

Yimin, who lives in Canada, was very helpful, and had a replacement sent to me from China. He delayed sending it for a couple of weeks so I could receive the Mark 2 model, which has full QSK break-in.

Once the new rig arrived, I was able to plug in either a straight key or a paddle, and everything worked FB. This HB1B has excellent sensitivity and a beautifully efficient variable width IF filter, which does a wonderful job of selecting the station you want while blocking out nearby QRM.

You can program your callsign into a memory on the rig, and it can call CQ for you, and you can change the sending speed of the built-in keyer to whatever CW speed you are comfortable receiving. You can also program your favorite frequencies into 30 different MEM channels and can listen to SSB voice conversations or AM news and music broadcasts (by zero-beating the receiver's SSB side tone).

I see this rig as just about perfect for QRP CW portable ops, such as SOTA (Summits On The Air) or hiking and camping. Just take a good, lightweight wire aerial for maximum signal power out.

I could not be happier with this radio. I have avoided CW for more than 20 years and stuck to voice, with a little PSK and other digital modes. But when fiddling with the HB1B while sitting on my porch the other day, I heard a CQ coming in strongly on 40 meters. I nervously answered the call, and had my first proper QSO in CW mode for more than 25 years. You can read the full story on my website, The article is called How I Learned To Love Morse Code.
AA1BW Rating: 5/5 Mar 16, 2013 11:07 Send this review to a friend
Awesome  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I ordered one directly from China, it was here in 3 days with TNT. Excellent service. Upon opening the rig, I found one 220u/5V cap to be loose, so I replaced it with one. Also I installed the internal battery pack also from Youkits. I had to use some foam cut for size, to hold the battery in place, otherwise it was moving around, risking to make some damage to the PCB. After all these "maintenance" procedure, I switched it on.
The receiver is fantastic, very selective, very hot. The variable BW is great. Also the Memory / VFO operation is quite logical. SO I programmed all CW Freq into MEM -s. It is easy to change bands in MEM mode. Pressing the V/M/SAV button once switches over to VFO on the very same Freq, so tuning is simple. Pressing the button again, the freq returns to MEM value. Very logical, and smart way to move across the bands. The attenuator is great and helps on 40m a little.
The TX is solid. It is very easy to change the speed of the internal el-key.
I am using it for 3 days, made several contacts, and have still 12.3 V in the battery, so with the internal battery it is a very nice hiking rig.
I have the FT-817, ICOM-703P, HW-9, OHR100, and several QRP rigs. This one is the smallest, most compact of all. For hikes, where I dont need all band, all mode, and size-weight matters this will be my choice, so I may take an extra lens for my camera kit instead.
It is a very good value for money investment.
W8AQ Rating: 4/5 Mar 15, 2013 13:57 Send this review to a friend
Good Purchase  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I ordered the HB1B from TenTec a few weeks ago. I'd been reading the reviews and checking out the videos on YouTube. I've been using my FT-817ND for quite awhile and have grown quite fond of QRP.

The little HB1B arrived after a few days. My first impression was how small it was. It really makes my 817 look a bit large.

Unfortunately, it had been shipped without the battery holder. Also the optional battery I'd ordered with it arrived with a broken connector. I obviously wasn't happy but plugged it into the optional AC power supply I also ordered, connected it to a 40 meter dipole, a tuner and started listening.

I was quite impressed with the receiver and especially with the variable IF filter. Very cool and even better than I had anticipated. Since I also do a fair amount of SWL still I also checked it out on the SWBC frequencies. Once I got used to tuning the SSB to get the best sound, I was again impressed.

Unfortunately, on XMIT things fell apart quickly. It appears to have had a blown final and registered no output.

I contacted TenTec that night and heard back from them first thing the next morning. In a couple days, a replacement HB1B, a new battery for the broken original and a battery holder for the missing one were shipped out to me.

(Sidebar here...Ten Tec service is phenomenal!!! I'll be back to them in the future for sure.)

Upon arrival of the replacement rig, I got it on the air in short order and have now had a number of solid QSOs in the first couple of nights. I've gotten only positive reports from everyone I QSOd including a ham using 800 watts (I was at 5 watts) and hearing me as well as I heard him. Another station almost refused to believe I was QRP. And that was with a depleted battery getting me down to about 2 watts. He kept repeating "WOW" after giving me a 599 and asking twice if I was REALLY QRP!

In short, I'm a happy HB1B owner. The rig that worked is a solid 5+ (Great!) but I have to rate the radio a 4 (Good) to be realistic having received one that wasn't working.

I'd recommend it and would certainly buy another if in the market. Though it doesn't replace the FT-817, for a ham using only CW on QRP like me, it really could. Good rig.
W5RST Rating: 5/5 Mar 8, 2013 15:37 Send this review to a friend
Great value in a portable rig!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
At the time of writing, I've had the HB-1B for less than a month, but it's really gone through its paces in that time. I bought my HB-1B with the optional Li-ion battery from Ten Tec, and basically, the performance of this little radio has greatly exceeded my expectations. I've used it at home to work DX (TX5K on 80M, 30M, and 20M) as well as portable for a SOTA summit activation. Some of the things I really like about the HB-1B include the receiver (excellent variable filter), the display (highly visible in direct sunlight), and the low current drain when operating portable. For shortwave listening, the sound is quite acceptable with the ability to change sidebands very helpful in avoiding adjacent channel interference. The inclusion of an attenuator to prevent receiver de-sensing, memories and RIT make this rig very versatile indeed.

The fit and finish are very good to excellent. The stenciling on the case is not exactly razor sharp but the case itself is rugged and should stand up to many trips on the trail. The battery is a bit of a tight fit, so you might do some test positioning of it before attaching permanently with the included double-sided tape. The battery charger that came with my HB-1B turned out to be defective, but a call to Ten Tec had a replacement one show up on my doorstep within days (typical Ten Tec service).

So, overall, I would say that the HB-1B may be one of the best bargains in ham radio today. Not only is this a great field radio but it could also serve well for the budget minded ham who wanted a versatile home QRP CW rig without spending a lot of money. If I could give fractional ratings, I would give this little guy a 4.8. Highly recommended.
ON4KNP Rating: 1/5 Dec 11, 2012 08:12 Send this review to a friend
Almost no output power  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Go my new rig today and runned a few qso on 30m, where I was pleased to hear some US stations around local noon, so the receiver works well ;-)
Then went up to 20m and finally down to 40m, where the output power suddenly dropped from 5W to 500mW.
Powering off and on isn't of any help.
I opened the box and no surprises, clean except for the two loosen toro´d wounded coils near the power amplifier transistor. Even with the emaneled wire I youldn't trust routing those wires over sharp component connections and so close the the housing...
Conclusion, just look don't touch, I called the service engineering who is arranging a pick-up for repair. In the mean time I keep my fingers crossed.
W3BUG Rating: 5/5 Oct 22, 2012 17:46 Send this review to a friend
Wow !!! Great little rig.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just received my HB1B from Ten-Tec. Connected everything and wow....what a great little piece of gear. From Maryland on 20 meters at 2100-2200 hrs worked Idaho and Tennessee. Went on to 40m and worked Jersey and NY. Using an inverted L wire antenna and a small tuner. This little fellow works like a champ. Super small but has a great receiver. All-in-all I am a very happy camper with this little rig. Can't wait to get into the outdoors to give a good. run. Well worth the cost.
DL1AIW Rating: 5/5 Oct 22, 2012 04:11 Send this review to a friend
TOP for QRP and mobile  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I've bought this nice little transceiver some months ago and it developed into my no1 qrp rig within a few hours. As always it is useless to compare it with rigs of several times the price but I don't think that one get more for the money in the field of qrp exept building a transceiver at home.

It is working from 80 m to 20 m on CW with an internal keyer, but as far as reception is concerned it can be used also with SSB or AM (not the best sound-quality of course). The variable IF-Filter is of enormous use and with bigger antennas the ATT is not the last thing to think about!

During the last months I had about 200 QSOs with it, all of them portable or maritime mobile from my sailing ship. The antennas I've used were verticals up to 10 m hight and the buddipole. Though DX is a little bit more rare than with a QRO-stn I managed to work all continents exept Antarctica.

Only 5 W don't require a QRO-tuner. I use the tuners from QRP-Project (kits for building at home), either the Fuchs circuit for the vertial half wave or the ZM-4 for the rest.

All together this equipment is lightweight with a very limited volume, so it will also be used for my upcoming SOTA-activities.
WX4O Rating: 5/5 Sep 6, 2012 11:41 Send this review to a friend
Excellent QRP Rig  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Great small box QRP Xcvr! Four bands in a relatively small box that's already assembled is well worth the price. I haven't tried the SOTA tuner yet. I bought a ZM2 ATU which works very well. I recommend this radio.
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