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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | JRC JST-245 Help

Reviews Summary for JRC JST-245
JRC JST-245 Reviews: 29 Average rating: 4.6/5 MSRP: $2399.95
Description: HF + 6M 150w Transceiver
Product is in production.
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GI0ZGB Rating: 5/5 Sep 14, 2017 05:36 Send this review to a friend
Old Gold  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I love old school analogue transceivers, and when the opportunity to purchase the JRC JST-245DXG came along, despite the hefty asking price, I jumped at the chance. I was not disappointed, the rig looked like it just came out of the factory, fully loaded with filters and optional extras and had a full service and alignment prior to sale. What a pleasure it is to use a rig without having to navigate multi-layer menus, everything you need falls to your hand. The RX audio is crisp and clear and the TX SSB audio was described as clean and sparkling, and, having heard it myself I have to agree, there is something special about the TX audio that makes it stand out from the crowd. In A/B comparison tests this old timer holds its own with the new digital kids on the block remarkably well. Apart from a few quirky meter selection issues, which are offset by the overall RX/TX performance, this is an astonishing rig given its age, truly a keeper.
G7NKS Rating: 5/5 Mar 11, 2016 03:03 Send this review to a friend
So good I have 3  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought my first one in 2009 and since then have acquired 2 more. Excellent radios. The 60v PSU is a known failure mode but the marvellous Geoff at Castle Electronics will repair them. If you see one, buy it. Excellent analogue HF/6M rig.
JP1DJV Rating: 3/5 Dec 1, 2012 07:49 Send this review to a friend
Good on SSB  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I did comparisons with FT-990, TS-830 and TS-2000 at the same time. I used the same antenna system and watched the same station. I tried to catch signals as weak as possible on both of 20m SSB and CW. TS-830 had the greatest performance in this case. FT-990 was the 2nd and JST-245 was the 3rd. On SSB mode, 245H worked well as TS-830 and FT-990. No problem at all. But my 245H showed the different result on CW. When I used the wide filter, the AF sound through my headphone went worse. It was something like the rumbling of the sea. the Low-frequency sound made S1-signals very difficult to read out.. The rumbling AF sound disturbed me to copy the very weak CW signals, almost impossible to hear. When I narrowed the filter, the AF sound became something like "in a tube " or "under water" sound, like scuba-diving breathing. Frankly speak, I lost the signal, I could hear nothing. Absolutely worthless!! Whenever I use the narrow filter which has a 1kHz or less band width, the target DX signal should be more than S=1.5 on its S-meter. TS-830 could clearly copy "S0(no s-meter deflection) signals" with the 500Hz filter. FT-990 could do it, too. So, JST-245H is good on SSB, ordinary on CW. Besides, TX-controls and RX-controls are mixed up together on the left side of the front panel. More refined layout seems to be necessary. The cooling fan, which runs while the power is ON, is a little noisy.
K4LY Rating: 4/5 Nov 19, 2012 18:00 Send this review to a friend
Excellent, but...  Time owned: more than 12 months
Universal Radio sold many of the JSTs in the 1990s. That's when I bought my JST-245. I used it side by side with another excellent rig, the FT-1000D. I preferred the JST-245. Almost 10 years ago the JST-245 main power supply, which provides 60 VDC, died; That was a common problem according to Universal Radio. In fact,Universal Radio at one time attempted to have a third party build new power supplies for the rig, since they couldn't get parts, but that fell through. A few years ago I bought a JST-145 that had low output and some other minor problems. I bought it for the power supply and installed the working power supply from the JST-145 in the JST-245. The JST-245 came alive but with low power output, only a few watts, like the JST-145. I also transferred the Sub Power Supply which provides 13.8 and 5 VDC, but still the same low power problem. Today I once again played with the two JSTs and the power supplies, and once, for a brief moment, got 150 watts, full power output. I don't think the PAs are bad, but maybe the ALC circuit or something else. HELP, DOES ANYONE SERVICE THESE RIGS IN THE USA? I called up Universal Radio and they said that their JRC tech had retired and that they couldn't get parts anyway. I checked the JRC home page and it appears they will service theses rigs unril 2015, but sending the radio to Japan doesn't sound like a good option. The JST-245 was my all time favorite transceiver. Sure wish I could get mine fixed.
PA1Z Rating: 5/5 Jun 21, 2012 04:16 Send this review to a friend
The perfect classic transceiver  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had the JST-245 for 5 years now, and it has been a superb companion. I don't know what JRC did, but nearly every day I get unsolicited comments about the audio quality on SSB. People tell me it sounds like a broadcast. This also helps me break into many pileups with no problems.
There are still JRC repair centers that can handle repairs and calibration, so this is no issue.

I am so crazy with this radio that I even bought a second as a backup so I can always have one around in case something happens to the service centers years down the road.

Of course, don't expect all kinds of bells and whistles or digital signal processing/filters like we have today. Most of the time I never need that anyway, so I don't miss them in the 245.

For me this is one of the best, if not the best 'old timer' radios around, and the audio on SSB is extraordinary, bar none.
Combine that all with good control placement, a fantastic display and all you need for good DX, and you can't get better than this.
73 PA1Z
W3ULS Rating: 5/5 Jul 16, 2009 12:17 Send this review to a friend
Iain's not dreaming!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I just had to comment on Iain's preceding excellent review of the JRC JST-245. I can assure him (and you) that he's not dreaming about the "magical" results obtained with SSB with the JST-245. And that's running barefoot with wire antennas, as the man says. How it breaks pileups, I don't know. But it does.

When I was active, I used a Heil HM-10 mike with the HC-5 component. Nothing fancy,in other words. I think there are two principal reasons why the JST does so well on SSB. First, the output power is rated at 150 watts, and it delivers every bit of that to the antenna port. Second, the signal is very clean (-38dB transmit IMD3).

This is an unheard of figure in comparison to current ham transceivers. For example, I believe the QST lab report on the latest from Icom found transmit IMD3 was -26 dB or thereabouts. That is a truly mediocre number and is typical of what's out there today. (The ARRL uses a proprietary IMD3 standard which no else follows. It needs to be reduced by about 6 dB for comparisons. Another example: the K-3's transmit IMD3 number was found to be so poor in the lab that ARRL queried Elecraft about it, and the company produced a fix on later models.)

I know of only one ham who did not consider the JST-245 to be the very best analog rig, and you can find his review on this thread. As for me, on SSB the JST-245 still has no peers.
MM0TFU Rating: 5/5 Jul 16, 2009 02:47 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned my JST-245 for over 3 years, and I still love it. It is in daily use on HF and on 6m. When I bought the radio as part of a SK estate sale, it had a fault with the PSU. I sent it off to Geoff at Castle Electronics in Wales (excellent service), who repaired the PSU and serviced the radio. Since then it hasn't missed a beat.

This is quite an old radio now, production having stopped around 1995 (might be a year or two out!) but it can still hold its own amongst todays models.
JRC only ever built top quality equipment, and this rig is commercial/military grade without a doubt.

There is no "menu" button and the word "menu" does not feature anywhere on the front panel. This may be a concern to some, but will be a definate plus to others, who, like me prefer a button or a knob for each function.
The front panel is very well laid out, and using the radio is an enjoyable experience. The main tuning control is very smooth and all the buttons and knobs have a solid and quality feel to them. There are no cheap plastics used here!

The frequency display is large and clear and it remains bright and readable in all lighting conditions.

This radio has a great receiver and combined with the full compliment of filters, I can pick out the weakest of signals in noisy band conditions. The built-in speaker is adequate, but I also have the external speaker NVA-319 which is an excellent match.

The transmitter produces in excess of the quoted 150w and the built-in fans run quiet. The 245 uses standard 8-pin Yaesu type microphone connections and I generally use a Heil headset with the HC-4 DX insert. This generates many unsolicited favourable comments about the audio quality.
There seems to be something magical about the 245's ability to be heard. I have made many contacts on the HF bands, always running barefoot power, breaking pile-ups with only wire antennas, when in the past using other radios I would not have been able to make the contact. I really don't think that I am imagining this. :-)

The JST-245 is relatively rare on the used market, and recent examples have sold for top dollar prices. Having said that, mine will not be for sale any time soon. If you see one advertised, don't hesitate, buy it. You will not be disappointed.

G7NKS Rating: 5/5 Mar 20, 2008 10:08 Send this review to a friend
Marvellous perfection  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have had my 245 now for just over 1 week, having eventually found one on a web auction site. It is excellent and has broken several pile ups barefoot with 150W. My TL922 is having a rest! Lovely quiet RX and very effective ATU with my inverted L, tuning easily from 160M to 10M with only a fight on 80M.

If you see one, buy it! you will not be disappointed

WA6JGM Rating: 5/5 Dec 4, 2007 18:54 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Rig  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned my JST-245 for 11 years now and I have not been disappointed in its performance. What sold me on purchasing the rig was:

1. +20 third order intercept point
2. > 104 DB dynamic range
3. pre-scaling front end
4. Dual filtering in the 9.455 and .455 I.F., very little white noise in the receiver audio.
5. Very good I.M.D. in the transmitter
6. 100% duty cycle on transmit, 150 watts
7. Easy to use
8. It's pretty

These were the published specs. 11 years ago.
The receive audio is pleasing to the ear, hardly any ear fatigue after hours of operation. The front end does not wilt when in a multiple transmitter setting ie. Field Day. The transmit audio is very very good sounding, the rig here works just as good as the day I bought it new. These radios don't come up for sale very often but if you do run across one up for grabs get it if you can, you won't be disappointed.
I have an S-Line, a set of Drake 4C Twins and a 75A4 and love them all but the JRC 245 sits in a class all by itself and not many rigs of "the day" can touch it.


KD5SRW Rating: 5/5 Oct 14, 2007 16:40 Send this review to a friend
ABSOLUTELY SUPERB TRANSCEIVER  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had my fully loaded out JST-245 for two years now and I absolutely love it. Accurate and easly to use, the controls make one a better DX'er. I think the on board Pre-Amp,notch control, noise blanker and Pass Band tuning features are among the finest available on any production radio. I also use the NVA-12 JRC optional audio filter/speaker in conjunction with the 245 and am happy to have it as well, great audio and a vast improvement on the less than stellar small factory speaker installed in the 245.That speaker would be the ONLY thing I would improve in the orginal 245, but the NVA-12 takes care of that "problem" to my satisfaction. I also use an orginial JRC Desk Mic which works like a charm...(I will admit that I recently aquired a Heil PR-40 to use with the 245 and look for great things with it as well.)
I do wish that Japan Radio Corp would listen to its legion of happy owners and produce a "second generation" version of the 245, I would have my order in for it the day it's announced. No menus on the 245, but it's military tough and user friendly, to borrow a phrase, "we don't need no stinkin' menus!
Yes, I am a believer! I have owned a number of other rigs and have sold or traded all of them, nothing yet holds a candle to the 245.
If you find one in nice shape, buy it.
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