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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur (inc. HF+6M+VHF models) | Yaesu FTDX-3000 Help


Reviews Summary for Yaesu FTDX-3000
Yaesu FTDX-3000 Reviews: 93 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $3299.00
Description: Yaesu newest add to the HF line
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.yaesu.com
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<— Page 3 of 10 —>

KF5UTP Rating: 5/5 Mar 27, 2014 15:17 Send this review to a friend
AWESTRUCK BY PERFORMANCE  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
As former Navy Radioman who got into HAM radio a few years ago at the urging of his wife. I recently moved up to the Yaesu FT-DX 3000 from an FT-840. I tried a number of other radios including an FT-897 and an ICOM 756 Pro III (too expensive used). I also considered the FT-DX 1200 (But after adding up the cost of all the features to make it even close to the 3000 in terms of features it was a no-brainer).

My FT-840 was my favorite because the sensitivity of the receiver. I could hear things other radios just missed outright. The FT-DX 3000 was the clear winner in the receiver sensitivity department. It included stock an amazing DSP, excellent filters, and a very simple menu system.

HUGE PLUS is the USB port (missing on the 1200) - the radio has a built in sound card modem! My MAC recognized it right away and I didn't even have to change my fldigi setup one bit (was used prior with a signalink USB by tigertronics). You can also use the same USB port for rig control as well.

Built in tuner - As expected 3:1 or less and it will tune - Chances are you'll need a good external tuner which I already had.

Microphone - MH31 variant. Nice but not worthy of the radio - I bought the md100 for my 840 and moved it over to the 3000 right away to make an amazing radio sound better.

Audio Reports - This radio seems to put out more DB of signal for the same power than any of the others i've tried. I get consistently better signal reports by 3-5 db. The audio quality is also much improved and the MONITOR feature lets you hear your output.

Parametric EQ - Easy to use and set-up - does amazing things to tailor your microphone and voice for maximum level and readability.

I'd give this a 6 out of 5 if I could. It costs pretty dearly, but you get exactly what you pay for. This radio is WORTH IT!

Colin
KF5UTP
 
K4ECD Rating: 5/5 Mar 7, 2014 15:10 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio - outstanding Audio  Time owned: more than 12 months
This radio has it all.

Audio: The audio reception is superb, and the reports I get on SSB are always "nice audio" even with stock mic.

DSP: Superb. Better than expected. What more needs to be said. Tweaking the new "Contour" feature, allows those weak stations to be heard with ease. The TI chip makes it all the better.

Bandscope: Yes that bandscope. Some hate it, some love it. I use it to find stations not yet in the cluster, and also to spot split frequency quickly when the station is not announcing it. (5-10 up!)

Record and play back: really nice as a standard feature. Helps when you need to "hear it again", the add-on DVS-6 makes it even better. I call use the included remote to call cq, or just my call.

USB: It works very well. Can even control the rig via PCC-3000 software. Setting the parametric EQ this way is a must. Great little app. This USB port also enables effortless digital mode operation via PC.

No radio is perfect, but for the price/quality/performance, this radio is a 5/5 every time. Next to my 857d, for portable use, I have 2 radios that can serve me well for quite some time.

 
K9SO Rating: 5/5 Mar 5, 2014 03:00 Send this review to a friend
Incredible DSP performance  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I bought this radio for its receiver. I've been disappointed with the phase noise increase on my Icom radios in crowded band conditions. I only operate via remote control so I won't comment about the rig's ergonomics.
I consider the receiver in this product to be a real breakthrough. The 32 bit Texas Instruments DSP gives a level of performance I never expected and could hardly believe. To say it outperforms the typical 16 bit DSP processors in other radios is an understatement. In some cases, on the higher bands, the noise level drops to near zero when the DSP is enabled and the DX just pops out. The noise blanker and Noise reduction operation make 80m a real DX band for me now. There are some really big signals only 1Khz away in the pileups sometimes. Now I can't tell they're even there. I used to be able to copy strong nearby signals just from the phase noise pumping on my IC-746PRO and IC-775DSP radios.
This is a real value product considering it has the same receiver technologies of its big brother radios in the Yaesu family.
If you're looking for a great receiver at a value price, this is it.
 
K4TPC Rating: 5/5 Feb 20, 2014 19:37 Send this review to a friend
SUPERIOR AUDIO QUALITY AND DIGITAL OPERATION  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I like the quality of Yaesu transceivers and I haven't been disappointed yet with their performance. I once owned a Yaesu FT-2000D two years ago but I sold it due to antenna restrictions of a previous townhouse residence. I recently renewed my FCC license after a two year gap and I was using a barely functioning 30 year old ICOM transceiver. I researched many different HF transceivers to replace what I had and I decided to buy a Yaesu FTDX-3000. I also bought the digital voice recorder DVS-6 and the MD-100 mic. It was like going from Indian smoke signals to the Starship Enterprise! The DSP works extremely well. I always get "nice audio" reports on voice mode. The 3000's USB serial port allows amateur digital modes without having to use a "interface box" between the transceiver and a computer by using the computer's internal sound device for transmit and receive. Yaesu's USB drivers produce for a connected computer PTT control, CAT control, and audio in and out. I have used the following amateur digital modes successfully so far with the 3000: BPSK31, JT65-HF, JT9 and WSPR. The digital modes software setup for the FTDX-3000 was easy and fast. If you do SWL like I enjoy, the 3000's scope helps make tuning a breeze by showing many nearby broadcast stations' "peaks." This transceiver has surpassed my expectations; I knew it would be great... it turned out to be awesome.
 
NG9W Rating: 5/5 Feb 17, 2014 18:36 Send this review to a friend
Finest Radio Ever Owned  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've had this radio now for about 2 months. Previous HF rigs include Yaesu FT-950, FT-757GX, Kenwood TS-870 and TS-440S.

First comment is about the notorious MENU system. It is a *whole* lot easier to use than the one in the FT-950, especially for setting DNR noise
reduction level. I use the C.S. key for quick access to the RF power level Menu 177. There are 196 different menu settings, but their shear
number doesn't have to be overwhelming. Just pick the ones you need to change, and leave the defaults (that is, ignore) the rest.

For me I changed just a few:

005 MY CALL to NG9W
006 MY CALL TIME to 2sec
017 F KEYER TYPE to ACs (I plug my paddles into the front key socket)
018 R KEYER TYPE to OFF (I plug a tuner pulser into the rear key socket)
038 CAT RATE to 38400bps
059 CW AUTO MODE to ON (to allow CW keying in SSB mode)
065 PC KEYING to DTR (for TX in sound card software)
075 DATA IN SELECT to USB (to use internal sound chip for sound card modes)
077 DATA OUT LEVEL to 25 (see below about USB audio driver)

When you change a MENU setting from its default, the value color changes from blue to white.

To use the internal sound card and the USB port for CAT control, you need to install the Yaesu USB driver, available from their website. I
noticed the sound chip seems to run a little hot and overdrive the PSK31 software's encoder. This required I open the Windows Control Panel
Sound Applet, select the USB Audio Codec Microphone, and turn down its level to 6. Along with this, I turned down MENU 077 from 50 to 25. Without making the Windows changes, I would have had to turn down MENU 077 to level 2 not to overdrive the PSK31 encoder.

One of my motivators for this particular rig was the 9 MHz 1st IF Out port. I run this over to an LP-PAN 2 SDR IQ Panadapter, a Creative Labs E-
MU 0202 sound card, and into NaP3 panadapter software. I used a similar setup with my FT-950.

The FTdx3000 receiver performance numbers are comparable to the FlexRadio Flex-5000, superior to the entire FTdx9000 series, and second only to
the FTdx5000. The difference from FTdx5000 hardly justifies twice the cost.

A previous reviewer noted trouble reading button labels. I have not had his experience despite having sight in only one eye. Now without the
cataract surgery I might have a different story to tell.

73,
David, NG9W
 
K9TWO Rating: 5/5 Feb 5, 2014 14:19 Send this review to a friend
Super Rig  Time owned: more than 12 months
Have had this rig for a year now. I have no problems with the menus at all. It has the lowest noise floor of any rig I have. I use a Elecraft P3 with mine for flexibility and sure glad I bought both. I have several rigs but the FTDX3000 is my choice for receive. Use the MD-100 mic with it and audio pretty much at the default settings. I am not a contester, mostly just monitor the bands . I also have an Icom 7600 which has not been turned on other than to make comparisons. The FTDX always has about a 3 to 5 S unit lower noise floor than the 7600. The like new almost never used 7600 with box is up for sale. I really love the FTDX and Elecraft P3 combo.. No extra computer or sound card needed. I can't ever imagine why I would need a 24 inch screen to show signals on the band. My favorite feature on the FTDX is the contour control. Used properly, you can notch or peak an SSB signal. Try that with other rigs. I have been a ham since 1959 at the age of 14 years old, have owned tons of rigs and this one has been the best. I will never buy another rig that is not down conversion. The next greatest thing is the I.F. Output port on the back. This rig has roofing filters that really work. Roofing filters that are in the 60 MHz range are a joke. Sorry but that's my opinion. Also, don't use a switching supply with this rig or any other rig because they are just broadband noise makers. Use a linear supply like Yaesu makes or a battery with a trickle charger. I just moth balled a Yaesu switching supply that put out more trash on the 40 meter band that I thought was coming from nearby power lines. About drove me nuts. I know many will have different opinions on switching supplies, but unless you have a linear supply to compare it to, you will never know you have a broadband rf noise problem. Take a look inside a switching supply and note the ferrite chokes being used. What do you think their purpose is? Yea your switching supply might work great with your $10,000 HP dual trace scope, but that's NOT a sensitive ham receiver. Anyway, you can't go wrong with the FTDX-3000. BTW, another HUGE broadband rf noise maker is these stupid CFL light bulbs. Found that out a few days ago when my Wife KC9QQE turned on the closet light and I suddenly noticed this raspy noise up and down the band. I could see it on the P3 monitor also. 73 K9TWO
 
K1PMA Rating: 5/5 Jan 25, 2014 15:25 Send this review to a friend
Very capable radio. No friend of the menu system though.  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
If I could I would give 4.5 stars instead of 5. Reason: the complex menu system. Otherwise, the USB ports did not work properly until months after I bought the rig with a firmware update. Now no problems. Overall this radio is a very solid performer. I mainly do SSB and occasionally digital modes. In order to get good audio reports you have to tweak the audio settings and get a decent (like Heil Gold) mic. Very good selection of included filters. Main reason I sold my previous Kenwood 590S was the IF port which the 3000 has which you need if you want to use PowerSDR IF Stage and have a 'pretend' Flexradio :-)
Still, for the price this is a very good radio and has not let me know in the 9 months I have owned it.
 
K5DSQ Rating: 5/5 Dec 13, 2013 12:17 Send this review to a friend
Great Rig!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Let me first state that I date back to backlit dials and glowing tubes. I do miss the days when we were tickled to death just getting something put together that got us on the air. After numerous Heathkits, Icoms, Kenwoods and Yaesus over the years my first introduction to a menu driven transceiver was the Yaesu FT-2900. Like most, I struggled with the programming and still can't make much in the way of field changes without the programming software and/or manual. From there I moved on to the FT-950 which once again was a challenge. I finally got to the point where I could handle most menu items/changes until I blew that all to hell getting into the digital modes which required interfacing my computer and software programs like Ham Radio Deluxe with the 950. I cannot tell you how many times I gave up in frustration or how close the whole shack came to being listed in the classified section of this website. However, like most of my experiences with amateur radio some really nice talented guys came to my rescue and helped me get things (mainly my mindset) pointed in the right direction.

The FT DX 3000 has been no exception. It's a highly flexible, complex system, packaged in a small box and a new users who does not take the time to familiarize him or herself with this wonderful radio is going to be frustrated. After a great deal of research, reading, study, comparison and now operating I am very impressed with this radio. Not that I consider myself any kind of expert. Interfacing to my computer via the 3000's USB port went far faster and easier than with my FT-950's serial port. Other than a few level adjustments and setting the correct baud rate it was almost plug and play with HRD. The receiver is excellent (Icom 7600 & FT DX 5000 class) and I struggle to find any fault with it. The transmitter runs at full rated power, gets great audio and signal reports and the digital modes are a breeze with the built in interface/soundcard. The three antenna port options are an excellent addition. The updated band/audio scope is great and I find navigating the menu is very easy. Updates are much easier via the USB connection. Yaesu has done a great job by giving us old timers a very realistic analog signal meter.

When fellow hams complain to me about these new menu driven radios I suggest they look into the cockpit of any new aircraft. Menu driven digital electronic flight systems have made all the difference in the world to pilot situation awareness, cockpit resource management, navigation, dependability and most importantly safety. The complexity of having to scan several instruments, dials, meters and turn numerous knobs to complete the task of flying is greatly reduced. I find when I finally get my head out of my lower extremities and honestly compare the features, flexibility and options that these new menu driven radios provide, it's hard for me to complain or rate them poorly. We would have killed to get this kind of performance, reliability and flexibility back in the early days. The backlit dials, glowing tube with hundreds of knobs were great but these radios provide operating options we could only dream of. Rotary phones, glowing tubes and punch card programming were great in their day, but I have no desire to go back in that direction. Many thanks to Steve, KV4AN and others for their help (both pros and cons) and direction in selecting this radio. The Yaesu FT DX 3000 is an easy 5 in my book.
 
W8RMV Rating: 4/5 Dec 1, 2013 08:47 Send this review to a friend
Nice but....  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
First, my transceiver orientation comes from my experience with an ICOM IC-751A & a Kenwood TS-590. I am not an ICOM and/or Kenwood nut, devotee, wacko, etc. They just happen to be the first radios I have owned. I bought my 3000 used, for a good price.

Observations-
1. Front panel buttons are hard to read without very good light. My very old IC751A is much better as is the TS590. I can easily read the front panel on my IC751A just from the light of my computer monitor. I cannot make out any non-lit button on the 3000. For some reason Yaesu used small light grey lettering instead of bigger white lettering. This is a big deal to me. Yaesu screwed up big time, especially when you consider it’s prospective mostly older clientele. Every time I use the 3000, I am struck by the stupidity of this. BTW, I can read a newspaper without difficulty & without any glasses. Keep a very brightly lit room, have a flashlight nearby or memorize the buttons.
2. S/W F/W updating, although not real difficult, is not as ez as my TS590. Where Kenwood provides one file for all updating, Yaesu is in the 1980’s with individual packages that each have their own peculiarities. Silly in this day & age. Yaesu has provided a few updates, and recently some decent emulation S/W for your PC. But the emulation S/W will not give full control, unfortunately. But the S/W is free, just like Kenwood does for the 590.
3. I find navigating the menu system a bit more difficult than my TS590. Maybe that is because I am forced into the menu system. Yaesu did dual purpose some buttons, but they needed to triple purpose some (BTW, the dual purpose in not mentioned in my owners manual. More on that later). This is a lot easier than pulling up the menu & then searching for the adjustment (like RF power).
4. No RF power control on the front panel like my 751A & 590. Yes, you have to open then search the menu or set up the CS button. But even then it is a 2 step process. Power out is a 100W on most bands but falls short 6 watts on 80M.
5. Minimal to no definition of the various menu items in the owners manual. And in the first part of the Manual where they initially discuss a button/feature, Yaesu fails to provide a reference page where more detail is sometimes offered further into the manual. The TS-590 manual was better in that regard.
6. Clarifier knob (~30mm in diameter), although large, is made of hollow plastic. It is a big knob that has no “weight” to it & little damping. I added lead shot to the cavities which helped a bit.
7. VFO tune rate is not adjustable as it is on the TS590. At least I have not found it in the menu. VFO knob feels OK, but my 751A feels better.
8. Surprisingly internal Antenna Tuner not nearly as good as the 590. The 590 is faster & will tune way beyond a 3:1 match. The Yaesu seems to be limited to ~3:1 and is very slow. I know, get a better antenna system. Still…
9. 3000 doesn’t appear to have any ALC overshoot. Nice.
10. The DNR is less watery/rubbery sounding than that of the TS590
11. The NB did take care of a “tick” problem I was having one day.
12. The TFT analog S-Meter emulation is quite good. You can also select many other signals like: current, voltage, ALC, Comp., … the TS-590 did not have those options, but my 751A does. The Bar graph version offers a peak hold feature for power out, which the TS-590 really needed & should have had. No peak hold is available for the analog selection. The Bar & Analog meters don’t always agree. And the emulation S/W can give even a different value (ALC for instance) from the bar & analog values shown on the radio. A man with 3 watches….
13. A lot of CW/Digital features for the CW/Digital lover or those who have trouble copying CW. Key port on the front panel is nice.
14. 0.5PPM stability standard
15. The Contour control is one of my favorite features on the 3000. It really reduces noise without the digital effect. Awesome.
16. It has a ton of convenience inputs & outputs in the back of the radio, much more so than the TS590
17. There are a 196 of menu items that can help personalize the radio to your tastes. Some may view that as a gripe. As one friend extols the virtues of his Drake TR7 Pro: “No stinking menus!”
18. The scope, although pretty small, is still useful to me (see… I ain’t as blind as you thought on no.1)
19. I’d probably give it a 3.5 to 3.75, rounded up to 4. The 3000 lost nearly a point due to number one above.


As always, YMMV. 73- Bob


 
K9OM Rating: 3/5 Nov 30, 2013 19:51 Send this review to a friend
Needs improvement  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I'm sharing my perspective about the FTdx3000 in case someone is reading these reviews to determine if the FTdx3000 is the radio for them. It's clear from previous reviews about the FTdx3000 that some people love the radio and others do not. It's wonderful that we have alot of great choices today when choosing a radio that will meet our needs. Personally, I'd like to see Yaesu pattern a new radio more closely to a FT-1000-MP. (very similar radio but with down conversion and narrow roofing filters for better selectivity, and with the improved NR the 3000 features)

POSITIVES: solid cast aluminum construction, attractive looking, USB rig control, both Analog or Bar S-meter, outstanding NR, good variety of roofing filters are included, user friendly Menu system, 3 step ATT and 3-step amplifier, larger than normal RIT control.

One of the reasons I purchased the FTdx3000 was because I read a Yaesu advertisement that said this radio follows in the heritage of the FT-1000-MP which was my all-time favorite radio. Been a ham for 50 years and have owned dozens of great radios but the FT-1000-MP's stayed in my shack alot longer than any other radio.

I wish Yaesu hadn't referenced the FTdx-3000 to a 1000-MP as the 3000 is a much cheaper built radio.

NEGATIVES: the FTdx-3000 is smaller than the FT-1000-MP, does not have a built-in power supply, has very few front panel controls, has a whimpy Main Tuning dial that doesn't spin freely, and has no Shuttle Jog. Some other features about the FTdx3000 that I don't like are: front panel labeling is pale and very hard to read, Main Tuning resolution is too fast and can only be adjusted down to 1hz per revolution which makes tuning in weak stations difficult, audio "pop" on Bose headphones when volume control hits the 0900 position, USB connection easily interupted by RF, the Manual is not very detailed and doesn't have an Index, updating software could be streamlined,
antenna tuner is only good up to about a 3 to 1 SWR, there's no SSB power control on the front panel, static "pops" are worse on the FTdx3000 than on some modern day down conversion radios.

Hopefully, Yaesu will adress some of these issues in future software updates. Such as, provide a main tuning setting of 0.1 or 0.3hz per resolution, make the radio less prone to static pop desensing the receiver, make software updates quicker to install, and stop the 0900 position audio pop.

But other features like the dull and hard to read front panel labeling, not having a built-in power supply, and having a heavy free wheeling main tuning dial... may require a new Model... how about a FTdx-1000MP.

73- hope you find a radio you love and I hope to work you on the bands!

 
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