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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Kenwood 251A Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood 251A
Kenwood 251A Reviews: 10 Average rating: 4.6/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: 2 meter 50 watt fm transceiver with extended receiver
Product is not in production.
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You can write your own review of the Kenwood 251A.

ON9CC Rating: 5/5 Dec 28, 2008 07:02 Send this review to a friend
Though radio's !!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I own a TM-251e and TM-451e. Bought them used and they have been in my shack for 6,5 years now and are used nearly daily.

As with all the Kenwood stuff I owned over the years (TS-440,690,711,811,TM-221,231,D700,TH-25,26,77,D7...most of them bought new and never had any problems with them) these 2 mobile rigs are very good performers. Easy to use, high power, CTCSS.
Only 2 small issues: the display lighting is not working anymore on the 251 and the memory battery on the 251 has reached the end of its life, resulting in loosing the memory settings. Nevertheless these 2 TRX's are keepers and if you're looking for a nice (and quiet!! ... no fan!) FM rig for the shack, these are the ones to choose.
EA2FL Rating: 5/5 May 3, 2007 08:51 Send this review to a friend
Deserves highest note!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Very good radio. Good audio. High power. Mine is adjusted for 1, 10 or a bit more than 50w output at 13.8VDC. RX is high signal to noise ratio over a wide freq range. OK that does not transmit UHF, but who wants to, if 2m gives much more range!

Repeater function, 2m TX while 70cm RX, is very usefull. Just leave radio in your car while you receive VHF and transmit UHF on your handheld, indoors.

Someone gave just a 2/5 'cause display fault. Every 251 will fail in poor contacts of front display. Just, once in your life, open radio and put some contact cleaner on conector inside. You just need to remove 3 buttons, 1 bolt and 8 screws to be able to disconnect front panel. Easy!

Very small and very good radio, even for nowadays standards!
K8WRS Rating: 5/5 Mar 22, 2004 00:45 Send this review to a friend
Under Rated Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
The Kenwood 251A has extended 2M and 440 receive.
It will do one way "440 to 2M" Cross Band Repeat.
It will also do 2M memory forwarding repeat on 2M.
There is an expanded memory modual available for more channels.
It was a short run radio as were the other 2M radios that would do Cross Band Repeat from 440, I beleive because these radios were too much competion for their full Dual Band Radios.
I used it as a repeater in my car and camper so I could communicate with my hand held while at a distance from the 251A. My hand held acted as a good 2M repeater receiver but I needed the 251A to re-transmitt my signal at high power to the local repeaters.
Many owners are unaware that the Cross band function is there because the instructions to activate it were not included with the radio.
VE4HQ Rating: 2/5 Aug 25, 2003 14:40 Send this review to a friend
OK BUT---  Time owned: more than 12 months
Has worked great over the years but,-like my Kenwood 440, it is now sometimes looses the display to giberish. A hard smack to the bottom of the case clears it up for now. Did Kenwood use that wierd potting compound in this rig also ??
WB1BPV Rating: 5/5 Aug 25, 2003 08:32 Send this review to a friend
Great little radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought the 251 new a few years ago for the mobile.It performs like a pro.It has a small footprint so no matter how little room you have, it will always fit somewhere in the car.I use power poles with it now so its even easier to take from 1 car to the other.I can listen to aircraft as they approach the NY and CT airports.The only negative I found is that the memories are battery controlled.I thought I had a blown chip when the memories kept dissappearing, but it was a dead battery.Replacing the battery is not easy.You have to gently and totally dismantle the front display to acces it.Other than that, I give it a 5!!!
N9LBW Rating: 5/5 Jan 6, 2002 03:21 Send this review to a friend
Excellent 2 meter mobile  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had no problems with this radio, very easy to operate, very good output, good receive and the crossband repeat works well. Kenwood blew it by discontinuing this radio. It performs much better than the TM231s and TM241s.
KE4SKY Rating: 5/5 Oct 19, 2001 16:02 Send this review to a friend
Best Kept Secret!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Several friends and I have used three TM251s ever since they were introduced "new" models. Mine now resides in our RACES equipment cache where it may serve as a backup voice or data radio, or in a Pelican box with a battery as a portable one-way, cross-band replexer, or frequency-agile, repeater remote receiver.

This enables using low power UHF inside a building to cross-band through the mobile placed on a rooftop or off site in a vehicle, to access a VHF repeater which you can't otherwise reach from inside a hospital complex or other steel-reinforced building. For this to work you have to listen to the 2 meter repeater on the VHF side of a dual-band HT having dual-receive, unless your portable is able to program a cross-band memory in a duplex split, because the TM251 is "one way" and doesn't retransmit the received 2 meter signal and back to you on UHF.

Explore unsupported memory function #69, it gives you a choice between RPT - as simplex repeater using the digital voice recorder to retransmit your signal in echo mode on the same frequency or CROSS, to simultaneously take a received UHF signal and retransmit it on the selected VHF simplex frequency or repeater input. Nice wrinkle!

73 de KE4SKY
Virginia State RACES Training Officer
VE1SLY Rating: 4/5 Feb 20, 2001 22:09 Send this review to a friend
Good radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Haven't owned this radio too long. Bought it used from another ham. Just bought a glass mount antenna, haven't used it in the car yet. Works well in the house, however, having some problems with the mic. Takes a few pushes of the Call button to actually go into call mode. As well as Mr and VFO. Awesome power, big heatsink. No CTCSS decoder built in, must buy seperatly. Can't find and mods or adjustments on the net for this radio either. If you have info, please email me. Nice receive coverage as well, 118-174, and 300-470.

KB8POA Rating: 5/5 Nov 14, 2000 15:41 Send this review to a friend
A great 2m mobile!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had mine for over 4 years now and I'm quite happy with it. I bought it for packet as it has the data port on the back. I've found that to be quite useful, especially when it comes to switching between packet and voice.

The only problems I've had with it have been minor. The backlighting on the display burnt out and I also need to adjust the ctcss encoder level, as it became audible recently.

But I really love the radio. It has great extended receive. I believe it's something like 108 - 174 on the VHF side and at least 300 - 470 on UHF. One neat thing the radio will do is crossband repeat. I've used that feature quite a bit in the past.

I'd reccomend this radio to anyone looking for a nice used 2m mobile.
WB6MYL Rating: 5/5 Sep 2, 2000 23:25 Send this review to a friend
a workhorse for 5 years  Time owned: more than 12 months
I don't know why Kenwood had such a short production run on the 251A; has a great extended receive unlike 231a or 241A;has been in my car and used (almost) every day for five years; never a problem; reports of audio are excellent and receive has good audio quality; I firmly beleive that with price competition, QA suffered with subsequent 241 and (current) 261 models; keep in mind, price of 261 is about half of what the 251 was; Not many popping up in the used market; it tells you something. Good luck. Phillip W. Harris, PhD. P.C.

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