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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | TYT TH9800 Help


Reviews Summary for TYT TH9800
TYT TH9800 Reviews: 24 Average rating: 3.4/5 MSRP: $273.00 Amazon
Description: Quad band transceiver. 10, 6, 2 Meters and 7o CM 50 watts on 6 and 2 meters, 40 watts an 10 meters and 70 CM.
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.tyt888.com
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VK5CQ Rating: 4/5 Jun 19, 2015 03:35 Send this review to a friend
A "Good Chinese" (as N6PET writes...)  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
TYT's TH-9800 Quad Band radio is said, by some, to be a [near-]clone of Yaesu's FT-8900R, but it seems to go beyond Yaesu, in some areas.

Eg, when life is in danger (ie, in a genuine emergency) & no one replies from all the Ham Repeaters you know about in the area, you can- without a mod - try CB, BOTH 11m (AM only) &, in AU, UHF (near 477 MHz).

Why AU's regulator (ACMA.gov.au) forbids Hams' use of a radio, like this one - designed with such flexibility (out-of-the-box) - in this wide, brown land (especially, in remote part of the Outback), I'll never fathom; it reportedly needs to be programmed to transmit ONLY on Amateur frequencies, to make it legal for Ham use.

(Good luck if your 4WD vehicle fails somewhere far from the nearest Ham repeater, eg, in the Outback, & need to call for assistance, in such an emergency. If you haven't brought along a costly (eg, Codan) Outback radio or a SatPhone, you could wait a lot longer; may you last so long...)

More subtle indicators of Excellent Design quality by TYT include:

+ a separate (if mini-USB) port for programming its memories (ie, no need to pull out the mic. before plugging-in the cable, AND you might still have a mini-USB to USB cable around, from earlier generations of gear... No need to buy a programming cable)

+ a manual with very high quality English (OK, some improvements are possible, but all the bits we've read in it, so far, are clear & easily understandable)

+ sensible, easy-to-learn configuration (via control panel) PLUS (cost-free) programming software (for Windows)

Other conveniences:

+ power connector is like those used on radios by ICOM (& other makers)

+ multi-function mic has 2 slide switches for: Lock & Backlight

+ "Preppers" might find its built-in Scrambler useful [after Armageddon]; of course, it's feature (generally) unavailable to Hams

Something you can "stumble over" (read this BEFORE you bother your supplier to get the same info):

+ only the Left-side is Quad Band; the Right-side is Dual Band (2m & 70cm)

Some issues yet to be solved (after less than a week of having a loaner TH-9800 in the shack - on a dummy-load, mostly), either by me or TYT (in a future version?):

- out-of-the-box, each key-press causes a loud "Beep!" (there's Off setting (but no volume control for it); in menu & in Prog'g S/W)

- control head doesn't seem to be "invertable" (ie, heatsink's external fins are BELOW the radio, with potential to heat it, eg, during long "overs" ...as a yellow warning label - on the top of the radio - puts it: "High-temp. surface, do not touch after long-term use!" Given such a warning, I'd aim to keep its Tx Power on Low or Med.1, except in a case of Emergency; then making only short transmission, in Summer or when in the hot Outback.)

(On second thought, maybe this ISN'T the radio to depend on in the Aussie Outback, except after dark, when it's cooler...?)

If it continues to work as it is today (ie, well, AFAIK), I'll give it Full Marks. We'll review it again, if it changes for the worse, but I don't expect it to. Of course, YMMV. BTW, I've yet to learn how to tell it the one I borrowed (for pre-purchase eval.) is the "Plus" version...?

If you like to direct-import your Ham gear, I'm eliably told to pass this tip on, to you: Check places like AliExpress.com (use their app for larger discounts, when applicable) for low prices.

An excellent [ongoing] TH-9800 review (w/ tips) is here:

+ http://N6PET.com/tyt9800-good-chinese/
 
N9SSU Rating: 2/5 Apr 5, 2015 16:20 Send this review to a friend
This radio has potential. - Great points, Bad points.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Fair & Balanced review, which I also provided the same review, on the site I bought one of the units from:

PROS:

*4 bands, full power
*EASY to use
*Price lower than the Yaesu it is cloned from
*Free separation kit, mounting head, programming software (even if it is klunky to use)
*GREAT sensitivity, almost NO intermod in the big city full of RF. GREAT transmit audio. (based on 2/440).
*GREAT receive audio. Loud and clear, but on the bass side.
*Decent scanning speed.
*AM receive for 11 meters and AIR band.
*You like 6 meters FM and/or repeaters? You will love it. I did.

CONS:

**Hit or miss Quality Control (mostly miss).
**Multiple birdies in the 10 Meter band, giving intermittent S9/30 reading for a few seconds at a time. (At first you think someone is actually passing a signal on the radio)! I am not the only one, read about it on the internet where others experienced it.

****** Had 2 units go bad. 1st one in 6 months (2 meters would only transmit exciter power). 2nd one died in 5 MINUTES. (440 died this time, transmit & receive) - Check the internet, the 2 meters issue is possibly a resistor with insufficient solder causing it to "creep" or lift off the board. Honestly, looks like they use solder PASTE! Which means long term reliability is a questionable thing.

**Gets HOT! Make sure you put at least 1 (or more) external fans on it.
**The Microphone is substandard. Up/Down buttons failing after a few months on 1st unit.
**I say this about every radio these days, but it REALLY applies to this one as it has over 800 memories and each memory has several settings you can set. --- It is 2015 people, radios have changed and almost all need to be programmed via PC to get full value out of them! ESPECIALLY THIS ONE!
**TYT will NOT warranty these units. Check sellers return policy.
**TYT will NOT release schematics. - They say it is secret and proprietary. Really? We are HAMs. A lot of us can't work on SM boards, but we CAN read schematics and troubleshoot.

It is a shame because their TH-9000 line of radio are SOLID and fill a void for the 220 band. This one has just been rebranded as MKII - but NOTHING has been specified as being changed! (UPDATE: The MKII or PLUS version has: crossband feature added a "TOT, Time Out Timer", the "busy" feature not allowing you to key up when a repeater is transmitting has been removed, reportedly the 2 meter drivers are different values and have improved solder on them).

Also please note, take the "voltage range" serious. If you "spike" this with voltage that goes up and down or constantly run it over the recommend voltage, you will fry it.

The display unit, the display itself is the SAME from a Yaesu! Even the beep tones are the same. The chassis looks exact too. One has to wonder if they are not sharing parts suppliers!

This radio does have potential. It is an analog radio with no digital or other frills, that the main 3 are shoving down people's throats these days. At the price point, no warranty and limited return time is a gamble.

Don't dismiss the Chinese radios. Yes they are clones. Yes they are inferior. Yes it is questionable if they are all coming from the same factory. But questionable were the Japanese when they entered the market. Now, see where they are at.

Wish I could offer a YES as an entry level, first radio, 2nd radio for the house or car. But I can't. You will enjoy the radio, but you are gambling. (UPDATE: IF you buy one, make sure it is from a US SELLER and make sure they have a "return" period. (There is no factory warranty on this. If you think I am wrong and before you flame, look at the box and search the manual for it.)
 
W8EDV Rating: 5/5 Apr 3, 2015 00:42 Send this review to a friend
Better than expected  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I purchased one of these TH 9800 radios almost a year ago, it was the original version before they came up with the " Plus" model that has the Firmware updated which eliminated the complaints in the previous models. Mine worked flawlessly, full output on all bands, good build quality, tight knobs, they are not as sloppy and loose feeling as my Kenwood V71A. I purchased two more of the Plus models recently and they are also working perfectly. The plus models have a Time Out Timer that I use on crossbanding that actually work. The timer drops the crossband mode at the set time the you set it for, in case some people are long winded and do not allow the repeater to reset, then after the TH 9800 resets in a short time it will resume crossbanding on it's own.
The receiver is great, the transmit audio reports are also great, if I don't tell them it's not my Kenwood they don't even know, (I was asked if it was my Kenwood several times). I really don't understand all the complaints about no support, if your radio has a problem send and email to TYT and they will correct it. In my case I ran a firmware update on my original TH 9800 and I messed up somehow and clicked the wrong menu item, and the radio would not power up anymore.

I tried to find a service tech but nobody would work on it if I did not buy it from them, so I emailed TYT , and I described the isssue, in about a week I got a reply telling me to ship the radio to a place in California and they in turn would send me a NEW radio, which they did, and it was a new Plus model and works perfectly. The email from TYT was very polite and they apologized for the inconvenience and hoped that I enjoy the radio.
They also sent me a copy of the email they sent to the company that sent me a new one. It directed the dealer to simply ship me a new radio, and send the old one back to them and they would credit him the cost etc. The only cost I encountered was the UPS shipping charge.
I thought that was pretty good considering many reviews I had read about failures in the earlier models and inability to find service. All 3 of my TH 9800's are doing fine and it was a lot less expensive than buying 3 new Yaesu Quad Band rigs. Granted the Yaesu has a slightly better quality radio, however I bought 2 of the TH 9800's for what I would pay for one Yaesu 8900.

I'm very happy with my TH 9800's they look great, and I think the build quailty is excellent and best of all they all work perfectly. I have one set up for a base on a TekPower Switching Power supply, and that is feeding a Cushcraft 5/8 wave 6 meter mono band vertical up at 35 feet, also using a Comet Duplexer to a Cushcraft dual band vertical also about 35 feet the signal reports are excellent and all SWR's are under 1:5:1 on all the bands I'm using. I'm not using the 10 FM band on it as I have that on my Yaesu FT 2000D and no 10 FM repeaters anywhere in my area. As far as the TYT TH 9800 goes I believe it's a great radio, I programmed them both manually as well as with software and that worked well too.

If your 9800 has any issues and it's an older non Plus model try an email to TYT and explain your problem, chances are they will repair it or have it replaced as they did mine. I have 3 of them and I'm very happy with each one. I have been in this hobby since 1976, I was first licensed in June, 1976 and have owned almost every major name brand that we've seen since I became a ham in 1976, Icom, Yaesu, Kenwood, Heathkits, Alinco and more. The TYT 9800's I have work as well as any of those that I have owned if not better.

73's de W8EDV and if you're on the fence on buying one, give it a try , in my opinion these are fine radios.
 
KA8GKT Rating: 0/5 Mar 17, 2015 14:49 Send this review to a friend
NO FACTORY SUPPORT, RF DRIVER BURNS HOLE IN BOARD  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
DO NOT BUY. FAILED LESS THAN SIX MONTHS IN MOBILE SERVICE. THE RF MOSFET DRIVER TRANSISTOR FAILED AND BURNT A HOLE THROUGH PCB. WE CALLED AROUND LOOKING FOR A SERVICE DEPOT OR FACTORY SUPPORT.
NICELY PUT, NO ONE WOULD TOUCH IT. NO HEAT SINK COMPOUND UNDER THE DRIVER AT ALL: CLEAN AND PERFECT METAL. I'D INCLUDE A PICTURE HERE IF THIS SITE WOULD ALLOW. I'M GOING TO DO UGLY BUG WIRING REPAIR ABOVE THE BOARD. 03-17-15: GREGG AT RADIO COMMUNICATIONS OF OHIO. BTW ALMOST IDENTICAL TO A YAESU FT-8800 PCB.
 
KK4CZT Rating: 0/5 Mar 9, 2015 16:23 Send this review to a friend
POS  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
This looks to be a knock off of the Yaesu 8900 that is where the comparison stops, this is one of the worst radios that I have had the misfortune to buy the Wouxun mobile is a way better radio for about the same price, DO NOT BUY THIS POS.
 
W0TRJ Rating: 4/5 Feb 3, 2015 08:32 Send this review to a friend
Needs mods to work right  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Radio has been working fine after doing some mods to make it work as it should.

Did the Tx busy lock out mod with the Firmware update and seemed to fix this problem.

Transmit audio reports said it had way too much bass and sounded muffled.

Replaced the stock Mic element, Now I have good TX audio reports.

No problems with the programming software.
Also Usb Programming cable worked fine for me too.

External speaker jack is now inop after plugging in a external speaker, now it will only work with the external speaker plugged in.

RF output on high power only 35watts on 2-meters.

Will update this post later after doing more testing on the other bands.

Lot's of info and mod files for downloading on the TH-9800 Yahoo group.
 
M6JGX Rating: 1/5 Jan 28, 2015 15:35 Send this review to a friend
6 months old Finals Gone!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I've owned a TYT 9800 for 6 months.

I only ever use it for short range UHF repeater work (See Below) on LOW POWER. My antenna has a SWR of 1:1.

Last week it stopped transmitting, I suspect it's the known problem with the finals. Unfortunately the (ebay) seller I purchased it from is no longer trading. Ebay don't want to know, TYT haven't answered any of my emails.

It was my main transceiver in my van. I liked the remote head so I could mount the body out of the way and it being "so called" Quad band.

Now when it says it's quad band..... Here are my findings.

10m - Rubbish - Using a Modulator mag mount tuned for 29 Mhz stations 4 miles away were barely detectable (S1?) where my President Lincoln was receiving the same station at an S8-9 on the same antenna.

6m - No Idea - Never heard anyone on there even under lift conditions. Couldn't open a 6m repeater 6miles away.

2m - OK - If your not near a mobile (cell) mast. On 2m it seemed to prefer to listen to Cell masts than repeaters. If you were within a 1 mile of a phone (cell) mast (and in a modern urban environment who isn't) it is unusable.

70cm - Good - Seemed to do the job well. Would get in to most local repeaters on low power. Audio reports were always positive.


The programming lead / interface, as you'll probably have already read is a joke.
IT IS NOT USB, the official cables also use a fake prolific chip that will also cause problems.
Saying that It's not the most complicated radio to manually program.

It was also promised that you would be able to program it to use 4m (70mhz). I'm not sure if they have ever or will ever sort that out


Would I buy another or recommend this radio - NO
 
VA7ARI Rating: 4/5 Jan 6, 2015 20:19 Send this review to a friend
Good value for the money  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have had this unit for about one week now. Power output is good with good audio on the other end. Receive is excellent across all bands. Menu system is a bit of a bear. I use the computer software to program repeaters etc (right now its best to use CHIRP to set up your channels and export it as a *.dat file for the proprietary software to load onto the radio but eventually I think the CHIRP guys will sort out how to program it directly) I had one problem with the "busy lock" not allowing me to break into repeater conversations when it detected a carrier (all the time during a net). This is a firmware defect. Since the radio is new at this time you must expect a few firmware bugs. This is fairly easily fixed but you need to join up the Th-9800 user group on yahoo (https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/TYT_TH9800/info) for answers and help with such issues. I'm sure after about a year most of these things will have been ironed out.
 
KQ4BX Rating: 5/5 Dec 30, 2014 08:49 Send this review to a friend
Revised model, called Plus  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
the radio arrived yesterday, so I will have to update after I do more with it. The box had a sticker referring to my radio being a Plus model. I have to assume that they made some firmware updates, so many of should see if the firmware can be updated on your older versions.
The audio report was great, and the reports were that it was no different than the great audio on my Icom ID-5100. Being a Ft-8800 owner for many years, I couldn't help but notice that the look and programming were very much identical to my Ft-8800. I found a quirky thing with the radio at first, I was sure I was in VFO mode and tried to enter a frequency in via the keypad on the microphone. I could not get the frequency to stick, it would fail on the last digit. So i tuned to it with the knob on the radio and I had not problem after I put the first repeater in. I turned on ARS, and found that you have to turn it on in each band, it will not assume that you want repeater offsets on each band. ARS worked very well, giving + when it was needed, - when it was needed, and simplex when I was on a simplex frequency. I found that I had to change the shift on 6M and 10m, and I also had to change the step to enter some of the frequencies of my local repeaters. That was fine, the radio did all I asked it to do, with no other odd occurrences. The radio was $259.00 and free prime 2 day shipping from Amazon. The radio comes with all you need to remote it, that includes a bracket for the control head, and a very long cable to remote the control head. Putting frequencies in memory is identical to the way Yaesu does it on the Ft-8800. I will try to update as I get the radio fully programmed and use it more.
 
DH6YHO Rating: 2/5 Oct 5, 2014 00:02 Send this review to a friend
Bad modulation & more dislikes  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently purchased a TH-9800 from a domestic dealer. This FT-8900 copy seems to be similar to the Euron MT-9500, so this review obviously covers both radios. I have 2 FT-8900s, know them very well and of course compare the TH-9800 with them.

My first impression was wow, what Yaesu did not manage to realize with the FT-8900 TYT did! It even covers 11 m and provides 6.25 & 8.33 KHz steps. AM is receive only on all bands, but that was acceptable since I usually just listen to truck CB stations during my long trips.

The first QSOs however were a disappointment. Although not mentioning the new radio most stations reported a muffled modulation, no matter what I tried to do. The TH-9800 provides 3 bandwidths wide, mid & narrow. Using Narrow was worst, so common reports. Also the audio quality from the speaker sounded muffled, only one of a pile of external speakers sounded well.

Further con I noticed was a delayed TX / RX switch. None of my radios is similar. Early morning chat on my favourite repeater is a challenge due to short breaks. Hard to hit the PTT just in time.

Scan works very much slower than on the FT-8900. In addition, when tuning manually one side of the radio audio is interrupted on the other side at each step.
S-meter on 10 (11) m is useless. Most signals are full scale. V/UHF is ok, I could not check on 6 m due to restrictions in DL.

Handling the DTMF microphone may lead to hit the up / down keys on the top accidently. Seems to be a copy of the MH-48, but less ergonomic.

The radio of course has a sunny side, too. Sensitivity is very good, frequency range as stated and it came with a separation kit, DTMF mic and a USB cable. Software is free, but not perfect. As mentioned above the TH-9800 is very similar to the FT-8900, even the menu and display is nearly the same.

Conclusion:
I expected a radio with a quality level like its original, the FT-8900, but with some more features at lower price. At least at the moment this is not achieved. While some dislikes are minor, the bad modulation (my business card) is not acceptable. Sorry TYT, the original deserves 5 points, the copy just 2.

My first decision was to contact the manufacturer in China. Unfortunately no reply. Then I decided to return the radio to the dealer who granted a 1 month return option at full refund incl. shipping. So that was my short story with the TH-9800. I hope they will improve quality soon since it may have the chance to become a hot seller.
 
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