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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Kenwood TS-590SG Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-590SG
Kenwood TS-590SG Reviews: 77 Average rating: 4.9/5 MSRP: $1759.00
Description: HF/50MHz TRANSCEIIVER
Product is in production.
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N6MWA Rating: 5/5 Dec 21, 2017 19:49 Send this review to a friend
Nice Radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just picked up a TS-590 SG. Very pleased with the performance of this rig. Very high quality fit and finish. The controls are nicely finished with a machined aluminum VFO knob. The case was powder coated rather than painted for a nice quality finish. The controls are laid out ergonomically and the most important functions are controlled by means of knobs and buttons rather than menu
driven. In use I found the receiver to have a pleasant sound.

A few things I wish it had: APF, dedicated ptt and alc connections rather than having to use the remote DIN connector. In summary- I am very pleased with this radio.
KM6AAI Rating: 5/5 Dec 2, 2017 15:51 Send this review to a friend
Easy to use  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
It seems that new (or less experienced hams) seeking their first mid-priced transceiver are drawn to the Icom 7300 or the Kenwood 590SG. I don't think there is a wrong choice... it all depends on what you are looking for in a radio... or perhaps how much you are willing to climb the learning curve.

I can't speak for the 7300 as all I've done is to have read the manual when trying to make my decision. If you are buying your first HF rig like I was, you might not want to go through the leaning curve before making your first QSO and that is one of the advantages of the 590... a total newbie can take the 590 out of the box, plug it in, push the power button, turn the knob to any frequency, and be on the air. Maybe you can do that with the 7300 but from reading the manual it didn't look like it.

I've only had this for seven months and have nothing I can compare it to. However, everyone says my signal is great and I find the audio on this radio to be excellent... the engineers really made it easy to filter out a lot of the noise floor. One thing for sure is that this radio is slam-dunk easy to use. (I'm running it barefoot to an end-fed antenna LNR Precision QUAD.)

If you are into touch-screens and other digital features, you probably want to go with the 7300, but I find that the older-tech 590SG to work well for its mission... good, solid, analog transmitting and receiving without needing a Ph.D in quantum physics to operate it!
N5LXI Rating: 5/5 Nov 3, 2017 22:40 Send this review to a friend
Great  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I love my Elecraft K3, but wanted a rig that was easy to use with digital modes. This rig does that perfectly with one USB cable and free software. I'm using FT8. I've also made quite a few SSB contacts with it and have been very happy and the receiver. I got the Anniversary model, which has a deep blue metal-flake front, some accessories and a Vibrocube. It's a heavy, solid radio and the user interface is done well. It's a pleasure to operate. joel / N5LXI
KG4FET Rating: 4/5 Sep 17, 2017 17:29 Send this review to a friend
Does a Good Job  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
It takes a a while to learn the rig, get all the settings right ect...This is the highest end rig I have ever owned BTW.

Typical of Kenwood the TX audio is great ONCE you get it set. The USER setting in MENU 36 can be adjusted through Kenwoods free CAT (590G) software and saved in the radio. I won't give my settings because EVERYONE's voice is different. I use 3 different mics (TenTen Dynamic, Kenwood HM43, and a Heil HC 5 in a after market head set) and they are all pretty close with the edge going to the hand mic and the TT I use 90% of the time.

The receiver could be the best of any rig, but 2 both TenTec's, I have ever owned and I have owned/used a bunch. As far as actual RX the edge goes to the 590SG over the TenTec Jupiter, but, and this is a biggie for me as an NCS on a couple HF Nets, The receiver in the Jupiter is quieter. I just can't get the 590's as quiet as the JUP without signal loss. NR1 above 4 adds a watery sound to RX that I just don't like NR2 is worse. Beat cancel (BC1/2) Notch, Auto Notch, and the NB 1/2 are very effective in fighting noise. The 590 does not have an IF Shift BUT it does have an A/B DSP filter. I set one a little tight (400/2400) and the other at my normal listening levels (300/2800) lo/high cut. RX tone can also be tailored in MENU 36 (adding highs, lows, flat).

USB connection allowing BOTH CAT and Sound Card Digital operation at the same time is great. CAT is easy to set up, SC Digital takes some playing with trough the USB. All of these things take some playing with.

A brief word on the misuse of the term panadapter regarding the 590SG. The 590SG's I.F. CANNOT BE TAPPED. Buying a 160.00 receiver isn't needed when a 24.00 will do. I bought the RTL-SDR single hook up bundle that included the antennas and a mag mount. Cut the coax about 2 inches from the Mag and soldered an RCA male plug for the DRV port on the 590 and a female RCA on the pigtail Nothing lost in that case. the Dongle works stand alone and on the 590 and NO 15 or 20 "special" adapter needed. Great thing with the cheap dongle is that when used with HDSDR and not slaved to the radio via CAT the dongle makes a great second receiver.

Overall the 590SG is excellent but is still noisier then the Ten/Tec rigs I have used and currently have. There is a steep learning curve that cannot be figured out sitting at the radio for a few minutes much less a few days. Want to ask me a question emails good on QRZ
73 de KG4FET
W0DKM Rating: 5/5 Sep 17, 2017 08:28 Send this review to a friend
Pleased as Punch  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I grabbed a TS590SG 70th anniversary. I have or had a bunch of Kenwood's. Everything works as it should.
Is it better or worse then other rigs? To each his own on that. It has a great receiver and the noise reduction is very good.
It looks very close to the standard 590. Maybe a shade darker. There is metal flake in the bezel.
It comes with extras, And if its from HRO like mine. They threw in a Heil Mike and cable, Cant beat that.
I will have to save it as a collector!

Is worth the extra money over the standard. Well it was for me.

I never complain about rigs or equipment, I if works for what I need, I keep it, If it don't, I Dump it.

I will save this one for my kids to sell!!
VA3AQB Rating: 5/5 Sep 12, 2017 12:10 Send this review to a friend
Great  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have always been a Yaesu guy but after getting the TS590SG used. I'm mostly doing digital and find the TS590SG is the radio I will use all the time for these modes. I feel that the radio can handle what ever you throw at it. RX is great and don't see much or none difference at all to my FTDX3000. I had a FT991 & a Icom 7300 but the TS590SG is a much better work horse. These radios just sat there collecting dust but the 590 is on every time I do digital. For SSB work I do use the FTDX3000.
Next step is to add a pan-adapter to compete with my FTDX3000.
K3EY Rating: 5/5 Jul 26, 2017 11:16 Send this review to a friend
BEST BUY BEST RADIO BEST RECEIVER  Time owned: more than 12 months
Having owned three different TS590SG’s since they came out I feel I am qualified to make a realistic review. I also owned two different IC7300 and many other high-end HF radios. I still own a TS590SG and IC7300. The TS590SG has a receiver that can not be touched at it’s price. You can hear NDB’s below 500Hz with the 590SG where the Icom is deaf. The noise blanker at my QTH is useless on the Icom where the 590SG noise blanker kills any and all noise. I can hear weak stations just about equal with both the Kenwood and Icom except when there is a strong near frequency station, that is where the 590SG excels and the Icom falls apart. You can add a SDRPlay to the 590SG and mimic the 7300 screen, only a much bigger screen. The new SDR 7300 is a marvel and why it sells but Kenwood’s old fashion technology with it’s raw performance outshines the 7300 “starter rig”. You need to up it a few thousand dollars more to really compete with the TS590SG and then dollar for dollar it would only be a “small” return on your money. If a fancy touch screen makes you gaga then go for the 7300, if superb powerful performance in you receiver is important, then the 590SG is a no-brainer. Don’t believe me, that’s ok it’s just my opinion which is worth whatever you believe it is.
WY4J Rating: 5/5 Jul 24, 2017 17:59 Send this review to a friend
No Complaints  Time owned: more than 12 months
I am not the easiest person to please and many a time I will have a very different point of view from the dozens of review pages. This is not one of those times.

I got my ticket when the Collins KWM-2 was the rig everyone dreamed about owning. Now they call it a boat anchor.

Not sure what transceiver some reviewers have been rating but it must not be a Kenwood TS-590SG. This is my second TS-590. I had the TS-590S from the onset and replaced with the SG model so I could have a pan adapter. Paired up with the SDRplay and I could not be happier. I have this model for three years and it's a wonderful CW/JT65/SSB rig. The DSP does its job and the CW filtering works perfect even when narrowed to 50 Hz. There is just enough state of the art for this rig to be up to date but it still has the buttons and feel of an older transceiver. Is a very user friendly piece of equipment. I just cannot find any of these insurmountable problems described by some folks on this web site. This Kenwood TS-590SG is the second best radio I have ever owned with my 36 year old Kenwood TS-830S that I purchased new in 1981 taking the top spot. Hopefully I will be a ham for another 41 years so I can be buried with my 77 year old TS-830 and my 44 year old TS-590SG.

Now, this is only my humble opinion but you need to use and learn all the little things and quirks of a piece of equipment before you can write about it as I have read negative reviews emanating from the reviewer perusal of a picture, specs out of a magazine or others playing with a piece of borrowed equipment for a few minutes. Some will write a review from listening to it while at the ham store or at their buddy's house. While others just cannot be please but thankfully these folks are in the minority.
W8RMV Rating: 5/5 Jul 24, 2017 17:18 Send this review to a friend
Best Value  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Very EZ to use. PF buttons are awesome and configurable. I own the radio & just did not borrow it for a few days. Like a recent reviewer, I found the 590 much quieter than the Icom IC-7300. Background noise on the 7300 is terrible so I sold it. You'll see noise complaints about the 7300 on the FTdx-3000 reviews also. I get great audio reports on phone using an HM-12 Heil mic. It also has a great auto-tuner. Tunes beyond 3:1 & very fast. Lastly, I have a SDR connected to the DRV port & I get great a panadapter using SDR Console SW. Still the best buy out there.-73 Bob
N4UE Rating: 1/5 Jul 24, 2017 16:25 Send this review to a friend
Poor  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I borrowed a friends 590SG, I compared it to my:

Icom 761

In all cases, it was much too noisy. The background noise level got on my nerves very quickly.

BTW, the antenna is a Mosley CL-33 at 95' fed with hardline. Not some longwire.



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