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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Ten-Tec TT526 6m+2m allmode IF DSP Help

Reviews Summary for Ten-Tec TT526 6m+2m allmode IF DSP
Ten-Tec TT526  6m+2m allmode IF DSP Reviews: 29 Average rating: 4.2/5 MSRP: $695.00
Description: 6m and 2m allmode IF DSP Radio
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the Ten-Tec TT526 6m+2m allmode IF DSP.

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K5RIX Rating: 5/5 Nov 14, 2006 09:18 Send this review to a friend
Solid VHF All Mode  Time owned: more than 12 months
I like the way this radio sounds. It is quite pleasant to listen to. In this price range, there is no other. I have not had problems with front-end overload, but then I'm not within close distance to any mega-station. This is probably the very best VHF rig for a CW op. Weak signals, indeed.

It works fine for 2M repeaters (not my main cup of meat) and the adjustable IF filtering sets it apart from my IC706MkII with filters for 500 and 250 Hz. The Icom is nasty to send CW; the Ten Tec is a Ten Tec.

This rig is easy to interface with an amplifier. If you want better performance, it's gonna cost you $$$$.

This is a great rig for semi-serious VHFing. About as good as one can get for the bucks.
K7VO Rating: 5/5 Sep 12, 2005 18:52 Send this review to a friend
Absolutely brilliant. Not perfect but the closest I've found.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
To me the time to really judge a VHF multimode rig is during the rigors of a contest. While I've only had the 6N2 about a month the ARRL September VHF QSO party gave me a chance to give it a real workout. (I had worked one 6m opening and worked some local FM, both repeaters and simplex, before this.)

The receiver is very hot, more so than any other rig I have on either band. Much like it's HF twin, the Argonaut V, I can pull out signals with this rig that I can't with other rigs. The only downside is that the 6N2 is mildy prone to front end overload. A true "big gun" six or seven miles away was able to wipe out a 30kHz swath of either band. This is far better than many rigs I've had but there are others that do hold up a bit better.

Six was wide open Sunday evening and being able to narrow my bandwidth to as little as 950Hz and still have a readable SSB signal was wonderful on a suddenly very crowded band. Signals less than 2kHz apart could be sorted out. The IF DSP filters are every bit as good as on the Argonaut V and are an absolute pleasure.

The rig does have birdies on 6m. One, at 50.118, is S4 and quite loud. It's there with the antenna
disconnected. Others are S1 or less and it isn't a huge flock. I had a Patcomm PC-9000 and that truly had loud birdies everywhere. On 2m I found no loud birdies and perhaps a couple of very minor ones (no S meter movement at all) in the weak signal portion of the band.

Received audio is excellent on this rig and based on the reports I've received both on FM and SSB so is transmitted audio. CW... well... it's a Ten Tec with that lovely full QSK.

FWIW, my rig is early production but has been updated to 1.23 firmware (the latest). I would have bought new but Ten Tec has discontinued these. I think some poor reviews for early versions with the 1.00 firmware (including some here) helped keep sales fairly low. Pity. Ten Tec, clearly got rid of any deficiencies in the firmware.

Overall I am quite pleased with the rig. It isn't perfect but it is very, very good. There is no 4.7 or 4.8 rating so I've rounded up to 5. At $450 or so on the used market this radio is an absolute bargain. With the hot receiver and wonderful filtering this really is a first class rig.
KE6PID Rating: 5/5 Aug 8, 2005 11:50 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
The TenTec "6N2" 526 is a dual band multimode base radio that is quite sophisticated and works very well. The user interface is quite simple, you can use it without really reading the manual, but that would be a mistake as there are a few hidden features you'd miss if you didn't.

This is an all mode 6 and 2 meter radio; mine exhibits superb sensitivity on both bands and all modes. I noticed that some reviewers feel the radio is "deaf as a post" if you have one and this is the case; send it back for repair, something is wrong. I have used mine in all modes under various conditions and it always gets the job done and then some.

Connections on the back are RCA jacks; mic is connected through a 4-pin connector. Mic gain is easy to set on SSB with the ALC indicator and on FM through careful observation on the S/Power out meter. Transmit and receive audio is always clear and crisp. PL encode is included for repeater use. 99 memories are available to store the radio setup.

Unfortunately, the "6N2" 526 has been discontinued. This ought to be a great value on the used market.
KB1GMX Rating: 5/5 Jan 9, 2005 14:57 Send this review to a friend
Very good, 4.8  Time owned: more than 12 months
Purchased May 2002, used in three field days, several field emergency exercises and all VHF contests. FB rig that does what is supposed to and is easy for inexperienced ops to use(no menues).

It's my regular transceiver. I've built five bomebrewed SSB designs so far to try and beat it on 6M and have come close but, not passed it.

It's a robust radio that has stood up to daily use. The DSP works very well.

One problem I have found is its performance degrades severely below 11.0V. Since this is an abnormally low voltage for any PS or auto this is acceptable and not unreasonable. I run the station on solar power 24x7 so I do see low voltages on occasion. A FT847 used here for a while had the same problem and my other 2M multimode (IC245) is also fussy about DC voltage.

The receiver is as claimed, quiet and sensitive. Testing using service tools and on the air has proved this. It's the only RX that is remotely usable here, I have someone 1000ft away that runs 200-1KW on 6M/2M. There are a few birdies on 6M, but I've had a 706IIG here, an 847 and built a flock of homebrews they all do. It's very difficuit to avoid birds on 6. The close in (less than 10khz away) performance is OK. I've not met many other dual conversion (or triple) radios that do better unless the first Filter is switchable. Those that have a switchable first filter cost more. The K2 and one of my homebrews are better at this at the expense of no FM (or 6M) modes. Such is the tradeoffs in RF design.

TX always sounds good, looks good on a scope too. Mic gain is not touchy.

The noise blanker at the highest setting does cause roughness in the RX audio only when set at a "9" as required for S9+ noise. Set for "7" rather than "9" it's unobtrusive.

S-meter is calibrated like HF radios (S9=50uV) rather than the VHF standard of S9=5uv, makes the meter a bit stingy. This is not a reflection on it's sensitivity only how it's meter is calibrated.

I wondered when new if the tuning mech and Multi knobs would hold up over time as they have a lightweight feel. So far they have held up just fine with desk and field use.

The introduction of a mobile mounting bracket was
a nice addition and works well. It's locked into the mount using the tilt stand on the bottom making easy removal simple and quick.

Wish list items:
DMTF mic
Headset VOX would have been nice.
Matching 220 and 432 transverters.
Ship with Argo-V tuning knob (metal with dimple)
(I bought one from TT.)
Indicator for the Attenuator being in use.

I still give it a 4.8. To me a 5 is perfect, and nothing is perfect.

KA1YUW Rating: 5/5 Oct 4, 2003 19:42 Send this review to a friend
great radio update  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
well I have owned this radio for a few months now.
I haved worked 9 states on 2 meters with a 5 elements homebrew yagi up 28 feet. And this is on ssb just running 20 watts. So if I can hear it I can work it. Great Job TenTec
W5FRG Rating: 2/5 Jul 30, 2003 23:45 Send this review to a friend
"deaf as a post"  Time owned: more than 12 months
Whoever it was that wrote that the TenTec 526 was ‘deaf as a post” hit the nail right on the head. This is especially noticable on 2M FM simplex. Using the same outside antenna, my old 1970s Regency HR-2A and my classic Drake TR-22C both hear signals that don’t even register on the new TenTec. And even worse, sometimes I can hear simplex stations on my Yaesu VX-150 using only a rubber ducky inside the house that the 526 can’t hear using the outside antenna. If one’s 2M FM activity consists only of working loud local repeaters, then the 526 will probably do the job. However, if you plan to work simplex stations more than a mile or so away, then the TenTec 526 will likely not be very satisfactory.
KC5LVW Rating: 1/5 Apr 26, 2003 06:16 Send this review to a friend
Don't do it!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I was on the list the day the ad came out in QST, radio arrived one month later....I just have to believe that the engineers that design things for Ten-Tec should not have missed all these...
1. no detent on memory channel changing so you don't know if you're on the edge or in the middle.
2. no external spkr jack
3. IF DSP active all the time
4. ALC setting via green LRD
5. No DTMF capabolity
6, Can't tell if you pushed the "lock" button or not
7. Meter display cosmetics the cheapest
8. Firmware upgrade required because it was sluggish & deaf
9. going mobile? no bracket at all
10. no seperate PL "enc" & "dec". just one choice
Get the picture? The price is the same as the day it arrived on the street (July 15. 2001 for me). For $30 or so, get yourself an ICOM or Ywasu & have fun!
K1FPV Rating: 5/5 Mar 31, 2003 13:34 Send this review to a friend
Great VHF All-Mode Radio!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've owned my Ten-Tec 526 (6N2) now for about a year and a half. I've used it mostly on 6 Meters and ocassionally on 2 Meters. On the day I got the tranceiver, I worked into Europe using my HF longwire and a tuner. I hadn't had time to put a 6 Meter antenna up. Shortly afterwards, I was working the west coast of the US. Not bad for a make-shift antenna that was up only 10' high and only 20 watts PEP.

I've found the receiver to be fairly sensitive, and the DSP IF filters to work well. Reports from stations I work say my transmit audio is excellent. The receiver noise is quite low. The radio has a super front end! My only complaint is 2 "birdies" on 6 Meters. One in the DX portion of the band and the other a bit higher in the band wbut weaker. The stronger birdie is only an S2 on the meter while the other one is somewhat weaker. On 2 Meters, I've made ground wave contacts of over 200 miles using a homebrew log periodic made from a TV antenna. I currently use the same antenna on 6 meters too. If I can hear it, I work it. It is a teriffic rig for the money. Ten-Tec did a super job on this radio!
KG4AUQ Rating: 2/5 Feb 3, 2003 08:46 Send this review to a friend
Really wanted to like it  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I really wanted to like this rig, but in the end I'm sending it back today.

By far the easiest radio to program- the other manufactures could learn a thing or two here.

However, on 2m FM it's deaf as a post. Stations that give me an S-3 on a Yaesu 1500 I couldn't even detect on the 526 using the same antenna (yes the attenuator was turned off).
Audio sounds "harsh" on those stations I could hear. Transmit audio reports were excellent.

No DTMF functionality whatsoever (not mentioned in the lit.) which makes using echolink and IRLP out of the question.

Hate to say it but there are better options out there.
K5JFG Rating: 1/5 Dec 18, 2002 23:13 Send this review to a friend
Not much of a radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I am astounded by some of the high marks this radio is receiving on this site. Makes me think they are not talking about the same Ten-Tec 526 that I own. Mine performs awfully in just about any test I have put it to. It's the worst rig I have ever owned in over 40 years of ham radio. Huge birdies all across 6 and 2 meters, some of them S2 or S3 on the meter. Intermod performance very poor. Some frequencies I can't even use (145.01 being one) if the police are on the air. Huge intermod at 50.118 MHZ, right in the DX window. Sensitivity is very poor compared to other lower cost FM radios. Transmit audio quality substandard. A number of hams have complained of hearing a constant buzzing tone around 800 hz on my audio -- it's in the rig, nothing induced from the outside. My radio has been back to Ten-Tec 3 times. Each time they tell me they can't do a thing about the birdies. Each time they say the radio meets their specs. Had I not bought this radio at a ham fest I would certainly return it to Ten-Tec. Had I paid full price for it, I would really be upset. Anyone want it? The first $200 takes it away. In good conscience I couldn't ask for more.
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