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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held | Mizuho MX-6Z Help

Reviews Summary for Mizuho MX-6Z
Mizuho MX-6Z Reviews: 1 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: 6m 250mw SSB/CW transceiver (kit, sold by Ace Communications in the U.S.)
Product is in production.
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KU4QD Rating: 4/5 Apr 23, 2002 22:23 Send this review to a friend
Lots of fun, but somewhat limited  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
The MX-6Z was the second generation six meter SSB/CW handheld for Mizuho. (The one watt MX-6S, a/k/a the AEA DX-Handy is the third generation rig.)

The MX-6Z puts out all of 250mW. Yes, when 6m is wide open you can make contacts, and even work some DX. The difference between one watt (the later rig) and a quarter watt really isn't all that much, so the lower power shouldn't dissuade you from this rig if the price is right.

The MX-6Z was an improvement over the earlier MX-6, but it still was incredibly spartan, even compared to the MX-6S. This rig had no S/RF meter, no RIT, no attenuator, and no charging circuit. Otherwise, performance and operation are similar to the later model.

The receiver is very hot and has a low noise floor. The receive audio is pleasant, and can be appreciated better through a larger, external speaker. Transmitted audio quality is OK. With the optional speaker/mic. I've been told it has a "big rig sound", which was a very pleasant surprise.

The MX-6Z was really designed as an SSB handheld. CW seems to be an afterthought. You have to manually switch between transmit and receive and there is no sidetone. Fortunately, the PTT key latches, making CW quite doable. Oh, and yes, there is CW on six, and I highly recommend it if you want to work DX at this low power level.

Accessories for the rig included the M-4 speaker mic. and the PL-6 5 watt linear amplifier. Accessories for the later (and more common) MX-xxS series handhelds will not work with the MX-6Z.

The radio runs on either a single 9V battery or six AAA batteries. Operating voltage is critical and really must remain over 8.4V, so rechargable batteries are really not an option with this rig. The good news is that the battery (or batteries) last a very long time. The rig only draws 40mA on receive, and a whole 180mA when transmitting.

The MX-6Z is the same size as all the other Mizuho HTs: 1"(D) x 2 5/8"(W) x 5 5/8"(H), and weighs in at just over a pound, making it an ideal lightweight travel companion. The telescopic antenna works reasonably well on six but a bigger antenna is certainly better.

The rig is VXO controlled with two crystal slots, each crystal providing 50kHz of bandwidth, so you are pretty much limited to 100kHz. Optional crystals are still available directly from Mizuho on a special order basis. Expect to spend about US$23 per crystal to add/change band segments. Don't even think about domestic crystals: I don't know what Mizuho does, but US made crystals almost never give the full 50kHz of bandwidth, and often give much, much less.

I have two other quarter watt Mizuho handhelds (the MX-2 for 2m and the MX-10Z for 6m). I've had, by far, the most success with the MX-6Z. Six meters really is the magic band, and when it's open QRPp is very doable.

Within its limitations this rig performs quite well. There isn't much difference in resale price between the more common and newer MX-6S and the MX-6Z, so the newer rig is probably a better choice for most people. OTOH, if you, like me, are fortunate enough to find one of these rigs really inexpensively, by all means, go for it!

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