- Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) Community

Call Search

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Friends Remembered
Survey Question

DX Cluster Spots

Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement

Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | KDK FM-2033 Help

Reviews Summary for KDK FM-2033
KDK FM-2033 Reviews: 4 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $ 349.95
Description: 11 memory channels + vfo operation, built-in tone encoder, switchable 25 or 5 watt operation, RIT, Scan Speed button, Mem Write button, repeater or simplex operation, can also operate non-standard splits.
Product is not in production.
More info: http://
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the KDK FM-2033.

K3HVG Rating: 4/5 May 20, 2008 08:27 Send this review to a friend
Still ticking!!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
After some 15-20 years, this radio still works fine. Originally used in our CAP comms truck, and now non-compliant, its going on the shelf as a back-up simplex rig. Ony problem is, of course, the egregiously laborious method to change the PL tones.
KU4QD Rating: 4/5 Apr 23, 2002 10:00 Send this review to a friend
Reliable, durable rig with a couple of quirks  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had three FM-2033s over the years, as well as the FM-4033 (222 MHz version) and the FM-7033 (70cm version). The rigs were the latest and greatest when I first became a ham in 1984. I just recently sold my last one due to financial difficulties.

KDK did a very good job with the FM-2033 in a number of important ways. It was ruggedly built and very, very reliable, even after many years in a mobile environment. It is not prone to intermod despite the extended frequency coverage available. Transmit and receive audio are excellent. It had 11 memories, and offset could be programmed for each memory unlike some earlier models. The memories were broken into two banks, and you can scan either or both. You could also set up an odd split repeater between an "A" and a "B" memory.

The one flaw with this radio didn't seem too serious in the mid '80s when most repeaters were carrier access, but it's an important one today. As was common at the time, the optional PL (CTCSS) encode board allowed for a single frequency. That frequency was set with a pot, not with dipswitches. The way the board mounted in the rig the pot was face down when the board was installed, so there was no way to adjust the PL frequency with the radio powered, and no way to tell what frequency the board was set to when removed unless you could power it externally and measure the tone frequency with a separate counter. The counters in most ham shacks won't measure subaudible tones, will they? So... changing the tone is a pain at best and impossible at worst.

If the repeaters you use are all carrier access, or you know the tone is set to something useful to you, the KDK FM-2033 is a very good rig which you can pick up very cheaply indeed on the used market. For those who really need PL, or at least the ability to change the PL tone frequency, look instead for the model that replaced this one: the FM-240.
RADIOWEENIE Rating: 5/5 Apr 13, 2002 14:10 Send this review to a friend
2m radio purchased 1983. 11 memories, duplex+simplex operation.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I got the KDK-2033 for my first ham radio as a Technician in 1983. It is an excellent receiver. It has been reliable as a brick for 19+ years and is as good as any radio i have ever owned. It has acquired quite a lot of sentimental value since then-- and for this reason i do not want to mount it as a mobile rig. It is truly a shame that KDK is no longer making radios for the amateur market. The quality is not only top-notch by today's standards, but it is a pleasure to operate. No microprocessor "mumbo-jumbo" here!!
NT9E Rating: 5/5 Feb 9, 2002 15:48 Send this review to a friend
Great workhorse!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought mine new in 1985 as a closeout item for $299.95. I used it many years mobile and now use it mainly for my packet cluster radio or as a spare mobile rig. The original mic cord will failed after a few years and one of the touch-tone pad transistors failed but I've had it in my shack for almost 17 years. Very stable radio.

If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions about Reviews, please email your Reviews Manager.