- 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: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Kenwood TS-480HX Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-480HX
Kenwood TS-480HX Reviews: 128 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $1499.95
Description: All mode AM/FM/SSB/CW, HF/VHF (six meters), 200 watts, detachable face, 13.8 VDC, DSP.
Product is in production.
More info:
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the Kenwood TS-480HX.

<— Page 6 of 13 —>

W2OZ Rating: 4/5 Aug 12, 2010 08:11 Send this review to a friend
Great mobile SSB  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
bought this 2 yrs ago to avoid mobile amplifiers, have made DX an d rag chew contacts/qaso's all over the world with incredible reports uing Little Tarheel HP and LDG TW1 for manual but eyes front tune up. 5 watt incremental power adjustment no guessing, PF key for quick low power tune ups, entire menu supported via VGS1 unlike other brands, easy eyes front operation. Some improvements would make this a perfect radio, but I am buying a second one for backup and home aqth. Constructive criticism; 1 PF key only supports one Preset Function at a time , a simple softwire improvement would add both 'Tap' and 'Hold' key pressing for 2 functions, why? in receive you set to #62 'S Meter' in transmitt you have toreset to #67 'Low Power Tune Up'. The optional MC47 microphone is NLA from Kenwood. 2 The front panel RJ connection systems wobbles and drops the rig off line unexpedly, have replaced the cable twice with Kenwood part, this is a frustrating problem, needs addressing. 3 Mike plugs into rig base, Front Panel plugs into rig base, both cables need to go to the trunk for remote operation, headset plugs into FP, why can't the mike? Would gadly pay for these improvements.
N8FZ Rating: 5/5 Jul 16, 2010 13:01 Send this review to a friend
Great rig for restricted subdivisions  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
When it became time to buy a new HF rig, I did a lot of online research. I needed something affordable that would give me a little extra punch to my restricted antenna issues. I could not afford both a new rig and an amp so I settled on the 480HX. I have NOT been dissappointed! The rig is simple to use and the display is easy on the eyes(the reason I gave up on my FT-450 btw). I understand 200 watts compared to 100 makes little diffrence in signal or db, however in my semi- restricted subdivision the extra 100w was already enough to bust a couple of mild pile-ups. which I could

I use this rig only as a base so the detached head took a little getting use to, but turned out better than I expected.

For my needs this rig was a perfect choice!
KB4OIF Rating: 5/5 Jul 15, 2010 04:11 Send this review to a friend
Great HF rig  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Purchased the 480HX from a friend I have know from my 11 meter days here in Florida "many" years ago. It had maybe 15 hours of usage before I got it. He was getting out of HF for health reasons. It replaced a very durable TS 440-S that I still have. Bar none, it is the best rig I have had. Once you read the manuel and explore the menus, it's off to the races so to speak. The 200 watt capability is nice. Makes a difference is a lot of QSO's. It's nice to have a rig with the detachable head. Mine is at eye level on my shelf. I am using it with a MFJ 993B tuner and a Carolina Windom for 6 thru 80 meters. Heil GM-5 mike. I have yet to hear a bad audio report. Most say classic Kenwood audio that is enhanced by the Heil mike. Would buy another, but the betterhalf would not be happy.
KE5KDT Rating: 5/5 Jul 14, 2010 18:12 Send this review to a friend
Excellent radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've got a 480SAT and 480HX. When I first got back into ham radio about 6 years ago I got a TS-480HX and the menus drove me crazy. I ended up selling it, big mistake. After trying 15 different radios I got a 480SAT and shortly thereafter another HX. The HX was dead so I had Cal at fix it. He made a couple of comments I think are worth mentioning. Essentially he said the radios were bulletproof, rock solid and seldom give problems. He quickly repaired mine and I put my TS-870 to the side to use the 480HX and am now very comfortable with the rig and menus which now seem fairly simple, especially when compared to a 706. Plenty of flexibilty to shape the received signal to suit your desires. The extra 100 watts has made a noticeable difference on the qso's. This is about as cheaply as you can go for extra power and not buy am amp. Mix in a little voice processing and a good antenna and you are golden. The HX is destined for mobile and the SAT I'm not sure. The 480 is one of those radios that you just like to use. For mobile it would be hard to beat and it is a solid choice for fixed also. The built-in remote computer control capabilty make it fill another increasingly important need incase you can't put antennas up where you live. Bob
N0PWZ Rating: 5/5 May 25, 2010 21:20 Send this review to a friend
Seamless Quality  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Absolutely no problem at all with this radio. It relieved a TS-480SAT that had been operating 24/7 for a couple of years as an HFLINK Pilot Station transceiver. The SAT was flawless, and so too is its replacement. The nice thing about these units is that they are very computer (and internet) friendly. The SAT has gone on to life in a portable station, and I've a feeling it will give me years more service. These things really do seem to wear like iron.
W3NRL Rating: 5/5 May 21, 2010 04:04 Send this review to a friend
good back up radio  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I have the ts-570 and now the ts-480hx and they have some of the same function menus and buttons and Multi and shift knob, just about the same radio except for the auto tuner which the ts-480hx doesn't have and the nice 200+ watts the ts-480hx does have and for the price to get 200+ watts can't go wrong. Nice back up radio and good primary radio for the shack and the mobile.
Oh by the way it's my back radio for my FT-2000.
ts-480hx is good radio and i do recommend it.
N3VZ Rating: 4/5 May 20, 2010 15:27 Send this review to a friend
Nice radio, but I like my Icom IC-703 a lot better  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This radio works well for its intended purpose.

It was a toss up between this and the Icom IC-703.

There was absolutely nothing wrong with the Kenwood, but I prefer ICOM radios.

K4SPS Rating: 5/5 Apr 29, 2010 07:55 Send this review to a friend
The Best Radio In My Shack  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The previous reviews are what finalized my decision to buy this rig. It is easy to run, powerful on transmit and a pleasure to operate, all the way around. I love the VSG-1 voice option and recommend it as well.

Paired with a 'new' Turner +3 mic, it has been a stellar performer. It is a marvel for the price I paid to Gigaparts - $999 delivered to my door.

The distant radio world is just a Yagi swing away. Talk every day to Europe on 20 meters, 'barefoot.'

Radio transceivers have come a long way since my original Drake TR7. This radio represents the very best in the evolution of small, powerful and intelligent amateur radios.

Like was said before: "Buy one - you won't regret it!"

Thanks Kenwood. K4SPS (soon to be N3VZ)
W5DMT Rating: 5/5 Apr 27, 2010 19:54 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio - Great Price  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
When I was looking at options for a mobile HF installation, I looked at quite a few rigs. I considered the IC-7000, the FT-897 and even potentially using a FT-450.

I decided to go with the 480HX for a couple of reasons. Most importantly, was the extra 100 Watts while mobile. I know it only means an extra S-Unit or so, but that can be the difference between making it, and not.

I have it mounted in a Havis console in my Chevy Tahoe, with a Little Tarheel II antenna mounted on the hatch. The only complaint, is that it doesn't fit underneath the back bench where all of the other (4) radios are mounted along with the power harness. However, it does fit right behind the back seat nicely, with the cables running down into the power harness and the multi-coupler/audio amp that drives the shared speaker up front.

I've worked pretty much whatever I've heard, and I hear quite a bit while rolling down the road. I don't think you'll be disappointed.
G0VQW Rating: 3/5 Apr 10, 2010 14:37 Send this review to a friend
slightly better than ok  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I have used the ts480hx for the last 8 months exlusivly on CW (4 to 15 qso's every day)
The DSP for CW is no good.Makes the sigs sound very watery.I don't even bother to use it.However when listening to the odd ssb signal the rx dsp does have some uses.The side tone is too soft.I have other rigs to compare it with.I think Kenwood need to look at the soft sidetone.There is no way of adjusting this.You can alter the volume and pitch but not the softness or hardness of the sidetone!The rig has a slightly noisier RX when compared to a K2 and Omni6.The rig also has 2 cooling fans.Even running 30 watts CW will have these fans whirring noisily after about 30 seconds into your over!
I have fitted a 270hz xtal filter.For serious CW operation you will need to fit a CW filter.I have read somewhere that the 500hz filter is the better option.Without one you get serious agc pumping so bad infact that you won't be able to hear weaker sigs!
The QSK is good however,but unfortunately they have used a small mechanical reed type relay and it feels like your punishing the rig to run at full break in!I have not compared this rig with others in it's field like the IC706 or IC7000 etc but feel it is a compromise.
It would be good if the big manufactures would built a rig which was purpose designed for CW operation only.Look how Elecraft built it's name on the K1 and K2!(and yes I do have a k1 and k2)Do I have anything good to say about it?
You get 200watts out!In my case 190watts infact,but I tend to run it at 80 watts most of the time.It's also a very convenient rig to use,being small.But so many cables.You have 2 heavy power leads.And two flying coaxial connectors.
If your a keen CW op you may want to think again!But for me the biggest issue is the sidetone!
The rig however is very stable,even from a cold start and reports always complimentary.
<— Page 6 of 13 —>

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