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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Ten-Tec Omni VI (Opt. 3) Help

Reviews Summary for Ten-Tec Omni VI (Opt. 3)
Ten-Tec Omni VI (Opt. 3) Reviews: 19 Average rating: 4.6/5 MSRP: $2585.00
Description: Factory upgrade of the Omni VI to VI+
Product is in production.
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N3JBH Rating: 5/5 Sep 25, 2008 08:56 Send this review to a friend
Best i had so far.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
After using 2 Jupiter’s an Icom 746 many yaesu’s etc, I never has a radio that pulled in the weak ones like this Omni VI Opt 3 … I do not hear all the birdies like some have stated, The audio on SSB is tight but then so is the filtering, But then that what I wanted.
The processor works great well heck every thing works great.

I had my fling with the fancy DSP stuff and found that real filters worked best for me.
The notch filters is really deep and best I ever seen, And the stupid noise blanker on the jupe was a joke. Man they sure made a great one on the Omni VI.

I am afraid it will be a cold day in h#ll before I loose this radio,
W8GP Rating: 4/5 May 10, 2008 10:24 Send this review to a friend
Over rated, over priced, featureless radio  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I kind of regret having to write this review because I had high hopes for this radio(perhaps that's the problem, my hopes were too high).And let me qualify this review by saying it is aimed at SSB performance, the CW performance with a 500hz filter was more than adequate for me. I am a casual DXer and contester on the low bands and I was looking for something that would outperform my older radios,a Yaesu FT-107 and Icom IC-735,but the performance I expected just wasn't there. During extensive A-B testing, the receiver was no better than the older rigs during normal (non-contest) conditions, and at no time could I hear a signal on one rig that was not audible on the others.A serious problem is the muddy sounding audio which makes it very hard to pull weak signals out from the noise, the '735 was much better in this regard.A call to Ten-tec revealed that this is the nature of the beast and than if I wanted good SSB audio, then I should buy a Paragon.I installed the Inrad audio mod but the difference was very slight. Also, the background noise was very high and although it probably doesn't hurt performance on the low bands, it was rather fatiguing to listen to after several hours. The receiver is full of birdies and one at 3791 was especially annoying.Again Ten-tec said there was nothing that could be done,and I didn't want to take the the time to shield everything myself, as was suggested on several web sites.At times I could hear what sounded like phantom splatter, but when I tuned up and down the band, I could not find the signal that might be causing it. The filter skirts were pretty good, but the optional 1.8khz first IF and 2.1khz second IF filters were not as effective as I hoped.
As for contesting, I used it during the CQWW phone and CW tests and it was OK but not exceptional. Realistically, the CW performance was probably better than the '107 and '735 but SSB was only mediocre, again due to the poor audio quality.It was just too tiresome to listen to for an entire contest weekend and this masked any benefit of having better ultimate dynamics.

Bottom line, I was disappointed in the rig and sold it after 7 months. I replaced it with a Yaesu FT-950 and although my experience with the new radio is still limited, I don't miss the Omni at all.
Simple to operate
Convenient band changes and frequency control
Tight filter skirts
Excellent transmit audio
Switchable receive-only antenna
DSP notch filter very nice
High background noise
DSP noise reduction marginal
VOX unusable with non-Ten
-tec mike( not enough mike amplifier gain to avoid drop-outs)
Poor isolation of receive antenna
W2DWL Rating: 5/5 Apr 10, 2008 15:27 Send this review to a friend
Great Receive  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Well I have heard a lot about this radio and thought I give it a try, and to my surprise it is the best radio I have ever had the pleasure to use. The receive is by far the best and has no equal. I get excellent audio reports just using the 705 desk mic. I compared it to my Pro, and TS-2000 and I will tell you that I no longer own the Pro nor the TS-2000.
VA3OL Rating: 5/5 Feb 8, 2008 08:13 Send this review to a friend
great rig  Time owned: months
I have had my Omni VI/opt3 for about 2 years. I also have a K2 and I consider them very close in performance. But what I like about the OMNI VI/opt3 is it's simplicity. Change bands; one touch. Drop down a 100 khz; one touch. DSP; one touch [and the DSP works very well on noise reduction].
During the past 5 years I have had two Yaesu rigs and several others but they have complicated menus that are not intuitive and force you to constantly search through the menus for commonly adjusted items. [and I don't think that they come close to the OMNI VI/opt3 performance]
If you want a simple rig (from the user interface standpoint] and one with performance that is excellent this is the rig for you.
A local older ham ordered a Jupiter.but couldn't navigate the multi menus. It frustrated him and he sold it .... at a great loss. I am like him. give me a rig that does it all but with easy menus and a no brainer interface. Most of us don't have the time to learn all of the menus; especially if we are casual users so the OMNI goes a long way to make hamming easy and enjoyable.
If I had a complaint about the OMNI VI/op3 it is the desk size of the unit. But then I am trying to downsize and my K2 takes up about 20% of the desk space that the OMNI does.
FORMER_K0PD Rating: 5/5 Apr 11, 2007 18:11 Send this review to a friend
Best HF i've owned so far.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I just recently bought a very nice Omni VI opt3 and must say that so far it has the best reciever i've used and i've gone through many different rig's. I just now ordered a Orion 1(used) with all the latest upgrades and was promised it will be even better than the OmniVI.If it is that much better all i can say is i'll believe it once i use it. Right now when you can find them for sale and you want a great reciever and if CW is your bag then i say try out a Omni VI as you'll not be disappointed. as for me i'm a ssb primary operator and all i can say is my Omni VI with the opt3 upgrade is a pleasure to use.
W5GA Rating: 5/5 Aug 23, 2006 12:29 Send this review to a friend
Best bargain out there!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought one of these used as an upgrade from an IC-761, and WHAT an upgrade. This is easily the best receiver I've ever used, beating the one in an IC-781 quite handily (my previous #1 receiver). It hears things in a copiable fashion that I wouldn't even have know were there with the 761. The DSP performance appears to be the key to this, but I won't say for sure until I run it through the CQWW this fall and see how it performs on a really busy band.

Things I like so far:
Top notch receiver
easy to operate with a shallow learning curve
a noise blanker that actually does something
TenTec QSK as others have noted

Things I don't like so far:
small push buttons for most functions. I have big fingers! If this ends up being my biggest compaint, I'll be very happy!

These are an incredible bargain on the used market considering the performance you get compared to other radios out there.

KJ4XX Rating: 0/5 Jul 22, 2006 00:17 Send this review to a friend
crapy  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought this radio from a friend for one reason, he was old and I wanted one of his radio's. He bought this Omni VI new and had sent it back to Ten-Tec for the same problem twice. The clock and other functions never worked right and it would never read the right frequency. On one area in 75 meters it might only be off 170 KHz and on 20 Meters it could be 1,800 KHz off. The rep at hamfest says they just use a different kind of frequency control than the japanese and thats to be expected. So after 5 emails they say mine is broken and they can fix it, for more money!! Why didn't they fix it the first two times? Also, I always wondered why they sold a $2,400 radio with a $10 CB meter?.. The feel of the knobs are cheap also..again, look at what you get for that kind of money, side by side, quality for quality. Then I had two friends by the first Orion...transmit and receive frequency was off, they both returned them for good. For another $100 worth of quality parts (off their profit) they could have had a top notch radio. A larger more professional meter would have really helped. A more stable and accurate frequency readout would have really helped, and fixing the radio the first time it was sent would have realy, realy helped. I think if they put out a better product American hams would have bought so many Ten-Tecs they wouldn't be able to keep them on the shelves. Until then, please stay away from used Omni VI unless you get free shipping to Tennessee, and also look at the other fine on frequency radio's before you buy an Orion. And me? I have owned over 24 HF rigs and have test twice that, compared side by side. I've been a ham for 22 years and do know what I'm talking about...
W3ULS Rating: 4/5 Dec 31, 2003 21:08 Send this review to a friend
A good one for CW  Time owned: months
N1EU's review previous to this sums up the OMNI VI (Opt. 3) better than I can.

I call attention to my review of the SCAF-1 filter also posted today. IMHO, the SCAF-1 gives the venerable OMNI VI new legs for CW. The filtering flexibility of the SCAF-1, combined with the well-designed front-end of the OMNI VI, make for a potent combination that may be equalled or exceeded by the newest ICOMs or what have you, but not by much.

If you have an older rig that was well-designed from the get-go--like an ICOM IC-765 or any of the older Ten-Tecs, give the SCAF-1 a try. The single-knob filtering of the SCAF-1--you can narrow the audio bandpass down to about 450 Hz--makes operating CW a breeze with the OMNI's filters set at 1.8 kHz. If needed, of course, you can punch in the narrower OMNI filters to wipe out close-by strong signals. Makes you think you've got a new rig!

Thank you Idiom Press!
W3JJH Rating: 5/5 Sep 5, 2003 23:29 Send this review to a friend
Excellent!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I stopped by the Ten Tec factory store to play with one of the new Orions in their demo station. While chatting with the Ten Tec folks, I found out that they has a half dozen Omni VIs (Opt. 3) in stock. When I left they had five.

I put the rig on the air as soon as I got back to Maryland. I was very impressed with the excellent ergonomics. The controls are logicly laid out and work well.

Recently, I took my Omni VI over to a friend's shack. On 40-m CW it was possible to work stations that could not be heard on an FT-1000D, an FT-1000 Mk V, an IC-756 PRO, a TR-7, a TS-950SDX, or a 75S-3. The receiver performance is amazing; its right up there with the Orion and the K2.

At around $ 1750, this radio probably offers the most bang for the buck of anything presently on the market.
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