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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur (inc. HF+6M+VHF models) | Kenwood TS-520S Help


Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-520S
Kenwood TS-520S Reviews: 101 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $ts520s
Description: Kenwood TS 520
Product is not in production.
More info: http://ts-520s
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You can write your own review of the Kenwood TS-520S.

Page 1 of 11 —>

N8TI Rating: 5/5 Jan 11, 2014 14:57 Send this review to a friend
Great Rig  Time owned: more than 12 months
My primary rig is an FT-1000D that I bought new almost 20 years ago. The only problem with the FT-1000D is that you don't have to do much to operate it except turn it on and push a button or two. Perhaps that is why when I get on 80 meters at night to CW rag chew with my straight key, I always use the TS-520S. It is easy to operate, but still lets you feel you are doing something other than hitting the on switch.

I use the TS-520S for CW and because I do not have the CW filter, but instead use an old Radio Shack outboard DSP audio filter. It works great. The receive on the radio is very good. I answer QRP calls all the time. The radio puts out a solid 120 watts when I want it to. The radio is heavy and well built. It takes a few minutes to settle down for transmitting on frequency like any tube radio, but that is no problem really. Actually, it's sort of fun.

If I am trying to dig out DX, of course I will use the FT-1000D. But, just want to shoot the breeze on 80 or 40 meters, then the TS-520S is my "go to" rig. I have no doubt, however, that the TS-520S could do very well as a DX rig if called upon. Best purchase I ever made.
 
KH7QT Rating: 5/5 Dec 9, 2013 07:54 Send this review to a friend
Déjà Vu ~ A TS-520s in the Shack Again  Time owned: more than 12 months
I'm back in the saddle again with the nostalgic TS-520s. It's been a while since I had this many knobs to turn, but it's great.

My first 'real' rig was the FT-101E, but somehow I always liked the looks of the 520 better. So I traded the Yaesu for a Kenwood about 20 years ago. But like most hams, the newer digital rigs caught my eye and I sold the Kenwood. I couldn't be happier to have found another one.

It's difficult to describe, the but receive audio just sounds better to my ears. There's also a greater sense of the 'miracle' of radio with this rig, that has somehow been lost with the expensive modern rigs that do everything but pour your coffee in the morning. The advancements of technology have not made the hobby any more fun...at least for me.

A real meter, quality feeling switches and buttons, and that beautiful analog tuning dial all illustrate an era of high end craftsmanship. While today's rigs value excessive features, the old Kenwoods embraced quality, simplicity, and serviceability.

In our 'plug and play' world, its nice to step back to a simpler era of radio that is a bit more deliberate.

Nostalgic? Sure. But I'm a bit of a minimalist, and it doesn't take an expensive rig to make this hobby fun. Slow down a little. Hit the Heater Switch on the 520 and 'wait for it'.

 
W8KMA Rating: 5/5 Apr 19, 2013 07:43 Send this review to a friend
Great Old Rig  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had mine for years.. What smooth sounding receiver!! Makes the signals come alive!! Doesn't have all the bands but who cares!! It's still worth a 5 in my book and it will still be around after I'm gone!! It's just like an old 70's car. The new ones just don't sound the same!! If you want a blast from the past and still be able to hold your own, get one!! They are cheap and worth the price of admission to the bands!!
 
IT9JCB Rating: 3/5 Feb 21, 2013 19:08 Send this review to a friend
The old Sound  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The TS-520S was my dream's rig when I was very young, in the 70's, when it was just a dream because of my limited budget.
Now I found a good one from Germany on eBay and I got it. It arrived in perfect conditions with its own MC-50 mic (another kenwood classic), placed it side by side to my FT-2000 and start a comparison on a noisy 40m band: guys...time passses, technology evolves, we can say that the old ones sound better for sure and criticiate DSP artefacts, but the goo FT-2000 was receiving much better for sure. The 520 has the sound of its good crystal filter, it sounds hard and noisier, but it goes on.

73s
IT)JCB


 
W7MBR Rating: 5/5 Dec 29, 2012 00:31 Send this review to a friend
KENWOOD AT IT'S BEST  Time owned: more than 12 months
I collect Kenwood hybrids because of their extreme reliability and performance. They are also great looking radios that should be rated a solid "5". With a flat antenna system the TS-520S requires little re-tuning when moving around on CW or SSB. When changing bands it can be re-tuned in a matter of a few seconds so no problem here either. Many units from the early 1970's still have their original finals too. For around $200 for a good used one it's the best bang for your buck in a vintage radio.
 
SM5SRR Rating: 4/5 Oct 20, 2011 00:42 Send this review to a friend
Good product!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Its a Kenwood i.e. built like a tank!
Positives: Good audio, quite sensitive, real VFO and you can repair it yourself. Negative: Yep, it's old with tubes in the final which means you have to re-tune when you change frequency every time.
Still, a good radio and quite cheap on the second hand market.
 
KB4JKL Rating: 5/5 Jul 27, 2011 08:13 Send this review to a friend
A Great Radio!  Time owned: more than 12 months
What a great Radio! I have three Kenwood Hybrids, two TS-520's and a TS-530. The 520 is a real performer! It sounds great and also puts out a heck of a great signal. It takes a little work to get it tuned but the work is worth the results. The receive audio is also really great. You can still get these rigs on the used markets at hamfests from $150 to $250 bucks. Well worth the money from a reliable radio. I have a TS-2000 and I somehow still seem to gravitate to these gems and enjoy using them! You won't be sorry if you get one!
 
VK3LBT Rating: 5/5 Jul 19, 2011 04:20 Send this review to a friend
Great performer.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This transceiver is in my opinion the benchmark for the hybrids of the time. I have owned 3 over the years and have sold them on to fund newer units. I have just purchased another that has been refurbished and this will be a keeper.
One stand out area of this radio is the receiver and audio which are comparable with most current tcxrs.
With proper tune up and regular maintenance the radio will last a life time.

For those of us who want to restore and repair a 520s, K4EAA website is invaluable for Kenwood hybrids and a great source for replacement parts.

I operate an Orion 2, FT847, Ten Tec 580 Delta, IC718 and yet the 520s looks,feels and performs like a radio should ( must be the older ham in me, its big, grey, and you can actually turn the knobs without having to press them with a pencil this to me is a radio !).
I would suggest to anyone purchasing one of these classics change the HV caps (120uf 500wvdc )and the 1N60 with Schottky 1N6263 which will improve the receiver.
These are a classic unit and with TLC will give many more years of reliable service and enjoyment.

Cheers
Barry VK3LBT
 
VK4FNRS Rating: 5/5 May 18, 2011 02:29 Send this review to a friend
SIMPLE ROBUST SET  Time owned: more than 12 months
I first saw this set in 1978 when my old friend Ron (SK) brought it new.
A couple of years ago my son tired of the CB idots asked about ham radio.
I contacted RON'S daughter and finding she still had the equipment , purchased it .

I have never regretted buying the set, and although I have access to my sonICOM 716,I rarely use it.

The kenwood is the KING in the shack. for it' is forgiving of antenna mismatch, and ham(no pun ) fisted operators yet still give such great performance.

If you are after a top set these are right up on the TOP SHELF.
 
VK6HZ Rating: 5/5 Jan 8, 2011 06:20 Send this review to a friend
Solid Performer  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Back in 1984 when I was first licensed, a friend lent me his 520S. Once I bought my first radio, I gave it back...I should have kept it!

Recently I had the chance to purchase a beat up 520s with external VFO, 2m and 6m transverters for $300. I grabbed it! Even thought the radio and accessories are a bit rough, she still performed the way I remembered.

I have added a SP-520 and I already owned an AT-200, so I nearly have the complete set.

The RX audio is lovely to listen to. I have not heard anything better, and I have many radios in the last 25 years!

I plan to restore the radio over the coming months and make her look new again. I have had many QSO's on the 520s, running bare foot and currently use it as a dedicated 10M radio.

It doesnt have all the bells and whistles that my FT-2000 has, but it is a pure joy to use!
 
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