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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Kenwood TS-830S Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-830S
Kenwood TS-830S Reviews: 133 Average rating: 4.9/5 MSRP: $930
Description: 160M-10M SSB/CW transceiver
Product is not in production.
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WM5M Rating: 5/5 Sep 10, 2017 18:40 Send this review to a friend
Amazing.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Gold label, fully fitted with filters. Sold my 940S if that's a clue. Sold my FT 897D {Good radio}, Yaesu Ft-450 {toy}. Kept the Real radio. Sure I recapped it, but worth every penny. All my radios feed through a Timewave DSP but never use it. Why?
K9VA Rating: 5/5 Jun 18, 2017 16:55 Send this review to a friend
Pinnace of an era  Time owned: more than 12 months
Was intrigued by the many excellent reviews of the rig, as I fully agree with them. I was fortunate enough to be part of a club that bought the full 830 line for the club station in the early 80's, and I operated it for two years. It was a joy to operate - clean lines, intuitive, visually appealing. As the infamous country song goes it was "hotter than a $2 pistol, long and lean, every young boy's dream". I am jealous of the ops who have one today.
VK4JK Rating: 5/5 Sep 11, 2016 17:12 Send this review to a friend
EXCELLENT TRANSCEIVER !!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I first began using a Kenwood TS-830M in 1992.I operated that rig for many many years. I now use a TS-830S Gold Label Edition, that is fully kitted.
I doubt that there will ever be a Transceiver better Built, or of Audio quality!
YO3FXF Rating: 5/5 Aug 6, 2016 05:54 Send this review to a friend
Fobulous Transceiver!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I waited years to make sense of this transceiver ( KENWOOD TS830S Gold Label) finally has occupied the place of honor in my shack ... It looks and works fantastic, after so many years ... will never leave your side me as I live ! ... I have many transceivers in the shack , but KENWOOD TS830S is my soul ... I craved more in younger years to have him ... Take care of these transceivers because they are fabulous ! 73 YO3FXF
ZS1ZC Rating: 5/5 Jul 19, 2016 11:40 Send this review to a friend
Demure beauty with real class  Time owned: more than 12 months
For me the TS-830S is the pinnacle of 1980ís hybrid design, they simply donít get better, and this one has style as well as functionality. Not a sexy movie star like the FT-901DM and FT-101ZD, but a demure screen beauty with real class. Somehow Kenwood got the balance exactly right between form and function and produced a lineup thatís both beautiful and well engineered. The 830S lineup is without doubt my favourite rig.

Notable features are the great audio reports I get using the MC-50 microphone and just a touch of audio processing (the processor is really effective). The mechanics are excellent when you compare it with others of the era, the VFO tunes like it's sliding on oil. Receive audio is excellent. It has a lovely rhythm on CW when you set the VOX delay right because the relay isn't too intrusive.

One downside is that the noise blanker, while mostly effective, doesn't compare well to that on the Yaesu FT-101E or the Drake TR-7, but it's not a serious drawback. The narrow CW filter is a little too "ringy" for my ears, but that's a personal preference.

There are enough receive features on this rig to keep quite an advanced DX'er happy, especially when used with the outboard synthesized VFO-230. Other accessories are all excellent.

Do not pass up an opportunity to get one of these, and if you do pick one up it's worth putting in a bit of effort and cash to renew old parts and do a recap. You won't regret it.
KD8EZU Rating: 5/5 May 31, 2016 15:28 Send this review to a friend
Still going strong since my 2009 review  Time owned: more than 12 months
Did a review on April of 2009 ( Page 4 of 13) I have only one of my two 830S's an sold one two years ago. The one I have now has all the filters and the heavy duty 6293 tubes. I either use it with the MC-50 Kenwood microphone that came with it or the Electro-Voice 630 microphone that I had gotten a few years back. I also have an ICOM 756 Pro III with the SM-20 mic and a Kenwood TS440S. I would still say that my favorite out of the three is the 830S. Properly working, these are still just so amazing. Since 2009 I have replaced ( not needed but done anyway ) the two relays that sometime stick ( mine never did ) and they used to be available at Face death rather than sell this rig if you have a working one.It is that good.
WU3D Rating: 5/5 Feb 28, 2016 06:34 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had the Kenwood TS-830s for many many years. This rig is outstanding in every way. Kenwood really knew what they were doing when they concieved and built this rig. Solid well built and well fitted case.The different sizes and shapes of the front panel knobs make it so that you know which knob you are touching without looking. Well placed and just the right size and knob spacing. This is one radio that will NEVER be sold/traded for any reason. If you own one do not sell it, you wil regret it I promise you that!
KB8TL Rating: 5/5 Jul 15, 2015 05:38 Send this review to a friend
Amazing receiver for CW op  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I had a TS-830S a few years back and sold it. :-(
I recently picked up another one from CList with the desk mic & speaker for a song, it even had the impossible to find YG-455C filter installed. The rig appears that it had sat somewhere unused for years (decades?) on it's side as there was no dust on the boards, no dirt on the fan. 100% orignal. It didn't have the YK-88C filter installed, but I found a good deal on one at So, now with both CW filters installed, I can compare it to my TS-590S and the two radios are neck and neck for digging signals out of the QRM. I thought the 21st century TS-590S would be the clear winner but not really, in fact it may be analog system of the 830 (or it's prettier front plate) but I think it is more pleasant to listen to (both using the same speaker). The only down side of the 830 for CW use is the noise of the relays when switching from transmit to receive and vise versa. I'm keeping this one.
N8WGM Rating: 5/5 Feb 26, 2015 07:18 Send this review to a friend
Old classic still a great one  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently bought a Kenwood TS830 off the E-ham net web site that was in the classifieds.

I have heard lots of the 830's on the air and was impressed with the audio quality of the transmissions. So I decided to try one out.

The radio came with the factory hand mic and the original box. It was in very good condition and found that it worked perfectly. (sigh of relief).

The Kenwood is a bit different to use than a modern rig as you have to tune the finals to transmit. I seem to have gotten used to that rather quickly and tuning is now not an issue. I every once in a while forget to turn the heater on and the rig goes mute without it on. Eventually I will learn.

Since getting the 830, I have gotten tons of praise for the audio quality. Seems that the folks at Kenwood got it right with this rig.

I use a Marshall MXL990 microphone that has been modified with new electronics and a new larger capsule. The only thing left of the original mic is the frame and screen cover. I am using the Ibox by W2IHY to run the Marshall into the 830. THe 830 drives a Alpha 76PA 3 holer into either a 80/40 double bazooka by Ultimax or a home brewed Hex Beam.

The Kenwood TS830 is one sweet radio. Very easy to listen to and just a fun radio to use overall.

I sold off all my other radios and the Kenwood TS830 will be my choice for radio of this shack.
If you can, get one but do not overpay. Around 300-500 for a good one and a bit more for those with all the filters.
N3RTD Rating: 5/5 Nov 28, 2014 07:14 Send this review to a friend
Still a great Radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I first want to comment that I cannot understand why some have chosen to give a low rating to this rig because after it was 20+ years old the Electrolytics burned up. Well that is very normal in tube radios after a period of time passes. And the reviews with a lowered rating because you have to tune it up, well you do not rate a car lower because you have to depress the gas pedal in and out quickly to set the choke on the older models to get it to start on a cold day, it is just part of what the technology was then, and should be rated accordingly. If you love Tube radios like me the tune up procedure is part of the charm of time gone by. Now onto a fair review, I having brand new rigs and old boat anchors, would rank the TS 830S as one of the best on the market. I know it is a used radio now, but as far as it's receiver is concerned it is better than most of the current production. The filters are absolutely great. I have the TS 820 S and love it as well, but the TS 830 is by far a leap over it. Having the filters and the WARC bands give it this leap. As far as the Audio they both are wonderful as all know. I ran a few tests and concluded that I am able to hear better on the TS830 than all my others, and this was mainly due to having the Notch and other variable filters. I was able to pull out weak signals I could not with my new radios which have the new dsp and so on. So if you have a chance to get an unmolested un-mutilated TS 830S be sure to get it even if they want EBAY gold prices for it, (of course within reason). I would not pay more than 400.00 for one now, but that is just me. I acquired mine from a silent key private sale, and I gave $200.00 for it, the low price only because I was not sure if it needed any work done to it. Being retired I could not give much more anyway. It had been completely gone through by a highly reputable repair shop in 2008, and needs nothing done to it. All the resisters that devalued were replaced, and the caps. So I was very blessed to get it. So in my estimation and opinion, It is still a force to be reckoned with in today's market for high quality radios, when being able to communicate, both transmit and receive is the main quality you are looking for, which in my opinion is the main reason we buy radios in the first place. Now all the other good qualities of the radio are just a bonus, like the Audio, the Tube finals and driver, the nostalgia, and the rock solid performance.
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