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Reviews Categories | Receivers: General Coverage | Panasonic RF-2600 Help


Reviews Summary for Panasonic RF-2600
Panasonic RF-2600 Reviews: 2 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $Approx 300
Description: 80s vintage general coverage receiver
Product is in production.
More info: http://
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KC0EKQ Rating: 4/5 Jul 9, 2015 13:57 Send this review to a friend
An excellent performer  Time owned: more than 12 months
Apparently there were some QC issues with this model, because my experience with it is quite different than the other reviewer's experience.

I've had mine for a few years now, and it is one of my favorite receivers, in the Top 3 of my all-time radio list. Here's why...

First, it just looks awesome.I don't know that anyone could argue otherwise, unless they *really* hate the look/style of most receivers from the 70's and early 80's. Among those radios the Panasonic's are some of the best at mixing functional design and cosmetic design so well -- lots of knobs and switches, each a useful addition, none of them superfluous, a well lit band drum/display, a fair-sized analog S/Battery meter, and perhaps its prettiest and very useful feature, that beautiful blue digital frequency display.

Second, it performs beautifully.

I've had a lot of radios over a lot of years, and quite a few that were better than the RF2600, to be sure, but those that are better are either much more expensive and/or a tabletop with more features. For an ostensibly 'portable' radio, the 2600 holds its own quite well.

There is a very satisfying feeling tuning an analog radio with a digital display -- you can finesse the signal as needed, but you're never unsure of the frequency you're on and for SW especially, this is a fine thing indeed.

On AM/MW the 2600 performs very well, better than many other portables in my shack, and with a loop (especially the Quantum Loop.v2!) it really shines. It is not the equal of its smaller brother, the RF2200, in the MW department, but it is very good and certainly FAR more than adequate for all but the most discerning DXer.

SW is almost as good as AM, on its whip antenna. It doesn't go deaf on any bands, it hears equally across its entire range and can indeed dig out some weak signal catches.

On FM, this radio shines! the 2600 has been my reference/go-to FM receiver since I first played with it. On its whip it is quite sensitive, and selectivity is stunning, to me -- for example, it consistently, reliably separates with full quieting four loud local signals on 97.3, 97.5, 97.7 and 97.9.

With its big warm speaker and bass/treble controls (which actually work, unlike the tone knobs on a number of modern radios), the 2600's audio is very rich, clear and loud, a pleasure to hear. There is a wide/narrow filter switch which works very well on SW and MW, but of course on FM it has no effect.

On the downside, I would NOT, however, want to use it for real SSB reception -- the BFO works, and I've used it a number of times, but only for short periods of listening. It's fussy and tends to drift badly, and listening for more than a few minutes becomes an unpleasant, fatiguing ordeal.

Sure, it's big and with batteries it's quite heavy and cumbersome enough that it's a stretch to call it a portable receiver, but it travels well with me.

In my experience, it is not a battery hog, but it's not a sipper, either. It lasts as long on a set of batteries as the Sony 7600G does, and longer if you don't keep the dial lights/frequency display on all the time.

I think the 2600 holds its own very, very well in its class, and outshines many vintage portables on all counts (except SSB), and it even surpasses some modern receivers (better AM than any Tecsun portable I use, better FM than all of them).

HIGHLY recommend a reasonably-priced purchase -- it is not a cheap plastic toy but neither is it the Holy Grail. Be vigilant when searching for one, some people think it's some kind of hen's teeth rarity. A cursory glance at one of the more famous auction sites gives the lie to that notion.

A solid 4 out of 5 -- but for the SSB, I would very likely issue the RF2600 a solid 5.
 
CRAIGRADIO Rating: 4/5 Oct 12, 2006 12:22 Send this review to a friend
easy on the eyes  Time owned: more than 12 months
I had the rf-2600 for about 8 months. an ebay buy, but I used it mostly for casual fm listening. which is not its ideal environment so I set it free back on ebay. What i remember is that it did have a nice sound from a large speaker, strong SW capabilities, and a nice blue digital/analog frequency readout. handy S-meter, and a decent heft to it.
It is a collector's item, though for plastic you should decide what you are willing to spend.
Not prudent to use the D-battery route, nice long whip worked well for most signals,with SSB capabilities.
 


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