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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Kenwood TS-430S Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-430S
Kenwood TS-430S Reviews: 79 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $400.00 without filters or PS
Description: Kenwood TS-430S all Mode ,all Band HF transciever
Product is not in production.
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SWLCHRIS Rating: 5/5 Oct 26, 2017 07:37 Send this review to a friend
Updated review  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Ok I now have had this rig for a period of time and I realized I need to update my review.
First off , for a 30 year plus lifespan this radio is amazing for what it is capable of.
Lets start with the receive. If you can't hear them you can't work them.
Receive on this radio I have to revise from being good to absolutely fantastic.
On 20 meters I was hearing hams from South Florida at a s7 to s 9 with a French station underneath them. The French station was workable and after a period of time I was able to use the frequency to make the contact.
The narrow SSB filter is good at separating the stations from the splatter. The wide filter on AM is great for fidelity of the SWBC bands.
The noise blanker works very well and it is touchy but once I find that null I don't hear the noise anymore.
I am using a 145 ft OCFD dipole at 35 ft and I am able to hear stations from Europe, South America, the Mideast, and Oceania fairly well.

On transmit I am amazed by the radios capability. Power output remains strong at 110 to 120 watts on cw and ssb. After fixing my power supply problem I found out that was the true power output of this particular radio. It had been 80 watts at best.
The transmitted audio gets good reports with a MC60a desk microphone. The signal reports are now much better than before. I am able to work Europe consistently on 40 meters when conditions permit with good reports. Imagine my surprise one night a few weeks ago when I went onto 40 meters and called CQ and had Switzerland and Italy answer my call.
Using the MC60A with the amp off and the speech processor in I found out I didn't have to have the mic gain on 6 or 7 anymore and now it runs at a comfortable 3 or 4 and the alc is at perfect deflection.

Overall, for a first time ham and longtime SWL'er this is an outstanding value at the going rate of 300 plus dollars. I got mine for a little less which makes it even more outstanding considering it had both AM and narrow SSB filters already in.
W0XX Rating: 5/5 Jul 19, 2016 04:16 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio and a Great Performer!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had a number of 430's over the years and periodically, come back to owning one. Why? They look good and perform really well! Very sensitive and selective receiver, full of capabilities and functions and pretty much a full HF radio in a box for a beginner on HF.

Easy to repair or get repaired and lots of users out there.
WB0OKA Rating: 5/5 Dec 19, 2014 10:18 Send this review to a friend
Oldie but Still a Genuine Goodie  Time owned: more than 12 months
I call the rig an "oldie" only because time flies when it comes to amateur radios and equipment. Despite its age, it is to me, one of the finest all solid state rigs built. I have two that I use on a regular basis, one at my home and one at my portable location at my work. I picked up a very good one, cosmetically and operationally, as part of a package deal on ebay- the transceiver, the power supply, the speaker, and the matching antenna tuner for a song ($450) all in original boxes. Another I purchased has some small issues with it, but as a previous reviewer mentioned, the radio is easy to work on so rectifying the problems took little time. It is back on the air working flawlessly. The third I purchased was from a CB operator that realized it did not work well for that, so dirty, dented, and full of cock roaches, it ended up in my hands. With little work, it was back on the air too.

Long story short, I think they are darn good, reliable radios and if you are looking for a solid state, WARC-option rig for whatever reason, grab it.

Incidentally, I have not read about the 430 having the "dots" problem like the 440 and 450, but perhaps other reviewers can dispute that. Of the three I have described, none have developed that issue.
KB9MRK Rating: 5/5 Mar 14, 2013 10:35 Send this review to a friend
A Great old rig!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
The Ts430s is really a great rig. The one thing that I like about it is the fact it is easy to work on. Most of the problems with these rigs are very easy to fix and usually are loose connectors. If you get one in good shape they have very good receive and transmit. They are simple to operate and very solid. I installed the A.M and SSB filter in mine, also I got an F.M board installed as well. The AM filter is really worth it if you like to listen to Shortwave and such...Makes a huge difference. This rig is under-rated in my opinion, it does have some short-comings, but really for an old rig they are simple fixes and so much info on the internet is available. For the price... Well you cant go wrong, and is most likely the best bang for the buck for a used old rig.
GM8GIQ Rating: 5/5 Jan 21, 2013 09:30 Send this review to a friend
SUPERB OLD RIG  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
One of the best rigs I have used.
Great receiver and excellent transmit audio.
Easy to use, must be getting old but prefer to use this than my 897D because of lack of menus.
Everything you want at the press of a button.
Bargain buy if you can get one buy one you will not be sorry.
KB2BAF Rating: 5/5 Nov 4, 2012 17:11 Send this review to a friend
Great Rig for it's age  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've got to tell you, I bought my 430 in 1986 and it has worked flawlessly ever since. After 26 years, it still has full output. The alignment is still right on the money and all functions work. Yes, it's a simple rig and doesn't have the bells and whistles that other rigs have but it has that great Kenwood audio. I use a Sennheiser MD421 mic with it and I always get great audio reports. The only thing I'm not crazy about is the AGC speed, which tends to be a little slow. It's only really noticeable after unkeying with the amplifier on. Bear in mind it's not adjustable on this rig. It takes about 2 seconds for the level to come back up to normal. Under normal recieving conditions it's fine, though. Other than that, I can't complain about a thing with it. After all these years, to never have a problem and still be well aligned is amazing. I will use it as long as it works or if I die first. If you are looking for a good, solid starter rig and can find one that is working well, I wouldn't hesitate to buy it.
STAYVERTICAL Rating: 5/5 Jul 28, 2012 23:19 Send this review to a friend
Ideal nostalgia rig  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I have not been a fan of Kenwood since some bad experiences with their early equipment.
But, having seen a forlorn looking TS430S at a hamfest which no one seemed to want, I decided to adopt it.
It had not been used for six years, was obviously used mobile for many years, and looked and smelled like a camels armpit.

For the price, I thought I would try to restore it to working condition, or junk it for spares.
Well, when I powered it up, it worked fine, and has continued to do so for the last six months.

Now cleaned up and de-odorized it has performed really well for such an abused rig.
I have been very impressed with its performance and ease of use, and it is actually fun to use.
It is also small and someone has put the wideband transmit on, so it is ready for any new WARC bands as well.

If you are looking for a starter vintage rig, or a nostalgia rig, with a small footprint, this is a great little rig.

Oh - and after using this rig, Kenwood has been redeemed in my eyes.
If they have continued the legacy of this rig in their new offerings, I will put them on my short list for my next new rig.

73 - Rob
WB1AAL Rating: 5/5 Mar 24, 2012 06:30 Send this review to a friend
Great Old Time Radio--They Just Knew How To Build Them!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've generally been happy with just about every Kenwood product that I've purchased. This includes several different Kenwood stereo products and a two-meter mobile. So when I saw a pristine Kenwood TS-430S, fully loaded and with power supply, in the used equipment section at Universal Radio--well, it was love at first sight.

Have you ever had a radio call your name and ask to come home with you? That's what the TS-430S did. (Yes, I am an otherwise sane individual.) I had even left the store and gotten into my car to drive home when the rig called me back inside.

Let's face it, they just knew how to build decent radios in the 1980s. True, they lack the bells and whistles of today's rigs. But sometimes that's a good thing. I love my modern Alinco and Yaesu gear, but the user manual is a necessity especially for those less often used but never-the-less important features. I always keep the Alinco and Yaesu PDFs of the user manuals nearby and handy on my iPad for these two state-of-the-art rigs.

Not so with rigs of the same generation as the TS-430S. They somehow were more intuitive to operate. They managed to get the job done in a much more simple and straightforward manner. Frankly, there is just something pleasing about that. As other reviewers have said on eHam, you can operate this rig in just a few minutes and the manual is optional.

Once at my home and connected up in the shack, the TS-430S did not disappoint. Neither did the signal or audio reports from the other hams who I QSOed with on CW and SSB. The receiver is sensitive, selective and sweet sounding. The transmitter is rock steady with a solid measured output of 110 watts on all bands except for 10 meters where it runs 95 watts.

I am saving the link to the eHam reviews of the Kenwood TS-430S. I will use it to re-read my review and the other eHam reviews of this marvelous rig. Should I ever be tempted to do so, the link will serve as a reminder never to sell this rig. It's too much of a sweetheart and a winner!
K4TMN Rating: 5/5 Mar 9, 2012 18:51 Send this review to a friend
Excellent rig and easy to maintain.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I remember when I got my Novice ticket, that I lusted over a TS-430S. Many hams used the TS-430S and the TS-130 as mobile rigs. The TS-430S was almost always brought out on field day.

These days this excellent rig is available from $250 to $450, depending on what it comes with and what filters it has inside.

I had one, added filters, fixed the little problems that it had and used it for years. Then I decided to get a modern rig and sold my trusty TS-430S. That was a mistake. I eventually decided to get another one, and again added the filters and fixed the little things like the dial light, relays, and memory battery. It works great - so great that I bought another one to use on field day and to have as a backup.

It doesn't have a TCXO, and doesn't really need one. I love the sound, sensitivity, and feel of this old rig. It is a great rig for general SSB and CW. I also love to listen to AM, since it also has the AM filter.

You can spend more for an inexpensive general coverage receiver, but why - when you can have a transceiver with general coverage receive?

This is one of my favorite rigs of all time. It is easy to repair, and is one of the best designs of a small sized, full power transceiver.
NA5XX Rating: 4/5 Aug 13, 2011 19:56 Send this review to a friend
Great field radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought this radio as a field radio. It is simple to use and sounds great. It lacks DSP and this is possibley the only fault you can give it. As a field radio, any one can sit in front of it and be operating in 3 min. If you can find one, buy it.
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