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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Alinco DR-635 Help


Reviews Summary for Alinco DR-635
Alinco DR-635 Reviews: 53 Average rating: 3.7/5 MSRP: $375.00
Description: 2M/440 full-duplex capable, remote-able
Product is not in production.
More info: http://www.alinco.com
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You can write your own review of the Alinco DR-635.

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KD8HAM Rating: 5/5 Aug 10, 2013 19:55 Send this review to a friend
1 year update  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned this unit for over a year now and thought I'd write an update. In early 2012, while it was still cold, the display would start acting up on really cold days. Some of the digits would not display correctly, but the radio would TX and RX fine. Sometimes warmer temps would fix this problem, but then the display gave up the ghost. I sent an email to good folks at Alinco, who instructed me to send back the radio. Took about 3 weeks and radio was back and has since worked flawlessly.

I still commute quite a bit and use this radio while am on the road for almost 2 hours a day. Have this hooked up to a cheap 5/8 wave antenna from Amazon.com. No problems at all. Good signals on both VHF and UHF. Intermod in some areas can be a little bit of a hassle.

All in all, a decent radio at a decent price. Might add the Alinco HF radio to my shack and for field day.

 
W4KVW Rating: 5/5 Feb 11, 2013 14:45 Send this review to a friend
A KEEPER FOR ME! {:>)  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I am usually an ICOM MAN on most of my gear but I got a decent price on this rig at HAMCATION this past weekend with the separation kit.It by far is the EASIEST radio I have EVER programmed hands down.I did not even open the manual until I was needing to scan for a repeater tone & that was simple as well.No issues here in my shack with intermod that others have spoken of.If it will hold up it may have a home for a LONG LONG time here in my shack.Looks GREAT,works GREAT,has GREAT receive & transmit audio as well.VERY bright & clear display as well.Looking forward to putting it through a long run of QSO'S & I think it will do just fine.Two of us purchased one of these from the same fellow & they both look NEW with everything that came with them NEW other than that little wrench to tighten the mounting screws.All in all a well thought out rig with SIMPLE menu's that other companies could take a lesson from! {:>)
 
KG4SUM Rating: 5/5 Jan 7, 2013 10:26 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have had this radio for over a month and It works Great! It is easy to program, and to use. So far I have not had any inter-mod problems that other users have reported. The only thing I don't like about it is the software controlled SQL. I would prefer the traditional SQL using a pot. Two meter performance is equal to or better than my ICOM IC-2100H.
 
K1RIP Rating: 4/5 Sep 27, 2012 14:37 Send this review to a friend
good radio, better service  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
i own an alinco dr 235 and love it, the only 2 meter/70 centimeter radio i had was an H/T FT60. when it came time to buy a dual band radio i went straight to alinco for two reasons: one was the reliablity of my 235, the other was price. the programming was straight forward and easy enough even for me to program with a little help from a buddy. about 2 days short of owning it for one month it developed a noise/hum when on high power. i called R&L where i bought it and they said bring it in and we'll test it. i took it in and just like going to the doctor it wouldn't do it again. i boxed it up and brought it home and figured it was just a fluke. nope, it started again after 5 minutes or so of use, so i called them the next morning and they said they'd send it back for me for warranty work, and being afraid of gremlins i didn't really want that, so, i hesitantly asked if they would let me return the radio if i bought a more expensive one, and they agreed! so, for $59.38 i bought a Kenwood v71a and i have had nothing but compliments on the radio. i like the way it looks and is built and am happier than i was with the alinco. i love my 235 and would have kept the 635 if it had not had a problem that i was afraid would never have been found. i credit R&L electronics for working with me and will buy all my new radios from them from now on. you can't buy service like that anymore.
 
W8GND Rating: 4/5 Jun 9, 2012 03:16 Send this review to a friend
Good radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Dandy radio. It has nothing I can complain about.

I have a high voice, and that doesn't work with many radios. However, with this one, people tell me I sound wonderful.

No intermod problems. Don't expect any
 
AD5KO Rating: 5/5 May 25, 2012 09:56 Send this review to a friend
Very Good  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I usually prefer Yaesu or Icom mobiles but after reading the reviews here and considering the price of each radio with the same capabilities I decided to try the Alinco and I'm very glad I did.

At first I didn't like the radio, it wasn't what I was used to. But programming it is easy and within an hour I became very comfortable with it and the same evening I installed the radio in the car I had a number of QSO's on simplex up to 50 plus miles. This test lasted for a few hours and the radio did not become hot from extended high power use, the radio has a small fan which comes on during transmit, it's very quiet. The receive audio is very good and the transmit audio reports I got were the same.

I like the feel of the controls, they are smooth and solid. Being used to Yaesu and Icom mics I didn't like the look of the Alinco mic but in practice it's nice to use. It's the DTMF mic so it made programming a breeze, it really couldn't be easier.

I set the display color on red, or orange and I do not find it to be to bright at night, currently the brightness level is set at 3 out of 4. The blue looks good also and with a brightness level of 2 it is also ok for night time driving. I find the multi color RX, TX and SB option distracting so I don't use it. I very much like the layout of the display despite the small size of the radio, it's actually got a bigger display than many others. The radio is only 5.5 inches wide so fitting it in a vehicle is easier to install where size is an issue.

I noticed in a couple of review comments about the GPS connection or the lack of one, well it does have a dedicated GPS connection inside the radio, there is even a diagram for it in the user manual. So it would be very easy to set up a TNC and a GPS if needed.

I also saw another comment about not being able to skip channels in memory during a scan, well the radio does that too and I use it. It's in the manual. I am amazed how some people have given the radio bad reviews because they didn't read the user manual. It's the first thing I do. As I write this the radio has a review score of 3.8 out of 5 and this is mostly because people didn't read the manual. It deserves a better score.

Weather, I programmed in some NOAA channels and set them to skip on scan. So the radio not having a dedicated WX mode is not an issue. You can even listen to the weather channels or public service channels and still operate 2m or 70cm at the same time, useful for storm spotting etc. I like the dual scan function and the independent volume controls for each band.

I find the radio to be very sensitive and I needed to turn up the squelch quite high but interestingly it did not loss the weaker stations when I did this. I live near a commercial tower and as usual I expected some issues because of that, well the Alinco isn't bothered by it at all, so that was a surprise. I found I actually liked the preset squelch as apposed to a knob, same as a portable.

The removable control head is useful even if you don't remote the radio because the head can be fitted in two ways which lets you turn the main body over, positioning the speaker top or bottom. And if you are concerned about security you can remove the head and stash it in the glove box in just a few seconds. I have in the past broken the RJ-45 mic cable connectors on both my Icom and Yaesu radios, I don't have any doubts about the long term reliability of the mic connector on the Alinco, so even that's a plus. But if you want to remote the radio you can use a standard RJ-45 cable for that.

The build quality is as good as Yaesu and Icom. I don't have anything bad to say about the radio. For a $300 radio, I'm impressed.

I would like more memory channels and a faster scan option but those are not critical issues, just preferences and you can scan VHF and UHF or the other bands at the same time anyway, so it's faster than it looks.

For performance, price, function and build quality I give the radio a 5.


I hope this review is helpful.

73,

AD5KO
 
WV4I Rating: 5/5 Oct 31, 2011 08:15 Send this review to a friend
works great  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I use this radio in my VW Jetta diesel with a short, center loaded, V/U antenna. The power comes straight from the battery. It is under dash (left side) mounted. I normally have 2M and air band receive active (dual receive). Have occasionally used 440. I have not not noticed any intermod, or any any other undesirable performance. I get excellent transmit audio reports. I sometimes hear 2 repeaters on the same freq, with band openings, and not using tone squelch. I don't own expensive test equipment, and won't repeat features, specs, avail elsewhere, except to say this radio easily works well, and as advertised.

Having used Yaesu mostly, especially for HTs and mobile HF/V/U, the menu/button scheme is a little different with Alinco, so did need to open the manual a bit.

The mike connects to the front of the radio, round connector, not modular, and the cable is well reinforced entering the plug, sticks straight out 2"-3", doubt this will ever break.

The display gives 3 color choices per mode, i.e. transmit, receive. The only comment here is that it's a bit bright on max dim at night, could use a mod, or perhaps just some tinted Saran wrap, etc., over display if lots of night use planned, and depending on ergonomics of your application.

For a V/U radio with true dual receive, this radio is an excellent value, and works as advertised here in metro areas of South Florida.
 
K6NJ Rating: 5/5 Sep 16, 2011 10:51 Send this review to a friend
A great radio for the price  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
These radios can be had for around $300 brand new! Considerably less than the competitors with similar features. I have two of these radios an I am very happy with them. I've owned several Yaesu radios (FT7900R, FT-8800R) and I like a lot of the features on the Alinco better. There is a small issue with intermod that you read about with other reviews, however, this is not really an issue in my environment. It may be an issue in a large city, however, I live in a mid sized city with lots of radio traffic and towers and it is not a significant issue. You can purchase the programming software from www.cbtinc.net. It is simple and works great! The Yaesu YSK7800 separation cable will work with this radio. I get great audio reports, I like the display and the features. I recommend this radio.
 
K7ZEM Rating: 5/5 Jun 25, 2011 23:52 Send this review to a friend
positive  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
cons: slow scan, power level is 5w, 35, and 50 on 2m. 5w, 25w, and 35w on 440. I miss the 10w setting. I cannot figure out the Busy Channel Lock out feature, it is supposed to block you from transmitting when someone else is, I couldn't get it to work. not that big of a deal.
PROS: 339.99 free delivery and no sales tax from HRO. It does not include the seperation kit but it can be purchased at Ham Radio Outlet for $40.00. Still cheaper that the Yaesu FT 8800. It does not have all the memory banks, ARTS, and other features I never use, it is a great bare bones full duplexing mobile. Did I mention how much I love the Crossband repeat! it's also capable of aprs upgrade. also, the microphone and cord and connector is way better than the yaesu. it has programmed memory scans, simpex scans, and tone scans, I've used these with no problem. it is very easy to program. The face can be put on upside down depending on how you want to mount it. I allways use an external speaker anyway, stock speakers on most of these small dual band mobiles have alot to be desired. it has a perfect time out timer that can be set for 90 seconds, which works well with my local machine. automatic power off. I love this radio.
 
K4KRW Rating: 5/5 Mar 14, 2011 20:45 Send this review to a friend
Great! - 5 years and counting  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned my DR-635 now for 5 years. I bought the remote mount kit for the control head. It works well. I do not have the digital voice or APRS modules. If I wanted to do APRS, I would spend the money and get the Kenwood TM-D710A. It is clearly built for the task.

I have found my DR-635 to be very easy to use. I use it almost every day. I normally use my radio in dual band mode monitoring both 2m and 70cm repeaters. I have used the cross band repeat capability and it works very well.

I have also used my radio to listen to aircraft frequencies and to the FM broadcast band when I was having problems with my car radio. Sound quality is pretty good. I do use an external speaker though (main unit is in the trunk).

This radio has done everything I have asked it to do.

I have experienced intermod at times. But not very often and it has never been big enough of a problem that I could not operate.

I did have to re-wire my microphone plug one time due to wear and tear. FYI: If you are transmitting and the radio starts beeping like R2-D2, check your mic cord/plug. In my case, I think the shield had loose strands touching other pins.

Other than that, it has been a trouble free radio and an absolute pleasure to use.

73,
Richard - K4KRW
 
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