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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held | Icom IC-4SA Help

Reviews Summary for Icom IC-4SA
Icom IC-4SA Reviews: 2 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: 1989 UHF FM (430-450 Mhz) HT Transceiver.
Product is in production.
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VK7ZJA Rating: 4/5 Oct 14, 2006 15:35 Send this review to a friend
Dated, but works well  Time owned: more than 12 months
When writing a review for a rig that's from the late 1980s, you have to keep in mind the technology available at the time, and the level of performacne typically achievable from that era.
In that light, the Icom IC 4SA (and IC 4SE it's European twin, as well as the IC 4SAT / IC 4SET keypad deluxe versions) worked quite well compared to it's contemparies at the time. It's remarkably sensitive. It wasn't all that selective, but then again you do have to remember this was the smallest HT available at the time, and remained so for quite a few years afterward. The IC 4SA/4SE due to it's lack of keypad was tough to program and set up, but once you'd put everything into memory and set up your preferred settings, then it was easy to operate after that.
Icom even managed to squeeze in a clock - a feature that I would appreciate in every rig (I don't wear a watch).
Problems: The rig got fairly hot after a few minutes TX at high power, and if operating at the edge of the band could send the rig into PLL unlock. The squelch was a bit indecisive - setting it knife edge above threshold was never a good idea. And lastly, the DC charging jack was prone to failure - and should it fail, the rig would fail too (socket internal contacts switches battery lines)

This rig is totally outclassed by the modern day micro rigs such as VX2r - dual band, far more RX coverage, smaller, lighter, similar power output, more features, similar if not better sensitivity and probably better selectivity etc. But you must recognize that some 15 years has elapsed between the release of the Icom IC 4SA/SE and modern day micro HTs.

However, despite the passage of time, the Icom IC 4SA/SE still look very attractive in design, and if you need a single band HT, then these do quite well. They still command relatively higher second hand prices than other rigs of their era, indicating their popularity of the time.
KK7PW Rating: 5/5 Dec 5, 2005 16:33 Send this review to a friend
Terrific HT w/ tone encoder  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently acquired this HT used but in excellent condition. Fortunately, I found and installed the rare and out-of-stock UT-51 tone encoder and BA-11 bottom cap and now have a nifty 440 base / mobile station. Compared to current HT's, this unit is somewhat cumbersome to program but easy to use thereafter, small and light-weight, and well built to last. If you happen to find one in good condition, grab it but be sure it includes the tone encoder unit (verify in programming menu or by opening case) otherwise repeater use will be limited and simplex-only the primary mode. PDF manual can be downloaded at:

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