eHam.net - Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) Community

Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net


Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Kenwood TMV71A Help


Reviews Summary for Kenwood TMV71A
Kenwood TMV71A Reviews: 82 Average rating: 4.6/5 MSRP: $399.00
Description: The advanced Kenwood TM-V71A dual bander provides sophisticated, high-powered performance on 2 meters and 440 MHz. Power levels are 5/10/50 watts on both bands. The large radio display clearly conveys the status of the radio and can be set to green or amber.
Product is in production.
More info: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Kenwood_TMV-71A
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

Subscribe!
My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the Kenwood TMV71A.

Page 1 of 9 —>

SMAUG Rating: 4/5 Nov 19, 2014 15:19 Send this review to a friend
Very good overall  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I bought this because it was the cheapest radio of good quality from a known maker I could find with a detachable faceplate. If anyone made a detachable faceplate 2m radio, I'd have bought that.

That said, I use 70cm a lot more than I thought I would, as I'm in a major metro area.

Outgoing audio is great; I get good reports all the time.

The built-in speaker is OK as long as you're not using remote mounting of the power unit. Any built-in speaker is going to sound wimpy when it is mounted under the armrest storage area or under a seat in the car. I use a MFJ ClearTone speaker now; sounds great, with good build quality, and is cheap.

Most of the operation of the rig is intuitive. It takes a manual reference, for example, to figure out how to mark certain memories to be skipped during the scan, but all the common stuff is pretty easy. The manual was written by a native English-speaker, so it's never hard to find something. I keep the manual in the pocket behind the passenger seat in my 2012 Accord.

The cooling fan makes a little noise when it first powers up in cold weather, but goes away within a couple minutes.

The main reason I gave it only 4 stars is for the provided microphone. It looks and feels VERY solid. The housing could take one hell of a hit and still it would be OK. But it is one of those hinged PTT buttons, and the part that causes the hinging action broke on me one cold winter day in Chicago. So the mic still works, still sounds good, but the PTT button is kind of loosey-goosey. The PTT button is also heavily sprung, so holding it down with the left thumb, instead of the right index and middle fingers is quite fatiquing.

The mic on my old Yaesu 2500 felt much flimsier, but sounded as good and had a nice light PTT action. I could feel the plastic creaking in my hand, but by golly, it never let me down.

I use this with the MFJ-1729 dual band antenna. I can keep contact with a 70cm repeater that is on top of a 500' tall building from 50 miles away. That antenna is not as good on 2m as a 5/8 mag mount, but it does really well.

I will eventually get around to replacing the mic with something not as big or heavy, but that is friendlier to my hand. Maybe a Yaesu, hehehe.

-KC9ZHE
jzorns at yahoo dot com
 
KF6VTA Rating: 5/5 Aug 5, 2014 16:42 Send this review to a friend
An old friend comes back home  Time owned: more than 12 months
Sooooo many bad reviews on this radio. Yes! Many are right. I'm the first one to say that i had to fix the front volume controls. One day the right band wouldn't react to the turns of the knob. Yes! The unit gets hot even on standby mode without pressing the PTT. BUT... How about the good... Full duplex, AMAZING quality audio out in transmission... Sensitive receiver and mic. Several ilumination levels, crossband full or one way with a quality of sound unreachable by any other dual bander. Unit had its flows when built. Pitty because this unit is been one of my "all times favourite". Even the size of the display is bigger than any other dual bander these days. I use it everyday to monitor the bands and hear most of the time. I bought it new old stock from a deceased HAM. I want to keep honoring his decission to buy one amazing dual bander of all times... The FT-8100R. !
 
KF6VTA Rating: 5/5 Aug 5, 2014 16:32 Send this review to a friend
Amazing dual bander. Reminds me the Standard brand  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Amazing! I bought one unit about two years ago and didn't have the chance to tested properly. Now in 2014 i just bought a new one and i can say... It stays 24hrs on standby with spectacular results. INTERMOD is NOT a problem. This baby stands there and the front end stays cool. I'm very close to downtown Miami and not all the radios behave the right way. This one is comparable to my ft-8100 and my ft-8800. No noises, no problems. Nothing out of the ordinary. The radio has a dual band full duplex operation super neat. Crossbanding is simple and efective. No hidden menus, no crazy moves. Display dual colour. Good audio from internal speaker, and most of all..... Tons of features in the menu to play with. Easy to connect to internet and echolink. I personally don't like the mic style but it doesn't mean is bad because it is not. It's just the appearance of it... I'm more used to the yaesu mics for that matter.
At the very end we have a sensitive receiver, with good measurable power out and a robust construction of the body that reminds me my favourite brand from the past... STANDARD! Overall opinion.... Get one!!! You will love it. And if INTERMOD is your concern... This one doesn't give you trouble with it. Enjoy!!!!
 
AC5PS Rating: 5/5 Jul 15, 2014 17:44 Send this review to a friend
Two radio's in one  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Very good duel band transceiver. One of the best airband ham receivers I've had.
 
K6MTS Rating: 5/5 Jul 1, 2014 15:19 Send this review to a friend
I'd buy another if in the market  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've been using mine as a base 2m/440 for over a year. No issues at all. Works great, nice feature to flip body for speaker up or speaker down. Cross band, dual display color choice.

Not a ton of frills but a very complete dual band rig that I enjoy using. Would buy another one to use mobile but am covered with 857D and IC7000 for 2m/440 in the mobiles.
 
N3CAL Rating: 5/5 Jun 22, 2014 14:41 Send this review to a friend
Outstanding Rig  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've owned this rig for over three years now and it's been a solid performer. The menus are very easy to navigate. The rig is set up as a D-STAR Hotspot on 70 cm paired with a Moen GMSK board. It handles daily use as a D-star Hotspot running at full power.
 
W7MAG Rating: 5/5 Mar 4, 2014 20:31 Send this review to a friend
Still Awesome 2 yrs now.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Just a follow up.

I bought 6 of these 2 years ago.
All 6 radios still working perfectly.
Several are on cross band duty set to high
power on both sides. One in a VERY hostile
environment.(I recommend an external fan if
you have friends that are real rag chewers).
Even without external fans, I've not had any failures.
Nice job Kenwood.
Their commercial division must have added
some sauce to the mix for these radios.

If there is one con, I'd say it's the mic.
It would be nice to have a lock button on
the mic so others that get in the vehicle
can't change stuff using the DTMF when
it's locked.

Price is right too.
So what are you still reading for?
Go get yours!
 
VE7KTB Rating: 5/5 Mar 2, 2014 09:51 Send this review to a friend
Love It  Time owned: more than 12 months
Where to start...

Well I bought this radio to replace my FT-8800. this is the link to that review:
http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/3427?page=2

The short comings of the 8800 were enough to drive me away from Yaesu.

The Good:

1. Control head, the layout is nice, buttons are labled and back lit. Big plus in northern Canada where we have long nights.

2. Progamming, EASY!!! with only reading the manual once I was able to get memories programmed. Again alpha tagging is slow with out being able to tag from the keypad.

3. Crossband repeat, so many options! ability to oneway repeat or bi-directional repeat. with or with out a 500ms tail. MUCH better than the FT-8800.

4. Volume, its acceptable. rather low for a mobile, but with an external speaker it is usable.

5. Microphone, it is a "real" mic, interchangable with their commercial line of radios that are 8 pin RJ-45. it has a solid feel in my hand, and i can use a metal hangout clip. I like the feel of the mic, and it is also back lit.


The Not so good:

1. Memories, only 1000 memories shared between both sides. while it is less flexible than the FT-8800 it is more than enough for my needs.

2. Banks, or lack of. there are 10 zones of 100 channels. You are also not able to enter a zone and stay in the zone. PITA. if you are in a zone and come to the last channel in that zone and you go "up" a channel you are into the next zone.

This is the single worst feature about this radio I do not like. but not a deal breaker for me.

3. Software, get the RT software. Chirp does everything "live", as in any changes made while connected to the radio are changed live as you do it. the Kenwood software is pretty useless, but for free what does one expect.

I use RT for all my ham gear. It works well.

4. Having the mic connect to the drawer, where as the Yaesu connects to the head. My radio is remote mounted in my truck, I would prefer it to connect to the control head.

5. Cost of Kenwood accessories, way too much.

6. Zone Change only in one direction. if you are at zone 3 and want to go to zone 2 you must cycle though 4-10 and back to 1 to get to zone 2.

7. Front end filtering, it sucks, and is worse than the FT-8800. PL is a must where i live. while the AIP does work over all sensitivity takes a hit as well. I do not use AIP only because all the repeaters where I live, that I use transmit PL on the repeater output.

All in all I am very happy with the V71a. the not good is not enough to go back to Yaesu. The V71a is a much better radio in almost every aspect. i would like to see a firmware update to allow going "into" a zone and stay in the zone. other than that I really like the radio. I do not plan on selling it, even though I have a D700 that is also going into the truck(when ever it warms up here) it will only be for APRS and not used for voice.

While i give this radio a '5', it really should be a 4.5. little things that a re annoying , but, IMHO, this is a better radio over all than the FT-8800 that i owned before it.
 
K1PMA Rating: 5/5 Feb 23, 2014 06:28 Send this review to a friend
Great radio - Overpriced accessories   Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have had a fair share of radios in my one year as a ham. Icom, Yaesu, Kenwood and a couple cheap HT's. For some reason I find the Kenwoods to be just that much slicker and better than the other 2 big competitors. This radio is a sleeper...for some reason the big selling points 1) Crossband repeater 2) Remote control operation and 3) Echolink mode are not really advertised properly. All this for about $350 with some form of promotion.

For those that have no experience with cross band repeating. In essence you set one VFO B to RX/TX on 440 and VFO A to RX/TX to a repeater on 2M for example. So you can walk around your house/neighborhood with a HT radio and connect via the 71 to repeaters far away with full 50 watts of power. Very cool. Using this approach you get away without the need for costly duplexers.

Personally I find the Kenwood approach to the menu system much better than Yaesu or Icom. The cross band feature works great, a small learning curve but nothing too complex. Not sure what the practical application of the remote control function is but it's pretty neat (you use a HT to send DTMF tones which in turn a selection of functions on the Kenwood on/off).

The negatives are simply put the nickel and diming with the accessories...like the Echolink/Programming cable set...$50+ >? Really ? Or the fact that when installing in a car you will need another cable set to extend the control head from the 10" or so cable they provide. At least you get programming software for free from the Kenwood web site.

 
KA7OEI Rating: 5/5 Feb 18, 2014 10:46 Send this review to a friend
Successor to my long-lived TM-733A  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I got the TM-V71A to replace my (about) 20 year-old Kenwood TM-733A. That radio still worked fine, but the gold-plated spring-loaded contacts on the control head were just wearing out and despite thorough cleaning and using contact enhancer: It became unreliable as a mobile rig and more frequently getting its brains scrambled when the connections on the remote panel would drop out for an instant due to my pushing a button or hitting a big bump. As a "base" rig or for non-mobile portable use, it should still work fine.

Because it was only a tiny bit thicker and longer, I was able to use the original bracket for the '733 to mount it under the rear seat of my Jeep Cherokee, but I did run new microphone/control cables. Because standard "RJ" connectors are now used throughout, I know that I should be able to replace/repair a cable if that becomes necessary. I did break down and buy the (rather pricy!) cable extender kit (in addition to the remote mounting kit) but were I to have spent a bit more time, I could have probably found the right kind of (shielded) cable and avoided buying the extender. (My cable run was too long for the remote panel kit, anyway.)

I can find no obvious faults with this radio other than nit-picking about the fact that the TX power settings were about 20% off on the low and medium power levels - something that I could have adjusted were it actually important!

(There are free programs to configure this radio via computer as well as diagrams on the web to make the interfacing cable - but since this rig lives under the seat, in my car, I didn't bother with any of them: It took only about 15 minutes to manually enter the 50 or so memories of the local repeaters, this being aided by the fact that programming them was almost exactly the same as it had been on my old '733.)

As an upgrade from the '733, the enhanced scanning abilities (channel banks, frequency limits) are nice (although rarely used) as are the abilities to listen to other bands, namely 222 MHz. The color choice (amber or green) of the display is nice although I did find the numbers on the '71A to be very slightly harder to read at night than those on the '733 (in which' I'd installed amber LEDs) for some reason - but switching to the green backlight helped this considerably: I think that the numbers on this radio are just a tiny bit smaller than on the '733 and also that, from the driving position, off to the side, the contrast is very slightly lower. Had it not been flush-mounted in the dead-center of the car (in line with the gear shift - about the only place to put the display on this Jeep) it would have been both closer and at a better viewing angle.

The control head is a bit larger, heavier and "chunkier" than that of the older '733, as is the microphone - and both took a bit of getting used to. Rather than having the '733's several layers of front panel button functions with sub-functions and sub-sub functions, this has a more decipherable plain-text (mostly) menu system in which there is at least some hope of intuiting without the manual handy!

Unlike the stock '733, I haven't noticed an intermod problem around here - even with the "AIP" turned off, but most of the high-power transmitters responsible for the intermod have simply gone away around here.

* * *

Why did I pick this over the ICOM or Yaesu?

Both Kenwood and Yaesu tend to follow the same general philosophy through the years and if you know how to use one of their radios, you can generally muddle your way through another: Not so with Icom who seems to "change up" their radios every so often, sometimes making experience with one of their radios totally useless when trying to figure out another!

The main weight in choosing the Kenwood over the Yaesu was that it was similar in its operation to that of my old '733 so that I wouldn't really have to think too much about operating its basic features - VERY important when driving! Also, it appeared that the nagging problems that I'd had with the '733 (e.g. intermod, problems with the remote mounting kit) had been addressed with this newer radio.
 
Page 1 of 9 —>


If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions about Reviews, please email your Reviews Manager.