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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Yaesu FTM-10R Help

Reviews Summary for Yaesu FTM-10R
Yaesu FTM-10R Reviews: 51 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $460
Description: Dual band transceiver with multi-band coverage.
Product is in production.
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VA3LAN Rating: 4/5 Feb 16, 2011 15:55 Send this review to a friend
Tough Nut!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have put the radio in as a Mobile Rig / SUV. However I would have given it 5/5 but the menu is complacted and tiresome. I know all the new radios made today are menu drive but complacted is the best word to discribe this little unit.

Another caution is the installment of a Mek-M10 front Mic Jack. I had pulled open the back of the head unit and pulled apart 2 conectors attached to the surface mount bord. I had to take it back to the dealer who replaced it and reinstalled the front mount jack. Trust me let a expert do the instaltion!

All in All a smart unit I must say!
KE5CVT Rating: 5/5 Jul 6, 2010 18:57 Send this review to a friend
Great purpose-built motorsports radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
The negatives of this unit are a very short list: 1) poor AM broadcast sensativity 2) lack of full UHF aero band coverage [225-400 MHz] 3) lack of waterproofing/moisture resistance in the external front mounted mike jack.

I have been operating the FTM-10R for about 3 years now. The radio is installed in a steel console in a Jeep CJ-5 and used in a hot, dusty, enviornment where vibration is the norm. For offroad use, I can not think of a better radio save a MILSPEC PRC series radio that would be as rugged. It is used as my primary 2m/75cm rig. it performs exceptionally with good sensativity and selectivity. It is rugged, well-built, and chocked full of a lot of features that are only availble together on this model.

If you need a dual-band ham rig for a Jeep or ORV, this is your rig.
NP3WH Rating: 5/5 Jun 6, 2010 14:51 Send this review to a friend
TOUGH BRICK RADIO...  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
S/N:7G030XXX. That's all folk's...
VE6RAO Rating: 4/5 Apr 24, 2010 09:06 Send this review to a friend
Great Radio  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
The only reason I gave it a '4', Good rating, is that the menu's take a bit to learn, but once you figure out how the menu system works, there is a ton of features that you can access via the menu system. Audio quality is excellent and the radio is solidly built. I have it mounted to the rear of my centre console, and the head unit is mounted on the left side of my dash, which allows me to see what frequency I am on at a quick glance. I use the handheld microphone as I find it easier to use then transmitting through the radio's head unit. Again, my only complaint is getting used to the menu system, but with the actual radio itself, I have no complaints! Great unit and would recommend this to my friends!
W2LEW Rating: 4/5 Apr 16, 2010 00:05 Send this review to a friend
Tiny Radio But That Mic  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I needed a new mobile radio to replace my aging IC-2800. Having just purchased a new FTR-350R for my truck, I could not convince the XYL to let me buy another $600 rig for the minivan. The FTR-10 was an easy sell for her. When the rig arrived I was amazed at how much smaller it was than its big brother. Aside from a few headaches setting up the menus for various functions I am pleased with the rig, EXCEPT. What was Yaesu thinking when they designed the optional hand microphone. It is half the size of the rig, I have big hands and can barely hold it.Also with the control head connection in the recessed area of the case, connecting and dis connecting the modular plug is a pain when removing the control head from the car. I solved this by installing a 12" CAT5 cable and a modular coupling. The rig is not a 350R but for about $300 less it gets the job done.
WZ1P Rating: 4/5 Apr 13, 2010 16:29 Send this review to a friend
Not For The Simple Minded.  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I bought this radio because I wanted a semi-waterproof 2m/70cm rig that also did well on AM, FM, FM Stereo, WX, Aircraft and extended VHF/UHF. This radio does an exceptional job on all of these bands. This rig is a BRICK! From the massive case to the big dumb wonderful sounding microphone which is totally waterproof. The FM 2m/70cm as well as the FM Stereo audio quality is way better than I could ever had hoped for. The internal speaker is 100% crapola. Trash it and buy yourself a really high quality mylar speaker for about three bucks!

Having a problem receiving AM or FM? Get a real antenna. Most people mount them on motorcycles from what I understand. I have been an avid biker for 40 years. I may mount it on my military KLR-650 but I don't want to limit my use of this fine radio just yet.

The menu programing takes a bit of gray matter to understand. My only complaint about the manual is that they OVEREXPLAIN all of the commands in plain english. What could have been said in one paragraph takes two pages. WOW, that's a new twist.

I guess the bottom line is:

A. Is it worth the $300.00 average price?

B. Would I buy it again knowing what I do now?

C. Would I reccommend it to a friend?

D. Would I use it on a motorcycle or in a vehicle?

The answer is yes to all.

I have no plans to use their bluetooth feature so I'm not qualified to comment on that feature. This is one rugged little brick that would survive just about anything. It was not designed to be a sweet looking little rig. It's UGLY!! Therein lies the beauty and the quality.

73, Dan WZ1P
KD8GTP Rating: 5/5 Mar 8, 2010 15:54 Send this review to a friend
Great little radio  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I installed this unit in my car. It works great, has many features and will mount in the smallest vehicles. Yes, it is menu driven and if you don't like menus then look for something simpler.
KB3SEA Rating: 5/5 Aug 13, 2009 21:10 Send this review to a friend
portable, with a punch!  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I think this is a great radio. Only problem is the separation defeats the waterproof feature. not a big deal for me, I keep it in a plastic case for mountaintopping mostly. It would have been nice if they added a wide band receiver....then it would be just about perfect!
G6DLJ Rating: 5/5 Jul 4, 2009 04:27 Send this review to a friend
Ideal for mazda MX-5!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've only owned this rig for 3 days so this a 'first' impressions account rather than a full blow review, however so far so good, I'm very impressed. I picked up the rig for 175 including a mag mount and weird 3rd party mounting bracket. I'd read various comments here to say the rig was hard to drive and even harder to program, yet I found both to be the easiest of any on the Yaesu rigs I own (FT-8900, VX-2, VX-7 and FT-857). The menus seems very logical and simple to me buy maybe that's 'cos I sat down and read the manual cover to cover first?

I went for this rig as I've just bought a new MX-5 soft top and space is at a premium, so it fits nicely in the centre consol with a simple L-shaped bracket covered in black tape and fixed with double sided tape making for quick removal and a no-hole installation. The umbilical cord is terminated in an RJ45 meaning you could use a regular screened network cable to remote the head which I've done.

Not quite sure why I'd need a PA or a siren but having the mic and second speaker in the remote head has saved me having to fit a gooseneck mic and extension speaker. Likewise being able to alter the mic gain and the option to automatically increase the RX volume as road noise increases is huge bonus, Yaesu really thought this puppy out. Both AM Air and Marine VHF reception is good and easy enough to label and program into memory. OK, so there's option to program via PC but let's it only take a few seconds to program each memory and making changes is a doddle, and once it's done it's done...zzzzz. This rig would make an ideal Air/Marine scanner in it's right.

So far I'm very impressed, personally I can't find any negatives, though I really need to get my head around the various memory layout options!
KD4PBS Rating: 5/5 Apr 27, 2009 19:43 Send this review to a friend
97.5% perfect for a motorcycle.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I purchased this radio a couple weeks ago with the intentions of using this on my motorcycle. This unit has met or surpassed my expectations. FYI my ride is a 2008 Kawasaki Nomad 1600.
To begin with, I'll outline my configuration:
I have the MMB-M11 handlebar mounting bracket supporting the control panel on the left side, next to the mirror/clutch clamp. I threaded the cable through some nylon webbing to help protect it from abrasion, and to dress the look of the cable somewhat. This webbing extends down past the triple clamp through the frame bracketry, protecting the control panel cabling thoroughly.
I have two of the Yaesu MLS-200-M10 waterproof speakers mounted to two of the fairing support bolts. The whole control panel and speaker mounting configuration was seamless, and did not cause me to have to modify anything in the bracketry of the motorcycle, or the radio and speakers.
The RF deck is mounted securely into the right hard saddlebag. I had to slightly elongate the holes on the RF deck mounting bracket in order to use some existing hardware that fastens the top saddlebag hook to the saddlebag. This allowed for minimal modification of the motorcycle.
I did have to drill 4 holes into the saddlebag to route the cables from the RF deck. The holes were made in the top inside facing wall of the saddlebag, allowing for the cabling to exit near the top of the right rear shock. This was one hole for the power leads, one hole for the control panel, rear passenger connection, and the stereo speaker leads, one hole for the antenna feedline, and one hole for the iPod cable. I sealed all these with black RTV once the wiring was installed. I also put most of this external wiring through some black nylon webbing tubing for abrasion protection.
I programmed most of my frequencies I'll be using before hand, off the motorcycle, where I could sit in a recliner and punch and twist to my comfort. My fingers got numb several times, and I had to take short breaks from programming to do something else. I think all in all it took about 2-3 hours to program around 150 memories with alpha numeric tags on 99% of them. Programming software would be nice, but this is not something I fault Yaesu for. They never suggested or said that this radio would be software programmable, so I would be a moron to deduct points from it due to this reason. I did not find the method of programming difficult once learned. I can only assume that the operators who had trouble programming the radio will usually have trouble following directions for other things as well. The directions are clear and consice, as well as accurate. No, it is not as easy to program as my Kenwood equipment, but once the procedure is learned, it is only about a 3 on the 1-10 cumbersome scale. Remember that not long ago we had dip switches and maybe 10 memories, and you'll be thankful that the programming of this radio is as good as it is.
The radio has some wonderful features for motorcycle operation. First is the ability to act as an intercom. The wife has been wanting an intercom while on the bike since we got it last year. To use this, I purchased a MEK-M10 microphone jack that mounts to the control panel, and two CT-M11 cables. I also purchased two of the Chatterbox CB50OFHS hard wired microphones with stereo earphones for our open face helmets (CB50FFHS for a full-face helmet), and two Chatterbox CB50HSEX extension curly cords. I cut off the male end of the CB50HSEX extension cords, and wired these to the CT-M11 cables, using a male and female Neutrik XLR connector pair for the wife, and just shortening the cord and soldering direct for my front adaptor to the control panel of the FTM-10R. This is due to the fact that the wife's cable terminates on the RF deck itself, in an inaccessible location in the saddlebag, while I have easy access where mine connects to the control panel up front. I also purchased a small on/off button with adhesive mounting from Pep Boys. This switch comes as a push on / push off model, but I disassembled the switch and modified it for momentary PTT operation. I discovered while wiring this mic system that indeeed the FTM10-R does NOT supply mic bias on the mic input line for use with a condenser microphone (such as what the Chatterbox units utilize). I had to use the +5V line available on the CT-M11 to supply bias for the microphones, and as such I had to use two resistors and a capacitor in circuit to bias the mic. This is a basic circuit, using a 1K current limiting resistor connected between the +5V line and the mic, a 2.2uF capacitor between the mic + and one leg of another 1K resistor, then the other leg of this resistor to the mic input line to the radio. Of course the mic - went to the ground connection on the CT-M11. The PTT also has to be "special" in that there are two "switch" leads on the CT-M11, both of which have to go through separate 390KOhm resistors to ground in order to key the radio. This is worrisome, in that any high impedance path to ground might key the radio as well, such as water intrusion to my PTT switch. I'll have to keep a close eye on this when I get caught in rain storms.
Once I had the headset and microphone situation ironed out, I discovered that the intercom works extremely well. The rider can hear me while I'm talking on the radio, the rider can hear the radio when I unkey, and the rider can hear the music after the amateur radio traffic is over (using the "AF WATCH" feature, which allows one to monitor amateur radio traffic, and revert to FM broadcast radio, AM broadcast radio, or line input upon loss of amateur radio signal). The rider is not broadcast over the air if I have the PTT engaged on my wired in microphone. I can only speculate that if I had a PTT switch wired into the rear (RF unit) CT-M11 connection, it would allow the passenger audio to be heard when engaged. As a side note, as soon as the intercom feature is enabled, the front external speakers are muted, and the audio signal heard in the earphones is summed to 2-channel mono instead of being full stereo as when the intercom is off. I can understand the need for muted speakers, but as for the mono summing, I don't know if this is a limitation or an oversight, but it is a bit of a bummer to know that I can't listen in stereo while the intercom is on. Also, one cannot simply wire only mic audio to the front or rear CT-M11 connection and use the built-in PTT button on the top of the control panel. If one attempts this, even with a microphone connected to the control panel's MEK-M10 microphone jack, the built-in microphone in the control panel will be used instead of the mic that's right next to your mouth on your helmet! I do know for a fact that when using the bluetooth adaptor and a bluetooth headset, this is not an issue. When the unit is paired to a bluetooth headset, the PTT key on the control panel activates the mic audio from the bluetooth mic. If the bluetooth mic becomes un-paired for whatever reason, after 30 seconds or so the front panel mic is again routed to the transmitter. A friend who has had the FTM-10R for a year and uses bluetooth discovered this the hard way.
I would like to point out that the Chatterbox mics that I use are extremely wonderful at cancelling noise. I can go 70 MPH and talk in a normal voice. The Nomad does have a windshield, but at 70 there is still lots of wind noise blowing around as well as motorcycle noise. Even so, I can speak in such a soft voice that I can barely hear myself talking, and that is with an open face half-helmet that doesn't cover my ears. The Chatterbox mics are just that phenomenal! Overall audio quality aside from their noise cancelling capabilities on these mics are superb as well. I run the mic gain menu option in the radio at it's lowest setting, and this works great.
Audio quality for the amateur receiver is also wonderful. It is a sensitive radio, and has good tone, using either the headphones in the helmet or the two external speakers. At highway speeds it's easy to hear speech from the speakers, and does not require full volume. Using helmet headphones requires even less volume, and the radio has the capability to drive helmet headphones to such a high level it would hurt! The radio also has the ability to tailor the frequency response in 5 different levels, with normal being pretty flat, low having much less high frequency, and high having much less bass, and the two "in betweens". I usually keep it on mid, because either side of mid sounds either too tinny or two muffled. Audio quality of music is adequate using the Yaesu speakers, as well as the Chatterbox helmet headphones. The speakers lack bass response (typical of such a small driver), and have an annoying peak around 1.5-2.5KHz. This is great for amateur radio use, but not so much for audio, tending to make electric guitars and some vocals more of a piercing screech than what it is supposed to sound. Bass response is also lacking in the chatterbox helmet headset, so I am not sure if the problem lies with the radio or the speakers and headphones, or both. I will have to hook up to some higher quality speakers to determine the answer. Regardless, the audio is much better than nothing, but not as good as a decent pair of earbuds. I wouldn't recommend earbuds though for a motorcyclist... Hearing the idiot in the car next to you might save you from being run over one day.
I have not yet purchased the bluetooth interfaces for the radio, so I cannot testify to the usefullness of that, except for the good results my friend has had with one bluetooth adaptor and a Noland built-in bluetooth unit. His audio is slightly over driven, even with the mic gain turned all the way down in the radio setting. This sometimes plays havoc with the Communication Speacialists TSU-32 CTCSS decoder on my repeater, as the low-frequency rumbling ends up interfering with it's decoder, causing him to drop out intermittently. Only disabling the CTCSS decoder fixes this. When he uses the hand mic, he does not suffer from this problem.
The radio does have the ability to store several DTMF strings in memory, and transmit these DTMF strings without having a DTMF microphone. This is handy for me since I can store a few repeater control strings in memory and recall them with only 4-5 easy button strokes. All can be done with one hand.
Having the PTT latch feature is also a good thing to use motorcycle mobile. This frees the hands and fingers for more important operations while driving and talking. I do have to watch out though, as I tend to be a very vocal person while riding if someone does a typical "I didn't see the motorcycle" maneuver while I'm talking. I don't need no pink slips from any OOs! This brings me to another point, and that is that using the VOX is a pretty useless thing while motorcycling, regardless of how well the VOX circuit works. I cannot for the life of me imagine how people would be upset that the VOX doesnt work too well on a noisy motorcycle. Add this to the fact that the VOX circuit waits until the channel is clear before engaging the transmitter, and it makes a pretty useless "feature" for this radio. I guess it's nice to have in case one is working simplex in a quiet environment, but I don't think that it would be too good on the motorcycle.
AM reception is weak, just like others have noticed. Do make sure the squelch is turned all the way off for AM reception though. I noticed while programming that it was not hearing any AM radio, and that there was not even any static. I opened the squelch all the way and to my suprise I could just hear the 50KW station about 25 miles from my QTH.
Overall, this radio is the near perfect solution for use on a motorcycle. It kills three birds with one stone; intercom, AM/FM stereo (with line in), and a 2M/70cm amateur radio. I guess one could even modify it and use it on GMRS (I don't know that it's type accepted for this, but I guess it's possible to do regardless). I've never been a big fan of Yaesu, but they seemed to have hit the nail on the head with this one. If I could have only one wish list to add to this radio, it would be full simultaneous APRS functionality. I could work 440MHz while beaconing on APRS from my motorcycle. That would be cool! Thanks, Yaesu!
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