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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur (inc. HF+6M+VHF models) | Yaesu FT-817 ND Help


Reviews Summary for Yaesu FT-817 ND
Yaesu FT-817 ND Reviews: 96 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $599.00
Description: HF/VHF/UHF 5 Watt All Mode Transceiver - operating 160 M - 7 CM with VHF/UHF portable antenna
Product is in production.
More info: http://tinyurl.com/2nshbw
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You can write your own review of the Yaesu FT-817 ND.

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AI4WC Rating: 5/5 Dec 24, 2013 07:22 Send this review to a friend
It's a jewel!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've had this radio about 6 weeks (I've wanted one for years). I also have a Yaesu FT-897 and an FT-950. so the menus were familiar. The biggest thing I noticed was the very quiet but at the same time, very sensitive receiver. It is GREAT! I am apartment-bound and must use a 10 meter dipole or Hamstick dipole mounted on my second floor balcony, so I can't expect too much on 5 watts, but during the recent 10 meter contest, I made a voice contact with Chihuahua, Mexico, 1300+ miles away. It has increased my interest and respect for low power operation. In addition to my Kenwood TS-130 and matching AT-130 tuner, what more can I want (except for my own antenna farm)? :o) It will be with me on my future travels, coupled with my Miracle Whip antenna.
 
KJ4DGE Rating: 5/5 Dec 24, 2013 04:17 Send this review to a friend
Great radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I will not go into a lot of tech details here as others who have this rig either like it or compare it to something it was not meant to be compared to. It is a QRP radio and as such it does a fine job on all bands and all modes. Like any other radio a antenna that is suited for the band is needed to make it shine. don't be fooled by the 5 watts, I kicked my signal down the road 900 miles on 6 meters so it can do the job on HF I am sure. I only had a tech ticket when I had the radio. Wish I still had the little wonder box, but as we all know, food on the table will trump radio's any day of the week. you cannot go wrong with a dusk to daylight rig such as this one, and for the size, truly amazing!
 
KB1GMX Rating: 4/5 Dec 23, 2013 15:03 Send this review to a friend
handy and does much  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Got mine used over a month ago and have had a blast taking it around with me.

I rate it a 4 because it could have a better receiver in the overload department plus the manual is awkward.

1)It is a small radio.
2)The audio quality is very good (using an replacement speaker..
3)The selectivity of this radio is not as good as my TT Eagle. The sensitivity is good. The selectivity is limited by the installed filters and the up conversion first filter.
4)The battery life is ok. This radio will only output 2.5 watts with the internal battery pack
Manual says it shouldn't and its not lying. An external battery pack such as a AGM 7AH or LIon battery is highly advised. This is the one way to output 5 watts for any length of time. I've use the internal pack with Alkaline cells for ops and they don't last long. The RX sucks down about.3A
which is high for a portable set.
5)The IM rejection capabilities of this radio
depends on the user using the IPO(preamp) and ATT carefully. For its size and price its decent.
6)The AM broadcast band is handy.
7) The radio was tested on 6, 2 and 440.
Sensitivity was good and with a reasonable antenna very useful. Compares to all of my 6M radios for sensitivity.
8) I tested this radio on 2 meters and can tell you it works well for only 5W using a Arrow OSJ146/440 as the Antenna on FM and beams for SSB.
9)I worked three states on 40 meters mobile.
10) The Collins SSB filter has soft skirts but can be replaced with a better model.
11)The Collins filter for CW does make a difference in the performance of the radio.
12) This radio has a small display and I need my glasses to read it. For its size its ok and the menu option of large frequency digits help.
13)Understand that this is a QRP rig and not a
100W Tentec Eagle
14)I have not bothered with the Miracle Whip antenna as its a electrically short antenna and
very poor below 2M. Minimally is needs a counterpoise to load against. The 40M whip on
the truck is only 7ft and its made more than few contacts at 5W SSB. Serious fun begins with a
decent antenna (dipole or EFHW).
15)A tuner is a serious consideration for this radio for portable ops. The Electraft T1 was used with this radio and it is a great companion tuner
16)All in all this radio was way better than my initial first glance. When you add the price of the filters,the tuner, portable antenna system, the 2500mah battery pack, you have a very portable all band radio.
18 When connected to my PAR EF40/20/10 up at 30ft and running 5W I had a lot of SSB fun and world wide contacts.

In general for a compact low power transceiver aimed for portable use its a useful and fun radio.
There are compromises in the design and its fairly old tech radio but it functions well enough and the frequency agility is a hugely useful feature.

Perfect no, a match to many larger and more power hungry base station radios no, but still useful and fun. There are very few radios that offer as much as it does in the same space.


Allison
 
OZ1CQQ Rating: 5/5 Oct 4, 2013 10:32 Send this review to a friend
i love it :-)  Time owned: more than 12 months
I love this little gem.
Forget all the details this is wonderfull qrp station.
 
MM0IMC Rating: 5/5 Sep 21, 2013 13:23 Send this review to a friend
Great Rig Yaesu, Don't Change a Thing!!!   Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Great rig! Yaesu, please don't change a thing about this radio!
 
MM0IMC Rating: 5/5 Sep 21, 2013 13:23 Send this review to a friend
Great QRP Rig!   Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've had mine about 6 weeks now and have made contacts into the Eastern U.S. on just 5W SSB on both 40m and 20m. This was using a simple homemade wire inverted-V fan dipole up about 23 feet on a fibreglass fishing pole.

I've also had inter-G contacts on 500mW too!
 
KATEKEBO Rating: 5/5 Mar 13, 2013 09:52 Send this review to a friend
Best portable HF rig available  Time owned: more than 12 months
The FT-817ND has been reviewed so many times that it's hard to add anything new. So I will be brief and to the point:

After using many other portable QRP rigs side-by-side with the FT-817ND I can attest that no other radio beats the little Yeasu in terms of flexibility, versatility and overall performance. Other radios may shine in one area or another, but none is an overall champion like the FT-817. If you need a highly portable, self-contained, reliable and versatile radio for backpacking, camping, pedestrian operations or travel, there is simply no contest.

That said, the FT-817ND does have some limitations:

1) The only really serious shortcoming is power consumption, especially on receive. At nearly half-ampere, it runs through the internal batteries with abandonment. An external power source (substantial battery or power supply) is a must if you want to operate for more that an hour or so.

2) The radio has other, minor quirks:

- CW selectivity could be better.
- The screen is small. It is a small radio.
- The menu operation is complex. But this is because the radio includes an incredible amount of options and functions in a small package. It is not a radio for the technically-challenged, those who are too lazy to read and understand a manual, or those think that 1960's technology was the best.

But the good things easily outweigh the shortcomings.

There are other radios that may be a better option if you look exclusively for a very specific thing, like dedicated CW rig, something extremely simple and easy to use, or something that will consume less power. But even if these radios surpass the FT-817 in one or two specific performance areas, they can't match the other 10+ advantages that the FT-817 has. The only way to match and beat the FT-817 is to use a full-size mobile / base rig, or to carry several portable radios.

 
N6AIR Rating: 5/5 Jan 15, 2013 17:55 Send this review to a friend
Very happy with it  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've been a ham since the mid 1960's and I've had quite a few radios, mostly Kenwoods.

I'm very impressed with the FT-817ND.

The audio quality, the sensitivity and the selectivity are all superior to the SG2020.

The menus were a pain at first but I'm used to them now. It just takes time.

I love the small size and light weight.

I hesitated a long time before I bought it because I was wondering how limiting five watts would be. It's turned out to be a real education for me.

If I hear a station that's moderately strong, the chances are excellent that they will hear me with Q5 copy with my five watts. If the station sounds good and strong, the chances are better than average that they'll be able to hear me with half a watt. With 2.5 watts running mobile using a Hamstick, I'm not as strong as the other stations but more often than not I can make contact with the stations I hear.

I love this little radio. Though you have to wade through menus to find them, it has numerous features.

Here are some criticisms:

1. The rf attenuator isn't very effective and cutting out white noise like my old Kenwoods.

2. If you want to program frequencies with a computer, a Mac won't work.

3. The internal battery is something you'll want to replace. It lasts about 10 minutes.

I've very glad I took the plunge and bought this radio. It's a little marvel.

 
SAPPHIRE Rating: 5/5 Dec 30, 2012 06:41 Send this review to a friend
A magic box  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I bought last version.
Very good, better performance of many rtx.
A magic box!
 
WD4ELG Rating: 5/5 Oct 20, 2012 22:12 Send this review to a friend
Updated review, Oct 2012  Time owned: more than 12 months
What's not to love about this rig?

Let me tell you about versatility. I have two of these. Here's what I have accomplished:

1. Mobile DX in my car with 500 mW to 1500 miles out
2. Base station DX, busting through the Clipperton DXPedition.
3. On travel from hotels, working DX and stateside.
4. Digital modes: JT65, PSK31
5. LEO satellites, both FM and x-band CW/SSB.
6. Aircraft scanner
7. Police scanner
8. Field day
9. FM repeater work

I love this rig!

**************************************************
PREVIOUS REVIEW:

I travel a lot, so my goal was to obtain a small, very portable rig loaded with features which I could use from the road.

I am a die-hard Kenwood fan - TS520S, TS570D, TS480SAT. So I was not sure what to expect with Yaesu. And this would be my first truly QRP portable rig. Some investigation and tinkering down at AES Radio Supply in Orlando (thanks to Eddie Vallejo, KD4RAZ) helped me to finalize my decision, and I have enjoyed EVERY MINUTE of this rig since I picked it up over the holidays in December of 2007.

I use it with an Elecraft QRP-ATU, just for insurance/protection of the rig's finals. I also have the SignaLink USB and Ham Radio Deluxe for PC control with digital modes.

My antennas at home are dipoles and verticals. On the road, I use Par EndFed half waves. In my car, I use HamSticks.

I have had great QRP DX success to Europe and South America. The rig is very easy to travel with. The menus are not hard to get used to, if you use the rig often. The digital modes are a snap to use also.

While it does not have an internal antenna tuner, the Elecraft ATU is easy to use and affordable.

While it does not cover the NOAA weather bands, there are many alternatives for receiving weather alerts in real time (SMS text messages to cell phone, etc.)

While others have noted the short battery life, I bypassed that and got the MFJ FT817 PS which works perfectly.

SUMMARY: The radio is PACKED with features, and the receiver is OUTSTANDING.

FEATURES: 5
PRICE: 5
RECEIVER: 5
ERGONOMICS: 5
EASE OF USE/MENUS: 5

For anyone interested in finding out more, feel free to contact me (wd4elg@arrl.net). I strongly encourage current and potential owners to participate in the YAHOO group discussion on this rig. That answered so many questions for me and helped me make my decision.
 
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