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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Yaesu FTM-350R with APRS Help

Reviews Summary for Yaesu FTM-350R with APRS
Yaesu FTM-350R with APRS Reviews: 67 Average rating: 3.8/5 MSRP: $780
Description: The Yaesu FTM-350R dual band mobile transceiver operates on 2 meters and 70 centimeters. And that is with a full 50 watts of reliable power on both bands. And even QRP 220 MHz (1 watt) is supported (USA version only). It has two separate receivers with dual speakers on the rear of the control head. The controls are easy to use. On the left receiver enjoy the AM, FM and stereo FM broadcast bands with extended receive: 0.5-1.7, 76-108, 108-250, 300-1000 MHz (less former cellular frequencies). The right receiver covers 108-250, 300-1000 MHz (less former cellular frequencies). Enjoy 500 memories with alpha tagging for the left band and 500 for the right band (total 1000) plus 9 DTMF memories. And the FTM-350R menu system is easy to use. There is also stereo line inputs available. This radio has a built-in TNC for APRSŪ applications. Cross-band repeat is supported. The FTM-350R is ready to accept the optional FGPS-1 internal GPS receiver-antenna. The front panel is easily remoteable with the 10 foot included cable. A 20 foot remote cable is available optionally. There is a front panel built-in microphone activates PTT transmission. Please note that the control head does not directly mount to the radio body. Supplied with: MH-48A6JA DTMF hand mic, Front panel suction type mounting bracket, DC power cable, 10 foot control panel cable, speaker cable, spare fuse and Owner's Manual.
Product is not in production.
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WZ6P Rating: 4/5 Jun 3, 2012 16:28 Send this review to a friend
Good Dual Bander with APRS  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I like this rig alot. It is very easy to use and has an excellent receiver. I have not yet had a voice qso so I can't comment on any signal reports. I purchased the optional software/hardware kit from RF Systems to handle the complex menu options. I strongly recommend this as you'll spend mucho time programming otherwise. If you like APRS, you'll be thrilled!

The construction is top notch!

Regarding the mobile mounting bracket assembly:
I applied the adhesived backed die cut plastic donut to the dash top and then mounted the suction cup to this. After about 1 day the head unit toppled over. Well, it turns out that I did realize the donut had a protective membrane on the top as well. I removed that and now the head unit has been securely attached for 3 months.

I recommend this rig!

73, Ken wz6p
W3DBB Rating: 4/5 May 25, 2012 06:07 Send this review to a friend
FM receive needs improvement  Time owned: more than 12 months
My FTM-350R is a non-APRS model. I bought it for the large display that sticks to the top of the dashboard for easy viewing. The combination of the suction cup mount with the adhesive pad underneath is holding up fine after more than a year since installation. Display parameters have several options to find the one that is right for conditions. The display is first-rate.

I use an external speaker and find the audio output amplifier in the FTM-350R to be a bit on the light side, but my second generation S-10 Blazer is fairly noisy going down the road. This might not be an issue in a quieter vehicle, but frankly the lack of receiver audio output was first noted when I was testing the transceiver in my house prior to vehicular installation. I don't notice this deficiency on any other FM HT or mobile rig I own.

I only use the rig for FM voice. On receive I find the receiver AGC to be too fast for my liking, but this may have been optimised for APRS operation. One menu choice I wish it had but alas it does not.

I use this rig mobile with a Diamond SG7500NMO antenna mounted to the luggage rack on my SUV. This antenna is a half-wave on 2 meters and two 5/8ths wave on 70 cm. I find the receive section in the FTM-350R a bit too susceptable to broadband noise like CATV system leakage. Increasing the stepped squelch setting takes out the broadband noise but also clips the desired signal. To be fair to Yaesu, I do live in a fringe area for VHF and UHF.

This is only a problem on 2 meters but part of this problem- not all of it- goes with the territory. I own a pair of Icom IC-2100H's. Their receivers are superior to that of the Yaesu FTM-350R's VHF unit when it comes to rejecting unwanted noise.

I use rejection of these types of noise as a benchmark for mobile and handheld VHF/UHF receivers. On UHF, the receiver section of the FTM-350R is devoid of intermittent white noise. The combination of the FTM-350R on 70cm with the two 5/8ths wave antenna works much better than the VHF side in this radio.

I find programming of and the menu system in this rig a snap. Yaesu spent a lot of time on ergonomics in recent years and it shows. IMO there is no need for programming software and connecting cables. I will express the caveat I have found this to be the case will all VHF/UHF mobile/handheld rigs I own, perhaps a dozen in all.

I too am a bit concerned with the protruding rotary encoders on the control head which control RX frequency independently on VHF and UHF. Having two controls is nice but the way they stick out worries me.

The included hand microphone is a cheap, Chinese-made affair that will not hold up in a vehicle. Unfortunately this microphone seems to be the standard issue Yaesu hand mic included with their transceivers for many years. The thrifting is unacceptable. On a base rig, you can get away with it but it will not hold up in a mobile environment.

Yaesu redesigned the rig with a new suction cup mount and software changes for running the APRS. This rig is now sold as the FTM-350AR. I bought my FTM-350R when HRO was closing them out with a bit of a price break. A better receiver and I could have given the FTM-350R a "5" rating.

The large display IS nice for aging eyes.

NQ5L Rating: 2/5 May 24, 2012 14:23 Send this review to a friend
Basics are good, execution poor  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had the radio in two vehicles now as well as used it as a base. It's really a good radio in most respects: large display is great, but the LED's need some work. Easy to program. APRS works fine with internal receiver option. Much to like about it.

BUT the lack of memory banks is a killer. Even their HT's give that option. My FT7800 is a better radio from a user standpoint at a lot less money.

Yaesu would do well to release the programming details and let some hackers clean up their horrible software.
W7PM Rating: 3/5 May 24, 2012 09:25 Send this review to a friend
*Updated * Okay Rig!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Like most of you experienced dual and tri-band rig owners, I've owned a dozen of so rigs over the years. So I'd say I'm very experienced in this particular category.

Yaesu made this particular radio pretty cheap feeling when it comes to the control head and knobs. The FT-350AR is NOT an inexpensive rig, so I really expected a bit more.

My biggest complaint is the really poor audio on the rig. Granted, the head's little dual speakers are going to be little 'piezoelectric-esq' sounding speakers and notably crappy ..but the main rigs speaker is just as poor and unusable.

I bought the rig to use as a base station, so obviously, mobile users will have tp purchase and install external speaker(s), but I really hadn't expected to come up with speakers for the home QTH as well.

The protruding VFO Combo knobs on either side are Yaesu's old styled, wobbly, weak and easily bendable and breakable design, with that being said, they are easy to get to, but are also most likely easily snapped off.

Display colors are just shades of tri colored LEDS, so you aren't getting anything unique here. Seriously, looks like most colors are 100% unusable and looks my my dog threw up on the display.

The contrast is horrific as well on each color choice. Don't expect to have any dark, crystal clear LCD display characters on this rig.
This wasn't radio specific, I already noticed this on the display rig over at HRO but it is something I knew I would have to deal with, as I needed three bands here.

The Radio and Head cannot be mounted together, as tghere is no option to do so. This is a remote trunk mounted radio, and 'windshield only' Head affair and nothing more.

The only way to mount the remote head is with a cheap suction cup up on a windshield. Dash mounting is out of the question unless it's glass or shiny plastic - it just won't stick if it's not perfectly flat (even with the plastic disc). There are no other options fto mount the head. I don't know many Amateur's that actually take the risk of mounting their equipment up on the windshield (in the direct sunlight) but thieves will surely love Yaesu FTM-350's for just this reason. Also, Yaesu made the suction cup, permanently screw onto the there is no removing it temporarily, without releasing the suction cup and re-wetting and re-mounting it after each trip to the store.

Other mounting options should have been explored.
For a Base QTH install, this leaves the Yaesu FT-350AR with ZERO mounting options.

Please don't get excited about this rig until you've seriously looked at one of the more established APRS/GPS rigs like an Icom or Kenwood TM-710A or something along those lines.

Pro's: Quick hyper scanning and large display, few font options. Sounds great with external speakers. Very sensitive as well.
K6DEA Rating: 5/5 Apr 11, 2012 22:06 Send this review to a friend
Yaesu FTM-350AR/AE 5 STARS!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I Purchased the FTM-350 3 1/2 months ago. Just Recently i purchased ADMS350 software and cable. First off this radio is so simple to program you could do it blind folded. The RT System software is very easy to use because you can use Microsoft excel. The radio virtually covers everything from 118-900mhz AM FM WIDE FM etc etc...Don't forget it Receives AM Broadcasts and FM radio :)

Power output is 5w/20w/50w, Strange thing Yaesu added 220 QRP 1w. I Recommend the Diamond CR320A Triband its lame on 2 meters because its only 1/4 wave but the power of the Yaesu makes up for the loss.

There is many color choices for the display which is great, from red to white and you can do mono-band while in the background it continues to scan if you set it to.

A neat feature it has is when your listening on 2m right or left if you key up on 70cm you can still receive audio on 2m or vise versa. I have not yet purchased the GPS unit or BT unit (i will very soon) to test it out and i have not even opened the APRS manual(yes that's right Yaesu has two manual on dedicated for operation and one big one for APRS).

The radio has a solid feel to it, the OEM mount is GARBAGE so purchase a lido mount for the unit.

As for Audio there is a real bunch of settings for audio, from stereo to mono,dual speaker to single speaker, front or rear or both.
The internal speakers in the head sound wonderful!
I am using 2 Uniden Bearcat ESP20 speakers for each VFO on my radio plus i have the head unit speakers enabled which gives really great sounding audio.

So, Based on my past experience with the Kenwood TMD710A ( over priced accessory ), I can say i am very happy with my purchase.

Thanks Yaesu for a Awesome product.

Good dx
KC5BGG Rating: 4/5 Mar 2, 2012 04:50 Send this review to a friend
GREAT RADIO!  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I have owned this radio for over a year now with no problems with the radio.
Display easy to read!
Programming Very easy!
Speaker in head, Good addition (set it up in programming) with proper mounting of head unit you should have no problems with this extra audio. I mounted my display on the top of my windshield.

Suction Mount. as with most every other suction mount, its needs an upgrade. I ordered the RAM Mount from RAM and I have several of these mounts, The cheaper mounts are good but the mid range to upper end mount are GREAT! mount them and forget them.

I would like to see a auto dim mode on the display.

All said this is a great radio for my applications. I have had it in two trucks and beside the mount I added an external speaker to the unit. (I always add an external speaker to all my radios)

Getting ready to order one more of these radios.
KK4EQE Rating: 5/5 Feb 12, 2012 19:37 Send this review to a friend
Sweet rig!!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Ive had no major problems so far with this mac daddy rig!! Its got pleanty of TX audio that can be adjusted through the TX menu from min-mid-high-& max audio. I love the Xband capabilities, GPS,& APRS. 8 display color settings is nice too! The mic can be plugged into the control head or the main body which is convenient.

If i would have to say anything negative about this rig, it would be no cooling fan & the GPS based altimeter. The altimeter on mine is grossly inaccurate. & the radio tends to get hot while Xbanding which is to be expected so no fan unfortunately. So i had to mount the main body on the back of my center console in the vertical position so it would stay cool. Other than that the rig is awesome!

But i think this is a very easy rig to operate & program yourself & im a spacecadet!! So some of these reviews should refer back to the users manual & understand this rig before leaving a negative review on an issue that is easly solved by correcting "Operator error".

Just to touch on one issue ive seen a few having is the audio from the speakers is low, go to the "AUDIO" menu & turn the AF audio up & set the speakers to front & rear stereo, the default setting is low. Then you'll hear them talking all around you if the main body is in the back somewere.

K4NET Rating: 4/5 Nov 17, 2011 18:51 Send this review to a friend
Pricy new but worth a resonable used price!  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
So this is my first Yaesu rig, bought it as an FTM-250R and have seen some of the issue folks had. It is kind of a pain to get used to if you dont have a programming cable. I never experienced any of the lockup issues some folks have complained about, but to be fair I DID upgrade the firmware which brings it to the same version as the AR radio and have not had any issues.

Only con is the backlight is staring to fade in some areas of the display now that is is getting colder. May be calling Yaesu to ask what this is about.

Overall, I have not had a chance to play with all the APRS features, but have used x-band repeat from my HT ot the car to a repeater many times and it work excellent.
N4MJG Rating: 5/5 Oct 23, 2011 14:08 Send this review to a friend
UpDated !  Time owned: 6 to 12 months

I just called yeasu about using on either side now they tell me it don't matter ! it great little rig, you have to read it real good ! or you will get confused like i did first time ! do take time to read them ,so you can get better understanding this rig more !

As i said before the sucky thing don't stay put for so i had to come up with an idea only is with gooseneck with small rod down to goosse neck and tight it down ! it works for me :) it sits low and not up on dash either !! i love this rig so much !! :)

AB4D Rating: 4/5 Oct 23, 2011 13:43 Send this review to a friend
Works good, but could use a few improvements  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I purchased the FTM-350R, because I wanted to experience APRS, and I needed another FM rig for a new mobile install.

The APRS on the FTM-350R works to my expectations. The looks and display are excellent, and the menus are somewhat intuitive. Once reading the manuals and after playing with the radio for a week, I didn't have to refer back to the manuals. Signal reports have been favorable.

Now the cons, which there are more than a few. First, as noted below, the APRS functioning takes priority over whatever is happening on the main VFO. I found myself missing bits of QSOs on the main VFO, because the APRS kept interrupting reception to transmit a packet burst. If you are considering a FTM-350 for APRS, and are a big FM user, this could be problematic if you try to do both at the same time.

I too also missed a few features that were standard on Yaesu's earlier offerings, such as segmenting the memory banks, and the ability to scan for CTCSS/DCS codes. I don't know why they deleted useful features from their newest transceiver. The lack of the ability to Digipeat, could also make you wish you bought something different, if you need that feature.

I also agree, the speakers on the head unit are insufficient for anything except base or stationary use. In motion, you can barely hear the QSO. External speaker(s) are a must for this one.

One reviewer noted a severe discrepancy between the audio quality/volume between Speaker A and Speaker B. I have not tried this configuration, so I cannot comment on this. However, it seems that it would be easy to install a simple in line audio amplifier to balance the audio, and that is what I will do if this is an issue for me.

Should you have to do this on a rig in this price class? No, but it could easily fix a minor annoyance, and let you concentrate more on hamming and less on the rig's short comings.

Now the wants. One of the features that put me on the fence about whether to purchase the FTM-350R, or the Kenwood DM-710, the Yaesu's direct competitor, was the ability to use something like the AV Map 6 while mobile with the transceiver. In mobile use, to visually see all the stations around you is a intriguing feature.

However, I did not want to purchase yet another full fledged GPS, especially at the AV Map's price. So I opted for the Yaesu with the remote GPS receiver. What's really needed, a stand alone display unit (like a tablet) that can store user loadable maps and can display station info on the map from the GPS data received by the FTM-350R. A group of inspiring FTM-350R uses could work on something like that, perhaps on the Android platform, since that is where the market is heading. :)

Overall, I am satisfied with the transceiver. Nobody, has mentioned the one feature the FTM-350R has over competing rigs, the bonus band. The FTM-350R also works FB on the 1.25 cm band. That was one feature which became the selling point for me. Adding a small 220 amplifier, and you will have sufficient power for that band as well.

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