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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Kenwood TS-590S Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-590S
Kenwood TS-590S Reviews: 305 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $1799.99
Description: The TS-590S marks a bold new chapter in Kenwood's proud history of manufacturing high-performance transceivers. Featuring a narrow-band Roofing Filter the TS-590S significantly reduces interference from unwanted signals that would be hidden to lesser rigs. With IF AGC based on advanced DSP technology, Kenwood has essentially redefined HF performance.
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K2PJW Rating: 5/5 Jul 1, 2013 12:53 Send this review to a friend
Kenwood has a winner  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
The ts-590 is an excellent radio.

You will be doing more operating and less digging into menus with this radio. The most frequently used items are all available on the front of the radio. The large LCD display is bright and clear.

Kenwood offers free software for complete control of the ts-590. I love sitting back in my chair and changing frequencies with the mouse wheel. The visual scan feature available with this software is quite effective.

The VFO knob on this radio is beautiful. I have no idea what it is made of but it just adds to the appeal of this radio.

I think the price is good at $1500.00. IF based DSP works well and the USB jack on the back makes firmware updates easy.

The ts-590 is just a darned nice radio. Perfect size for a small or large shack. Free computer software that does everything and more. This radio just feels right. It operates like a Kenwood, what more could anyone want?
N5KNG Rating: 5/5 Jun 30, 2013 07:02 Send this review to a friend
An awesome radio!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I bought the TS-590S to compare against an Elecraft K3 that I own. In A/B testing, using an identical antenna and power supplies, I was amazed at how close the TS-590S came to the K3 in performance, and at less than half the price! With the K3, weak signals are only slightly more intelligible than with the TS-590S, but at a cost. The sound of the K3 is a little harsher with full DSP applied. So you may be able to hear weak signals a little better with the K3, but you probably won't want to listen for as long. Testing the transmitters provides a similar experience. Using the same setup as for receive, I was told the K3 transmit signal is "punchier", so it was slightly easier for the person on the receiving end to understand me under difficult band conditions.

Using the factory audio default settings, I initially encountered the "weak" transmission signal problem that several others have noted. However, by using the Kenwood USB computer control software (ARUA 10) and my desktop computer, I was able to take care of that. This software is really nice - you can run both transmit and receive audio signals through your computer in real time, and process to your heart's content. Kind of like running your own broadcast studio! (the K3 allows you to do this from the front panel). So by adjusting the transmit audio frequency spectrum, I was able to tailor the signal to my own preference.

The Kenwood ARCP-590 rig control software is also very good - it allows you to control all of the radio functions from your PC with graphics, and even to quickly scan the bands to locate signals (providing you a no-cost band scope, if you already have a computer - can't do that with the K3, you need a panadaptor!).

The antenna tuner worked very well, every bit as fast as the K3. The notch control was useful, but not quite as effective as the notch on the K3.

If I had to summarize the main difference between the K3 and the TS-590S in a single sentence, I'd say the K3 is more of a "contest" radio, while the TS-590S is more of a "ragchewing" radio. The K3 is slightly better in transmit and receive under difficult signal conditions, but the TS-590S provides a more listenable signal - it's easier on the ears and makes for more enjoyable radio over the long haul. Well done, Kenwood!
NW8Z Rating: 5/5 Jun 8, 2013 14:45 Send this review to a friend
Best rig I've owned to date!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
What an awesome transceiver the Kenwood TS590S is.

If I can hear a station, then I have been able to work that station every time.

Most all transceivers that I have owned in the past have left me hearing one sided conversations. This is not the case with the Kenwood TS590S most times.

I love the feature set and the DSP works just great.

Two of the best features of the Kenwood TS590S are that it can be connected to my computer by way of USB. I can hear the audio from the Kenwood TS590 coming out from my computers speakers as well as receive and transmit using my computers Microphone should I wish by way of VOX, through the USB connection.

I'm sure that Kenwood will address the ALC and power out issues with future upgrades, to make this one of the best low cost rigs ever, as it's already in the top 10 on Sherwood's list.

Kenwood has a winner here all the way around. Get one you won't be sorry you did!



ZS6RJ Rating: 5/5 Jun 3, 2013 16:29 Send this review to a friend
Unbeatable value, brilliant rx  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
One must never be afraid to experiment with different brands and call a spade a spade when necessary.

After comparing and using a TS-590 against my somewhat more expensive currently-on-the-market rigs (each costing over twice as much) from a different manufacturer, I was somewhat startled to find myself digging out CW with the TS-590 that I couldn't even hear on my other two rigs. Having both my previous rigs shown up by the TS-590 RX was an eye-opener. They're gone, and more than paid for the two TS-590's I now own. And I don't miss the scopes on the departed rigs in the slightest, hi - a feature that's no good anyway if the rig can't hear the station.

I would agree with some of the previous comments about TCXO's and voice recorders not being standard. For the cost of the logistics involved in purchasing and moving those silly little accessory boxes around the world, they could have probably built in both features as standard on a mass production scale for around 30 bucks more, which would probably not have affected any potential buyers decision to purchase.

But that aside, bottom line for me - the TS-590's are simple rigs, very well built, outstanding receiver performance at a brilliant price. Great size for dxpedition work too.

The price saving over some of the higher-end offerings can also add some serious metalwork to the top of your tower, where it really counts.

73, Roger, ZS6RJ
WA3HVR Rating: 5/5 May 10, 2013 11:42 Send this review to a friend
Very happy  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I replaced my IC-7000 with the 590 since I only operate from home and, while the 7000 is very good, it has a poor computer interface and its receiver selectivity and dynamic range do not suit it well for fixed station use. So, even at the expense of 2 meters and 70 cm that the 7000 had, I am delighted with the very tight front end of the 590 and its superb receive audio made even better with Kenwood's control software which allows you to customize receive and\or xmit EQ and save that to the radio. You can also save all menu settings to your PC. My other rig is a Flex 5000a which is the best radio I have ever used. However, the 590 is a fraction of the price of the Flex with a good PC to run it. The tuner in the 590 is amazing and even tunes my g5rv on the 60 meter band. Also, I really like the dsp filtering and noise reduction.Oh, by the way, definitely get the voice guide and the tcxo which should not be options as they are. Icom included these at no cost in the 7000, so Kenwood should have too. That aside, the 590 will be in my shack a long time.
KB8TL Rating: 4/5 Apr 30, 2013 11:38 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic receiver, QSK not so great  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Except for the physically noisy T/R relay, I really like the rig, it has a great receiver for digging out the weak ones. Operating QSK CW is an issue though as the radio sounds like a sewing machine running during full or near full break-in CW with the T/R relay clacking, even with headphones on. The TS-570 I had was near dead quiet, this radio did not inherit that admirable characteristic from the 570.
KB4OIF Rating: 5/5 Apr 26, 2013 13:54 Send this review to a friend
Outstanding rig!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Been using Kenwood HF radio's since 1985. The 590 has some amazing features compared to my 480HX and is out of this world compared to my original rig. TS-440S. The DSP feature is great. All I can say about the rig is WOW.
ZS6RJ Rating: 5/5 Apr 17, 2013 00:35 Send this review to a friend
Excellent rig for the price  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've had one for 2 months now. For the price, nothing better. Just ordered a second one, and these two are going to be the go-to rigs for Dxpeditions here in Africa. Excellent on CW, SNR really good.

73, Roger, ZS6RJ
M0ZCM Rating: 5/5 Apr 14, 2013 07:21 Send this review to a friend
Excellent  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
After reading numerous reviews I decided to upgrade from a FT450D to this rig and I have not been disappointed.
The receiver on the radio is first class and I am delighted to see how the noise reduction settings on this radio take the fatigue out of long operating periods.
Whilst it is still early days for me and this rig, I am sure it will be in the shack for years to come.
KB5PQL Rating: 4/5 Apr 8, 2013 17:00 Send this review to a friend
Good Rig  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
The receiver on this radio is equal to my Icom 7700 after it's properly adjusted. All of the positive points that others have said about this radio are correct. However, this review is about the SSB relatively low power output problem compared to other radios. Mine came with low PEP and average power levels (according to different meters)so back it went to the Kenwood repair center. It arrived back to me with excellent output power (over 100w) on all bands and the average level is now up there with my TS-850S. Kenwood knows about the problem because they were able to fix mine. So far, ALC looks good and all watts are accounted for. The only reason it gets a "4" is because I had to spend $60 for shipping and insurance. The radio is now doing what it's supposed to and it seems to be doing it well. I've even thought about getting rid of all my other radios and keep this one. Yep, It's that good. Receiver is very pleasant to my ears and the Transmitter is now biting hard. Good Luck!
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