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Reviews Categories | Receivers: General Coverage | Yaesu FRG-7 Help


Reviews Summary for Yaesu FRG-7
Yaesu FRG-7 Reviews: 44 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $300.00
Description: General Coverage Receiver
Product is not in production.
More info: http://www.crocuta.com/FRG7/index.html
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K4CMD Rating: 4/5 May 20, 2014 21:19 Send this review to a friend
Who says you can't go back?  Time owned: more than 12 months
I still remember it like it was yesterday. A 12-year-old kid, just getting interested in ham radio, the proud owner of a cheap Science Fair shortwave kit from Radio Shack, bumming around Sears with my dad one Saturday in 1977. Suddenly I spot something big and black on display near the CB radios. What is it? Well, once I discovered the "Sears FRG-7," my dad had to peel me away from it a half-hour later. Not even a teenager, I couldn't even imagine the $350 it would take to own one.

Fast-forward 36 years. Now I'm 48, got a place of my own, an Extra-Class license and a respectable little ham station. But something's been missing all these years: Even though I've been as much an SWL as a ham, I've never acquired much more than a handheld shortwave receiver. OK, my HF rig does the job, but it's not the same. What I want is that receiver whose lights and dials still shine brightly in my distant memory.

A trip to that year's local hamfest turns into the fulfillment of that dream. A few tables over from mine is a guy selling the real Yaesu version of the radio for $170. Not only is it in excellent working condition, there's not one scratch, dent or blemish on it anywhere. This thing looks like it just came out of the box.

Fast-forward another year, to today. I have probably had the FRoG on and used it more in the past year than my HF radio. This little sucker is everything I ever hoped it would be. Sure, it can't beat all the performance and features of today's radios. But who's expecting it to? It's 35 years old! That said, it does pretty darned admirably! (Sadly, its wide filtering probably would NOT do so well if the shortwave bands were as crowded with S9+40 signals as they were 10 years ago!)

I've found this radio really shines on the MW (AM broadcast) band at night. (Remember to set the jumper correctly on the antenna terminals if you're feeding the radio with coax, if you expect to hear anything.) I frequently listen to the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville like it's a local station here in Richmond. The Wadley Loop design in this radio really does keep the blasting and fading to a minimum, the radio is spot-on frequency nearly everywhere, and everything works as it should.

But lemme tell ya, friends, where this radio REALLY shines. Turn off the lights, power up the FRoG, and watch the radio cast its glow around the room. All of a sudden I'm that kid again, hunkered down over my little radio after everyone else has gone to bed, dreaming of big radios and far-away places. This radio is a time machine that Yaesu built to stand the test of time. Sorry for waxing poetic here ... but this is THE best $170 I have ever spent in this hobby. Get one while you can and let it take you back.
 
AUSSIE Rating: 5/5 May 4, 2014 04:39 Send this review to a friend
Excellent  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought a Yaesu FRG-7 in pristine condition it took me a while to learn how to tune manulally due to lots of modern receivers but have to admit i enjoy using it monitoring hf aircraft antenna Paordt active mini whip..
 
VK3YWB Rating: 5/5 May 2, 2014 22:48 Send this review to a friend
Classic Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
What can I say that others haven't already said?

Acquired mine at a garage sale in 2011 for the princely sum of $50.

Although the leaves on the i.f. board lead me to believe it had been stored in a shed, the only work it needed was the mode and band switches. These responded well to switch cleaner and have been flawless ever since.

The set is in really good condition apart from the leaves, minimal scratches, no dents. No real sign of wear and tear. It has some leds replacing bulbs that failed.

Agree with the SSB filter. 6khz does result in a bit of "monkey chatter" but otherwise a nice performer that gives ATS909 a run for it's money.

Although there is a bit more to tuning it than other sets it does become 2nd nature readily and you can quickly roam about the various bands in search of interesting stations.

I do find the gain switch has to be in the centre position (maximum) for 500 - 1600 khz otherwise there is noise but no signals.

The FRG-7 is 35 years old and still performing well, my ATS909 is in for repairs after only ten years. It seems more than certain that this radio will keep you listening to HF for the longest time
 
KYSPENTAY1 Rating: 4/5 Jan 3, 2012 11:12 Send this review to a friend
Well Proven Design  Time owned: more than 12 months
Ok, I'm not going to tell you that the FRG-7 is the greatest DX machine ever. Of course, it's not. But, I do believe it's a pretty darn good receiver. With even a modest improvement in filtering and a decent antenna, one can do some serious DXing with this radio. My only major complaint about this rig is the lack of a genuine RF gain control, which would help a lot when trying to get the necessary S/N ratio to copy weak sideband signals when noise is high. Still, there's something of a prince within this Frog.

One thing I really appreciate about the FRG-7 is its durability. I think there are only about 15 electrolytic capacitors in the thing. If you replace all those and touch up the alignment a bit, it's as good as new. Unlike many of the 1980s-era receivers that followed, the FRG-7 has almost no exotic, hard-to-find parts in it. I've never heard of any part in this radio that has a history of repeated failures. Many Frogs have gone deaf, but the culprit is almost always lighting-caused damage to the front-end FET. Very easy to remedy with a modern equivalent, like the NTE454. To me, the analog display is actually a blessing. I did purchase an external digital display for mine, but, in all honesty, I rarely use it. I think the dial drum on the Frog is plenty accurate for me in most situations.

In summary, if you're looking for a vintage shortwave receiver that will require little, if any, work done to it and does a great job of pulling in stations on all bands, I heartily recommend the Yeasu FRG-7. If you do decide to work on it(like replacing the "barn door" standard filter), you will find the FRG-7 very accommodating to your soldering iron.
 
SIERRAHOTEL Rating: 5/5 Jan 1, 2012 05:04 Send this review to a friend
A classic receiver!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I had a Sears FRG-& years ago, but sold it when I bought some other radio. I always wanted another one, and a while back, a little over a year ago, I found one on Ebay that looked good, in the pics, at least. Sadly, not only was it in poor shape due to neglect that the seller hid very well, but it was damaged in shipment due to bad packing. I started looking for another one, but I lost a lot of auctions. I got the first one going, the damage was mostly cosmetic, but the alignment is a bit off. Just before Christmas, I saw a lot of them on ebay again, and I bid on several of them, and I won not one, but two of them! The first one was very cheap, due to it being a bit rusty, and was slightly damaged due to bad packing again, but the other one looks new! It has one tiny scratch on the front panel, and that's it. The manual shows a lot of wear, but the radio itself is in amazing shape. I'm going to take the rusty one and paint the case after sanding all the rust off of it, and change the filter for improved SSB operation, and get it aligned, along with changing out the caps which seem to be ok, but a couple look a little swollen. The nice one is staying untouched, and the first one will be a parts donor for the two new ones, as it's in by far the worst shape of the three, both electronically, and cosmetically.

Pros:

Built like a tank, and amazingly, a lot of parts are still available, like the front panel switches and audio amp IC! Simple to use once you get used to it. Decent audio.

Cons:

Analog dial is "close", but you never know exactly where you are unless you hear the station say it, or it's WWV, etc. Overloads on a good antenna. SSB filtering is way too wide.

All in all, it's a really fun radio to play with, and if you accept that you have to twiddle knobs constantly, a radio that works amazingly well.
 
RAMBULLY Rating: 5/5 Dec 6, 2011 19:46 Send this review to a friend
I have been very pleased with my Yaesu-Musen radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned my frog-7 for 35 years. I bought it new in Jacksonville, Fla and it has traveled with me to 35 of the 50 states during my working as a DJ in commercial radio. This set has never let me down with it's crisp reception, clear tones and ease of operation. I am amazed how easy it picks out hard to hear stations and have had no mechanical problems
except replacement of some light bulbs and a little drifting until the set warms up. I have listened and used very expensive monitoring equipment and this Yaesu holds its own.
 
K4DSB Rating: 4/5 May 2, 2011 11:09 Send this review to a friend
Excellent General Coverage Rec.  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Obtained on eBay in the mid $100's and in excellent condition I'm impressed with the quality and performance. Not as accurate as a digital display receiver but quite usable for general coverage and SSB/CW with suprising low drift. This triple conversion receiver is very different in the tuning department than most GC receivers! It uses a WADLEY LOOP System, which uses the harmonics from a 1Mhz osc to form the local osc/mixer circuits. You tune in 1 Mhz segments and have to 'lock the loop' again if you tune into another frequency range. The receiver covers 500Khz to 29.9 Mhz and is a little broad in the IF stage..however that makes for a little better quality audio on SW broadcast stations.. ON SSB and CW it's OK... but the receiver sensitivity is VERY good..
I love this receiver and for the money is better than almost all GC receivers (of vintage age) that I have owned, Including some of my drakes
 
LW8DJI Rating: 5/5 Jan 20, 2011 16:07 Send this review to a friend
good buys  Time owned: more than 12 months
despite its age, is an excellent receiver, assembly quality is very good, all original keys and potentiometers, has little shift, it is pleasing to the ear, although a bit wide to the standards of today, is much better than the drake ssr-1 and realistic dx300-dx302
also it is a classic, the used market in your favor ... for now .... is good to buy one to save. good example of the golden age of yaesu

a pesar de los aņos que tiene , es un excelente receptor, la calidad de armado es muy buena , todas las llaves y potenciometros originales, tiene poco corrimiento, es agradable al oido, aunque un poco ancho para los estandares de hoy en dia, es mucho mejor que el drake ssr-1 y realistic dx300 - dx302
ademas ya es un clasico , el mercado usado lo favorece... por ahora.... es bueno comprar uno para guardar. buen ejemplo de la epoca dorada de yaesu
 
TERRYW Rating: 5/5 Jul 3, 2010 00:15 Send this review to a friend
Great old analog receiver  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Solid old boat anchor and a welcome addition to the collection. High-quality Japanese construction holding up well 30+ years later.

Pros:
Very sensitive
Very good sound and clarity
Selectable USB/LSB
Very good preselector
Very accurate analog tuning
Accurate analog dial reading
Handles fading distortion in AM quite well
Automatic Noise Limiter effectively reduces static bursts
Very good dial S meter
Very low noise floor
Haven't noticed any images from local powerhouses
Many mods available

Cons:
Small drift makes ECSS difficult: you'll constantly be retuning
Stock filter a bit wide, so selectivity is only fair
Tone switch isn't too useful, should have been a notch filter instead
Triple-conversion tuning could be too cumbersome for some, though I like it
Some counter-intuitive labeling, though you get used to it

If you think you'll like it, you probably will. Very reasonable resale prices, especially for what you're getting.
 
W6QT Rating: 5/5 Apr 6, 2010 18:35 Send this review to a friend
Gets High Reviews for a Reason  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
With replacement of old caps & alignment, this receiver works very well with the Wadley Loop system. It seems to be built very well and is held in high regard by radio amateurs. I'm happy to have one and use it just about every day.
 
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