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Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | ICOM IC-7600 Help

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N4KZ  Rating: 5/5 Jul 25, 2013 13:53  Send this review to a friend!
Nice improvement over my Pro 3  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Four months ago I found a new home for my beloved Icom IC-756 Pro III and replaced it with a new IC-7600. The longer I have my 7600, the more I like it. I'm not one to subscribe to the thought that rigs live or die by their front-end numbers alone. Good specs are important, yes, but I like considering the whole package and not just front-end specs. As a whole package, the IC-7600 excels. If you are a diehard contester, than perhaps other transceivers would be a better fit for you. But for me, a casual contester at best, and mainly a DX chaser and ragchewer, the 7600 is an excellent fit. The rig presents itself very well on my desk. For a while, I had my Pro III and a Kenwood TS-590 in my shack at the same time. The Kenwood often beat the Pro III in front end selectivity (as you would expect) and its noise blanker was far superior. But the race between the 7600 and TS-590 is quite different. On SSB, these two rigs run neck and neck in the front-end selectivity race. And the Icom's noise blanker is even better than the 590's. The Kenwood NB eliminates line noise but presents digital artifacts while the 7600's NB presents far fewer digital artifacts. Considering I've had major line noise issues for a while now, I find myself using the 7600 far more than the 590. On CW, the two run practically neck and neck in all but the most demanding situations -- a major contest with strong CW signals practically piled up on one another. Then the TS-590 has the advantage on its down conversion bands. But I still prefer the way CW sounds on the Icom. It's just more pleasing to the ear. And when you consider the other 7600 features -- Dual Watch, a terrific bandscope, built-in RTTY and PSK transmit and receive, excellent SSB audio and a quiet receiver, well, I go for the 7600. Yes, it cost much more than my 590 but gives me the features I want. One last thought. I like testing a rig's ability to dig out weak signals down in the noise -- on 6 or 10 meters. The TS-590 is excellent at pulling out those weak signals just as a band is going out but the IC-7600 is even better. Throw in preamp No. 2 and play with the noise reduction and I can usually make a signal otherwise too weak to copy quite readable on my 7600. I researched new rigs for more than a year before pulling the trigger on the 7600. In the end, my decision was right on target. 
Product is in production.
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