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Author Topic: QST Review of IC7610?  (Read 5104 times)
ZS5WC
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« Reply #45 on: September 10, 2018, 04:34:06 AM »

 :)I forgot in my previous post:
There was a huge hype in ZS when the 7610 was released, and now some months later many are available on the 2nd hand market for a steal.
A friend of mine sold his and purchased a MK5 Field, another is being sold because of front end overloading (In the owner's experience.)
A local supplier has many new units on the shelf-cannot sell them as the second hand market is flooded.
Yet another was complaining of SSB talkback on the internal loudspeaker.
Quite a few complained about NB overshoot, which seems much better after the latest firmware upgrade.

Just wondering if Ham Bands only dedicated BPF's would not be better than a low Q tuned front end?.
I see the Yaesu FTDX101 offers a HIGH Q tuned front end.. Guess like the preselector of old.

73 de William
ZS4L / ZS5WC
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KX2T
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« Reply #46 on: September 10, 2018, 01:55:19 PM »

I owned the radio you now use Bill, owned it for three years and even tried the U tune units on 40 and 80 meters, although I thought the rig did a good job I constantly had to check the PA bias and really hold back on the ALC control on transmit with the FTDX3000, way too many complaints from the spectrum police here in the US since many radio's now have a spectrum display. I found the RX on the radio was low noise I thought but almost always going up to 20m and above had to run the pre amp and the same on 40m when conditions were not the best. The NR was better then most and had the least amount of echo effect on a SSB signal but the NB had the same issues of any NB on the market when the bands got busy.
I ended up buying a 7300 for a backup rig and within three months the backup radio was replacing the main radio and here were the key differences, the NB did work a little better but the NR didn't have any echo affect plus reduced the noise allot, I could run the new rig without pre amp in line and copy the signals with better signal to noise on the Icom better. Now as far as the overload issue is concerned many of the newer Icom radio's that ham's buy have an excellent manual yet not many read today, the slight use of the RF gain control on these sdr rigs is like having a continuously variable attenuation and if the so called idiot light OVH like comes on you just add  very slight amount of RF gain and your good to go, this control is nothing like these other radio in real use. Before I had this radio I would get spurs from a Cuban SW broadcast station that was on 7.335 just around dinner time and the SSB portion of the band on the 3000 had spurious images and yes buying the U tune units helped but reduced the sensitivity by as much as 10db, in the 7300 between adjusting the RF control between 6 to 9 db down would remove the OVH light and the spurs were gone but at least I an indication what was happening. I know have the 7610 which when this happens its the Digi Select which cleans up the band and losses nothing that I can tell as far as digging the weak signals out.
I cannot wait till the new Yaesu comes out with there new radio but I can tell you as of now this 101 radio is not really a true SDR, it may be some type of hybrid but with a 9Mhz IF they seem to IMO barking up the Kenwood 890 trail which is trying to bark up the long in the tooth Elecraft K3s.
BTW I have used and owned mostly Yaesu's rigs for way over 35 plus years, owned three FT1000MP's, used FT1000MP MK5's and Fields at contest stations  near me, those radio's were very good for the times they were on the market but I find it funny that your friend sold his 7610 and bought the Field but just maybe he did not feel comfortable using the newer radio and liked all the controls on the front panel which might have been a huge factor for him cause even back in the MP days ham's would bitch about getting into a menu but the Icom is soo easy its funny. BTW the latest firmware at least at my QTH in which I have allot of suburban noise the newer version firmware has seemed to nail any over shoot issue. As far as the talkback issue maybe if they would switch the monitor off when using the internal speaker might help.
Jim
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ZS5WC
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« Reply #47 on: September 10, 2018, 10:23:32 PM »

 ;)Hi Jim, thanks for your interesting and very valued feedback.
I am unfortunately very old school, and operate my Drake TR-4, and TS-940 more often than my modern rigs-Hi!..
I understand that with a bit of "driving" the IC-7300 , and 7610 will work just fine.
The FTDX-3000, great rig, and I don't have any ALC / Splatter issues. The FDTX and Expert work well together and the spectrum is clean..(As verified on an SDR..)
The trick is to run ALC, reduce power output to only just produce an ALC response from amp. (Mine is set to 17w on all bands) No excessive compression.
BTW, my Expert amp was UNDER biased, I reset bias to all 6 FETS..
Clean as a whistle!.
The talkback issue on my friends' 7610 is a curious one-the monitor is off, and the audio internally sounds like sideband without carrier, i.e. un-demodulated.
Almost like an internal supply has ripple, and the ripple is modulated by the SSB envelope.
Earthing, cables etc. are all OK. Does this into dummy load as well.
Really strange.

73 de William
ZS4L / ZS5WC
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KX2T
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« Reply #48 on: September 15, 2018, 06:20:44 AM »

Hi Bill, well back in 1975 I had up graded to a Drake TR4 from a Swan 500C. talk about old school. The only think I see as a pita with these new SDR rigs is they do seem to get spooked from being on during hi static levels like if a lightning storm comes in the area real fast, I have only seen this once but after I turned the rig off and then turned it back on the RX section didn't sound quite right, almost as if in the old days the carrier section was off. Since I always keep an SD card with all the settings loaded on the side I just do a quick up date of that file and back to normal. Mind you I always shut the station down during a lightning storm plus disconnect the antennas but we have had a few sudden storms pop up off LI sound that sometimes the weather reports never seem to catch that fast during the summer months.
I also had this issue once with the 7300 in which I did a factory reset on that radio and then re loaded the setting the way I like on the SD card, now if an old fart like myself can do it anyone can, lol. Its kind of like that fuse that was built into the old Yaesu FT101E that not many hams knew about, it would blow out during any hi voltages seen on the antenna input but many hams would neglect to look at it and complain that there Rx was dead, remove the bottom cover and check it with an ohm meter and it was in most cases open, it had taken more time to remove the cover then to repair the radios problem.
Jim
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ZS5WC
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« Reply #49 on: September 17, 2018, 10:34:08 PM »

 :)Hi Jim, I heard from several owners that the SDR rigs don't take kindly to static.
But have no first hand experience with SDR's.
I also heard some years ago that during operation Desert Storm in Iraq, the wind static from sand storms would completely disable the modern HF gear, and they had to revert to Collins gear at some of the bases..
BTW, few people realise that if you run dipoles, zepp antennas, and you don't use a voltage balun as in the case of a dipole, the potential of Static flashovers are great.
I dont use voltage baluns, but prefer choke baluns with ferrites, so at all my feedpoints I use 470K to 1M, 5W resistors in order to drain wind static away.
Those bulb type fuses worked very well in all the Yaesu rigs, and even some Kenwood Rigs employed the same. Switched on my TS-870s after a long spell and it was as if the antenna was unplugged. Traced that to a pea sized protection lamp on the bottom of the chassis.
I use the same lamp in my Homebrew Rig, as it is easier to replace a lamp than a dual gate fet.

73 de William
ZS4L / ZS5WC
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KD8MJR
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« Reply #50 on: September 21, 2018, 10:59:59 PM »

Maybe the ARRL cant afford to buy a new 7610 in order to test it? I don't think that Icom donates them to do the testing !

ARRL does not accept "donated" equipment for review.

They "blind" purchase all the gear they review.
Neither the retailer nor the manufacturer knows that ARRL has made the purchase.

And they purchase lot of expensive gear for review -- so cost isn't a driving factor.

As descried in a QST article in 2004, the testing/evaluation process is very detailed and takes quite a while.
See: http://www.qsl.net/4/4z4tl/pub/arrl_test_2004.pdf"

There are always several items "in the pipeline" -- so it can take several months before a newly released piece of gear can be acquired and reviewed.



Just to add to this, the cost of buying the equipment is not even a factor!
All a reviewer needs is seed money.

Almost all reviewers buy the equipment and then review it and box it back up and sell it on eBay or elsewhere for 95%+ of what they paid.   Considering that they probably buy from only a few select dealers they probably get a nice discount on each purchase based on the annual amount of money they spend with the seller. So when it's time to sell back they get back just about all of the money.

If young YouTube reviewers figured this out you can bet the ARRL figured it out decades ago.

73
Rob
« Last Edit: September 21, 2018, 11:02:48 PM by KD8MJR » Logged

“A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”  (Mark Twain)
KX2T
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« Reply #51 on: September 24, 2018, 09:50:54 AM »

William one thing that does help with static is proper station grounding which I would bet that allot of ham's just don't invest that much time or resources into.
BTW that Swan 500C was a little nicer than my first SSB rig which was a Heathkit HW100, the receivers were close, the Heathkit had a little less drift during warm up but those pair of sweep tubes in the 500C were almost like having a small amp in those days. All the gear before that were radio's like a HQ100 and a Knight kit T60 then a Lafayette radio HA350 ham band only receiver which had dual conversion and a 2Khz mechanical filter which I I am not mistaken was built for then by Panasonic, then you had a separate VFO for the T60 which was a real PITA so any transceiver was truly welcome in those days.
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