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Author Topic: Quality rig prices  (Read 3005 times)

Posts: 1

« on: August 24, 2004, 08:22:30 PM »

I'm a fairly new ham, use a Kenwood TS930S, primarily interested in CW and HF digital modes. My present rig is good but almost 20 years old. I'm looking to upgrade to a more curent rig and could put about $2000-$2200 into it.

I have looked at current radios like the 1000MP Mark V, 756 ProII, & Kenwood 2000 which are all in the price range. But then I see rigs like the Icom 775 and Kenwood TS 950SDX which originally sold for $4000+. Used pricing brings them into my ballpark.

The question is, why were the older units originally so much more expensive? Have prices dropped that much or have the features and quality dropped.

Everyone raves about the Yaseu 1000D, but I can't see spending $2000 on a 10 year old radio with 10 year old technology. Yet even used, it sells for about the same as a brand new, state of the art Mark V.


Posts: 21837

« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2004, 10:13:57 PM »

I can't comment on every rig in the world, because I don't own them all; but in general, here's a basic truth:

Value doesn't set anything's price, the market does.

So, when you see rigs going for whatever they go for, that's only because somebody was willing to pay that price.  It really doesn't mean much.

For $2000 or so, personally I'd spend $1500 on more antennas and go for a $500 used rig.  But if you already have the ultimate antenna farm and don't need to invest there at all, then if you wait a little while longer, you might find Ten Tec Orions going for $2200 or so fairly soon, and that would be a good deal!

(Not a plug, I don't even own an Orion, but having used two of them, I'm pretty impressed.)


Posts: 319

« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2004, 07:45:19 PM »

  The Yaesu FT1000D may be a ten year old design but it was available new up until last year. Most likely the run was finished aroun 2001 but having used one and making side by side comparisons between that rig and my omni 6 + I can tell you that its one of Yaesu's finest rigs. As a used radio around $2K, there is simply nothing better to be had out there if you prefer a general coverage RX.

  I was very impressed and pleased with its functionality and design plus it worked good too! Radio doesnt always get better because "new radios" come out, heck some of the best rxs came out years ago and their performance couldnt be beat by the stuff offered even today.  

  The real issue with buying older equipment are the service concerns. Will x brand service or some 3rd party company be able to fix the rig should it fail?

  The FT1000D didnt have many issues so I would suspect it will last a long time. But as we know, as time goes on, older rigs once considered reliable are developing issues just due to their age ie. the TS-440 potting compound issue (not all but some.)  Things to keep in mind.. Richy N2ZD

Posts: 1014

« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2004, 02:25:19 PM »

Newer doesn't always mean better.  The Kenwood TS-930S had a reputation for an excellent receiver. (I never owned one so I can't comment.)  I suspect that unless you buy the best of the best (Ten Tec Orion, IC-7800, etc...) you will find more gee whiz bells and whistles but very little improvement in the way the receiver actually performs on the air.  I agree with Steve, W2WIK/6:  keep the venerable 930 and upgrade your antennas with the money and you'll see much better results.

The FT-1000D may actually be worth considering because it was one of the first rigs with two receivers, as in two completely independent front ends.  Diversity reception can be used to eliminate or reduce selective fading.  That, plus a reputation for one really fine receiver, may make enough difference for that rig to be worth the money.

FWIW, I am not at all convinced that newer is always better.  The best of the high end rigs are definitely pushing the envelope in terms of receiver performance.  Other than that you might find that some new toys are atcually inferior to what you already have where it counts.


Posts: 352

« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2004, 10:03:30 AM »

I agree that newer definitely does not always mean better.  I would suggest looking at the reviews here and at other sites.  Don't look at the very positive or very negative ones.  Look for people who are OK with the radio but not blown away.  Then look for trends to find the weaknesses that might be apparent.  Occasionally people will hate a rig because they got a lemon, but many reviews with the same problem indicates a design or manufacturing flaw.  Most people really want to think their rig is the best or the best deal.  Look for comments on the radios like "difficult in pileups", "bad intermod" or "had to send mine back for the blah blah blah problem."  Even look at comments like "they had my radio for 3 months and still didn't fix the problem".  These can all be signs of a problem with the line of radios and not just a single rig.

Hope this is of value.  73

John Pawlicki, K8AG

Posts: 12

« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2005, 01:02:36 PM »

I know you might be concerned because your radio is older, but still a good radio, the truth of it is, the only company that will service their old radio's is Ten Tec.
  I own Ten Tec and Kenwood both and have found if you have a older Kenwood their service department won't touch it. Ten Tec will service the old radio's as wella s new.

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