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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held | Kenwood TH-79A Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TH-79A
Kenwood TH-79A Reviews: 22 Average rating: 4.4/5 MSRP: $459.00
Description: Dual Band HT
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the Kenwood TH-79A.

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KA7OEI Rating: 3/5 Dec 12, 2005 12:48 Send this review to a friend
Interesting Dual-bander  Time owned: more than 12 months
This radio was given to me by a ham who was "cleaning house" and never used it. When I first got it, I turned it on and noted that while it worked, the display "garbled" frequently, so I put it away for a year or two.

More recently, I revisited this radio, did a bit of research, and finally fixed it: The "display garble" is simply a result of high resistance in the conductive rubber contact strip that connects the main board to the display module and it simply required disassembly, cleaning (with alcohol) and reassembly to fix it. - A common problem, apparently (hence my giving it a "3") Now that I have done it, it's pretty easy, but I would *never* have done it without having found detailed info. on removing the main board on the web.

I do like the radio, but find it a bit awkward to use - but I'm sure that that's a result of all my other HT's being Yaesus. One nice feature is the "EL" power setting of 50 mW tx power - which is usually more than enough when using an outdoor antenna or trying to communicate with someone just out of shouting distance.
AD5BN Rating: 5/5 Sep 21, 2003 19:33 Send this review to a friend
Great Rig  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Bought mine used and it has worked flawlessly for the entire time I have owned it. Excellent, clear display, great features like simultaneous reception while transmitting, cross-band repeater, built-in help menus - must I go on? This is one of Kenwood's marvels of all time and should have been improved upon by adding 222 MHz, CTCSS and DCS standard, and then left alone! Oh of only everyone made them like this....
KC7ZRU Rating: 5/5 May 25, 2003 02:00 Send this review to a friend
Love it!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Bought my first one 2nd hand back in '99. Works wonderfully still! Lettering has worn off the buttons - but not really missed. Used daily while at work (hospital) for both ham TX/RX and EMS/LEO RX (came w/factory MARS/CAP enabled).

Antenna mount has come loose a couple times, but nothing a screwdriver couldn't fix in short order. The part of the back case casting that holds the antenna mount once broke - but that was an easy fix. Simply ordered up a new back case from the KW parts dealer and swapped. Never had a problem since.

Just found a 2nd that was in great condition - better than my first one when I bought it. Almost hurt myself buying it so fast!

KW batteries are way too pricey though - simply gouging. 3rd party/aftermarket battery packs are availalbe and the way to go. NiMh rocks!
KE6SUS Rating: 2/5 May 24, 2003 00:27 Send this review to a friend
Easy to fail  Time owned: more than 12 months
Ergonomics are great, I love the feel of the radio.

Problems with the radio include: Fried twice when attaching to Kantronics Packet Modem. Had to regularly adjust antenna screws. Recently, display failed and became garbled, transciever still works, but challenge to figure out freq. Kenwood wants $180 to look at it, but believes it is a $20 board that I could not buy.
K3UIG Rating: 4/5 Dec 28, 2002 13:27 Send this review to a friend
Great HT, a few minor probs...  Time owned: more than 12 months
What to say that already hasn't been said.

First off I really love the performance on this HT and it seems to be unmatched as compared to any other HT I've used and I've tried a lot of them.

Pro's: Small, good audio, performs well, great all around dualbander.

Con's: I can't count the number of times the battery has fell out of the bottom of my TH-79A. I am always checking that it is still there but that can be corrected easily by buying a case for the HT. Other than that I've owned the radio for long enough that I can safely say I've had no other problems with the radio.

Looking for a good dualbander? Look no further in my opinion.
AB8IG Rating: 1/5 Dec 22, 2002 11:28 Send this review to a friend
Fragile  Time owned: more than 12 months
Out of the box, the RX audio was so low that I had to buy a speaker mike. The TX was excellent, but if I couldn't hear the other station. I had half of a rig.

Battery mounting leaves a lot to be desired. On several occasions the battery fell out of the HT while I had it on my belt.

The antenna BNC connector would come loose about every 6 mos. I would have to get a jeweler's screw driver to open the case and re-tighten the screws holding the antenna mount.

This past fall I experienced problems with the loose antenna screws, but the connection had also come loose from the PCB. While attempting to solder the antenna lead to the PCB, the ribbon cable attaching the two halves of the HT separated. After years of frustration, the HT went into the trash can (along with a stream of profanity).

It had some cool features like displaying my call sign on power up, but when I needed to communicate it was usually DOA.

Caveat emptor
PE3HMP Rating: 4/5 Jun 16, 2002 04:41 Send this review to a friend
Good radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
Well after 6 months I had some trouble with the display (strange signs on the display) send it back and got a new display.

Works great, good reception.
when using the BT9 battery case (using 1500mA NImH) they will last a day going to a ham meeting

somtimes I have contrast problems(display)have to open it and clean the VR, but hey after 5 years of using this radio at least three times a week (and one year 5 times a week in my car) what do you expect :-)
K9LDW Rating: 5/5 Mar 6, 2002 15:39 Send this review to a friend
Very flexible: Now on AO-14 satellite  Time owned: more than 12 months
Neat handheld. Most flexible dual-bander I've used.

I like it even better now that I opened up the freq's so it covers satellite range AND
can operate with headset / external mic for full duplex sat (FM only). (With an Arrow antenna it's a neat package).

Nice features: Text or frequency ID for each memory. (eg. Rpeater/club name vs freq), duplex operation across bands (2M and 432)

Gripes: Few. Loading freq's and their offsets into memory could have been made easier.

Recommendations: Larger than stock battery pack. I have a MAHA I bought from AES.
KE6YOC Rating: 5/5 Oct 3, 2001 11:32 Send this review to a friend
Good value  Time owned: more than 12 months
The thing I like about this radio is IT IS EASY TO USE and does everything a true dual bander should do. I have two - both bought used for under $200. each with accessories. With the small battery pack it is as small as I like a handheld to be, has good audio and a hot mike.
PE1RLN Rating: 5/5 Apr 4, 2001 04:07 Send this review to a friend
Great thing; work marvelous  Time owned: more than 12 months
What can I say about this wonder? Kenwood never made (and never will again I fear...) such a good transceiver to hold in your hand! Only the original antenna s#cks, but I got another from Diamond and it works great. I did the modification and can receive other signals too, but that is not the main feature. The portable just has nothing that ain't right. I have owned it for about five years and still nothing has been more worth buying than this little baby. I'll never sell it. My rating? 6/5!
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