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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - not QRP <5W | Kenwood TS-180S Help

Reviews Summary for Kenwood TS-180S
Kenwood TS-180S Reviews: 25 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $1250.80 USD
Description: An all solid state transciever.
Product is not in production.
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N6KYS Rating: 5/5 Nov 19, 2007 11:04 Send this review to a friend
Excellent!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I loved owning this rig. It was outstanding for its day, and would be a good, reliable rig to use today. Obviously, it won't have the intermod supression and DSP that modern rigs have....meaning don't get into a bidding war on ebay for one, unless you're a collector. That said.....this was definitely one of Kenwood's success stories.
HB9FBJ Rating: 5/5 Oct 27, 2007 08:09 Send this review to a friend
Solid rig  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Selective, quiet, nice mellow sound on both Rx and Tx (w/ MC-50). No bells & whitles but a solid performer. If you find one in a good shape and like this kind of "vintage" radios, buy it. You will not regret.
W0DKM Rating: 5/5 Oct 27, 2006 06:49 Send this review to a friend
Classic  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I found my ts180s on ebay. I had never used or even seen one. I have and use older kenwoods 520, 530, 570, 820, 830, 870. All great rigs and easy to use. The 180 is as good as any of these. I have yet to learn the memory items. thats a bit confusing. Mine is 100% working wise, and most of the time, gets through pileups.
For a new ham, this would be a good first rig.
The Drive is the only adjustment needed when changing bands. It matches the rigs mixer coils with the antenna used.
Tons of output 150-200 watts depending on the band.
I had a KB1 tuning knob, much better then the OE knob.
The only problem I have found is that the ALC meter starts losing its swing during prolonged transmit. But I never lose the output. There is a fix for this common problem, but I dont care, if she keep putting out.

Great $200-300.00 rig
FORMER_K0PD Rating: 5/5 Oct 1, 2006 18:59 Send this review to a friend
Really Enjoy My 180..  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Bought this radio on E bay a few month's back with out a mic or manual. I wired my old reliable Shure 444D for it, and ordered a copy of manual. The audio report's have been really good and i find my self using the radio as much if not more than my two current yaesu's a 990 and 900.There is some drift for the first 30 minute's or so but afterward's quite solid. I find the recieve to be nothing short of excellent and as other's have said it is quite forward in operating.I plan to keep it for quite awhile as i just find it fun to use and remind's one of a more simpler time. My advice is if you can and the word is can find one that is clean and in excellent working condition buy it and then set back and enjoy....
KE4ZHN Rating: 5/5 Apr 8, 2006 19:31 Send this review to a friend
Good solid workhorse rig  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I owned one of these when I first got my general ticket. I liked it alot, a good solid radio that performed well. The only reason I sold it was to get a rig with general coverage receive and all modes. For a no frills ragchew rig this ones a good radio for the money. This is an ideal radio for a new ham or someone on a budget. The only thing I can say I didnt care for was the fact that it lacked a 10hz display but thats not a big deal. Its not the latest fancy rig but it will hold its own even on a crowded band.
NF2C Rating: 5/5 Oct 12, 2005 15:55 Send this review to a friend
SUPER Rig, Often Overlooked  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this 180S for about 2 years now and let me tell you it is well worth the money....Notice there are not all that many "for sale"...Rig gets great audio reports and is a pleasure to operate....My primary rig is an 830S, so I picked this up to give solid state a try....Have not used the 830 in over 6 months...I do recommend getting the optional filters and the SP-180 and VFO-180 are nice additions...Hard to find the AT-180 but can do without till I run into one...I have no WARC bands, but can go to the 830 if that is my urge.....New or old ham, I feel you will enjoy this rig, it is most definitely a lot of bang for the buck.....Also there are NO MENUS to decipher on this oldie but goodie......If you get the chance, give the 180S a whirl...Good Luck & 73, Chris NF2C
N7IC Rating: 5/5 Mar 26, 2004 05:58 Send this review to a friend
what more do you need?  Time owned: more than 12 months
When I first go my license I would operate field day with our club. Our CW tent always had one of these 180S rigs. It performed quite well. I bought a used one in the mid 90's. I must say, this is one tough radio. I took this thing everywhere. It always accompanied me on my camping trips. Until I bought a TS-940S a couple years later, it was my main station rig as well.

The radio is very simple and straight forward to use. I never noticed any drifting problems on warm up as others have mentioned, I guess I got lucky. Clean CW and good SSB reports.

If you want to get your feet wet in HF or need a back up rig, consider this tough and durable rig.
KN3ZAN Rating: 5/5 May 4, 2003 07:57 Send this review to a friend
Very good radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased my TS-180S back when it was introduced by Kenwood along with all of the optional accessories for it including the TL922A amplifier. I do not have the WARC bands installed but I do have the WARC band kit that was offered at one time. Just never got around to installing it. I have found that the receiver is very sensitive compared to other radios in its class. My radio drifts a little but after a short warm up period the radio is fine. I only had one problem and that was with the internal VFO. I found an intermittent connection on the VFO PC board that showed up after the second day of ownership. A quick fix with the soldering iron took care of the problem. Other than changing the battery on a regular interval, I have not had any problems with the radio or any of the matching accessories since taking them out of the box. The radio is in excellent condition and I have no reason to get rid of it. It has served me well over the years. There is some information about the TS-180 that was printed in the now defunct Trio Kenwood newsletter that might be of some interest to owners.
KC0JCA Rating: 5/5 May 3, 2003 23:11 Send this review to a friend
Quite a Gem!  Time owned: more than 12 months
The Kenwood TS-180S was my first HF Rig I purchased after upgrading (350$)at a used rig shop. When I powered up for the first time I was amazed at the performance of this little rig. Mine came with a digital readout, but no WARC bands. All reports on SSB were excellent, and I sounded very well to the other stations. I would highly reccomend this radio to the beggining ham, because it is both a easy to use rig, with many features of a competition rig. The only bad thing I found so far, was that It would drift for a little while as the radio warms up, but other than that, an excellent find.
VE3OU Rating: 5/5 Feb 14, 2003 12:25 Send this review to a friend
Excellent older Transceiver  Time owned: more than 12 months
Purchased the TS-180S used in 1990 from a local amateur. Added the 500 HZ filter, and aside from cleaning the controls, and bandswitch periodically it performs like a trooper. Had some drift and tightened down all the circuit board mountings, and that seemed to cure it.
Also found the protection circuit to be too sensitive to swr, so I "adjusted the bottom side controls" to back it off, added a fan (12v) to draw air through the rig, and it consistantly gives me 120 w. output, and runs cool.
The receiver seems very impervious to strong nearby signals, and I never need the attentuator.
It certainly has a better rx than the R4B it replaced, and aside from the warc bands, and DSP there is no need to replace it. It has features like AGC off, quick simple memories for working DX off freq. and a good range RIT.
I can't justify buying a new rig at present, the CW is clean, and has easily (no menus) adjustable front panel controls.
Until it craps out, its the main rig in my shack!
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