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Reviews For: Yaesu FT3DR/DE

Category: Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held

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Review Summary For : Yaesu FT3DR/DE
Reviews: 44MSRP: 520.00
Dual band VHF/UHF HT with colour touch screen,C4FM, APRS, Bluetooth
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
KE7EZJ Rating: 2020-05-03
speaker, screen, audio Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
since jan 1st 2020 i sent this ht in for repair 3 times. first it was the screen went blank, second the speaker quit working and third the audio started distorting or off frequency. my opinion the radio is junk. i have had nothing but excellent ,great working radios with kenwood
K1DWZ Rating: 2020-04-26
Good radio but the audio needs improvement Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Good radio. This is the first time I have been on Fusion and find it easier to understand than the other digital modes. The disappointment on this radio is the audio from the speaker. I should be more "robust". I questioned Yaesu if they are going to improve the audio in a future firmware upgrade, but haven't heard from them . Other than that I think the radio is a good one though quite expensive.
KC8RFE Rating: 2020-01-14
APRS Problems Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I've had the APRS lockup several times in transmit with no carrier. The only way to stop it transmitting is to power off the radio or pull the battery. It doesn't respond to any button inputs. It seems random as well, I've reached out to Yaesu twice now and haven't gotten a response to the problem. The APRS decoding is also poor, it only decodes about 20% of the packets while another radio next to it decodes about 80-90%. I have an FTM400XDR in my car and APRS works well on that. Overall I'm not super impressed with the radio but the it does have a nice display. If you want an HT for APRS I'd look elsewhere.
N2HAM Rating: 2020-01-01
Beautiful Radio! Easy to use! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Awesome radio, easy to program, the audio in the speaker is a bit weak but fine. The color display is superb, just like my FTM400. Love the SW band feature but you have to go to the menu for that, but no big deal. AM receive is good and the FM is better.
The band scope works great! It does take a while to charge, but the battery lasts quite a while compared to the FT70D. I wish they would of included the cradle charger base and a faster wall charger.
The display is easy to see and read in the daylight, but even better at night!
Thanks Yaesu for an awesome handheld!

KF4HR Rating: 2019-11-08
Nice HT Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I've had my FT3DR for a couple of months, and I've owned my FT2DR for a couple of years. When comparing the receive audio between these two HT's, the FT2DR has slightly more bass, but that's to be expected considering it speaker is slightly larger. But overall the difference in receive audio between these two HT's doesn't amount to much. Both have small compromised speakers so less that perfect audio is what you get, as with many of the HT's out there, but it's audio is plenty good enough.

I haven't had any issues with the BT in my FT3DR. I pair it to a Yaesu SSM-BT10 BT Headset (actually it's an ear piece with a built-in mic). The BT setup with this device was easy and straight forward. Receive audio is what should be expected from such a small ear piece device. This BT device can be used with VOX or its PTT switch, which is a nice option.

I've also used the FT2DR and FT3DR with the Heil Handie Talkie (wired) headsets (HTH and HTHD) which both work nice.

There are some minor differences in the menu systems of the FT2DR and FT3DR. For example on the FT2DR you can cycle through the FM, ND, or VW modes. With the FT3DR the VW Mode is ignored unless you go into a Menu setting and activate it, but once activated it cycles through the Modes just the FT2DR.

The display on the FT3DR is of course color and much more pleasant to use, although I too would have liked to have seen Yaesu continue to use the larger sized FT2DR screen size.

Overall I'm very pleased with the FT3DR.
KM6LYW Rating: 2019-11-05
I'm good with it Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Great radio overall. I have an FT1XDR and an FTM400 also. The FT3DR is more
like a downsized version of the FTM-400 rather than an upgraded version of
the FT1DR. I skipped the FT2DR as the no-contrast screen was a show-stopper.

The Pro's are too many to list, so I'll just hit the obvious highlights:

Color screen I can read in the dark without glasses.
It's about 25% more energy efficient as the FT1DR.
The backlight burns 10mA per level (level 1 burns 10mA, level 6 burns 60mA).
I can actually leave the backlight on level 1 full time, and still get
better battery life than the FT1XDR. Dual receive with APRS active, Rx save
set to 200ms, GPS on, and backlight set to 1 when inactive, it burns 142mA.
Compare this to the FT1DR which burns 170mA with no backlight, and a whopping
270mA when the orange backlight comes on.
Incoming messages addressed to YOU ring the ringer, whereas on the FTM400, all
APRS messages ring (FT1 and FT3 both get this right).
LED: Green for analog, blue for digital, white for message! love it!
It has a volume knob, in addition to the concentric VFO knob!
If you know how to use an FT1XDR and/or and FTM400, you know how to use
the FT3DR.
5W/2.5/0.3W power levels. The FT1DR lowest/usless level was 0.1W iirc.

The FM broadcast wide band (90Mhz) receiver is dismal compared to the FT1XDR. It gets a
scratchy S1 where the FT1XDR gets an S5, in the same spot.

AM broadcast wide band (1Mhz) is arguably better or equal then FT1XDR.

Text entry is more like the FTM400, the biggest downside is no "clear" button,
so if you reply to a message, you have to hit backspace dozens of times
to erase, then add your reply text. This looks pretty weird in the grocery
store, pressing the backspace key as fast as you can, beeping the entire

Which brings me to the beeping. It's high or low, and the volume dial has
nothing to do with the beeping volume, unlike the FT1DR, and exactly like the

You can scan all your memories *very* fast, so long as all your stations are
FM analog. I cannot scan a mix of DN and FM memories.

The screen is harder to see outside, especially in shadows, compared
to the FT1XDR. It's not horrible, but given the fact that the FT1DR was
impossible to see in the dark (orange light made it worse), it's all together
a better screen.

The marsmod access hole is smaller, harder to remove the 000ohm resistor
to extend transmit frequency range (this does, in fact work, despite no
instructions from yaesu on this yet).

After marsmod, all your saved-to-SD card info is useless. You have to start
over on your programming (use rt-systems to read the factory-reset radio, then
cut and paste your old spreadsheet into that).

GM and BAND hardware buttons are largely a waste of space.

The speaker is possibly the worst in the HT industry. I unscrewed and removed
the lower side flap, and the audio is noticeably better, almost as good as
the FT1XDR. You lose water proofing obviously. I'm not ranting, this is just
the small form factor. It's on par with an average cell phone speaker.

I tried bluetooth on five aftermarket devices. All failed. The radio thinks
it connects, but the devices stay in pairing mode, or do nothing at all.

It burns 50mA plugged in and turned off with no battery. The backlight comes
on to tell you it's plugged in, this is on top of any charge to the battery.
Once the battery is charged, it eventually completely goes dark and shuts down.
This is only an issue if you're operating a solar battery while backpacking.

Not a real TNC on the usb port, but "ygate" can at least read the NMEA output
and send real aprs packets on to the internet/aprsis. So you can make
a read-only igate if you like. This is exactly the same as the FTM400 and
the FT1XDR.

The Tx power level isn't displayed anywhere. Either dig into the menus
or hit transmit and watch the S meter.

The power plug is wiggly in the socket, compared to the FT1XDR.

The FT1XDR power plug works, just as wiggly.

I operate the radio with an after market supply set to 10.5V. It gets hot.
it gets molten hot if you operate it at 13.8V, just like the FT1XDR.

The supplied USB cable doesn't work with RT Systems software.

the screen calibration was pretty bad on mine. yaesu replaced the screen in 2 days, plus shipping times.

I know this sounds like a negative review, but that's really all the dirt
I could dig up on this radio! Great job Yaesu! Please fix the above
and consider it absolute perfection!
K7XRT Rating: 2019-10-14
It could be better, but it works... Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Read all the available on line complaints, concerns and comments before buying, so I knew what short comings and such that may concern me.
Plugged the trigger and received mine in 3 days.

Build quality: Excellent. Rugged feeling case and perfect weight. The "hand grenade".

Color touch screen display is easy on the eyes and responsive, just wish there was a touch sensitivity control
Controls on top of the case firm and solid, virtually no play.

SMA Female antenna connector very sturdy.

Buttons well labeled and firm. PTT button could be a little bigger.

Battery attaches firmly, no play
Rubber flaps that cover the Micro SD card,Data, Ext Power and Mic/Speaker attached via screw ( they stay affixed when opened) and open with little effort, but protect the connectors well..

I can't comment on the following as I don't use them..

Bluetooth, don't need or use. Friends have good results with Jabro and in car BT.

APRS..don't use so I have no comments.

GPS.. I pretty much don't use it so it's off to conserve battery life.

Battery far as my use it's great. I have 2 = 2200mAh batteries along with the CD-41 cradle charger along with the Yaesu 10 vdc wall wart and
am getting about 3 days use in a 40/60 cycle.

I'm using RT Systems software (Win 10) and it works GREAT and as far as I'm concerned a must have, makes it a lot easier to setup.


I WISH the FT3D was the same size as the FT2D, SCREEN (BIT LARGER) and over all size, BIGGER speaker!!
Audio is lacking, though workable, definitely an issue with many. Smaller/buried ain't necessarily BETTER!

I WISH Yaesu would INCLUDE the DESKTOP CHARGING CRADLE!!! The cradle makes it a lot better charging experience and it would probably help sales.

When you buy the extra battery PLEASE INCLUDE the SPRING BELT CLIP!!! Not that cheap poor excuse piece of plastic thing.

FM Bandwidth... Wide / Narrow setting doesn't stay set to what you want no matter what I've tried.

Others will have there gripes, but these are what annoys me the most at this time.

Having been long term DMR user/programmer, System FUSION is a breath of fresh aire, from simplicity of programming (!) to audio quality...I'm loving C4FM. Haven't touched DMR in months.

IZ4UFQ Rating: 2019-10-05
Updated review: more and more issues found. Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This is an update to my first review, which you can find on the latest page of the list (it's the first in chronological order, so it's the last on the last page of the list).

Bluetooth definitely has issues. It has indeed a very poor range. Only selected headsets, the ones that have BIG antennas, can get a decent (2 meters or 6 feet) range. With small headsets, like the Plantronics Voyager or the Jabra Talk 45, you get one meter, or about 3 feet. And you can get this range only if you don't hold the radio in you hand. If you hold the radio in your hand, you will shield the BT antenna with your hand, and the range will be far less than this (about 30 cm or one foot). And if you don't shield the radio with your hand, you will probably end up shielding the headset with your hand when you reach for it to press the talk (ptt) button. Using BT on this radio is as hard as working a DX with a dummy load. You have to have the right signal path, the radio and your head must be properly aligned, your hands have to be off the radio and off the headset. That's simply unacceptable.

I have also found that this radio has a birdie (it emits a spurious signal) at 433.150. It's generated by the radio itself, and while it's not very strong, you get to receive it as an S2-S4 carrier in FM mode. It seems to be generated by the display, and you cannot make it go away by using the "clock shift" function, so you will never be able to hear a small signal on 433.150 MHz on this radio.

Up to this day, Yaesu has not released a memory management program (like it did for other radios), and when I asked about it, they said that "Currently at this time we have no programming software available from Yaesu for the FT3D, there is currently no timeframe as to when it will be released." So it may be NEVER.

All in all, my evaluation of this radio goes from 3 to 2, because now I know for sure that BT is useless, this radio has a birdie that's just inside of the 70cm ham band (and how many others birdies there are that I have not yet found?), and it has NO memory management software.

This is definitely a radio that could be great, but it has so many issues that it's really making me think that I will sell it and keep my FT1, which is exactly what I did with my FT2. For the FT2, it was the display that made me sell it immediately, it simply was not readable at all. For this radio, it's a long list of small and not-so-small issues.
EI5JZ Rating: 2019-10-05
I am happy. Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Battery life is excellent - 10 out of 10. BT and GPS drain the battery even more, of course. Screen 10 out of 10. Touch screen is very responsive. User interface 8 out of 10. Sound 6 out of 10 - sound signature can be described as ‘tinny’. Readability of speech is 8 out of 10 and possible maximal sound level is sufficient - but nothing more. Setup of Bluetooth works well. VOX works well but is very sensitive to wind noise. Audio volume coming from the Yaesu BT headset is just good enough for FM communication (but should be louder!) and is quieter with FM broadcast radio and I tried volume settings both on the radio and the headset. Even with no receive signal received there is a hum audible in the BT headset. Bluetooth connection between the radio and the BT headset works even when I carry the radio in my rucksack but if the radio and the headset are more than 3 meters (10 ft) apart, the audio signal becomes choppy. All in all I am very happy with it but because of the sound signature / loudness issue I cannot give it a 5. Other BT headsets might deliver louder audio - I didn’t try that yet.
K7LTF Rating: 2019-10-01
Good start overall, improvement is important Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Like the radio for the most part. Wish Yaesu had kept the form factor of the 2DR, since the loss of the small amount of display height and width you lose. The display readability has greatly improved though.

The Gps compass pointer I think they bombed on - Its red, or close to that, and It can be hard to see where its pointing. Would I think have been a better move to have had it be a higher contrast color, yellow - or green perhaps.

The Bluetooth like others have commented I agree with - Its not as good as a link between a smartphone or tablet, but works OK. Perhaps with a software or chip improvement that might improve the situation.

If you can get one now, would i suggest buying it , if I didn't have one already? Probably would have waited, was buying it as an early adopter a mistake (personally no). However I do feel that they could have taken some cues from kenwoods display and molded that into their own idea.

wires x works fine, GPS well not as nice as the kenwood in polish, it does work and is d passable, in other words it does what is intended to do.

I would have in reality give it a 3.5, but a 4 will have to muster in this case, it does , could use further improvement.