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Reviews For: Icom IC-V8

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

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Review Summary For : Icom IC-V8
Reviews: 78MSRP: 179.95
Rugged, 144 Mhz HT that boasts 5.5 Watts out of the box.
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
KG4WRM Rating: 2004-04-09
Still my favorite HT Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've had this radio for over a year and still think this radio represents the best value on the market. I have an aftermarket antenna and use rechargable NiMH batteries.

Earlier 5-star review posted by KG4WRM on 2003-02-01

I am a new ham and this is my first radio. Before I purchased this HT, I read all of the eham reviews and decided that this was the way to go. This radio is terrific. It is sturdy and easy to use. I can hit repeaters 60 miles away with ease. I am using the Diamond RH77CA antenna. In my truck, I use a 1/4 wave mag mount antenna on the roof. Both setups work quite well. The stock battery doesn't last long enough, so I will be getting the BP208 and using 1800 mAh NiMH batteries. In summary, this is a great radio and I highly recommend it.
KC0QXM Rating: 2004-04-04
anouther good one ! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
Great rig and handy I just need the bigger battery pack. Have not had any problem with it so far. Would also recommend this rig to any one looking for a good performing rig on a budget $115 with the holiday sale.
W4KTL Rating: 2004-03-18
Tough Radio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've had my V8 for a couple of years now. I wanted a handheld that could travel well as I fly somewhere every week and this one fit the bill perfectly. Tough case that survives well in my luggage. Only bell and whistle I miss not having is a low battery indicator. A couple of accessories that come in handy include a neat little laminated pocket programming guide from and has a 12 volt battery eliminator that has a coiled cord with a cig lighter plug. I think the V8 is a tremendous value in a handheld. One feature that I really like for my traveling is the ability to program the memory with repeater names;great feature particularly with so many repeaters using PL tones now.
KC8MFQ Rating: 2003-11-27
Excelent Single Band Rig! Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Greetings to everyone out there. The name here is Josh. I purchased my V8 in May of 2003 to replace my Grandfather's Standard C168A (ever hear of it? haha) I wanted a radio that was built to military specs, has great audio, has great features, and has a great price. The IC-V8 was the ticket and I've never regreted my purchase. If you are a new ham or just desire a simple, reliable HT, then the Icom IC-V8 is the radio for you! The only problem I've had with the rig is the fact that it tends to overheat at a faster rate than that of other HT's (when at HIGH power) like my Standard or my friend's VX-150, but this is to be expected because of the radios high output of 5.5W. Other than the little bit of overheating, I couldn't ask for more. 73's all and enjoy.

Josh, KC8MFQ
FRANKM12 Rating: 2003-11-16
Great radio! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
To All,

I bought my IC V8 mostly based on the reviews I've read here. What I wanted was a solid rig with good transmitting/receiving characteristics. There were a few problems I had with it, to be sure, but all these HTS provide a challenge in one way or another.

Someone mentioned a birdie on it and one of our repeaters in the area is in this frequency and I didn't see it on mine at all. So the birdie mentioned may have been from some other cause.

A vet friend Ham likes his IC V8, which was the biggest reason I bought it. The brotherhood didn't let me down.

I live in an RV. I'm about 25 miles from the nearest repeater. I'm receiving and transmitting reasonably with the rubber duck, though it is like any other rubber duck and leaves a lot to be desired. I transmit/receive the signal thru aluminum walls, so this isn't bad at all. The extra .5 watts of the IC V8 seems to make a difference, as compared to some 5 watt rigs.

This radio is solidly made.

I called ICOM on some issues I had. They replied within a day or so with the answers. ICOM accessories are a little pricey but this doesn't bother me as long as the radio is solid and works right.

A couple things I learned the hard way: If you goof up programming be sure to remember the rig has a CPU, and like any CPU it can be cleared and you can start over. When writing to channels with this rig, simply create many channels with the same repeater data and write the channels with whatever frequencies you need.

This is the second HT I've owned. A good friend told me that each manufacturer has his own way of programming, so what one company uses for programming may be arcane to a person while the other would not be. I've found this to be true. The way ICOM is programmed made more sense to me than other HTS. But that's different for everyone. That's why there are so many programming languages.


HR2PAC Rating: 2003-11-14
OK Rig Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This is a good startup rig for a new technician or novice ham, you cant beat it for $115 @ HRO but there are a few things that could be better. Like I said a good startup rig.
KC2MBS Rating: 2003-11-13
Great and Durable HT Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I was a little worried about the V8 after reading some of the reviews, but after receiving it and spending a couple of days on the air with it I must say that I am definitely satisfied. The rig that I received has neither of the birdies that I read about in other reviews, and seems to be trouble free on the 2m and public service bands that I monitor.

I live in an area where the closest repeaters are 20+ miles away and many are 40-60. The V8 can hit any of the "local" machines, even with the stock duck, and hits the high power machines up to 100 miles away with the 1/4wave mobile antenna. No problems with battery life either. The stock battery pack gives me 4-6 hours of reasonable use, and the BP 208 battery holder with 1800mah NIMH batts gives me 10-12 hours of regular use with no troubles. I use an RS fast charger that tops off the NIMH rechargeables in 2hrs or less, so with two sets and the stock pack I am good for 24 hours without hitting the charger.

The only issue I have with this rig is the very small display, which can be a challenge to read, but it does keep it from being too vulnerable when you are working with the radio on your belt.

I have had a number of handhelds over the years, and this one is really the most ruggedly built of them all. It ease of operation and long battery life mean that I can just use it without thinking about whether or not I am going to lose power in the middle of a long QSO.

Thumbs up to ICOM for a job well done.
SQ5EBM Rating: 2003-11-12
test it in x-tream conditions Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Well i bought my in march, since then it served well. I had to buy an extra battery (one supplied runs out of power to quick when u use 5,5w). The radio is heavy-duty made. Great audio on tx and rx. It lacks keyboard light. The mic/ear jacks got a bit broken, but fixing it is a low cost thing. The belt clip could be better made but it still works fine. The trx survied an accident. As i do some active cycling it was always with me on my left shoulder. I had an accident (with a big BMW)... left shoulder broken, but the trx is ok, not a scratch!!! ... not a single sign on it!!!.
Recently i took it at 1725m on Babia Gora Mountain, it survied -15C temperatures. Worked with no problems from the mountain top.

IT JUST WHAT I NEEDED FROM A HT!... it lacks 70cm but i just could not afford a dual HT. The price though high was nothing comparing to other HTs.

73 de SQ5ebm
Maciej "Miles" Muszalski
CFA Rating: 2003-09-15
Never Seen better Time Owned: more than 12 months.
The Icom IC-V8 is the best 2meter ham radio i've had. I usually use Kenwood or Yaesu and Motorola's and Kenwoods for commerical but the IC-V8 out goes all nearly as steardy as the GP300. It's gone for a swim and as been used in rescues in a hurrican after the XTS5000's battery died.
Went for a swim after it went in the water when the boat hit a wave and i fell out. Just had to be taken apart and dried and is still working strong. IF you want an all purpose and condition radio go got the IV-V8
KG4SMU Rating: 2003-09-09
Great HT Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
This was the very first radio I ever owned. I got it as a gift for passing my Tech Test. The IC-V8 is very easy to use and will do every thing a high dollar radio will do accpt dual band. The low price might be deciving to most operators but THE PERFORMACE IS GREAT. If you need a little more fire in the wire then build a roll up J-pole.... Mine Is OUTSTANDING WITH THIS HT...