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Reviews For: Yaesu FT-8900R

Category: Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held)

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Review Summary For : Yaesu FT-8900R
Reviews: 171MSRP: 469.95
10M, 6M, 2M & 440Mhz Quad Band Radio with Dual Band Receive.
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
VK3FMJA Rating: 2015-01-12
Great Rig! Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I have been using thig rig for over 10 months now and it always give me the satisfaction. I had this rig during my FOUNDATION period and this rig ALWAYS amaze me. I bought another one of this rig and I put it in my other car. I will RECOMMEND this rig to any of my friends. You don't need 50 watt to go far but incase you need it it's there for you.

Earlier 5-star review posted by VK3FMJA on 2014-03-18

This is my FIRST mobile radio and with a 50 watts power behind the wheel this rig can kick arse. I have chosen the Diamond CR8900 for my antenna to match this rig and to use the FULL potential of this radio. I have tride the 2m and 70cm for a fair distance and this rig works really smooth. Another MASTERPIECE by YAESU.
KG5ARD Rating: 2014-10-27
Love this radio! Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
This was my second amateur radio with my first being a Baofeng (to make sure I liked HAM). I love this radio. It got me going in HAM and with the 50 watts on 2M it reaches out to distant repeaters. With a home brew antennae I made from a set of rabbit ear TV Antennae I talk locally from my home on the local repeater. Farthest I talked was 400 miles using connected repeaters.
KF5HDU Rating: 2013-12-02
Not bad, but not great Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Six months of use, and I am finally ready to review. I really think it is a 3.5 rated unit. Cross band is neat, but a bunch of rigs offer that now. 6m and 10m capability is neat. But the rig only offers FM, no side band here. APRS is nice through the 9 pin connector, until you realize it only happens on the primary side of the rig, and mutes your ongoing QSO every time it reports. And the FT-7900 has a better hyperlink system by far. Even if you program hyperlinks on the 8900, if you surf up or down via tuning knob or button, you still have to scroll through all of your other channels. Not efficient at all! Also, it needs two speaker out jacks. When you mount the radio in a console, you can't hear the left side audio. Had to add another jack myself for a second speaker out. Buttons are pretty flimsy too. The form factor needs to be increased in size IMHO. Too many buttons and knobs in too little space. Just hit the Internet function a couple of times by accident because you wear a size 12 ring and have fat fingers and you will know what I mean. And you will never use the front panel while wearing gloves. PERIOD! Radio functions well enough. Nice size screen, but really needs an update to LED with scrolling names or at least more characters. So here is my wish list. Separate antenna jacks, sidebar, two speaker jack, the ft-7900 hyperlink system, better APRS functionality, larger size (the size of a Spectra), larger, sturdier knobs, larger buttons, better screen functionality. Would I buy again? Nope. Probably go with Powerwerx unit and a separate HF rig. More expensive I know. But, just my opinion. 73
W4JKU Rating: 2013-11-05
Great little Radio!!!! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I just returned from a 10 Year hiatis from the hobby. I bought this radio a couple yaers ago and hooked it up in my truck in May 2013. I give this Radio a 5/5 because, it is a GREAT little radio for the price. The menus are straight forward and pretty easy to use. I have downloaded the Operators Manual onto my phone for easy reference. I have read some earlier reviews that said that the buttons were hard to find because they were not illuminated and too small, but I have learned by feel where all the buttons are and don't have a problem....even with my big digits!!! With alittle effort you can easily learn how to manually program the memories or you can get the cable & software, but I find manually to be easier & quicker. This radio can be cloned to another if you so desire & it has XRpt & APRS as well as Yaesu's WIRES System. When the Bands open up you'll have a lot of fun working 10 Meters, I have made some pretty good distant contacts with it!!! At the time of this writing, 6 Meters has not yet opened up, so can't speak for this Band. Overall Great Radio.
AC0YV Rating: 2013-01-31
Very Good Time Owned: more than 12 months.
My first new mobile and love it. If it is your first radio make sure there is 6m and 10m in your area. I do not get any 6m or 10m around here but when 10m is open 10m FM is lots of fun.
N7WR Rating: 2013-01-16
Fun Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I found an FT 8900R at a very good price and used the ADMS-2 software to program it. I need to re-do the programming though. I put in a lot of 10 meter repeaters that require PL to activate them. Unfortunately while operating mobile I am keying up multiple repeaters at the same time. Guess I will have to go with just repeaters that also encode PL. That won't solve the problem though of bringing up multiple repeaters on the same pair if they are non-PL'd

Having a lot of fun working all over the country on 10 simplex. Hope to do the same on 6 when that band is open
M6AOC Rating: 2013-01-09
Perfect Rig Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This Rig is very easy to use. I have read many reviews with people saying that it is not that easy to program. I have had no issues and the menue is straight forward. I have only had this for 1 week and so far it has been an enjoyable experience.

The rig is being used in my car with a 8900 antenna. I will update this rig later this year after I have used it a bit more.
N0FPE Rating: 2012-12-01
Not that hard to use Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I have had my 8900 abt 9 years now and its little brother the 8800 for abt 8 years. I do not find them that hard to use. If you READ the manual and learn what each item does and where it is in relation to other things its a snap to program and use. The software does make things a ton eazier for sure. Learning how to use the programmable buttons on the mic for the most used/dersiable items is a great way to put these things at your fingertips when mobile. Is this radio perfect? NO Does it do the job great for the price? YES Is it rugged and reliable? YES
would I buy another one? YES without question. while no radio can be the BEST at everything the 8900 does a pretty good job.

Earlier 5-star review posted by N0FPE on 2009-09-03

Use it as my main FM base radio and it works fine.
Earlier 5-star review posted by N0FPE on 2007-03-26

I like mine just fine.
Earlier 5-star review posted by N0FPE on 2003-11-24

I have to say...DITTO's!!!!! This radio is killer!! One thing I will say..get some kind of programming software! It is a pain to program 800 memories from the face plate.

way to go Yaesu!!

W6CAW Rating: 2012-12-01
Fantastic radio! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
G7HZZ, you need to switch to FRS radios. The 8900R is no more difficult to operate than any modern radio and considering you get 4 bands a great value.
G7HZZ Rating: 2012-12-01
User interface designed by a moron Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Almost all transceivers perform pretty well nowadays even if there are niggles that manufacturers should have avoided. The worst aspect (to me) is that user interfaces are becoming more complex, and often impenetrable. In the case of the FT08900R, the user interface was designed by a moron.

For me the FT-8900R is a step too far. It has a far too complicated setup and menu system, especially with respect to the memory organisation and operation. Buttons and knobs are too small. The display is cheap and crappy. There are also too many quirky issues with sprogs and birdies in the RX/TX.

The memory management in particular is idiotic - while Yaesu would have you believe there are memory banks for each band, this is simply not true: one single memory list is shared, but subdivided in a manner reminiscent of the geeky designs of the 1980s. It is all too easy to overwrite memories and thereby lose any semblance of structure. While software may help, this is a mobile rig: it should be easy to opeate and not require much time and effort to use it.

Several of the rig's functions are buried in menus: soem are unacceptable for a fm mobile rig: the functions for checking repeater inputs or changing CTSS tones are not immediately obvious and are buried in the heiroglyphic menus.

The buttons are too small and the touch/hold permutations are not intuitive. Setup menus have meaningless names and abbreviations and the lcd segment display looks like jibberish most of the time. The key presses that are needed to execute menu options are inconsistent. Some simple functions like beep volume are either hidden from use or - more likely - unavailable.

I bought used because it was cheaper than most new 2m/70cm rigs (the idea of having 6m/10m on board was peripheral). This pile of poop rates as the worst rig I have ever bought for ergonomics - as a transmitter / receiver it is undistinguished. I feel that IT IS NOT A GREAT RIG and would not recommend one to anyone.