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Reviews For: Lafayette HE30 / KT320

Category: Receivers: General Coverage

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Review Summary For : Lafayette HE30 / KT320
Reviews: 15MSRP: 87.95
Single conversation receiver with 455 kHz IF, dating from
the early/mid 1960's, covering from AM Broadcast up thru
30 MHz. Believe was made for Lafayette by Trio Kenwood.
Product is not in production
More Info: http://
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
W1HFG Rating: 2015-01-13
Huge improvement over my Heathkit AR-3 Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I acquired one of these,used, in the mid-60's. My only basis for comparison was the Heathkit AR-3 I had built. While the Lafayette couldn't compare with a Collins or the better Hallicrafters, Hammerlund, or National receivers of the day, it represented a huge step up from the AR-3, a lot of bang for the buck. I probably paid $35 for it at the time. Unfortunately my novice license had expired by the time I bought the HE-30, so I used it only for SWL'ing.
N8FVJ Rating: 2014-12-01
Ok, but....... Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I repaired this receiver for a friend. Six new caps & a quick alignment- it works. Most of the issues was the dirty contacts & especially so on the band switch.

Typical vintage lower end general coverage receiver with the top band dropping off in sensitivity. Q-multiplier does work well.

Just about any modern portable shortwave receiver with a digital readout will outperform this Lafayette. However, the HE30 is fun to look at & use on SW AM stations.
N6PJB Rating: 2014-06-09
My First Receiver Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I built this from a kit along with the Hallicrafters HT-40. Both served me well in 1963.
N4UE Rating: 2014-03-09
Love these old Trios Time Owned: more than 12 months.
To the previous poster (Grant), after testing the tubes, replace every one of the gray, coupling/bypass caps. They will be very leaky at rated voltage. I have restored dozens of these old Lafayette/Trio radios and I don't even bother to test the caps any more.

I have a HE-30 that I bought from eBay for almost nothing, because someone had painted the covers a horrible red color! Even worse, they cut a 3" square hole in one side. I TIG welded a patch and resprayed the covers.
Luckily, the chassis and glass was perfect. It looks and works like new.....

Have fun
W5XJ Rating: 2014-03-08
Just bought it at Irving Ham Fest Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I just bought mine this month at Irving, Texas hamfest for $50 with extra bag of tubes and original manual. It powers up but have not really checked it out yet. wanted to post price for others that are in the market so they'll know prices. Will report again after putting it on the air.

73 & good DX

Grant in Dallas (EM12ou)
KP4FAR Rating: 2012-08-04
Nice shortwave receiver with good stability after warmup. Time Owned: more than 12 months.
This is my first Lafayette SW receiver. I picked it up at the e place in as-is condition. After receiving it I did some minor cap replacement. All resistors checked OK. The HE 30 was realigned following the manual but still there was an issue with the sensitivity. The HE 30 was left in the shelf for a while until recently when I went after that elusive sensitivity loss. It was none other than the IF gain pot. Replacement of the 10k pot solved the problem. The 500k audio pot was found also out of range and replaced. The result is a quite sensitive receiver with now normal audio. I find it good enough for shortwave listening but it is not a dx machine. I can imagine a novice using it back in the 60s. Lafayette had it in the local stores but it was way out of my budget at that time. The Q multiplier works very well and after 40 plus years this rig still works as it should. It is very well made. I think that it is a keeper.

WB5OXQ Rating: 2011-05-07
Maybe I got lucky Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I have finished a complete alignment on my KT 320 and I am totally surprised with how well this over 40 year old receiver works. It appears to have all original tubes too. I admit it must warm up well before it stops drifting but once is does it is delightful to use. I have listened to several nets on 40 and 80 and if you know how to use the Q mustiplier and if gain with the avc off it receiver ssb as good as my TS-2000 can and with less noise. On AM it beats the new Kenwood sibling hands down. I have no plans to part with this receiver unless I would find a higher end version of the same model. It has BETTER selectivity on 80 AM that the TS 2000! Maybe I just got lucky and since mine was built from a kit I am extra lucky that the builder did such a good wiring job but did a very poor alignment. My dial is dead on freq on all bands now. I used a Motorola Service monitor that had AM and CW modes for a signal generator so I know it is accurate. I can find no fault with this radio orher than a few problems that single conversion radios have. I live 4 blocks from a high power FM broadcast tower and this radio is not bothered by it at all.
K6SDW Rating: 2007-07-12
First lv Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Well.....not exactly, but this was me first novice rcvr. Fun and challenging ~ what filtering ~ wide as a barn door, so I had to learn to "filter" in me head! Got to listen to several cw qso's at the same time!

And did I mention the freq drift?

Lot'sa fun in the 60's back then!

73 all....
W6RTW Rating: 2007-07-12
Worked Great Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I purchased the kit version of the HE-30 which was called the KT-320. This was part of my novice station along with a Knight kit T-60 in 1964. My only receiver experience prior to this was a Knight kit Star Roamer, so this was a great receiver. I made hundreds of novice QSOs and thought this receiver performed well. By today's standards, it's not a great receiver, but in 1964 it was excellent and reasonably priced for a young teen. I miss those days.
K3SUI Rating: 2007-04-03
Not a Great Receiver ... but inexpensive Time Owned: more than 12 months.
This was also my first receiver back in '61. It was microphonic, drifted and hard to tune. My transmitter was a homebrew pair of 6L6's I built from parts recovered from an old Emerson TV set. I had a lot of fun with this receiver. I NEVER used the Q multiplier and NEVER turned it off. I've one in my collection for old-times-sake.