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Reviews For: Icom IC-E90

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

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Review Summary For : Icom IC-E90
Reviews: 4MSRP: £199.95
Tri-band FM Transceiver

The IC-E90 multi-band handheld transceiver covers 50MHz, 144MHz and 430MHz bands and is equipped with a wide band receiver, which covers 0.495-999.990MHz in AM/FM/WFM modes. If that isn't enough, the IC-E90 comes as standard with a 1300mAH Li-Ion battery ideal for long operating periods and provides 5W output on all bands! All these great features are built into an ultra compact body, measuring only 58x87x29mm!
Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
G7MZX Rating: 2007-09-13
Great but not perfect! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
Most of what you need to know about this rig has been said but I want to add two things that give me grief as you might want to consider these before purchasing.

Battery life: although the battery is good for three hours of transmitting, it is AWFUL for charging. It takes 15 hours to charge to full so even an overnight charge doesn't do it. Having a second battery would be ideal but that costs a bomb. There is a quick charger which apparently charges in about 2 hours but this hammers the battery pack which is not really designed to dissipate that amount of heat so drastically reduces the battery life.

Second thing is the voltage for transmission. Let's face it, 2m and 70cms are not bands where we want to listen, we use them to talk. The battery voltage at full is 8.2v but even as high as 6.6v the handset will cut out if you try to transmit. There is no warning of this on the handset display, it just cuts off. Yes, you could go down to low power but given there is no intermediate power, you drop from 5w to 0.5w. If you are sat outside a repeater station then you might be ok but otherwise such low QRP is useless with this handset.

Overall, the handset is very good, it has excellent band coverage and with readily available mods can be opened up for pretty much everything including marine, PMR etc. You'll need a much better aerial than the rubber duck that comes with it though and almost certainly an adaptor to attach an alternative. If using a PL259, I would recommend using a patch rather than an adaptor as it will be a bit straining on the aerial mount otherwise.

I am glad I bought it but am sick of the amount of time I spend charging the darned thing. Keep that in mind when considering your purchase.
PD9RAY Rating: 2007-06-07
be aware!!!!! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I used the ic-e90 for 14 months now, and i was very happy with it.
this unit generates so much heat at hi power, that it brakes down eventually.
This unit can't stand it's own produced heat.
The problem:
It lacks transmitting power on 2 mtrs.
This was repaired by the dutch agent for free (very decent, and fast, i got it back within 12 days)
The unit gets very hot when you transmit hi power (5watts) and after 1 minute of transmiiting, the unit needs about 4 or 5 minutes to cool down.( advise of the dutch agent)
Well, i'm not very happy about that,and i would absolutely not recommend it to anybody without telling about the heat problem.
It's a pitty, because the ic-e90 could be your pal for a long time.
EB2EOF Rating: 2007-01-11
IC-E90 Time Owned: more than 12 months.
good HT magnificus 6m and 4m band , poor antenna , changed w a diamond srh-536 and perfect
IZ2KWL Rating: 2006-06-28
Grat and cheap! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
One of the cheapest triband handeld availabre now(340usd in italy june 2006).
PROS (too long list, just extra features missing in most similar radios) : PRICE, 6.25 KHZ steps,50 mhz band,easy TX/RX band expansion,metal chassis,
CONS:loooong battery recharging time (16 h!!),speaker sound quality; additional lithium battery expencive (130 usd), lcd contrast,miss intermiediate output power level (3W?)