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Reviews For: Kenwood TS-530S

Category: Transceivers: HF Amateur HF+6M+VHF+UHF models - non QRP <5W

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Review Summary For : Kenwood TS-530S
Reviews: 55MSRP: 800
10-160 Band HF Trancvr
Product is not in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
W0CKI Rating: 2023-05-17
Great Radio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Bought it as NOS in September of 2019. The box had been opened to install the narrow KHZ CW filter. Put back in the box and was never turned on. I was also fortunate to acquire a NOS 1.7 KHX SSB filter.
The radio is absolutely terrific to use. Fantastic receiver.Great audio on RX and TX. Easy on the ears.
I love tuning it up. Super rig for us old timers.
K4ABL Rating: 2023-05-17
Good Radio! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Several weeks ago, I bought a silent key's collection of radios and other equipment. One radio was a Kenwood TS-530S. Like most of his stuff, it was covered with dirt, and thick, yellow cigarette dust. I use a combination of Windex and 409 for badly stained radios like this one. After it was sprayed, brushed and washed clean with a water hose, it laid in the hot sun for around four hours. The next day I put the metal covers on and fired it up. It is a great radio. The receive is very quiet and the RF output is more than 100 watts. I have never used anything else except for a Kenwood TS-850SAT. It is a good radio but the receive on the 530 beats it!
KB8TL Rating: 2022-11-14
EZ to work on if necessary Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I recently acquired a TS-530S after having disposed of my TS-830S not long ago. The 530 came equipped with the YK-88CN narrow CW filter and it gives results similar to the VBT narrowed up on the TS-830S. I don't really miss much that the '830 had over this rig and it's somewhat simpler to work on. Though the gold label was pretty. :-)
N5XJT Rating: 2021-05-21
One of the best! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Update: After almost 30 yrs. I still love this wonderful rig. Rx is great, Tx is great, it's fun to use and most importantly reliability is top notch with no problems and still has full output. The VFO, AT and speaker are all Kenwood great. The TS-530 and TS-830 IMHO are among the finest radios ever built. Will I ever sell? Nope!
No DSP, menus or waterfall screen. Just a great receiver, excellent transmit audio, built for long life and minimal problems. Get the matching VFO-240 and AT-230 and you have a easy to use, reliable rig that will probably still be working well after your new one is long gone. Nuff Said!
KN4OO Rating: 2017-09-21
Enjoyable ancient radio Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I bought the TS-530s back in April at a Hamfest for $300.The Ham I rode with went ballistic. Anyway I got it home and started it up. It had a problem with the band switch, when changing bands the display would blackout. Opened the case and found the "plastic" shaft couplers were cracked so I replaced them with metal couplers and all is well. I also got it to transmit on 17 and 12 meters. It took me a while to get used to tuning the critter when I changed bands. I give it a 5/5 cause I get nothing but good reports on transmit and the receive audio is fantastic. Oh before I forget it is connected to a LDG Z-11proII which is connected to a Chameleon Emcom II Endfed!!
W7DAL Rating: 2017-07-04
Bought it new in '82 Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Paid $708 for it delivered new in Feb 1982 with YK88C and MC35S. Still in mint condition and a joy to operate. Drives an HA-14 to a KW input and continues to draw unsolicited rave audio reports. Real jewels from the past.
F6FLH Rating: 2016-01-26
TS530S+AT530+VFO240 Time Owned: more than 12 months.
J'ai completé mon TS530S avec le VFO externe 240 et la boite de couplage AT530. Cela fait une belle ligne pour mon traffic quotidien. Dans le TS530S j'ai installé une carte interface BF maison pour les modes numériques à l'emplacement reservé à la carte Notch et utilisé les 2 trous pour les fiches cinchs.Prochain projet : installer une carte Xlock dans le VFO externe.Note toujours à 5/5 pour moi aprés 2 ans et demi au QRA.

Earlier 5-star review posted by F6FLH on 2014-04-03

J'ai acheté ce TRX il y a plus d'un an et je suis heureux de cet acquisition.La réception est superbe et claire et le réglage est simple avec un peu d'habitude. Il sort tranquillement 110 watts HF sur toutes les bandes. Je l'ai équipé des filtres de réception 1.8 Khz et 500 Hz qui sont des plus dans les piles-up. Le VFO externe du TS 120/130 fonctionne avec pour les DX en Split. Conclusion je suis très satisfait de ce modèle hybride pour mon trafic quotidien : la note est 4.9/5 car la prise du manip présente une tension négative de -65V et oblige à avoir un manipulateur électronique avec une sortie négative ou un relais pour être compatible.C'est le seul "défaut" trouver à cet excellent tranceiver Vintage.
WB0OKA Rating: 2014-08-24
Still top notch! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
In my mind, this rig still has it all. If one could still count on distributors building large quantities of quality tubes, I still think this design of rig- the hybrid- would be the way to go. It has it all. It it capable of operating on the WARC bands, along with the other bands 160-10 and puts out a solid 100 watts with a good pair of 6146's.

I own 3 of them- all rescued from ebay- all with needed repairs. One had a smoked transformer, but once a replacement was located, it was not all that difficult to swap it out. Overall, they are still very easy to service and maintain. The digital readout, one of the many improvements over the 520 (which I still consider to be an outstanding rig), makes it more enjoyable to use. The RIT/XIT feature and the IF shift are also strong improvements.

I realize they are in the "vintage" category, but no doubt there are those new or upgraded hams out there considering purchasing their first HF rig, and need to know, this radio is still a good choice.

The only deficiency I have noticed, and it's characteristic of all 3 of the 530's I have, and that is the performance of the band switch. Occasionally it needs to be jiggled to get it to lock into the band you wish to use.
EI5JS Rating: 2014-01-30
10 years after Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I reviewed this rig shortly after I got it first in feb 2004 (as G0WPA). Now, 10 years and many enjoyable contacts later and it's still going strong.

I have worked all over the world with it on SSB, CW, PSK, RTTY, SSTV and even JT65-HF. There's very little that it can't do.

I changed the bottles once and affected a few repairs on it, but nothing too taxing. It's still pumping out 100+ watts across the bands and pulling in the DX like a champ and it still looks and feels every bit the quality rig that it did back then.

It's solid and reliable and a joy to use and it's a beautiful looking radio too. One of the best rigs Kenwood ever produced..
IK5PWL Rating: 2013-08-22
Great old rig Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I'm a voracious collector of old valve radio, I possess, Collins, Drake, Hallicrafters, but I also like to collect even more modern hybrid radio, a few days ago I read an advert in a local forum for a sale of 530s to be repaired , intrigued I purchased it and after repair the final stage i discovered a great receiver and a machine easy to use, audio playback is exceptional.
These transceivers are not great valued but work great.