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Reviews For: Ten-Tec Omni-VII

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

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Review Summary For : Ten-Tec Omni-VII
Reviews: 110MSRP: 2850
Ten-Tec Omni-VII Model 588AT (with Autotuner) 160 thru 6 meter Transceiver
Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
KI4SWE Rating: 2012-10-04
Easy, Fun and a solid performer Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I am a new General operator so I cant boast of 20 years of experience, however I can tell you that using the Omni as my first HF radio has been wonderful. Stan and Jim at Tentec were great to work with before and after the sale with my typical new operator questions and I love the fact that it was made in the USA.

The radio is simple to use and very intuitive without having to spend weeks in the manual, yet there is plenty of adjustment and filters to tune in anything. I have had mine for over 6 months now and simply love it. Thanks TenTec
K3UR Rating: 2012-04-14
STUPENDOUS Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I have owned 19 HF radios in the past 35 years as a licensed Amateur Radio Operator and my Ten-Tec Omni VII ranks right near the top.

As a musician for over 60 years and the Setup Specialist W2IHY Audio Gear, the Omni VII was the perfect fit for my type of operation and for the instruction to others on the ham bands.

The Omni VII has surely lived up to it's stated specs and standards and delivers the benefits that the features speak about.

As a avid audiophile, the Omni VII has exceeded my expectations with a remarkable receiver that is flat from 20Hz to 4000Hz and a transmitter that
delivers the mellifluous audio that is music to one's ears. The monitoring circuit is outstanding and my Sony MDR-V900 headphones with 50mm drivers can capture all the lows, mids and highs.

The knobs and buttons are strategically positioned
to make quick and easy changes and the menus are easy to understand and set.

As the former owner of some other larger and heavier radios like the Kenwood TS-950, Ten-Tec Orion II and Yaesu FTdx5000MP, it truly was a pleasure to carry the boxed Omni VII under one arm into my hamshack.

You can see my setup for this radio on NU9N's website and also get a wealth of information about radios, setup, record and playback.

My Omni VII has taken it's rightful place alongside my Flex-5000 and Kenwood TS-870 in my hamshack and you can see all of these on QRZ'd under my callsign, K3UR.

My first software upgrade was the fastest and the easiest of any other radio that I have had and I am happy to give the Omni VII top rating here.

N4DOV Rating: 2012-02-06
outstanding and easy to use Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
1200 contacts on SSB in 5 months. Easy to set up, easy to operate, easy to use menus and make it as simple or complex as one wants. Oustanding receive and transmit with the usual comment from contact that "always hear great audio from Ten-Tec rigs". One can really trust all these excellent reviews. Wonderful purchase - thanks Ten-Tec.
KG9H Rating: 2012-02-05
An excellent radio Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Initial thoughts and findings… I will do this in a few steps - too much to take in for a past Jupiter user...
Well I waited and waited to purchase my OMNI VII (it is just.. a larger Jupiter is what I thought, right?) Well Move over Jupiter..
I had thought that I was replacing my Jupiter with it's bigger brother but when I opened up the radio and placed it where the Jupiter was….I noticed this is not your bigger brother.
Mine has the optional 500Hz and 300Hz filters inside and have the 302R remote hooked up to it. My tuner is remoted and at the base of a 120' long wire. Not a contest station by any means.
Stan from Ten Tec was nice enough to "hook one up" for me to try for a night there and I was doing the controls from here in the home QTH. That was a big plus getting me familiar with the OMNI VII before I got mine. What a great plus Ten Tec - thanks.. The receiver is a huge step up from my Jupiter, mind you the Jupiter was… my gold standard before..
I am pretty much "just" a CW operator so don't ask me SSB questions, not there yet, and don't really have any mic's to hook up - yet.
On CW, I was able to use the 300Hz optional filter and the 200Hz bandwidth filter so it seemed like I was listening to a CW code practice oscillator, just a single signal to listen to - nice…
I also like to listen to AM radio, both on 3.885 and on the standard AM broadcast band. I liked the 8kHz on my Jupiter and this one has it as well. (It also has 9kHz but my ears like the 8kHz the best.) Very very nice… Next sep, remoting the radio with it's LAN capability.

Regards, Frank, KG9H
KX6G Rating: 2012-01-20
A Joy Forever! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
This will be my second review of the OmniVII. My first review was under my original callsign KD6RXM if you would like to check that one out. The upshot of this overview is the more I use it the more I am amazed at the performance.

My favorite pass time with this radio now is operating CW. Although unable to actually send or receive CW by my own hand and ear, with the help of computer software I manage pretty nicely. There is a limitation to this method, especially when receiving.

I would explain it this way; operating CW is like playing a musical instrument. If one were to play the notes exactly as written, without any nuanced inflection, the music would sound rather mechanical and dry. Although it may be technically accurate, musician style creates those nuances and inflections that actually make listening more interesting. This is the same way with CW. To a trained ear one could probably expect to recognize a particular operators style just as one would recognize a musicians style. Software cannot overcome the human condition. The radio clearly hears extremely well. If only the software were in the same league.

Isolating weak signals and eliminating the noise is what makes this radio special to me. Most the time when I hear several operators on or near my frequency, a few adjustments on the radio is all it takes to spotlight that one operator I'm interested in.

On the side bands, I continually get reports on how good the audio sounds. A far cry from my first audio reports with this rig. And as explained in my first review, it was only a matter of a few adjustments in the menu.

I can't think of too much negative things to say about this radio, but if I had to say one thing it would be the small knobs and the trim rings around the knobs on the radio. I would prefer a more robust solid feeling to these knobs. I guess if I'm going to complain about something about this radio, that would be the only thing.

From what I understand there is a lot of unused capability in this radio. Spots were left open in the firmware programming to accommodate new features. There has not been a recent upgrade to the firmware in a while that takes advantage of the reserved capability, and a lot of us hope that Ten-Tec would be providing more features to the radio as well as tweaking existing programing.

By the way, the software [one plug software] that you can get from Ten-Tec, is very generic looking in presentation, but allows for tweaking of most all the functions on the radio and provides a platform for typing in messages to send CW.

I have operated this radio from a sitting position in front of it to remote operation from the other California loactions. The Internet connection, whether using voice or CW, in conjunction with the one plug software, makes the operating smooth and transparent. It really makes no difference where you are seated, the radio performs beautifully.

I am not a "Contestor" or a big-time "DXer", so I can't speak to the performance on that level. But I can tell you this is a fine radio, so easy to use, and a joy forever.

K4JAH Rating: 2011-11-12
my favorite Time Owned: more than 12 months.
If I only could have one radio it is this one. excellent in all areas. I'm looking for another one for a different qth.

Earlier 5-star review posted by K4JAH on 2010-12-12

after trying others I have returned once again to Just the best reciever and trans for the money I can find.
Earlier 5-star review posted by K4JAH on 2008-02-17

KA3NXN Rating: 2011-10-17
Initial Thoughts Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
WOW!! For starters. I had heard that this rig was very intuitive to operate, so I pulled it out of the box and just studied it for a little bit before I hooked it up. Hooked it up to my supply and my Carolina Windom 40-10, and fired it up. The screen came on and did a self check while it was loading and the rig came to life. I first wanted to see how easy it was, so I fiddled with it to get it on 10 meters and was able to turn the power down to only 10 watts, and put it right on 28.450. All within the first 2 minutes of just turning it on. I had it set and worked the Ukraine on 10 meters with only 10 watts. It is an unbelievable rig. It is very easy to figure out the menu system just like they claim. I will report back as soon as I get much more familiar with the rig. My goal is to have it hooked up to the net and use it remotely from my work QTH.

Good to see 10 meters back too.
K7NSW Rating: 2011-09-29
A PLEASURE TO OPERATE Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Bought it new over a year ago. Use it at home and on Field Day type outtings. Delightfully easy to use. I occasionally try other brands owned by friends and cannot understand why they buy them. The complexity of them is unacceptable to me - too slow, too complicated and too cumbersome. My Omni 7 gets better as I learn better ways to operate it. I recently purchased their antenna tuner and am on back-order for their amplifier. CW QSK has never been sweeter. Cannot comment on other modes as I do not operate them.
K4TAX Rating: 2011-07-04
Good Performance and ease of operation Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've owned my Omni VII since August of 2007. I've found it to be an excellent performer in all aspects. Receive audio is very clean and easy on the ears. The two optional filters are a real plus on CW and the digital modes.

The ease of operation is as it should be and all functions and MENU items are easy to understand and easy to use. Transmit audio reports with the 709A mike are "great audio". The internal Speech Processor pushes the average level up to break DX pile ups as needed without causing pinched up audio sound. The QSK CW operation, even when coupled with the Centrion amp, is clean, fast and trouble free.

Although these features work as described, the "one shot" band sweep is just that, one shot and requires a press of the SWP button to refresh the display. The direct Internet connection works satisfactorly for me, however it is fragile in terms of its robustness and requires a fast modem, a fast internet connection and very clean RF free environment for 100% reliable operation.

There have been zero failures of hardware and the firmware has always been updated with the latest version. There have been zero lock-ups during the period indicating the solidarity of the firmware and operating system.

For a good performance radio, with desireable features, the Omni VII will be hard to beat. The Sherwood Engineering report and the ARRL Product Review shows the radio to be an excellent performance product that meets or exceeds all specifications.

I rate it a good value for the price.
N9HH Rating: 2011-06-06
Still not quite right Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This is a tale of two radios, Part II.

The second radio arrived 8 days later. It is s/n 06D11040. TT had thoughtfully put the cw filters in it and it already had the tuner mounted.

I put the unit on the dummy load and fired it up.
On 160 it was OK; on 80 it was OK. It was OK on all the bands until I got to 12 meters, where, on the first dit it shut down. It seemed to be OK on 10 and 6 meters.

I did a little testing and found that on 12 meters if the swr was over 1.4/1 and the power was set over 40 or 50 watts, the high current indicator would come on and eventually shut the radio down even at those low power settings. I beleve I saw posted somewhere where the SCR wouldn't fire until 25 amps was drawn; the ammeter on my power supplies never showed more than about 19 on either of the two radios.

I actually put this radio on my poor antenna and made 5 contacts on 30 meters, with the power turned down to 40 watts. The TX held in there, but the receiver sounded very noisy. I also found that signals sounded better in a wide band pass than with the narrow filters, both mechanical and DSP switched in.

Another call to TT. After discussion I thought I was told a pick up order for everything would be issued. An RMA was issued but I wasn't told about it until I emailed the sales department a week later. After 11 days, there had been no pick up of the equipment so I called again. I was advised that since they knew there was nothing wrong with either radio, they were not going to pay to have them return shipped.

I threw everything in the car and drove the 550 miles to TT and returned all the equipment on the morning of June 2. My refund check was not waiting as I had requested, but one was issued that morning and a credit card refund was issued for some accessories I purchased after the initial transaction. I can only say that when TT personnel determined I was returning the stuff, the relationship turned pretty cool.

Since then I have received an email from TT's service manager assuring me that both radios checked out fine and dandy, so I don't know. All I can say is that if it won't work on a dummy load, I'm afraid of it.