Manager - NA4M
Manager Notes

Reviews For: Ten-Tec Omni-VII

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

eMail Subscription

Registered users are allowed to subscribe to specific review topics and receive eMail notifications when new reviews are posted.
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
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
W9ATB Rating: 2008-04-24
Outstanding Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
36 reviews so far not counting this one and all fives. I can't think of a thing to add that hasn't already been said.
AE5I Rating: 2008-04-22
Best transceiver I've ever used or owned! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I've known of Ten-Tec's reputation for high quality gear for a long time but this is the first piece of their equipment I've ever owned.

It all started when my buddy got an Omni-VII and let me try it out. Good grief! I immediately knew I had to get one...

When mine arrived a few weeks ago, getting up to speed with it was a very short process. I believe that a LOT of effort went into making it intuitive. The menu items are easy to understand and written out in English, rather than made of little cryptic acronyms. The on-screen information is well thought out and easy to read. The fact that the Multi encoder stays linked to the most recent function chosen, until you choose another one is very convenient. The controls are very well laid out and I never feel like I am "constantly digging through menus" like on some other rigs.

The ability to just push a front-panel button and transmit a carrier for tuning purposes is extremely convenient.

The receiver is the best I've used. I bought both of the optional filters (500 cycles and 300 cycles) and the performance is incredible. When the interference is at its worst, the 300 cycle roofing filter combined with the digitally implemented 200 cycle filter really gets the job done. It's positively uncanny to hear NO blow-by and to be able to operate CW using a narrow filter and heavy noise blanking and still be totally unaware of a really loud signal a kc away from your operating frequency. The digital noise reduction is really good too. Along with making some signals readable that would not be otherwise, it can also just drop the noise floor and make a difficult to copy signal a much easier copy. Careful adjustment of the RF gain control can really optimize the digital noise reduction's effect.

And the QSK!

The QSK is the best I've ever experienced anywhere. With careful adjustment of the RF Gain control and the AGC set to Medium, my transmitted signal sounds like just another signal on the band. I don't know how it would get any better than that! It's going to cost me another $325 or so for a QSK-5 though, because now I'm on a mission to make my amps QSK capable!

I have mostly run vintage gear on CW for many years and this is the first solid state rig that I've ever operated that I like better. This one will spoil you!

I also bought the auxiliary fan and mounted it on the heatsink. It's very quiet and I learned a long time ago that getting the heat out of a PA is a good thing... :-)

I recommend both optional roofing filters, but if you only buy one, I'd recommend the 500 cycle one because it gives you more bandwidths available while it's still in the signal path.

My compliments to Ten-Tec... They've got a real winner in the Omni-VII!
K2JX Rating: 2008-04-05
Excellent Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Traded in my 4 year old Orion 1 for a new Omni 7.
Although I loved my Orion 1, it was time for something new. I was unhappy with the Orion's lastest flash upgrade,AGC response and the lack of six meters. So, off to e-Ham to check the reviews and see what real operators say about Ten-Tec's latest HF+6 all mode transceiver.

I've been a Ten-Tec owner since 1995 starting with a Paragon II optioned out, matching tuner and Centurion linear. The Paragon and 238 tuner worked well until 2004 when I sold both and bought an Orion, again after reading the reviews on these pages.

OK, so how is my new Omni 7 ? Just perfect ! The receiver is bullet proof, the menu e-z to bring up. The optional Collins filters (300-500hz) and DSP combo are in my view superior to the roofing filters in the Orion. The AGC, analog thank you. What an improvement to my ears. No more fiddling with "settings", just press slow, med, fast, off. The time constants are right on. Or shut of the agc and "ride" the rf gain, Yay !

What's missing, well the S-meter. The bar graph has taken over. But wait, there's more, the bright color display, just enough information. Each mode has it's own most used functions on screen. For instance, in the CW mode your keyer speeds can be changed without bring up the menu ! On to the band scope...great for checking band conditions with a push of a button. No, it's not free running, I dunno why ?

I am very happy I traded in my Orion and bought this Omni 7, as are so many here on E-Ham. I can't believe how quiet the receiver is, how easy it is to operate, all that in nice compact package. I haven't used the GUI yet or the ethernet capability, I'm having too much fun just listening and playing with the DSP and notch filters.

73-de Jack K2JX
KF4LDQ Rating: 2008-03-22
Impressed and ready to help advertise Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
After weeks of constant debate and research as to whether I should
buy the FT-2000 or the OmniVII, I purchased the Omni on Sunday. I
received my radio by Tuesday and since then it has been clear that I
made the right decision. So far I am impressed to say the least. On
my first contact on 75 meters while trying to tweak my audio for the
first time the station that I was talking to told me that he could
not believe the broadcast quality of the audio and that he too was
thinking about buying the omniVII and if they all sounded like mine
he was going to sell his 1000MP. That comment just help enforce my
love and confidence in this radio. In the past I have had just one
HF rig being an ICOM and I cannot believe the reciever performance
that I now have and I am looking forward to future improvements(If
any can be made?) and I will suggest to anyone to look into this
radio first before they decide to buy thier next HF rig. This radio
has a straight forward menu system that is so easy to understand that
anyone could use it even my kid. There so much more I can say but to
sum it up I am impressed and ready to help advertise. I don't know
how many of these have been sold so far but to the informed they are
a diamond in the rough. Great work Ten-Tec.

N8IPO Rating: 2008-02-17
Great Radio Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I purchased my Omni-VII at the 2007 Dayton Hamvention. I was looking for a HF rig that had all the DSP bells and whistles, could be upgraded via software, easy to take out into the field for field day and made in the US. I sure did find what I was looking for in the Omni-VII.
I have had no problems with this rig and it continues to impress me each time I use it.
Ten-Tec has a winner!
W2VT Rating: 2008-02-14
Excellent CW Rig Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I'm reviewing the OMNI 7 after over 6 months of use.
The OMNI 7's receiver is interesting in a very positive way... the audio circuits have very low distortion and a flat bandwidth (reminding me of a laboratory instrument), permitting the IF-DSP to totally control the received bandwidth regardless of the center frequency chosen. The result is the best sounding CW receiver I've ever used. In addition, I have yet to be bothered by any "overload" problems. The AGC shows no annoying overshoot or pumping artifacts on strong signals - even during DX contests on the low bands. On the transmit side, the QSK implementation works well (I use the OMNI 7's keying loop with a QSK amplifier), and the adjustable CW rise/fall time results in an excellent transmitted CW signal. Firmware updates provided by Ten-Tec have provided multiple improvements, and I look forward to what's offered next. The OMNI 7 is a keeper for this CW operator. - Rich W2VT, Warwick NY / Beach Haven NJ.
VA2AM Rating: 2008-02-14
Specs are as promised Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I got my first license in 1977. Rx performance was top priority for contest followed by chasing dx. Technical reviews did my final choice.
Omni VII_T, roofing filter 300-500 hz, external fan, desk mike 780 on version 1025.
This is the only radio in the 3k$ class that has -134 db rejection at 2khz with 500hz filter. All other are in the -94 db range. I work 55% SSB, 45% CW and 5% Digital.
Construction is A-1, almost each coax cable have a ferrite bead, opto-coupler line in, not publicized each antenna input has a gas discharge plug, over current RF final protection will shut down the radio (I know I did), unlimited Tx time with the external fan.
Menu access is easy to master, pressing the multi knob gives all the main functions with your selected mode. Pressing any key will give you the right value or the ratio % no guessing for the mic gain, cw speed and other.
I tested this radio during ARRL_dx_phone, CQ160cw, WPX_digital and never I felt the AGC pumping from qrm. No detected ringing with 200hz cw, 1-2% volume only used and this makes so easy for your hear. You get a solid copy FSK mode even on 80 m.
Very simple to download new version 1025, also T-T supplies a tool SUM check that you run after the upgrade, nice feature.
Mic gain is one of the main topics, people have tendency to use too much gain. I guess the software will not allow you to get over a level and the ALC will create some distortion. Mine is settled at 20% only and I get superb report. True 50uv for S-9 signal.
I do not plan to work remote this radio and I will not comment.
This radio uses only half of its flash Eprom memory for further application. One wishing list would be adjustable AGC rise time to fine tune reception like Orion II.
This is my first Ten Tec radio, very easy to get in touch with technical staff and I am a happy owner. The surprise was there is no surprise after you master the SDR section.
73, Rejean

HB9ALO Rating: 2008-02-01
Chose for the circuits accuracy Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Licenced since 1967 I have been working only CW, and my main interest is the DX activity.
Bought my Omni VII directly from Ten Tec factory in TN.
Used intensively during a couple of months this equipment met my expectations, I'am impressed.
Design ergonomically clean, simple and functional.
Receiver very quiet and sensitive and the selectivity, thaks to 500Hz Collins filter installed, is sharp.
The sound quality in CW is lovely and pure.
Thanks to good receiver dynamic range, on 30 and 40 meters I don't need to insert any attenuations, in particular condition I can simply reduce the RF gain level.
Transmitter qualities are superb, particularly suitable for the CW mode.
Very satisfied with my new set up: Omni VII + Acom 1000, vertical AV640 and WARC rotary dipole.

Thanks Ten Tec, congratulations for the development !
K4BXN Rating: 2008-01-30
Well ... Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I have been a ham for 47 yrs and have had the pleasure of operating many different transceivers including the Ten Tec Orion and the FlexRadio SDR 1000. I operate 99% CW with a smattering of PSK and SSB. The pleasure per buck ratio of this Omni VII is the best. It is hands down much easier to get great reception out of than the Orion. And of course it has the legendary Ten Tec QSK. I live in town and am surrounded with power lines all at about the same height as my antenna. The Omni 7 and the Flex handle this noise better than any other rig I have had. My only quibbles with the rig are the bandscope which pales in comparison to the FlexRadio SDR 1000 and the lack of a truly narrow CW filter. The DSP filter only goes down to 200 Hz. I have used the 25Hz filter on the SDR 1000 many times on crowded bands. I understand that an improvement for the bandscope is in the pipeline and I use a Timewave DSP 59+ to really hone down the bandwidth when needed. But I assure you if something happened to my Omni VII, I would buy another in a heart beat. Great rig and if I should need it great service.
G3RCE Rating: 2008-01-30
Excellent Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I just love using this radio, congrats and thanks again to TenTec. I was very pleased with my ORION II which was really wasted on me.
However, this radio entirely suits me
I haven't yet tried using it remotely.

73 Rob G3RCE