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Reviews For: Kenwood TM 241

Category: Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held)

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Review Summary For : Kenwood TM 241
Reviews: 42MSRP:
2m FM Transceiver
Product is not in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
W5KVV Rating: 2017-06-23
Too old to be reliable Time Owned: more than 12 months.
These rigs might have been fine 20+ years ago, but they're just too old to be considered reliable in 2017. These are NOT the Kenwood of yesteryear or even the Kenwood of today. The early-mid 90's Kenwood mobiles are of questionable quality and design.

These radios have heat dissipation issues, even on RX only. That, combined with the unreliable Toshiba S-AV17 power module is a failure waiting to happen. Contrary to popular belief, not all S-AV17's can be repaired. The original Toshiba component is long NLA, and substitutes are too costly for only a 20 channel rig.

I have one with a blown power module currently operating as a RX for my APRS I-gate. Even on RX ONLY and with the display lamps turned all the way down, the rig still runs warm, borderline hot to the touch. For comparison, my TM-281 digipeater runs cooler on 25 watts TX.

PROS: Excellent RX. In true Kenwood fashion, they're easy to operate.
CONS: Old. Unreliable power module, displays are known to have issues. Junk microphone, MAJOR thermal issues.

Thank God Kenwood based their modern mono band mobiles off the commercial TK 7000 series. They're leaps & bounds ahead of this rig.
N2MDV Rating: 2017-01-22
Great radio, loose the tear drop DTMF mic. Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Got this rig from a friend in a trade, then found out why, final pack was blown. Only $70.00 for a new RF Final pack for it from RF Part. The new pack puts out 32W, instead of the 50W rated, but that still works for me. Being early 1990's rig, it only has 20 memory channels, which works for scanning while driving. The original tear drop mics can get old and develope a mind of their own to TX at will, so I suggest replacing it with the newer Kenwood MC-58DM 8 pin mic. Yes, there are complaints about the display messing up, but it is self fixable, and can be done better than what Kenwood did. Great ears on RX, TX is Kenwood quality expected. Programing memory channels is easy, and VFO FREQ tuning is easy with the 1 MHz quick steps. (Go from 2M to 162MHz WX stations.) Does what I need it to for 2M.
KE4ZHN Rating: 2015-08-08
Great when it works Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've had two of these rigs. One I bought brand new and the other I got used from a fellow ham. When they work they work well. They have a decent receiver. They are fairly easy to program and will make 50 watts output. They run hot on high power though so don't get too long winded on high power or you can cook eggs on the heat sink. The displays are prone to failure. With age the display in these goes crazy and displays gibberish. These are nowhere near the quality I expect from Kenwood. A disappointment overall.

Earlier 3-star review posted by KE4ZHN on 2009-03-10

I bought a TM 241A brand new when I first got my ticket. It worked fine for a couple years and then got the dreaded display issue. I was able to coax the display to work but it would occasionally still act up. The receive and transmit was good, but the microphone was a piece of junk. It had a piece of foam in it to actuate the PTT switch inside the mike! I had to fix it because the mike wouldnt TX anymore. This wasnt a horrible rig but the quality wasnt what I would expect from Kenwood to be honest.
VK4KX Rating: 2012-12-24
Small size big ears Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I don't remember when I bought my little TM-241 but it's been a great little radio for many years, and has great sensitivity.
I have never had any trouble with programming it unlike others who have on this site.
In VFO mode press the MHZ button to get your starting frequency then dial up the Frequency, input your offset - or + then hit "F" and dial up the Channel number and Hit "MR" if you need a sub audible Tone input that before going to the "F" and save part.
My only gripe is the 21 channels aren't enough for all the repeaters available to me at my QTH, so I saved the ones I use most and use the VFO for the rest.
I need the Shift button if anyone has a dead radio.

AI4WM Rating: 2012-09-16
Great working little radio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I bought mine a few years ago since I knew it would fit the only place I could put it in my car. I had a TM-231A in my other car and the TM-241A is not much different.

The radio works fine on all power levels (5, 10 or 50 watts)and is easily programmed. The only problems with this radio is it only has 20 memory channels and relies on an internal battery for memory backup. The original design for the battery is very poor and I think done that way so one had to send the radio back to Kenwood and spend even more money to have the battery replaced. I modified mine to make the battery easy to replace. This may need done on all of them since I doubt Kenwood would even support a radio this old.

I rated it a 4 because of the battery issue and that it uses and LCD display rather than LEDs so the display will die if you live in a cold climate or will not be easily seen with polarized sunglasses.
KC0VOE Rating: 2012-04-25
FAIL Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Yet another Kenwood radio that failed. I dont think Kenwood knows how to solder. I would not buy another one.
KC7YRA Rating: 2010-02-03
Not bad!! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I picked up my 241A from a hamfest. It was $20. I wanted a "beater" radio to put in my off roading vehicle.

This little radio was great. I beat the crap out of it. COVERED in dirt, wet, hit with objects. It kept on ticking. Never a problem. Always on the dash of my vehicle. Didn't matter if it was 120 degrees, it worked fine.

I eventually had to sell it due to financial problems (Got $110 on ebay).

The reason for the 4 you ask? It was an absolute NIGHTMARE to program. It was the most counter intuitive, convoluted programming scheme in the history of radios.

Other than that though, it was a winner.
KB0UQX Rating: 2010-01-29
Virtually Indestructible Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I purchased my TM-241A new in 1996, just after I got my ticket, for mobile use. Not long afterward, after the warranty expired, the display went south. I had a well known SK that has repaired many rigs take a look at it and he said to retire it to a base unit. I later took it apart and discovered all it needed was to shim the board forward so the display plug engages better. After this very minor mod, this rig has been totally trouble free. It's even fallen off the dash onto the floor many times due to our rough forest service road. It seems to be virtually indestructible. I just purchased another TM-241A with a display problem and repaired it for use in another vehicle of ours. They don't have all the bells and whistles the new rigs have but that's ok by me. They do everything I need.

I do have three newer dual band rigs but prefer my old TM-241A's due to their ruggedness and simplicity of operation.
KB2FCV Rating: 2010-01-27
Glad I checked here! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I have a TM-241A that was given to me over 10 years ago because it 'did not transmit'. Sure enough, I tested it with the stock mic and nothing happened. It received perfectly fine. I put it in a box and forgot about it. That was 10+ years ago. I found it earlier today and decided to look it up here on eham. Low and behold I read about mic issues. On a whim, I shorted ptt to ptt ground and the radio puts out power just fine! I suppose I'll pick up a new mic up for it. I'm not sure what I'll do with it otherwise.. good little backup 2 meter rig.
K5YC Rating: 2009-03-09
Bad radio Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Shortly after purchasing radio microphoe failed. Then display went. Sent radio off to be
fixed. Came back broken. I found problems
and fixed radio promptly selling it to someone
else before other trouble. Can not recommend
this radio.