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Reviews For: Yaesu VX-3R

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

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Review Summary For : Yaesu VX-3R
Reviews: 139MSRP: 199
A micro-sized dual band entry from vertex/standard...With 1.5 watts output on 2 meters, and 1 watt on 440... With 13.8 vdc power jumps to 3 watts on 144, and 2 on 440...Has wide band rx, and NEW ferrite bar antenna for AM broadcasts... 1000 ma/1 amp lithium -ion battery
Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
N9EWO Rating: 2021-09-28
I still prefer the VX-2R.... Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
With the first “Brand New” VX-3R sample I received the internal was microphone totally dead. It appears that I’m not alone experiencing this one either.

When compared to the older VX-2R here are MY comments.

First the rubber feeling PTT is mushier as is the squelch break button, the power button is even a bit harder to push as well (the VX-2R’s power button was bad enough).

The rest of the pushbuttons are of a hard plastic type with a “clicky” feeling to them. They take much more pressure to make-work and are more recessed. If you have the radio in the CSC-92 case they are much hardier to deal with. The pull out knob I don’t care for at all. The encoder has a bit of slop and when rotated there is rotational play (from click to click)

I do like the microphone level adjustment and the better LCD backlighting. The FBA-37 AA battery holder option is nice too, but I could not get it to fit with ni-mh batteries very well (most were way too big). But you are not supposed to use rechargeable batteries anyway.

Vertex Standard did clear up the CTCSS/DCS delay bug that plagues the VX-2R in scanning and is is also true with many other Yaesu handie talkies, this was good to see fixed.

A feature that was on the VX-1R but not on the 2R that has been used again with the 3R , is a "electronic volume" control. But unlike the VX-1R, there is no up down buttons and one is forced to push in and HOLD a "Vol" button and THEN use the knob on top to make volume adjustments. This is a chore to adjust the volume now being forced to use the tuning encoder to turn it up or down. The "volume control" set up on the VX-2R is MUCH better in my view. So a huge step backwards I'm afraid here for me. I like the VX-2R's volume control set up MUCH better.

Or if one wishes, you can reverse these so the top encoder to become the "volume control" all the time, but this is still not that great to my uses.

In the set menu, I did like the 94 selections (compare to only 46 on the VX-2R). You can now turn off the blasted "Beep" every time the squelch breaks when scanning the memory channels (but still keep the keyboard beep on, this now has a separate toggle).

As others have already covered the FM broadcast is deaf as a fence post (and that is what I have found too).

However, the 800~900 Mhz sensitivity is MUCH improved over the VX-2R. It’s actually usable here now.

After testing in various outdoor situations, the VX-2R is the clear winner for receive/speaker quality. There is a hint of bass response and has a bit more hiss with the VX-3R (you cant push bass out of a micro sized speaker if at all from a Handheld Transceiver). Mind you it's still MUCH better over the Icom IC-P7A lousy receive audio. Volume level is about the same, but I have a harder time hearing the output in an outdoor situation with the VX-3R. The older VX-2R rules here with the more crisp and cleaner audio from the speaker.

That's my side of it, and I’m sure many will disagree. Mind you it’s not a wash out, but I prefer the VX-2R myself when you compare the 2 side by side.

For my reviews on both see:

Thanks for reading,
Dave N9EWO
W2HR Rating: 2017-08-15
GR888 little shirt pocket radio Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I really like this little dual band radio it does me a great job & I mostly use it for my IRLP (3756)& my All Star node (46363) I am so proud of mine I have purchased another also but they are very scarce now that Yaesu has stopped production. Really a shame since they are so nice with a very low battery drain on the lowest power setting. The programming of this one is really quite easy but like so many new one seems to be bit confusing to some. I know both Chirp as RT Systems provide programming also. Sure hope Yaesu or someone would produce one similar I would purchase in a heart beat! Harold W2HR
K4ECD Rating: 2016-11-28
Packs a punch! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Great little HT and wide range receiver with good selectivity.

Menu System was surprisingly simple, not difficult to program without the manual - unlike many HTs

Big audio from the speakers too, which you might not expect from such a small package.

No regrets, and very handy to put in your pocket and go. Be mindful of the power output limitations (download the manual), if you are 15 miles from the repeater - this little wonder may not get you there!

5/5 - Perfect compact, simple 2m/70cm HT

G7IDJ Rating: 2016-09-12
Good Value for Money Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I bought the radio about a year ago. I am sure a lot has been said. I still have to find a flaw. For the size it works really well. I had the VX2 before which was nice. It seems the VX3 is a good progress.
Thinks I like:
1. The size and weight.
There is no excuse now to leave the radio at home.

2. Audio Quality
For the size of the radio the audio quality is exceptional. It is loud and clear.

3. Coverage of broadcast bands
FM, AM and SW
Nice add on when the bands are dead. You can just spend some time scanning the broadcast bands and check out propagation on SW

4. The Stereo Jack
Ideal add on, it is now possible to to hook up your radio to the car hifi easily and monitor broadcasts or your club frequency regardless of car noise.

5. Sensitivity
Really good sensitivity on all bands.

6. Menu
it is fairly straight forward to use

Things to do:
Carry a spare battery on you. Even though the factory battery is quite good, sods law has it that it will fail just when you need it most. Spare batteries are standard and cheap on ebay.
I would definitely carry a spare if you use it on the move.

Things I would improve:
The DC socket is somewhat off a standard size forcing you to use Yaesu accessories.
I wished to see a USB charging socket since the world seems to have gone USB.

Otherwise a purchase not regretted!

I have the samey looking Baofeng version which just operates in UHF/VHF - although usable in performance, slickness, configurability, usability etc. it doesn't compare at all. You get what you pay for!
Not bad the Baofeng but not reaching up to Yaesu standards.
WB5LFV Rating: 2016-09-11
perfect beats them all hands down!! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
the true mighty atom! this little gem does all I need and more as it has shortwave receive and 2m and 440 coverage plus your fm/am broadcast with weather and weather alert if needed! this is a super radio that can do it all! also it uses np-60 camera battery and I use a outboard charger you can get on amazon for a very low price! so this talkie works and hears very well and is easy to carry all day without the fatigue so if you want a super cool small radio that does dual band with wide receive and such this is for you!!
KJ6FXA Rating: 2015-08-29
Great little handheld Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I bought this radio on a whim (got a little bonus from work). I am a Yaesu man...I own the 897D, 8900 and the FT-60. I work on the road as a field supervisor for my company in a major metro area (SD,CA) and as such I carry a small bag with all my needs. I bought a Boefeng UV-3R to carry in my bag. It worked okay just wasn't a Yaesu. This radio performed quite well, I had a Diamond SRH77CA antenna on my fit right on this radio and made a nice radio into a great radio. And the BC band makes it even nicer as I can't always have a radio in the vehicle I drive. All in all...a great investment on my part.
K3BH Rating: 2015-07-20
Great little radio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've owned this radio for a number of years and it continues to satisfy me. It's one of a stable of a half-dozen or so HTs, so doesn't get used as often as it would otherwise. The DC-daylight aspect is particularly nice as well as 1000 channels of memory storage. I mostly use it for monitoring public safety, marine, and railroad channels. My only complaint is that the power on/off switch has gotten balky and needs to be pressed "just so" to turn the radio on and off. It's reliable in that respect, just need to get the magic touch. It might be worth buying another one rather than getting this one fixed. Batteries are cheap and I did the AA case modification to use the "fat" NP-120 batteries for many long hours of use per charge. The price today, $139, makes this radio a real bargain.
KI6BAX Rating: 2015-07-03
Handy little radio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I owned this radio several years ago but sold it. I found that I missed having it and purchased another one recently. I'm glad to have it back. I still had the little whip antennae I used to use and I'm back in business. I keep it in my pack in the local mountains (theres an antenna farm at the top so reception isn't typically a problem). I bought the software this time around which made it MUCH easier to get my favorite frequencies back into the radio. The price has also dropped about $40 since I bought my original one.

Earlier 5-star review posted by KI6BAX on 2007-08-28

I have to admit that I was prepared to accept the limitations of a micro-HT with wide band reception but I live in the shadow of a 5600'mountain with an antenna farm on it so if a micro HT was going to work anywhere, it would be here. I bought this to have something light to carry when mountain biking in our local SoCal mountains. Initially I was pleasantly surprised how well it worked into my local repeaters. Reception of broadcast stations was pretty poor though since most of them are 50 miles north in LA. I added a Diamond SRH815 6" bottom loaded antenna and got a bump of around S-4 on the radios meter. Audio reports into my local repeaters were more favorable with this antenna as well. Overall a nice radio you can carry anywhere!
VE7DGM Rating: 2015-02-19
No longevity Time Owned: more than 12 months.
My unit was great for several years, unfortunately it is now dead. Still receives but no transmit. Was a good HT but it has to last longer then 2years.
This unit was treated very well, never dropped, kept dry and kept warm in the extreme cold of the North.
Can't believe it didn't last longer, very disappointed.
M0GNA Rating: 2015-01-07
Mighty Atom Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Its hard to believe the size when you first unpack it.You could be forgiven for thinking it being a toy.A toy it is not,its a brilliant little radio packed with features and built to last,no radio hams shirt pocket should be without one,its truly amazing what this matchbox can do.The only thing that some might think lets it down is the rubber duck antenna,it works well enough but something with a bit more clout might improve things on transmit.All in all its a little gem and I love it.