Manager - NA4M
Manager Notes

Reviews For: Yaesu FTdx-5000 (including D and MP versions)

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 : Yaesu FTdx-5000 (including D and MP versions)
Reviews: 146MSRP: 5750 (D version)
The FT dx 5000 Series HF/50 MHz 200 Watt Transceivers are a new Premium Class of Yaesu radios with 2 Independent Receivers plus many unique options and accessories designed to meet the Performance Requirements of even the most demanding serious Amateur Radio operator.
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
CWDX73 Rating: 2014-07-23
Great Receiver, Concerns about Long Term Relaibility Time Owned: more than 12 months.
The FTDX-5000 has the best performing receiver I have every experienced in terms of both dynamic range and audio quality--it is very easy on the ears. I liked it so much I tried two of them, but gave up after experiencing too many issues.

My first 5000D was an early 2010 model. It was received with the misprinted label and QSK issue. I also had an issue with RF feedback sneaking into the headphone jack that required multiple trips to Yaesu to fix. Since this one felt like a lemon I returned it.

My second 5000D purchased in 2012 developed the OLED failure. Then the internal antenna tuner failed the first time I used it. After getting it fixed I sold it and decided to take a break from the 5000.

Both 5000Ds that I owned showed slight but noticeable receive audio distortion when both receivers where engaged as if the audio amp became overloaded. This is known by many owners and a general work around is to use an external audio mixer to drive the speakers and headphone.

NC0B did some measurements of the transmitter IMD and showed that with the processor engaged the IMD performance falls similar to 12V transistors, even in class A.

Another issue that seems to be increasing in frequency is failure of the VFO-A digital encoder. This has been reported by several owners on the FTDX-5000 Yahoo group.

Interestingly, there is a recent review of the FTDX-5000 that acknowledges most of the failures I have mentioned but the reviewer still gives a 5/5. I guess the good receiver performance is enough to make up for the reliability concerns for some.

In my case I decided to move (down) to the FTDX-3000D. It has a similarly nice sounding receiver and if it ever develops a problem it won't be an issue to ship (the 5000D costs $150 to ship one way).
W9KDX Rating: 2014-06-19
Line defect still there. Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Just thought potential buyers should know, be prepared to pay for shipping if you don't like the dreaded vertical white line problem. Mine is just over a year old and they are still using defective parts. Nice that they stand behind this issue, but shipping is massively expensive and I would have preferred that they just use non-defective parts.
VE6TL Rating: 2014-06-06
4 Year Review Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I reviewed my MP on eHam back in May, 2010 after having it a short time. Mine is one of the early ones with "Tranceiver" spelled incorrectly on the front panel.

So how well has this rig held up? The only thing I've done to it was the firmware upgrades - about 6 months ago. This was a delicate procedure that took me about two hours to complete, but the results were worth it. The APF now works amazingly well, whereas before, it was very ineffective. Other problems I've had with the rig include:

1) S-Meter occasionally sticking to the left pin (which is always fixed with a slap to the left side of the radio).

2) Vertical line (one or two of them) randomly appearing on the VFO-A OLED display. This initially went away with the firmware upgrade but came back a few months later. It seems to come and go and doesn't really affect the operation of the rig.

3) VFO-A rotary encoder very noisy. Apart from the main tuning knob, this is the second most used control on the radio. It controls the filter selection, notch, APF, DNR, IF-Shift, VRF, clarifier frequency, etc. Turning the knob one way or the other often results in random settings. Other FT5000 owners have also reported similar results with theirs, with one having opened up his rig and finding a "cheap and poor quality" rotary encoder.

While these three items appear to be very common and annoying, they don't really affect the radio that much and I haven't been able to justify the expense of sending the radio back to Yaesu.

4) The station monitor is pretty useless, so I've been using a third party pan adapter which has made a huge improvement on "seeing" the signals.

In terms of positives, the receiver is still hard to beat and with the APF working great, I can pull weak CW signals out of the noise that most rigs wouldn't hear at all. My neighborhood is plagued with all sorts of RFI and without the vast array of noise cancelling tools, I probably wouldn't be on the air at all.

Finally, regarding reliability, the rig has not let me down once in the 4+ years I've been using it - and this has included a lot of use (contesting, DXing, etc.). As I told the XYL when I was considering the purchase, this will be the last rig I will ever need - and I am still sticking with this years later.
WK9U Rating: 2014-04-16
Best well-rounded Transceiver Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
First of all, I wish I could give these rigs a 5+ grade but Eham won't allow it, HIHI.

In the Yaesu line, I went from the Mark V to 1000mp back to a Mark V and then the FT2000 while somewhere inbetween I toyed with an 857D but nevermind that.
I feel the FT5K series are the most impressive mechanically/electronically/cosmetically engineered and designed transceivers currently and probably will remain this way in my opinion for at least another decade.
I'm not going to repeat most others comments other than the following:
GOOD - My displays have no issues.
GOOD - Everything works as it should.
UNFORTUNATE - The 3k filter design should probably been more of a 2.6/2.8k as there are many times I don't enjoy the QRM cases and the notch filtering needs to be dialed and tuned up.

PS- The Yaesu Quadra System is a PERFECT mate to this rig !!!!!!!! If you've never experienced the Quadra with an FT2000 or FTDX5000, you're missing out on the finer things in life.

73' WK9U
WB6YZZ Rating: 2014-03-30
A pleasure to use Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I'm coming from an IC-7600, from which I had a Pro-III, Kenwoods before that, and still have a Kenwood TS-2000 for mobile/portable work. I'm a homebrewer and have built several SDRs.

I recently got the 5000MP with all the options. I was sold on it because of the large knobs with some space between them. In other words ergonomics! I've been licensed since 1967 and have yearned to go back to the days of the big rigs with flywheel knobs, but not back to the old performance.

I've become a huge fan of SDR type radios with their flexible selectivity and a bandscope. But I did not want to use a computer, I wanted to use a ham radio!

I have yet to see a bandscope that can compare to the typical SDR for resolution and sensitivity. The 5K is in line with the IC7600. Both are usable and give you a look of the band, and the signals that are at least a couple S-units above the noise. That's fine with me. I'm a casual ham that likes to listen more than talk, and I like to know who my neighbor hams are. At least the 5K can scan 2.5MHz of band, meaning you can see the entire 10 Meter band. I plan on using this with converters to see the entire 2 Meter band.

I would rate this rig a 4.8 if I could. There are a few things I don't like about it, but they are relatively minor.

1- Usable bandscope.
2- Excellent receiver performance and audio quality.
3- Built in speakers are very good.
4- No need to dig into menus except on rare occasions.
5- Two separate receivers can be very powerful.
6- Class A output for feeding a linear.
7- 200W and with a built in supply.

Not so good:
1- AM selectivity is confined to 6 or 9KHz, FM to 9 and 16. The smaller bandwidths are chosen with a button (narrow) rather than the width knob like other modes.
2- It is not exactly intuitive to use. You'd think with all these independent knobs, it would be. But there are enough dual purpose buttons to annoy you at times.
3- As pointed out by others, the long knobs and buttons shade labeling of functions below them. Lighting the front to read everything takes some work.

Overall, however, this is the best radio I've ever had, fer sure. It is pleasurable to use, and doesn't slide around the table when you push a button, since it weighs 46lbs!
PD2HP Rating: 2014-03-26
Solid Transceiver Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I have the Ftdx5000MP for a little time and i am very impressed.
It's a great performer, great receiver.
Offcourse it's much different then my FlexRadio5000 i have had before buying the 5000MP.
In my "career i have never seen such a great DNR function.
Also a big pro is the clear and nice audio you can make

I am a very satisfied and proud owner of this "tank"!!
W0GXA Rating: 2014-03-21
FT5000 wins over K3 Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
In addition to the standard review, I thought I'd include a bit of background on how I selected this radio.

My last HF radio purchase was a Kenwood TS-50 21 years ago. I still have that rig and use it mobile, but it was time for something with a better receiver, better filters etc... I only operate CW, so that was the primary evaluation mode.

I chase DX and contest roughly 50/50 so a rig suited to both activities was needed. For DXing I rated having a 2nd receiver with independent filter settings to be high priority. The ability to route VFOs into separate ears was also required.

The other main criteria was price. I could afford a $5K-$6K radio max. That eliminated the IC7800, TS990 etc...

For completeness, I included the IC7600 in the mix. It does not have a 2nd RX but it has a feature called Dual Watch I wanted to consider.

I evaluated all radios myself and talked to at least two people experienced with each radio.

Summary findings:
IC7600 - I didn't like the dual watch feature. You can in fact listen to two VFOs in the same band but it's very difficult to sort out the DX station from what you're hearing in the pileup. On the plus side, radio has excellent audio and filters. Also has a nice size if you travel on DXpeditions. For a contest only radio, it's probably one of the better mid range radios.

K3 - I've used this radio the most contesting at a club station. I did a side by side compare with the IC7600 and immediately noticed the audio was more harsh sounding than the Icom. I tried settings on the Icom to make it sound as bad as the K3 and on the K3 to make it sound as good as the Icom with no luck. ...and yes, I used the same set of headphones to eliminate speakers as a variable.

I have no complaints about the receiver and filters. They perform well on crowded bands. It's also a highly capable radio with direct RTTY for example.

I could never get used to the ergonomics, nor the feel of the radio. Most of what you need is a top level control, button push or push and hold. Not a lot of need to go into the menus. In the end, though, it just didn't feel like a radio I could come home to at night and enjoy operating.

FT5000 - Receiver is on par with any of them out there and it shows. The audio is a pleasure to listen to. Ergonomics, compared to the K3 are outstanding. Specifically: I prefer having more dedicated controls. Also, I really like the RF path display for each receiver....even more so after I got the radio. I find the menus on this radio a breeze to use.

For DXing, the 2nd RX is a dream to operate. I've spent a lot of time chasing DX in pileups and have little issue following them around.

I researched the issues around clipped "dits" in QSK and OLED issues with Yaesu USA. They claim the "dits" problem and OLED issues were addressed in 2012 or earlier. My radio was made in Nov 2013, so time will tell if they fully addressed the problems.

From a pure technical performance stand point, it was a close race between the K3 and the 5000. In the end, ergonomics and the look and feel won out.

Happy to answer direct questions...see page.

VE9OX Rating: 2014-01-31
Great Radio! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Purchased my Ft-5000D new over a year ago and I find it absolutely the quietest and finest receiver I have ever heard in 35 years of Ham Radio.
Noise reduction is first rate as is the variable notch filter.
The variable Roofing filters are OK but the rig absolutley needs a 2.4Khz roofing filter for SSB.
Great audio reports are normal from the ultra clean TX with the usual Yaesu 3 band parametric EQ.
This big radio has everything at your fingertips and an easily accessible menu too.
It it is very flexible in terms of DSP item functions and filters etc.
I enjoy the SMU screen and twin speakers...a nice touch and useful.
I bought mine as a "D" model" and got the optional 300Hz CW filter which really is required for serious CW...a big difference.

I have had one sub display OLED get the dreaded white line and Jim at Yaesu sent me one no charge.
I replaced the bad OLED myself on my bench in 2 hours while sipping on a cold beer.
What can I say more than this is Yaesu's finest transceiver to date.

It's a keeper that's why I give it a 5....see you in the pileups.
A41MO Rating: 2013-11-25
Finals failed Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I had the FT dx-5000 MP that was used very sparingly and mainly for listening. Connected to a multiband dipole using the built in ATU. Used the night before and next morning the finals are gone.
Repair meant shipping to Europe. Charges were very high to repair the finals together with the shipping cost made it unattractive to repair and bring back. It was sold as such at a great loss.
K4YDN Rating: 2013-10-15
DREADED OLED PROBLEM Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've had my FT-5000 for 2 1/2 years. I love the radio but now have one of the OLED that has gone so dim I can't use it anymore. I talked to Yaesu and they said they would fix it free if it was the vertical white line problem but not if the OLED started dimming. I would not expect and LED to go bad after 2 1/2 years but they would not cover it. By the time I pay shipping from my QTH (east coast) to Calif and back I would be looking at $300.00 plus. It takes two to four hours to do the repair. There is a ham in Poland that was kind enough to do a detail photo narration of how to do this repair. You have to take the front panel off which means all the knobs and button, a lot of screw, multiple computer ribbons connections, etc, etc, etc. Amazing. I bought the parts from Yaesu and they were not expensive, but the procedure is very involved. I have not decided what to do. This will effect my resale value if I decide to sell and will keep people when they realize the potential problem from buying the 5000. I have the FT-3k at my other QTH and was thinking of selling it to buy the FT-5k but that is out of the question now. Sri for the gloom and doom report to what otherwise is a great radio. 73's, Mike