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Reviews For: Yaesu FRG-7

Category: Receivers: General Coverage

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Review Summary For : Yaesu FRG-7
Reviews: 54MSRP: 300.00
General Coverage Receiver
Product is not in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
PU4BEF Rating: 2023-05-07
Rádio incrível Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Gosto muito dessa máquina, muito bem construído capaz de de entregar ótimas recepções!
IW2NZR Rating: 2020-09-05
A great companion Time Owned: more than 12 months.
A great companion on my writing desk. I use it for broadcasting listening and now, with the bands almost desert, even for dx-ing, thanks to its low noise floor and its excellent sensitivity. Despite less selective than my other FLL (Wadley Loop) receiver Barlow Wadley XCR-30, I love the audio of this reliable "toy"! Mine is labelled "Sommerkamp".
COMMSEEKER Rating: 2020-02-20
Great analogue receiver ! Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I bought this receiver home and the audio IC chip went.
The sound was dead, so I went to a radio repairer and got that fixed, then the two main boards re-soldered, also all re-capped, radio re-aligned, all switches, controls sprayed, couple of RF chokes replaced, couple of audio caps replaced and all the old light bulbs replaced with nice LED's.
The radio works fantastic and nice and sensitive.
While it does not have all the fancy bells and whistles of modern receivers, I just add a FRT-7700 antenna tuner and an Autek QF-1A audio filter - this combo adds LP/HP and Notch and Peak capabilities to the receiver plus the tuner helps match the wire antenna to the desired frequency.
I have a killer combo !
The Peak filter I am able to peak a ham operator and make it a cleaner signal with reduced noise, but I cant go to far with that else I loose the clarity of the signal.
The notch I am able to notch out utility stations or CW stations interfering with my ham station catch.
All in all a 5 out of 5 rating for a lovely analogue radio without all the computerised trouble from modern receivers.
G8UBJ Rating: 2019-12-24
Still good after 50 years Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Still widely available second hand but after 50 years you have to watch the condition. I own a number of Wadley Loop receivers and this is in my opinion the best non commercial implementation of the era.

I wouldn't normally recommend a receiver of this age to start out but I would with this. Its a little more interesting and fun to use compared to the switched band-pass PLL units that followed...

Mine is in near mint condition with only the Green/red led modification which I would recommend to anyone as it makes tuning the Mhz VFO so much simpler.
KC0EKQ Rating: 2017-11-05
Good, solid radio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I remember when I first saw the FRG-7 in a radio magazine (I can't recall which).

I thought it was one of the best looking receivers I'd ever seen, and the reviews seemed to be very positive.

So when I had the funds ready, I finally got an FRG-7... and I found out there is more to this rig than its good looks. :)

I happen to be a fanatical knobulator -- I dig turning and switching and tuning and just basically knobulating -- and the tuning system/method of the FRG-7 is a perfect match for me. It's not complicated, to be sure. It just requires a bit of... well, knobulation!

I like the audio it exhibits, though I know some find it a little muffled or bassy. I guess that's just personal tastes, of course, but I find the audio quite nice. And plenty loud if you need it!

For AM-mode program listening, it is a simply good, solid rig. Better than some, not as good as others, as always.

But SSB listening is a bit of a chore -- tuning in a SSB signal is very precise and tight, and the radio drifts quite noticeably until it has warmed up for a while, maybe an hour or so, honestly. Even after warm up, however, it will drift, only less dramatically. It's not my favorite radio for listening to amateur signals, and I don't think I've even switched on the SSB mode in a decade or more.

FRG-7 models with the Fine Tuning knob/feature -- not all units have it -- are obviously going to be a bit easier to tune precisely, and mine does have that feature -- in fact I modified mine with the 'finer fine tuning' mod -- but it doesn't change the drift issue, just makes it a bit easier to deal with. It's not a deal-breaker, or really terrible, but it can be annoying after a time.

There are other modifications for this radio, and all seem pretty useful, though I haven't done them nor have I felt the need to do them, the radio is very good just as it is.

I'm a little baffled by the current average prices I have been seeing for them on certain internet auction sites. They seem high to me. Although the receiver is top notch for an analogue unit, and it is heavy and shipping is only getting more expensive as time marches on, the price just seems to be more about the name and reputation than its actual, real-world performance, which is solid good but not what I would consider *great*, and certainly not at those prices.

If you find one at a bit lower price, do yourself a favor and grab it. It IS a very good radio and you will definitely enjoy using it.
WB0FDJ Rating: 2017-11-04
Built to last Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I bought this 30 years ago at a dealer and it was a used item then. I listened to it just noodling around the SW bands and doing some late night AM dxing, just like when I was a kid. Over time it got relegated to the shelf and I'd bring it out now and then for a trip around the block.

Today I got the old girl out, cleaned some switches and pots and fired her up. I'm listening to a station on 20 meter CW and the copy is actually very good. This is a reasonably sensitive receiver with absolutely no bells and whistles. It has very nice audio and I like the built in speaker. Built like a tank and it's given me no trouble at all in the last three decades. Yes it's wide enough to drive a truck through, a lot of the GC all purpose radio's were back in the day. Hey I cut my teeth on copying other novices on 40 CW with a Heathkit HR-10B in the summer of '71. Even today with my newer rigs I often forget to use my filters: just use the Type One, Mod Zero original CPU that sits between my ears.

Not just nostalgia. It's a good radio doing it's thing long after it's day. I'm thinking of pairing it with my HT-40 and reliving the old days: it's good enough for that.

VA3YNK Rating: 2017-09-01
A Great Receiver! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Although there are some shortcomings with this receiver as stated elsewhere, I find them an absolute joy to operate.
The audio is a lot more pleasant to listen to through the stock speaker on the FRG-7 than most of my other receivers/transceivers.
With an adequate horizontal run of wire, you'll be amazed at what you can pull out. I've done quite a few side by side comparisons with several much higher priced radios and although lacking a lot of the bells and whistles, the FRG-7 continually amazes me. AM broadcast band DX'ing is phenomenal.
I have Realistic Minimus 7 speakers wired up to two of my FRG-7's and the audio is fantastic to my hearing.
I currently own 6 of these receivers which get regular use and am always on the lookout to add more to the stable.
If you can find a good working one for around $150-$175, you can't go wrong for this well built and fun to use receiver.
VK2JEM Rating: 2017-07-25
Every shack should have one Time Owned: more than 12 months.
You know its and FRG7, the VW Beetle of radios.

ITs basic, no frills not an exceptional performer, but it works. It wont let you down it does what it should and will continue to when all the others are dead and buried.

And its kind of fun to play with every now and then in the same way its fun to tootle round in a VW beetle once every now and then, but if its your only choice to use day in day out you would want to spend more for newer or better.

Yep a classic but you can get newer better smaller cheaper.
WS9T Rating: 2015-08-25
HI FI Audio Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I do not like muddy sounding radios, which some call pinched audio. Connect this radio to a good speaker and you have great sound. Yes the IF band width is wide, but for me that is good, it lets the high notes through. Music sounds almost HiFi with a good speaker. If I want SSB, CW, or narrow AM there are a lot of radios out there. But it is hard to find one that sounds good on music, producing all the highs and lows.
It is not only a great sounding radio with a good speaker, but it is selective and can pull in the weak stations. I have 2 and I am looking for a 3rd.
K4CMD Rating: 2014-05-20
Who says you can't go back? Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I still remember it like it was yesterday. A 12-year-old kid, just getting interested in ham radio, the proud owner of a cheap Science Fair shortwave kit from Radio Shack, bumming around Sears with my dad one Saturday in 1977. Suddenly I spot something big and black on display near the CB radios. What is it? Well, once I discovered the "Sears FRG-7," my dad had to peel me away from it a half-hour later. Not even a teenager, I couldn't even imagine the $350 it would take to own one.

Fast-forward 36 years. Now I'm 48, got a place of my own, an Extra-Class license and a respectable little ham station. But something's been missing all these years: Even though I've been as much an SWL as a ham, I've never acquired much more than a handheld shortwave receiver. OK, my HF rig does the job, but it's not the same. What I want is that receiver whose lights and dials still shine brightly in my distant memory.

A trip to that year's local hamfest turns into the fulfillment of that dream. A few tables over from mine is a guy selling the real Yaesu version of the radio for $170. Not only is it in excellent working condition, there's not one scratch, dent or blemish on it anywhere. This thing looks like it just came out of the box.

Fast-forward another year, to today. I have probably had the FRoG on and used it more in the past year than my HF radio. This little sucker is everything I ever hoped it would be. Sure, it can't beat all the performance and features of today's radios. But who's expecting it to? It's 35 years old! That said, it does pretty darned admirably! (Sadly, its wide filtering probably would NOT do so well if the shortwave bands were as crowded with S9+40 signals as they were 10 years ago!)

I've found this radio really shines on the MW (AM broadcast) band at night. (Remember to set the jumper correctly on the antenna terminals if you're feeding the radio with coax, if you expect to hear anything.) I frequently listen to the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville like it's a local station here in Richmond. The Wadley Loop design in this radio really does keep the blasting and fading to a minimum, the radio is spot-on frequency nearly everywhere, and everything works as it should.

But lemme tell ya, friends, where this radio REALLY shines. Turn off the lights, power up the FRoG, and watch the radio cast its glow around the room. All of a sudden I'm that kid again, hunkered down over my little radio after everyone else has gone to bed, dreaming of big radios and far-away places. This radio is a time machine that Yaesu built to stand the test of time. Sorry for waxing poetic here ... but this is THE best $170 I have ever spent in this hobby. Get one while you can and let it take you back.