View Full Version : Icom IC-735 vs Icom IC-718

11-23-2007, 04:33 AM
I am considering either purchasing a used Icom IC-735 or possibly going with a new IC-718. Has anyone used both rigs and could comment on their impression of both and which you would choose? I'm trying to save a few bucks, but am wondering if spending a bit more for the newer 718 would be the better way to go. Anyone with experience with both of these rigs?

11-23-2007, 03:16 PM
I have not used the IC-735 but have used a IC-725 for years. It grew old an started to have problems with its freq stabilization circuits. I really enjoyed the older model Icom. It had a real clear recieve audio. They probally are easier to repair than the new ones if needed.
I have since aquired a IC-718 back in March 2007. I myself am not looking back. The 718 is a better radio. 73's KD5TAT

11-23-2007, 03:31 PM
I dont know the IC-735, but I do know the 718....It's quite a good value. It has worked better than I expected. They also can be found used to save you some money. I would suggest getting a filter for it, or find one used that has a filter with it. They (718) are a pretty good little rig, simple and work well for the price. I plan on upgrading, but will keep mine for portable and/or mobile operation.

11-23-2007, 06:46 PM
I ran a Kenwood TS-120, the unit just befofe the TS-130- The TS-130 is similar in age and features the the IC-735 (If I recall correctly). The problem with these rigs is not performance, 100W is 100W, but rather the age of the unit. Its getting to be a senior piece of equipment.

For not much more you can get a 718 new. I have one and am 110% please with it- Has plenty of features, performance is great and reliability is excellent! I have no plans on upgrading my 718 in the near or far future! I have a Donner Digital interface and run PSK with it if I wish, adjustable RF out so I can run QRP CW- The DSP is no biggie, but if you run CW get a filter soon or get an external filter.

Bottom line, IMHO, if you get a 718 you will never regret it!

The 735 would be a fine radio alibit it's reliability due to age but it will put out a signal. I would go this rout if there was a tight budget and no foreseeable change in that status.

Lastly, HamCity.com is where I get my gear, outstanding customer service and fast shipping.

Good luck,

11-23-2007, 10:45 PM
Buy an IC 718, read all the reviews, its the best tranxeiver for the money.
The 735 is an old rig now and parts may not be available if you need them.

My six quids worth !


11-24-2007, 02:27 AM
Thanks guys! I really appreciate the advice. I've been out of ham radio for a few years and now getting back into it, it's great to have a forum to ask questions of and get some feedback.

I think I will try to convince the YL (she's licensed as well so I can't use the XYL label) that I really need this and that it would be a great investment. At least it will keep me off the streets and at home. She's got to agree to that, right?

Again, thank you!


11-24-2007, 05:12 AM
Oh, almost forgot a very important question since I am planning on some QRP operation.

Will the IC-718 turn down to 5 watts output on it's lowest setting? Hopefully it will. Someone who has one could perhaps clue me in on this. Thanks again!


11-24-2007, 06:42 AM
Brad, yes... I have the 718 (see above, wont part with it for the love of money) and it will tune from zero to 100 watts and all places between. It is a simple menu option and turn the dial to the desired output.

However, a watt meter is necessary, you cant use the rig's meter for a definitive measure.

The rig's built in SWR meter is however very good (as is the ALC).

The rig's watt meter doesnt scale like you would expect- you would have to just see it to understand-

Good luck,

11-24-2007, 06:43 AM
If u want, I can shoot and post a video of this- No problem, just ask. Im pretty busy but if you want to see what Im talking about I dont mind taking the time for you.


11-24-2007, 06:51 AM
Im guessing you mean QRP CW- Heres a vid of the 718 in CW, but 100w- you get the idea anyway. FullBkIn


11-24-2007, 04:36 PM
735's are pretty bulletproof, I have to recommend them unless you're a serious phone op - there's no selection for different ssb widths. PBT is good though and makes up for it.

Good radio that unfortunately has a couple of dumb design decisions, that STUPID FLIMSY DOOR being #1.

Still, I'll never sell mine.
Pretty easy to fix, too, with the service manual.

11-25-2007, 05:22 AM
W4INF-- thanks for posting the video! That was great! It was nice to see the rig in action.

I took the plunge today and ordered the IC-718. They will ship it Monday and I should have it the next day.

In the meantime, it's up into the attic (I live in a condo and no outside antennas are permitted) for me tomorrow and get the antenna installed. It should be fun as I have to walk on the rafters as there is no floor installed up there! If I work on antennas very often, guess what's getting flooring installed?

Again, thanks much for the info and advice, I appreciate it.


11-26-2007, 03:06 AM
Ok, yet another dumb question.

It appears that the 718 allows only one additional filter. If you add the 500 hz CW filter, does it affect the SSB reception or is there already an SSB filter on this rig?

I have heard of a W4RT filter that evidently replaces the SSB built-in filter and adds a 500 hz CW fitler. Anyone tried this? Anyone installed it themselves or should this be left to W4RT? Thanks in advance.


11-26-2007, 03:28 PM
As it comes from the factory, the IC-718 has two filters in the second IF. #The first, FI-1301, is 6kHz wide and in all modes, including AM, the signal passes through it.

The second, FI-611 (also know as the Murata) is 2.4 kHz wide. #In SSB, CW, and RTTY the signal passes through it, but in AM, it bypasses it. #In my opinion, the factory Murata filter is fine for SSB, but then I mostly use CW. #Then there is the optional filter position.

If you're going to work CW, it won't be long at all before you want either the Icom FL-52a (500 Hz) or the InRad 400 Hz filter (set up in the power-up menu as a FL-52a) in the optional filter position. #Both companies also offer a 250 Hz filter, and while better for contesting, where you can use the narrow width, it requires a little slower tuning not to miss calls when just ragchewing. #I used the InRad 400 Hz, about $25 cheaper, a little narrower, and with steeper sides than the FL-52a. #

Once you install it, you can set the power-up menu for it and have a N (narrow) filter option on CW and RTTY. #When N is selected in those modes, the signal goes through the optional filter rather than the 2.4 kHz Murata.

I have no experience with the W4RT filters.

11-26-2007, 04:00 PM
Congrats on ordering the 718. You wont be disappointed, again it's a great value. Antenna's are so very important and you may want to try a few designs to see what works well in your situation.

The first time I listtened to a 718 was at a dealer in the middle of a industrial/commercial area. I live in more of a rural area and there was much better performance in my QTH. No I am improving my antennas and have had some excellent dx along with great signal reports. Good antennas are key.

I also have the Inrad 400 cw filter and it helps a lot. This is a great site if you have questions. There are also a number of Yahoo groups around the IC-718 users. There you can be very specific with questions and get answers from users around the world.

Good luck & enjoy!

11-30-2007, 08:05 PM
I have a 718 and it is one of the best value for money rigs around. If you are happy to have a rig without FM it will suit you fine. The menu system #in the 718 is quite easy to follow and it is a very user friendly tranceiver. After owning the 718 for over two yearsI wouldn't part with it. Recently I decided to replace my old Yaesu vhf and uhf rigs with a radio that would cover everything so decided to get a 706mk2G but will keep the 718 because it works so well.
Murray ZL1DOM

12-27-2007, 05:54 PM
Quote[/b] (WA3PAK @ Nov. 23 2007,19:27)]Thanks guys! I really appreciate the advice. I've been out of ham radio for a few years and now getting back into it, it's great to have a forum to ask questions of and get some feedback.

I think I will try to convince the YL (she's licensed as well so I can't use the XYL label) that I really need this and that it would be a great investment. At least it will keep me off the streets and at home. She's got to agree to that, right?

Again, thank you!

That excuse worked for me. I guess it worked for you also. The first thing your going to notice, at least on SSB, is the DSP filter option in receive. Once you've used it there will be no going back to older radios.


Frank http://www.qrz.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif

12-28-2007, 05:03 PM
I have a 735, but not a 718.
I can tell you, however, that the 718 looks a little less intimidating than the 735, and is more compact.

My 735 was made in 1987, and it still works great!

My 2c....


01-28-2008, 02:39 AM
i love my 718 for the money and what you actually get for the $$$!!!!!!!! i use the ldg at-7000 interfaced with mine. great combination

01-28-2008, 09:43 AM
735 - old technology

718 - new technology

new is better old could be or is getting hard to get parts for.

new is better.....Mac

01-31-2008, 02:08 PM
IC-718 is my first HF rig. It's cheaper and easy to oparte and suit for new hand.

02-08-2008, 04:41 PM
I recently reieved the Icom 718 for christmas. It is a very nice radio and it is very cheap. It is very easy to operate and fun to use. The dsp works great and the audio is very good. All the buttons that you need are all on the front panel of the radio and they are very easy to use. It's got everything you need in my opinion to do some great dx. :D

02-08-2008, 06:26 PM
Yes sir, I have heard that it is a very good rig. I am planning to buy a new one near the end of March. It will be my first HF rig. With $50.00 of coupon, the price is around $550.00.

02-13-2008, 04:08 PM
I wrestled with a similar issue, choosing between a perfectly good but used Kenwood TS-50 and a new Icom 718. I opted for the 718 because of the $50 rebate, AND, the Icom warranty. I also modified my 718 for MARS operation and in doing so found it also works great in 60-meters. Moreover, it's a great QRP rig aas it can be turned down to 5 watts, even down to .900-milliwatts if you're into QRPp. The only complaint is that it needs a CW filter BAD! I'm planning on installing one in the next month or so.
Tom, WY3H

02-13-2008, 06:42 PM
I agree with those who say the IC-718 is a better choice. I have the 735. It's a great radio. Parts are going to be harder to come by and it has no DSP. Still with an MFJ DSP unit, it's an amazing performer. But given the choice right now, I may like the 735, but I'd choose the 718. I have the 250 filter for it. It works very good but you have to have a good hand tuning while it's on. Unless you work a very busy band in an region with a lot of stations, I'd go for the 500/400Hz CW filter. The DSP will clean up what's left.;)

02-13-2008, 07:43 PM
I too am interested in this model when this stimulus package check comes through. Isnt there some kind of problem with the AGC or ALC control that people have been complaining about? I also understand that the receiver is also a general coverage shortwave receiver too. That is a big plus..

02-16-2008, 01:51 AM
I too am interested in this model when this stimulus package check comes through. Isnt there some kind of problem with the AGC or ALC control that people have been complaining about? I also understand that the receiver is also a general coverage shortwave receiver too. That is a big plus..

I have had my IC-718 for two months and it suits me fine. The AGC is a bit fast on SSB & CW on strong signals. Although right now strong signals are hard to find on the HF bands :( If I encounter a strong signal I just back the RF gain down. That eliminates the choppy audio.

One thing I have found with the 718. It has the Noise Reduction which can be adjusted from 0-15 in the menu setting. I find that any adjustment past 3 starts to distort the rcve audio. So I rarely set it much past 3. It does a great job of reducing local line noise when set to 15, but you just can not understand anyone's audio.

The NB is useless IMO. Then again it is designed for ignition noise, not line noise. I have owned a Drake TR3, FT101B, TS520S, Hallicrafters SX117 rcve, Drake 2 B and an Icom 720A. The NB on any of those rigs did nothing to reduce line noise, so the IC-718 is no different.

I currently use an old Icom SM5 desk mic on my 718. I friend heard me on the air the other day on 75 M. He called to tell me I sounded the same on the air as I do in person. So that desk mic works great with the 718. Mic gain is set at 25 in the menu. On the mic at 1/4 of the setting. I have had a long AM QSO on 75 M with this setup and was told I had very good audio. No one has ever complained about my audio on SSB. So if you can find a SM5 or SM6 for a good price buy it and use it.

I control my rig with Ham Radio Deluxe and a G4ZLP interface. For an investment of $17 I turn the rig on and do not touch it again unless I need to use the RIT. Most of the common settings I need to adjust can be done with the software.

I use a LDG AT-7000 auto tuner with the 718, works great.

My Dad has an Icom 735 and that rig has served him well. But when you can buy a new 718 for under $600 and have a 2 year warranty then it makes more sense to do that. Other than the lack of FM and 6 Meters it is a pretty good rig, with enough bells and whistles to make it a decent performer.

02-16-2008, 09:09 PM
At this point you might want to wait to see what the price on the NEW Icom IC-7200 will be:;)
I believe this to be Icoms answer to Yaesu's FT-450:
Which BTW has a $250.00 cupon..Good buy.:eek:
If the 7200 is a replacement for the 718 watch for the closeout sale.:cool:


02-20-2008, 04:55 PM
I have the W4RT dual filter. In the 718 Yahoo moderated Group there is general agreement that the collins SSB replacement filter helps some but does not work miracles. You also would probably not want to install the dual yourself. The install charge they have is very low, however. The 500 cycle filter does however sound very sweet and no ringing. If you go with a single 500 or 300 collins filter, it is not difficult to install yourself, and both are under $120.00 each.

I went with the dual as I do not expect to ever sell my 718. Nice and simple rig to operate. The built in keyer does not have a lot of bells and whistles, but works far better than my MFJ.

There is a mod that will help the stock mic quite a bit from what I have read, but I use an old architect lamp for a boom with the Heil ICM. The heil will allow you to use PTT, foot switch, or Vox all at the same time without having to touch the rig.

To answer your other question, a single CW filter does not affect the Murata.

03-22-2008, 10:41 PM
much better IC 735 this radio has triple super heterodyne. very good RX. As good as Kenwood TS 930S. IC 718 was very noisy.( with optional DSP card) i have three of them. and i sold the Icom IC 718. For TX was Great....For RX o o noisyyyyyy... I tried 3 radios IC 718 at the same time .its come the same.NOISYYYY. CHEEP RADIO w / bad component.
I have Collins KWM 2A,Kenwood TS 830M, Yaesu FT 757,FT 80C,Kenwood TS 440S,450s, Harris RF 3200,Yaesu FT 101 B,Icom M710,Icom IC 735.Icom M700,
I love Icom M700. its Power full more than 200w ssb output. Its marine radio. For RX Kenwood TS 830M.
DONOT BUY BAD RADIO> buy good one
73 Agus Winarno YD1TDL

12-11-2008, 12:15 AM
I have an Icom 735 and just love it! The rig is a bit old and Icom no longer carries replacement parts, but in my opinion it is far and away superior to the Icom 718. First, the 735 has both the PBT and an IF Notch, the 718 has an optional DSP, but I think the 735 has it beat. I have been able to get rid of adjacent frequency splatter of 50db with the PBT and Notch combo. Second, I think the AGC control on the 718 is way too fast for SSB, it can be slowed with a mod, but as it comes out of the box, AGC is way to fast. Third, the 735 goes for about $400 on the used market compared to the new price of $650-$700 for a 718. The only drawbacks I found with the 735 are the plastic trim pots will get gummed up with wax goo over time if the unit is exposed to extreme heat, the little smoke colored door will grow legs and walk off, the lithium battery will need to be replaced if the radio is left unused for a long time, and the panel lights tend to burn out because they are not LED's. All of these are minor, but they are something to consider. Overall, the 735 is an excellent value with a lot more bang for the buck.

12-11-2008, 04:08 PM
compared to the new price of $650-$700 for a 718.

Just a side note, most authorized resellers have them under $625 or so new. (hamradiooutlet has them for 619) Icom also is offering a $50 rebate and it comes with the UT-106 DSP already installed.


12-17-2008, 07:04 PM
I ran a 718 in the shack from June 2004 until March 2007 when I moved from where I was living and took my station down. Over that time I made 4,059 QSO's (mind you the last year I didn't get on very much because I was working and going to school). I loved the radio, I am using an IC-756Pro3 that is in my office at the Non-profit where I work now but the 718 is on a shelf in here and ready to go. I will probably use it again during ARRL field day. I have never used the 735, but can vouch for the 718.

04-05-2010, 01:47 AM
I've owned 735 for many years, then I bought 718. What can I say - I'm listening to 40m band right now using The Great ic-735 and there is no ic-718 in my shack.
718 is good radio for SSB and FM ragchewing , but as for me, ic-735 with additional filters has much better receiver and is very good for CW DXing.

My 1/2 cent :)

04-17-2010, 08:13 PM
718 is good radio for SSB and FM ragchewing ,
Did you 718 have FM? Those in the UK have AM not FM. You were lucky.

05-28-2010, 12:42 AM
I Bought Mine 12-09 on qth.com for $375..Looks New & Works Great!

REMEMBER..Just Because You See It Advertised At A Price, Does Not Mean

They Won't Take Less!:D

08-30-2010, 11:44 PM
Sorry to resurrect an old thread but I have both of these radios, 718 and 735.

The 735 came to me broken, the RCA port for receive had a bad solder joint on the back, and 0.1-8Mhz was not working, as well as 22-30Mhz was not working. Rig was also .3 off on the VFO.

Went in, wiggled the VCO caps on each of those two, and magically, everything was working again. I re-soldered the RCA joint which eliminated that problem. Re-aligning the rig was easy easy easy. Go in, turn on the tone generator, tune to 10Mhz, and zero beat WWV. I also opened it up for 60m and MARS.

The 735 is VERY easy to work on and it's a tank.

I have the 718 also, and it's basically just a receiver, and a transmitter; nothing more.

Once I got this 735, the 718 hasn't been turned on and it's sitting on the counter not plugged in at all.

I would never buy a 718 for the price it's at. If you wanted a rig for that price, the Yaesu 450 is a hell of a lot more radio than the 718. 718 is very noisy, bad receive, and very very bland. DSP is absolutely terrible and does absolutely nothing but give you useless noise reduction. Preamp adds 100% more noise, where the 735 will actually give you the ability to hear the other station when it's turned on. In fact, I keep the preamp on when I'm using the 735. I would NEVER be able to do that on the 718.

Plus on the 735 you have the notch filter which is KILLER.

Newer does NOT equal better. The only time I would ever recommend somebody a 718 over a Yaesu 450 would be if they wanted a bland radio that's impossible for people to mess up on say...field day. I'd say the 718 is worth about $350-$400 as a very very low end beginners transceiver.

11-29-2010, 01:43 AM
Just Googled "IC-735" and saw this thread. Have had mine for 6 months, purchased from 3rd owner. In 10/2008 the prior owner did have 4 VCO caps replaced, and the VCO, PLL and reference oscillator were adjusted (cost $20 parts and $100 labor). The unit was manufactured in April 1986.
Have been using it for mostly CW dxing, and am very satisfied with its performance. The receive section is outstanding, and I purchased and installed the 500 HZ FL-32 filter about 3 months ago. It really does an excellent job augmenting the outstanding PBT and notch filters of the IC-735.
Its production run made it one of the most prolific HF transceivers in amateur radio.
You can't go wrong with this one.

12-04-2010, 04:23 PM
Just put a deposit down on a used 718 after reading quite a few reviews. I do see your point about the 450 but here in the UK the 450 is significantly more expensive, and I couldn't justify the cost at this stage.