Opinions on good HF transceiver for under $500

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by KW4GT, May 19, 2017.

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  1. KW4GT

    KW4GT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've been inactive for a few years and have finally moved to a location that will let me put up an antenna farm and ham away to my hearts content. I've had my trusty Collins S-Line for over 25 years now, and while it's neat to use top notch vintage equipment I'm thinking it might be time to part ways with the S-Line and upgrade just a bit.

    I'd like to be able to get on 160, as well as 12 and 17 (maybe 60 also). A general coverage receiver would be a plus. My budget is around $500 tops (to limit the wrath of my CEO), I don't need a radio with bells and whistles - just good functionality. (It should also play nice with an SB-220 if I can ever get that project finished).

    So.... what are some good used radios I should be looking at that fit my budget?

  2. WF4W

    WF4W XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    there is a used alinco on the 'for sale' forum for $375

    I dunno, $500 is a tough budget for used, new-ish radios. I cant remember all the models of the mid-to-late 90's but Im guessing that is what you're going to get. I'd research the 'for sale' forum's past posts to see what sold and for how much so you can keep an eye out for certain rigs that have sold in your price range. good luck.
  3. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    So why not sell the S-Line and take that $2000 +/- and buy a brand-new fully featured modern radio?

    Surely if the "CEO" doesn't mind owning the asset that is the Collins, why would she care if you spent the money on a significant upgrade?

    Or just put your foot down and say you're the President and that trumps the CEO? :)

    N7ANN, WA7PRC and K9ASE like this.
  4. WF4W

    WF4W XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    are you married?

  5. WD0BCT

    WD0BCT Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'm not positive if W7UUU is married....but I think he is.

    I'm married (50th anniversary this September) and I must say that sometimes decisions must be made in the best interest of the marriage.

    I recall making the comparison of my wife's shoe collection to that of Imelda Marcos once. I don't question her purchases and she rarely questions mine. At least those not requiring a loan or mortgage! That's not a purchase...that's a commitment. ;)
    W7UUU and K9ASE like this.
  6. KW4GT

    KW4GT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Well, for instance, I've seen a few Icom IC-745's for sale recently that are within my desired budget. That model would appear to meet my needs, but I know nothing about them.

    I guess I'm looking for anyone who can chime in on rigs to avoid as well as suggestions on any solid rigs that I might otherwise overlook.

  7. AB3TQ

    AB3TQ Subscriber QRZ Page

    Since I remember this, I obviously spend way too much time reading QRZ. Mrs. Dave is a ham, and has posted (very sparingly) to QRZ.

    I just now looked up her biography. I have no idea how current the photo is, but I would like to hear her take on just one of those photos. It is a photograph of her shack in the foreground, but what is that collection of gear in the background? Dave's stuff? It doesn't take an accountant to see the disparity of investment in radio equipment between the two.

    Keep it up Dave. You're winning.
  8. WG7X

    WG7X Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    All you really need is that crystal pack, maybe? I remember them from my USS Army Mars days. Did they only work with the KWM-2? We had no problems changing crystals in those rigs to cover any 500 KHz segment.
  9. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yes - for many years.

  10. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    That's all she is interested in. She has her Baofeng UV-5R, 12v power supply, and Yaesu FT-2900. She runs Net Control for our local club from her setup. But she has no interest in HF, at least to my extent.

    I will admit it too about a year of diplomacy to get the go-ahead "for all those pipes spinning in circles :) But if it's done right and sold right, I'm convinced a lot more "CEOs" of hams could be sold on things like this than are given credit for


    [PS - she actually lurks here quite a lot but hardly ever posts]

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