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What rig changed HF the most in the last 20 years?

Discussion in 'Discussions, Opinions & Editorials' started by N3AWS, Feb 18, 2013.

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  1. N3AWS

    N3AWS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Lots of possibilities here with no wrong answer:

    What rig changed HF the most in the last 20 years?

    I'm going to say the Icom 706 (original). It brought all mode 6 and 2 meters to a lot of hams. A jack-of-all-trades to be sure, did everything but not everything particularly well.

    What's your opinion and why?
  2. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Ten Tec Jupiter and FlexRadio
  3. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I would agree with the 706. Flex Radio has changed the technology of ham radio to a considerable extent, but the 706 was wildly popular. I'd also nominate the FT-817 - all mode, all band, in a packset. I suspect that in countries with low power entry licenses, like the UK, the 817 is very popular.
  4. WC5P

    WC5P Ham Member QRZ Page

    TS-50 actually started the trend towards small HF rigs, however the 706 started the "shack in a box" craze. Clearly a 5 pound "shack in a box" doing the same job that used to take 300 pounds of boat anchors is a huge change.

    If you ask the same question 10 years from now, the answer will likely be Flex.
  5. N0NB

    N0NB Subscriber QRZ Page

    Not a rig, exactly, although these days it's getting more difficult to separate the two, but I will offer the personal computer. Initially it offered hams the opportunity to operate RTTY without noisy/oily teletype machinery. Then came the TNC and packet along with logging, both for casual and contest operations. The use of the sound card for PSK31 ignited a revolution that not only gave rise to many new digi modes and more modes of SSTV but also sent multi-mode TNCs packing. Digital voice experiments are using the same sound card interfaces.

    The increasingly affordable PC in its various forms has transformed the HF bands from being primarily phone and CW operations to now all sorts of modes occupying the HF bands. Over the nearly 30 years that I've been licensed the PC has made the greatest impact, IMO.
  6. K7MH

    K7MH Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'd go with that too. I ran out and bought one the first chance I had. It was a nice replacement for an Atlas 310X!!

    I'd go with that too. I ran out and bought one the first chance I had. It was a nice replacement for a TS-50!!:p

    I was interested in the 706 since it had the remote head and also had 6 meters. I still have the 706Mk2.

    HF rigs having 6 meters in them was a big change and added a lot of new hams to the 6 meter crowd.
  7. M6RIK

    M6RIK Ham Member QRZ Page

    The Yaesu FT-817 gets my vote. The little radio with BIG performance. It's by no means perfect but the number of QSO's I have had where the voice in the other end simply can't believe that i'm using 5 watts or less and usually on some make shift antenna made from an old washing line.

  8. K8GU

    K8GU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Ten-Tec Orion.
  9. NN3W

    NN3W Ham Member QRZ Page

    Going to say the FT-1000D. One of the first radios with two fully operational and independent VFOs and two receivers.
  10. K9XR

    K9XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    And 20 years later they still hold their own in the real world!

  11. K8GU

    K8GU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I was going to say that also, but since it was released in 1989, it's a little more than 20 years. So, if it's an elastic 20 years, I say 1000D. If it's hard 20 years, I say Orion.
  12. N3AWS

    N3AWS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Very surprized the K3 hasn't been mentioned yet....
  13. KC8VWM

    KC8VWM Ham Member QRZ Page


    When they left, everything changed.
  14. KG5UN

    KG5UN Ham Member QRZ Page

    The Yaesu FT-767 was the first real "shack in a box" rig.
    Built in power supply, auto-tuner and slots for 6 meter, 2 meter and 70 cm modules.
    A real beauty!
  15. N0AZZ

    N0AZZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Has to be Elecraft and there entry with the K lines of radios, many records broken with a "Kit" radio the K2. A new standard was set when the K3 was introduced and still stands today in many of it's features.
  16. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Subscriber QRZ Page

    What about this one:
    Supposedly this freed up a lot of amateur bandwidth :p
  17. WC5P

    WC5P Ham Member QRZ Page

    LOL, Yep, I still have my TS-50, AND my 706, plus I now have an IC-7000.

    Not sure if there is any cure for this sickness, HI.

    Check my signature line ........
  18. W6TMI

    W6TMI XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Some of you are naming nice radios, but I don't see how they changed anything. As in made a fundamental difference in operation.

    I would have to 2nd the guy that said the PC, with it adding digital modes and decoding.

    The micro processor/controller. similar to the computer, but more referring to embedded uCs. Allowing for automation such as auto antenna tuners/couplers station diagnostic tools, etc.

    The icom pro series with it's signal graph perhaps changed signal acquisition. (Assuming they're the first to put that on the rigs).

    The 706 may have cleaned up folks cars but doubt it really changed anything. You just had 2 or more rigs.

    Transistors, specifically high powered ones. Solid state rigs/amps negated having to tune plate/load output finals. (And saved a generation the wonder of being thrown across the room on touching a plate voltage source).
  19. M0WAO

    M0WAO Ham Member QRZ Page

    KX3 by far ;)
  20. W8ZNX

    W8ZNX Ham Member QRZ Page

    i agree

    do not think that any rig within the last 20 years
    changed anything at all
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