146.52 FM

Discussion in 'VHF/UHF - 50Mhz and Beyond' started by K2SOG, Dec 24, 2019.

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  1. 2E0NYH

    2E0NYH Ham Member QRZ Page

    similar discussion has been had in UK circles as a lot of our 2m contesting is on ssb so unless someone can afford a 'shack ina box' or has the means and opportunity to get ourt and about with something like ft818 or ic 705 it makes the first stesp there quite hard

    ( and yes there is the FMAC which is Fm and generally verticlally polarised)
  2. NQ1B

    NQ1B Ham Member QRZ Page

    Plenty of SSB-capable radios available used at affordable prices (a few hundred dollars).

    The market doesn't seem to be big enough to interest manufacturers.
    W9FL likes this.
  3. AF7TS

    AF7TS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Icom 9700?

    Have not used it, but it would seem to be targeting 2m and 70cm all mode users.

  4. NQ1B

    NQ1B Ham Member QRZ Page

    Was there *ever* a time in ham radio history that VHF SSB radios were available new at prices that were more affordable (in real currency adjusted for inflation) than they are now?

    I really don't think so.

    Be sure to correct for inflation. You can't just directly compare prices then and now.

    The real reason that VHF SSB radios are perceived as expensive today is not that their real prices have risen, but that a flood of cheap FM-only transceivers have changed expectations of what a radio should cost. But FM rigs are simpler to design and build than SSB equipment, and there is far more demand for FM radios in the commercial and government sectors, which allows similar designs to amortize costs over far more units.

    I don't expect to ever see a $150 2-meter new transceiver with full SSB support. There is no way a manufacturer could make money at that price.
    AI7PM and N0NB like this.
  5. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Used. That's the point. Not like the model T in which millions were produced. Of the decent used radios they maintain an exceptional price. I am sure if single band radios on six and two were produced at a decent price point they would sell quickly.
    Bandplan in a box isn't the answer here along with used radios far past their prime.
    2E0NYH likes this.
  6. AF7TS

    AF7TS Ham Member QRZ Page

    You make a very good point about the relative cost of cheap FM transceivers making other radios look more expensive.

    The technology of these cheap FM transceivers is very interesting. The chip doing the job uses IQ modulation and DSP to generate the IQ in the first place. All of the ingredients of 'software defined radio'. However the DSP code is hardwired on the chip.

    With NRE investment in the appropriate code, a similar chip could generate SSB at very low cost. The PA would need to be much more linear, increasing cost, and other changes would be required.

    However my guess is that using this sort of technology, inexpensive SSB HTs could be built if there were sufficient market to justify the NRE.

  7. NQ1B

    NQ1B Ham Member QRZ Page

    If they had sold quickly and in reasonable numbers, manufacturers would not have discontinued them without replacing them with a new model. I don't think they ever sold that well, certainly not toward the end of their runs.

    You never defined "a decent price point" anywhere in this thread. I assume you really mean "at a price point similar to FM radios".

    But the technology for FM is heavily amortized by commercial and government demand, which is the justification for those custom chips that AF7TS mentioned.

    "Sufficient market to justify the NRE" generally does not mean ham-only.

    I will continue to recommend that hams who want to try out VHF SSB (beyond 6 meters) get an IC-706Mk2G, FT-857D, or similar radio used. I paid $400 for my 706, and I don't think there was anything exceptional about that deal. I've worked many contacts on 2-meter SSB using that rig.

    Those who want better RF gear after gaining experience will upgrade to transverters connected to a modern HF radio, or purchase a used VHF SSB radio with a good reputation.
  8. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Not going to argue, I run an HF rig along with a 991a for vhf/uhf and sometimes HF. Being said I always hunt for single bands and the prices are high for a twenty year old radio, Last one I saw went for near 400 dollars. Its not unreasonable to spend the same on a new radio as its obvious from used sale what the market will accept in price. That would be profitable for whomever decides to build one. Look at 10 meter rigs in comparison.
    When you discuss price point its hard to nail down with FM rigs as the market is vast with feature laden rigs. Simple stupid single band SSB would be a market in itself. Here in the NE 2mtr SSB gets more play than the local repeaters combined and there is a ton. Being said look at what people are paying for digital FM rigs that get very little use.
  9. NQ1B

    NQ1B Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm having a friendly discussion. I don't see any argument or any need for one.

    I'm not convinced that $400 for a new VHF SSB-capable would be profitable for the manufacturer. If anyone here has actual experience in the radio manufacturing industry, I would like to know. I may be wrong about this, but haven't seen any evidence of it. Certainly when VHF all-modes were available, they cost more than $400 corrected for inflation.

    Perhaps someone should come up with an easy-to-build kit for a 2m SSB radio? I believe this could be possible for the price you quote.

    Most of those features are essentially free to the manufacturer, just software. Price has driven more by what bands are offered (dual-banders are much more expensive than 2m only) and by what modes are offered (all-modes are consistently more expensive than FM-only).

    I wish that were the case. You are in the Greater Boston metro, so you have a much higher density of hams near you than is true in my part of the Northeast.

    I rarely hear anything on 2m SSB unless there is a contest running. I have one person with whom I occasionally chat on SSB, but that's about it. It sure would be nice to have a "Vermont net" on SSB with high participation. It wouldn't take much in the way of antennas or radios to work across our little state, barring a few paths blocked by mountains.

    Our repeaters are not very busy, but they get more use than 2m SSB.
  10. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I spent a decade in Maine so I understand the situation as it was the same up there. Repeaters got more play there too. You may be right though a kit might get things started.

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