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Are hf radios getting too small?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by NG4F, Aug 8, 2021.

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  1. NG4F

    NG4F Ham Member QRZ Page

    I just seen a 991a Yaesu at a friends. Once I worked on a 7300 for another friend. Are the radios today getting too tiny? The 7300 is just a little bigger than a mobile cb. I like the feeling of setting next to a big huge radio with 100 buttons on it. Does anybody else feel this way or is it just me?
    N2UHC, N8VIL, N8RKD and 1 other person like this.
  2. PA5COR

    PA5COR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I also have a FT2000-D big enough with most settings having knobs on the front.
    The FT991A has a menu i am used to, most settings are one time set and forget, rest is available on the front.
    Small? yes suits me fine being in the livingroom with limited space, does all i want in all mode from 160 to 70 cm so yes it was a choice i made.
    Having this format of radio it is easier to use on a field day or going out portable, put in the car or whatever you fancy.
    Buying an radio it will be part of your choice, the size of the radio like many oter demands you may have for your radio.'
    Enough new or young time radio's out there big in size.
    PY2RAF, KA0USE and NG4F like this.
  3. G8FXC

    G8FXC XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I think the designs are getting close to being too small. I have both a 7300 and a 991A - the 7300 is quite ergonomic because ICOM make much better use of the touch screen than Yaesu do. For some reason, Yaesu are very opposed to initiating operations by touching the screen and that results in a crowded front panel. On the 7300, if I want to change frequency or mode, I touch the frequency or mode display on the screen and that triggers the display of the corresponding data entry screen. On the 991A, there are dedicated front panel buttons for "Band" and "Mode" - you have to press one of them to bring up the data entry screen - those two buttons are both completely unnecessary.

    I guess that part of the reason is down to trends in living. Houses are getting smaller and more people are living in apartments with no garden to speak of. In my youth, my shack was in a garden shed and I answered to nobody else. These days, I've had to downsize and I share a "hobbies room" with my wife. I used to buy large radios - FT-2000, TS-2000, FT-847 etc. etc. and I liked the big front panels with large numbers of buttons dedicated to single functions. Now I have just one desk and I have to fit my radio life onto it. The FT-2000 occupied 50% of it on its own! The 7300 and 991A side by side are no bigger than the old FT-2000 but fit in a lot more functionality.

    Does it matter? Not too much to me, at least. As radios have become smaller, they have also become far more computer compatible - and a lot of good PC software has been developed to drive them. The front panels on my two radios are very rarely touched - I have a reasonably well specified tower PC on the floor under the desk connected to two large monitors on arms above the desk. The two radios, together with an SDRPlay RSP1A SDR receiver, are connected to the PC via USB cables and I operate the entire station via the mouse, keyboard and screens. I used to have to touch the power switches, but the power supplies are now connected to smart plugs - I open the door and command "Alexa, turn on the shack please" and it all magically jumps into life!

    Martin (G8FXC)
    AG5DB, NG4F and PA5COR like this.
  4. NG4F

    NG4F Ham Member QRZ Page

    I too own a ts-2000, and for me its on the edge of being too small. Its just not the same for me when I key down on my 765, which is a LARGE radio in size. I kinda wish the manufactures would go back to a larger case radio. Maybe they could make a large case, and a small
    WD4IGX likes this.
  5. US7IGN

    US7IGN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Different radios for different purposes. Everyone has the choice to buy a large or small radio. There are enough of both on the market.
    N3RYB likes this.
  6. W5IEI

    W5IEI Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have an FTDX 101 and a 7300 and like both just fine.
    W7UUU likes this.
  7. KC3RN

    KC3RN Ham Member QRZ Page

    If you think the 991 and 7300 are too small, try using an FT-817.... ;)

    I love the ergonomics of my old TS-530, but it's just too big for my operating position. My 7300 fits the space nicely.
    KE0NXO, F8WBD, KC7JNJ and 2 others like this.
  8. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Small radios are DESIGNED for portability or to be used mobile. But that's partly due to use use of SMD components, and a desire ((either by engineers, marketing bigwigs, or both) to add all kinds of "bells and whistles" into the smallest package possible. (Ego may well play a part.)
    The recent Kemwood radios (TS590, TS890, TS990) aren't exactly "small" or "mini" radios, but seem "just about right."
  9. W2AI

    W2AI QRZ Lifetime Member #240 Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    Does size really matter???:eek::eek:
    N3RYB and KI5WW like this.
  10. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Apparently, size DOES matter, at least to some.:(

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