Are hf radios getting too small?

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

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  1. N4CKC

    N4CKC Ham Member QRZ Page

    I do like the bigger rigs personally. My big ole 775DSP is my favorite. I do however still like my 746PRO and 7100. The smaller rigs have a purpose, for me, to operate portable or mobile. My big rig is my main QTH station, it has lots of buttons and knobs to push and turn, and who doesn't like pushing buttons and turning knobs?
    NG4F, WD5GWY and KP4SX like this.
  2. AD5MB

    AD5MB Ham Member QRZ Page

    kielbasa sized fingers need vast panels. My SWL receiver is a DX 394. I don't care a bit for radios or test equipment that require a stylus to push tiny little buttons.
    KP4SX likes this.
  3. W4NNF

    W4NNF XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I dunno. I'd say they are actually kinda on the upswing size-wise. The FT-857D and FT-891 are history and the days of mainstream rigs that freaking tiny appear to be over. I think the 7300 and 991a are of a reasonable size. However, like many of my older and shakier-handed and nearsighted brethren, I now prefer something more traditionally sized like an IC 7610 or FT-101DX. :)

    It's not so much the size per se that bothers me with the little radios, it's the lack of buttons and knobs for things I access all the time. I, for example, much--much--prefer my 7610's band buttons compared to selecting bands with the touch screen on the 7300. Nevertheless, I do love my little 7300.
  4. AE0Q

    AE0Q XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Ha, I think that could be a topic of its own :) On CW no one cares, heck the little QCX+ has a 200Hz wide filter so you go where it's clear. But while activating parks for WWFF/POTA on SSB my wife and I have gotten a few comments while CQing from a park about not being "on frequency". You squeeze in where there's room on 20m but some folks can't tune in a SSB signal unless there are zeros on the dial.
    PU2OZT, AD5HR, VK4HAT and 2 others like this.
  5. VK4HAT

    VK4HAT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Exactly, no one on CW cares, so why do the SSB CB appliance operators care so much about being on the Zero? Contesters dont care, DXers don't care, Digi Mode ops don't care, but, for some reason, there is a segment of SSB ops who lose their bloody minds if you are not on zero. Have they forgotten what RIT is for or that the big nob tunes in 1 or 10hz steps.
    WZ7U, WN1MB, AE0Q and 1 other person like this.
  6. KC2SIZ

    KC2SIZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Lately I've been making it a point to stay off the zeros.
    VK4HAT, KB1CKT, PU2OZT and 1 other person like this.
  7. K4NWD

    K4NWD Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    That "gotta be on zero" nonsense started when digital frequency counters arrived. Had nothing to do with CB.
  8. W9YW

    W9YW Premium Subscriber Volunteer Moderator QRZ Page

    I'm surprised that no one has yet used the trope:

    The optimist sees a glass half-full, the pessimist says it's half-empty, but the engineer knows that in both instances, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be, which is why we have smaller radios.

    I started off with Heathkit and Drake and Allied, and have had tons of knobs, most of them unused, except.... when I needed them.

    Now, it's a journey down a rathole of menu selections to find the right one in the midst of fading band conditions, QRM, and background noise coming from the living room. Sometimes I long for the knobs. But I also like the SDR approach of seeing signals to hunt, even a characterization of the signal in a waterfall.

    Lighter weight? The advent of the switching power supply, SMD devices, CPU-driven systems with firmware updates from Hades Itself., all of these things are modern radios. When the mobile becomes the base and reverse, things change as marketing people try to find a winner for the finicky species known as ham radio operators. Although I run an FTDX-1200, I see merits in the Icom 7300. Both weigh less than the HW-23 and 101 I used for a long time. More knobs==more choices, and when those become items to select on a menu tree, it's not as obvious or intuitive unless you've studied and memorized radio functionality, because no two brands implement menu trees similarly. Sigh.

    73 Tom W9YW
    KC1NY and WN1MB like this.
  9. VK4XJB

    VK4XJB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Rit is one control on the radio I do not use. For my use I regard it as a control to nearly always stay off. My preferred is ssb chat. Assuming everyone has a working vfo I don't see any reason why people can not tune to the same frequency which leaves no need for rit.

    For this I am ignoring those with an incorrect display or if the group is not on a 0 or 5 and someone can not handle this.
  10. VK4HAT

    VK4HAT Ham Member QRZ Page

    While mostly useful in CW, there are times on SSB when someone with older gear is off on TX but not on RX, if you change your VFO all you end up doing is chasing each other all over the band. My assumption in such cases is that the other station has me tuned in well and I just make them sound right with the RIT. In CW, well is the goto knob for anyone not at 600Hz offset.
    K8XG and PU2OZT like this.

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