Can anyone vouch for the mfj 2m ssb rig?

Discussion in 'VHF/UHF - 50Mhz and Beyond' started by KK4YWN, Nov 15, 2014.

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  1. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Looks like fun. Seems kinda spendy but way way cheaper than an 817.

    If the 817 reciever is anything like the 857 I can't recommend it. Just too broadbanded. Needs serious filtering.
  2. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    The MFJ rigs sound good on the air (on SSB), nice modulation quality. But their filtering isn't better than the FT-817 or FT-857.

    It's an "all analog" rig, nothing digital. For about $300, it's pretty limited in what it can do (2m SSB only, I think 300 kHz coverage, analog tuning dial so you're never sure exactly what frequency you're on) but might make a cool backpack/portable rig for SOTA and similar operations.

    I don't own one, so no real first-hand experience but do hear them on the air occasionally.
  3. N3AWS

    N3AWS Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've worked a few folks who were using the 6 meter version and they sounded OK. Do not believe I have had a QSO with anyone on 2 meters SSB using the MFJ rig, but for the last 10 years or so there seems to be very little SSB on 2 in the Gulf Coast region and what there is primarily represents folks I've already worked.

    But the price isn't too bad. So if you don't want to invest in a multi band multi mode used rig, you might want to give it a try. Get a good directional antenna up as high as possible, though.


    Jim N3AWS
  4. KE4VNC

    KE4VNC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Look at my page for some other options.... A little bit heavier for portable use but I love using them all.
  5. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I ask because SSB interest is starting grow around here, and I hate to see a guy plunk down a ton of money for a all-band/mode radio. Especially if he's a tech.

    Some guys already have amps, so a 7-watt rig isn't a bad idea. If they don't have an amp, they might be motivated to put energy into building a sweet antenna array... maybe even build one?

    I don't know about everyone else, but I remember spinning a dial on an old rig without a frequency read-out. Man did I love those old radios. Turn it on, tune something in, and start talking. Good times.
  6. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    For most SSB work on 2m, having an accurate frequency display isn't really important. Either you hear the guy or you don't, and it's easy to dial around.

    However, for digi mode skeds (FSK441 etc), stations must be aligned precisely on the same frequency or they'll miss each other entirely. The MFJ would not be good for that. But for SSB, I don't see any real disadvantage as long as you know you're "in the band," which on 2m is anything above 144.100 for voice modes.
  7. WA9WVX

    WA9WVX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Why do you people think that the newer equipment cost an arm and leg? Iwent over to eBay and found several used Yaesu FT-736Rs for VHF & UHF Plus the Satellite Option between $650 and $800 USD. These are Great transceivers without a doubt in fact if Steve WB2WIK comes back to read this post, he can confirm how well these units work and at these prices, they are at lot less than when they were sold brand new. The RF Output is 25~30 W PEP for SSB and FM. To increase the RF Power Level, you would want to either build a 4CX250B RF Linear Amplifier or purchase a used one. Even though you're a Technician Class Licensee, hey so what, I was a Technician for many years and built up a first class VHF station for 6 and 2 meters with a KW on both bands, and not all of my equipment came brand new as a purchased a lot second hand.

  8. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    you really rubbed me the wrong way with that nonsense. i'm trying to justify the cheapest 2m ssb radio available and you have to make it a point to remind me that there are even more expensive options out there AND that my frugality somehow insults your sensibilites.

    i'll add that the mfj 2m ssb radio is a single-conversion poorly fltered narrow-bandwidth single mode piece of low powered equipment for $300. better than half the price of that stuff you're talking about, but half the features of a $200 cb radio (dual conversion 25 watt double-crystal filter with pll stability anl/nb etc etc etc).

    you people? i mean, really? how do you even know i'm from this planet?

    note: i'm 99% certain i'm not from this planet.
  9. W7UUU

    W7UUU Principal Moderator Lifetime Member 133 Administrator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    I bought a near-perfect Kenwood TR-9130 last year for $250 shipped. 25w on 2m SSB, digital dial - great radio.
    Of course, I added a Mirage amp for more power but that's not all that necessary.

    Just a thought

    W7UUU (and yes, I am on this planet for my foreseeable future)
  10. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have not used the MFJ, but I would be a little concerned about the accuracy of the frequency display around here, where there isn't a lot of two meter SSB activity that's not on 144.200. If you live in an area with lots of others, some of whom have accurate frequency readouts, this is probably not meaningful. A good, inexpensive rig like the MFJ should be much more popular than it has been. If people started using them with horizontal antennas, they probably be amazed at what they can do. People who only do FM with vertical antennas won't believe what weak signal modes can do.

    Back in ancient times, we all had the Heathkit Twoer, which provided 1 magnificent watt of overmodulated AM, and it was not uncommon to use it to work everybody else in a 30 mile radius. SSB with horizontal antennas should do much better than that.

    Now, just because someone is a Tech doesn't mean he doesn't have a use for an 'all band' radio. He can work 10 and 6 meter SSB, as well as CW on three HF bands. And, even as a Tech, he can listen to HF all that he wants, and that is probably a very positive thing.
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