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ftm-100dr -vs-ftm-7250dr

Discussion in 'On the Road' started by K9EDV, Oct 18, 2018.

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  1. K9EDV

    K9EDV Ham Member QRZ Page

    what are your thoughts on these two radios? witch one should I buy?
    1) I like the look of the 100 better then the 7250
    2) the 7250 looks like it built tougher (more beefy)
    3) I like the dual display on the 100
    4) I'm thinking either one will do everything I want plus some .
    this will be my first fusion rig so I know I have a lot to learn.
    so who's got these rigs and how do you like them?
    how hard are they to program?
    are they user friendly?
    let me know what you think thanks, Ed - K9EDV
     
  2. W4EAE

    W4EAE Ham Member QRZ Page

    I own the FTM-100, and I considered the 7250. The decision wound up being pretty simple for me.

    The screen on the FTM-100 is fantastic. Very dim to very bright is a few button presses away. The faceplate is removable, and there is no extra kit to buy for a remote head install; it comes with all you need. (I do have to say at this point that the microphone still has to attach directly to the main body, and you would need a mic extension if you wanted to mount it in your trunk, for example). In my car, the install of the FTM-100 just made a lot more sense. In fact, with the solid face plate and the curiously front facing speaker on the 7250, an install in my car would have been impossible. If you intend to go mobile and don't have a flat space above or under your dash to do so, the 7250 is hard to justify. The mounting options are probably the primary thing that made the initial choice for me.

    Sticking with the screen; in digital modes, a larger screen reaps exponential benefits. For FM, the only data that is relevant when you receive a call is signal strength. With digital, there are rooms or talk groups, callsigns, names, locations, speed, weather conditions--all sorts of things that you really need a decently sized screen to see. Not to complicate things further, but with the recent price drop the FTM-400 has an even larger screen (and a few other things) for not very much more money.

    I cannot speak to the 7250, but the receiver of the FTM-100 is superb. I have occasionally brought the 100 into my shack just to use as a receiver for 2m. My FT-2980 could get out there really well, but what I heard back was barely readable. Using the 2980 as a transmitter and the 100 as a receiver, I can get good copy from new stations at the absolute edge.

    Programming channels is doable from the head, just like with any mobile radio. I wouldn't say that it is particularly easy or particularly difficult. The FTM-100 comes with a programming cable (very unusual in my experience). The software is OK, but with this radio I actually purchased the RT Systems software for the first time. With the RT software, programming is a breeze. The FTM-100 also had and SD card slot. If your radio is mounted mobile, this is a big bonus. Once you have initially programmed, the radio with the software, you can make changes and transfer then to the radio via the SD card. No hauling the radio into the house or your computer out the car.

    I wish you well in your venture into digital voice. The biggest thing Yaesu System Fusion has going for it is that it has the lowest threshold of entry for any of the digital modes. All you have to do is buy a radio, enter your callsign, and jump on the air. If you connect to a YSF WIRES-X repeater, then all of the available rooms show up on your radio for selection. I am a DMR user as well, and the process of getting a DMR ID, programming code plugs, RX lists, talk groups is not a small project. To connect to a DMR repeater, you have to know what is available ahead to time, and program that information into your radio. Both systems have their place (YSF is Yaesu-only and DMR is wide open), but I would say YSF is a good starting point.

    One thing that is quite complicated on the FTM-100 is APRS; but that is the nature of APRS, and there really isn't much that Yaesu could have done to try and make it simple. A completely separate user manual is available at Yaesu's website for APRS.

    One more thing I have to state is that while the FTM-100 does have a dual-watch feature, it only has a single receiver. I believe the case is the same with the 7250. If this is important to you, take it under consideration.

    I know I've gone on for while, but I hope it is helpful. For me the takeaway is that if price is the overriding concern, the 7250 appears to be a perfectly good radio; but the mounting options and screen size of the FTM-100 more than justify the price difference. That is why I would throw the FTM-400 into the mix as well. The even larger screen makes it even more usable, but it might be too large for your particular install.
     

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