FTM-400 vs FTM-300

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by KD4MOJ, Apr 18, 2020.

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  1. K2BCE

    K2BCE Ham Member QRZ Page

    When you say scan, is that across a band for any traffic, or through memory channels you've stored only? I just picked up a FTM-300DR yesterday and can't wait to get it installed. Quite a bit smaller footprint than the 400, and does everything the 400 will do but it's more compact and newer technology, improved fan/cooling design too.
  2. WB8NQW

    WB8NQW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have had the FTM-300 since late July in the shack, along with the FTM-400 and FT-70 HH. The 300 was installed in the mobile last week. I like the radio. The operation is very similar to the 400 without the touch screen. I was concerned about the touchscreen in the mobile. Many keypad functions of the 400 also work on the 300 even though the manual does not mention the procedures. It will operate Wires-X mode on the A-band with APRS active on the B-band. In my opinion the menu operation is easier with the push buttons than with the touch screen. Basically it is hold the function key - rotate knob to select option - press knob to proceed - rotate to select - press to change - press back key to restore main display.

    I hoped to use the Bluetooth option mobile but that did not work out. The Yaesu Bluetooth device worked fine but I could not get the receive volume high enough so I could hear it in the shack so I am sure I would not be able to hear it in the vehicle. Also the transmit audio reports were not very good at all using the Bluetooth. The PTT button on the Yaesu device was flush with body at ear level and not very easy to find reliably.

    The display has a lot of information on it and is fairly easy to read in the shack. In the mobile the control head is mounted on top of the dash and the distance from my face is between trifocals on my glasses and some of the smaller print is difficult to read but the important stuff is no problem. If driving into the sun it is a little more difficult to read, but that is not the fault of the rig.

    I am not a big fan of scan mode so I have no opinions about that. Our radio club hopes to experiment with Group mode sometime soon.

    So far I have no complaints except for the Bluetooth function but at 80 years old my hearing is not what it was 40 years ago. My XYL says, "You have used a microphone for over 40 years, why change now?"
    K2BCE likes this.
  3. K4AKS

    K4AKS XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    In scanning I meant memory channels. I remapped the P4 button to scan so I only have to tap it rather than holding down the up/down buttons.
    K2BCE likes this.
  4. K2BCE

    K2BCE Ham Member QRZ Page

    Ah ok I see now, I'll get mine installed this weekend. Just doing my homework and YouTube is very helpful, but the menu operation seems so much easier than the Kenwood D710G I had. I want to look into whether you could scan for nearby Fusion repeaters via the onboard GPS or not, or if they all have to be programmed into memory. Appreciate the help.
  5. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have the 100, looked at the 300 but its display is too damn big to mount in my vehicle. That extra inch really gets in the way.
  6. KE5VJS

    KE5VJS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Aside from the touch screen on the 400 and screen size of the 300

    what are the primary differences , advantages or disadvantage between the two. Initially I was completely sold on the 400 but now I’m considering the 300. Small screen size aside it seems like the same radio in a smaller size
  7. WB8NQW

    WB8NQW Ham Member QRZ Page

    The 300 has built-in Bluetooth capability, built in band scope, Wires-X capability on both VFOs, menu ops are more intuitive, main chassis mount much improved - slide out capability- and probably some others that I have not discovered yet .
    KC3QVD and K2BCE like this.
  8. W4EAE

    W4EAE XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    There are many already enumerated differences between the 400 and the 300, but there is one thing that has not been touched upon yet that gives the 300 a distinct edge.

    Yaesu has been evolving their System Fusion since they first released it; both with how the transceivers function, and with the linking networks. The two specific changes I am referencing are IMRS and DG-ID functionality. These go hand in hand.

    IMRS is an alternative to WIRES-X for linking repeaters. With IMRS, two repeaters can be linked directly over LAN or the internet (no clunky WIRES-X software running on an unstable Windows machine connected to the repeater). The DG-ID is how you select what repeaters your are talking on. As a single possible example: Two repeaters are linked over IMRS. If you transmit into DG-ID 00 on either repeater, your TX is only hear on the local repeater. If you transmit with a DG-ID 10 on either repeater, your transmissions are heard on both repeaters. (If you have ever used DMR, this should be ringing some bells, as the DG-ID functions very similarly to a talkgroup).

    Yaesu released IMRS several years ago, and since then the YCS server (not Yaesu affiliated) has been developed. A YCS server has 99 'rooms' (DG-IDs 01-99). A YCS server can accept connection over FCS, YSF, or IMRS protocols. A hotspot connecting over FCS or a repeater connecting over IMRS can 'subscribe' to a number of different 'rooms' at the same time (much like a DMR repeater or hotspot over IPSC-2).

    In addition, G4KLX is working on a DG-ID branch of YSFClients. You can run DG-IdGateway instead of YSFGateway, and set different DG-IDs to different YSF, FCS, and YCS networks. For example, you could have AMERICA-LINK RX/TX on DG-ID 40, WM-CONNECT on DG-ID 50, XLX369 on DG-ID 60, etc.

    To the FTM-300 and FTM4-400:

    Yaesu added the DG-ID feature to the FTM-400 via a firmware update, but it is limited in practical application as it is a global setting that is fairly awkward to change. With the newer radios like the FTM-300 and the FT-3, the RX and TX DG-ID can be saved per channel. This makes operation on any of the above mentioned networks much, much easier.
    KE5VJS and K2BCE like this.
  9. K5KMY

    K5KMY Ham Member QRZ Page

    I currently own two FTM-400s and find them to be really nice radios. On is in my vehicle while the other is my home base unit.

    I’m not sure if the FTM-300 has it, but one of the features I really enjoy with my FTM-400s is the crossband repeater capability. At home, I can set up the crossband so I can be anywhere within HT range of home and connect to more distant stations or repeaters via my home FTM-400’s 50 watts and taller base antenna. When out hunting or hiking, I do the same with my vehicle’s FTM-400. I often lose cell phone signals in the more remote areas. However, as long as I am within HT range of my vehicle and it is within range of a repeater I can make a connection if need be.

    The FTM-300 looks to be a great radio and I can confirm the FTM-400 is an outstanding radio. I don’t think you will go wrong with either choice.

  10. N4DJC

    N4DJC Ham Member QRZ Page

    The 300 will crossband repeat. I just got mine today, nice radio. The big speaker sounds great. It’s pretty easy to program. Mine had the new firmware update already installed (yay). I use it as a base rig, everything feels solid, and I can see the slide out mount being handy. Screen is plenty good enough for me. The APRS is not as good as Kenwood for sure but very usable. The fan is quiet, I didn’t really notice it running.

    Mine is Made in Japan...
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
    WM7C and K2BCE like this.

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