ad: Alphaant-1

My top 5 uhf vhf handheld radios

Discussion in 'Videos and Podcasts' started by KC2BNW, Oct 3, 2021.

ad: L-HROutlet
ad: l-rl
ad: Radclub22-2
ad: HomeBrew-2
ad: L-MFJ
ad: L-Geochron
ad: Left-2
ad: Left-3
ad: abrind-2
ad: HamRadioPrep-1
  1. KC2BNW

    KC2BNW Ham Member QRZ Page

    A subjective list based on my experiences at work and hiking and camping. What are your top 5 radios?
    UT7UX likes this.
  2. KB9MWR

    KB9MWR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I still like my VX-5. Granted it was more versitle when I could still listen to analog TV audio, the county police where on VHF, and the City was on 800 MHz analog.

    I'm not sure why you have 5 different handhelds. If they did different modes or bands I guess taht would make sense. Buying a new HT that does the same thing the old one did every couple years is the stupid consumerism that keeps manufactures pumping out the same out crap with little new real innovation. They know a group gadget obsessed folks will but it.

    Just my opinion. Obviously I am interested in trying to get manufacturer to develop something other than the same old thing in terms of capabilites. As long as they have buyers the have no incentive.
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2021
  3. UT7UX

    UT7UX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Actually I hoped to see the cat, not the radios only. :p
    Kenwood is the best, don't you?
    KC2BNW likes this.
  4. KC2BNW

    KC2BNW Ham Member QRZ Page

    If they are different, then how are they the same? These weren't bought new, in fact, they were bought used aftermarket. If you pay attention, each radio with the exception of the vx3r, is different from the others. For example the kenwood is a tri banded that does ssb reception. The vx1r is the smallest radio for a dual band radio that fits in a pocket easy and runs on usb power, the Vx7r is fully submersible radio quad band, and the FT1xdr is a digital and analog radio. Quite the difference in my opinion. I do share the frustration at the radio makers today as they have not made too much innovative designs. I'd like a radio that can use 18650 batteries or lifepo4 chemistry batteries that is rugged and waterproof while being about to do quad band performance with an extended ability to output 5watts and be thermally design to withstand that. There are more things I could list but just a few.
  5. KC2BNW

    KC2BNW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I prefer the kenwood thf6a and the vx7r primarily now since they cover my daily needs mostly.
    UT7UX likes this.
  6. KI4POT

    KI4POT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've owned a VX-7r since they were new (was the first radio I purchased after getting licensed in 2006). It's a very durable little brick and has excellent battery life, but suffers from intermod in urban locations or on summits with radio towers. Before I was aware of that, I would try activating summits with radio towers and wondered why nobody responded. Turns out, they were, I just couldn't hear them. This became apparent when my buddy was on the same summit with a 2m mobile and could hear people calling me. That said, it works great in quieter environments. Also, I've enjoyed messing about with 6m FM and have even made some relatively long distant contacts with it.

    It's my go-to radio for activities where I need a radio, but am not engaging in amateur-radio-specific activities (ie hunting, hiking, etc) due to it's size, water-resistance, and durability. It's an ideal "outdoor" radio. With a Smiley "Stubby Duck" 2m antenna, it performs well but is more compact than the factory rubber duck.

    My other two HTs are an old Icom IC-V8 and Kenwood TH-D74. The Icom was purchased specifically for its 2m performance. It has one of the best HT receivers around and does a great job of rejecting outside interference. The Kenwood is a feature-laden radio, but in terms of 2mFM simplex performance, it's no better than the VX-7. I've used the two side-by-side during a VHF contest (on the same antennas) and can't tell any difference. I have it more for its APRS and GPS capabilities. DStar, something I wasn't interested in at first, has become an interesting diversion.

    KC2BNW likes this.
  7. KC2BNW

    KC2BNW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Those are some fantastic radios. I should have gotten a used th d74a when i had the chance a few years ago. I didnt appreciate its ssb receiver capabilities which are better than the thf6a. Youre absolutely right about the intermod and sensitivity issues. That icom my brother picked up is very good. I use a Htx202 radio shack ht with a 10xAA battery compartment for sota and hilltopping because the front end in it is very good and no intermod and highly sensitive. Hands down no questions the best comm ht for the price i paid. 24 bucks plus 15 for the AA case. I used ot use a vx170 my family got me for christmas one year and thats a good radio too for its ruggedness!
  8. UT7UX

    UT7UX Ham Member QRZ Page

    I owned TH-F7E (Euro version of TH-F6A) for a looong time, since it was introduced, and was absolutely happy with it. Finally sold it to a fellow who did his fist steps in the hobby and wanted DC to daylight receiver while I found myself using it once per few months. Same time I tried VX-7R but never got used with its ergonomics however its performance seemed good for me so I understand why many OPs love it. Still I'm happy any time I see good TH-F6A (TH-F7E) that works in someone's hands. :)
    KC2BNW likes this.
  9. KC7JNJ

    KC7JNJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I carry an old VX-5r in my go bag with a Ham stuff antenna, and a AA pack. I keep the batteries in a separate battery caddy tell I need them. So much I can with that radio. But the wife and I just bought ft-60r’s. They do everything we need them to do, they are tough, and we can get AA pack for them. And they are cheap for a radio in that class. So far we really like them, we are lucky as we still have many repeaters here to use. We did not need any digital at all.
    KC2BNW likes this.
  10. KC2BNW

    KC2BNW Ham Member QRZ Page

    vx5r is a good radio. havent tried the ft60r. my brother god a good deal on a vx5r for 50bucks at a hamfest. Thing is small!
    KC7JNJ likes this.
  11. KI4POT

    KI4POT Ham Member QRZ Page

    FT-60s are great radios. A buddy has two of them. In terms of 2m simplex performance, they're nearly as good as the IC-V8 (the latter just barely edges them out, but you're not likely to notice while using them side by side). But, you get 70cm with the Yaesu. If I had to replace my analog HTs today and had to buy new at a local shop, I'd buy the FT-60 without hesitation. Being able to run off AAs is a huge perk. Not many will run at full power on alkaline cells. My VX-7 doesn't.

    A VX5 for $50? I'd buy that immediately just for the size and 6m.

    KC7JNJ and KC2BNW like this.
  12. KC7JNJ

    KC7JNJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes the vx5r are good radios. Being able to listen to AM/FM Broadcast bands, weather service. Our local emergency services police fire ambulance are still at VHF/UHF and still analog. so I can also listen to them. Though I only carry the AA pack which only gives me a watt or so out, with the ham stuff antenna I can still hit all my local repeaters. I have used it a bunch to listen to FM and pick up some music while doing on mundane and tasks at work.
    KC2BNW likes this.

Share This Page

ad: seapac-1