Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by WF7I, Jul 2, 2002.
TEMPO 2020.......Very disappointing radio.
Although I did not buy this rig new, the experience I had in my early days makes a good story.
I purchased at a swapfest a National Radio NCX3. Supposedly a mobile HF rig, it was bigger than some modern day compact cars and twice as heavy. This particular gem came with a home built power supply free for nothing.
The NCX3 had one major fault. It drifted A LOT. You could turn it on and set the VFO to 14.225, and within a couple of hours it would drift right off the band edge at 14.350. The only cure for this was to let the rig warm up for several hours before operating. I quickly got in the habit of leaving it on all waking hours that there was any chance that I could get in 15 minutes of air time.
One day I turned it on and proceeded to forget it completely. So badly was it forgotten that I got on an airplane the next day and flew to Puerto Rico for a 2 week business trip. Now at that time I had the power supply sitting on the floor under the ham shack desk. I figured that was a safe place for it. However, I did not count on running the supply for 2 weeks non-stop.
Upon returning home, I smelled a burning odor. The shack carpet had a 2 square foot burn mark in it, the power supply had apparently sent various voltages to the rig, and every circuit I could identify was burned out. The only miracle was that the house had not burned to the ground.
The rig went into the garage, the carpet to the junk pile, and I went shopping for a decent rig. Moral of this story, do not buy junk.
lets see now, i reckon the worst "so far" is the ADI AR 146 with its sometimes heiroglyphics display.. Usually after it has set for 3-4 days without use. But a lite tap on the front end, and it straightens up and is readable.. It makes a good loaner radio as most people willingly return it. hehehe
Without a doubt the Heathkit HW-5400 was the biggest piece of junk that I've ever owned. It was Heath's attempt to keep up with ricebox invasion in PLL all soild state circuitry. Never worked properly and it was Heath's beginning of the end. They should have stayed in the simple kit market------ DX-60B transmitters, etc... just look what an unbuilt kit goes for on eBay!
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (K2WH @ July 04 2002,10:34)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I've been a ham for 33 years and except for early on when I bought Ameco equipment, I do not recall ever having a "Worst" rig. Of course back then, there wasn't much to compare rigs to except home brew stuff.
For the past 20 years or so, I have only bought ICOM equipment and to tell you the truth, they all worked as advertised. I am somewhat puzzled by the posting though. When you say worst rig, I say worst compared to what? Most hams do not know how to compare rigs or, have only 1 rig and to them that is the very best rig because they haven't heard anything better.
Personnaly, I think todays ham is too demanding of amateur equipment. There are so many sites that compare or review equipment that it is all a little overwhelming. Owners of equipment complain about the color, the heat, the audio, programmability, flexibility etc. Apparently hams know whats best for hams not the manufacturers.
I recently purchased the Kenwood TH-F6A handie talkie and I think it is the best HT on the market. Go to Yahoo.com TH-F6A group though, and all they do is bitch about what the radio is lacking or some other nebulous short coming. I personnaly have never compared one rig to the other, and when I buy a new rig, it is the best rig I ever owned, the worst rig doesn't exist.
Huh? I think you're thinking this one through way too deeply. Good rigs and bad rigs out there, just like anything else in life.
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (km5uk @ July 19 2002,23:51)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE"> lets see now, i reckon the worst "so far" is the ADI AR 146 with its sometimes heiroglyphics display.. Usually after it has set for 3-4 days without use. But a lite tap on the front end, and it straightens up and is readable.. It makes a good loaner radio as most people willingly return it. hehehe[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
Probably with a hammer
JK, OM (hi hi)
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (n6kys @ July 20 2002,12:12)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Without a doubt the Heathkit HW-5400 was the biggest piece of junk that I've ever owned. It was Heath's attempt to keep up with ricebox invasion in PLL all soild state circuitry. Never worked properly and it was Heath's beginning of the end. [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
I forgot about this one. It was so bad that I asked the guy I bought it from if I could return it for a refund. He said no way did he ever want to see that piece of %&*@$# again and refunded my money and made me keep the radio. It had distorted transmit audio at any mic level [even the qst test mentions it in a round about way] and the receiver was full of phase noise. It did work but was a miserable excuse for a radio.
i have likely had a few "dogs" over the past 43 years on the air...one that comes to mind was a yaesu ft2auto ..it was a xtal control 2 mtr fm rig in the mid to late 70's...could never get it to work properly....a rig i like very much, and still own, had it shares of problems, but once i got them taken care of ...it's been a great rig...that is the japan radio corp model jst 245.....by far the least dependable rigs i have owned are icom rigs ...every icom i have ever owned (but one) had at least one problem where the rig had to be sent for repair...,i.e. purchased a new ic 706 when they first came out and it did not even last a week, i call icom the chrysler corp of ham radio..the (but one) by the way, is the ic 2800 which i have had no problem with, in fact it is a great radio...saw a couple posts for the alinco ar-146... this has been one of the best radios i have ever owned...check the qst review on this rig...when it comes to service...ten tec all the way ...the rest are not even in the race...
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (kb7rky @ July 18 2002,23:10)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Hmmm...where do I begin??
Well, let me say that whoever the Einsteinian brainstormer was to build amateur HTs with milliwatts of output should be publically beaten into unconsiousness with day-old loaves of French bread
The worst rigs I ever had the misfortune of using:
1. Alinco DJ-S11T and S41T (turn the number 4 upside down and you get what they are). These two HTs are way too underpowered to perform as they were designed to do, a royal pain in the backside to program, and, did I mention their extremely low power output? You absolutely ***had*** to be PHYSICALLY LOOKING AT THE REPEATER (standing next to it was a plus!, with your left leg up and your right hand in the air, while standing in a puddle of water (to make a good earth ground), and thinking good, pure thoughts, all the while HOPING that you could actually trip the receiver (even while standing next to the repeater). Although the design was innovative at the time, the power output was what turned me away from Alinco products. Thank God I didn't have to pay for either one (they were door prizes).
2. Radio Schmuck HTX-404. Maybe I just got a bad radio (I tend to think so, since I know someone who is STILL using an HTX-202 some 4-5 years later), but the PLL of this 440 version kept unlocking after about 5 minutes of use. I would shut the radio off to reset it, and it was good to go for quite awhile (about an hour or so of normal use.) Then, the PLL finally unlocked completely, and no amount of resetting the radio would do any good (good thing it decided to do die right then and there in the showroom as I was explaining the problem to them.) After fighting with RS for 6 months to get the concrete cork (dam! thing fixed, they finally offered, as a replacement, an Alinco DJ-S41T. I about had a coronary right there in the showroom...but I kept my composure long enough to kindly ask for a refund.
I've had only good experiences with Icom rigs (well, not always...I had an IC-211 that had a offset problem, but that was the exception...it was a well-used radio, and probably should have been sent in for a good tune-up). In fact, my first rig was an IC-2GAT 7 watt HT. Although the front end is kinda weak on Icom rigs (I get some intermod on my 2100H, and that's when I'm passing by the higher-powered public service and pager repeaters), it's not so bad that I'm gonna pitch the radio out the window. Standard radios are good, too. Azdens are a pain to program, and the lack of a tuning knob is a definite minus (on the mobiles). I have a couple of minor problems with my Pryme PR-52...sometimes the display blanks out just for a quick second, but it's nothing compared to how quickly the battery drains.
I can't say anything good or bad about other radios, mostly because I haven't used them, or I know someone who swears by their particular choice of radio. It's just a matter of *your* particular choice...if you have a good experience with a particular brand, you'll tend to stick with it.
E-mail bombs and "I Hate Icom" e-mails can be sent to...
Doug KB7RKY[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
HI again,, i have a 5 yr. old htx 202 that sees daily use and has only had one battery change, and still works fine, and a htx 404 recently bought off e-bay, and it is in perfect shape.. So i guess there are good and bad ones in all brands, and the yaesu FT 7100M is not making me very proud of it, but "so far" has always cleared up after turning it off and then back on again.. Jury is still out. 73
I had many rigs in 45 years of ham radio activity. My worst radio was a SGC Powertalk 2000 with DSP.