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What would you do?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KG0BA, Jul 1, 2020.

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  1. KG0BA

    KG0BA Ham Member QRZ Page

    Twenty years ago, I purchased a brand new Yaesu FT-847 Tranceiver. Its had almost no use during the last 2o years. Over the last twenty years, I drifted away from amateur radio, all the business travel, other responsibilities, etc...

    I find that the Yaesu FT-847 has a very excellent track record, and some amateurs are still trying to acquire them used these days because of their wide range of versatility, and their build quality. But, the down side is, the FT-847 is twenty years old. I can still probably get about $1000.00 for the FT-847.

    Financially, I can afford to buy a new rig, especially if I sell the FT-847, but I'm not willing to spend over about $1800 for a new digital base rig. I'm trying to decide whether to sell it, and buy something new, something that has digital capabilities, that's as close to compatible to the range of capabilities that the FT-847 has, or to add a new rig to the shack, keep the FT-847 for it's versatility and range of capabilites, even though it is only analog, and just use it as a backup to the new digital rig.

    If I acquire a new base station radio that's as close as possible to the Yaesu FT-847 with respect to it's wide range of capabilities within the analog realm, but the new one with digital capability, what would be your recommendation with respect to current new production brand, model number, etc...?

    Here are the specs on the Yaesu FT-847:
    Three radios in one -- HF, VHF/UHF and satellite. You get 100 watt output on HF and 6 Meters, plus 50 watts on both 2 Meters and 430 MHz bands. Additional features include: Cross-band Full Duplex operation, Normal/Reverse Tracking, CTCSS/DCS Encode and Decode, 0.1 Hz tuning steps, DSP Notch, DSP NR and DSP BPF, Shuttle Jog Tuning Dial, Carry Handle and Keypad Entry. The FT-847 is also 1200/9600 bps Packet ready. 10.2 x 3.4 x 10.6 inches. With MH-31B8 hand mic.

    Last edited: Jul 1, 2020
  2. W3WN

    W3WN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'd recommend asking the dealer(s) that you consider for that new rig, what they would give you on trade for that FT-847. Level with them on the condition of the radio. Then make your best deal.
    K4AGO likes this.
  3. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I use the FT 847 for satellite work and it is impressive in a number of ways. It certainly would be on the top of my list when it comes to durability. If you might be wondering, Icom would be at the very bottom... off the page.
    WW2PT and K8PG like this.
  4. KG5THG

    KG5THG Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    If your just wanting to play with digital on hf, I would look into a signalink (or the like) and keep the radio if it's working for you in all other ways.
    WA9SVD and W7TCT like this.
  5. N3HGB

    N3HGB Ham Member QRZ Page

    I did plenty of digital HF work with a TS-440, am doing so now with a TS-450, and expect to do plenty with a TS-940 when it gets here. Sound card modes work with most radios, some being more easy to connect than others.
    KK4NSF likes this.
  6. KA8NCR

    KA8NCR Ham Member QRZ Page

    If I had the means to buy an updated radio but keep the 847, I would do just that. Twenty years on, it is still a fun radio to operate and is very much a relevant radio.

    However, if you're going to spin it, please consider sending me a PM.
  7. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't see any need to buy a new rig. Your 847 will work just fine for 99% of ham uasge within it's frequency range. You may not need to buy a SignaLink since it is already digital ready. Even if you do, they are quite inexpensive. The only thing it won't do is operate on some of the proprietary modes like D-Star. It's a good solid radio. I'd keep it and spend my extra money on antennas. Remember: Newer does not always mean better.
    WQ4G likes this.
  8. KK4NSF

    KK4NSF Ham Member QRZ Page

    I still do a lot of digital work with a TS-440. It's over 30 years old, and works just fine on FT-8, PSK-31, and all of the current HF digitial modes. AND it's transmit audio is better than many of the tinny-sounding new rigs out there. My plan is to keep it in service until it gets too ragged to work correctly..... and since I keep it in tip-top shape all the time, don't run it with a high SWR, have a spare parts radio, and have already corrected the "dreaded dots" problem, I'm guessing that will be a long time from now. By that time, it will be up to my heirs to worry about it.

    Just because a rig is old does not mean it's obsolete. As long as it's viable, it should get used.
  9. W1VT

    W1VT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I would keep the radio for satellite and VHF/UHF work and buy a new radio just for HF digital. The latest crop of radios is much easier to interface to a computer than older rigs.

    It is great to have a familiar radio around if you have to sort of issues that are most likely operator error.

    Zak W1VT
  10. N3HGB

    N3HGB Ham Member QRZ Page

    I wouldn't go spending hundreds to thousands of dollars to avoid having to spend $50-$100 or so to buy or make an interface. Well here you go:
    $125. Plug it in and go. This is not rocket surgery, you need audio, audio out, and PTT. CAT cables are also available for that rig ;)
    KK4NSF likes this.

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