Would you rather: TS-2000 vs IC-9100 with or without 23cm addons

Discussion in 'VHF/UHF - 50Mhz and Beyond' started by K3RW, Jul 14, 2018.


TS-2000 or IC-9100 (for both, with or without modules)

  1. TS-2000 without native 23cm module (use GPS lockable transverter)

    1 vote(s)
  2. TS-2000 with native 23cm module (it is GPS lockable and/or its good enough)

    6 vote(s)
  3. IC-9100 without native 23cm module (use GPS lockable transverter)

    2 vote(s)
  4. IC-9100 with native 23cm module (it is GPS lockable and/or its good enough)

    20 vote(s)
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  1. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I think the 9100 is a better performer also, and bought one (new) recently.

    I've never owned a TS-2000 so I cannot put them side-by-side but always noticed that on VHF-UHF literally every single time I worked anyone with a TS-2000 they never heard me as well as I heard them, running exactly the same power; I suspect high NF or if not that, possibly just high phase noise that masks a lot of stuff.

    Starting when the 9100 came out, I noted everyone using one heard me just as well as I heard them, running equivalent power; this "experiment" was repeated probably fifty times. My main VHF-UHF rig for years has been an FT-736R which is pretty "hot."

    When I got the 9100 I did compare it to my 736R and it's about the same.

    I don't have 23cm in the 9100 but it doesn't look difficult to add. I do have it in the 736R, and as someone stated above, it takes more time to remove the covers than it takes to install the module. The only thing "difficult" at all about adding modules to the 736R was making sure the thermally conductive sil-pad is exactly lined up when tightening down the screws, to assure good heat sinking. That takes about an extra minute, but the "module installation" from start to finish takes about 15-20 minutes. I don't think it will be much different with the 9100 if I ever add that.

    The 9100 has the advantage over the 736R in that it's 100W on 50 and 144 MHz, and 70W on 70cm. On SSB-CW it runs cool; on FM if you hold long transmissions, it runs hot! I don't work much FM so I don't care much.
  2. KM3F

    KM3F Ham Member QRZ Page

    In reply to post #8.
    The TS 2000 is to old to have a USB port but has the older RS232.
    Built in TNC.
    K3RW likes this.
  3. KM3F

    KM3F Ham Member QRZ Page

    Ran out of edit time and lost a lot of typing information..
    The 2000 has DSP not IF shift.
  4. K3RW

    K3RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    So you could run a RS232 serial-to-USB to a PC, and not need a soundcard interface like a RigBlaster, SignaLink, etc.?
  5. KO6WB

    KO6WB Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    No, the sound is translated to digital by the Signalink for the computer to use. The RS-232 interface has nothing to do with the audio signals. The RS-232 is strictly for rig control functions and is digital in nature. Audio is analog by nature (usually).

    Have fun
    K3RW likes this.
  6. K3RW

    K3RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Is there a way to GPS lock the stock 23cm module? I do intend to take it EME 'someday'.

    If not, I was thinking of using a high quality DEMI unit or SG Labs 23cm transverter, GPS locking it, and eunning that in lieu of the stock 23cm module, which I figured might be saving a bit of cash, and one less part to go down with the ship if Murphy strikes, and also that I could use it on my other VHF rigs.

    Downside is the SG Labs one is great but 2.5w, so after getting it to 10w its almost the same in cost as the stock module. Maybe NF is an issue between the two.

    I notice the 9100 has no 'transverter' mode, so it won't read-out up to 19GHz like the TS-2000. Oh well.
  7. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I assume you've read this and all the other stuff by "cousin Allen": http://flarc.net/eme-info/PDF/K2UYH-6.pdf

    Al claims e.m.e. does not require great frequency accuracy, just very good stability, and accuracy within 500 Hz is plenty sufficient for almost anybody.

    I'd tend to agree with that after working a lot of 70cm e.m.e. years ago (late 70s-early 80s) when it was all CW and not JT65; WSJT should make this all easier, not harder. But Doppler can be several hundred Hz, and WSJT actually tells you what it is, once you're set up; we had no way to instantly know this decades ago and frankly it was pretty easy to figure out -- easier still if you could generate enough e.r.p. to hear your own reflections. With 1kW output and four 19L K2RIW yagis (probably 22 dBd gain or so) if the moon was in an advantageous position I could hear my own reflections most of the time. Now with WSJT it can take a much smaller station.:)
    K3RW likes this.
  8. KS1G

    KS1G Ham Member QRZ Page

    TS2K vs IC-9100. I acquired a used TS2KX a few months ago (wanted the 1296 coverage) and have been using it on satellites (my primary VHF/UHF interest) and very occasional VHF terrestrial (antenna & time limitations). I'd say from specs and some conversations, the 9100 is the superior radio and I would not turn one down. But it costs much more. That's the difference between having HF-6-2-70cm-1296MHz in one box and not. Rest is icing on cake for me.

    Compared to my IC-821H, the TS2K has a better front panel layout and the XIT/RIT and power adjustment are easier to use vs the 821H. 821H has better integration for data modes, particularly split band (only Falconsat-3 at the moment). I'll have to do side by side tests which radio hears better and if it really matters on satellites (terrestrial may be very different). The TS2K has a well-known UHF birdie that affects the SO-50 downlink; I can use the 821 an HT so not a deal-breaker for me. The TS2K's "obsolete" RS232 interface may be a feature as I seem to have better results with a USB-4xRS232 cable (especially when using a laptop) than managing multiple USB cables.
    K3RW likes this.
  9. K3RW

    K3RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Very, very helpful. Thanks so much.

    Stupid about the 'known birdie' on the Kenwood. Any idea where its at?

    I like the 9100 but the serial port is kind of a plus on the TS-2000 except for needing a soundcard interface. And not having AM on 2/70cm (and I'm guessing 23cm) on the 9100 is a curious omission. Today I say no one probably uses 23cm AM but just wait, be my luck.

    Is there a Yaesu of similar vintage (not the FT-736R) that I should consider? Aside from the 817 and 736R I will say I know about nothing of Yaesu. I'm wondering if there is an equivalent rig that is a competitor.
  10. KS1G

    KS1G Ham Member QRZ Page

    You're welcome. The TS-2000 birdie affects 436.8 MHz. (28th harmonic of the 15.6 MHz TCXO), interferes with parts of the SO-50 passes (and back in the day AO-27). Some folks report using narrow FM and tuning away from the birdie helps greatly (I have not tried that yet). Another approach is a receive converter and use the RX-only HF port (seems a bit overkill for dealing with (currently) one satellite). Plenty of info online about it and no fix from Kenwood that I know of (but as a relatively new owner please don't take my word as gospel). The serial port works fine for computer control and seems OK for the internal TNC, note you cannot use both at the same time and the TNC may not be as full-featured as a dedicated one (say, Kantronics) or a soundcard modem. I expect I'll settle on using a RigBlaster or SignaLink as I want computer control more than the TNC function.

    A big plus for me with the TS-2000 using PC control are the RIT or XIT functions to fine-tune my signal (usually the uplink, even if I'm violating the 1-true-rule approach), rather than using SatPC32 and the -/+ keys. It's a big knob and feels natural. Comes in VERY handy on AO-73 where the oscillator drift in the transponder can shift my signal a lot. The TS2000 has +/- 20kHz of RIT/XIT capability which has been more than enough. It's also enough shift to work without full computer correction for Doppler when somethings gone wonky.

    Yaesu makes several radios with 160-70cm capability, but nothing like the 2000 or 9100.

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