Yaesu 8800 vs 7800

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio Equipment Reviews' started by W8GTF, Jul 14, 2008.

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  1. KE4LLW

    KE4LLW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Just my two cents.....I bought the 8800R a few months ago and I love it. It's a bit cumbersome to learn how to program it but with practice and thorough reading of the manual you'll get the hang of it. Nice rig!!!
  2. W8GTF

    W8GTF Ham Member QRZ Page

    My YL's father has two 8800's. One in his truck and one in the house. If & WHEN I get an 8800, I'm sure he'll lend me the programming cable & software for the rig.
  3. N1SQB

    N1SQB Ham Member QRZ Page

    You Cant Lose Either Way!

    Our State EOCs ALL have been equipped with 8800s. I dont have a problem with them. Easy to use, Great audio on both TX and RX. The dual reception is nice. I have tested the 7800 from my home as well. I will tell you one thing, dont discount this radio. I have received nothing but great audio reports using it as a base. The sensitivity on both Ham and non-Ham bands is outstanding. Much simpler to use than the 8800. You really cant go wrong with either radio. I want them both. Now, what I can actually afford, well thats another topic for another day!......LOL :D


  4. VE6NS

    VE6NS Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I own one of each and you won't be disappointed with whatever one you get.
  5. KD6WAG

    KD6WAG Guest

    Interesting thread. Well, Since I TRADED my Ft-8800 for a brand new FT-7800, I'll just give you my experience on the two.

    I absolutely did NOT like the FT-8800 as a mobile. Here's why:

    Disappointment #1:
    The front end display has buttons that are so small to manipulate while driving. They are hard to see AND hard to "feel" with the fingers as well.

    With the 7800, the buttons are much larger and easier to get my fat fingers on them, especially while driving.

    Disappointment #2
    The fact that the buttons on 8800's front end do NOT LIGHT UP AT NIGHT!!!! That was my BIGGEST complaint. Do you realize how much a pain in the $%# that is while driving and not being able to see the buttons? The only thing lit up with the 8800 is the orange glow of the LCD display, showing you frequency etc.... You can't see the surrounding buttons around the split screen to make changes etc... Several times I'd have to pull over at night and the dome light wasn't bright enough to locate the correct button to push for a certain function.

    Not so with the 7800. Not only are the buttons large, but they are illuminated! Nice bright orange illuminated buttons. I can see in the dark while driving!!!!! (fyi, I really don't have "fat" fingers and my vision is actually 20/15 by the way).

    Disappointment #3 is the split display. I thought I would like it, but actually it distracted me a bit while driving. Since this is truely a mobile radio, if I was listening to a qso on 2M, I didn't hate the feature, I just realized that I didn't care for it once I used it. What I did eventually hate was the fact that it's literally having two radios on at the same time! Hearing two conversations. When I'm carrying on a QSO, or even a telephone call for that matter, I surely don't have to seperate radios on. Nor do I talk with two telephones on.

    Both models are "dual band" radios. However, with the 7800 only one band will come up on the receiver and display during scan mode. If the radio is set on "scan" mode, I really will never miss a call on either 2m or 70cm band. It's just more practical for me.

    Disappointment #4. Actually this didn't really bother me too much what I'm about to describe. Since I'm like most here, slightly technical savay, I thought the menu driven procedures were a bit too much "crap" when compared to the 7800. The 7800 is just a bit more "idiot proof" and quite simply, EASIER TO OPERATE than the 8800. Period.

    I did use the cross band repeat feature on two occasions with the 8800. Both times, I parked my truck on top of a hill. I hiked down into a deep canyon on some hunting trips. My truck now became a "repeater" for my small hand held ham radio (FT-530). I was able to get out to the local repeater out in the middle of no-where while using the x-band repeat function. With just the hand held down in the canyon, I couldn't get out to anything at all. So I will say, the x-band feature does work. But, are you really and honestly going to use it???? I'm an outdoors hunting fanatic. I've no use for that feature. I just used it to try it for kicks.

    There you have it. If you can stand to not have a face plate that is illuminated in dark (like the 8800); and you can live with the fact that the 8800 has such small buttons that when you drive over a bump in the road with your finger on it, you'll hit the wrong button, than the 8800 is for you.

    If you like larger buttons that are MUCH EASIER to access, and a FULLY ILLUMINATED front end display (nobs & buttons), while being much simpler to use in general, than the 7800 is for you.

    Don't hate.... just my opinion based on EXPERIENCE with both radios.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 28, 2008
  6. N1SQB

    N1SQB Ham Member QRZ Page


    You do bring up a very good point I had forgotten about. Those buttons ARE a pain in the rump to see and/or use in a mobile enviroment.
  7. N8MME

    N8MME XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have both the 7800 and the 8800. The 7800 is my mobile rig and the 8800 is the base unit. I found your evaluation of both radios to be very accurate and I have the very same opinions. :) Both are excellent radios for slightly different reasons.
  8. KD6WAG

    KD6WAG Guest

    I agree with you 100%. You make an excellent point. The FT-8800 would make an EXCELLENT base station radio. Hmmmm, now if I can maybe convince my friend to sell me back my FT-8800 while alowing me to keep his brand new 7800. I should have thought of that. I could have used the FT-8800 in the shack. Oh well, I do use my FT-857d for the VHF bands too now and then. I 'll just have to stick with that for now. :) :) :)

    I actually was kinda lucky, but I did loose a small amount of money if you look at it. I only had the FT-8800 for a few months. My friend bought the 7800 and never took it out of the box. He heard me complaining about the 8800 and suggested we trade radios. I said sure, because I had also some experience on a friends 7800. He was happy and so was I.

    ...but again, the BASE station idea for the 8800 didn't even cross my mind. Oh well, live and learn.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 31, 2008
  9. KB5PQL

    KB5PQL Ham Member QRZ Page

    I bought my dad an 8800R a few months ago and had a chance to play with it. I've never owned a yaesu radio and was totally impressed by it. I used it as a base set up and found that it runs cool and the audio is very warm and pleasant. I enjoyed the second receiver to monitor the 220 machine and the local PD :) I think it's worth the extra money simply because I could keep one receiver on anything but the ham bands without having to leave the ham bands. Good Luck!
  10. KD6WAG

    KD6WAG Guest

    You should check out the Yaesu 857d. For mobile HF radios, its small, compact, powerful and just a dream to operate!
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