Your opinion on station upgrade

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by kc6unm, Nov 26, 2006.

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  1. kc6unm

    kc6unm QRZ Member QRZ Page

    Been selling off some odds and ends and saving up a little and getting ready to add some new capabilities to the station. The result of this is that I am sitting with only an FT-736, W21AT (used as a mobile) and a good HF external tuner. They don't do each other much good. The objective is to have all modes HF-UHF base station. I'll have $700-800 plus the option of selling the 736 and the W21AT.
    Here goes.

    #1 Sell it all (minus tuner) add my cash and buy a new 897D for home and a new 857D for mobile. (hard to believe but thats actually a possibility for the money)

    #2 Buy a TS-480SAT (700-800 used) to go with the 736 and keep using the HT mobile.

    #3 Same thing only TS-570SG

    #4 Sell the 736 add my cash and buy a TS-2000.

    No contesting here. Just want a good solid station with a little dx here and a little leo sat there repeater net check in etc. etc.

    Thanks for looking and if theres something I've missed, let me know what you would do.
  2. KI4ITV

    KI4ITV Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'll take DOOR #4 Donald. [​IMG]

    I think the TS-2000 is the bee's knees, as far as the do-all, be-all rigs go. It was on my short list of rigs to buy, but I became anxious at a hamfest and bought a FT-897 before I could save up to get the TS-2000.
    I like the FT-897, but the TS-2000 has some features built in that I would find very handy on occasion.
    Overall I am happy with my radio and it would not be a BAD choice, but there may be better ones, if you have the time or the money.
    Good luck, and remember, there is only one "last radio" and it's usually not the next one you get. [​IMG]
  3. KA5PIU

    KA5PIU Guest


    I have a FT-897D that I use along with the VX-6R talkie.
    The FT-857D does what the FT-897D does but no place for a battery pack, but supports a detachable face.
    My other combo is a Kenwood TS-430 and a TH-f6 talkie.
    The TS-2000 is a nice radio but a lot of money.
    With that said, the FT-857D or FT-897D would be my choice.
  4. N9FE

    N9FE Ham Member QRZ Page

    KC6UNM: If you can afford the ts2000, go for it, you won't regret it.. N9FE
  5. kc6unm

    kc6unm QRZ Member QRZ Page


    2 votes for #4

    tnx and keep em coming.
  6. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Similar to the situation I was in a few years ago.

    I had a loaded Ft-736 and an ICOM 706.

    I ended up selling the lot, getting an IC-746 that covers 160-2, and an FT-817 portable. It was my intention to buy a newer model IC-706, but I never did, and now the FT-857 looks like a good choice as does the IC-7000.

    I miss the 220 band on the 736 - that's hard to replace - as are the satellite capabilities.

    I know people who have the Kenwood and love it.

    Depending on your specific interests you might find a couple other rigs interesting or appealing.

    The Elecraft K2 with it's new set of transverters for VHF/UHF would provide comparable capability. It will cost you a bit more than the TS-2000 and it is a kit. But K2 owners just rave about the receivers in them.

    The Software Defined Radios by Flex radio systems are also revolutionary. You will need a high-end PC to run it, and again, the radio is not cheap, but does have available transverters for all bands. I believe this will be my next rig. A friend of mine is itching to try some new modes with his that we can't do on a conventional rig. He's bought a surplus 220 Mhz. ACSB repeater, and the Flex radio will do ACSB.

    If you have any interest in the TS-2000's Sky Command system, you could get the appropriate HT and use Sky Command while you stroll around the neighborhood, working HF DX. This becomes legal on Dec. 15th.

    You should also consider the idea that it's best to spend twice as much on antennas as on radios. Maybe you'd be happier with IC-718 and a nice tower and yagi at 70 feet.
  7. W5MEJ

    W5MEJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    If it were me, I think I would go with option #2 or #3. That FT-736 is still a hard rig to beat for VHF/UHF work.

  8. N3BIF

    N3BIF Guest

    A "dormitory" refrigerator.
  9. kc6unm

    kc6unm QRZ Member QRZ Page

    I could actually use one of those..............

    I can't believe that many hams have looked and have absolutely no opinion. Not your typical hams on QRZ I guess.

    Oh well. Thanks to those of you that took the time. I'm about a month away from anything so I'll let this run till then. It is a tough choice. The last poster who recommends keeping the FT-736. I here ya. What a great reciever this thing has. I could get the 480SAT then add 220 and 1.2 in the future and I could really have it all. Only thing about the 736 is the low power and thats a lot more money down the line and no guarantee I could find the modules. I guess I could save a little longer and get the TS-2000 with 1.2 and then I'd only be missing 220.
    The Yaesu option nets me 2 radios but no chance for 220 or 1.2 but theres always transverter route.
    It's a pickle and once I spend this money, won't be any more radio money for A WHILE.

  10. N9VO

    N9VO XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    You really haven't given enough information to formulate a good plan. First off, you made no mention of upgrading. Are you going to stay a tech or upgrade. I personally think rigs like the 857/897/2000 are a bit much to invest in IF you are going to stay uhf/vhf. Shacks in a box work ok but do have shortcomings. For instance it's hard to listen to hf if you only have one rig in the shack and want to work 2 meters. And in radios, size does matter! A 897 or 2000 would be much easier to operate than a 857 with it's miniscule controls and layers of menues. I had one and it worked great, just a pain to use in the shack. No comparasion with a full size rig. But then again do you need to spend that kind of money for vhf/uhf?[​IMG]?

    How about the operating area you live in. Would you really have much use for 220 and 1.2? Only you can answer that but for instance both of those would be a waste in my area.

    I don't think it's a matter of not really caring, I think it's just we've seen this many times. A lot of what you want will probably come from your buddies and what they operate. Good luck in your choice.  [​IMG]
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