I prefer ergonomics like a few knobs and butons, not a dozen menues that require paging thru the manual to operate. The newest bells and whistles are not my cup of tea.
Simple and functional rigs for me.
Old School Hamming.
I like a radio that is not a computer with some RF circuits added as an afterthought.
73.....JD, FISTS #3853,cc 455,SKCC # 1395,tribune #12,
Official US Taxpayer
I'm coming to believe that there's not all that much difference, operationally, between any of the top-tier radios today. IMHO, it comes down to personal preferences on things like menus vs. buttons, portable vs. base operation equipment. I prefer knobs and switches to menus, and have a radio for field operation, so my base does not do double duty. I also have a lot of room for hardware, so physical size matters little to me for some rigs.
Others value small footprint and lightweight - nothing wrong with that. To buy one vs. the other just on the raw performance numbers seems to me the wrong way to approach it, but that's just me.
This Space Intentionally Left Blank
I think the K3 has a bit of a cult following, because it really is different. For one thing, it's a kit! For another, they have a large, active on-line support group as well as very good "factory" customer service, possibly better than anyone else's.
Elecraft's done a great job.
What if soy milk is just regular milk introducing itself in Spanish?
I'd say they are both fine rigs. The K3 out-performs the Kenwood, but the degree of difference probably wouldn't be noticable to the average ham in most circumstances.
The 590 probably provides the best bang for the buck available today. I wouldsuggest, though, that anyone looking at the 590 also consider the Ten Tec Eagle.