[amsat-bb] Re: Yaesu 847 vs. Icom 910

Bill Dzurilla billdz.geo at yahoo.com
Tue Feb 15 11:18:29 PST 2011

At long last, the IC-9100 received FCC approval last week, so it may finally be hitting the market.  I talked to an ICOM rep at the Orlando hamfest on Saturday, and she said they still do not have any in the USA.  There are photos on the ICOM website.  Still no official word on price, but it won't be cheap, perhaps even more than the $3000 mentioned by Jeff (I've heard speculation close to $4000).

I have 2 FT-847s and like them, especially in Europe where I can use it on 70mhz (4 meters).  Cons: only 50w out on 2 meters, problematic volume control and power switch, no 1296 mhz option, no internal antenna tuner, no VOX.

The TS-2000 has 100w on 2 meters, a 1296 mhz option, VOX, and an HF/50 mhz antenna tuner, but it does have the incurable birdie that inhibits reception on AO-27 and SO-50.  Kenwood apparently has no interest in providing a fix. 

The IC-910 is supposedly the best VHF/UHF radio of the group, but it does not do HF or 6 meters.

These are the only current options for a first class all-in-one setup for linear satellites.  They are similar in price on the used market, about $900-$1200.

Many opt instead for 2 separate radios, such as a pair of IC-7000s, FT-817s, FT-857, FT-897, FT-706 MKII, or a combo of any of these.  This is particularly attractive if you already have an all mode rig for 2 meters.  The cheapest route may be a pair of FT-817s, if you can live with the small knobs and controls and the 5w out (adequate for the sats with a good antenna, and if you want more you can buy a cheap 30w amp).  You can buy these used for under $400 each (the newer ND model is pricier).

Software such as SatPC32 or Ham Radio Deluxe controls the 2 radios so that the downlink frequency matches your uplink.  Stay away from the older radios that cannot be computer controlled.

It is theoretically possible to work the linear sats with a single, non-duplex radio.  As the tracking programs are supposed to set transmit frequency automatically to match the spot where your receiver is tuned, it should not be necessary to hear your downlink.  I made a few contacts this way with a single IC-7000, but it is not recommended, as the tracking programs are often a bit off with the frequency calculation.

There are also some intriguing transverter options but I'm not familiar with those.  If interested, check out the Elecraft, Down East Microwave, and Flex Radio.

73, Bill NZ5N    

> Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2011 06:55:08 -0500
> From: "Jeff KB2M" <kb2m at comcast.net>
> Subject: [amsat-bb] Re: Yaesu 847 vs. Icom 910
> To: "'zach hillerson'" <qstick333 at yahoo.com>,
> <amsat-bb at amsat.org>
> Message-ID: <003c01cbcd07$31bc24b0$95346e10$@net>
> Content-Type: text/plain;   
> charset="iso-8859-1"
>  Icom is coming out with a new hf/sat rig the IC-9100. It
> looks to be a bit
> pricy at around $3000 or so, but it will be newer
> technology. I sold my 910
> to make room for one on my desk :)  I did keep my
> trusty 14 year old 847 I
> purchased new. I would recommend the 847 over the 910, and
> if you have the
> means the 9100 would be my choice...
> 73 Jeff kb2m
> -----Original Message-----
> From: amsat-bb-bounces at amsat.org
> [mailto:amsat-bb-bounces at amsat.org]
> On
> Behalf Of zach hillerson
> Sent: Monday, February 14, 2011 21:01 PM
> To: amsat-bb at amsat.org
> Subject: [amsat-bb] Yaesu 847 vs. Icom 910
> I am finally in the market for a base station radio for
> satellites.? I
> should mention that I am also planning to install a wire
> dipole in the
> backyard for HF work, but convenience shouldn't be the
> reason to buy/not to
> buy a radio.....
> It seems that the Icom 910 and Yaesu 847 are the two main
> transceivers in
> base use for satellites.? I know some folks are using the
> Kenwood TS2000, bu
> i t I understand thatit has a "birdie" that makes operation
> on a couple FM
> satellites challenging.? I am hoping to work both the
> linear and fm birds
> with this transceiver.? 
> Is there a BB favorite?? Have I just opened up a bad can of
> worms?? I just
> want to make sure that I am purchasing the proper parts the
> first time....


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