[amsat-bb] Re: Question about radios

K5OE k5oe at aol.com
Tue May 3 11:10:40 PDT 2011

I can tell already this is an old thread that will go on for a while…
Money is almost never “not an issue,” so fitting the radio to the user is always a matter of preferences and priorities.  If you want HF + satellite in one rig, the TS-2000 and the FT-847 work, but not the IC-910.  If you want 23 cm in the rig, the TS-2000 and the IC-910 work, but not the FT-847.  If you want to power your preamp(s) without any external wiring, the FT-847 and IC-910 work, but not the TS-2000.  If you want a built-in antenna tuner (HF), or a built-in TNC, or built-in voice recorder, then only the TS-2000 works.  If you want lots of 3rd party software, then the FT-847 is your best bet.  
I agree with Ed, the IC-9100 seems priced outrageously for what it is—reminiscent of the IC-970H.  Maybe I’ve just lost a sense for the market—look at the price of new cars!  For a strictly satellite rig, an IC-821H is still a very good radio selling for half the price of a used IC-910 (and just a bit more than a FT-736—the FT-847 of a previous generation).  
A decade ago I bought a TS-2000 for a number of reasons, including the ability to work the HF satellites (RS-12/13 and AO-7) in one rig.  I sold an FT-990 and an IC-820 and had money left over.  I still consider it really good value.  While I have never liked the controls as well as my Yaesu HF rig(s), I came to really appreciate the DSP functions and the CW features and had great fun with the TNC on the ISS, pacsats (especially UO-22, RIP), and APRS.  I added 1.2 GHz when AO-40 was launched.  I scored higher in HF contests with it than I ever had with the non-DSP Yaesu rig.  I wasn’t bothered (too much) by the infamous birdie because I could tune around it with the combination of a high-gain UHF antenna and a preamp, but do consider it a fatal flaw to anyone considering the radio for use on AO-27 or SO-50 with a low-gain antenna system.  
I’ll end with an echo of Dee’s comment below:  spend your time and money on the antennas, as almost any radio will work with a good signal.
Jerry, K5OE
--- original message ---
Having the FT-847 since early 1998 and observing the IC-910 I would 
recommend both over the TS-2000 or new IC-9100 on basis of bucks 
spent.  I realize both the 847 and 910 are out of production but good 
used units are available for <$900.
The TS-2000 "birdie" issue is unforgivable for the money spent 
(Unless you are not interested in satellites which the FT-857/897 
would then be my choice).  The IC-9100 is outrageously expensive and 
would only be a choice if you have no HF equipment.  It is still too 
new for a complete opinion (for what you spend you could have top 
notch transverters and a new K3*, or buy two FT-817 with amps for a lot less).
*Note: the K3 is not able to do duplex at this time, but I have an 
idea how it could by using the dual receiver IF.
My K3 with DEMI transverter is much superior to the FT-847 on 2m, but 
that is only for very weak-signal applications (satellites are on the 
strong side of weak-signal if you get my drift), and use on HF (which 
is not the question that was asked).
73, Ed - KL7UW
At 06:46 AM 5/3/2011, Dee wrote:
>Being in this end of the hobby for "many" years, I have learned that
>sometimes the choice comes down to what you can afford.  While the TS2000 is
>a nice radio, with the birdie problem, it leaves a question.  Ihave had 2
>Icom 910's for many years and even have one of them adapted with the 1.2ghz
>module.  Both have worked flawless and have been more than adequate.  The
>new ICOM 9100 (which you ask about) is a bit pricey for the bands provided.
>I have been following the production of the 9100 and it has become out of an
>average hams price range.  While the specs are very good, you can achieve
>the same effect with a TS2000 - Icom 910- Yaesu 847 and even the older icom
>820 (?) -
>Once again, I have always advised sat ops to spend the money on the antennas
>and coax as this is where you'll find the most advantage for your operation.
>Good luck and go to the AMSAT website to obtain a truck load of info
>pertaining to satellite station construction and operating advice.
>Dee, NB2F
>NJ AMSAT Coordinator
>-----Original Message-----
>From: amsat-bb-bounces at amsat.org [mailto:amsat-bb-bounces at amsat.org] On
>Behalf Of Alvaro Gaviria
>Sent: Monday, May 02, 2011 4:51 PM
>To: amsat-bb at amsat.org
>Subject: [amsat-bb] Question about radios
>Hello all,
>Can someone tell what is better for satellite work, the Kenwood TS-2000X or
>the Icom IC- 9100 ??
>Best regards

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