I got a wild hair a couple of days ago. I decided to switch all of my ham radio gear over from ICOM to Yaesu. There are various reasons for this. I’ve listed these in order of importance, 1 being the highest.
- The ICOM IC-9700 has a really annoying problem. In order to sound good (or anywhere close), the mic gain for DV mode must be set much lower than the mic gain for FM mode. Switching modes requires adjusting the mic gain. Every time. ICOM knows about this and no solution is forthcoming.
- I came to terms with the fact that D-Star is the worst sounding digital voice mode. Yaesu’s C4FM is probably the best. Even though I crossmode quite a bit, using the better mode as a foundation makes sense.
- I’ve been wanting to try the Yaesu FT-710.
- The ICOM ID-52A is a great handheld. But it was sitting around not getting used most of the time. I’ll always prefer operating on a base rig.
- Two of my ICOM radios were fairly expensive. Both the IC-9700 and ID-52A are the highest-priced radios in their class. Although some might argue there is nothing else in their class. Let’s just say they were both way more radio than I needed. And getting the money out of them was appealing.
- The ICOM IC-9700 and ICOM IC-7300 are twin brothers. If I was going to sell my IC-7300 to buy a Yaesu HF rig… that’s one less reason to keep the IC-9700.
Long story short…
- ICOM IC-9700
- ICOM IC-7300
- ICOM ID-5100A
- ICOM ID-52A
- Yaesu FTDX-10
- Yaesu SP-30 external speaker
- Yaesu M-70 microphone
- Yaesu FTM-200DR x 2
- Yaesu FT-70DR
I initially bought the FT-710 and tried it for about a week. Then I took it back to HRO and swapped it for a Yaesu FTDX-10.
The FTM-200DR is the perfect VHF/UHF radio for me. I have zero need or desire to have the dual-receive feature. I’ve had the FTM-300DR and FTM-400DR before. I prefer the FTM-200. It does exactly what I want it to do. My plan is to use one FTM-200 on my desk. And the other will serve as a node radio for my WiRES-X node (along with the HRI-200 I already had).
I’ve always heard good things about the Yaesu FT-70DR handheld, so I figured I’d try it. I’ve had the FT-2DR, FT-3DR, and FT-5DR. Those radios were all considerable overkill for what I need in a handheld.
I sold most of my gear on the QRZ.com for-sale forum. If you list something for the right price there it will sell within minutes. My IC-9700 and IC-7300 didn’t last an hour.