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  #51  
Old 03-07-2008, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by corsair23 View Post
Hants is the only member I know of that has a Kenwood.
I think SeldomSeen has a Kenwood.
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  #52  
Old 03-07-2008, 07:08 PM
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I'm leaning toward the VX-7R in silver (Chris H. stated the person he talked to say for some reason the lettering stays on better than on the black) from Ham City. Used ones, whether mobile rigs or HTs seem to be going for within $50 of new so I prefer new with warranty (unless you're lucky like UB and Romer ).
Jeff, I want to buy one of these as well. Want to see if they'll give us a discount if we buy two?

Matt
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  #53  
Old 03-07-2008, 09:57 PM
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I too have been seriously considering the Kenwood TM-71A and the TH-F6A combination. I think that this solution is compelling and the APRS and CBR would give me lots of options. The Sky Command is also über cool for HF control. I was put off by the cost (another expensive hobby), but this seemed like a good solution. I really wanted the HT first so that I could have the freedom to use it in more contexts than the mobile rig. With a good external antenna, the CLA power adapter and an external mike this would be great for CM.

Then I started digging into future protocols and the technology of the hobby (Seldm Seen gave me a nudge). D-Star is very likely to be the "future" protocol of choice and there are very few radios that suport it (iCom). So, I remain conflicted.

http://www.icomamerica.com/en/produc...1/default.aspx
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  #54  
Old 03-08-2008, 02:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Hulk View Post
Jeff, I want to buy one of these as well. Want to see if they'll give us a discount if we buy two?

Matt
Sure - although I'm still conflicted on what to buy...

I used Hants' spreadsheet as a template and checked a bunch of places for the best price. Right now the best price for a VX-7R is at Ham City for $276 IIRC. Not sure what shipping would run and if they charge tax though. I've given up on eBay pretty much. Used HTs and rigs going for darn near new price. Case in point was a used FT-8800R I was spying that sold for $295 today which is only ~$50 less than new
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  #55  
Old 03-08-2008, 07:57 AM
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If you guys are thinking about the VX-7R and are thinking about buying a new one, I would seriously consider the VX-6 or VX-3 instead.

The main difference between the -7 and -6 is that the VX-7 can do 6m, which in a HT is not a major thing (I've used 6m on my HT maybe 2 times and that was just to see if it worked). The problem with 6m on an HT is the antenna length, it's either REALLY long or REALLY inefficient. The stock antenna is mostly loading coil on 6m and works OK in town, but it's not gonna win any DX awards. As it is the 'good' antenna I use is designed for 2m/440MHz (it works OK on 220MHz, but it's no good on 6m) and is about 15" long. It's a Diamond SRH77CA, not a super heavy duty whip and it flops over with the radio at an angle, not to mention it looks pretty out of place on the small radio. An OK 6m HT antenna like the MH-510 is about two feet long and has a coil at the top, it is really unbalanced to the point that the radio won't stand up with the antenna on. If you have the radio on your belt, the MH-510 will smack you in the back of the neck, it's really awkward.

The VX-6 does 1.5W on 220MHz, while the VX-7R does 300mW (1/5th the power). When I bought my VX-7R Yaesu wasn't even calling it a quad band, but a tri-band 6m/2m/70cm, didn't even advertise it being able to do 220MHz.

The VX-3 is 2m and 70cm only, but has a better broadcast AM and FM receiver. That might be nice for hiking. It's supposed to have the best receiver of the Yaesu HTs. The only downside to the VX-3 is that it does not have a DTMF keypad (you could do DTMF with an external mic). But for me the reason I have a HT is for taking in the backpack and it's nice knowing the radio has the ability to do LiTZ without carrying the extra stuff.

Seriously, I would look around and see how much cheaper the VX-3 and VX-6 are before committing to the VX-7. IMO the VX-6 is the way to go. Just my $0.02.
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  #56  
Old 03-08-2008, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Corbet View Post
I PM'ed Hants, waiting for reply.

Another thing to consider before getting an HT for the time being. If you get the same brand HT/Mobile there are a few unique features from brand to brand. Kenwood had something I ran across while reading the owners manual but sorry I forgot what is was. But it will probably influence a Kenwood HT purchase if I end up with the Kenwood mobile.
Replied.

I was going to get the Kenwood V71A until I showed Caroline the ONE feature of APRS that she would care about -- internet tracking of me & the LC while we're in the backcountry. Ended up getting the D710A (built-in APRS). The d710a is basically the same RADIO as the v71a, with the addition of TNC & APRS functionality (and, yes, you can buy the TNC/face and turn your V71a into a D710a later).

The reason I went with the Kenwoods over the Yaesu or Icom's was primarily: Fully legal cross-band repeat. They can be configured to self-identify on both bands, and they support Remote Control (enabling/disabling CBR and other functionality via HT). I suspect, but have not confirmed, that they will actually do same-band repeat.

Unfortunately, I've been out of town since just after I receive my radios, and I head out again on Friday for two weeks. Doesn't look like I'll get any installing done until April.
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  #57  
Old 03-08-2008, 02:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mendocino View Post
Then I started digging into future protocols and the technology of the hobby (Seldm Seen gave me a nudge). D-Star is very likely to be the "future" protocol of choice and there are very few radios that suport it (iCom). So, I remain conflicted.

http://www.icomamerica.com/en/produc...1/default.aspx
So how well supported is this D-Star system? The more I read about it, the more interested I become. Safe to assume you need to be connected to a repeater that supports it? Or is it as simple as just purchasing a rig with D-Star?

Internet connection sounds pretty cool. Price of hardware doesn't
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  #58  
Old 03-08-2008, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Corbet View Post
...it will probably influence a Kenwood HT purchase if I end up with the Kenwood mobile.
From reading the manual with my F6a, it appears that the Remote Control functionality is probably a function that only works between specific Kenwood HT's and other specific Kenwood radios.

In my case, it looks like I have to pre-program a "key" into both units and do some other configuration to have them talk to each other remotely (for Remote Control). It is not simply DTMF codes at control time.

I've been pouring over band-plans & FCC regulations trying to figure out what frequencies I can use in key areas & what potential coordination I need to do to keep everyone happy. Nothing like diving into the deep end just as you're learning to doggy-paddle!
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  #59  
Old 03-08-2008, 10:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveInDenver View Post
Seriously, I would look around and see how much cheaper the VX-3 and VX-6 are before committing to the VX-7. IMO the VX-6 is the way to go. Just my $0.02.
Thanks Dave - Being so new to this sometimes we just tend to follow the herd . Sounds like I need to look more into the VX-6R etc. to see what the price difference is. If it isn't much I'll probably still with the VX-7R just for the commonality with the group aspect which can only help when I start asking questions.
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  #60  
Old 03-08-2008, 10:57 PM
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I only bought the VX-7r because I got one in mint condition for $180. I wouldn't have poped the coin for a new one.

You got some time, look out there and don't limit you view to Colorado. After all my new RTT came from Salt Lake City craiglist.
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