Best Ham Radio - Choosing a Rig

Choosing my next Rig: What’s the best one for me?

My old (2012) Yaesu FT-950 lost output! I was getting maybe 5 watts out on any one band! What to do? These days, I am the proverbial “store-bought” ham … not even kit building! So the choices were to sell as a parts rig on eBay and put the proceeds towards a new rig so shipping the rig all the way to California for factory repair since no repair facilities are on the East Coast. Time for a lot of research!

I have always been a very analytical person. I guess that’s why I was so successful at my occupation: Air Traffic Controller and Air Traffic Manager.

Fortunately, I have been tracking new transceivers and their prices for some time.  To this end, I created an Excel spreadsheet. I got all the manufacturer transceiver brochures from HRO and, using the specs from my FT-950 as a base, listed the comparative item and assigned it points, plus or minus, as that transceiver compared to my FT-950 specs. Admittedly, this “point-value” system is subjective. Did I say, I was analytical?

The results: If I were to buy a new radio today, it would the Icom IC-7300. I am happy to share this spreadsheet with all my friends worldwide:

Oh, yes! In the end, I decided to repair my FT-950 at the Yaesu factory … they did a good job; quite reasonably priced … see you on the air!

Layne, AE1N

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