• You can now help support WorldwideDX when you shop on Amazon at no additional cost to you! Simply follow this Shop on Amazon link first and a portion of any purchase is sent to WorldwideDX to help with site costs.

Build me a Ham Shack

After all the information has finally settled down in my head that FTdx10 is looking good, but the Elecraft KX3 may be my first radio. I'm thinking portable to learn the craft and antennas plus I can add on to the KX3 to make it a home station.
I would avoid QRP (~5 watts) for your first HF radio. Get a 100w radio. You will be frustrated trying to make contacts with 5 watts. Sure you will work some stations but you will be much more successful with 100w and a wire dipole.

The KX3 is a fantastic radio but it is expensive. Especially for just 5w. The matching Elecraft 100w amplifier is $1,200. So the cost of the KX3 and 100W amp is nearing $3,000.

The FTdx10 for the ICOM 7300 are better choices in my opinion. The ICOM 718 is a good radio but is very basic. As a new ham you will likely want to work FT8 Digital mode. The FTdx10 and 7300 are ready out of the box to connect to a computer and operate digital modes. The 718 will require a sound card interface (~$150), and an RS-232 connection to your computer (very few computers have RS-232 ports anymore).

Just my two cents. I have been in your shoes.
 
No QRP for first radio in my new shack. I did look into TenTec by word of mouth from Jason HamRadio2.0. I heard the lament about lack of parts. While Mike TenTec remains in business lack of parts has him frozen in time. Too bad they seem to be a good radio. Looking at Flex radios now. Another piece of artwork those radios. February has my time filled but March is looking good for my first purchase. I have learned a great deal but have barely scratched the surface in this new hobby. Thank you all for your replies.
 
@Riverman Alrighty, back in the shack. I did what I said I'd do. 2/27/22 and I passed the amateur extra exam. In fact all the studying has made me more interested in the hobby. It is fascinating and inspiring. I've read so much that I'll be interested in this for a long long time.
Too bad the cost of gear has jumped in price quite a bit from even two months ago. I hear that is normal, that is the fluctuation in price. So I begin the " buy a radio and antenna stage." I'll begin studying antennas for now. I bought a boxed set of antenna books from the ARRL. I am stubborn and will understand antennas much more than I do now. I'll plow through the subject. Some folks suggest to understand the challenge of having a good antenna. Some have suggested a good radio so you can hear your contacts. I'll get both quality items, plus all the ancillary equipment than has been mentioned but not discussed. A good mike, wire, cables, grounding stuff, power supply, analyzer and other items are needed as I don't own any of it. 5K was always an imaginary number, it's looking more like 8K, EASY. If that FTDX101MP gives me some sleepless nights...
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Shadetree Mechanic
Congratulations on the Extra. (y)

The 101MP would definitely be a wonderful radio. A lot of us are green in color and drooling right now. :giggle:
 
Last edited:
Chameleon makes a portable kit and the price is kind of steep, I've seen it in action and wondered if anyone here uses it. I'm thinking of getting an antenna that can be set up and taken down fairly easy. I will find out today how to connect my camera to this fool proof, easy peasey, foolproof, new Apple computer that changed just about every port known to man. I've bought several adapters with no luck yet, one of which was purchased at the Apple store. The employees are all in the genius class you know, and easily offended when you return their suggested products. Asked about products for Ham Radio and got a blank stare. Maybe I should call Yaesu ? Thanks in advance.
 
I'm sure with all the experience here you can help me avoid some pitfalls. I've 5k and want a first time Ham Shack. I am not interested in this HT I bought after the exam. I'll not explain here my journey through the pitfalls I've been in so far, it's posted elsewhere. I need some folk who are interested in keeping Amateur Radio growing. I'm 69 yrs old, live in an HOA, and think not only is Ham Radio a fun, interesting, challenging, deeply engaging and electrifying experience, it is a necessity for a free people to assist each other in remaining independent and self reliant. Another factor is emergency assistance for others from disasters both natural and otherwise. I did say HOA and most of my neighbors are good folk who believe the community boards keep them safe and secure. I've been kicked in the butt too many times to rely solely on pieces of paper stating rules and regs. Tornados can't read. Mobs don't obey rules. Food and water shortages may be solved by the National Guard but people can dehydrate days before the Guard can assemble. One radio can save a life. Two radios in conjunction can form an alliance. That's worth 5 grand, wouldn't you agree?
Put up a real antenna and tell the HOA police to stuff it. $500 used HF radio and a good antenna and feed line are all you need.
 
  • Like
Reactions: S&W357
I just purchased an ICOM 7700 with the LDG M-7700 external meter from a friends Estate that became a SK on 3/31/23.I Sold my ICOM 7600 which I Loved very much & I purchased it New. I have had the 7700 for a little over a week & I must say it's a BEAST of a radio in appearance & on the air.I use it to drive my ICOM PW-1 amplifier & they are a great combination. If it serves me as well as the 7600 it will be a great investment. It looks very nice & I will be adding a 22" monitor for the display because I can. Did I mention I Love ICOM radio gear? You may see the New shack picture on my QRZ.com page since I can't figure out where to find my saved pictures in this laptop. LOL de W4KVW
 
I was HUGE Kenwood fan for years...would own nothing else.
They produced some marginal stuff in the 2000's (TS-2000) IMHO was junk, they made it for 20 years and never really fixed the major issues! (Very poor ergonomics and it was DEAF on HF frequencies)
However, the NEW TS-890 and 990 series are VERY GOOD but $$$$$
Just examples.
Then started looking around Yaesu...have been a big fan ever since.
Nothing wrong with some ICOM's.
I have the IC-9100 (full dress version $3K in 2010) it's OK...had other ICOM's did not like the programming set-ups or receive audio (just me)
I like the 718 except no 6m!!!
Good entry/bare bones level rig!
The IC-7300 or IC-7610 in my book...well don't ask because I am not a fan!:eek::rolleyes::LOL:
IC-7700 Top notch...but no longer in production:(
All the Best
Gary
Trashing the HF Airways since 1979
The ICOM 7700 is Not available NEW but they are a few on the Used market & they are still an Amazing radio & I Love mine. de W4KVW
 

Attachments

  • IMG_3197.jpeg
    IMG_3197.jpeg
    2.6 MB · Views: 40
I just purchased an ICOM 7700 with the LDG M-7700 external meter from a friends Estate that became a SK on 3/31/23.I Sold my ICOM 7600 which I Loved very much & I purchased it New. I have had the 7700 for a little over a week & I must say it's a BEAST of a radio in appearance & on the air.I use it to drive my ICOM PW-1 amplifier & they are a great combination. If it serves me as well as the 7600 it will be a great investment. It looks very nice & I will be adding a 22" monitor for the display because I can. Did I mention I Love ICOM radio gear? You may see the New shack picture on my QRZ.com page since I can't figure out where to find my saved pictures in this laptop. LOL de W4KVW
Ok I figured out how to post pictures.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_3145.jpeg
    IMG_3145.jpeg
    2.5 MB · Views: 40
  • Like
Reactions: Rwb and Eldorado828

dxChat
Help Users
  • No one is chatting at the moment.