FTDX101 critique on the Elecraft K4 forum

Lou W7HV

FYI, There is a recent thread on the Elecraft K4 reflector critiquing the FTDX101. It started as post to take the place of critiquing the K4 since nobody had yet gotten K4.  Some posters are regulars here too.  Our long "wish list" was re-posted there.  Here's the thread:  https://groups.io/g/Elecraft-K4/topic/n4ks_others_tell_us_about/81177040?  Here's an example of some of the comments:

Rob Sherwood
Mar 8  

The FTdx-101D/MP and FTdx10 have key click issues since the actual 10% to 90% measured rise time is less than half what the menu states.  Setting to the slowest 6ms rise time option is actually less than 3ms.  Selecting faster rise times in the menu make the key clicks even worse.


The waterfall and band scope blanks (erases) as soon as you transmit.  The slowest waterfall speed is too fast to  hold much history, but if I send one “dit”, let alone my call that takes 2 seconds, the waterfall history is gone.  Same thing if I push the PTT button on the microphone.


I used the FTdx10 during the recent CQ WW 160m CW contest.  It worked fine as far as copying weak signals in a contest environment.  I am anxious to see  how a K4 performs, since the FTdx10 was an ergonomic disappointment with the “as shipped” firmware.  I understand 101 owners have been waiting for a long time for a firmware update. 


As to transmit IMD on SSB, when the two-tone third-order IMD is better (lower) than the fifth-order IMD at 100 watts, that is a bad sign as to splatter.  The QST review of the Acom 1200S demonstrated that anomaly, and the published I/O curve above  half power was horrible. 


Rob, NC0B

Damon - KJ7E

I personally tested the IMD on my 101MP, at 50, 100 and 200 watts, before adjusting the PA bias at 200 watts -29 dBc 3rd order, about 10 db lower 4th and 10 lower on 5th.  After a good bias adjustment and balance, 3rd order improved to -32 at 200 watts (which is not bad at all).  -32 dBc is the same as the ARRL test at -38 PEP.  I only tested on 14.2 MHz however, as I only wanted to see if the bias adjustment made a difference.  Granted, this is the MP with the 50v Vcc VRF150's.