Re: ic9700?

ian hope (2E0IJH)

A Ic9700 is like a Ft991, You won't stop people using them as the average user doesn't understand the issue's and the suppliers don't make people aware of them.

Sent: Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 4:10 PM
From: "SAM JEWELL via" <jewell@...>
Subject: Re: [UKMicrowaves] ic9700?
As you say, Conrad, a microwave reflector and I think Ben's comments, originally, were mainly directed at something to replace the FT817 as a microwave IF.
I think my views on the IC9700 are pretty much in line with what others have observed, when it is used as contest or well located portable rig, or indeed from home in the heart of a well occupied area (amateur radio) in Europe.
Inevitably there will be Ic9700 users, from less well sited home locations,  and these may well give problems on 2m or 70cm to those within a reasonable tropo range of other band users. But I don't think these users are going to give up using their IC9700 or other rigs that easily.  If they do you may well achieve the desire for a quiet band. Just not in way you would wish!
73 de Sam
On 13 Apr 2021, at 14:41, Conrad, PA5Y <g0ruz@...> wrote:

I have no desire to take you to task Sam, not that you'd care if I did :-)
Your comments are correct and in context. 
I just report what I measured with the FSWP and as you know I tried an IC9700 on RX during a a big EU contest on 144 and 432 and rapidly realised it's limitations. I don't live on a hill and this was with a single 12 on 2m and a 26 ele on 432MHz. It got completely clobbered sadly. I also have QRO and had misgivings about TX but you have covered that. On 23cms it was a step up but I now have a Kuhne transverter and the K3S which is very fine indeed. I was keen on buying one at the time for the convenience factor.
It is better than my TS2000X on receive but on TX the TS2000 is significantly better at wider separations. I agree that on uwave bands the transverters with synth LOs PN will dominate, and of course antenna beamwidths make this less of a problem. 
If I was a uwave only operator I would be much less concerned. This is after all a uwave reflector so apologies if my VHF contester head got the better of me.
Conrad PA5Y

From: <> on behalf of SAM JEWELL via <jewell@...>
Sent: 13 April 2021 14:38
To: <>
Subject: Re: [UKMicrowaves] ic9700?

As a reviewer of the IC9700 in PW, when it first came out, I did a comprehensive set of measurements in discussion with a number of other, mainly international, equipment reviewers.
I think it qualifies me to have an informed opinion, even if you disagree with it.
I also have, and occasionally use, one of these rigs myself. I am also known for previously producing a range of transverters from 6m to 23cm, but used with an Elecraft K3.
I maintain a keen interest in VHF radio performance.
I am concerned at some of the comments I read on here.
The IC9700 is not a bad rig. Its transmit composite noise is not the best. It can be bettered by many HF rigs and transverters. It is a lot better than many of the earlier (and some current) shack in a box (multiband) rigs, both on transmit composite noise and on receiver dynamic range. A few (very few) of the earlier single band 144MHz transceivers are good on receive and transmit, but can be pretty good when fitted with a Mutek front end board.  Few of the 432 and 1296MHz single band rigs have an acceptable  performance by modern standards.
An IC9700 is not a good choice for those who want to operate contests on one of its 'native' bands, particularly from a high hill, using a high gain antenna and with a 'linear amplifier.  It is worth noting that In common with many of this generation of rig, turning down the power output, for QRP operation, results in (noticeably)much poorer transmit composite noise than when running at full power.  A masthead preamplifier is likely to result in noticeably worse receiver performance in the presence of strong inband and out of band signals.
Used as an IF rig with some of the current low(ish) cost transverters, it is likely that performance will be limited by the transverter anyway. Transverter LO phase noise performance has deteriorated in recent years, mainly as a result of incorporating a synthesiser to improve frequency stability for FT8 and some other digital modes.
Given the above observations I would say that if you want the convenience of a modern multiband rig, that will be used with a microwave band transverter, then it is a reasonable choice. It is certainly no worse than that popular transverter driver rig, the FT817 and 818, but it does have some very convenient facilities like the frequency spectrum display and ability to record sound to the SD card. So does the new IC705, but I have not had a chance to play with or measure the performance of one.
Some of the previous generation rigs are beginning to show their age, both in terms of performance and reliability. Many spare parts are becoming more difficult to find. Do note that when you buy an older rig, you are buying a liability!
The almost unforgivable error, perpetrated by ICOM in the IC9700, of having a single SEND output, is neatly overcome with The DX Shop PTT multiplier, when (if) you want to connect a PA or drive a selection of transverters.
I'm sure a few subscribers to this reflector will take me to task for not condemning the IC9700, for their own reasons, but it is important to regard the IC9700 in the context of what else you might choose to buy and use.
73 de Sam, G4DDK

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