My First Encounter with an IC-7800

by Glenn R. Johnson WGJ

(based on my IC-7800 Yahoo! Group posting of April 13, 2004)

Last Friday I spent 12 hours in the cockpit of a new IC-7800.   S M O O T H   &   C L E A N   !!!!!  

What a world-class radio! Mr. Inoue and his team have given the world a wonderful radio. It may sound trite, but there is nothing like this radio to compare it to.  

The pictures on the brochures do not do the rig justice. The resolution of the screen is far far better than expected. It works FB with DXBase and Writelog, the logging and contest software I use. (Yes, VFO B is not read by either program.yet. Ive had assurances that this will be fixed with firmware upgrades. However, VFO B can be used by program controls for split, etc.)  

I can tell you that Ill be doing a lot more RTTY and it is SO EASY from the plug-in keyboard! No, it doesnt replace the contest programs, but for grabbing that RTTY spot or for just rag-chewing, it is too easy!  

Here is a screen shot of my second RTTY QSO. Not all of the screen is shown, but look at the information and resolution!!! Yes, there are two tuning indicators: the classic mark/space (off the picture at top of screen) and the waterfall on the right. 

The CW performance is unbelievable. After finding my CW pitch, 50 Hz filtering is SO CLEAN and quiet. One would never know it is 50 Hz!. The noise reduction and roofing filters are superb. QSK? Jeeze, I forgot it wasnt duplex! 

Like any new complex HF radio, theres a learning curve before things become second nature, just like going from a Ford Escort to a Lexus or Mercedes. Its a great radio! Its not your fathers ICOM 781! Even if the radio cost 1/3 to of what it does, there would be complainers. Please dont say anything bad about this radio until youve had a test drive. Forget the impressive specs..just like those about cars. I love the looks, ride and feel this luxury car gives. Its not for everyone. Some people would rather travel in an Escort. Most of us would prefer the luxury car if we had a choice. An Elecraft might have similar specs, but this isnt an Elecraft. (Ive operated an Elecraft, and there is nothing wrong with an Elecraft. It is fun and cute!) The IC-7800s will start shipping in the U.S. very soon! THANK YOU ICOM !!!  

73! Glenn WGJ

Glenn WGJ operating the IC-7800 in the shack at Icom America HQ, Bellevue, WA.
Glenn WGJ operating the IC-7800 in the shack at Icom America HQ, Bellevue, WA. Photo by WGJ.


The IC-7800 RTTY screen, with waterfall display on right.
The IC-7800 RTTY screen, with waterfall display on right. Photo by WGJ.
The test report enclosed with my IC-7800.
The test report enclosed with my IC-7800. Image courtesy WGJ.
Copyright  2004, Glenn R. Johnson WGJ (including images). All rights reserved.
Glenn's text edited and page created by A. Farson VA7OJ/AB4OJ.
Last updated: 09/25/2019

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