K1AR asked me to post this so you guys would quit picking on him and move
the conversation to something controversial that didn't include him.
I have noticed what I'll call key clicks are getting worse and worse
on the bands. Normally, this phenomina can be observed when signals are
VERY strong. The same signal that produces clicks at 40 over S9, will
appear "clean" at S9.
I made a post to CQ-Contest about this subject and received a few messages
that suggested that receivers were the problem, and not transmitters. I
did get one message from a European who happened to take some time on
Sunday of the ARRL DX CW contest to make note of offending stations he
found on 10 meters. This station was using an Icom 746 with 500hz filters
in both IFs, and his noise blanker was turned off. No noise reduction or
DSP was used either. Antenna was a 5 element mono band yagi at 33'. He
noted that the band was "quiet" with many loud signals.
I took his list of callsigns (he prefers to remain anonymous) and asked
for rig types from the stations he noted as having the problem. Here is
CALLSIGN RADIO AMP QSK PTT VOX
W4AN FT1000MP AL-1500 N N Y
K2UA FT1000MP AL-1500 N Y N
K1ZZ FT1000MP L7 ? ? Y
K9NS FT1000D Henry 3K ? ? ?
W4ZV FT1000MP LK800 N N Y
K1AM TS940 Alpha ? ? ? ?
KR1G FT1000MP Acom ? ? ?
K1KI FT1000MP Alpha 86 N ? ?
KC1XX IC-781 AL-1200 N N Y
K3LR IC-781 KS9K HB N N Y
vE3EJ IC-775 Alpha 87a N N Y
W4KZ FT1000MP Alpha 78 N N Y
W4MR FT1000MP AL-1200 N N Y
N3RD FT1000MP Acom N N Y
W3LPL FT1000MP 3-1000 HB N Y N
UA3AB FT1000MP MKV Acom N Y N
KR1G FT1000D Acom N N Y
W3PP FT1000MP TenTec N N Y
NA4K IC-765 & 1000mp none N N Y
HG6N FT990 HB N Y N
KB1H FT1000MP MKV Alpha 77 ? ? ?
K4WI FT1000D Alpha 86 ? ? ? ***
W4NF FT1000MP Alpha 374A ? ? ? ***
K1XM FT1000MP AL-1200 ? ? ? ***
K3CR FT1000MP AL-1200 ? ? ? ***
K3NM IC-775 or 765 Titan or HB ? ? ***
K5RX TS950 Alpha 89 ? ? ? ***
KG9X FT1000MP none ? ? ? ***
K9MA FT1000D AL-82 / SB220 ? ? ***
K8AZ FT1000MP's 8877's ? ? ?
N4AO FT1000MP MKV Titan N Y N
*** - rig type found from contester station database.
There were a few calls I could not find rigs for and they include: HA3A
HA4FF, HA5MK/7, HG6N, HG8Z, K5YAA, LY5W, N2LT, RZ3A, S52ZW and SP8NR.
The reporting station said there were plenty of loud stations with clean
signals that he did not note. He said one of the loudest with a clean
signal was K1EA (IC-781).
77% of this group using Yaesu FT1000X radios.
I have always said the IC-775 and Kenwood TS940 were problematic in this
regard, and if I include them in the list the number becomes 87%.
Note that not a single TenTec radio is mentioned (Tom Rauch recently
tested an Omni and told me that it was the cleanest modern day transmitter
he has tested).
Also note, no tube type radios.
At this point you might say to yourself "Well probably 75% of the
contesters out there are using FT1000X radios". Maybe! So I ran a poll
on contesting.com asking for what type of contest radios people were using
on HF in CW contests. http://www.contesting.com/survey/35 The results
reveal that of the people who responded (796), only 32% of them were using
FT1000X radios. Another 6% using the TS-940 (another offender). 12% are
using TenTec radios.
Maybe this doesn't mean anything. Maybe the people who are loud enough to
produce big signals on 10 meters in Europe are also the same people using
FT1000X radios. Maybe the people responding to the survey spend more time
answering surveys than they do operating the radio. I don't know. I am
just presenting this information for discussion.
I would like to see a number of stations using "good" receivers in the WPX
contest in May to make note of stations they observe clicking. One person
who's opinion I respect highly said that he has noticed that listening on
a IC-781 will be clean when a FT1000MP isn't on the same frequency. So
observations should be done using a radio not prone to overload (IC781,
R4C, TS830, TS930, TS850).
Solving this problem
N7DD posted a possible solution to this problem on the TopBand reflector
which can be reviewed at
I plan to try to fix my FT1000MPs if possible. I hope the rest of you
will do the same.
Bill Fisher, W4AN
PS: I didn't run spell check on this message. Please send your english
comments to my mom so she can say "I told you so" then next time I talk
to her on the phone.
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