Let me offer my two cents worth.
I have been the very happy owner of an FT1000D since 1991 - a very nice
radio indeed, especially with the Inrad roofing filter and W8JI noise
blanker modification. Still, after almost 15 years I felt an upgrade to
the newer technology was warranted. Plus, I simply wanted a new rig.
Being a very happy Yaesu owner, I was naturally very inclined toward the
FT9000. So, I subscribed to the FT9000 reflector. I also read the QST
review of the 9000D with great interest. Frankly, aside from the raw
test results, I though the QST review was next to useless, and very
underwhelming. I also read the posts on the FT9000 reflector for months.
After considerable research, it became clear that there were many
problems with the 9000 and that the factory service was not commensurate
with the expenditure ($11,500.00 for the "D") - all well documented on
I came to the conclusion that the purchase would be a "gamble." Pay
$11,500 and keep my fingers crossed that the rig would perform as
advertised (those who have working rigs with no, or only minor, problems
say they are fantastic and I have no doubt that's true, as it should be
for a rig costing over $11k). I could be unlucky and get stuck with what
seemed like one of many rigs with significant issues - and face the
nightmare of having sunk $11k into a rig and getting blown off by the
factory. I simply could not afford to lose that bet, so I abandoned the
idea of owning a 9000.
I know I am not alone in my thinking, which brings me to the point of
this post. I think at least two things could be going on - (a) the
writers of the latest QST review are trying (unconsciously or otherwise)
to counter much of the negative perception surrounding the 9000 and/or
(b) the rig, when it works, is an extremely fine radio (again based on
what people who own working radio have said on the reflector) thus
justifying the fawning. My guess it is a little of both...
P.S. I am now the owner of an Orion II which I have been using for the
last 10 days, doing hours and hours and hours of A/B testing against my
FT1000D in a variety of conditions (all on the low bands) including the
recent ARRL contest. The Orion was an outstanding performer on 160
last weekend. The real test will be the 160 SSB contest this weekend.
That will reveal a lot...
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