[CQ-Contest] K2 and contesting - Impressions?

Bill Coleman aa4lr at arrl.net
Thu Feb 5 07:53:56 EST 2004

On Jan 19, 2004, at 2:21 PM, K4BEV at aol.com wrote:

> I'd like to hear from anyone using a K2 in contests, especially RTTY 
> and CW.
> Your impressions of this radio - esp the receiver - under contest 
> conditions
> will be appreciated.

I've been using a K2 as my primary rig for contesting for over a year 
now. I have the K2/100 with the KAT100 tuner. I also have the SSB, 
Noise Blanker, 160m and DSP options. I've also used the AF filter 

Although my K2 has displaced an old Kenwood TS-430S, I've also used all 
three flavors of FT-1000MP, as well as the FT-1000D, the TS-930, 940, 
850 and several other contest rigs.

The K2 certainly sounds different than other rigs. The 
variable-bandwidth filter can be set to your tastes on CW. I have mine 
set to 1 kHz, 400 Hz and 160 Hz. I normally tune around in the 1 kHz 
position, which makes the band sound really quiet.

I found it difficult to hear any "sparkle" or IMD noise on the K2, even 
on a crowded band. When you tune far enough away from a very strong 
station, he disappears. Very unlike the TS-430S, especially on 10m, 
where one can hear a rumble from strong SSB stations several kHz away.

I'm extremely pleased with my K2. The controls have taken a bit of 
getting used to, and there are a few changes I would make to the 
firmware. My biggest beef is there's no single-button toggle for the RX 
antenna jack (part of the 160m option), which makes it less than 
useful. Although it is possible to buy the KRC2 remote control switch 
box and program separate buttons to turn the RX jack on and off.

I'm happy enough that I'd like to build a second K2 for SO2R operation.

Bill Coleman, AA4LR, PP-ASEL        Mail: aa4lr at arrl.net
Quote: "Not within a thousand years will man ever fly!"
             -- Wilbur Wright, 1901

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