May 4, 2004
Recently I was invited to a friendís QTH, locally, to take a look at his new IC-7800 he had just received that day, April 28th. Of course I accepted and rushed over after dinner to take a look at ICOMís newest technology for Amateur Radio. My impression of the radio is that it is fantastic. I operated the radio during the 1-hour visit and thought I would put together my comments.
1). Both receivers are very quite with equal functionality. (Two identical receivers).
2). The selectivity on SSB seems to be excellent (I did not have time to check CW).
3). Ease of operation and function of each receiver is very good.
4). We did not have time to do compare via an A/B test but will do so in the near future.
5). Receivers have adjustable audio treble, bass and bandwidth.
6). Features and functions of the receivers are very similar to the IC-756Pro2.
Transmitter: (SSB was tested and not CW. I used an SM-6)
1). The output is 200+ watts, key-down and is adjustable between 0 and 200.
2). The SSB talk-power is 200+ watts.
3). The transmit audio has adjustable treble, bass, and bandwidth to 2.9khz.
4). On-the-air reports on 40M SSB were excellent.
5). The transmitter has improved cooling technology and venting.
Front Operating Panel:
1). Excellent layout and easy to understand/use.
1). Easy to understand and similar to the Pro2 series.
1). Appearance for my eyes was very good with clear color and distinction.
2). All 3 meters available are selectable, clear and readable. They are digital in nature and not analog as on the Pro series. One of the meter selections does simulate an analog meter and it does it very well.
3). The different settings for the screen are easy to adjust and modify to each personís preference.
4). The screen is larger than the Pro2 and 781 to accommodate the additional features.
5). The screen is easy to read and understand functionally.
I operated the radio on and off for an hour after reading many sections of the book and I am very impressed. The radio is a very nice looking radio with excellent feature, function, and layout. I did not use test lab equipment to completely test the radio nor did I do an A/B test. I plan on doing an A/B test in the very near future.
My experience with high-end radios has been with ICOM, Kenwood, Collins, and Yeasu equipment and I currently own the IC-781, IC-756Pro2, IC-751A, and IC-706MkII. The IC-7800 is definitely a superior radio to these and the TS-950SDX, TS-850SAT, FT-1000D, and KWM-380 that I have owned.
As for price-point, I will have to leave that to each individuals own opinion and discussion. That is not the intent of this article.
Thank you for taking the time to read my article and I hope you have found this short review interesting. I look forward to going back and doing more operating and testing and also look forward to owning one soon. Let me thank K5AND for his generosity in letting me visit his home and operate his new radio.
73 and take care.