Friday, November 14, 2008

VX-6r a great radio!

In amateur radio you have a few different users.
  • Commercial radio users
  • Amateur radio users
  • Homebrew radio users
These all have their different pros and cons. Some people favor Commercial radios versus Amateur radios. In my opinion Amateur radios are my first choice, because they have lots of different tools built in.

For instance take the VX-6r a tri-band handheld, 144 MHz, 430 MHz, 222 MHz. The first two bands are the most popular VHF/UHF Amateur bands in Southern California. This radio has tons of different features that I enjoy having. Many of them are listed Here which shows full specs and features for the VX-6.

Some, but not all, options are as follows:
  • Mic gain control
  • Password protected
  • Submersible for up to 3ft for 30 mins
  • 24 memory banks
  • Memory bank continuous scanning
  • CW training feature
  • Very bright white LED light
And the list goes on... There are a ton of features, and they are all handy. you can also preform a mod on this radio to open up full TX ability. Warning: If you do this mod, ONLY TX on 6m, 2m, 220 MHz, 70cm, and FRS/GMRS Freqs. No other bands, you will mess up your radio, it is only made for these freqs. The mod is certified by Yaesu as a MARS/CAP mod. Warning: As all Hams know only transmit on freqs that you are licensed for.

Commercial radios are very good as well. They have excellent audio quality, they are built sturdily, strong signals, and they are cheap. The only problem I have with Commercial radios are thus:
  • A lot are limited to certain "channels" or memory presets. If you want to go to 446.400 MHz and it is not programmed into you radio's channel then there is no way to get there, without hooking the radio up to a computer and programing in that frequency.
  • Many do not have display screens.
  • Because there is no display screen you must memorize which freq is in any given channel.
  • You can not change the power level without hooking the radio up to a computer and programing the power level for that frequency on a certain channel.
  • Many have an MDC or equivalent tone burst at the beginning or end of every transmission, this can get annoying, it can be turned off, but only if you hook it up to a computer.
Now of course this does not pertain to all commercial radios. I have seen some with screens, and I have seen some with a free frequency navigation, but not many. They are great if you are not going to be moving around much, and conditions are fairly stable in your area. Also if you use only a few frequencies, then they are great radios. They are heavy and solid, they can take abuse, and they are cheap!

Homebrew radios are another world. You can customize, program, and make them the way you want to. They tend to be larger, and more simple than Amateur radios, and Commercial radios. They are made by the Ham so they are what you want them to be, but you have to have a lot of technical experience, and you must own a lot of equipment, some of it fairly expensive.

In the end it all depends on the Ham who is looking for the radio. They are all great radios, it just depends upon your tastes.



  1. Hi there, I have a Yaesu VX-6R and when I press the band button it will not move any more than 144, 220 and 440, no matter how many times that I press ? Can you help , programong maybe ?
    William Jerome VE2BUU

  2. After performing the reset on a VX5-R (pressing [VFO] + [MR] + [4] + [PWR], the radio only receives and transmits in the 6M, 2M and 79cm hambands, try this to restore full coverage:
    Press [BAND] + [HM/RV] + [TX PO} and [PWR] simultaneously.

    I had to do this to restore all 11 bands and enable out of band Transmit after performing the VX-5R expanded frequency mod.

  3. hi, i don't know much about radios but i'd like to know if Yaesu VX-6R can comunicate with midland GXT1050VP4? thanks