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Old 22-12-2016, 13:23   #16
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Resurrecting an old thread opens eyes of everyone, including mine...

While we still do disagree on the recommendation for equipping with HF-DSC, I have mellowed my attitude about it over the past year or so....(as you can see from my response above, a year and half ago)...

And, please allow me to highlight your points, that I agree with....and add a bit of clarification of my own thoughts...
Originally Posted by btrayfors View Post
Good info and discussion. As usual, John and
others have provided excellent info.

However, I do object to two things:

1. The statements to the effect that the M700 is a good radio for "casual use" or for "occasional use". NO, NO, NO. The M700 is a good solid radio which is just as capable of voice communications as ANY OTHER MARINE RADIO, INCLUDING THE M802. True, it doesn't have DSC and it lacks a true VFO (which only one or two other marine radios have), but for net use and for communicating in fixed frequencies it's just as good as any other marine radio.
Unfortunately my use of the word "casual" might have been taken incorrectly...
Yes, the M-700 is good rig for HF Marine Voice (SSB) comms on-board...

2. The implication that a marine HF transceiver lacking DSC capability isn't worth much these days because of GMDSS, SOLAS, etc. Again, NO NO NO. Not true. Depending on where you sail, it can be very useful to participate in established marine nets (and, if you have a ham license, in the many ham nets devoted to marine users). Also, the USCG HF network and the marine operator WLO and KLB on the Gulf and West costs have excellent coverage of ALL U.S. waters and far out into the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pacific oceans. None of this requires DSC. And, by the way, they don't just listen "sometimes": they listen 24/7 on multiple HF frequencies, and also broadcast WX and traffic lists on multiple frequencies which helps to guage propagation conditions.
Yes, this is all true and I agree with it all...
And, of course the M-700 is a very useable rig for this application...
(but, I still think ignoring the advantage of HF-DSC might be doing a disservice to those trying to construct a "budget" and/or figure out "how" to have effective communications, etc..)

John and I agree on almost everything technical involving HF radio, but we disagree deeply on the imperative of DSC.
I've mellowed....
I still recommend HF-DSC. and still tout it as a useable way of signaling, and still think those ignoring it are stuck in the past ....
But, I do not think it's an imperative...

Yes, nice to have and maybe even crucial in some situations. But not having it does not render an HF Marine transceiver useless, nor does it affect ham SSB transceivers (NONE of which have DSC, by the way).

Figured I'd pass on some of my more mellowed thoughts...

Fair winds..


John, KA4WJA
s/v Annie Laurie, WDB6927
MMSI# 366933110
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Old 22-12-2016, 13:33   #17
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Hi, John...

Thanks for posting your "mellowed thoughts". My god, it seems we're almost on the same DSC page here, since I've mellowed just a bit myself :-)

And, it's probably a timely thing since affordable DSC radios are becoming scarce as hens teeth on the U.S. market these days, what with the cessation of M802 least temporarily.

There's always the Furuno FS-1503, but I really don't like that radio. Only folks who seem to like it are the fishermen in the Pacific Northwest :-)

And the used market for HF-DSC radios is a crapshoot: buyer beware!

Happy Holidays to you, and to all who follow our musings on MF/HF radios throughout the year.


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Old 22-12-2016, 13:42   #18
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

We strayed quite a ways from the original question on this thread, i.e., is the M700 any good?

By now readers will have discerned that my opinion -- and John's -- is: YES, it is a good radio.

I've had a bunch of them thru my shop over the years. They're built like a tank, have excellent audio, and make for excellent MF/HF radios aboard.

Here's one I programmed, tested, and shipped to a Canadian customer almost seven years ago. It's tuned to marine channel 12C -- 12.359kHz -- but it also does the ham bands very well.


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Old 26-11-2017, 09:23   #19
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Was wondering with the m-700. What antenna is best for use.
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Old 26-11-2017, 11:37   #20
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

I use my mizzen backstay with isolators up to a triatic stay on my main masthead. Prior to all that it runs through the matching Icom antenna tuner.
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Old 27-11-2017, 04:09   #21
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Jdoss.
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Old 27-11-2017, 05:06   #22
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Unless whatever boat i buy comes with a backstay antenna, i will use a 'rope' antenna.
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Old 27-11-2017, 06:18   #23
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Re: iCOM IC-M700 any good

Originally Posted by Jdoss73 View Post
Was wondering with the m-700. What antenna is best for use.
Jdoss--As a practical matter, there may not be a "best" as we have seen various antenna arrangements that seem to have worked well for their owners, each of whom swears by their own installation. I suspect Bill Trayfors is likely to have the most reliable experience/comparison based opinion however.

In our case we have an insulated back-stay that, with the AT-120, seems to work quite well. One of our slip neighbors uses a "rope" antenna that he hoists between his mast-head and a stern cleat when he wishes to use his radio. If you're looking at a new installation, I suspect the rope antenna may be the least costly to start with. Personally, I prefer the back-stay simply because I prefer to have the thing ready to go when I might need it. E.g. we pre-set and tune to one of the CG emergency channels so that, in an emergency, one can simply turn on the radio and yell for help.


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