Unfortunately I was unable to attend the Dayton Hamvention this year. It was on my list of things to try to accomplish for 2012, but since I’m heading out west to Pacificon in October, I needed to save my pennies for that adventure. The Dayton Hamvention will be moved to my “things to accomplish list” for 2013.
As you may know from my recent blogging, I do own the brand new Elecraft KX3. I described this little rig in a recent podcast as “ultra-lite, ultra-portable, ultra-awesome” and the KX3 certainly lives up to all of these fine attributes. While I’ve owned my Yaesu FT-817 for about 4 years, I really love the larger display of the KX3 and of course all the updated features certainly don’t hurt either.
The Yaesu FT-817 was first released in 2001 and an updated FT-817ND model was made available in 2004. The 817 is based on the main circuit board design of its bigger and more powerful brothers, the FT-857 and FT-897.
As I stated, I purchased my 817 back in the 2008 timeframe and used it for portable operations and carried it along with me on hiking and backpacking trips. I became hooked on SOTA or Summits On The Air in the fall of 2011 and this became my main radio for that purpose.
While I’m perfectly happy with my KX3 and have already used it on one SOTA adventure, I was (like many) thinking, hoping, expecting, anticipating Yaesu to unveil it’s new QRP portable offering at the 2012 Dayton Hamvention. However, the Dayton Hamvention is over and there was no announcement or news of any kind from Yaesu regarding their future QRP/Portable offering. I’m wondering if the boat has sailed and left Yaesu high and dry?
With Elecraft announcing the KX3 at the 2011 Dayton Hamvention and opening the KX3 up for orders in late December 2011 and beginning to ship orders in the Spring of 2012, the 2012 Dayton Hamvention would be the perfect place to announce a new QRP offering from Yaesu. Well…that is if a new offering was planned.
Of course, Yaesu is big enough and perhaps powerful enough not to necessarily need to leverage an event like the Dayton Hamvention to announce a new QRP rig. Also, there is absolutely nothing wrong with the FT-817. While it may be over 10 years old, the old dinosaur is still kicking and screaming and loved in the QRP community. As I stated I do own one and I plan to keep it….for now!
So why do I even bring this up? Well I do have an interest in QRP operations and an updated offering from Yaesu would be great news for the hobby. However, I don’t view this as doom and gloom. I figure Yaesu will update their aging line of 817’s, 857’s and 897’s when they feel the time is right. However, I just wonder if that time is NOW!
Until next time…
73 de KDØBIK