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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
OK, so I have been going back and forth waffling between some dual band ham radios for the JK. I think that my "must have" is a detachable face because my Jeep feels cluttered as it is and a small remote located faceplate seems like a good idea. Here are the ones I am considering:

ICOM IC-2730A

Yaesu FTM-100DR

They are very similar in price and both have detachable faces. Does anyone have experiences with these that could give me input on features, mics, build quality or anything else that could sway my decision.

Am I missing a better option? The Kenwood TM-V71A looks nice, but I am not sure about the large price difference.

Maybe a TYT TH-7800? Good deal on eBay right now.
 

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I have no experience with either of the radios you mentioned. However, I will back you up about the removable faceplate idea. In a vehicle with a small passenger compartment like our Jeeps, a removable faceplate is a godsend when it comes to mounting the radio. It will open up many, many more mounting possibilities. I run older Yaesu FT-7900R radios, and in my TJ I mounted the faceplate to the windshield frame above the sun visor. This makes it extremely easy to view at a glance, but also keeps it completely out of the way.
 

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I have the IC-2730A that I bought around 6 months ago to replace a FT-8900R. The Icom is definitely a more user friendly interface. I think performance wise they’re very similar. After using both I prefer the Icom to the Yaesu.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have the IC-2730A that I bought around 6 months ago to replace a FT-8900R. The Icom is definitely a more user friendly interface. I think performance wise they’re very similar. After using both I prefer the Icom to the Yaesu.
I have been leaning that way definitely. Thanks
 

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That’s right, unlike Yaesu, Icom nickels-and-dimes on the mounting hardware. I use the Arizona Rocky Road overhead radio mount. Have the entire unit up there + a CB radio and a bunch of other Jeep controls.
 

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I've had several Yaesu radios over the years but my current favorite in Kenwood. Rugged, easy to use. Any of the "Big 3" will be a quality radio (Yaesu, Icom, Kenwood). Pick the one you find easiest to use. I'm not an Icom guy, but many are.
 

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I have:
(2) Yaesu FTM - 100DR
(3) Yaesu FTM -400DR
(1) Kenwoid V-71A

The 400 is easiest to use if you don't use it often. The menu layout is on the screen, but not really laid out all that intuitively (none of the radios are). The 400 screen is overly bright at night and I usually turn off/the other way (even with the brightness/contrast turned down).

If making frequent changes, the 100 is easiest to use on a frequent basis without have to stare at it as long (the 400 requires a lot of visual attn) - however, it is not a true dual band.

The Yaesu mics are small and some of the buttons are hard to use one handed with larger fingers/hands. Feels a lot cheaper than the Kenwood.

The Kenwood has the best transmit/rcv performance of the 3. Once it is setup, it is my go to radio. Best audio quality for xmit/rcv as well. The mic buttons are far easier to use one handed. The 71A does not have APRS, which is not a big deal of you have another radio. The 710A has built-in APRS and is quite pleasent. The Kenwood screen /display at night is aldi far better than the FTM 100/400.

I went with mostly Yaesu radios for my wife since she doesn't use the radios as much and is easier for her to navigate. If only for me, Kenwood for Analog radios.



For convo/close simplex, I prefer the digital modes of the Yaesu as there is less interruptions and slightly more privacy. Audio is slightly better in analog mode however...

Antenna type and placement makes the biggest difference of all the radios...


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Sorry, no experience with either that Yaesu or Icom model... I currently have a Kenwood TM-V71A mounted in my JK. I have it mounted vertically on the right side of the transmission hump so am not using the detachable faceplate. But if I have to leave it at the airport or something, then I remove the faceplate just so it doesn't stand out as much. Very happy with it and my understanding is that the audio from Kenwood models tends to be a notch above the others from some of the comments on various QRZ forums. I originally bought this model because of the cross-band repeat capability but honestly have never used it.
I used to have a Yaesu FT-2800M but it ended up burning out the finals for some reason and I never got it repaired. I have an Icom V8000 in my shack which works well.
As Mr. Bills said, I don't think you'll be disappointed in any of the big 3 models.
Josh
 

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I have the Icom 706 MK IIG and the Icom 2300H in my Jeep. I installed a mounting bar across the top of the bar frame and hung the 706 face
4417545
plate and the 2300H from it. Works for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Anyone know if the IC-2703A faceplate has a metal back? Just wondering if it would work with a magnet mount. I have several of those lying around.
 

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I run a TMV-71a in my Jeep. Having the true dual mode receiver is a big plus for me.

A friend on mine runs a Yaesu FTM-400 in his Trailhawk and now has the TYT-7800 in his TJ. He has only had the Chinese radio for a bit but it seems to work decently.
 

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Anyone know if the IC-2703A faceplate has a metal back? Just wondering if it would work with a magnet mount. I have several of those lying around.
I don't know...but I have my radio faces mounted using heavy duty dual lock from 3M (similar to the HD velcro for mounting toll pass to windshield). Magnets, unless you go overkill, still have a tendency to shift (tried that route with neodymium magnets already). The dual lock also allows the face to move slightly (like a cushion) when you push on the buttons - helpful if have tried to adjust while driving on rough roads and smashed your fingers into the buttons.

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One other thing : I use cross band repeat all the time. Both Yaeso 400 and Kenwood 71A/710 require a keyboard combination press put the radio into xband. I have no evidence based reason to like one vs the other, but the Kenwood feels like a more solid radio - and I worry less about running the Kenwood hard. The fan on the Kenwood runs more, but I don't feel any more heat/see any real current consumption difference between the two.

One of 400FTM units died within within a few weeks of ownership when I was using the radio hard. I suspect it overheated, but don't know the true failure.

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