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Posted: 9/10/2013 8:07:32 AM EDT
Well I am not an old ham, shoot there are hams here licensed before I was born. I like to think I have learned and done more than most hams of my vintage partly due to the group here. So when I was told the 590 was good to go I wanted to see for myself.

My Kenwood experiences have included the TS-570 and TS-2000. The TS-590 is just the next step in the line. My uncle bought one last weekend at the ham fest. He traded in a Ts-790 that was mint with box and all to Richard at MTC. He wanted the 590 to add to his TS-2000.

Last night I went over and we unboxed it. Packaging was what you would expect however I would have thought they could have thrown in the USB cable. I did notice the power plug was different from past Kenwood radios. But other than that the back looked just about the same as the 2000.

The case is a nice color. My 2000 is the LE so it has a black case which I think looks great, the normal 2000 is a gray that is kinda a throw back to the previous Kenwoods but with the plastic rounded case of the 2000 looks kinda cheap imo. The 590 has a black face with dark gray case and looks great! The tuning knob was nice with the little knobs that stick up.

I'm not sure oh I feel about the squelch and volume knobs being on different shafts but it didn't take long to figure out. Being able to switch between green and amber is nice, but with rgb leds you would think we could get more colors.

My first qso was with a local group on 80m 3916 who said it sounded great. I jumped up to 14.313 and called cq. Wouldn't you know someone tuned up an amp on top of me. that's ok I had a couple extra watts at my disposal. I fired up the amp and made contact with an Arizona ham. We went back to 80 and played with different eq settings and nr settings.

All and all its a sweet rig. I wish I had time to play digital with it but will next time, if I don't end up with one of my own.

I haven't used the k3 which is my unicorn, but for the difference in price I think a 590 would make the normal phone ham happy happy happy
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 9:01:27 AM EDT
That looks like a very nice radio, I was very tempted to buy one before I got swayed to SDR.

(it's actually one of the Nicer looking radios I have seen)


Link Posted: 9/10/2013 11:16:35 AM EDT
The Kenwood TS-590S is an excellent radio and would certainly serve you well. I owned one for about two years prior to buying the Flex 3000 SDR.

If you were to outfit an Elecraft with the filters and features similar to the TS-590S you would be looking at about $3600 compared to the $1500 for the Kenwood.  

I am not sure that you are getting $1100 more radio with the Elecraft though.
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 12:13:37 PM EDT
Thanks for the info.  What did you think of the DSP filtering?  You mention a usb cable....does that mean they finally started using a usb instead of a seriel connection?

I love my TS-2000, pretty versitile rig for the money.  Receiver much hotter on the 590 tho.  
Local ham that has both also did a side by side comparison for me a while back, and it left me wanting one ever since.

It is a nice looking radio and seeing one in person, I was surprised how small it was. That said, I do actually like the look of the 2000.  All the old guys I've talked to think it's ugly.  Maybe its my age, but I like the curved front.  

Eventually, I'd like to get a 590 for the house and move my 2000 out to the shop, and just use the crossband repeat with my ht for the local repeater when I'm in the house or out in the yard.
Need to start saving up for one again.  Big taxidermy bill last fall, new pickup in the winter and kitchen remodel in the spring taking all my fun money.

Give us more impressions once you play with it again.
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 1:33:15 PM EDT
The usb cable is from what I understand for sound card modes. The radio still has a rs232 db9 on the back just like the 2000. I don't know if you can key from the usb or not. We head back home from vacation tomorrow morning so I may not get to play with it tonight. Some here have 590s so maybe they can be more helpful.

The receiver and dsp are amazing. His 2000 wasn't hooked up to do a side by side back and forth comparison but I think the 590 is better. Although when using the nr settings it really digitized the voices. The static was gone but they still had an r2d2 sound.

I looked at the rig pretty hard trying to tell my uncle why my k3 would be much better but it was getting pretty hard when you could add an amp with the 590 for the price of the k3.
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 1:54:52 PM EDT
Subscribed.
I've been looking at adding another base radio to be a back-up for my FT-1000. TS-590 is on the list but I really need to play with one to make an educated decision. Other choices are fTDX-3000 and maybe the king of the radios - FTDX-5000 (definitely a winner but very expensive). I spent some time at HRO in VA but their antennas were almost non-existent, all I heard was noise. It was the worst HRO store I've been to.
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 2:07:06 PM EDT
Its nice to see the radios at hro but I never tried talking on them.

590 vs flex is apples and oranges I think. 590 is conventional easy to operate stand alone, flex are powerful and super configurable but not as intuitive for some. No eham hate for flex from me, I would love to have one.

For me was price. I want a k3 bad. Every year around tax time I buy a new bicycle fast so I know a new rig out of my grasp for that year, but now I have a good road bike and mountain bike (and wife has a 2012 myka disc) so I may have an allowance this year for a new rig. To afford a k3 or flex I would need to sell my 2000.
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 3:47:32 PM EDT
I LOVE My TS-590

It's got perfect ergonomics and an wonderful receive.


I have no plans or dreams up upgrade this radio.
I'm really happy with it.



PS- the usb cable you thought they should include, is a standard USB printer cable.

I got mine at TARGET LOL

the UBS cable is all you need for rig control and digital modes, the 590 has a built-in soundcard, so you can sell your SIGNALINK or whatever.


Link Posted: 9/10/2013 6:24:07 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
The Kenwood TS-590S is an excellent radio and would certainly serve you well. I owned one for about two years prior to buying the Flex 3000 SDR.

If you were to outfit an Elecraft with the filters and features similar to the TS-590S you would be looking at about $3600 compared to the $1500 for the Kenwood.  

I am not sure that you are getting $1100 more radio with the Elecraft though.
View Quote


It depends on what you want and how you operate. If you are a SSB operator more than 50% of the time, there is absolutely no reason to buy a K3. If you CW contest, especially on 160m where the signals are crazy, I wouldn't use anything BUT the K3. And really the only options you would have to buy are the 100w PA and the 500Hz and 200Hz filters. Obviously other options will make life easier, but they add cost.

The 590 can be temperamental to set up, but when they are dialed in, they are very nice radios.
Link Posted: 9/10/2013 8:25:33 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


It depends on what you want and how you operate. If you are a SSB operator more than 50% of the time, there is absolutely no reason to buy a K3. If you CW contest, especially on 160m where the signals are crazy, I wouldn't use anything BUT the K3. And really the only options you would have to buy are the 100w PA and the 500Hz and 200Hz filters. Obviously other options will make life easier, but they add cost.

The 590 can be temperamental to set up, but when they are dialed in, they are very nice radios.
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
Quoted:
The Kenwood TS-590S is an excellent radio and would certainly serve you well. I owned one for about two years prior to buying the Flex 3000 SDR.

If you were to outfit an Elecraft with the filters and features similar to the TS-590S you would be looking at about $3600 compared to the $1500 for the Kenwood.  

I am not sure that you are getting $1100 more radio with the Elecraft though.


It depends on what you want and how you operate. If you are a SSB operator more than 50% of the time, there is absolutely no reason to buy a K3. If you CW contest, especially on 160m where the signals are crazy, I wouldn't use anything BUT the K3. And really the only options you would have to buy are the 100w PA and the 500Hz and 200Hz filters. Obviously other options will make life easier, but they add cost.

The 590 can be temperamental to set up, but when they are dialed in, they are very nice radios.


The TS-590S has both a 2.7 khz and a 500 hz roofing filter installed. Unlike the K3 it operates AM and FM with out having to purchase any optional filters.

The TS-590S also comes with a general coverage receiver and a built in automatic antenna tuner. To get a K3 with the aforementioned mentioned options you will have to spend to about $3600.00.

I worked a lot of CW with the TS-590S and in my experience, it was an excellent performer. If I could hear them, I could usually work them.

As for me, the menus and ergonomics  of the TS-590S are are less complicated than the K3.  Elecraft certainly makes a good product, but I think you get more bang for the buck with the Kenwood.

If I were buying a new rig today, I would buy another TS-590S and spend the other $1100.00 on antenna system to go along with it.  
Link Posted: 9/11/2013 3:43:28 AM EDT
kinda off topic:

I inked the deal on a TS-850 yesterday, and should "own" it by Christmas.  I'm kinda excited...

the 590 is a lot outta my league right now, but appreciate it nonetheless.

good thread

Link Posted: 9/11/2013 5:52:42 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


The TS-590S has both a 2.7 khz and a 500 hz roofing filter installed. Unlike the K3 it operates AM and FM with out having to purchase any optional filters.

The TS-590S also comes with a general coverage receiver and a built in automatic antenna tuner. To get a K3 with the aforementioned mentioned options you will have to spend to about $3600.00.

I worked a lot of CW with the TS-590S and in my experience, it was an excellent performer. If I could hear them, I could usually work them.

As for me, the menus and ergonomics  of the TS-590S are are less complicated than the K3.  Elecraft certainly makes a good product, but I think you get more bang for the buck with the Kenwood.

If I were buying a new rig today, I would buy another TS-590S and spend
the other $1100.00 on antenna system to go along with it.  
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
Quoted:
Quoted:
The Kenwood TS-590S is an excellent radio and would certainly serve you well. I owned one for about two years prior to buying the Flex 3000 SDR.

If you were to outfit an Elecraft with the filters and features similar to the TS-590S you would be looking at about $3600 compared to the $1500 for the Kenwood.  

I am not sure that you are getting $1100 more radio with the Elecraft though.


It depends on what you want and how you operate. If you are a SSB operator more than 50% of the time, there is absolutely no reason to buy a K3. If you CW contest, especially on 160m where the signals are crazy, I wouldn't use anything BUT the K3. And really the only options you would have to buy are the 100w PA and the 500Hz and 200Hz filters. Obviously other options will make life easier, but they add cost.

The 590 can be temperamental to set up, but when they are dialed in, they are very nice radios.


The TS-590S has both a 2.7 khz and a 500 hz roofing filter installed. Unlike the K3 it operates AM and FM with out having to purchase any optional filters.

The TS-590S also comes with a general coverage receiver and a built in automatic antenna tuner. To get a K3 with the aforementioned mentioned options you will have to spend to about $3600.00.

I worked a lot of CW with the TS-590S and in my experience, it was an excellent performer. If I could hear them, I could usually work them.

As for me, the menus and ergonomics  of the TS-590S are are less complicated than the K3.  Elecraft certainly makes a good product, but I think you get more bang for the buck with the Kenwood.

If I were buying a new rig today, I would buy another TS-590S and spend
the other $1100.00 on antenna system to go along with it.  


I don't want to start a pissing match, but I am not worried about working the ones I can hear with other radios. I am worried about the guy in Russia on 160m CW who is 220Hz away from the guy with a legal limit amp in New York.
Link Posted: 9/11/2013 9:36:46 AM EDT
I'm old school....i like xtal filters

When the ts-590 came  out, i wondered and the lack of optional
Narrow filters and was IF DSL enough

I had a business trip to chicago, and ran up to milwalkee AES
They let me set up the new TS-590 on the HF station and compare it
To the ft-950 and an icom

I found the IF DSP's ability to narrow the bandwidth to be outstanding

After that day, i could not get the 590 out of my mind
Saved my pennys and got one

Im really happy with it.  It can reject nearby strong signals with ease

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