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10 august 2007

VX-150

I brought one of this as a second hand unit to back-up my portable radios "fleet"... As I did'n have had already more radios than my limbs... HI So, when I saw a little ad about someone trying to sell one of this nuits, I grab it...
What to say? Is small... Really small and fits very well into my hand. Also the LCD is very small. Maybe too small for googled eyes like mine's, but it provide a lot of informations. Also nice to have alpha tag for the memorised channels.
I manage to buy a MH34B4B external microphone, a 6 cell battery holder FBA25 and a SMA to BNC adapter to use the radio with a small magnet mount antenna.
The receiver is one of the most sensitive receiver on a HT (not like the GP300 but fair enough). But not with the stock antenna. Instead I use a Maldol 3 inch stubby with yellow cap for 136-152 Mhz range. Seems to be a much better antenna for this HT.
I like the 200 memories and also I feel comfortable that I can use programming software to set the channels.
The radio is known to have a problem with the PA final stage MOS-FET transistor. It faults when transmitting with the radio wired irectly to the car's battery. As I have a Diesel car, on the go I have read on a Voltmeter more than 14V. The transistor is a 2SK2974 which is rated at 7.4V.
I did a intensive internet search and found a compatibile transistor, PD 55008L-E which is available from Farnell retail distributor. I ordered one 10 days ago and yesterday I was to pick-up from the local representative. With a helping use from a good friend with steady hand, good eyes and, of course, a hot air SMD tool, I manage to repair this good radio. Now it displays on a PWR Meter about 7W on max power, 3.5W on medium power and around 1W for low power. And all on the stock battery, 7.6V/700mA FNB-64.
I was sad to "loose" it on receive only... I do not feel the urge to push the PTT but, who knows when need to?!?
Also, a known problem is the "howling" at big audio level on receiving. This is related to a mechanical contact between a IF filter and the radio's loudspeaker and the solution is well documentated on www.mods.dk.

The radio has the keyboard lighted but the inscription on the keypad tend to vanish after a long belt carrying. The same problem but worst I encountered on the TH F7 from Kenwood!
The menu is well driven, simple and very intuitive. As per a contrario, I never manage to use the IC-2100, the mobile radio from Icom just from kepad! Even with the user manual near me! Maybe something with my Yaesu commitement, though!

Here are the specs for VX-150 taken from Universal Radio:

From the Yaesu family of companies comes the new and very affordable Vertex VX-150 2 Meter handheld transceiver. This model transmits from 144 to 148 MHz with up to 5 watts in three power levels (5/2/0.5 watts). Receive is from 140 to 174 MHz. You get both CTCSS and DCS encode/decode plus tone search scanning and 7 character alphanumeric displays. The keypad is backlit. The supply voltage is 6 to 16 VDC. The VX-150 has 209 memories and 16 keys. Manufactured to Mil-Spec 810D/E. This HTs also features, one instant recall home channel, battery saver, Auto-Power Off (APO), band scanning, memory scanning, 1 MHz step tuning and bargraph S/RF Power meter. Includes the SMA flex antenna, FNB-64 NiCad Battery, NC-72B 120 VAC wall charger and belt clip. Size: 2.3 x 4.3 x 1.1 inches 12 oz (58x109x27mm 325g). Click here for specifications. Features * 209 Memories * 5 Watts RF Output * Backlit Keypad * Alpha Display * ANI Auto Number ID * PL Encode/Decode * DCS Encode/Decode * European Tone Burst * ARTS System

The radio is now back in bussines and I intend to keep it even I do not take it on trips. Is very versatile, is taking a good care about the battery pack charging them with 80 mA.

73 DE YO3HJV

5 comentarii:

Tom Brew spunea...

I have the same radio with the same problem. Would you please tell me where the bad part is located in the radio. I ordered and received a PD55008 and it is larger than any part in the radio. Please provide me any info you can. Thanks and 73's TOM K3WS

Adrian spunea...

Tom, you have to completely remove the PCB board from the main chassis (metal frame).
The final transistor is located on the left side (Front UP LCD to viewer) on the other side of the PCB, close to the PTT button.
The rear of the transistor stays on the metal frame which actually act as a cooler.

Walter Keen spunea...

You mentioned "I was sad to "loose" it on receive only.."

Did moving to the PD55008 alter this radio's ability to receive?

YO3HJV, Adrian spunea...

Nope, the transistor is on the transmitting chain. It burned out without using it to transmit! I used the radio to listen to qso and extremely rare to talk. Don't know why it fail but replacing it had no influence on the receiving.

YO3HJV, Adrian spunea...

Nope, the transistor is on the transmitting chain. It burned out without using it to transmit! I used the radio to listen to qso and extremely rare to talk. Don't know why it fail but replacing it had no influence on the receiving.

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