Here you can find a solution for a "military-like" backpack radio based on FT857D.
TIP for mobile useres:
Two male RJ11 and 3m of 6 wire telephone cable for front panel, one male and one female RJ45 and 3m of 8 wire FTP cable for microphone.
The main issue is how to find a proper receptacle for the front panel... Well, this rceptacle is right on the radio, and is fixed on 4 screws. It's part number on the service manual is RA0450600 as shown on the picture below:
You can unscrew that receptacle and used it with some PDA support to attach it on the windshield with a suction cup. I use the same solution with my FT 8900...
It is the best solution for who is interested in a permanent mobile solution. Why spend a lot of $$$ on a "mobile separation kit"???
73! de yo3hjv
Compact, full featured, modern look
Crammed into the little enclosure is an 100kHz-500MHz transceiver (receiving. Transmitting is subject to ham band limitations) with most of the modern bells and whistles that anyone could want, and which can supply 100 watts on 160-6 meters, 50 watts on 2 meters, and 20 watts on the 440 MHz band.
Is operating in the CW, AM, SSB, FM, and digital modes.
The main purpose of this radio is to be installed as a mobile rig, with removable front plate which can be mounted away from the main unit.
The single limitation of this kind of installation is the microphone and the speaker, which are connected directly to the main unit thus a second cable will be necessary.
I purchase this radio in the spring of 2006 from WIMO, a reseller located in Germany. I was, somehow, budget-orientated. My HSU (Ham Speding Units) was around 650 EUR and this radio fits very well (620EUR+shipping 36EUR) so I ordered right away!
I was very happy to have a "all band-all mode HF+VHF+UHF transceiver in one box. Furthermore, I needed a radio which could be the basis for a very portable station for field use. The FT-857 fills both requirements nicely.
The first approach to this radio was to download a pdf user manual (operationg manual) to see the features and to imagine what I can do with it. This is a habit to me in order to be already familiar with a new radio because I am a real ham and real hams do not read the manual when a radio is sitting in front!
The first thing I did when the radio arrived was to look inside...
I liked the solid aluminium frame in the central section and how the circuit boards are fitted! A solid frame is the key for a good thermal behavior and also a good backbone for a mobile or portable radio.
The FT-857 is build to last and to survive a lot of mechanical abuse.
The top circuit board contains all of the low level electronics. Although there is no space left over, nothing seems crammed into the space at all.
I saw a lot of radios from inside. Also I was a constructor of radios and other electronic things... It's like a classic painting what the Yaesu engineers manage to do in this box! Nevertheless, their work has made a design which is logical, clean, easy to repair and should be very reliable.
The bottom circuit board contains the separate HF and VHF/UHF power amplifiers, and all of the band switching components. Once again, the board looks full but very logical, with a very clean layout. The heat from the power transistors is coupled directly to the main casting, and the twin fans provide the air movement necessary to extract the heat from the unit. The fans run only when necessary, with variable speed, so the unit is quiet most of the time.
I purchase an optional original Yaesu SSB filter but on receiving it isn't what I expected! But in Tx-ing reports are better than the built-in ceramic filter, so i will keep it.
The pictur shows the two optional filters.
This radio is tiny and modular. The removable faceplate is a good thing for mobile installation and even for a crowded ham shack.
If space is principal consideration, then the FT-857D is the best all=mode all-band full-power space-saver currently available.
The price also is good! Do not expect to have performances like a Kenwood TS2000! It is a very good radio in it's price range!
Reasonable front panel – With small size comes along the necessity to cram the front panel functionality into a minimum of controls. Reading the manual is absolutely required in order to get the maximum functionality out of the FT-857. However, the controls are well-thought-out, and benefit from a couple of generations of small equipment with few controls. The function selection and the menus allow everything to be controlled, and they have obviously thought through the usability of these. After a few weeks of trying every feature, I can go directly to what I need without referring to the manuals any more. For anything this complex, that is high praise.
Receive audio is quite good – The primary limitation on receive audio is the tiny speaker in the case. For any real use, it cries out for an external speaker. I have plugged in high-quality external speakers, and the audio is as good. There is also plenty of audio power available. Driving an inefficient old acoustic suspension speaker is no problem at all. Furthermore, there is a headphone jack on the front left side of the FT-857, which makes headphone use an easy thing. They provide a switch to change the power level on the headphone jack so that if you should want to power a larger speaker from that jack, the FT-857 will drive it. This is very well thought-out.
External programming software – After I bought the radio, I also bought the ADMS-4B programming software. The programming cable I made it myself with just two bipolar transistors and some passive components. Also I like how interacts with the Ham Radio Deluxe CAT, but the credits goes to the authors of the software!
DSP - Is OK for a audio only DSP and performs well on a crowd band. Also useful with the QRM and best on static noises.
All band coverage, including the CB which is very usefull on the road! Unfotunately, I was not able to make a good installation on my new car...
Adjustable drag on Dial Knob. No more to say about! Not to many hams are aware about this feature!
I don't like
No direct frequency entry - Unless you buy the fancy external microphone, it is not possible to do direct frequency entry. I can solve this with one easy purchase, but I already know how difficult can be as I have a ICOM IC2100 with a remote mic. Not so bad, but sometime I miss this feature.
No built-in tuner – I solved this with an external LDG AT-11MP and later a Z100 also from LDG (in portable operations) which matches the size of the radio, and will load up nearly anything. I read a lot of reviews for Yaesu tuners and I don't want to buy one! I also miss a OTT (One Touch Tuning) switch on the front panel! Could be useful a single switch to put a CW, 5W for external ATU.
Unlabeled back panel – There is a sticker on the bottom of the radio showing which of the many back panel connectors do what, but I miss having the labels where I can see them. I used a permanent ink pen to make my own "labels".
A connector or a hole or whatever to ground the radio direct to the chassis. I really miss this because I like to have a well grounded shack! I drive a hole through the rear aluminium solid block to connect a wire for grounding... Grrrr...
The SELECTOR knob is very poor! Is some optical switch with a high failure rate! Mine is fail to switch in the needed direction. Forward-back-forward when switching only forward or backward...
So that is it. I consider the FT-857 to be a really good deal in a ham radio transceiver, and one which is well-suited to anyone needing one which will fit into a very small space or need a second radio for field day, portable or DX-speditions. I really like my Kenwood TS-2000X "Big Rig" with all of the controls up-front, but the FT-857 does very well within the small space it requires.
In the spring of 2007 I sold the radio to purchase a Kenwood TS2000X. After the radio "travelled" from ham to ham, I bought it back in order to go in Elba Island, portable. So, Is here to stay... or to go portable again!
73! de YO3HJV
Here is the specifications from Universal Radio.com:
Frequency Range: Receive:
|0.1-56, 76-108, 118-164 and 420-470 MHz|
|160 - 6 Meters including 60 Meters|
|70 Centimeters (Amateur bands only)|
|5167.5 kHz: Alaska Emergency Frequency|
|(U.S.A. version only)|
|A1 (CW), A3 (AM), A3J (LSB/USB),|
|F1 (9600 bps Packet), F2 (1200 bps Packet), F3 (FM)|
Synthesizer Steps (Min.):
|10 Hz (CW/SSB), 100 Hz (AM),|
|100 Hz (FM), 100 Hz (WFM)|
|50 Ohm, Unbalanced|
Operating Temp. Range:
|-10 °C to +60 °C (14 F to 140 F)|
|Better than ±4 ppm (-10 °C to +50 °C)|
|DC 13.8V ±10 %, Negative Ground|
|Receive (Squelched) : 0.55A,|
|Receive (Max. Audio) : 1A|
|Transmit : 22A (@ 100W RF output)|
|6.1" (W) x 2.0" (H) x 9.2" (D) (155 x 52 x 233 mm)|
|4.6 lb. (2.1 kg.)|
|160 - 6m : 100 Watts (25 Watts AM carrier)|
|2m : 50 Watts (12.5 Watts AM carrier)|
|70cm : 20 Watts (5 Watts AM carrier)|
Modulation Types : SSB:
|Early Stage (Low Level)|
FM Maximum Deviation:
|±5 kHz (±2.5 kHz on FM-N)|
Spurious Radiation : Harmonics:
|At least 50 dB down (1.8 - 29.7 MHz)|
At least 60 dB down (50/144/430 MHz)
|At least 50 dB down (1.8 - 29.7 MHz)|
|At least 60 dB down (50/144/430 MHz)|
|At least 40 dB|
Opp. Sideband Suppression:
|At least 50 dB|
SSB Frequency Response:
|400 Hz - 2600 Hz (-6 dB)|
|200 - 10 k Ohm (Supplied microphone: 2 k Ohm)|
100 kHz - 1.8 MHz (IPO off):
|- uV||32 uV||-|
1.8 - 28 MHz:
|0.25 uV||2 uV||-|
28 - 30 MHz:
|0.2 uV||2 uV||0.50 uV|
50 - 54 MHz:
|0.125 uV||1 uV||0.2 uV|
|0.125 uV||-||0.2 uV|
|SSB/CW/AM-N figures are for 10 dB S/N, 12 dB SINAD on FM|
|Squelch Sensitivity :||SSB/CW/AM||FM|
|1.8 - 28 MHz :||2.5 uV||-|
|28 - 30 MHz :||2.5 uV||0.32 uV|
|50 - 54 MHz :||1 uV||0.16 uV|
|144/430 MHz :||0.5 uV||0.16 uV|
|Intermediate Frequencies :||0|
|1st IF :||68.33 MHz (SSB/CW/FM/AM)|
|0||10.7 MHz (W-FM)|
|2nd IF :||455 kHz|
|Image Rejection :||Better than 70 dB (1.8 - 30 MHz, 50 - 54 MHz)|
|00||Better than 60 dB (144 - 148 MHz, 430 - 450 MHz)|
|IF Rejection :||Better than 60 dB|
|Selectivity (-6 / -60 dB) :||0|
|SSB/CW :||2.2 kHz/4.5 kHz|
|CW :||500 Hz/2.0 kHz (Optional YF-122C installed)|
|CW-N :||300 Hz/1.0 kHz (OptionalYF-122CN installed)|
|AM :||6 kHz/20 kHz|
|FM :||15 kHz /30 kHz (-6 / -50 dB)|
|Audio Output :||2.5 W into 4 Ohm @ 10% THD|
|Audio Output Impedance :||4 Ohm - 16 Ohm|