Welcome to our Yaesu FT-991A Page
the FT-991A and First Impressions
started RV'ing more often we'd noticed a change in our operating
habits where we found ourselves attaching our KXPA100 amplifier to the
FT-817ND or KX3 on a pretty regular basis mostly either due to bad
band conditions or less than optimal locations such as in a valley in
the mountains. The
amplifier coupled with the laptop
and the SignaLink USB for digital operation also found the
kitchen table in the RV or the picnic table outside covered with
equipment rather than the usual things found there like food…
situation wasn't the end of the world and really didn't bother us but
it was part of the consideration that contributed to us looking at
portable rigs for use when we're RV'ing.
Another part of the consideration had to do with our KX3 not
having a 2m option installed with no 70cm option available and the
FT-817ND not being able to receive the NOAA weather band.
consideration was the
desire for a real time band scope and water fall display.
We looked at adding the 2m module and the PAN adapter to our
KX3 but discovered to do so would run in excess of $750 which as it
turns out is half the cost of a new portable rig.
looked at Icom since we're quite fond of the IC-7600 we're currently
running as home base station.
The IC-7300 was tempting but it doesn't cover 2m/70cm.
looked to Yaesu who has finally been stepping up in recent years with
some of the newer features like band scopes, water falls, touch
screens, etc… We pretty
quickly found ourselves drawn to the FT-991A all mode HF/6m 2m/70cm
portable transceiver. The
rig was pretty new at the time of this writing, having just been
released in September of 2016 as a replacement for the FT-991 which
lacked the real time band scope that many people wanted.
The more we read about it the more appealing it became despite
the bad reviews of it predecessor.
closer to making the decision to buy we read the operating manual and
found the radio to be very thoughtfully laid out and simple to use,
more so than any other of the newer breed of radio we'd encountered in
recent memory. Even the
manual itself is well written.
We found ourselves impressed and for me at least I found I had
my heart set on it.
radio arrived we found it to be a little larger than expected, we were
thinking it was going to be a little closer in size to the IC-7000.
This wasn't a problem for us at all though.
The size in fact is very similar to my first HF radio back in
the day, the Yaesu FT-747GX.
It makes perfect sense since the FT-991A is newest member of
that lineage and indeed operating the FT-991A has brought back many a
found memory operating my
learned reading the manual both the physical and the soft (on screen)
controls are indeed very thoughtfully laid out and very easy navigate
which became even more evident as we started using it.
An example of this came just the other night when we went to
check into one of our favorite evening nets.
The band conditions were terrible on 75 meters, stations that
are normally 5-9 +30 were impossible to read.
In such situations one reaches for the radios various filtering
personally, I'm not very good when it comes to adjusting filters,
notches, etc… and don't usually get very good results, at least that
can be said our past rigs.
To start, most of the filters are located on a single screen of soft
keys. You tap the filter
you want to enable then use the "Multi" knob to adjust it.
thing I reached for was the DSP (DNR).
On many rigs I find the DSP setting is way too aggressive and
nearly unusable for my tastes.
The FT-991A is still pretty aggressive but not so much that I
couldn't use it at its lower values.
I was pleased. Next
I enabled the notch filter and adjusted it, then adjusted the SSB
Width, and the RF Gain. I
was already amazed that we were now pulling in most of the stations
enough to make solid copies.
To put the icing on the cake I tried the Contour control,
something new to me, and once again the signals were another step
cleaner and somehow easier on the ears.
I was honestly thrilled, we went from pulling a single person
with a +20 signal to pulling nearly everyone else out of "the weeds".
As Tammy will tell you I'm not easily impressed but the FT-991A
not only impressed me but impressed me very much.
The one aspect we didn't touch at this time was the audio out
settings such as bass and treble which are buried in the radio's setup