2020 Latest News on the Icom 705 Preview Event – Be Active with SOTA, POTA and HOTA

The “Be Active” ham radio portable machine “IC-705” that covers the HF to 450MHz band in all modes including DV (D-STAR digital voice) exhibited by Icom at this year’s “Ham Fair 2019”. Recent news is that retail price was 124,800 yen ($1150 USD) and the scheduled launch date was announced for March 16, 2020. Icom expects to sell 10,000 units world wide on initial release. It is expected to sell for 100,000 yen ($925 USD) discounted by the Akihabara Ham shops. Icom held a pre-viewing event for IC-705 in Nihonbashi, Osaka on Saturday, December 21 and in Akihabara, Tokyo on Sunday, December 22, 2019

This is what we learned from the two events:

The standard accessories of the IC-705 do not include the VHF/UHF whip antenna, antenna conversion connector, and battery charging AC adapter. In addition, the announcement revealed that a tripod screw hole is provided on the bottom of the IC-705, and that the micro USB terminal has two COM ports. More comments below the product overview:

The IC-705 uses the RF direct sampling method, which is highly evaluated by the IC-7300 / IC-9700. A variety of functions including a real-time spectrum scope and waterfall display, which boast the highest speed and resolution, are realized in a lightweight 1kg (including the attached lithium-ion battery BP-272) and compact body. In addition, a large 4.3-inch color display that supports touch operations allows you to intuitively operate various functions.

In addition, a maximum output of 5W is achieved with the included battery (BP-272) and a maximum output of 10W with an external power supply (at 13.8V). In addition to supporting connection using WLAN / Bluetooth wireless technology, it is also equipped with a GPS antenna, micro USB connector, and microSD card slot. Of course, it supports DV (digital voice) mode of digital communication D-STAR for amateur radio recommended by JARL (Japan Amateur Radio Federation). Fully equipped with D-STAR functions including terminal mode / access point mode.

A multi-bag backpack LC-192 (optional), ideal for movement and field operation, is also available.

<Main features>

  • Covers HF + 50MHz + 144MHz + 450MHz in all
    modes. From HF to 50/144 / 450MHz, you can enjoy various bands in DV mode of D-STAR in addition to SSB, CW, RTTY, AM, FM.In addition, reception covers continuously from 30kHz to 144MHz band.You can enjoy receiving FM broadcasts and air bands.
  • Adopt RF direct sampling method Adopts RF direct sampling method that
    directly converts RF signals into digital signals and processes the signals with FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array).In the process of analog signal processing, there is no non-linear distortion that occurs in mixers, achieving extremely excellent phase noise characteristics and realizing a real-time spectrum scope and waterfall that boasts high speed and high resolution for the first time in its class. (Down conversion IF sampling method for 25MHz or more)
  • Equipped with a real-time spectrum scope and waterfall
    The performance and functions of the highly acclaimed IC-7300 and IC-9700 scopes are inherited as they are.Visually grasp band conditions, check available frequencies, and enable advanced operations beyond conventional field operations.
  • Equipped with a large color display for touch operation A large color display of the
    same size <4.3 inches> as the IC-7300 and IC-9700 is adopted. Various items can be set intuitively by touch operation. The visibility and operability in the field are dramatically improved.
  • Lightweight & compact The
    performance and functions approaching thebodyfixing machine are stored in a compact size of about 20cm in width, 8.35cm in height and 8.2cm in depth. Weight is about 1kg (including rechargeable battery BP-272, excluding antenna). We realize size and lightness that we can hold in one hand.
  • Lithium-ion battery (BP-272) and external power supply (13.8V)
    can be used. Lithium-ion battery BP-272 (supplied) can beused withhandy transceiver ID-51 and ID-31 series. Of course, it supports external power supply (13.8V).
  • A maximum output of 5W with the attached battery and a maximum output of 10W with
    an external power supply (at 138V) A maximum output of 10W (at an external power supply of 13.8V) despite being a portable machine. When using the attached lithium ion battery BP-272, operation with a maximum output of 5W is possible. It supports QRP (0.5W) as well as QRP (5W).
  • Supports connection using
    WLAN / Bluetooth wireless technologySupports connection usingWLAN / Bluetooth wireless technology. It can be used with a smartphone, remote control, and the optional VS-3 headset with Bluetooth technology.
  • Equipped with GPS antenna and GPS logger Equipped with
    high-performance GPS antenna.With D-STAR DV mode, you can send and receive location information while talking. This high-performance GPS realizes various functions such as a GPS log function and an automatic repeater list-up function. It is also possible to record the position of your own station in the communication recording file and to correct the time of the internal clock.
  • Equipped
    with amicroSD card slotRecord communication data, transmit audio, RTTY decode log, capture image of display screen, various settings of transceiver, save GPS and other data, as well as use for firmware upgrade and various programming Equipped with a microSD card slot that can be used.
  • D-STAR function is also fully equipped The
    DR function, terminal mode / access point mode, etc. are fully equipped with functions to enjoy D-STAR comfortably. In addition, you can send, receive, and view saved photos using only the IC-705 itself.
  • Equipped with micro USB terminal
    Two COM ports are provided.This makes it possible to control the rig and operate CW and RTTY simultaneously.Audio (modulation / demodulation) is also possible.
  • Speaker microphone with
    customization button included A speaker microphone withcustomization button <HM-243> is included. The speaker microphone is equipped with customization buttons that can assign frequencies, up and down, and various functions.
  • Multi-bag LC-192 is ideal for moving and field operation.
    Not only can you store the IC-705 neatly, but also the multi-bag LC-192 has a variety of functions, such as mounting an antenna and passing a coaxial cable or microphone cable. (option).It is designed to operate with the IC-705 in the bag.

<Accessories> -Speaker
microphone <HM-243>
-Lithium ion battery <BP-272 / 7.4V, 2000mAh (typ.)>
-DC power cable and others

NO antenna or battery charger is included

<Option> -BC
-202 Rapid Battery Charger: 4,800 yen ($45 USD)
-BC-217S AC Adapter (USB type, for battery charging): Price TBD
-CS-705 Programming Software: Free Download
-HM-243 Speaker Microphone: Price TBD
・ LC-192 Multibag : Price unknown

・ RS-BA1version2 IP remote control software: 8,500 yen (($85 USD)
・ ST-4001A Image Trimming Software (Android version): Free download
・ ST-4001W Image Trimming Software (Windows version): Free download
·   VS-3 Bluetooth headset: 9,800 yen ($98 USD)

  • A BNC Antenna connector was used for size restrictions and weight reduction
  • A dedicated antenna tuner is in the works basd on the interst by customer feedback and surbeys but will not be released in March 2020
  • SWR meter is an SWR readout only (No bandsweeps)
  • A larger capacity battery beyond the BP-272 is being investigated based on customer feedback”. Why did you change the antenna connector to BNC type?
  • Design is based on the KX3 and FT818 with a focus on operability
  • Weight is 1KG due to aluminum diecast casing
  • It is a direct sampling design up to 24Mhz then down conversion above that.
  • Icom 705 is still undergoing design and testing stages
  • Added D-Star to grow hobby among new hams
  • Ground Lug was added
  • Tripod socket was added to hold the radio in the backpack
  • No current drain figures provided
  • Feedback shows antenna tuner and amplifier of high interest
  • USB port can be used to charge the battery
  • Mobile brackets have been requested
  • FT-8 mode will be supported with built in USB port
  • Bluetooth will support 3rd party headsets
  • Bandscope will be like the Icom 7300/9700
  • It is not waterproof
  • Alkaline AA cells not supported
  • Radio does not have rubber feet

.More Reasons to buy the IC-705

Now I would like to give a few  reasons why I want to buy the IC-705

Mobile and Base operation will be useful at 10 watts to a mobile antenna for VHF and UHF bands on FM and D-Star

The display is ideal and the bandscope function will be handy for checking band activity

Support for 2m and 70 cm SSB will aid in contesting and SOTA operations

For QRP portable and travel operations this radio is ideal and packed with new features. This becomes a multi-purpose radio

Because I want this radio

Antenna bits from the viewing



Diamond HFV40

7 to 430 MHz band broadband antenna “RHM10” (left) and 7 to 50 MHz band rod type antenna “RHM8B” employing a BNC connector.

Diamond RHM8B: 7-50MHz

Length: 0.5m – 1.78m (Division length: 0.38m) / Weight:285g
Max. power rating:120W (SSB) / Connector:BNC-P
Type:1/4wave reduced type (HF band),1/4wave (50MHz band)

Comet Comet Co., Ltd. is exhibiting a 1.8 to 1.9MHz band extension coil for 3.5 to 50MHz whip antenna “HFJ-350M” prototype with carry case

■3-50MHz 9 band rod element & tap antenna

  • Jacket lead-style frequency tap change
    ●3.5MHz coil attachment
    ●Ten steps of rods for this type of antenna
    ●Approximately 245 g of light weight

■Transmission frequency
3.5, 7, 10, 14, 18, 21, 24, 28-29.7 & 50MHz 9 band
■Impedance 50 Ω
7-50MHz 100W (SSB)
3.5MHz 75W (SSB)
■Connector M-P
■Full length (mm)- Approximately 370-1610
■Weight (g) – Approximately 245 g (at the time of 3.5MHz expansion coil connection)
■Single model 1/4λ with counterpoise

Prototype antenna mount. I have something similar for my Molle pack but SuperAntenna makes a suitable plate as well

Will fit in the backpack or even a vest pocket and a japanese version of the walkabout Antenna we have for our FT-817

Prototype carry case for the Comet  tapped antenna

Diamond Screwdriver antenna mounted on the side using the custom plate

One hand radio

This HFJ-350M antenna seems very interesting

The Diamond HFV40 has been around for some time

A close up of the HFJ antenna

A plastic plate to hold the radio in using the tripod mount on the bottom

Ground lug looks very useful

Get the tripod out for mounting the radio in the car , on a shelf or in the backpack


90 Days away from purchase!

VA3GS Geoff Smith SK – Missing Him Already

I met Geoff about 9 years ago at the Auri]ora Jazz Fest and I was running my pizza oven as a vendor. We got to talking and I was excited to join the York Region club and I made a pile of wood fired pizzas for their volunteering at the event. Geoff was also heavily involved with the Canadian Italian school that I knew many kids that enjoyed a summer credit at the school in Italy.  I did join the club and being active in the different activities we enjoy my greatest fun was working with Geoff on radio classes. Our first class had over 40 attendees with many passing and it was really on Geoff’s excellent work. I was just a ham that carried his bag for him. Field Day, JOTA, Fox Hunts and Public Service events, Geoff was always there. I also learned a lot about his dad recently who was very active in radio in its heyday (WBZ engineer, Radio Canada Antenna in Sackville etc) and was looking forward to seeing some of his dads artifacts. I didnt know this until last year that Geoff was the driver for the CNE station in the Arts and Crafts building. I used to ride my bike for miles and miles to go there with my friends as a young teen to hang on the railing hoping to get a chance to get on the mic at the special event station. There are so many things Geoff did without fanfare and he was always so humble and really defined the word selflessness. On my trip to Italy he was quick to call me up and offer some places to go eat that he brought students to and provide tips on how the train system works. We talked about the exams I was doing on the weekend and how to structure the morse code and advanced classes going forward. These were next steps to get hams licensed and to grow this hobby. Lasrt minute travel made me miss the club meeting on Tuesday night, so it was a heavy shock to find out he passed on so suddenly. Geoff really gave a lot back to the hobby and never took much in return. I will miss him greatly.

VA3GS   Geoffrey Read Smith
5th December 2019

Smith, Geoffrey Read
Suddenly at Southlake Hospital in Newmarket on December 4th.
A celebration of life will take place at St. Andrew’s College in Aurora in the Spring.
Arrangements entrusted to Thompson Funeral Home.

From the York Region  ARC Board of Directors:
Chris Sullivan (author)
 “Passing of one of our own”

On behalf of the board of directors, I am deeply saddened to inform you of the sudden passing of Geoff Smith,
VA3GS / VE3KCE, of natural causes in early hours of this morning.
Many of our club members had the opportunity to see him at last night’s club meeting
and we are thankful he was able to spend some time in conversation with members of our club,
to which he dedicated so much of his time and energy.
 Geoff has been an active YRARC member for more than 40 years,
winning the Harvey Bell award before many of us even had our licences.
He’s been the driving and organizing force behind our very successful hamfests,
which have kept the club financially sound.
He has also manned the prize table at club meetings for the last several years,
always lent a hand at Field Day and has shared his valuable
wisdom and counsel as a member of the board for as long as we can remember.
Geoff was the club’s first chairman of the board in 1978.
 Last but not least, Geoff brought many new hams into the hobby
and into the club through his ham radio classes and mentoring of students.
His generous nature and considerable contributions to the club’s success will be sorely missed.
 Rest in peace, Geoff. 73 SK.
 YRARC Board of Directors

SOTA Activation W1/AM-381 Mt Agamenticus

This is an easy drive up to the summit type operation and is perfect for the tourist or business traveler.

This makes it a lot simpler to get an activation in the log.

I did let the Ranger know what I was planning to do and they were very pleased with the ask first approach. I used a and was anxious to try out the Xiegu G90 Radio as the built in tuner would make things easier to get going. I didn’t think I would have the room to get set up a proper linked dipole for 40m and 20m. So I focused on 20m contacts

This is also a commercial site so my handheld was getting desensed but I did manage to squeeze out a simplex contact with N1DID who was mobile. I could practically see her from the summit driving down I95.

Pretty much a simple activation with wonderful views and a great interpretation center and gift shop.

The highlight was working NM8GS which was a USA-394 Lighthouse activation from Light Ship Huron in Port Huron Michigan. Also working W0MNA in Kansas made the longest distance that day.



Good evening. This is John VE3IPS, net control station for the Toronto Baofeng Users Group Tuesday night Net.

The Toronto Baofeng Users Group Tuesday Night Net is an informal net that meets at 1930 hours every Tuesday evening. We welcome participation by all amateurs.

Before continuing, is there any emergency or priority traffic?

Please call now.

The purpose of the net is to take check ins; to inform you of TBUG activities; and to provide news

of interest to Radio Amateurs.

I will take check ins giving priority to mobiles, portables and stations checking in via EchoLink or

IRLP. When checking in, please give your call sign phonetically, your name and location, and indicate whether you have any traffic or announcements for the Net.

Are there any stations using EchoLink or IRLP wishing to check in? Please call now.

Are there any mobiles or portables wishing to check in? Please call now.

Are there any base stations wishing to check in? Please call now.

Trivia Time

Here’s tonight’s trivia question(s).

Swap Shop

Are there any items for the swap shop?

Hamfests and Social Events

The following hamfests and Social Events are upcoming:


Business News

The following items of business are of interest to the club members

New Product Announcements

The following prodcuts are of interst to club members



Are there any additional checkins or announcements before I end the Net?

That concludes this evening’s Toronto Baofeng Users Group  Tuesday Night Net. Thank you for participating. We had [number] check ins this evening. 73.

This is John VE3IPS returning the repeater to normal amateur use.

How to increase Power Output on the Icom 7300 and other Icoms

Icom engineers seem to continue to design their radios to be finicky when it comes to the ALC

The Icom 7100 and my 746 and even 756 had the same problem with lower than average power output as they do not want an aggressive ALC.

An Automatic Level Control (ALC) circuit governs the signal strength going into the power amplifier of the transmitter. It keeps the amplifier input in the designed range for linear operation without causing distortion.

Depending on the ALC circuit design and how aggressive it is driven by the microphone output level can cause distortion to result.

Try these settings and it may be best to use two tones or a recorded audio track to help adjust the ALC until the output power does not increase any further, then back off a bit.

Also use a little bit of compression

1. Start with no compression
2. While observing your ALC meter adjust the MIC gain so that you are peaking between 1/4 and 1/2 of full scale. Ideally with a normal voice the sweet spot is probably a third with occasional peaks at 3. If you use compression for me level 4 works out to be the best for contests

I suggest you also follow this for lower power use and especially if driving a high power amplifier where distortion products will be more noticeable and can cause QRM

I do need to take some notes but I am finding my Heils put out more mic audio than the stock Icom mics and thus if I do not check the ALC, I find if I am pushing hard on it and it does its job by backing off the power output to avoid distortion to occur.





Xiegu G90 Power Draw on Transmit Test

I love the G90 for its fast built in antenna tuner and 20W power output. With the lack of sunspots the availability to have some extra power is handy. Its either a 1 or 2 S unit increase depending on the receiving ends radio

Xiegu claims 8A draw which seemed a bit high compared to other radios so I benched the radio after doing the Power Pole mod to measure what reality is

I found the following @13.8 Volts using a number 12 gauge power cable to my PSU with CW

Power Output       Current Amps

5W                        2.9

10W                     3.5

15W                     4.0

20W                    4.5

I use the Bioenno batteries which has proven to be a great match especially for SSB as I can use a smaller battery and use the SSB swings to peak higher with a smaller battery

The antenna was an end fed tossed over the balcony drooping down with easy contacts into the East Coast

Tokyo Ham Fair 2020 – NEW DATE

Tokyo Ham Fair 2020 will be held on October 31st and November 1st.

The venues will be the Tokyo Big Sight West, Hall 3 and 4.

Tokyo Ham Fair, the largest amateur radio event in Japan, was first held in 1977 at Harumi Fairgrounds which was located in Harumi, Tokyo, and has been held annually ever since.

Since the 3rd fair, JARL has been holding the fair on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays late in August so that student hams can easily attend. Since then, Tokyo Ham Fair has been well known as a distinctive summer event for Japanese hams. The number of visitors was first just around 25,000. However, attendance increased to around 61,000 in 1993. In 1996, the venue was changed to Tokyo Big Sight, which is located in Ariake, Tokyo. From 1999 to 2001, the venue was Pacifico Yokohama, located in Yokohama, Kanagawa prefecture.

Fusion Simplex Frequency

Fusion Simplex Frequency


It is suggested that those who are on-the-road, set their radios to 147.525 with GM on. That way if another traveler or base station is within range you can have a conversation.

VHF Mountain Topping in the USA – SOTA

VHF Mountain Topping in the USA – SOTA

Mountaintoppers and SOTA fans enjoy getting up to a high point and look to make contacts. These contacts are typically on the national simplex channel 146.52, however SSB on 144.200 is also a fun mode.

Here are some mountains to check out:


Pack Monadnock, NH 2310 ft SOTA W1/HA-041- Line of sight towards Boston

Mount Washington, NH  6288 ft SOTA W1/HA-001

Mount Greylock, MA 3491 ft SOTA W1/MB-001

Mt. Equinox, Arlington, VT   3810 ft SOTA W1/GM-003

High Point, NJ 1800 ft W2NJ-001 – LOS intyo New York City

Spruce Knob, WV 3391 m W8V/PH-007,

Mount Mitchell, NC 6684 ft W4C/CM-001

Pacifico Mountain , CA 7500 ft W6/CT-015 LOS towards Los Angeles

Mount Pinos, CA 8800 ft W6/CC-002

Mount Palomar, CA 6100 ft  W6/CT-020

San Francisco Bay area coverage.

Mount Diablo, CA 3849 ft W6/CC-045 SOTA

SFO area and beyond I made a contact into Nevada which was 155 miles on 2m FM

Mount Ashland, OR 7500 ft W7O/CS-019

Brain Head, UT 11,315 ft W7U/SU-016

Mount Rose, NV  10,000 ft  W7N/WC-001

S Meters are Wrong? can you hear me OK?

I always understood that an S unit was a difference of 6db if you were transmitting 5 watts then 20 watts the S meter at the far end would register 1 more S unit

Now it seems that things have changed and according to  DJ0IP, Most recent Japanese transceivers are using just 3 dB per S-Unit. This makes the received signal look stronger and is this a marketing gimmick or the real world now

The standard 50uv signal denotes S9 and is used to align S meters to that standard and continues but the linearity between S units has changed

The performance of the S meter is measured in the big Radcom reviews as stated by G8ADD, and this is what they give for a random selection of recent transceivers:

FTDX101D 2.5 – 3.0 dB
IC9700 – 2.5 dB
TS890S – 3.5 dB
IC7610 – 3.0 dB
IC7300 – 3.0 dB

FT891 – 3.0 dB.



I guess my 59 over 40db signal running 20 watts to a wire in a tree has become meaningless and should now be “Can you hear me ok?”