Elecraft KX1 vs KX3?

Started by KC3AOL, September 09, 2013, 09:10:21 am

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KC3AOL

I was thinking about eventually getting a KX3, but I found a used KX1 for $350 with the ATU, 30/80 upgrade, and paddle. So now I'm thinking of grabbing the KX1. Gil, I've seen that you have/had both radios. Can you (or anyone else with experience with both) give me an idea of the differences? What are the advantages of the KX3 that might make it worth the extra $$$?

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gil

Hello,

Well, I have a K1, but I know the KX1. Ray had both, he might tell you more.

The KX3 is no doubt a better radio, with more bands, excellent filtering, DSP, all the modes, and a large screen. I can tell you though that when I go camping, I don't (or haven't yet) brought my KX3 with me. Simply because it is much bigger than my MTR, and more expensive! If I lose the MTR, I only lose $120; though it's rarity makes it more valuable. A KX1 for $350 is a good deal, and you won't mind banging it around a bit.. What I would do is buy the KX1 and start saving for a KX3. But if you're not going to do some wild camping away from any facilities and carry your gear on your back, then go for the KX3.

Gil.

KK0G

I've never used a KX3 but I use my KX1 everyday. The KX3 obviously has many more features, capabilities, bands, higher RF power and modes but that comes at the expense of a larger, heavier package that draws more current. While the two radios share a lot of similarities, they're also quite different for different operating styles. For my purposes the KX1 is a better fit not that I would mind owning a KX3 too.
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

gil

Quotethey're also quite different for different operating styles.


That is the key phrase! "operating style."

At home, I tend to use my KX3, but use my MTR almost as often. When operating outside, I use the MTR, because it's so much easier to pack. Now, if I was to go on a very long camping or road trip with modern facilities and by car, I would bring both. I am still thinking of getting a KX1 actually, just because the MTR or K1 don't receive short wave broadcasts. 80m is also good sometimes to send traffic messages through a net, though the antenna length is a pain.

I almost never use voice modes, except for a bit of VHF lately, but it's nice to have a radio that can do it. You never know.. Especially if you don't camp alone, someone else can call for help even though they don't know Morse code..

The only problem I see with Elecraft radios is the lack of weatherproofing. One reason to leave the KX3 at home unless it is really needed. Pelican cases do help a great deal though.

Gil.

KC3AOL

Thanks guys. Looking into it some more, I think I'd rather get the TenTec Rebel. With the openness of the radio, I could potentially add capabilities that it is lacking stock. They are already talking digital modes and maybe even voice! It would be pretty easy to add a small screen and probably set up presets.

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gil

QuoteI'd rather get the TenTec Rebel.


Hum, I would consider it more of an experimentation platform. Not something I'd take out... Only two bands, and you have to open the case to switch..

Gil.