FT920 owner comments
I also have an FT-920 that I bought for a primary rig. It's #7F030458. Today I happened on your Web site that was linked from the contesting page, and your FT-920 forum is just what I have been searching for.
My FT-920 is my second unit. The original unit had an AGC problem. Any noise burst or strong signal would charge up the AGC and desensitize the receiver. I tried to contact Yaesu and could not get through on the phone or get an answer to my fax. I brought it back to HRO in NH (after about a month) who compared it with their "demo" unit, found my unit to be defective, called Yaesu on the spot and got permission to swap it out for a brand new unit. We checked the new unit and found it worked ok, and that's what I've been using for the past couple of months.
I like the radio, and especially like the DSP controls--very convenient. I still have the TS-930sat that I'm replacing, and I've checked them closely side-by-side in tough s/n and qrm situations. The 920 does very well and is more convenient to use. The automatic notch is super. I do note that the 920 will desensitize on a strong (s9+10) signal that is within the IF filter bandpass but outside of the DSP filter. The CW filter helps this on CW. On ssb I find that I'm playing with i.f. shift, rf gain, attenuation and IPO somewhat more that I feel should be necessary in very strong signal environments. I do note that the tuning has backlash that is more noticeable than in the Kenwood radios that I have had in the past--but not enough to make it uncomfortable to use.
Keep up your fine forum--and my best wishes for continued happiness with your FT-920.
Just want to say that I have been an FT-920 user for about a year and continue to be delighted with the radio. I have a TS-930 right beside it and the 920 hears at least as well in just about every situation, and is a much more pleasant radio to use. I spend most of my operating chasing DX on both SSB and CW.
I do notice the filter needs and will plan on getting new filters soon. I like plugging the CW filter in, but do not relish the circuit board surgery needed for the ssb filter. The Yaesu CW filter is not up to my standards, having audible thruput on the opposite side of zero beat. The 930 filters are better in this regard.
You make reference to the FT-1000 and MP models as being "of course" better. I spent time at HRO going back and forth between the MP and the 920 and found little or no difference in receiver capability and the 920 much more comfortable to use. The DSP setup with large knobs is just what they should be. The MP's tiny knobs are a drag.
I did not observe both units during a contest when the filter needs are greatest. I've learned to work around the AGC pumping by using the bandpass tuning--and have always been able to get the dx in the log as long a propagation was reasonable. Then again I'm not an agressive contester. The QSK works very well on the 920--but I must admit that having a dual receiver capability would be useful. The split setup is much better for me than that in the Kenwood and for a band-hopper like me, the ability to set up the band-buttons to shuttle from the phone to cw parts of the band, or on 30m to WWV, is a super feature.
All in all, the 920 has served me well, has gotten lots of dx in the log and is fun to operate. I don't think that we have to feel less sufficient than the MP's and the 1000's. A Porche does not compete with a Benz. Interestingly enough, there seems to be many more MP's and 1000's out there than 920's, and its rare to hear one on.
Wonder if anyone else has put them side by side.
73, Dennis, W1UF