Henry VK2ZHE and I were discussing the lack of new high end dedicated VHF/UHF transceivers the other day and it seems Icom heard us (or perhaps it’s just a coincidence?). The venerable Icom IC-910H is a fantastic rig, but it’s really getting a little (okay, a lot) long in the tooth and satellite / EME operation could benefit greatly from the drastic improvements made in DSP since its release a mere 17 years ago!
Enter the glorious looking Icom IC-9700, for now just a prototype shown at the Toyko Ham Fair, following in the design footsteps of the IC-7300 / IC-7610:
Click images for full size versions.
As it’s a prototype, there’s no confirmation of final product features, cost and availability – though we can surmise it’s probably an SDR based radio. Photo indicate it’s 2m/70cm/23cm as standard and the photo above of the rear shows LAN (!), Data, USB and Remote connectors. The inclusion of a LAN port will make for some interesting remote control capabilities. As expected with a rig like this, you’ve got touchscreen operation, simultaneous two band reception, D-Star and satellite modes.
Also at the Icom booth were the following radios we can expect to see shortly:
- IC-7610 SDR HF/50MHz Transceiver (Base Station)
- IC-R8600 SDR Wideband Receiver (Base Station) with updated firmware capable of I/Q output
- IC-R30 Communications Receiver (Handheld)
- ID-31PLUS UHF Digital D-STAR Transceiver (Handheld)
All photos via Japan’s FBNews.