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Yaesu FT-1500M

FT-1500M permalink:
The Yaesu FT-1500M was my first radio I bought. I bought a new one and I love(d) it. Since it's "only" VHF I bought a Yaesu FT-897 and due to bodet reasons I sold my FT-1500M. Since it's out of production, it's quite rare to find. After ten years (anno 2016) I managed to buy a second hand one and I very happy with it!

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The FT-1500M is a VHF (2 m) radio built like a tank. It's made of two die cast aluminium pieces and the electronics is sandwiched between them. It has the basic "moden" functionality you "need" these days like CTCSS en-/decoding, DTMF e-/decoding, 130 alphanumeric memories, backlit display and a packet connector at the back of the radio. Altough it has the modern functionality, it's very easy to operate and "simple". The FT-1500M should be seen as a basic simple radio.

passively colled and power handling
I like that it's passively cooled. No annoying fan noise and gathering of dust. The radio can ouput 50 Watts. Althoug it can handle 50 Watts, this doesn't mean it's built to handle this much of power (heat dissipation) for a long time. If you you need a radio for (nearly) continous operation or long high power transmissions, this is not the radio for you. A fan cooled radio woul be wise in this case. The FT-1500M performs well for mobile/repeater operation in the mid power range. It can handle 50 Watts of high power operation, but remind that transmission time should be reduced to precent access heat generation.

memory operation
It's possible to program the radio manually.
six characters

out of band mod
It's possible to extend the transmitting frequenty to 137...174 MHz. This could be done by changing

- 5, 10 ,25 or 50 Watts selectable rf power output
- 137...174 MHz receiver operation
- 50 tone CTCSS en-/decoding (settings can be stored per chanel)
- CTCSS tone scan feature for determining the received CTCSS code
- mini din (DB9) port for (1200/9600 baud) modem operation (APRS/D-STAR/...)
- external 3,5mm audio out/speaker connection
- standard DTMF microphone
- 130 "regular" alphanumeric programmable memory channels (including settings like power)
- 9 pairs of band edge memory channels (for scanning between two set frequencies)
- "home" channel button for direct access to the programmed favourite chanel
- 10-channel NOAA Weather Band Memory Bank (no weather broadcasts available in Europe)
- Supply voltage display at startup
- TOT; Transmission Time Out Timer (time selectable in menu)
- APO: Automatic Power Off (time selectable in menu)
- Automatic repeater shift (depends on region version)
- S-meter RF squelch
- Bell alert CTCSS paging
- Priority channel revert during scan

specifications (by Yaesu)
- TX frequency: 144...148 MHz / 144...146 MHz (depending on country)
- RX frequency: 137...174 MHz
- Channel Step: 5/10/12,5/15/20/25/50/100 kHz
- Frequency Stability: Better than 10 ppm (20 to +60 'C)
- Mode of Emission: F2 (FM data with subcarrier), F3/G3E (analog FM/PM)
- Antenna Impedance: 50 Ohms unbalanced
- Supply Voltage: 13,8 VDC (+/-10%) negative ground (12,42...15,18 VDC)
- RX current: < 600 mA (signal)
- RX current: <300 mA (squelched)
- TX current: 8 A @ 50 W / 6 A @ 25 W / 3 A @ 10 W / 2 A @ 5 W
-Operating Temperature Range: 20 to +60 'C
- Case Size: 127 mm wide, 35 mm high and 126 mm deep
- Weight: 990 grams
- Output Power: 5, 10, 25 or 50 Watts (selectable)
- Maximum Deviation: 5 kHz (wide) or 2.5 kHz (narrow)
- Spurious Radiation: Better than 60 dB
- Microphone Impedance: 2 k Ohms
- Receiver circuit type: Double-Conversion Superheterodyne
- Intermediate Frequencies: 21,7 MHz and 450 kHz
- Sensitivity: Better than 0,2 V (for 12 dB SINAD)
- Selectivity: 6 dB @ 12 kHz and 60 dB @ 28 kHz
- IF Rejection: Better than 70 dB
- Image Rejection: Better than 70 dB
- Maximum AF Output: 3,5 W into 4 Ohms @10% THD

service menu
It's possible to (re)align some features of the FT-1500M. These 18 alignment values like s-meter reading, rf output power and deviation can be set via the service menu. Be aware that these values are individual set per radio and therefore can not be copied to another radio. Follow the alignment procedure from the service manual to achieve the correct settings. Here are the the alignment options and values shown for my radio:

Tx Def ; 137.000
Tx Frq ; 157
Tx Power ; T1_ ; 63
Tx Power ; T1= ; 83
Tx Power ; T1-= ; 125
Tx Power ; TH ; 165
Max Dev ; T1_ ; 135
TonDev ; T1_ ; 44
TonDev ; T1= ; 42
TonDev ; T1-= ; 42
TonDev ; T1-= ; 44
Rx Def ; 137.100
RxTun ; R1_ ; 63
SQL ; HIS ; 6
SQL ; THL ; 96
SQL ; THG ; 70
S Mtr ; S1 ; 52
S Mtr ; SF ; 92

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