Marius Lubbe ZS1ML

Hello, fellow hams! Today, I want to shine a spotlight on a radio legend that still commands my shack – the one and only Icom IC-2820H. Even though it was first released in 2007 and discontinued in 2015, this classic rig is still a primary fixture in my shack, serving dutifully as my dual-band base station. Here’s why this radio continues to captivate my heart.

One of the standout aspects of the IC-2820H is its implementation of D-STAR (Digital Smart Technologies for Amateur Radio). This feature is far from being a blast from the past; Icom’s groundbreaking digital voice and data protocol still assures incredibly clear voice communications and efficient data transmission. Coupled with the IC-2820H’s ability to connect to the internet via D-STAR, I have a pathway for worldwide communication, a capability that remains relevant even against the backdrop of more modern ham radios.

The IC-2820H is more than its D-STAR functionality, though. It’s a robust rig with a wide-band receiver spanning from 118-550MHz and 810-999.99MHz (cellular blocked), covering AM/FM/WFM modes. Its power output isn’t something to scoff at either. This bad boy is a full-featured 2m/70cm mobile with power output levels of 50/50 Watts (35/35 Watts on optional 1.2 GHz band). That’s plenty of juice for my long-haul contacts and local rag-chews alike.

I particularly appreciate the dual-watch capability of my IC-2820H. The luxury of being able to monitor two different frequencies simultaneously is an operational perk that I don’t take for granted. On top of that, it boasts a suite of scan features – memory scan, full scan, select scan, mode select scan, skip scan – you name it, the IC-2820H’s got it. Plus, its GPS connectivity is still a big deal in 2023. It was forward-thinking back in its heyday, and it remains useful today.

Now, some may wonder why I still hold onto this old rig when there are newer models on the market. To that, I respond: the IC-2820H’s appeal lies in its simplicity, reliability, and sheer functionality. It’s not laden with superfluous menus or overly complicated features. Instead, it’s a straightforward, dependable workhorse that stands its ground, whether during intense emergency situations, everyday use or spirited field-day operations.

Sure, it doesn’t boast a flashy colour display like its more modern counterparts, but that’s a trade-off I’m more than willing to make. The green monochromatic screen adds a nostalgic charm, a throwback to the days when making connections was more about the joy of amateur radio than the glitz and glamour of tech.

In summary, my Icom IC-2820H isn’t just a radio relic; it’s a living testament to the adage that the latest isn’t always the greatest. After all, ham radio is about the skill of the operator, the thrill of the hunt, and the satisfaction of making connections – not just about the gear.

Here’s to my IC-2820H – proudly serving in my shack, reminding me every day why I fell in love with this hobby in the first place, and proving that it still has what it takes to stand tall amongst its more youthful counterparts.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Translate »
Scroll to Top