Icom ID-52 HAM radio/scanner quick review and question

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Message posted by Joerg (Webmaster) (Member since 10/17/2000) on February 09, 2022 at 12:07:35 PST:

I recently had the opportunity to test the fairly new Icom ID-52 handheld HAM radio. Turns out it does extremely well as a scanner. Memory scanning is about 4x faster than my Icom IC-R20. Sensitivity is roughly equal to my other scanners. In the 70cm HAM band and in the 450MHz range it does better than any of my other scanners. The large display is easy to read and the audio is excellent and plenty loud. The squelch is very responsive and opens instantly on a transmission. The voice activated recorder saves audio with time and freq. stamp. I find the UI for on the fly changes easy and intuitive.

There are some limitations though. The radio only allows AM mode from 108-144 MHz and 225-375 MHz, so you lose some mil air freqs. It only allows TX in the HAM bands, not GMRS. And the radio is a bit sensitive to noise from monitors or from a running vehicle. This is not an issue when using an external antenna.

IMO the radio is well worth the $640+tax price tag. So here is my question: Is anyone familiar with the mod to expand the TX range? There are instructions online HOW to mod it, but they say nothing about the range you gain. It would also be nice to be able to mod it to allow AM in a wider range, but that may be a hardware limitation.


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