Yaesu FT-818, not a good buy for the price

With the upcoming release of the FT-818, I’m not sure why you would buy it. The 1 extra watt does not really help much and it’s $200 more for pretty much the same radio as the 817nd. I love my FT-817nd which you can get for around $600 new during sales and less if you buy used. If you’re looking for a portable HF radio, this is a good radio. However, do not expect to really make any use of the 2m and 70cm bands. The radio is too big to just carry around with you all the time as it’s a portable and not an HT. The battery life is only a couple hours even for just receive compared to days with most HTs.

While I love my FT-817nd for portable HF, I don’t even bother using it for anything above HF, as there are much better options.

So with that being said, DO NOT BUY the new FT-818 that is coming out. For less than $50 more you can get the KX2 with a much bigger battery, 10 Watts of power and a much better dynamic range. Not to mention a DSP and EQ. The FT-818 will not compare, and the extra bands on the FT-818 will not be missed. If you want all the bands of the 818 just get the 817nd for much less money, but if you really want a better radio go with the kx2 over the 818 for about the same money.

The FT-818 is nothing more than a minor refresh of the FT-817nd which still does make it a fun radio but not for $850. It should have been a direct replacement of the ft-817nd and sell at the same price point as the 817nd. Even the 817nd is starting to look expensive at $600 for what you get compared to other newer radios on the market.