Yaesu FT-DX10 Review

It’s not cheap, but the Yaesu FT-DX10 is a great choice for any ham shack in need of an HF plus 6-meter VHF transceiver. This is the “little brother” of the even pricier FTDX101 series radio from Yaesu, and while it’s a bit less expensive than its big brother, it still doesn’t skimp on features or quality.

Good

  • Amazing sensitivity and receive quality – With the right antenna setup, the Yaesu FT-DX10 is a truly worldwide radio, and can make QSOs around the globe.
  • Powerful 100w transmitter – You won’t just be receiving signals from around the globe. You can make transmissions, too. The 100w transmitter in this unit is no joke, and it can put out plenty of power on both the HF and 6-meter bands.
  • Beautiful full color touchscreen – The 5-inch touchscreen is beautiful, bold, and full-color. Everything you need to know will be at your fingertips.
  • External DVI display port – The external DVI port makes it easy to use this unit with a PC, though an HDMI port may have been a better choice, since many modern laptops and desktops no longer have DVI support. That’s a small nitpick, though.
  • Simple programming – Thanks to the large screen and intuitive menus, it’s easy to program this radio, even if you don’t connect it to a computer. You can even connect a mouse to the unit to make it easier to navigate the on-screen display.

Bad

  • Fast menu timeouts – The menu times out just a few seconds after you touch a button or the screen. If you’re not quick about selecting your options, you may find yourself having to hit the same buttons repeatedly.
  • Easy to hit the wrong buttons – Speaking of buttons, the button placement around the large central knob means that it’s easy to accidentally touch buttons unintentionally. This definitely takes some getting used to.

Bottom line

The Yaesu FT-DX10 easily competes with similar models from Kenwood, such as the TS-590SG, and from ICOM, like the 7300 and 7610 models. It’s small and compact despite its amazing features, and it has stellar transmission and receiving capabilities. It does have a bit of a learning curve, but if there’s a transceiver that’s worth investing your time into, it’s this one. It’s especially great for hams who may be interested in ham radio contests.

Product Specs

Tx Frequency Range1.8MHz – 54MHz (Amateur bands only)
70MHz – 70.5MHz (UK Amateur bands only)
Rx Frequency Range30kHz – 75MHz (operating)
1.8MHz – 29.699999MHz (specified performance, Amateur bands only) 50MHz – 53.999999MHz (specified performance, Amateur bands only) 70MHz – 70.499999MHz (specified performance, UK Amateur bands only)
Emission ModesA1A (CW), A3E (AM), J3E (LSB, USB), F3E (FM),
F1B (RTTY), G1B (PSK)
Frequency Steps1/10Hz (SSB, CW), 10/100Hz (AM, FM)
Antenna Impedance50O, unbalanced (Antenna Tuner “OFF”)
HF: 16.7 – 150O, unbalanced (Antenna Tuner “ON”) 50MHz: 25 – 100O, unbalanced (Antenna Tuner “ON”)
Operating Temperature Range+32°F to +122°F (0°C to +50°C)
Frequency Stability±0.5ppm (after 1 minute @ +32°F to +122°F [0°C to +50°C])
Supply VoltageDC13.8V ± 15% (Negative Ground)
Power Consumption (approx.)Rx (no signal) 2.5A
Rx (signal present) 3A Tx (100W) 23A
Dimensions (WxHxD):10.5” x 3.6” x 10.4” (266 x 91 x 263mm)
Weight (approx.):13.0 lbs (5.9kg)
Power Output5 – 100W (5 – 25W AM carrier)
Modulation TypesJ3E (SSB): Balanced
A3E (AM): Low-Level (Early Stage) F3E (FM): Variable Reactance
Maximum FM Deviation±5.0kHz / ±2.5kHz (Narrow)
Harmonic RadiationBetter than -50dB (1.8MHz – 29.7MHz Amateur bands)
Better than -63dB (50MHz Amateur band) Better than -60dB (70MHz UK Amateur band)
SSB Carrier SuppressionAt least 60dB below peak output
Undesired Sideband SuppressionAt least 60dB below peak output
3rd-order IMD-31dB @14MHz 100W PEP
Bandwidth3kHz (LSB, USB), 500Hz (CW), 6kHz (AM), 16kHz (FM)
Audio Response (SSB)Not more than -6dB from 300 to 2700Hz
Microphone Impedance600O (200 to 10kO)
Circuit TypeDouble Superheterodyne
Intermediate Frequencies1st 9.005MHz
2nd 24kHz
Sensitivity (typ):SSB/CW (2.4kHz, 10dB S+N/N)
1.8MHz – 30MHz 0.16µV (AMP2 “ON”)
50MHz – 54MHz 0.125µV (AMP2 “ON”)
70MHz – 70.5MHz 0.16µV (AMP2 “ON”)
AM (BW: 6kHz, 10dB S+N/N, 30% modulation @400Hz)
0.5MHz – 1.8MHz 7.9µV
1.8MHz – 30MHz 2µV (AMP2 “ON”)
50MHz – 54MHz 1µV (AMP2 “ON”)
70MHz – 70.5MHz 2µV (AMP2 “ON”) FM (1kHz 3.5kHz DEV BW: 12kHz, 12dB SINAD)
28MHz – 30MHz 0.25µV (AMP2 “ON”)
50MHz – 54MHz 0.2µV (AMP2 “ON”)
70MHz – 70.5MHz 0.25µV (AMP2 “ON”)
Selectivity (typ):Mode –6dB –60dB
CW (BW=0.5kHz) 0.5kHz or better 0.75kHz or less SSB (BW=2.4kHz) 2.4kHz or better 3.6kHz or less AM (BW=6kHz) 6kHz or better 15kHz or less FM (BW=12kHz) 12kHz or better 25kHz or less
Image Rejection:70dB or better (1.8MHz – 28MHz Amateur bands)
60dB or better (50MHz Amateur band) 60dB or better (70MHz UK Amateur band)
Maximum Audio Output:2.5W into 4O with 10% THD
Audio Output Impedance:4 to 16O (4O: nominal)
Conducted Radiation:Less than 4nW

Expert reviews

  • Ham Radio Crash Course reviewed this radio and had a positive impression, saying it has a “lot of interesting features.” He liked the customizable touchscreen display, and the comprehensive user manual provided with the unit. He also found the audio quality to be great, and had good things to say about the large amount of I/O ports on the unit, including USB, DVI, and RS-232C ports, to name just a few. Overall, he thought it was particularly good for new hams who may not yet have a HF + 6-meter base station.
  • In an unboxing and review, HamRadioConcepts discussed the Yaesu FT-DX10. He liked the size and compact design, calling it a “big box contest rig in a smaller footprint,” and he also liked the affordable price compared to some competing transceivers. He also praised the receive quality and Yaesu’s digital noise reduction features, as well as the multipurpose VFO dial, which has a dual-ring design that can be customized to simplify operation.
  • In a written review from Radio Enthusiast, Don G3XTT had great things to say about the Yaesu FT-DX10. He gave it a rating of 4.8 stars, and called it an “amazing value for the money.” Some of his favorite features were the large display, excellent build quality, and user interface, although he did find the UI to be “confusing at first.”

User reviews

  • Users on DXEngineering have given the FT-DX10 a rating of 4.9 stars across 47 reviews, which is a truly impressive score. Reviewers had lots of good things to say about this transceiver, calling it “an amazing little rig,” an “outstanding receiver,” and “a pleasure to use.” Particular areas of praise included the touchscreen, the fantastic transmit and receive quality, and its large variety of features. The only criticisms were for its somewhat difficult to use controls and its complex user manual.
  • On Gigaparts, the Yaesu FT-DX10 has a rating of 5 stars over 5 reviews. Users called this transceiver a “beautiful radio” and a “good entry-level radio based on its price point.” Some of the best features noted by reviewers include the “amazing… sensitivity and noise reduction,” good “general usability” and “outstanding” receiver quality.
  • eHam.net users have given this Yaesu transceiver a rating of 4.6 stars across 55 total reviews. They mentioned that the radio is “easy to use,” has “fantastic performance,” and “is the best of the best in filters, noise reduction, [and] EQ.” Reviewers also had good things to say about the radio’s excellent display, intuitive touchscreen, and the ability to use an external mouse or stylus to improve usability. A few users had some trouble with usability and accidentally hitting buttons due to the cramped controls.

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