Yaesu FTM-400XDR

The Yaesu FTM-400XDR is an excellent mobile ham radio for use in both digital and analog UHF/VHF bands, and is one of the best choices on the market for users interested in APRS. And, despite its feature-packed design, it still clocks in at a relatively affordable price.

Good

  • Simultaneous voice/data transmission – This radio uses a simultaneous V/D (Voice/Data) transmission mode that allows data and voice communication modes to be used at the same time.
  • Enhanced GPS functionality – The FTM-400XDR includes an improved GPS receiver that reduces Time-To-First-Fix (TTF) and speeds up both telemetry and navigation functions.
  • Supports both analog and digital modes – With support for three digital modes and one analog mode, this radio also automatically switches to analog mode if it experiences low signal strength in digital mode.
  • Automatic Mode Select (AMS) feature – AMS automatically switches your unit to the signal mode of the signal you’re receiving, eliminating the need to switch between modes constantly.
  • Touchscreen for ease-of-use – Combined with physical knobs and buttons, the touchscreen on this unit is responsive and easy-to-use. However, it’s a bit tougher to use in vehicles, compared to units that are only operated via physical buttons.

Bad

  • Quirky display – The viewing angle on the display washes out quickly if you’re more than 20° above the unit. There’s also no auto-dimming feature.
  • Heats up quickly – Especially during 50w transmission, heat dissipation is less-than-stellar. Though it’s fine for most users, this may be a concern in poorly-ventilated vehicles or ham shacks where the radio will be in continuous use at high transmit wattages.

Bottom line

With 50W of transmission power, excellent digital and analog UHF/VHF functionality, and advanced features like a GPS, this unit is an excellent choice both for mobile users and stationary ham shacks.

Product Specs

Frequency rangeTX 144 – 146 MHz or 144 – 148 MHz
430 – 440 MHz or 430 – 450 MHz
RX 108 – 137 MHz (Air Band)
137 – 174 MHz (144 MHz HAM)
174 – 400 MHz (GEN1)
400 – 480 MHz (430 MHz HAM)
480 – 999.99 MHz (GEN2)
Channel steps5/6.25/8.33/10/12.5/15/20/25/50/100 kHz
(8.33 kHz : only for Air band)
Emission TypeF1D, F2D, F3E, F7W
Frequency stability±2.5 ppm -4°F to +140°F (-20°C to +60°C)
Antenna impedance50 O
Supply VoltageNorminal 13.8 V DC, negative ground
Current consumption0.5 A (receive)
11 A (50 W TX, 144 MHz)
12 A (50 W TX, 430 MHz)
Operating temperature-4°F to +140°F (-20°C to +60°C)
Case sizeRadio unit: 5.5″ (W) × 1.6″ (H) × 4.9″ (D) (140 × 40 × 125 mm) w/o fan
Controller: 5.5″ (W) × 2.8″ (H) × 0.8″ (D) (140 × 72 × 20 mm)
Weight (approx.)2.64 lbs (1.2 kg) with radio unit, controller, control cable
RF power output50/20/5 W
Modulation typeF1D, F2D, F3E : Variable Reactance Modulation
F7W : 4FSK (C4FM)
Spurious emissionAt least 60 dB below
Microphone impedanceAbout 2 kO
DATA terminal input impedanceAbout 10 kO
Circuit typeDouble conversion super-heterodyne
Intermediate frequenciesA band:
1st : 47.25 MHz, 2nd :450 kHz
B band:
1st : 44.85 MHz, 2nd : 450 kHz
Receiver Sensitivity137 – 140 MHz (FM) 0.2V for 12 dB SINAD
140 – 150MHz (FM) 0.2V for 12 dB SINAD
150 – 174 MHz (FM) 0.25V for 12 dB SINAD
174 – 222 MHz (FM) 0.3V typ for 12 dB SINAD
222 – 300 MHz (FM) 0.25V typ for 12 dB SINAD
300 – 336 MHz (AM) 0.8V typ for 10 dB SINAD
336 – 420 MHz (FM) 0.25V for 12 dB SINAD
420 – 470 MHz (FM) 0.2V typ for 12 dB SINAD
470 – 520 MHz (FM) 0.2V for 12 dB SINAD
800 – 900 MHz (FM) 0.4V typ for 12 dB SINAD
900 – 999.99 MHz (FM) 0.8V typ for 12 dB SINAD
Cellular blocked (USA only)

Digital mode
140 – 150 MHz (Digital) 0.19V typ for BER 1%
420 – 470 MHz (Digital) 0.19V typ for BER 1%
Digital mode140 – 150 MHz (Digital) 0.19?V typ for BER 1%
420 – 470 MHz (Digital) 0.19?V typ for BER 1%
Squelch sensitivity0.16V (144/430 MHz)
SelectivityAM, FM 12 kHz/35 kHz (-6 dB/-60 dB)
AF output3 W (8 O, THD10%, 13.8 V) internal speaker
8 W (4 O, THD10%, 13.8 V) Optional MLS-200-M10
AF output impedance4 – 16 O
Strength of secondary radio waves4 nW and below

Expert reviews

  • In a YouTube review, Ham Radio Concepts dived into the details of this mobile transceiver from Yaesu, and called it “one of the coolest digital transceivers on the market.” He called the touch screen “marvelous” and said it has a “great graphical user interface.” Overall, he said he “loves this radio” and recommended it, particularly for those interested in APRS.
  • Ham Radio Crash Course explored the Yaesu FTM-400XDR in a review, and had good things to say about this unit. He called it “one of the best mobile radios” available, and one of his “very favorite radios to use.” He praised the user interface as extremely intuitive. However, he did note that the built-in speaker was a bit too quiet for mobile use, and recommended that buyers purchase an additional speaker, particularly if they are mounting the radio base unit under their car seat.
  • YouTuber Ham Radio Extreme has also taken a look at this unit. In his review, he called it a “very nice radio” with a “great display.” He also noted that there were “all sorts of options” for customizing the display and user interface. Overall, his impressions were positive, and he noted that the unit gives you “almost all you need in a mobile or base radio.”

User reviews

  • On DXEngineering, the Yaesu FTM-400XDR has a star rating of 4.8 out of 5 across 50 reviews. Almost everyone shared positive opinions about this radio from Yaesu, noting that it’s “fun to operate and program” and praising its “great audio” and “bright and easy to use screen.” Critical reviewers noted its lack of memory banks, and a few mentioned having difficulties hearing the built-in speaker.
  • Users on GigaParts have given this Yaesu radio an average star rating of 4.45 out of 5 across 11 reviews. Several users noted that they purchased one both for home and mobile use, due to their positive experiences with the product. Negative reviewers primarily commented on the lack of a mic connection on the remote head.
  • eHam.net reviewers have given this mobile transceiver a rating of 3.8 stars out of 5, with 85 total reviews as of publication time. Overall, users liked the advanced features of this ham radio and praised its power and quality. However, some users noted a difficult setup process when mounting the transceiver for mobile use, due to the short cables included and the lack of mic and speaker jacks built into the head of the unit.

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