I owned one of these rigs in the early 90's, after selling my 701. Both were fantastic radio's, but after putting the Collins filters in the 745, it would just about out-perform any radio on the market!
I now own an IC-746Pro, and love the radio, but the "Menu" drives me nuts! I REALLY wish that I had kept the IC-745.
After trying out my Bro-in-law's famed IC-R71, I knew that the IC-745 was the R-71 with a TX in it. So, when a friend of mine had his IC-745 up for sale, I jumped on it. This one came with the FM board. Love that big Icom S/RF meter, and still looks great with a white LED behind it now. This rig has pulled out so may tough catches whether it be HAM, utility, number, pirate, or TIS, stations. Yeah, I could hear tough catches with my Kenwood TS-2000X, but with the Icom IC-745 I could enjoyably listen to them. This has also been a great Field Day rig. Just with the stock mic and running barefoot, if you hear them, this rig works them. And the great RX sensitivity is spec'ed with the preamp OFF, unlike the specs of most of today's rigs. (That has always bugged me about today's rigs.) The RX preamp is an extra +20dB and it makes the difference. The minuses of this rig? While it doesn't sound bad, an Icom, sounds like an Icom, sounds like an Icom. You get AM RX, but no AM TX, and not many rigs around 1983 offered that anyway. This rig bottoms out power-wise to 10W. QRP 5W, or less would be nice. And yes, that Volatile RAM CPU has to be dealt with. I went with Piexx, and after getting two boards with the wrong CPU software, the 3rd board came with the JMP's wrong. That, I was able to fix and keep this classic rig rockin'. So, if you go the Piexx Boards way, put their noses to the fire and make sure you get the right software and JMP's correct. Oh!!! Another plus is you use WWV 10MHz to keep your main OSC FREQ correct with this rig in a FREQ procedure. NICE!!!!!!
If you are just getting your ticket to go onto the higher Bands, this radio should service you well until you make a decision to change....Excellant Receive and Transmit capabilities until you decide you want to go into more$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
I purchased my IC-745 used in October 1996 and ran it for 9 years before selling it after purchasing my Kenwood TS-570D. I regret ever having sold it. It has an excellent receiver (every bit as good as my Kenwood TS-570D).My IC-745 had the pancake power supply built in and I later bought an Icom PS-55 external power supply to run it from when the filter caps went bad in the pancake supply=AC Hum. Also after owning it for about 3 years I had to send it off for replacement of the RAM board and 4 trimmer caps in the PLL unit. This is a design flaw in the IC-735, IC-745, and the IC-751A. I wonder what the Icom engineers were thinking when they decided to put the 20 amp pancake power supply in the bottom of the rig considering that heat rises. The constant repeated heating and cooling of the PLL unit resulted in the trimmer capacitors loosening up over time and when they became loose the PLL unlocked.In my opinion this could have been avoided if the power supply had been put in the top of the rig so that it didn't heat and cool every PC board in the rig over & over. I paid around $225.00 for the rig repair to Clif Hollister at Avvid.com and when I got it back it worked like new and still was when I sold it on Ebay in 2007.