Kenwood TS-50S

Desktop Shortwave Transceiver

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The Kenwood TS-50S is a compact HF transceiver with full-sized features and power. Output is adjustable to 10, 50 or 100 watts on 160, 80, 40, 30, 20, 17, 15, 12 and 10 meters. General coverage receive is from 500 kHz to 30 MHz. Naturally it supports LSB, USB, CW AM and FM.

General characteristics

HAM bands
160m  80m  60m  40m  30m (WARC)  20m  17m (WARC)  15m  12m (WARC)  11m (CB)  10m 
Frequency stability
≤ 10 p.p.m. ≤ 0.5 p.p.m. with SO-2
Tuning steps


0.5-30 MHz
AM   FM   CW   USB   LSB  
AM (10 dB S+N/N)
0.5-1.5 MHz: 2.5 µV
1.5-1.7 MHz: 3.5 µV
1.7-30 MHz: 2.5 µV
FM (12 dB SINAD)
28-30 MHz: 0.5 µV
SSB/CW (10 dB S+N/N)
0.5-1.5 MHz: 0.25 µV
1.5-1.7 MHz: 0.35 µV
1.7-30 MHz: 0.25 µV
AM: 5 kHz (-6 dB), 40 kHz (-60 dB)
FM: 12 kHz (-6 dB), 25 kHz (-60 dB)
SSB/CW: 2.2 kHz (-6 dB), 4.8 kHz (-60 dB)
Receiver system
Double (AM/SSB/CW) / Triple (FM) conversion superheterodyne
1st: 73.045 MHz
2nd: 10.695 MHz
3rd: 455 kHz
Image rejection
70 dB
Audio output
2 Watts 8 ohms


10-160 m + WARC
AM   FM   CW   USB   LSB  
High: 100 W, Medium: 50 W, Low: 10 W




Power requirements
13.8 V DC ±15%
Current drain RX
1.45 A
20.5 A


Between 1993 and 199x in USA
Dimensions (w×h×d)
179 × 60 × 233 mm (7.05 × 2.36 × 9.17 in)
2.90 kg (6.4 lbs)
Form factor
Base Station

Other features

100 channels in 1 bank(s)
Amateur / Ham radio operators
Features + options
Dual VFO's, 100 memories, AIP, RIT, IF shift, AGC and TF-set

Manuals, diagrams and brochures

Kenwood TS-50S Service Manual submitted by RigReference
Kenwood TS-50S User Manual submitted by RigReference
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Reviews & stories

zs6djd South Africa

Kenwood TS-50S, Desktop Shortwave Transceiver

This was the first true mobile HF radio that dose all bands HF It came out in 1993 but was so good they sold it new until a few years ago ( 2009 ). This radio is not so good in the mobile it has nothing to get rid of engine noise. But use it as a base station and you can't do better. It recieves very well and pulls weak stations out of the noise' but works even better with a good noise canceling speaker. It transmits very well, it works with any mike so getting a good modulation is easy depending on your mike. Works well for DX with Astatic D104 base mike.

Written by zs6djd on Oct 12, 2011

Build quality
User friendliness
Value for money
Good condition in 2006
EUR 0.00

Good bare-bones rig! Good AM TX.

Kenwood TS-50S, Desktop Shortwave Transceiver

After having the 6M TS-60 for a number of years, and loving that rig, I didn't really need the TS-50, but wanted it to compliment the TS-60, and to have a good back-up rig. AES had one more AT-50 complimenting auto tuner for this rig, so I bought that out. The only thing that was wrong with the rig when I'd gotten it was a dead Li Memory battery. That was easy enough to replace. Also, I've opened up the rig for 60M operation, which it does well. However, the AT-50 auto tuner will not do 60M. (The auto tuner in my TS-2000X doesn't either.) So, I use a manual tuner for that band. I agree that the NB (Noise Blanker), isn't that effective. I never really did understand what that AIP feature was for on RX, but I used it like it was a -10dB attenuator. RX itself is pretty good. It's got better ears than the TS-2000 and my Icom IC-7000, and way better than the Yaesu FT-857D. AM TX on this rig is quite good, and I've received compliments on it. And that's on the stock mic. What's strange it you have to drop Mic Gain to Low for that. (Same with the TS-60.) Only gripes? TX power levels are 10W, 50W, and 100W, non-continuous. Not very effective NB. And not really great for portability since this rig draws over 1A on RX. However, this rig will work in -10deg below Zero F. One big plus is all FM features are included for 10M FM repeater work, splits and CTCSS. Not many HF rigs in the early 1990's had this. 100 Memory channels is nice as well. It's a keeper.

Written by rreh917 on Dec 28, 2016

Build quality
User friendliness
Value for money
Good condition in 2008
USD 500.00

New and second-hand prices

Estimating the value of a rig can be challenging. We collect prices paid by real hams over the years to help you estimate the value of a used Kenwood TS-50S. Just bought or sold this model? Let us know what you traded it for and help other ham operators!

Based on historic data, today's second-hand price of the Kenwood TS-50S is around:

  • USD 334.00 ~ USD 255.00
Year Historic price Condition Submitted by
2020 USD 410.00 Used / Good eBay
2017 USD 260.00 Used / Good Buzzard
2016 USD 350.00 Used / Good Minicowman
2008 USD 500.00 Used / Good rreh917

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