The Ten-Tec 599 Eagle is a transceiver combining simplified controls and ease of operation with the excellent performance of a low first IF 160-through 6-meter ham-band architecture in a compact, mobile-friendly structure. The analog portion of the radio is double conversion with IF frequencies of 9.0015 MHz and 22.5 kHz. A third conversion to zero-frequency IF is accomplished in the DSP processor.
The Ten-Tec Eagle (599AT) has a built-in antenna tuner.
This is a classic analog radio with first IF at 9MHz using crystal filters and DSP at the 22kHz 2nd IF frequency. TenTec first used the 22kHz IF in their very nice RX320 and the DSP had seen a lot of development by the time the Eagle came out.
The circuit boards are good quality. Radio is open and will be easy to work on should it need work.
Controls are simple and straight forward. RF gain, AF gain, frequency, A=B and A swap B button makes split operation easy. Pull up the manual for details. http://www.tentec.com Schematics are there too. although the final amplifier in newer models is FET instead of BJT. The FET amp is essentially the same as the Tentec 100W amplifier.
I'm told the automatic antenna tuner (AT model) is slow but have nothing to comapare it to. It's maybe 20 to 30 seconds to tune and lets me use my 80m inverted V everywhere except 160, after trimming the open wire feed line a bit.
6m works well. I can hear plenty with the 80m inverted Vee or the homebrew turnstile and work most I can hear.
I've used the IC7300 and the Kenwood TS590SG and prefer the controls, size, and most of all audio characteristics of the Eagle. The Eagle has good bandpass filters and holds up much better than the 7300 when the band is full of strong signals. Off frequency RFI that makes the 7300 unusable doesn't phase the Eagle.
The Eagle was selling for $2000 with SSB filter and no tuner when I first started looking. When Tentec got sold they blew out the inventory with CW filter, automatic tuner, and noise blanker included for $1500. Close to $1000 off the list price. I could not resist.
I would not trade my used Eagle for a brand new 7300 or TS590 even if you kicked in $500. The Eagle is just easier to use and sounds that much better. It's AGC works very well too. If you want a panadapter, the Eagle has a 9MHz IF tap that is buffered. Use it along with a $21 softrock II lite SDR board and a decent sound card with HDSDR software and you can have dual receive and a nice big waterfall display.
No radio is perfect. The Eagle has warts. It has fans. I don't like fan noise. Pretty much all radios have fans these days but still...I'd gladly pay $50 more for a big heat sink and no fan. The radio does not have a receive antenna connector. You have to use an external relay or electronic switch if you want to listen on a different antenna then you are transmitting on.
73, -Bob ah7i/w4
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