C4FM as one of the easiest digital operating mode to set up. Enter your callsign and you’re good to go.
All in all, the FT-3D is a nice and handy radio.
Keys and buttons
I like the arrangement of the
PTT and the knob on the top is very usable.
Easy to use T-CALL
One button below the
PTT is the
MONI/T-CALL button located, which you can
either configure as a
MONITOR button (opens both receiver at once) or as
T-CALL button, which sends out a 1750Hz tone immediately.
Opening SQL when you use T-CALL
When you configured your
MONI/T-CALL button for
T-CALL, you can open the
squelch by pressing the
SQL button (between
and then use the volume knob to reduce or increase the squelch level.
But it cannot use Voice Alert. Nonetheless a device which can send and receive APRS packets is not seen very often on portable devices. Not even the new Icom ID-52 has APRS support.
The screen is okay and you see instantly which band is active at the moment. Using the touch screen is very intuitive, although I personally prefer devices with no touch screen at all. I never had any problems with the coloring or the brightness at all, but YMMV.
The FT-3D supports 4 power levels: LOW1 (0.3W), LOW2 (1W), LOW3 (2.5W) and HIGH (5W).
This is probably the first portable radio that I bought which had a band scope. The scope itself is quite usable, it let’s you split the screen width into 19, 39 or 79 bars of details. I usually switch between 39 and 79 bars to get the best results.
Dual receive (D.RCV)
Preset receiver memory channels (P.RCVR)
BAND button between Weather broadcast (WX CH), international VHF
marine radio (INTVHF) or international shortwave broadcast (SW) channels.
For shortwave listening (only AM, no SSB), a longer antenna may not be a bad idea.
AF-DUAL receive function (A.DUAL)
This enables radio broadcast reception on the A band receiver. The radio reception is interrupted, when a signals is receiver on either A or B band receivers.
Built-in GPS receiver
GPS is a handy function, but it drains the battery. You may also use pre-defined locations for APRS and save some battery life if you are stationary.
Cross-band memory channels
The FT-3D lets you save memories that use 2m for receive but 70cm for transmit, for example. The repeater OE7XZR (Zugspitze, Tyrol) is one of them. It sends on 145.57500 MHz but receives on 432.57500 MHz.
Although the recordings are sometimes quite buggy, I really appreciate this function on newer radios. No need to pull out your smartphone to get a recording on tape.