Yaesu FT-891 Review: Skyrocket Your Communication Options

With this yaesu ft-891 review, you will learn about all the features this radio offers. We will give you the facts, including the good and bad aspects. We have carefully tested this radio and put it through rigorous demands, to determine the level of usability.

Having all the facts allows individuals to make an informed purchase decision. If you are a radio enthusiast, keep reading to learn all there is to know about this radio and how it works to increase your communication options, while keeping you informed.

How Does a Two-Way Radio Work?

Two-way radios involve the use of a receiver. The radio receiver receives the radio waves and interprets them. Tuners are also a part of the radio because they sort the different radio frequencies. With the tuner and receiver, users can receive messages from different frequencies.

Design of the Yaesu FT-891

This radio is black, and its dimensions are 6.1” x 2.0” x 8.6”. This unit weighs just a little over 8 pounds. It features a large LCD screen that is front and center on the radio. The rugged and compact design ensures this radio will fit just about anywhere, and it will stay looking like new.

It features a large diameter main tuning dial for ease of tuning. This radio also offers a multi-function knob. You also have the option of programming three front keys.

Features of the Yaesu FT-891

The features of the Yaesu FT-891 are what keep customers happy. This compact radio receiver is packed with powerful features that make it user-friendly, even for those who are new to operating. The following are what are considered the top features of this model.

Powerful

If you are looking for a powerful radio receiver, you need not look further than this model. The Yaesu FT-891 offers an astonishing 100-watt output. What keeps this radio performing powerfully is the transmitter’s careful circuit design. This transmitter has thermostatically-controlled inner fans and a heat-transferring chassis that keep it operating in prime conditions at all times.

High Performance

When people are looking for a two-way radio receiver, they want something that is going to perform well and consistently. The Yaesu FT-891 does just that and more. This radio ensures a high level of performance with the following.

  • This radio receiver offers triple conversion. It has a First IF Frequency of 69.450 MHz.
  • It offers a 3 kHz roofing filter.
  • The FT-891 offers ±0.5 ppm of high-frequency stability.

32-Bit IF DSP

If you have ever used a two-way radio receiver, you know there can often be interrupting background and transmission noises that cut down on your ability to decipher transmissions. With the 32-Bit IF DSP, there is effective cancellation and reduction of random noises that can cause interruptions on HF band operations. This means you hear every band much more clearly.

Ease of Operation

Yaesu has made this radio to be as user-friendly as possible. They have included a range of user-friendly features, including the following.

  • They included a large tuning dial that offers simple torque adjustment.
  • The LCD screen offers a pop-up menu that makes navigation quick and simple.
  • There is a large transmit and receive indicator.
  • There are three programmable keys on the front of the receiver.

Active Tuning Antenna System Support

This FT-891 model offers support for the ATAS-25 and ATAS-120A Active Tuning Antenna system. This is optional and is considered a plug-and-play device.

FC-50 Antenna Unit (Optional)

The FC-50 antenna unit was designed to work exclusively with the Yaesu FT-891. This microprocessor-controlled antenna unit can be purchased separately, and it includes all the necessary cables and instructions for hook up.

Yaesu FT-891

Specifications of the Yaesu FT-891

Now, we can get to the nuts and bolts of the Yaesu FT-891. Before buying, it is important to always check out the specifications, to ensure you are making the right choice for your needs. The following are the specs of the Yaesu FT-891.

  • This rig offers a frequency range of 1.8 – 54 MHz for Tx and 30 kHz – 56 MHz for Rx.
  • The channel step is 2/5/10 Hz for CW and SSB and 10/100 Hz for AM FM.
  • The frequency stability for this receiver is +/- 0.5 ppm 14 °F to + 122 °F.
  • This radio includes the following modes of emission: A1A (CW), A3E (AM), J3E (LSB, USB), F3E (FM).
  • The impedance of this receiver is 50 Ohms.
  • The voltage supply is 13.8VDC +/- 15% with a negative ground.
  • The current consumption rate for the FT-891 is Rx: 2.0 A and Tx: 23 A.
  • You can operate this receiver in the following temperature range: 14 °F to ° +122 °F.
  • The case size of this receiver is 6.1” x 2.0” x 8.6”.
  • This radio weighs approximately 4.18 lbs.
  • The output power is 100 watts for FM and 25 watts for AM.
  • This radio’s intermediate frequencies are 1st: 69.450 MHz and 2nd: 450 kHz.
  • The maximum AF output of this receiver is 2.5 W 4 ohms.
  • The audio output impedance of this receiver is 4 to 16 Ohms.
  • The sensitivity range of this radio is as follows: SSB/CW (S/N 10dB) 0.158uV (1.8 - 30 MHz), 0.125uV (50 -54 MHz).

What About the Warranty?

Before you purchase any radio, it is important to check out the warranty to ensure you know what to expect, should you have problems with operation. Many brands only offer a limited one-year warranty, but Yaesu has gone above the standard.

The FT-891 comes with a three-year warranty for parts and manufacturing. It is wise for purchasers to save their receipts, to ensure they have no issues with the warranty period.

FT-891 Microphone Setup Tips

The mic is one of the most important aspects of this receiver. Setting up the mic is not overly difficult, but some tips will make it easier. Consider the following if you need help setting up your microphone on the Yaesu FT-891.

  • With a little EQing, you will find the sound on this hand mic becomes phenomenal.
  • Before you get started with EQing, make sure to have your ALC set to the peak at ¼ and never higher than ½. If you go above ½. The FT-891 may start acting strangely.
  • At the time of this writing, you will need to adjust the ALC after EQing and make sure to watch the band changes as your levels change.
  • Many users have found they prefer Menu 11-09 TX bandwidth that is set to the stock settings of 300-2700 for DX. If you are using rag chew, set it to 200-2800. With rag chew, you will notice better clarity and a deeper base with these settings.
  • You can set the following to the recommended settings:
  • P-EQ1 Frequency 300
  • P-EQ1 Level -15
  • P-EQ1 BWTH 8
  • P-EQ2 Frequency 1300
  • P-EQ2 Level 8
  • P-EQ2 BWTH 8
  • P-EQ3 Frequency 2300
  • P-EQ3 Level 10
  • P-EQ3 BWTH 8

The above settings should provide some guidance to help new users get started on setting up their mic. As always, please refer to the owner’s manual and online videos to ensure you are programming the mic to your standards and needs.

What Comes in the Box?

Everyone wants to know what comes in the box whenever they purchase a new item, especially if it is an electronic device. Below, you will find information on what you can expect to find in the Yaesu FT-891 box.

  • The transceiver
  • The handheld microphone
  • The power cable
  • Mounting bracket
  • User manual
  • DC power cable with fuse
  • Spare 25-A fuse
  • Quick Start manual
  • Warranty card (Make sure to fill this out!)

What About Accessories?

Some accessories are available from Yaesu, and they are sold separately. Although these are not necessary for using the FT-891 out of the box, they do improve its usability.

  • As mentioned before, there is the option of adding the ATAS-120A, which is an Active-Tuning Antenna.
  • You can also purchase the ATAS-25, which is a manually-tuned antenna.
  • ATBK-100 is a balcony mount counterpoise kit. The base mount is required for use with this kit.
  • The FC-40 Antenna Tuner is for long cable antennas.
  • The YH-77STA is a lightweight stereo headset for use with the FT-891.
  • Yaesu also offers a range of desktop and reference microphones, including the M-1, M-100, and the MD-200A8X.
  • They also offer hand microphones, including the MH-31A8J and the MH-36E8J.
  • Yaesu also offers an FH-2 Remote Control Keypad.

Pros & Cons of the Yaesu FT-891

Knowing the pros and cons of an item will help you to better understand what to expect from this transceiver so you can make the best purchase decision. The following are the pros and cons we found to be true for the Yaesu FT-891.

Pros:

  • The price is extremely affordable and will work within most budgets.
  • With the 32-bit DSP, you will find this unit finds signals much better than many rigs that cost more.
  • The design is lightweight and more compact than many models.
  • This rig offers menu items you would normally only find on more expensive units, including wide Hz range and low/high cut RX bandwidth filter.
  • This rig offers a cooling system that keeps the power output high at all times.
  • The large LCD display makes it easy for users to see the menu options.
  • This transceiver remains silent while it is scanning.
  • You can save and play your CQ calls with five memory options.
  • This rig works with the ATAS system.
  • The keypad buttons are backlit for easier operation in low light conditions.
  • Yaesu offers an unheard-of three-year warranty on this rig.
  • There is a USB cable for PC connectivity.

Cons:

  • This rig lacks VHF and UHF functions.

Do You Need a License to Operate the Yaesu FT-891?

Because the Yaesu FT-891 is an HF radio, you will need to be licensed to use it. To receive a technician license, you will need to pass a 36-question test. Most people will only need a general use license, which allows them to use most of the high-frequency bands that are available.

How to Care for Your Yaesu FT-891

Proper care is essential for ensuring your Yaesu FT-891 operates safely and effectively. It is important to operate this rig in compliance with all state and federal laws. It is also integral you read the owner’s manual and ensure you are not using this unit in any way that would void your warranty.

Most people prefer to keep their rig in a case when not in use. This keeps dust and debris out, so the unit stays clean. If it does become dusty, a can of compressed air is the best tool for cleaning. You can also wipe off fingerprints from the display using a soft damp cloth.

FAQs

Our readers often write us with questions they may have about a particular product we have featured. We love answering as many of these as we possibly can. With our yaesu ft 891 review, we are including the following questions we have received from our readers like you.

  • Does the Yaesu FT-891 include a tuner?

There is no built-in tuner for this rig. Including one would have increased the size of the casing, making it much less compact. When using this rig portably, you can use an LDG auto tuner. When using it as a mobile rig, you can use resonant antennae.

  • Can you change the color of the LCD display?

While some Yaesu models allow for color changes, this model does not. You can only increase or decrease the brightness, but the display is easy to see in all light levels.

  • Can you access aircraft bands with this rig?

Unfortunately, you cannot access aircraft bands with the Yaesu ft 891. The highest the frequency will go is 56 MHz, and aircraft frequencies start at 118 MHz.

Final Thoughts

The Yaesu FT-891 is packed with features you would often only find on much more expensive rigs. If you are looking for a solid mobile radio option, this model is one of the very best. With this yaesu ft-891 review, you should now be prepared to make your purchase. Enjoy your new rig!

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