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Old 11-01-2017, 10:06 PM
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Default Icom Ic R8600 Question before buying

Just wanted some opinions before / if I buy the 8600. First let me say I live in a strong signal environment. I have a 50,000 watt AM powerhouse less than 10 miles away. Most radios read +60. Second, I have a local FM station that is only about 2 miles away. It's also 50,000 watts, so my area is challenging to say the least.
I still have an R-8500, and have NO overload issues at all. The front end of the radio is wonderful. I have a R-75 that is the same, no overload issues. Other radios do suffer, and I need a filter or use the attenuator. I also like to DX the AM Broadcast band, so with that said.......Has anyone experienced any overload issues with powerful AM broadcast stations ? Any overload or bleed over ? Any bleed over from powerful FM transmitters?
I would like to purchase the radio, but don't want to use filters. I would think a 2.5k radio should be able to handle all strong signals......the recently discontinued 8500 did.

Any opinions ? Anybody experiencing overload issues ? Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.
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Old 11-02-2017, 1:45 PM
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I would suggest you read a couple of detailed reviews

N9EWO Review Icom IC-R8600 SDR Receiver

Adam M. Farson VA7OJ/AB4OJ

List of my User Reviews & Test Reports

Also the November QST has a review.

If the IC- R8500 is working for you then the IC- R8600 will only
be a better listening experience .

Last edited by n2pqq; 11-02-2017 at 1:49 PM..
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Old 11-02-2017, 2:57 PM
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Thanks Adam. I did read the review by N9EWO, but did not read yours. Seems like the 8600 can handle the strong signal environment, with adjustment of RF gain, or use of attenuator. The 8500 does not need any attenuation, so if performance is better on the 8600, I may make the purchase. Still need to think about it, 2.5 K lots of change. Your review is excellent, but I may wait a little longer for additional user reviews. There are many people who have different challenging environments, and would like to read a bit more about this receiver. Thank you again.
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Old 03-08-2018, 6:40 PM
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If you want a comparable HF receiver (16bit ADC, blocking dynamic range, etc..) you could look at the Elad FDM-S2 which costs 530 dollars and would save you a bundle.

FDM-S2 is like the 8600 minus the chassis, the additional VHF/UHF coverage etc..

Now if you are looking for a box independent of the computer then the 8600 is your choice.

here is a link to the technical specifications of the FDM-S2

http://sdr.eladit.com/FDM-S2%20Sampl...Rev%201.08.pdf
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Old 03-08-2018, 7:03 PM
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I now have the Icom IC-R8600, and the FDM-S2. While the FDM-S2 is a good receiver, the 8600 is vastly superior in EVERY WAY.
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Old 03-08-2018, 7:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hth999 View Post
I now have the Icom IC-R8600, and the FDM-S2. While the FDM-S2 is a good receiver, the 8600 is vastly superior in EVERY WAY.
How so? Did you do A/B tests on same antenna same signal? not sure what you mean by vastly superior. something is not adding up.


The 8600 has a 14bit ADC @ 122.88MSPS (dont know what FPGA is in use) VS the FDM-S2 which has a 16bit ADC @ 122.88MSPS and a FPGA Xilinx Spartan6 XC6LXC25 FPGA

The FDM-S2 IP3 +31 dBm @ 14 MHz, Spacing 2 kHz (1dbm better than 8600 but thats splitting hairs)
8600 is +30 dbm

The 8600 is obviously a pretty slick self contained box For the price they should have used a better ADC since the price differential is not much between the 16 VS 14bit ADC when talking about 2000+ dollar radios.

If HF is your primary interest (not VHF/UHF) The IC-7300 is a better deal, same radio minus the extra extended VHF/UHF for half the price. It is quite a bargain actually 1300 bucks you get a complete setup and you can transmit if you get your license.

Now the IC-7610 now that would make a real nice HF reciever with its dual 16bit ADCs and dual tracking preselectors.

Last edited by prc117f; 03-08-2018 at 7:44 PM..
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Old 03-08-2018, 7:52 PM
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prc117f, Your facts are wrong. The 8600 uses a Linear Tech LTC2208 16 Bit 130 MSPC ADC. I own both receivers. You would need to sit down are work the receiver to realize how superior the 8600 is.
BTW....your the guy who said the Grundig Satellit ( not Executive ) who said the radio was selling for 110.00 dollars. I responded and asked you where it was being sold at that price....you did not respond.
Looks like your looking for some kind of altercation. I won't give you the satisfaction. But I will say you are wrong about the ADC on the 8600. Adios. hth999
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Old 03-08-2018, 8:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hth999 View Post
prc117f, Your facts are wrong. The 8600 uses a Linear Tech LTC2208 16 Bit 130 MSPC ADC. I own both receivers. You would need to sit down are work the receiver to realize how superior the 8600 is.
BTW....your the guy who said the Grundig Satellit ( not Executive ) who said the radio was selling for 110.00 dollars. I responded and asked you where it was being sold at that price....you did not respond.
Looks like your looking for some kind of altercation. I won't give you the satisfaction. But I will say you are wrong about the ADC on the 8600. Adios. hth999
For 110 bucks you get them on ebay. So you have not tested the FDM-S2 VS the IC-8600 I am gathering from your response, no facts to back up your claims. (Assuming you have an FDM-S2)

I am looking at specs between the two radios and I find it hard to believe the claims " Vastly Superior" with no facts to back it up.

Now if you said its a better radio since it is self contained, can receive more bands (VHF/UHF) etc. cool factor then yeah I would agree, its a slick radio in that sense, it probably looks cool in the shack VS a desktop PC and a small box hooked up to it.

Where do you have that info. The ICOM site says 14bit. sounds like they are using the LTC2208-14

This is from the Icom site.

Direct HF signals and intermediate frequency signals, which are converted from VHF/UHF signals, are digitized in a 14-bit A/D converter and transferred to the FPGA and DSP for optimal processing. The
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Old 03-08-2018, 9:13 PM
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Original plans were to use 14 bit LTC2208-14. This 14 bit ADC is in the Icom 7300. The 8600 group on yahoo have indeed verified the 16 bit ADC. I really don't care if you believe me. You should look at the performance chart on Sherwood Engineering. Rob Sherwood has done extensive tests, and the 8600 is 2nd on the list. Go look at the Sherwood Engineering web site. As far as tests are concerned. I don't have any expensive equipment, so I leave that up to Sherwood Engineering and others, like Adam Farson, Dave Zantow. They know what they are talking about. Google their web sites, and take a look. It's an incredible radio. I have a neighbor who has a Plazma TV that causes S-9 RFI. The NB on the 8600 eliminates 80-90 % of the noise. No other radio I have owned can do this. The FM broadcast band is suitable for DX ing. Great Air Band coverage. 2 meters, 70 Centimeters, just outstanding. Great audio quality. Superb in the AM broadcast band. I can hear the AM station 600 from Jacksonville, with a readable signal during the day ! No other radio can do this ( R-75, AOR 7030, Drake R-8, and yes the FDM-S2 cannot " Hear " this signal, and recover the audio as well. Did I mention HF ? No I did not. Great for listening on the Ham Bands, just superb. My FDM-S2 is a solid radio, and I am happy to own one. However, it should not be as good as the 8600. Price alone...500 vs 2500. The 8600 should be better.
This is all I can tell you. Take a look at the reviews by the mentioned people above. If you can afford this radio, I would recommend you buy it. It's the finest radio I have owned in my 40 plus years in the hobby. I for one feel proud to own the 8600, and sits proudly in my shack. Have a nice evening. hth999 Hal
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:35 PM
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prc117f....look at a post from another member of radioreference... looks like you been bashing the 8600 with a number of members who own the 8600. Look at the specs below.....16 bit ADC. Click on the link.
( nobody is saying the FDM-S2 is a bad radio, it's a great radio for the price )

https://forums.radioreference.com/ic...m-r8600-4.html
Hello,

I took off the top cover of my IC-R8600. There is some neat engineering.

I noticed they are using a ported speaker. There is a hole next to the speaker and a black plastic enclosure on the backside of the speaker.

There is also 4 mounting posts on the speaker panel. Maybe there will be a future option board. There are two populated unused connectors on the main board. I also noticed a number of places for connectors that are not populated.

The 16 bit ADC used to digitize the RF should give excellent performance.

RX-3818E is marked on Lattice chip. RX-3818 is likely a engineering or hardware identifier for the receiver, with E for Europe?

Some of the ICs on the main board
Renesas R7S721001VC Main CPU ARM A9
Spansion FL127S1F10 Serial Flash
Micron 48LC4M16A2 4 banks of 1MBx16 SDRAM 167 MHz
Analog Devices ADSP-21488 DSP
TI TMS320C55 DSP Likely the Digital Voice CODEC as DVSI likes this chip.
Altera Cyclone IV FPGA EP4CE55F2-317N (same as IC-7300)
CY7C68013A-56 EZ-USB FX2LB USB 2.0 controller used for IQ
Lattice LCMXO256C MachXO FPGA
Linear Tech LTC2208 16 bit 130Msps ADC

2 x TI PCM2901E Stereo Audio CODEC w/USB Interface (one for each USB port)
TI PCM1681 24 bit 192Ksps 8 Channel DAC
2 x Microchip USB2513B USB 2.0 Hub (one for each USB port)
4 x SiLabs CP2102 USB 2.0 to TTL UART (two for each USB port)
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:59 PM
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On the question of how good the Icom R8600 is.... I sent mine to Rob Sherwood, who lab tests radios and publishes the test results and grades the receivers according to narrow spaced dynamic range. This test is the money shot for a receiver and its what puts a radio in the elite contest grade category vs ho-hum marginal or worse performance. Its takes a lot of engineering $$ and smarts to get high marks in narrow spaced dynamic range.

My personal R8600 ranked at number 15 out of over 140 different receivers tested, beating out many well known high performance radios. Then something interesting happened, Rob and others started getting different but consistent levels of performance from several R8600s tested. Initially Rob posted only my test data, being the lowest of the bunch, but then he posted his personal receiver because its real valid data.

Rob's personal Icom R8600 came in at number 2 out of all radios he's ever tested, beating out radios costing $20k and more. With that said its kind of ludicrous to think a little dongle receiver or similar is going to out perform an R8600 in any way shape or form. Granted its not the best receiver ever made but its easily beating out the $12K Icom R9500 and other high end expensive receivers and I think its a bargain at $2,600.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prc117f View Post
For 110 bucks you get them on ebay. So you have not tested the FDM-S2 VS the IC-8600 I am gathering from your response, no facts to back up your claims. (Assuming you have an FDM-S2)

I am looking at specs between the two radios and I find it hard to believe the claims " Vastly Superior" with no facts to back it up.

Now if you said its a better radio since it is self contained, can receive more bands (VHF/UHF) etc. cool factor then yeah I would agree, its a slick radio in that sense, it probably looks cool in the shack VS a desktop PC and a small box hooked up to it.

Where do you have that info. The ICOM site says 14bit. sounds like they are using the LTC2208-14

This is from the Icom site.

Direct HF signals and intermediate frequency signals, which are converted from VHF/UHF signals, are digitized in a 14-bit A/D converter and transferred to the FPGA and DSP for optimal processing. The
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