Ranger RCI 2995 DX

There was a time in the past when the ‘must-have’ radio in the UK was the Ham International Jumbo.  Handles on the side for carrying it and a distinctive audio and roger bleep that all knew as soon as the key was released.  Now 2008 ends and Fusion RF (www.fusionrf.co.uk) are the first to supply inside Europe the Ranger RCI 2995 DX – a massive 12 kg multimode rig housed in a box with all the inbuilt goodies that people need these days.  But not being happy with simply supplying the radio they get, Steve from Cobraworxshopz makes adjustments with his team until what is delivered now is an all singing, all dancing beast of a radio.  So, with thanks to Simon and Steve we take a look at this new monster on the market.

On the Inside

So, putting it bluntly what you have when you get this is a RCI 2970DX with an inbuilt power supply inside a huge case.  The frequency display sits on the front and can navigate itself from 28-32 MHz in normal operations and from 24-32 MHz with the addition of the export key.  There are two huge well lit meters that cover signal, swr, power and modulation and below this all the usual controls that you could expect on a base station.  Calibrate, variable power, mike gain, rf gain, channel change, clarifier, squelch and volume.  And at the end is the speaker with the normal large sized headphone socket sat.  More than this, the standard roger bleep, NB/ANL can be accessed in the same way as with the 2970DX.

Cobraworxshopz

This is where the magic begins to make the radio even better than it was from the standard configuration.  Variable power from 4-100w AM/FM is made, where as standard the radio is nearer to 50w pep and with the SSB it’s similar to 8-120w SSB variable.  The receive is tuned and also the transmitted audio has some tuning/modifying which makes the radio produce indeed a very strong but clear and not too bassy audio.  With the modifications also comes a great receive from the radio and the noise to signal ratio seems to be better than the standard one so even the smallest noise seems to come through the noise well, and not with any troubles at all.

On-Air

The radio when on air obviously makes some heat due to the specification and as we all know the 2970DX could also get very hot indeed when used for long periods.  As a help for this, Fusion import a dual fan that is screwed onto the back of the radio and connects via an RCA plug into the 12v socket that is nicely sat on the back of the radio.  Even with this connected it does not make the experience of the radio less as the fan is not so loud to interfere with the receiving of signals although be advised that the fan sound can be heard when in transmit.

Bear this in mind when you try and convince someone you’re using a President Harry II.

Pricing

These are not cheap and indeed fall almost into the same pricing range as the medium HF radios that are for sale on the market.  Delivery from the UK takes just 48 hours so there are no troubles there and the radio works incredibly well.  We need more conditions to make more tests but at the moment, in the pre-Christmas time, the radio was alive with the internet gateways here around the city and many commented on the sharp audio and great signal.

Summary

Not everyone will want one of these due to the size and the weight that it is. However, cost allowing, then it’s really a whole lot of radio inside the box. The tuning here is the issue; it is what pushes the radio from a great radio to an excellent one.  The power is there, the audio is excellent *I am testing a Maas EC2018 on this one that was reviewed here and it makes the difference on SSB with almost 132w noted on the peaks when calling on 10m.

73 de Simon
13DA007