12 Nov 2012

The Argonaut VI is coming soon....

Just received this reply from Stan WD0BGS at Ten-Tec regarding the progress with the Argonaut VI. It sounds like they are now very close to releasing it.
"Hi Roger,

The Argonaut VI model 539 is in beta testing as we speak.  Our first production has gone into the hands of many users to determine any slight improvements before the second production run begins next month.  Our web site will be turned on and ready to place orders when all final numbers have been established and any firmware changes have finalized.

The price of the Argo VI will be $995 and available around December/January time frame +/-  The Argo VI will not be a kit and it will be a small 1-10 watt output multi-mode QRP transceiver.  It will not contain 60 meters or 12 meters due to the design and size restrictions.  Watch our web pages in December for release notes and a page about the Argonaut VI.

Stan Brock, WD0BGS"
Now, I have not done the sums yet, but $995 does not sound like a very competitive price for a radio that misses 2 HF bands out. The Argonaut has to be a seriously good radio when put next to the Elecraft KX3, but then Ten-Tec know this only too well. They must have decided this price is right and it will sell.

The UK price tends to be close to the US price but in pounds. If importing from the USA directly we have to add Royal Mail handling charges (£8) and VAT at 20%. I gather import duty is not payable though. Against a 10 year old FT817 this looks like a lot of money.


Anonymous said...

No import duty Roger, just the 20% VAT and 8 to Royal Mail. have you seen the QST review of the KX3?

Colin M5FRA

Anonymous said...

Yup, a thousand smackers for this radio is looking rather greedy to me. I might consider it if the receiver is performance is stellar and there is a real built-in antenna tuner. If the radio is just a feature sparse little 10W pip-squeek - then it's not worth even half what they're asking for it. 73's, David

Anonymous said...

At the current exchange rate it's about 760 GBP when importing it yourself. Naturally that will be the basic radio with no optional (CW) filters added.

That's a bit steep considering what one is getting; A miniature 599 minus some features (no 12M for example).

There must be plenty of QRP enthousiasts with ample real estate, as 160M was chosen over 12M. Makes sense as an antenna for 160 is much more easier to erect than one for 12... I did not detect an onboard ATU in what documentation can be found on the Internet currently, perhaps I missed it.

I might look for a 539 when they start appearing on Ebay.

My message to Ten-Tec; Cut your price in half and you'll probably have stellar sales. Right now it's simply disappointing.

Am curious to Ten-Tec's presentation when this little rig is launched. I owned Ten-Tec gear in the past (Argonaut-II and regret selling it). Currently own two Century 22's. They made fun QRP rigs in the past, but now I fear they missed the plot. Hopefully I will stand corrected :)

Marinus PA3FZS