Ten-Tec Argonaut VI

See http://www.tentec.com/argonaut-vi-qrp-1-10-watt-transceiver/

Despite missing some key bands, all reports are this is a very good QRP radio from Ten-Tec. However at $995 in the USA (similar in £ in the UK with import duty and VAT tax) it is simply too expensive to ever consider.

All I can say is are Ten-Tec in financial trouble? The true market price  here in the UK must be less than £700, so they are about £300 adrift in my estimation.

Even in the USA $995 for a rig with no 60m, no 12m and no 6m is way over the top. Just compare with the FT817ND for example. Even the Elecraft KX3 is much better value,  in my view.


Roger Lapthorn, G3XBM, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Cambridge, England.

2 Responses to “Ten-Tec Argonaut VI”

  • Harry K7ZOV:


    I got a Arg VI and used it for a short while, then sold it. At the time was able to compare it to the FT-817 and the KX3, which I still own. The radio RX is as good, if not better then the T-T Eagle. The size is small and the way things or done is very clean and simple. Not really a bad radio. But as you stated way over priced. In the same price range as a KX3 which has a better RX and a ton more features. The 817 has a lot going for it for the price, but to me the KX3 is just plane the best QRP radio in the market today, and will be for years to come.

    Tentec is in trouble. Elecraft and others are killing them. The Eagle is outstanding but over priced. The Arg VI is outstanding but over priced and was under featured. The new QRP amp is way over priced and with no way of adding a internal ATU. They have made promises for years on up grades and fixes to their high end radios, and I have been told it has not happened.

    My feeling is the Argonaut VI is a really nice $500-$600 QRP radio. Not a penny more. The FT-817nd is a radio that does it all, but does not have the best RX/TX design and when the ND came out it would have been a good time to really make the radio shine. They did not. However for general radio for the field I have no complaints. The KX3 is just plane wonderful and awesome. Like all Elecraft products a bit pricey but in the end well worth it. I have a fully loaded KX3. I just picked up a very rare used KXPA100 amp and KXAT100 unit. I can not afford a new one and but I could the used one. It is outstanding..but… you need money to buy it. I have the PX3 band scope on order. Should be here in late July. I am assuming it will be no less then the P3 when it comes to how it functions. I have a K3/P3 and it is nothing short of awesome.

    So your feeling about the Argonaut VI are right one. A whole lot of money for a radio that is missing more then a few bands… A lot more missing.

  • Rob, AA1UY:

    K7ZOV makes me laugh. You say that the Ten Tec Argonaut 539 is too expensive yet you’ve got a boatload of even more expensive Elecraft gear. Well, I think that everything Elecraft is over-priced. As for the KX3, no it doesn’t have a better receiver than the 539, has a bunch of bells & whistles that I would never use and is more expensive than the 539. It’s also plug ugly and has wires sticking out from every angle.

    You have your opinion and that’s mine.

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