The VGC VR6600PRO has been in my shack four days now. These are just first impressions; we didn’t do any measurements yet.
- The radio itself (main unit + front panel)
- Suction cup
- High quality power cable, no cheap round fuses, but the ones used in cars
- Separation cable
Extra (these are optional accessories):
- BTG-6600A1 (GPS & APRS module)
- PG-660 data cable
- GPS antenna
The manual is brief but clear. No funny / bad translations.
It takes a while to get accustomed to the menus, but I got the radio up and running within 15 minutes. Programming the 1000 memories is not difficult, but the radio isn’t very patient — within two seconds or so the menu will be gone. This should be extended somewhat; more than once I wasn’t fast enough. 10 seconds or so would be nice.
The suction cup is as strong as a horse, but it needs a perfectly smooth surface in order to be reliable. In the shack I use a ‘mouse pad’ made out of glass, a present I once got from Intel. Imperfect surfaces failed, some quickly, some overnight.
No ‘Chinese Disease’ here: loud and clear. In the menu you can adjust the microphone gain to match your voice.
Not too bad for home use, but the built-in speakers won’t have enough punch for mobile use. Buy external ones. Plural? Yes, you can connect two speakers to the radio, one for the left VFO and one for the right VFO. You can choose Stereo or Mono, when set to ‘Mono’ one speaker will do too. There’s a tone control in the menu, which allows you to match the tonal quality to the speakers in use.
No noisy AF amplifier, fortunately, and no volume problems. Volume to zero = silence.
Colors, brightness and contrast can all be set in the menu.
Front: DTMF keypad, four programmable buttons. Right side: lock switch, backlight switch. PTT switch is smooth and won’t give you the cramps.
There’s a slight delay between giving a command and the radio carrying it out. I would describe it as ‘a bit sluggish’.
Slow, about 1.5 – 2 channels / second. This radio is clearly not a competitor for a real scanner.
General Coverage RX
This works surprisingly well, even a few (strong) medium wave stations could be received on a Diamond X30 antenna, which is basically useless for these low frequencies. 1.25 Meters (220 MHz) is there too, but my European version won’t transmit there.
APRS & GPS
Not tested yet.
I might have found a minor one, but I’m not 100% sure. The VGC engineers enjoy their spring festival holiday now, so an answer will take some time. VGC confirmed that the firmware will be upgradeable.
Oh yes, the fan!
The fan is a funny one. It comes with a special power connector and a temperature switch (TO220 size). The bracket has been designed in such a way that you can mount the fan just below it. Spacers between the bracket and the fan guarantee a good airflow. If the radio gets too hot, the the fan will switch on.