My recent purchase of a XIEGU X5105 was pretty much what I expected from a Chinese QRP rig. There were no real surprises and no rig in the $500 range is going to be perfect.
As much as I get a kick out if the rig, IMHO there are a few too many CONS over PROS. Understand that my evaluation is based on operating CW. If you happen to be an SWL’er or work other modes then I suggest you look elsewhere for opinions.
With tons of YouTube videos to choose from there’s no need to regurgitate the rig’s features or operation. A couple of words about X5105 YouTube videos. The current firmware is v3.0. Just be aware of the age of the videos out there because the v3.0 firmware radically changed how the display and menu system operate.
- Awesome antenna matching unit.
- Durable aluminum case with built in heat sink.
- Front facing speaker.
- DSP unit with low/high cut adjustments.
- Auto AGC, RF gain, noise reduction, noise blanker, etc.
- The LCD screen is easy to see in and outdoors.
- Backlit keys.
- Easy to learn/use menu system.
- Low power consumption.
- 3800mAh 12v internal Battery.
- Sturdy full featured hand Mic.
- Front facing speaker is too small and raspy. Headphones or ext. speaker a must.
- No low battery indicator. Rig just shuts off abruptly.
- Battery charging time is 10-12 hours.
- While recessed to avoid damage, the VFO is annoying to use.
- CW dot dash ratio needs better adjustment granularity.
- CW decode feature only works with very strong signals.
- Assigning messages to the preset message slots is tedious.
- Using the message slots for CW is useless because the VFO selects messages.
- *** The CW the relay clicks are way too loud and disturbing with headphones.
For the price of the X5105 I think XIEGU has done a decent job designing this QRP rig. The XIEGU X5105 is probably better suited for SSB or digital operating. If it’s a serious CW rig you are after, I’d say keep searching pilgrim.
72 es 73 de KE2YK