Icom 5100A Review : Ultimate Ham Radio Rig?

The icom 5100a is a high-end amateur two-way radio designed for both mobile and base operations. This radio offers excellent performance, with a user-friendly interface and a robust construction suitable for harsh environments.

The icom 5100a is an exceptional radio that boasts of a host of features that set it apart from other radios in the market. It packs advanced digital processing capabilities that enhance clarity and signal strength, making it ideal for use in noisy and congested areas.

With its touch screen display, the radio enables easy access to menus and settings, allowing users to customize its performance to suit their needs. Additionally, the icom 5100a has an extensive memory bank that can store up to 1,000 channels, making it a versatile radio suitable for use in various communication scenarios. Overall, the icom 5100a is a solid investment for any amateur radio enthusiast in search of top-notch performance and versatility.


Dual-Band And Dual-Watch Functions

The icom 5100a is a dual-band radio, allowing it to operate on both uhf and vhf frequencies, making it a versatile choice for different types of communication such as amateur radio, public safety, and emergency services. Additionally, the dual-watch function lets the user listen to two different frequencies simultaneously, with a priority channel that can be set for quick access.

Built-In Gps Receiver

One of the most impressive features of the icom 5100a is the built-in gps receiver. This feature allows the user to view their position, and the position of others, on a map display, making it incredibly useful for navigation and search and rescue operations.

Large And Clear Color Display

Another great feature of the icom 5100a is its large, color display, which is easy to read in any lighting condition. The display gives the user access to all the functions of the radio, including menus and digital modes.

Digital Capabilities

The icom 5100a has digital capabilities, including d-star, which provides clear, digital audio, data transfer, and gps position sending/receiving. This feature is particularly useful for emergency responders and public safety workers who need reliable, clear communication to get the job done.

Rugged And Durable Design

The icom 5100a is built to withstand tough conditions, with a rugged and durable design that makes it ideal for use in harsh environments. It is also water-resistant and dust-tight, making it an ideal choice for outdoor activities.

Overall, the icom 5100a is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a versatile, durable, and reliable radio with a range of outstanding features, including dual-band and dual-watch functions, built-in gps, a large and clear color display, digital capabilities, and a rugged design.


The icom 5100a is a high-end ham radio that has received plenty of positive feedback from users. While it offers various benefits, there are a few downsides to consider before purchasing it.

Higher Price Point Than Some Of Its Competitors

  • The icom 5100a comes with a price tag that is higher than its competitors in the market.
  • However, the radio’s advanced features and superior performance make it understandable why it is priced higher than other models in the market.

Can Be Complicated To Set Up And Operate For Beginners

  • Beginners might find setting up and operating the icom 5100a a bit challenging at first.
  • The radio requires some technical knowledge, and users need to read the manual thoroughly before using it.
  • However, once users get the hang of it, operating the radio becomes relatively easy.

Limited Transmit Power Compared To Other High-End Ham Radios

  • The icom 5100a’s transmit power is limited compared to other high-end ham radios available in the market.
  • While the radio’s transmit power might not match those of its competitors, its excellent frequency range and superior dsp filtering capabilities make up for its lower transmit power.

While the icom 5100a has a few cons, they are relatively minor when compared to its numerous pros. If you are willing to pay a higher price for a superior ham radio, the icom 5100a is an excellent choice.

Frequently Asked Questions On Icom 5100A Review

Does The Icom 5100A Have Gps Capabilities?

Yes, the icom 5100a has built-in gps functionality that allows for easy navigation and location sharing.

How Many Memory Channels Does The Icom 5100A Have?

The icom 5100a has a generous 1052 memory channels, divided into 26 memory banks for easy organization.

Can The Icom 5100A Be Used For Digital Modes?

Yes, the icom 5100a supports multiple digital modes, including d-star, nxdn, and p25 (with optional ut-125 module).

What Is The Output Power Of The Icom 5100A?

The icom 5100a has a maximum output power of 50 watts, making it suitable for both mobile and base station use.

Is The Icom 5100A Easy To Program?

Yes, the icom 5100a can be easily programmed using the supplied software, or directly from the radio’s front panel user interface.

Can The Icom 5100A Be Used For Satellite Communication?

The icom 5100a can be used for satellite communication, provided that a suitable antenna and other equipment are used.


The icom 5100a is undoubtedly a great choice for anyone looking for a reliable and feature-rich mobile radio. With its compact design, superior audio quality, and excellent reception capabilities, it is a perfect fit for any communication needs. The radio is easy to use, and the menu system is intuitive, making it a great option for beginners.

One of the major selling points of the icom 5100a is its versatility. Whether you are a ham operator, a truck driver, or a first responder, this radio is designed to meet your needs. The d-star technology makes it easy to connect with other operators all over the world.

Overall, the icom 5100a is a high-quality mobile radio that delivers excellent performance and value for its price. Whether you are looking for a new radio for personal or professional use, this radio is definitely worth considering. With its impressive range of features, it is sure to exceed your expectations and provide you with years of reliable service.

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