Icom IC-F3001/F4001 Radio Disassembly and Review

Hi Guys. This a review and disassembly of the F4001 (and F3001) radio by Icom America, Inc. I posted this tech review on my blog but wanted to share it with those of you who may be on the fence about the Icom radios. I would definitely recommend this radio over the RDU and RDV series by Motorola.

Icom IC-F4001 | IC-F3001 Radio: What’s Inside, Disassembly, and Tech Review

Only a little more than a year ago Icom America, Inc. released a new, easy to use, portable radio in the business industry and commercial market. The Icom IC-F4001 (UHF) or F3001 (VHF) is similar to it’s siblings, most notably the Icom F4011/3011 but with a few exceptions. What makes this radio great is the addition of MDC, 2-tone, and 5-tone signalling which puts it in direct competition with the Motorola CP200 as the standard for basic two-way radios. Add on a Lithium Ion battery and low-profile antenna and you have yourself a winner! Lookout BPR40, TK3302, and CP200 there are waves being made!

With any new radio I like to take a look at what’s “under the hood” since beauty doesn’t mean much when we are talking about two-way radios. A dependable, quality crafted radio is what both business and public safety industries rely on to carry out daily operations. These users need rugged, reliable equipment that puts function first, and form second (yet not forgotten).

So let’s take a look inside this Icom portable radio! We start by removing all the knobs, side accessory cover, and battery. Behind the battery are two silver screws that need to be removed.

You will need a spanner wrench or funky looking pliers such as these to remove the nut from the threaded antenna shaft. There is a silver nut that has no edges but only two indents on opposite sides of the nut. You can use the pliers to catch the indents and twist counter-clockwise to loosen up the nut.

Yo can now use a small flat-head screwdriver to pry the bottom of the chassis out of the plastic housing. Pull down to clear the top channel/volume selectors and antenna shaft from the housing.

Now take a look!

I am happy to see the speaker is actually wired to the circuit board! A major flaw of the CP110 and RDX radios by Motorola is the golden flexible arms that are attached to the circuit board and make contact with the speaker when the case is closed. I have seen many RDX radios with broken arms or not making good contact with the speaker which causes intermittent audio.

On the top is the rubber grommet which prevents water and debris from entering the radio through the top selector knobs or antenna shaft:

And now a peak at the actual circuit board:

Soldier connections look solid and circuit board is cleanly laid out.

Here is one of my pet peeves!! The other common issue I find on Motorola CP110 and RDX radios is the soldier joints on the PTT button-they break off all the time! Do you have a CP110, RDU or RDV radio that will receive but won’t transmit?? Open up your radio and I can bet your PTT button has snapped off the circuit board and it’s no easy fix :frowning:

Thankfully on the F4001 the PTT and other side buttons are supported by the metal chassis which sandwiches the the switches in-between the circuit board and itself:

Two-prong accessory connector (although not the most durable type of audio connector) seems to be well built and secure on the board:

Overall the radio looks solid inside and out based on a quick disassembly and overview of the construction and interior parts… Much better than your average “business” two-way radio. The Icom F4001/F3001 series are excellent radios for construction, hospitality, security, education, and recreation because of their small size, abundant features, and modest price tag.

How about TX/RX range and power comparison?