Optima MK3 2012 ver 1.8 operators manual

Usage comments: Have had this radio on the bench now for 3 days.  Very stable. RX seems  same as previous models but seems to handle the FM  interference better. Maybe we have not had the bad stuff from Russia yet! The VFO /channel selector is pretty stiff compared to my MK2 which spun pretty easy. In fact I started using the up downs on the mic to save my delicate fingers!! Icom mic sounds more natuaral to some but most give a big thumbs up to the original mic.  Lots of depth.  Other than that it just keeps ticking along as it should.


We have been examining the MK3 Optima for a week now and were not happy with theway the mic sounded on SSB so requested a change and now it is sounding the way we like so it is ready to go. While originally the MK3 was supposed to be a new board with all the recent improvements to the circuit built in alas it is not the case! The board is still the same as the last two productions but there has been an update in the software to improve stabilty on SSB.


The mic circuit has been modded a little and the SSB sound is fine. Medium without too much low emphasis. Not too happy with the way the fan is attached. previously the fan was slightly recessed. Now it is tacked on the back..tackily at that. I much preferred the fan with the slight recess into the heatsinks as it looked ao much more professional. This is the quickest way to determine if you have a Mk3 or not. The other way is to look at the wording on the front panel.

If it says 10-12m AM/FM/SSB TRANSCEIVER you have the new MK3. Actually there is no functional difference between this and the previous model. Looks like the dual functioning knobs are a bit heavier duty and the yeticom Optima has a slightly different mic layout. Not sure if all the radios will be set up like ours but this was the one change we requested after testing the radio.

I will have more after I get my Mk3 out of customs and on to the bench where it will replace the version 2 with the func on the VFO I have been using for some time. I will be performing side by side tests to see if I can tell any changes in the way the radio performs. I think this could have been Optima ver 2.6 instead of Ver 3!

Optima Mk3 with non recessed fan

About David Donaldson

66 and Live in New Zealand now. Hiding from Covid 19! I like to ride my bicycles.
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32 Responses to OPTIMA MK3

  1. Tony says:

    Hi, Just bought mk3 Optima in the UK. Haven’t really tested yet but would have preferred 6/7 digit readout for ssb? Box shows 7 digits and they do appear to be there? Just not used.. Not keen on rubber knobs as I think they may wear quickly with use. Not sure about the stiff clicky vfo either.. Display resorted to dashes after being on standby for a while but returned after keying mike. Although I don’t use a roger beep I couldn’t activate one by switching on while holding ptt down, maybe excluded on mk3? Rf gain works in reverse? turning clockwise to increase sensitivety rather than reduce it Having said that its a nice compact and solid radio at a reasonable price. Tony

  2. J BRADLEY says:

    which pot do i turn to get my mk2 on frequency (SSB) ?

    • dd182003 says:

      depends on how it is off frequency…USB or LSB…you don’t wish to adjust the clarifier or is it sitting just off the indent?
      Hate the indent! Will email you re this..

  3. Pingback: Pretty Cheap For A "NEW" Yeticom Optima MKII - Page 3

  4. deejay1 says:

    Looking at buying one of these radios in February. Review and comments very helpful. Watched a video earlier and convinced it is what i want. Looking at putting it in the motor and using it for Dxing. Thanks Yeticom for a great little radio.
    Regards Dj1

  5. D Humphreys says:

    are their radio any good because I looking for a new radio I got a superstar3900 but I looking for something better than this thing I got here

  6. rob hicks says:

    I have a new mk3, tx and rx are inline with eachother but the clarifier has to be at 90clock to be at zero beat with received stations, is there a trimmer to set it at the 12.o clock position >

  7. Rob says:

    Radio was replaced with no quibble, a true gentleman who was keen to help.

  8. Radio Dr says:

    These are great radios. I use to have one when Radio Shack sold them at their 10 meter radios and it only did 10 meters! But now with 12 & 10 meters and a few extra functions should be a better radio!! Not positive if the Ham MK3 can be converted to CB or not.. I sell the Ham MK3 on my site…

    • dd182003 says:

      You sell them and you dont know what the frequency range is. Open one up and have a look!!

      • Radio Dr says:

        I know what frequencies most of the MK3 radios are capable of… But I don’t know if the ones I re-sell will adapt to 11 meters or not. I do not stock them.. I use drop shippers.. I get questions about it, But I’m assuming its only 10 & 12 meters… I have not ordered one yet for myself.. Will do soon..

      • dd182003 says:

        So where do you buy them from in that case?

      • dd182003 says:

        And FYI the optima covers 24.5 to 29.995 out of the box. It can be set up for 10 and 12m only or 40ch CB only with internal jumpers.
        I am sure the specs and manual can be downloaded from the yeticomnz web site.

  9. Martin says:

    Hi Guy’s ive just found this page and have just picked up a mk3 ,I have my clarifier at 12oclock to hear other people fine but they say they all gotta put their’s off to 10oclock to get me…This is on USB,, is there anything/adjust a pot i lil bit maybe….Any help would be really great …Marty

  10. andyzot says:

    I’ve had a mk3 for about a year now and it’s been excellent, however I took it out of my car over winter where it sat untouched, I’ve just fitted it in my van but it’s not working properly. On SSB I can hear myself through the rig and I only seems to peak at about 20w, on FM it peaks about 40w. Any help would be really appreciated. Thx

  11. Michael Mc Donald says:

    Just purchased a v3 optima the freq changed ok via the mic buttons but doesn’t with the vfo knob ? is there a rest I can do or is the radio faulty ? thx

  12. R. Flance says:

    Is the new Yeticom Optima MK3 still available for shipping to the USA, I have a Magnum 257 and wanted another one but there’s no new ones left for sale. I’d like to get a MK3 that is set-up for the U.S. 40 channels + the free-band frequencies. If this radio is still available please email me with total price including shipping at russfleenor@yahoo.com I’m located in Indiana USA zip code is 46060 Thank You for your time. R. Fleenor 9:06pm 08/18/2017

  13. Robert M says:

    Just bought the Yeticom Optima July 2018 and have had PROBLEMS with it staying on Frequency , it drifts alot ,first turn on clarifier sits on 9:30 position,then a while latter you find your getting closer to the 12 o’clock position….for a state of the art transceiver its pretty crappy for stability. spoke to the NZ Dealer ,and was given a run-around,and told its normal …ITS NOT ……my 30 year old radio is more stable than it ….NOT A HAPPY BUYER…..de VK4LA

    • I dont think the vco is “state of the art” Rob. Wait till they get dds in it!
      It is esentially a 30 year old design. Did you buy it from NZ?
      Still..none of mine drift like you are saying..is the receive the transmit or both?

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