When I bought a Xiegu X6100 earlier this year, I contemplated selling my KX2, but having been in North Wales for almost a week now, the KX2 has been in the rucksack most days and the 6100 hasn’t, so I’m glad I didn’t. Why ? Well, I guess the main reasons are that 6100 is a tad heavier than the KX2 and I take a lipo out with me if I use either, so although the internal battery on the 6100 is handy, I want the extra power an external battery gives you (10W on the 6100, 12W on the KX2).
Also, as my inverted V dipole is resonant on and around the “SOTA” SSB frequencies (17,20,40m), so I don’t really need the tuner on the 6100 - although I am considering one day upgrading the KX2 just in case I manage to master CW and need to tune to the bottom of the bands. Also, as my eyesight is getting pretty bad these days, I can’t really see all the menus on the 6100 so I end up adjusting things I don’t intend to by mistake. Because of the reflection of the sky on the screen, I find I have to cover the 6100 and my head with a cagoule, or such like, to be able to see the menus, and that’s all such a faf. Both have built in SWR meters, but the scale on the one on the 6100 is linear which means all you can tell is the SWR is less than 2:1, so I end up putting a nanoVNA or external swr meter in the rucksack just in case. The one on the KX2 tells you exactly what it is on the frequency selected; which is all you really need.
Yes the waterfall is a nice thing to have (I have a ICOM 7300 back home) but I’ve found I really don’t use it when out portable. I guess if I was summit camping, searching for S2S it might be useful to see where the RF is, but the SOTA app tells you all this anyway - assuming you can get service on a summit.
In my (limited) experience the KX2 interface is much simpler to use when you’re outdoors, the only downside is the quality of the audio - which is also pretty pants on the 6100 to be fair. If you whack up the volume to 11 to hear a feint station, everything gets a bit distorted for everyone else, especially when good old reliable Chris (F4WRN) comes back to your QC call and wastes your ear drums. The solution I’ve found for both radios is a pair of ear phones as recommended by Martin (M7BIA).
I’m going to keep the X6100 as it’s an amazing radio for its size and price (It’s essentially a QRP ICOM 7300). I brought both radios (and a FT-818) with me on this trip to North Wales and as the KX2 has been up Cadair Idris, Glyder Fawr, Trum Y Drysgal, Myndd Brafon, Holyhead Mountain, Craig Cwm Silyn and will be in the rucksack tomorrow on Yr Aran, the KX2 is clearly my preferred HF radio.
I wonder if anyone else has both radios and whether they have reached the same or different conclusion ?