Year Introduced: 1997
Power: Mains
Size: 238 x 93 x 227 mm
Weight: 2.2 kg
Price: US $1300, £950 (inc VAT), A$3250
Coverage: 0-32 MHz
Value Rating star starstarstarstarstar

This review was compiled independently. The Medium Wave Circle and Radio Netherlands has no financial connection with AOR, the manufacturer of this receiver.

The AOR AR7030 PLUS follows on the successful AR7030 launch in early 1996. There are a number of improvements in the new version.

We have not yet tested the AR7030 PLUS. In summary, the AOR UK Web site details the improvements and enhancements of the PLUS version as:

“Increased balance of the mixer for greatest IP2 & IP3
High tolerance 0.1% components in DDS ladder for low noise
Enhanced RF attenuator operation for minimal intermod
Higher spec wire aerial input transformer for minimal mixing products
Ceramic metal cased 4 kHz (displayed) AM filter fitted as standard (typical bandwidths: 2.2kHz, 4.0 kHz, 5.3kHz 9.5kHz)
Bourns optical encoder for the smoothest DX tuning
Features CPU fitted, 400 memories, multi timers and alpha tag”

Otherwise, the PLUS’s external appearance and functions are similar to the AR7030. The receiver was designed by John Thorpe, the designer of the popular Lowe HF-150. The receiver continues the British trend for producing high-quality receivers without frills at reasonable prices.

Other receiver features and capabilities include:

* 0-32 MHz coverage in AM, AM synchronous, CW, USB, LSB and DATA modes.
* Remote control keypad enabling direct frequency entry.
* Antenna connectors are two: 50 Ohms and 600 Ohms unbalanced input for wire antennas.
* Four IF filters with the option to add two additional filters.
* Two VFOs.
* Memories (400, up from 100 in the AR7030) that store frequency, bandwidth, mode, passband or BFO setting, squelch and scan include/exclude.
* Computer control.

The AR7030 PLUS continues the nested menus, displayed on the front panel display. The user must “drill down” to find settings and options. It is quite different than the Japan Radio Company NRD-series receivers that have almost every function on a separate knob or switch. Our listener feedback suggests the menu structure approach is a “love-hate” relationship with few users in the middle ground.

The AR7030 was an excellent receiver for the price, especially in Europe. Though we have not tested the PLUS version, the improvements cited by AOR UK should only make the receiver better.

The AOR AR7030 received the World Radio TV Handbook “Best Table Top Receiver” award for 1996-97.

This review first appeared on the Radio Netherlands website.