Reviews seem to suggest that the Xiegu G90 is a fairly good Chinese HF transceiver. The G90 received an impressive 4.6 out of 5 rating from 33 reviews posted at eham.net.
With an SDR structure, internal antenna tuner, flexible transceiver settings, highly configurable bandwidth filters and 20 watts of power, the Xiegu G90 is attractive at its price point.
My thinking is that the G90 might be suitable for my Parks on the Air operations, Field Day and other events. My primary concern would be the 15 second FT8 duty cycle and how the finals would hold up. I’d like to hear from you if you have used the G90 with FT8.
Just for the sake of mentioning it here, the new Xiegu GSOC external controller / panadapter is, in IMHO out of the question. I am not sure if the GSOC has been released in the U.S. yet but the suggested $500 list price sure scared me off. Here’s a link to a YouTube video with a quick view of the GSOC display.
Coupling the GSOC with the G90 would lead me right back to ordering a second ICOM IC-7300 for my portable operations. When comes to the GSOC, judge it for yourself.
Updating the G90 firmware is not exactly straightforward. The firmware has to be updated separately in the display head and main body. The firmware can be downloaded from various places.
I found the firmware, terminal program (yes… a terminal program) and necessary drivers on Xiegu.eu site in zip format. Some of the sites have downloads in the .rar format which requires 7Zip software on Windows. As of this post, the latest G90 firmware version is 1.74.
Here’s a video of the procedure to follow from YouTube. The video covers firmware version 1.73 but the procedure is exactly the same.