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Thread: Understanding two-way radios

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrCoffee View Post
    I, for one, had never heard of the ISM band until you posted that.... thank you
    It is a GREAT band to use for local communications because (per the regulations) the band uses FHSS (Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum) this gives you very secure communications that are VERY difficult to direction find

    You can use the relatively expensive Motorola “DTR” radios or you can use older Nextel Direct Connect Cellphones like the Motorola i355 (which can be found for $10 on ebay http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorola-i35...item1e8cf650bc) in Direct Connect mode. Both of which use the Digital VSELP Codec and hop frequencies 11 times per second.

    The only drawback to the 902Mhz-928Mhz portion of the ISM band is that it’s limited to 1 watt, this should give you clear communications for 2 to 3 miles under most circumstances, and the audio is vastly superior to analog radios

    Check out a comparison between a Puxin VHF/UHF radio and the i355



    With only 0.7 watts the i355 is vastly outperforming the 5 watt Puxing VHF/UHF radio

    With good terrain and a base station antenna users have gotten 15 miles of distance from the i355
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqxAQUH3dmQ
    Last edited by Tdale; 06-12-2014 at 11:15 AM.
    Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdale View Post
    It is a GREAT band to use for local communications because (per the regulations) the band uses FHSS (Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum) this gives you very secure communications that are VERY difficult to direction find

    You can use the relatively expensive Motorola “DTR” radios or you can use older Nextel Direct Connect Cellphones like the Motorola i355 (which can be found for $10 on ebay http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorola-i35...item1e8cf650bc) in Direct Connect mode. Both of which use the Digital VSELP Codec and hop frequencies 11 times per second.

    The only drawback to the 902Mhz-928Mhz portion of the ISM band is that it’s limited to 1 watt, this should give you clear communications for 2 to 3 miles under most circumstances, and the audio is vastly superior to analog radios

    Check out a comparison between a Puxin VHF/UHF radio and the i355


    With only 0.7 watts the i355 is vastly outperforming the 5 watt Puxing VHF/UHF radio

    With good terrain and a base station antenna users have gotten 15 miles of distance from the i355
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqxAQUH3dmQ
    This is some very cool stuff! Will check the video out when I am at home (for some reason my boss expects me to be doing work related stuff when I am at work... go figure.... ) What do you think of the Puxing rigs?

  3. #23
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    I have a few Puxing radios, mine are the older 777 and 888 models (4 of the 777 models and 2 of the 888 models) . Out of 6 radios only one is still working today (a 888 model) .

    I've heard good things about the PX-973 and it has cross band repeat, which could be useful as temporary makeshift repeater. But I have no personal experience with this specific model. It's on my list to buy one for testing.

    Quality of the Puxing 777 and 888 seems to be less than the Wouxun KG-UV6D radios I have. Both of them were purchased a few years ago and both are still working today.

    Baofeng also makes inexpensive radios, but like Puxing I've had a few quit working on me.

    I think the inexpensive Chinese radios are pretty good for the most part , but they can be hit or miss.

    Are you looking for a radio to talk to your hunting buddies or looking for a way to communicate during an emergency situation ?

    If it's the former a Puxing, Wouxun, or Baofeng should work just fine, if it's the latter I'd probably recommend something different.
    Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdale View Post
    Are you looking for a radio to talk to your hunting buddies or looking for a way to communicate during an emergency situation ?

    If it's the former a Puxing, Wouxun, or Baofeng should work just fine, if it's the latter I'd probably recommend something different.
    Actually, I have had two of the Puxing and a Wouxun (??) and had lousy luck with them. PITA to program, and ended up failing fairly early in life (9months??). Replaced them with Yaesu units (VX-150, VX-170, FT-50R, FT-60R) , which I love, and a couple of older Radio Shack HTX-200's.(the Radio Shack units are a PITA to program too, but the size/weight is prefect for hiking, and they have worked well for me).

    Was pretty curious if anyone actually had good luck with the Puxing units.

  5. #25
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    I keep a Yaesu VX-3R in my EDC, it's a great little radio. I've always liked Yaesu products.

    My main SHTF radios are VHF Motorola XTS 3000's

    They are difficult to program at first, but once you get use to the Motorola CPS program it's not too bad.

    They are simply bulletproof and I like the fact that they run P25 and can run encrypted if there is a need for security.

    Lots of good options out there depending on your perceived needs.
    Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrCoffee View Post
    Was pretty curious if anyone actually had good luck with the Puxing units.
    I own four of the Puxing 777+'s, two have been in use in our vehicles for something like 3 years now. None have failed yet, but the battery/charger sux - leave one overnight in the charger and the batt will be fried by morning (lost 2 batt packs that way). Bought the 12v cigarette lighter adapters, used in place of the battery, and the adapter doesn't make good contact with the power strips/terminals on the radio without a cable tie to snug up the connection. Had to do that on both vehicles.

    So, imho (never having owned higher end HTs), decent radio, but powering them is a major hassle. Still want to try the PX-973 for the crossband repeat too.
    Everything marked, everything 'membered. You wait, you'll see.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdale View Post
    I keep a Yaesu VX-3R in my EDC, it's a great little radio. I've always liked Yaesu products.

    My main SHTF radios are VHF Motorola XTS 3000's

    They are difficult to program at first, but once you get use to the Motorola CPS program it's not too bad.

    They are simply bulletproof and I like the fact that they run P25 and can run encrypted if there is a need for security.

    Lots of good options out there depending on your perceived needs.
    Sigh, I guess I need to spend more time exploring comms options. My Yaesu's are both my EDC and SHTF comms options for HT's. the VHF Motorola XTS 3000's sounds interesting, I never really considered encryption use before. The Yaesu VX-3R is a great little rig, I have often thought of grabbing one, but really couldn't justify it with 6 working HT's.....

    Quote Originally Posted by marked View Post
    I own four of the Puxing 777+'s, two have been in use in our vehicles for something like 3 years now. None have failed yet, but the battery/charger sux - leave one overnight in the charger and the batt will be fried by morning (lost 2 batt packs that way). Bought the 12v cigarette lighter adapters, used in place of the battery, and the adapter doesn't make good contact with the power strips/terminals on the radio without a cable tie to snug up the connection. Had to do that on both vehicles.

    So, imho (never having owned higher end HTs), decent radio, but powering them is a major hassle. Still want to try the PX-973 for the crossband repeat too.
    Interesting... will have to dig around and see if I can find mine in the HT graveyard box in the cellar..... thanks

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrCoffee View Post
    Sigh, I guess I need to spend more time exploring comms options. My Yaesu's are both my EDC and SHTF comms options for HT's. the VHF Motorola XTS 3000's sounds interesting, I never really considered encryption use before.
    You're probably just fine with your current radios, having Encryption is most likely overkill, I doubt my group ever be in a situation where we need it. However the XTS3000 radios are simply astoundingly good Radios with-in their limitations.

    If you find that you want encryption capabilities most of the XTS3000's have encryption boards that will do DES/XL, DES/OFB and AES-256 (I know all mine do) however you will need an appropriate KVL to load encryption keys.

    You will not find a more rugged or reliable radio than an XTS3000, you wouldn't believe the crap we put them through in the Border Patrol.

    If you're patient and have a little luck you can be find them on Ebay for around $100ea, (I bought a bunch of them a few years ago and my average cost was around $110 per radio). Brand new they cost the government around $4000...... At least that is what we were told in the Border Patrol.

    Their disadvantages are that they are hard to charge in the field in a grid down situation, They are single band, they are not field programmable, and they are rather big and heavy when compared to a standard Ham Radio. Really the only limitation that bugs me is how to charge them on the move during a Grid Down SHTF and that the size of the XTS3000 makes it a poor choice for an EDC.

    for a size comparison you can see that the XTS3000's are pretty big compared to the smaller HAM type radios


    This is where radios like the VX-3R and i355 excel. The i355 has very good security (almost as good as an encrypted XTS3000), almost impossible to DF (Better than an XTS3000), it's small and light, and it's easy to charge on the go. The VX-3R, along with being small, light, and easy to charge has a nice wide band receiver along with giving you access to 2 meter and 70cm ham bands.

    In my GHB I keep a small folding solar panel for charging my Cell Phone, AA Batteries, and a few other things like my VX-3R and my i355, but I cannot charge my XTS3000 with the small solar panel, so that's a pretty big drawback to the XTS3000 during a grid down SHTF. Once I got to my BOL charging them wouldn't be a problem, but getting there might require the use of a different radio that you could easily charge.

    Once you start buying radios it quickly becomes an addiction lol
    Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tdale View Post
    Patiently waiting on the pending train wreck that is sure to come
    Let's hope the boiler has a full load of coal below her, I like my wrecks bordering the unbelievable!

  10. #30
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    You can use the relatively expensive Motorola “DTR” radios or you can use older Nextel Direct Connect Cellphones like the Motorola i355 (which can be found for $10 on ebay http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorola-i35...item1e8cf650bc) in Direct Connect mode. Both of which use the Digital VSELP Codec and hop frequencies 11 times per second.


    Thanks TDALE for the heads up on the i355, going to pick up some soon
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