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Everything posted by JeepCrawler98

  1. You might find radio mobile online a useful tool; it'll let you map expected propagation based on topography, vegetation, and built up areas. It does point-to-point link calcs as well as general propagation. It's free for ham and GMRS frequencies: https://www.ve2dbe.com/rmonline_s.asp The trick to getting accurate results is to turn the required reliability up to about the 90-95% range.
  2. Good find; the user manual has some interesting tidbits in it - namely mention of a mini XLR connector on the radio for remote headsets. Looks like they have it channel locked to the standard 22 + 8 arrangement; I wish the consumer oriented manufacturers would get out of the habit of doing that as there's no limitation on the number of memory channels a GMRS radio can have access to, just the frequencies. If they want to keep it newbie proof keep the first 30 channels locked as is and allow the memory channels above 30 to be whatever. An alphanumeric display with an option for more than 30 total memory channels (like 128 or so, like many commercial Part 95 radios and the increasingly popular Wouxun KG805, KG905, and KG1000) would be really nice to have for those who use repeaters a lot. I get that the FCC recommends the 22+8 arrangement for approval in their technical bulletins, but it's not actually a requirement for approval, so if you happen to be a manufacturer reading this (looking at you Midland, Retevis, B-Tech): STOP IT! There's no actual need. Also sad to report the USB connector on the body is supposedly for charging only; hopefully they have a way to get a programming cable hooked up like the MXT400. As seems to be standard for Midland they have a really attractive physical packaging and decent performing radio, but are being too conservative with the programmable bells and whistles for the price point; these would be so easy to incorporate it's a shame not to IMO.
  3. JeepCrawler98


    $70... some day it'll be $35...
  4. Would hooking up a computer with some audio spectrum analyzer software work? You could set it to 'peak hold'; and I'd suspect you'd see a bunch of audio peaks held in the sub-audible range of the passband where the PL's rolled in. Probably wouldn't work on DPL I suppose, but CTCSS should be fine.
  5. Using another repeater falls under the cooperative use clause and restrictions by the owner fall under 'individual licensee duties' of 47 CFR §95.1705: Repeaters are still classified as 'stations.' This section is why many repeater owners require permission, as they're technically required to keep a list of control stations. Key takeaways: "Shall determine specifically which individuals, including family members, are allowed to operate (i.e., exercise operational control over) its GMRS station(s)" (2) May allow any person to use (i.e., benefit from the operation of) its GMRS repeater, or alternatively, may limit the use of its GMRS repeater to specific persons; (3) May disallow the use of its GMRS repeater by specific persons as may be necessary to carry out its responsibilities under this section. "Specifically" in that first paragraph implies that a repeater's licensee must specify who you allow to act as a control station (which is any station using a repeater) over your GMRS station (in this case a repeater). This pretty much means that you have a duty as a repeater owner to keep a list of users to be compliant with this rule. This is aside from helping to tune out the noise caused by people who take others' hard work for granted and cause trouble. I don't think anyone stumbling onto a GMRS repeater is breaking the rules as a control station since it's hard to post a repeater as locked down in a matter fitting public notice; but the repeater owner does have a legal burden to keep track of you as a permitted user which users need to be aware of and thus should notify repeater owners of their intent. Of course, per the above, they can tell you to get off their equipment too and it's entirely within their rights to do so. In practice; is this ever enforced and does the FCC care? I doubt it - but it is in the rules.
  6. There's a windows version too that runs fine on Windows 10 64-bit if you wanted something more modern. Bite the bullet on a good USB Kenwood programming cable - it'll work on any of their 8-pin mic LMR radios and repeaters; you'll find yourself using it all the time. If you need to use Linux I recommend loading up a VM in virtualbox; works fine as well on this end.
  7. When modifying my signature on the forum; I get a "signature spans too many lines" error - even though it fits on one line. Can I have more than 0 lines? I promise to keep it less than 3,000!
  8. Fair enough for simplex; but you have to remember that if you're using a repeater you don't own yourself you're actually actively using someone else's radio in addition to your own. This is why repeater owners may have their own rules and practices they want followed when using their hardware; sometimes these rules include not having roger beeps. Since on repeaters you have people monitoring for traffic from others and are often dependent on them for communications, aside from the fact that they tend to be watering holes for radio traffic - you are forcing other operators to listen to you. Simplex, not so much a problem because you can tune out and not miss anything as you mentioned.
  9. Typically in this case the repeater operator turns on the courtesy tone if it's deemed necessary; if the repeater has one already and people run their own roger beeps it quickly gets old. In either case I wish manufacturers would default to them off - the Baofeng and Wouxun roger beeps are just awful to listen to; unharmonious and overmodulated. Some of the commercial units have the roger beeps which are just very brief and short 'blips' - these are much more tolerable.
  10. Did not know about the RA25 - it's probably on par with CCR performance but that's the cheapest 'new' mobile I've seen for GMRS yet. Not a huge fan of the cheap stuff, they have their use for sure, but especially with mobile antennas where you're getting a bit more gain receiver overload becomes pretty apparent and can make it almost unusable in a crowded environment. Receiver is more important than your transmit - and it's the first thing manufacturers cheap out on. I am glad to see more consumer end radios entering the market on a daily basis though. FYI those B-tech/Baofeng mobile amps are not legal for GMRS since they lack Part 95 certification. Have you looked into getting a commercial radio, programming cable and software? If you hunt eBay you can pick up a Kenwood TK-880 for almost nothing and they're pretty easy to program with the KPG-49D software. Maybe a bit more than you want to chew off right off the bat; but it'd get you some excellent quality hardware for a cheap price, even if it is used.
  11. Unless it's a repeater itself making the beep where it's being used to pace a conversation, there's no need for it; just turn it off - the person listening knows when you have released the PTT just fine without it. The only use case I think that could be valid is if a recording is being kept for record purposes that could be referred to later, but again, that's not really something you're likely to encounter on GMRS, moreso the public safety side. MDC1200 or FleetSync bursts have a purpose; but its real-life usefulness is pretty limited for GMRS and I see it as more of a novelty. If you consider these as data burst transmissions they're also technically not allowed on the 467 Main Channels (repeaters intputs) per the rules - but that's splitting hairs. I believe most consumer radios that come with the roger beep turned on just have it so that they "sound like the cool radios with the data bursts" but that's just my guess.
  12. I've looked into this in the past; I still believe it's technically legal on GMRS if you want to argue it. I took this up with the FCC and below is what I received back from them. I think there's grounds to argue against their response, but it settled the issue for me (for now) anyways. Justified or not, and while APRS as a protocol is allowed, their stance is that they don't want it unless limited to a certified low-power handheld radio with fixed antenna, which severely limits its application as it eliminates the ability to develop a solid digipeating/gateway infrastructure (which I had planned to start developing at the time on one of the 462 interstitial 'FRS' channels) My original request to them: Their response:
  13. You gotta put the magic bacon grease in the machines to keep them running! Never had one of ours burn up...
  14. Ok; so ran into another interesting development on this today: I ordered a Retevis RT29 last week; seemed like a durable radio, although I expect the internals to be less than great. The IP67 rating, 2-year warranty, and 3200mah battery appealed to me - for $50, again, a cheap beater radio to throw around the woods that supposedly lasts almost a week on a single charge per some of the reviews (curious to verify that) and is supposedly submersible (also curious to verify that) This model is listed on FCC ID 2ASNRT76, which uses the RT76 as the primary radio, declaring the RT1, RT26, and RT29 as identical models. Retevis didn't answer my email I sent them before I ordered to see what the FCC ID's were on this radio (they stated they forwarded it onto engineering but never heard back). This showed up in the mail today; this radio is indeed badged compliant with the 2ASNRT76 FCC ID... so a legal Part 95E radio??? First impressions on the RT29: Again I don't expect great things from this radio performance wise and I literally got this in my hands with the sole intent of finding out what the manufacturer would send me, so take it with a pound of salt; the build quality feels excellent from a mechanical standpoint - very solid, not a creak to be heard, and feels similar to my TK380s and TK390s in terms of dead weight and general physical solidness. Feels a lot more sturdy than the KG805G which I'll say comes across as lightweight, although the bonus on that one is more so the memory channels and the receiver. I'm pretty sure you could knock someone out with it and still carry on a QSO. Perhaps a good radio for family use while you keep the high end gear for yourself... Firmware wise the RT29 is not locked to GMRS, and will do 400-480Mhz and will also do wideband and high power on the 467Mhz interstitial channels (I should note that dual part 90/95A surplus can do this too so that's probably not an actual deal-breaker and its up to the programmer to get it right). The radio I received is only listed for Part 95E, you could use it on the ham radio service but of course that's also not allowed per the FCC rules if you use it on GMRS as well.... so really just a legal GMRS or ham radio (not both), and even then you probably can only use it on medium power (5 watts) since that's what the 95E cert is limited to. First Impressions on the KG805G: now that i've had it for a few days with real-world use; it's indeed not a very selective receiver and does pick up and suffer from adjacent noise and interference fairly readily, it does do better than my UV82 (consider that a GMRS-V1 analogue) overall which is its competing market, but I will say that in low noise environments the receiver is very sensitive even with the stock antenna. In a clean environment, it seems to have a slightly easier time picking out signals than my Kenwood TK380, 390 and 3180 so its not without merit for a starter radio I'd say, and not a bad deal at all for a new radio with part 95 cert. Audio is generally very clear although lacking lows, but I'm also spoiled by Kenwood on this, transmit audio sounds excellent. The UV82 provided a richer sound due to the larger speaker, but it's also not as clear and easy to understand. Programming the channels beyond channel 30 works as advertised and is a big advantage over other panel-programmable GMRS radios in the current consumer market. I wish the radio felt more solid and had some more 'oomph' to it but honestly it's probably fine for most users. Havent thrown either of these on the spectrum analyser and power meter to see what they put out; but will get to that in time. If causing interference is indicative of transmitter cleanliness and used as an unscientific benchmark, the KG805G does readily knock my computer monitors offline, causes Lucifer himself to type random incantations on my keyboard, and also puts my computer in sleep mode as does the UV82. The RT29 also does, but less easily and only at 10W high power. The Kenwood commercial radios do not do this at all even though they put out the same amount of power as the 805 and 82.... things that make you go hmmmmmmm....
  15. Agreed - and that’s why we’re having discussion in the first place; there’s some really odd listings in that approval - especially the liberties taken in what they proclaim to be electrically identical radios, but the FCC has accepted this application regardless. Question is: *should* Wouxun start shipping these model with the WVTWOUXUN16 ID - are there any ramifications for licensees using any of these radios if they crack down at some point in the future?
  16. Truth; but what's your point for this thread? The reason superhet came up in terms of the 805G was to discuss electrical conformity with some of the liberties taken in the WVTWOUXUN16 application in the sense that we at least know it's not fully a radio on chip design; do any of the other listed models use RoC DS designs? If so we can at least say they're not the same radio even when looking at what makes a radio circuit identical in the abstract sense.
  17. I had someone here in town look into renewing their expired license but the waiver fee was hundreds of dollars; I'd call it a loss and just apply for a new one.
  18. If you're going to bring up 95.1703 you could just as easily argue that talking to strangers is de facto activity between two or more individual licensees looking to do the same; chatting away on GMRS is fine in my book, if you're using a repeater you just want to make sure the owner is okay with it since you're using private equipment where duty cycle is sometimes a concern. You just need to be careful to leave some room for folks not sitting on the mic for extended periods as well. The bigger threat than excessive rag-chewing on GMRS is not using it, especially since the FCC is of the 'use it or lose it' mindset given the high dollar value of commercial spectrum. Rumor has it in that in the 2017 rule changes there was talk of dropping the repeater provisions completely since they were convinced nobody was using them and that it was all bubble-packs with no real infrastructure, until they dug a little deeper and found a few sources proving otherwise. That would've sucked. That's exactly the way to do it - it takes traffic to make traffic; once it gets to be too much traffic and you have some local regulars you're serving you can start to make your repeater (system) more self-sustaining without relying on distant links if that's what you're looking for. Once you get some local interest going and some hands-on experience with making repeaters and linking work reliably you can often approach other repeater owners in the area with open repeaters and get them on board as well. You then start getting into consistent wide area coverage which makes GMRS way more useful for supporting local and regional activities between individual licensees and their families, and you can still have the rag chewing in the mix if you schedule things wisely.
  19. So what? We can't say superhet now? Doesn't change the fact that it's using heterodyning on the radio as opposed to direct sampling (Where DS has a much wider passband and why a lot of the CCR's that have massive desense problems). Could the receive and transmit filtering be improved? Of course; so can that of all major brand radios. Besides; the discussion was regarding electrical conformity between different radio types as it pertains to a granted FCC ID, not some philosophical debate about the best way arrange an RF stage.The 805G meets the FCC's requirements for emissions at 4-5W per the testing and is perfectly legal to use regardless of if the filtering could be improved to match that of a 'real' radio - end of story. I don't expect the 805G to perform as well as the commercial radio equipment I have - I'd hope not, it's a $79 brand new radio with inexpensive accessories (batteries and chargers), the expensive ones better offer an improvement or they'd be missing their mark. This one just 'should' be better than the GMRS-V1 or Retevis RT76P as they're all entry level. If it's affordable, doesn't upset me if it gets lost or grimed up dragging around the dirt by me or my family, is legal, and performs as well or better than others in it's price range it's doing its job.
  20. Sure; fccid.io is a data aggregator though that farms out of the FCC database - it's easier and quicker to navigate and has sources you can link, and I've found it accurate. But yes, the FCC database itself should be considered the primary source in case of discrepancies. The KG-805G is a superhet design though; if the other models given are 'radio-on-chip' designs (direct sampling / SDR) it just further discredits that conformance letter on the application, unless the transmit side is somehow set up with that ROC design that most the other CCRs use and it's just the receive side they've tweaked. If you look at the exhibits for the interior photos it doesn't look at all like the other single chip designs, but I'd need to do some digging on the model number of that chip that everyone's using these days, maybe someone else has sharper eyes. The other possibility is that Wouxun has a standardized transmitter design that's not a radio-on-chip but is still used in all their listed radios - it's a reach to call all their radios identical this way, but I guess that's left up to some engineer's or officer's discretion? I can't directly verify either condition first hand. The question still remains whether Wouxun is issuing any other radios with the "WVTWOUXUN16" ID outside of the KG805G - that ID is going to be the only thing that makes it that particular type-accepted radio in the FCC's eyes. edit: the single chip transceiver that Baofeng likes to use seems to be an AT1846S or RDA1846. I'm sure there's others.
  21. Yeah it looks like the WXVTWOUXUN08 includes the KG805; I assume with KG-805G you mean WXVWOUXUN16 since they've pulled it out separately as you pointed out, but the KG-805 appears to have 95A (prior to the rule change) as well. Both the 08 and 16 application seems to take the same approach of including multiple models. It's my understanding that manufacturers are allowed to revise their radios so long as it's not a major deviation from the original design; at who's discretion is a major deviation made? I suspect it's probably the manufacturer's best judgement, which doesn't necessarily ensure good judgement. The question always remains is what label comes with it; that's the crux of all these import radios - it can be hard to determine before hand that what you end up with even has any FCC ID imprinted on it somewhere, let alone the one you need; the 16 application lists a lot more models, and they could take the approach that Retevis does on the RT97 repeater where depending on what 'option' you select it comes with a different FCC ID even though the basic radio is model number remains the same. Motorola does this too with some of their radios which often have shared 'marketing' model numbers (I can think of the Radius radios at the moment) the only way to identify what you're getting is to look at the part numbers, but often the FCC ID label is easier. Kenwood on the other hand has a different model number for every radio variant. I'll see if I can dig up the reddit thread on the WVTWOUXUN08 discussion. Edit: https://www.reddit.com/r/gmrs/comments/e9ytiy/new_wouxun_kg805g_professional_gmrs_radio/
  22. Agree with all topics at a fundamental and practical level - to play the other hand though; the Grant of Equipment Authorization doesn't identify the KG-805, the name of Grantee is "Quanzhou Wouxun Electronics Co, Ltd" and the identified equipment is "WVTWOUXUN16" So the question remains; what equipment is WVTWOUXUN16? I would argue its whatever the manufacturer labels it as such on the sticker and are consistent with their approved filings. This is why type accepted radios require the manufacturer affixed label bearing the FCC ID, and you can't just rely on the model number. The primary model is of course the KG805G, I assume it comes with the WVTWOXUN16 sticker, but the approved application submitted to the FCC for WVTWOUXUN16 includes the laundry list of other radios as well. I suspect the FCC certification covers the whole submittal package from the manufacturer and testing agency, and the whole thing would be rejected if they disagreed with this approach or some other portion of the paperwork filed. It remains to be seen what ID's the other radios come with from Wouxun. I suspect it's likely Wouxun doesn't sell these other radios with the WVTWOUXUN16 ID affixed which makes them not model WVTWOUXUN16 in the FCC's eyes and thereby non certified. From a business standpoint; they may very well have the same basic transmitter circuitry even though the radios physically differ, and they want to reserve the right to sell these others units under their GMRS approval that they've been granted should they retool a few things to make them "KG805G like". This would avoid having to go through more certification processes then otherwise required; and the liability on this remains with Wouxun if they over-reach and release a radio who's emissions and operation does not qualify the way the KG805G has. Another fundamental question; if the radio is capable of transmitting outside of the GMRS frequencies, power levels, and emissions but is not front panel programmable, does it disqualify for part 95E certification? The 95E rules only prevent the radios from operating in other services for which no certification is required (amateur radio bands) and doesn't necessarily land-lock them to GMRS alone; case in point is the historical dual 90/95A certified radios, which have always been able to operate in excess of GMRS' regulations and it's up to the licensee to ensure their equipment operation and programming complies with the cut-and-dry restrictions of GMRS when using that service. The FCC has publicly stated that its intent is not to limit manufacturers from dual certifying 90/95 radios as is the case for commercial surplus gear.
  23. So we all know that the Wouxun KG-805G is a modern manufacture good quality radio has type acceptance for Part 95E, making it legal for use on GMRS. I have no beef with this radio; it seems like a solid unit that's well thought out, in fact I just ordered one myself to add to the collection, and am excited to get my hands on it even though I have a good collection of commercial gear laying around. In doing a bit of digging around; I found that while its FCC ID is primarily based on the KG805, the application lists a plethora of other models and certifies them to be 'electrically similar' and are therefore included under a blanket 95E certification. SAR Evaluation Report: https://fccid.io/WVTWOUXUN16/RF-Exposure-Info/SAR-Report-4695713.pdf Declaration of electrical conformity: https://fccid.io/WVTWOUXUN16/Letter/Product-Similarity-Declaration-4695702.pdf This can all be found on the FCC ID listing: https://fccid.io/WVTWOUXUN16 The certification by this blanket approval includes the following models: KG-805G,KG-703E,KG-801E,KG-879,KG-869,KG-659E,KG-978,KG-939,KG-998,KG-918,KG-828,KG-988,KG-958,KG-959,KG-969,KG-968,KG-928,KG-UV8H,KG-UV9DPlus,KG-UV9P,KG-839,KG-979,KG-989,KG-999,KG-916,KG-926,KG-936,KG-956,KG-966,KG-976,KG-986,KG-996,KG-826,KG-836,KG-856,KG-866,KG-876,KG-886,KG-896,KG-838,KG-858,KG-868,KG-878,KG-888,KG-898 I found similar results under a listing for the Retevis RT97 repeater; again the primary certification is based on the RT97 portable repeater: https://fccid.io/2ASNSRT97 The RT97's test report: https://fccid.io/2ASNSRT97/Test-Report/Test-report-4720800.pdf Where lab testing thereby certifies the following additional listed models: RT90, RT92, RT93, RT94, RT95, RT98, RT99, RT9000D, RT9550 The above models are even more interesting as these are all DMR radios, in fact some are DMR/LTE/Wifi integrated repeater systems. Does this mean that if any of the above models come with Wouxun's and Retevis' labels that include the FCC ID (WVTWOUXUN16 or 2ASNRT97) that they're legal to use on GMRS? I find this odd because many of these are full-on ham radios with no 'locked down' special firmware or completely inapplicable commercial equipment, in fact a couple models are VHF only. They shouldn't have part 95E certification, but per the above FCC-ID's somehow do? This seems like an oversight; but with Wouxun and Retevis swallowing the "we promise its the same radio" pill and the liability that comes with it, it makes me wonder if you're in the clear as a licensee for using them so long as you use them within the rules of Part 95E to which operators are bound; after all the FCC granted all these radios the certified status? Anyways, fuel for the fire... happy new year!
  24. Modulation or how you use that power does too - narrow-band FM (11.5khz width) vs wideband FM (16Khz width) has by the equivalent of about 6db penalty on SNR when looking at highest modulating freq (2.75khz vs 3.00khz) & peak deviation (3khz vs 5khz) per Carson's rule. https://urgentcomm.com/2010/04/01/cut-your-losses/ edit: I see this topic was already heavily discussed in this thread; carry on!
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