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New Radios with higher power limits


WQZT556
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I'm a newbie myself. I have GMRS and Technician Ham license, but haven't done much with either......I'm trying to figure out a back up communication plan for my family who live within 15 miles and have zero desire to get ham license......I'm looking into GMRS options. I literally just registered for this site with the goal of adding to my very limited understanding of some "new" radios from Midland. They are new to me anyway.

 

Their site lists 3 current models; 5 watts, 15 watts, and a 40 watt. I believe 2 of the 3 are capable of hitting GMRS repeaters.

 

Can seem to post a link here, not being allowed to paste.......google midland micromobile gmrs 2 way radios.

 

I'm not aware of any other manufacture, but I'd be willing to bet there is something out there.

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.....I'm trying to figure out a back up communication plan for my family who live within 15 miles and have zero desire to get ham license......I'm looking into GMRS options.

 

Those new Midlands are not bad radios for this task.  If you are looking to talk from house to house, as in base stations, then 15 Watts with a good outside antenna would do the job just fine.  If you want to talk from car to base, then that would work  too.  From car to car, you would be better off to get the 40 Watts radios, and it still might be tough in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, however there are good repeaters in the area that you may ask to use.

 

For emergency communications, don't rely on repeaters.  40 Watt radios with good antennas will have no problem doing 20 Miles from base to base, or car to base.  At your base stations, you might want to keep a spare 12 Volt gel battery around, charged up ready to use in case of power failure, then you will still have communications.

 

Don't forget, your GMRS license already covers your whole extended family.

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Has any manufactures come out with new radios (handheld and mobiles) That takes advantage of the new higher power limits ? Thanks, Mike

 

My expectation is that we won't see any new radios right away. There's a time lag to these things. They need to modify their designs, tool up the factories, and procure parts before they can build them. They also need to go through the FCC Type Acceptance procedure. Then they need to build then, ship them, and get them into stores for retail sales and warehouses for internet sales.

 

My best guess is that we might see something in time for Christmas, probably repackaged existing FRS/GMRS radios with new advertising claims, etc. as FRS only. Somebody might surprise us with new products by then, but I think we'd see those in the spring of 2018.

 

I don't think we'll see a ground swell of 5 watt GMRS portables in the stores for quite a while.

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Thank you for your comment Jones, i really appreciate it. I figured repeater access would be necessary to go 15 miles, even with the higher power unit. It would be nice to be able to use via simplex/station to station instead. Like you said, I don't want to have to rely on repeaters.

 

I've found it difficult to get range estimates/information on those midland radios, and I guess any radios for that matter. I understand that there are a lot of variables but I had no idea if I could expect 5 miles or 20 miles in my flat, urban sprawl type of environment. It is wonderful to hear I may be able to reach out to 15 or so miles.

 

I will likely be footing the bill for the 3 radios, which is a large investment for me. So I've been very hesitant to pull the trigger. This is a very helpful push to get me started.

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I've found it difficult to get range estimates/information on those midland radios, and I guess any radios for that matter. I understand that there are a lot of variables but I had no idea if I could expect 5 miles or 20 miles in my flat, urban sprawl type of environment. It is wonderful to hear I may be able to reach out to 15 or so miles.

Since UHF is essentially "line of sight" then the range may be estimated using a line of sight calculator such as this one here:

http://www.calculatoredge.com/electronics/lineofsight.htm

Assuming a height of 30' at each station, then LoS is roughly 12 miles for good quality communications. You may find that depending on the terrain, that you may exceed this estimate by several miles.

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  • 1 month later...

Has any manufactures come out with new radios (handheld and mobiles) That takes advantage of the new higher power limits ? Thanks, Mike

What is the newer power limit? Is it greater than 50 watts now?  I have been looking into gettign 3 of the Midland MXT400 radios at 40 watts. Wife has zero interest in gettign her ham ticket, so I am going to install a GMRS radio in her car.

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