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icom f21 vs the f21gm


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#1 walkabout

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 11:55 PM

very new to radios in general and completely new to GMRS. i did get a license though and purchased a couple of the Boafeng bf-888's and after having been lambasted for thinking of using them because they are not part 95 compliant (on another forum ), i returned them and im now looking for radios again. i have hear lots of good things about the icom f21 but people seem to prefer the f21 over the f21gm version. Can someone give the low down on these radio's. 

 

Thanks,

Adam


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#2 PastorGary

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 04:34 AM

Adam - Welcome to the Forum...

 

I located your inquiry over at RadioReference and the feedback that you received from William:   http://forums.radior...1-vs-f21gm.html

 

 

Personally I'm not at all familiar with any ICOM radios... I use Kenwood commercial equipment almost exclusively for GMRS and a couple Wouxun portables on my Part 90 licensed frequencies, but I'm sure that some of our members will chime in with opinions from personal experience.  Just give them a couple days to get back here after their weekend activities... remember, it's football season...LOL... :)



#3 Logan5

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 12:43 PM

I would have recommended keeping the BF888's and storing them in a metal box for a rainy day. the battery's should keep good for 5 years and would allow you some extra Non-part95 certified radios in the event of a major emergency. This would allow you to expand your group and or stand in's if the F21's get zapped. either way they are good little radios for 17 bucks. basically disposable when needed in special opps. I do not know anything about the f21's but if William recommends them for GMRS, they are good "part95" radios.



#4 Guest_spd641_*

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 02:00 PM

Yes,

I did recommend the ICOM F-21 to Adam but I am not a fan of the Boafeng due to some of the issues I have saw with those units which Baeofang owners  may not have came across yet,that is my opinion only,I will not take a stance on the non-Part95 radios in this forum as moderators we have agreed to stay neutral in this discussion on certified and non-certified radios and let every person do as they see fit in purchasing the radio of their choice.

 

When you post on the other forum you will get all kinds of misinformation about radio etiquette,use you best judgement when asking a question and receiving the answers,you have some that will advise you it is perfectly normal to use what ever you want or use any band.I really need to stay off that site for the most part as many will pick a fight with you over different topics but we all all human and have different opinions.

 

Adam,to answer you question again on the F-21gm vs.F-21 question.I did answer this on the other forum but I will do it again here.The difference in a ICOM F-21GM is pre-programed from the factory and a ICOM F-21 is flexible where you can change different pl tones if need be and also program different frequencies on GMRS or maybe a few amateur frequencies if you are licensed and it is legal to use both in the F-21 if you get the cable and software to do this.

 

Adam,

My apologize if you think I was involved in  lambasting  on the other site.If I am one of the people you are referring to.I do not believe I said  anything toward you about your choice in this radio.I only commented on someone else posting their comments on this matter.I hope you enjoy your stay here and enjoy our site,welcome to my GMRS...William



#5 Logan5

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 02:53 PM

William, I have a question, can the F21gm be reprogrammed with the same cable? or is it set the way it comes? That would make a big difference for many of us.



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Posted 15 September 2013 - 04:10 PM

Logan,

 The cable may work but the software should be different,each model of ICOM seems to have a different software for example the F-21s which is a 4 channel has a different software than a regular F-21.I wish it all was combined into on software but it isn't,while it would make better since to have all F-21 radios with a different selection in one software.I imagine it is all about money but the good thing is I did not have to pay for the software or the cable since I bought over $3,000 worth of radios I requested it for free and they agreed to it...William


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#7 Logan5

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 04:50 PM

Very good, I would consider the F21 over the,  F21gm then, as I as prefer not to be limited to just GMRS. I do know Icom makes some of the best radios,.



#8 Logan5

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 05:04 PM

When recommending radios, I am learning to clearly state what is and is not part95 certified. and I am getting better at making this note of this distinction between radios in my writings here and RR. There is much mis-information and misleading advertising that makes this even more important than ever.  Often a person makes outlandish claims or statements when void of knowledge and this is often countered with what seems to be a lambasting or flame throwing. A good student will read throw any insults and berating and find his way to the truth. a true lambasting would also be void of knowledge.  



#9 walkabout

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 07:43 AM

Yes,

I did recommend the ICOM F-21 to Adam but I am not a fan of the Boafeng due to some of the issues I have saw with those units which Baeofang owners  may not have came across yet,that is my opinion only,I will not take a stance on the non-Part95 radios in this forum as moderators we have agreed to stay neutral in this discussion on certified and non-certified radios and let every person do as they see fit in purchasing the radio of their choice.

 

When you post on the other forum you will get all kinds of misinformation about radio etiquette,use you best judgement when asking a question and receiving the answers,you have some that will advise you it is perfectly normal to use what ever you want or use any band.I really need to stay off that site for the most part as many will pick a fight with you over different topics but we all all human and have different opinions.

 

Adam,to answer you question again on the F-21gm vs.F-21 question.I did answer this on the other forum but I will do it again here.The difference in a ICOM F-21GM is pre-programed from the factory and a ICOM F-21 is flexible where you can change different pl tones if need be and also program different frequencies on GMRS or maybe a few amateur frequencies if you are licensed and it is legal to use both in the F-21 if you get the cable and software to do this.

 

Adam,

My apologize if you think I was involved in  lambasting  on the other site.If I am one of the people you are referring to.I do not believe I said  anything toward you about your choice in this radio.I only commented on someone else posting their comments on this matter.I hope you enjoy your stay here and enjoy our site,welcome to my GMRS...Williami

i did pick up a pair of the f-21's i have to get a charger and one belt clip and im now looking for the software and the cable. but no didn't get that feeling from you at all thou i do have to say that i my not go back there until i get my tech license. Once i have them is there someplace i can go to find out how to use repeaters? for the most part the are going to set up in talkaround mode but i do want to have be able to set up at least one or two channels for repeater use for the areas i'll be going to (if one is available) and also the shared frs/gmrs channels. for me thats why having the ability to program the radio myself was kind of important. having purchased my GMRS license becasue i wanted a little more power the flexiblity not avaiable in the blister pak radios i do feel obigated to operate within the guide lines of that license.


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#10 MSensei

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 08:20 AM

Hi Adam,

 

I too am relatively new to GMRS (but am familiar with HAM and will eventually get my HAM license).  I just picked up a Baofeng UV-5RE Plus (literally came yesterday) and am in the process of setting it up.  I'd be interested in seeing how your ICOM works out for you...

 

-David


-David


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Posted 26 September 2013 - 10:00 AM

i did pick up a pair of the f-21's i have to get a charger and one belt clip and im now looking for the software and the cable. but no didn't get that feeling from you at all thou i do have to say that i my not go back there until i get my tech license. Once i have them is there someplace i can go to find out how to use repeaters? for the most part the are going to set up in talkaround mode but i do want to have be able to set up at least one or two channels for repeater use for the areas i'll be going to (if one is available) and also the shared frs/gmrs channels. for me thats why having the ability to program the radio myself was kind of important. having purchased my GMRS license becasue i wanted a little more power the flexiblity not avaiable in the blister pak radios i do feel obigated to operate within the guide lines of that license.

Adam,

I think you will enjoy the F-21,it has several options where you can set it to receive two tone paging like I use where it keeps the radio silent if you wish until someone pages you from another compatible radio.Let me know if you need help finding any programming accessories...William


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#12 walkabout

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 11:56 AM

William,

 

Thanks i just got them on friday and i waiting for the charger to show...but i am looking for the programing software and a cable. also s one of them is missing the mic/sp dust cover...any idea where to pick up small repair parts? i cant wait to get this show on the road.

 

Thanks,

Adam


Icom IC-F21


#13 walkabout

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 12:11 PM

David,

 

im waiting for a charger to show up, i can tell you that they do look and feel much more substantial than the BF-888's that i had before. They are much heavier which for a gram counter like myself is always a concern but im sure they'll be fine.

 

As soon as i have them up and running ill let you know. We are planning a road trip to Bozeman Montana in december. The cell coverage for much of that trip is marginal at best, there are going to two cars on the trip so im hoping we can use the radios to stay in touch along the way and god forbid in case of an emergency. 

 

Adam


Icom IC-F21


#14 Guest_spd641_*

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 06:41 AM

William,

 

Thanks i just got them on friday and i waiting for the charger to show...but i am looking for the programing software and a cable. also s one of them is missing the mic/sp dust cover...any idea where to pick up small repair parts? i cant wait to get this show on the road.

 

Thanks,

Adam

Kawamall on eBay has the cables and I bought a boat load of stuff from them with no problems and I can help you with the software.If you have a yahoo account join this group  http://groups.yahoo....roup/IcomRadio/ and the software is in the file section if not I have original software I can share with you and I will look around for the cover you want.I sold a bunch of those a few yrs ago and they all went to speaker mics and may still have those covers...William



#15 walkabout

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 11:19 PM

so i got them charged up the software installed just waiting for the cable..i have no idea how they are set up but i did test them the sound great going from the front to the back yard on of them makes a steady for for just a second when i power up...i'll post more as i know more.


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#16 walkabout

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Posted 08 October 2013 - 11:43 PM

David,

i got the cable and started playing around the the programming and finally got an opportunity to test them out. i set up one of the channels as gmrs talk around/simplex and put one in my car and one it the wife's car. we ended up getting some pretty good separation between on on parallel streets that separated  farther away from each as we traveled with lots of obstructions between us..there was only a brief moment that we lost contact. but as i turned onto a street that would intersect the one she was on we again had radio contact. i followed her the rest of the way home keeping my distance we always had a very clear signal. not having any previous experience at all. this has been a great great resource, but i feel like i have so much more to learn. These are going to work perfect for what i was wanting them for, i can hardly wait to try them out in the mountains. Im also studying for my tech license. i can see myself with a dual band gps/aprs radio in the near future. in the mean time these radios will teach me plenty..thanks William


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#17 Guest_spd641_*

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 06:01 AM

You welcome,I am glad you are enjoying the radios.I thought you might like them,you will be surprised at the range in the rural areas...William



#18 walkabout

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 12:56 AM

William, can you recommend a good tech study guide.


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#19 Billy

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 06:51 AM

Go to the ARRL website and get their study guide.  I not only comes with a good book it comes with a exam disk that contains questions, the exact questions that are on the exam.  This will cover you for both Tech and General.   I think the cost is like $40.   Makes the test a walk in the park. 



#20 walkabout

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 08:07 AM

Thanks Billy. i kind of have my eye on one a Kenwood TH-D72A. I have to do some more research o it to see if it can display UTM grid coordinates as well (not a deal braker though) . it does a lot of stuff that i don't understand yet but the kinds of activities that I'm involved in it seems like the perfect fit. or a radio similar to the Kenwood. i currently carry and hand held GPS with me all the time when I'm out, being able to have a GPS and a radio in the same package would be perfect..


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