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Midland MXT400


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#1 WRCP828

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Posted 07 March 2019 - 06:26 AM

Spoke to Midland yesterday who indicated that the above will be replaced with 2 new units...a 50 watt unit and a 25 watt unit.  They are looking into the inability of the MXT400 receiving on wide band via repeaters that will avoid audio clipping on receive.  Timing for the 2 new units unknown right now.


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#2 Elkhunter521

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Posted 07 March 2019 - 12:05 PM

I hope they "FIX" the issue of not being able to choose different pl tones for tx and rx. That should be a firmware change.
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Be vewy vewy quiet.
I'm listening to my wadio!

#3 grumpycasper

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Posted 07 March 2019 - 05:39 PM

Well that's not good, just bought a MXT400 and still in the box. Guess I need to take it back to Wally World for a refund. Thanks for the info WRCP828



#4 Elkhunter521

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Posted 07 March 2019 - 07:31 PM

I wish I could send mine back. Pastor Gary commented that one should research what your buying first. Worse part is I know that.

Keith T
Be vewy vewy quiet.
I'm listening to my wadio!

#5 Cobalt

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 11:49 AM

I'm stuck with two MXT400! One in the truck is useless for repeaters because of low volume. Base station works ok if I turn the volume all the way up. We will see what kind of company Midland is.

 

Jeff P.



#6 WRCP828

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Posted 15 March 2019 - 10:53 AM

You know the answer.

 

BTW I have one of their antennas (6db gain) on a mag mount in the house.  Last week I was inadvertently running high power 40 watts on the MXT 400 and noticed the antenna was bent.   Felt the antenna and it was warm to hot. The RF from transmitting melted the center loading coil and now the antenna is permanently bent ...about a 45 degree angle.  The antenna is rated for high power and is sold with the rig in a combo pack.

 

Any recommendations on antenna to use in the house.  Thinking about J Pole from Ed Fong.  Anyone see any articles that compare performance of GMRS antennas?

 

Thanks.

 

Pete



#7 Ian

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Posted 15 March 2019 - 07:58 PM

You know the answer.

 

BTW I have one of their antennas (6db gain) on a mag mount in the house.  Last week I was inadvertently running high power 40 watts on the MXT 400 and noticed the antenna was bent.   Felt the antenna and it was warm to hot. The RF from transmitting melted the center loading coil and now the antenna is permanently bent ...about a 45 degree angle.  The antenna is rated for high power and is sold with the rig in a combo pack.

 

Any recommendations on antenna to use in the house.  Thinking about J Pole from Ed Fong.  Anyone see any articles that compare performance of GMRS antennas?

 

Thanks.

 

Pete

‍♂

 

I've heard nothing but good things about the Ed Fong antennas in ham radio chats.

 

Edited to add:  Not sure where the mars symbol came from, but *shrug*

Also, the Ed Fong J Pole is planned to be my garage repeater antenna / home base antenna / whatever I build it's probably also going to include a couple of MURS handhelds, since I already got the hardware, and the Ed Fong gear comes in ham, commercial, and - important for us here - PRS versions; the latter is tuned for MURS and GMRS out of the box.  Only other thing I could wish for is 900 MHz out of it, but EnGenius has their own ground-plane antennas, and they're cheap on eBay frequently.


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#8 Cbarcus

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 01:59 PM

Greetings,

 

Newbe here and looking at buying the Midland MXT400. But after reading, now little shy about the MXT400. Can anyone suggest a better alternative or wait until midland fixes the issue? 

 

Thank you and stay safe

 

Charles.  



#9 marcspaz

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 02:31 PM

They have a second generation available directly from them. The repeater clipping issue has been resolved. I have 3 new ones and they all work very well.

They are still all narrow band. If you want wide band, you will need one from Motorola, iCom, Kenwood, etc.
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#10 RickW

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 06:58 PM

We have two MXT 400's and two MXT 115's plus 2 B-Tech GMRS-V1 and find them reasonably good. These seem to be some of the main off the shelf Part 95E certified choices at the moment that can also work through repeaters. None of the Midland handlie-talkies can use repeaters although I like their use of AA (instead of AAA) batteries and higher power than most other HT's,. but their antennas are unfortunately fixed making them of minimal use for mobile with outside the vehicle antennas.

 

I did use a distant repeater (> 60 miles?) one time under enhanced conditions and the modulation of the 400 seemed fine with no negative comments from the other end. Most people getting involved with GMRS are not going to be buying used Part 90 gear and then having to program them, so I would not want to downplay any product where companies have spent what I suspect might be significant costs to get rigs certified for GMRS. On the other hand, the apparent return of the 400's to the higher price of $250 (instead of $199) seems very high. One thing about Midland is that they may offer you discounts on future purchases of ~ 15%. At least that was my experience.

 

The 115's are really great for temporary installations, or where you do not want to run a connection from the battery for mobile use. They are designed to plug into the cigarette lighter and the tiny quarter wave antenna is not intrusive. But you can easily upgrade to better antennas and as I mentioned in another post, the difference between the various gain antennas from Midland, really made quite a difference for us.

 

I never even knew about repeaters using different PL/DPL tones for input and output as this has never come up with amateur radio repeaters, so that was something I was unprepared for. One concern I do have is that if you use a PL/DPL tones, it works for both TX and RX, so if the repeater did not put out a tone at all, you would have to turn off the squelch for RX. And that means you could not scan. I would strongly suggest that repeaters be more standardized to always use the same tones if at all possible.  Perhaps it is necessary in areas with heavy use and illegal operations, but what about areas with almost zero use? My thinking is kind of the opposite, similar to other radio services, where I would prefer to promote the use.



#11 Elkhunter521

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Posted 16 April 2019 - 03:13 PM

Hi all,
After another conversation with a Midland engineer, who is reportably responsible for the Midland XMT program, something became obvious. Midland has sold a bunch of frs/gmrs bubblepack radios (now renamed as frs radios)

Midland designed their mobile radios to be completely compatible with their bubble pack radios.

All their bubble packs are narrow band. To continue compatibility their mobiles are also.

Their bubble packs use same pl tones for tx and rx. Again so do their mobiles.

When I asked their engineer why, He said that was what GMRS was for.

I believe they added the repeater function as an afterthought, rather than a major selling point.

Hey, I might be wrong............nah, dont think so.
 


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Be vewy vewy quiet.
I'm listening to my wadio!

#12 Elkhunter521

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Posted 16 April 2019 - 05:15 PM

.
Be vewy vewy quiet.
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#13 taco6513

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Posted 16 April 2019 - 05:48 PM

I have a mxt400 I purchased maybe 60 days ago. Seems to talk just fine over my repeater. I have 2 more new ones in the box. Took one out today. The mics are different. Is there a number on the box or radio that tells me the clipping thing has been fixed? The newer firmware. WRCW870.

#14 marcspaz

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Posted 16 April 2019 - 11:19 PM

I have a mxt400 I purchased maybe 60 days ago. Seems to talk just fine over my repeater. I have 2 more new ones in the box. Took one out today. The mics are different. Is there a number on the box or radio that tells me the clipping thing has been fixed? The newer firmware. WRCW870.

 

The person I spoke to at Midland told me that MXT400's shipped with the mics with a loop instead of a classic button on the back, are the first gen radios.  Upgrading the mic was one of the changes made for the revised radios.

 

I looked at all of my boxes and there is nothing on the packaging the indicates which radio is the newer version.  The firmware is the same, too... still version 1.  The changes were specific to electronic components being replaced.

 

I would think that if you call Midland and give then the serial number, they could tell you with certainty. 



#15 Ian

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Posted 17 April 2019 - 11:35 PM

I wish they stuck with the loops, though.  Their button-holders suck.  They can be relied upon to come unscrewed, the adhesive backing to fail, and they're so thick that replacement mounting tape still can't reliably hold, especially in the Florida heat.  I've been through about three of the buggers, and I'm about ready to switch to neodymium magnets and hot glue.

 

Edit:  I really hope the new units are the handheld-control-head type!



#16 Jones

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Posted 18 April 2019 - 09:20 AM

I wish they stuck with the loops, though.  Their button-holders suck.  They can be relied upon to come unscrewed, the adhesive backing to fail, and they're so thick that replacement mounting tape still can't reliably hold, especially in the Florida heat.  I've been through about three of the buggers, and I'm about ready to switch to neodymium magnets and hot glue.

 

Edit:  I really hope the new units are the handheld-control-head type!

 

Just in case you haven't ever been part of the CB radio world, I might suggest doing a google search for "CB Buddy Hook" as a solution to your microphone holder problems.  You'll find them available online, and at any truck stop.  They come in metal or plastic.  I use these myself. (I prefer the plastic ones)  With one of these clipped onto your mic you can just hook the mic onto your rear-view mirror, or some close control like the wiper/washer knob.



#17 Michael A Martin

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Posted 21 April 2019 - 11:10 AM

Spoke to Midland yesterday who indicated that the above will be replaced with 2 new units...a 50 watt unit and a 25 watt unit. They are looking into the inability of the MXT400 receiving on wide band via repeaters that will avoid audio clipping on receive. Timing for the 2 new units unknown right now.

Hello,

Have you had follow-up with Midland of a potential release time frame for the new radios?

Thank you

Sent from my SM-T550 using Tapatalk

#18 Cobalt

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Posted 21 April 2019 - 02:01 PM

I removed my MXT 400 from my truck yesterday. The volume is so low on repeaters I can't hear anyone. I noticed it has the loop on the mic and the one I have for a base has the button witch from what I  understand is the newer of the two models. Both work the same as far as volume is concerned on repeaters and never noticed any clipping out of either one of them. I installed the unit from my truck in my Polaris Ranger for off-road use at Badlands. I'm very disappointed in Midland to charge that much for a radio that performs that bad.

Jeff P.

WRCV497 



#19 marcspaz

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Posted 21 April 2019 - 10:45 PM

I have a similar issue, only with all audio, not just repeaters. All of my MXT400s have very low volume from the internal speaker. But, only with received audio. If I crack the squelch open... that seems to be capable of being ridiculously loud.

I bought a few 20 watt MFJ external box speakers which work great. For a few dollars, it may be worth seeing if there is an improvement for you.
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#20 n4gix

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Posted 22 April 2019 - 11:52 AM

Since the vast majority of GMRS radios and repeaters are wide-band, the Midland unit's restriction to narrow-band only does result in lower volume since they are only detecting one half of the frequency modulated signal.

 

The same is true in reverse as well of course... :wacko:


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