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Programming a TK880

programming TK800 programming cable

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#1 WREM441

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 06:19 PM

Hello Everyone, I'm James, WREM441, and I'm new to GMRS. I stopped by the NGGMRS booth at a local hamfest and after talking to the very kind folks I decided to "take the plunge". I'm also a ham, KF4AQO. I've ordered a programming cable. I haven't ordered the Kenwood KPG-49D programming software hoping that CHIRP will work. 

There is my short history regarding GMRS. Here's the question, which programming software do I need to program my TK-880 radios?

Thanks.

Oh, I've almost completed my base station antenna. I'll be on the air once that's completed.



#2 WRAK968

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 11:03 PM

Depending on the firmware, the KPG-49D should be what you need. There is a firmware that requires passport software. This can be determined by watching the screen as you turn on the radio. If you have firmware 1.5xxx chances are you have passport firmware. This is easily fixed by reflashing the newest firmware through Fpro which is included with the 49D software. As far as I am aware (And I may be wrong on this) the 880's are incompatible with CHiRP.

I think I got my 49D from hamfiles for free. If you have an account there you should be able to download the file there. If you need the firmware feel free to message me and I'll send it over.


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#3 RCM

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Posted 15 November 2019 - 03:41 AM

Congrats on getting the best radio out there for GMRS!

Chirp won't work. It would be great if it were added at some point, but KPG49D is readily available free, and works well. Look for version 4.xx for Windows. I have a Windows 10 machine and it works fine except for the help files, which you don't necessarily need anyway. I originally started with Version 6.xx, thinking the later version would be better. But nope, it was DOS only.

 

Once you have the software, it will also work (with a different cable) on the TK-380 uhf HT.

 

And btw, the TK-880 can be easily programmed with freqs down to 440 or maybe even lower. The software will warn you that it's out of range, but it will accept it. Most radios are deaf below 446 or so though, and the vco also loses lock. There are a couple of simple adjustments to make it work down there while not sacrificing operation up to 470.

The TK-380 works on 440 without needing any adjustments.

 

Welcome to the forum.


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#4 kipandlee

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Posted 15 November 2019 - 07:49 AM

link to software https://hamfiles.co....d-kpg-49d-rss_2           the TK-880 s are great radios welcome to the forum


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#5 WREM441

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Posted 17 November 2019 - 07:44 PM

Thanks for the help and link. I'll give it try. I have ordered a cable and should be here this week. I'll keep you posted.


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#6 WRAM373 - Richard

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Posted 24 November 2019 - 09:01 PM

Welcome, James! Were you able to attend the presentation NGGMRS gave on Saturday morning at the Stone Mountain Hamfest?
- Richard | KJ4ZTY | WRAM373

#7 WREM441

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Posted 24 November 2019 - 09:48 PM

Yes I was. I found it informative. I'm still working on an external antenna; I hope to complete it within the next couple of days so I can get on the air.

Also, I'm still looking for a computer program to program radios.



#8 RCM

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 09:52 PM

Yes I was. I found it informative. I'm still working on an external antenna; I hope to complete it within the next couple of days so I can get on the air.

Also, I'm still looking for a computer program to program radios.

The link posted above is correct for the TK-880.


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#9 ChrisL

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Posted 26 November 2019 - 12:35 PM

Can the TK880 be programmed to use lower transmit power using the software?

Thanks



#10 RCM

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Posted 26 November 2019 - 12:47 PM

Can the TK880 be programmed to use lower transmit power using the software?

Thanks

Yes.



#11 WREM441

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 08:49 PM

I appreciate the help I've received thus far. I have working programming software. I ordered a cable but it didn't work even though the radio model was listed in the description. If you have a programming cable that works with the programming software, please share the model/type/etc. of the cable so I can buy one.

Thanks.



#12 RCM

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 09:41 PM

It takes a KPG-46. Here is the one I bought, and the seller I bought it from: https://www.ebay.com...nkAAOSwytJaBd~n

 

I've programmed TK-880s, TK-780 and TK-981s with it. Works perfectly. BlueMax49ers stands behind his cables, too.

 

If you ever decide to get a TK-981 (which I recommend because there are some on ebay now for about the same price as TK-880s) and avail yourself of the 900 MHz repeaters that are in your area, that software and cable will program them too.

There is also a really good network of GMRS repeaters in your area, which I'm sure you are already aware.


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#13 Jones

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 10:05 AM

I appreciate the help I've received thus far. I have working programming software. I ordered a cable but it didn't work even though the radio model was listed in the description. If you have a programming cable that works with the programming software, please share the model/type/etc. of the cable so I can buy one.

Thanks.

 

Make sure you have the software set for the correct COM port on your computer, or it will not work.  You may need to go into the computer's hardware manager to determine what COM port is assigned to that cable, but it will likely not be the COM-1 port that the software will try to use by default.  Some of my programming cables come up as COM-3, and at least one comes up as COM-5 on my programming computer.  The software must be set to the correct port to match the cable.  It will not find it automatically.


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#14 WREM441

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 12:45 PM

Thank you Jones. Actually, I didn't get that far. The folders on the install CD that came with the cable didn't have my model listed. The closest model, if I recall, was TK780. I tried this one because TK880 wasn't listed. I tried various folders/programs but none worked.

Any suggestions?

Thank again.



#15 WRAK968

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 01:42 PM

Thank you Jones. Actually, I didn't get that far. The folders on the install CD that came with the cable didn't have my model listed. The closest model, if I recall, was TK780. I tried this one because TK880 wasn't listed. I tried various folders/programs but none worked.

Any suggestions?

Thank again.

780 and 880 are basically the same radio and software, just one is VHF and one UHF. When you install the program, go to Model-Model Information. This will open a small window.

Under Model Type, Select TK880 Mobile
Frequency should be K (450-490)
Format you want Conventional
Options, If you have an ANI board you can select it, Scrambler is not needed.

Now the software is set for the 880 and will let you enter UHF frequencies into it :)

Also note, the same software does the 981 (900 mhz radio) Just select that model radio and your set. Im not sure how the 900 MHz stuff works though as it only seems to let me select "trunking" so you'll need to ask someone else for that. Also if you get an error message about the radio software, and when you turn the radio on you get version 1.5xxxx let me know and Ill send you the correct firmware. Some radios were updated to passport which the kenwood software doesnt like at all. Any other questions feel free to ask :)

 


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#16 RCM

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 10:03 PM

780 and 880 are basically the same radio and software, just one is VHF and one UHF. When you install the program, go to Model-Model Information. This will open a small window.

Under Model Type, Select TK880 Mobile
Frequency should be K (450-490)
Format you want Conventional
Options, If you have an ANI board you can select it, Scrambler is not needed.

Now the software is set for the 880 and will let you enter UHF frequencies into it :)

Also note, the same software does the 981 (900 mhz radio) Just select that model radio and your set. Im not sure how the 900 MHz stuff works though as it only seems to let me select "trunking" so you'll need to ask someone else for that. Also if you get an error message about the radio software, and when you turn the radio on you get version 1.5xxxx let me know and Ill send you the correct firmware. Some radios were updated to passport which the kenwood software doesnt like at all. Any other questions feel free to ask :)

 

Yeah, the 981 has to be set to trunking but you can add conventional channels within that format. You also theoretically have to hex edit to get it into the ham band; fortunately however there is a ham .dat file that you can dump in there as a package that includes all of the ham freqs. Then you can go in and edit to add the tx and rx tones you need. Even simpler than programming an 880 once you get your head around it.



#17 WREM441

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 10:10 PM

780 and 880 are basically the same radio and software, just one is VHF and one UHF. When you install the program, go to Model-Model Information. This will open a small window.

Under Model Type, Select TK880 Mobile
Frequency should be K (450-490)
Format you want Conventional
Options, If you have an ANI board you can select it, Scrambler is not needed.

Now the software is set for the 880 and will let you enter UHF frequencies into it :)

Also note, the same software does the 981 (900 mhz radio) Just select that model radio and your set. Im not sure how the 900 MHz stuff works though as it only seems to let me select "trunking" so you'll need to ask someone else for that. Also if you get an error message about the radio software, and when you turn the radio on you get version 1.5xxxx let me know and Ill send you the correct firmware. Some radios were updated to passport which the kenwood software doesnt like at all. Any other questions feel free to ask :)

Great info - thanks a lot - I'll try this tomorrow. I'll keep you posted.



#18 WRAK968

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 10:43 AM

Yeah, the 981 has to be set to trunking but you can add conventional channels within that format. You also theoretically have to hex edit to get it into the ham band; fortunately however there is a ham .dat file that you can dump in there as a package that includes all of the ham freqs. Then you can go in and edit to add the tx and rx tones you need. Even simpler than programming an 880 once you get your head around it.


Cool, I also heard there is a section of the 900Mhz band that doesnt need a license, however I cant seem to get anymore info on it. My googlefu sucks so perhaps you have some info?



#19 RCM

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 02:20 PM

Cool, I also heard there is a section of the 900Mhz band that doesnt need a license, however I cant seem to get anymore info on it. My googlefu sucks so perhaps you have some info?

Part 15; same 902-928 as the amateur radio band but at very low power and cannot interfere with any other service (including ham radio). Maximum field strength of 50 uV/M at 3M which is probably about 50-100 milliwatts. Some cordless phones use 902-928. Best way to stay out of trouble is to use the middle of the band since most ham radio use is in the top and bottom 1 MHz.

https://www.law.corn.../text/47/15.249

 

I've seen comments on Youtube and elsewhere to the effect that anyone can just get a 900 MHz mobile or handheld radio and legally start transmitting without a license. That is completely untrue.


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