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Issues with BTech GMRS V1


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#1 RickW

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 11:55 AM

I have had a couple of BTech GMRS V1 HT's for a year and they seemed OK and work well with our Midland MXT 115's and MXT 400's. Just before the warranty ran out I noticed that one of the units had a dead battery, even though the power switch had been off. I charged it back up and noticed that over a three day period it drained the battery with the switch off. Thinking the battery was defective, I put in a warranty RMS and was just about to send it back when I got to thinking that maybe it wasn't the battery, but maybe it was somehow drawing current when off. So I set up a current flow test between the batter and rig and sure enough there was a continuous 15 ma. discharge. So I got another RMS and sent both the unit and the battery to BTech. They replaced both in short order.

 

Then I discovered that the replacement unit did not have the FM radio receive function. I actually find this useful as another use for the radio. Upon contacting BTech, they indicated that I needed to enable the function with CHIRP. I ordered the cable and it turns out that the FM function is enabled, so something else is defective. I wrote to them several times but they are not very good about responding but finally asked me to request another RMA. I tried that but by then the warranty period had run out and the system would not let me request an RMA due to being out of warranty. So I again asked them about this and they said to "edit the date on the RMA." 

 

It costs around $7 or so to mail these units to BTech and I am considering just living with the disabled FM function. Hopefully no other problems exist that I have not noticed, but it has been disappointing. 

 

I am thinking that it is possible that this replacement unit may have a physical issue with the button not engaging the internal switch that switches the FM function but I am hesitant to disassemble it.

 

Has anyone else had a problem like this?  And/or has anyone tried taking one of these units apart? 

 

Thanks for any help.

 

Rick



#2 Logan5

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 01:42 PM

did you simply view the entry in chirp to confirm the radio function, or did you disable and then re enable the FM function? It's worth a shot.


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#3 BoxCar

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 05:31 PM

I would also write the  changes to the radio after each change with CHIRP. Disconnect the radio fro your PC and cycle power on the radio before reconnecting to switch the feature again.


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Old and wise infers you were once young and stupid


#4 rodro123

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 08:38 AM

I ordered 2 BTech GMRS V1 from amazon. Both were defective both were sent back. I replaced them with 2 BF-F8HP ordered from Amazon also ordered a Surecom SW-102 Meter. By metering both found one at high power at 4.3 watts and the other at 5.1 watts. This time I sent back to BTech now waiting to receive them back. But the good news is that if I get them back still not up to close to 8 watts I’m still under the 30 day return to Amazon till Jan 31 2020.



#5 RickW

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 01:53 PM

I tried making the aforementioned resetting to no avail. It is getting more difficult to recommend these units as I had hoped they would have better QC.



#6 Logan5

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 05:00 PM

I ordered 2 BTech GMRS V1 from amazon. Both were defective both were sent back. I replaced them with 2 BF-F8HP ordered from Amazon also ordered a Surecom SW-102 Meter. By metering both found one at high power at 4.3 watts and the other at 5.1 watts. This time I sent back to BTech now waiting to receive them back. But the good news is that if I get them back still not up to close to 8 watts I’m still under the 30 day return to Amazon till Jan 31 2020.

5.1 watt is good on UHF, they only preform at anything close to 8 watts on VHF,


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#7 berkinet

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 06:28 PM

... By metering both found one at high power at 4.3 watts and the other at 5.1 watts....

 

 

As speced by Baofng Tech: High/Med/Low Power Settings on UHF Are 7/4/1 watts respectively. Are you sure you had the radio on high power with a fully charged battery?


Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.

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#8 rodro123

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 09:17 PM

Oh yes it was on high and fully charged. The reading were correct just two bad units.



#9 rodro123

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 09:21 PM

I would like to buy a mobile unit for my truck that can do 30-50 watt what should I buy? The complete set up.  I'm only able to do GMRS keep in mind



#10 Downs

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 09:04 AM

Midland, and Btech both have options in that power range.

You can also find Kenwood TK880H that will do 40 watts.

Im running a 25 watt Motorola PM400 but they make a 40 watt version of that as well.

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A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)


#11 Logan5

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 04:10 PM

I would like to buy a mobile unit for my truck that can do 30-50 watt what should I buy? The complete set up.  I'm only able to do GMRS keep in mind

Why so much power? Do you really know how much power you actually need? Blasting the airwaves with more power than you need should be avoided. Maybe a quality gain antenna properly installed and that 5.1 watt radio will do the job. anything more would just be noise for other users.


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#12 Downs

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 04:27 PM

Why so much power? Do you really know how much power you actually need? Blasting the airwaves with more power than you need should be avoided. Maybe a quality gain antenna properly installed and that 5.1 watt radio will do the job. anything more would just be noise for other users.

True. Even on my radios with 50 watt settings i rarely run that power level. I certainly dont feel "undergunned" running my 25 watt PM400. Even on that radio i typically run on "low" power which i have programed as 5 watts.

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A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)


#13 marcspaz

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 04:44 PM

Agreed.  On field testing, mobile to mobile, bumping the power from 5 watts to 50 watts only netted an additional 1/4 mile.  That's it. 

 

The only time I can see any benefit to boosting power is in a flat-out life or death emergency and you are trying to increase the odds of someone/anyone hearing you.  And even then, if your in a bad spot, it wont matter how much power you're running.


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#14 gman1971

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 10:52 PM

Yep, Marc is right. Unfortunately my experience with more power is even bleaker than Marc's experience, b/c for me, going from 5 to 50 on GMRS netted zero additional miles, yep, you heard that right: nada, zip, zero.... which pretty much proves what Marc's post stated: "If your in a bad spot, it won't matter how much power you're running."

 

May I ask what is it that you're trying to do? A Base to Mobile? Base to Portable? Mobile to Portable? Portable to Portable?

 

Also, for whatever is worth, as a former Baofeng addict, always running on Baofeng budgets, etc, always mesmerized by their fancy color screens and pretty LEDs, etc; I had to get out of that trend of thought and buy higher quality (with no color screens, nor fancy and useless bells and whistles) commercial grade Vertex Standard radios, which draw rings around the BTech stuff where it matters: in the RF performance department... with tighter receivers (key factor) that won't desense in high RF environments, which nowadays is pretty much anywhere near a city larger than 500 souls population....

 

G.


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#15 axorlov

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 10:41 PM

In my experience, boosting power from 4W handheld to 40W mobile increases the distance 2-3 times. From 0.5-1 miles to 2-5 miles. My guess is that it has a lot to do with terrain. My real life use is in the Sierra Nevada foothills, in the canyons, with a very little vegetation. 65cm waves seem to reflect quite well from the rocky surface. Power boost makes the reflected waves go further. My real life example is in Pinnacles National Park, where I can easily contact HT-to-Mobile between the East side and West side. Over the air distance is is about 2 miles. This is not possible with HT-to-HT.

In fact, TK-880H (40W) parked at the West parking lot hears pretty much from all the Pinnacles (spare the caves) and can reach HTs at the same distance (40W rules!).



#16 Downs

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 11:04 PM

In my experience, boosting power from 4W handheld to 40W mobile increases the distance 2-3 times. From 0.5-1 miles to 2-5 miles. My guess is that it has a lot to do with terrain. My real life use is in the Sierra Nevada foothills, in the canyons, with a very little vegetation. 65cm waves seem to reflect quite well from the rocky surface. Power boost makes the reflected waves go further. My real life example is in Pinnacles National Park, where I can easily contact HT-to-Mobile between the East side and West side. Over the air distance is is about 2 miles. This is not possible with HT-to-HT.
In fact, TK-880H (40W) parked at the West parking lot hears pretty much from all the Pinnacles (spare the caves) and can reach HTs at the same distance (40W rules!).

This.probably has more to do with the antenna advantage mobiles have over HTs than the power boost.

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A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)


#17 marcspaz

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 12:21 AM

Agreed.  HT antennas use your body as a counterpoise.

 

I'll start a new thread about this so I don't completely derail this one.


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#18 RCM

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 11:50 AM

Agreed.  HT antennas use your body as a counterpoise.

 

I'll start a new thread about this so I don't completely derail this one.

That's true on vhf and below, and with miniature radios on uhf. But a TK-380 for example is 5-1/4 inches long with an aluminum chassis, so that's very close to a full quarterwave counterpoise. In fact since it has a large cross-sectional area, it probably has enough bandwidth to actually be a full quarterwave electrically.


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#19 Downs

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 04:21 PM

The roof or hood or trunk of a car makes a far better ground plane than a body.

Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk

A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)





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