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Anytone AT-578UV thoughts


gman1971
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Hey guys, I just ordered this radio replace a lost radio.

 

Don't have it yet but I've been doing a lot of reading and research over the past few months (radio is been delayed time after time) and it looks like it has a fairly decent hybrid receiver, the 1st stage seems to be a superhet and the 2nd stage is a direct conversion. According to ppl who've tested it it has pretty good selectivity and fairly decent sensitivity, along with a myriad of options, including two receivers, crossband repeat (all modes, DMR/FM or FM/FM or DMR/DMR), single frequency repeater for DMR, bluetooth, etc.... 

 

Does anybody have any thoughts? have you guys tried this radio?

 

G.

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Got the radio today, genuinely impressed with it. It is certainly a huge step up from the AT-878 I tested (and returned). I would say its closer to Hytera territory in terms of RF performance; except this one is a tribander (rather than a single band radio). I think the specs printed on the brochure, based on quick testing, appear to be worse what the radio is capable of: Sensitivity is probably closer to the 0.16uV @ 12dB SINAD mark than the advertised 0.25 uV @ 12dB SINAD. It also doesn't seem to be hammered as bad as the TM-V71a on VHF with intermod, and the NOAA station that pops in and out of whatever channel I am parked at on the TM-v71a doesn't seem to be an issue with this radio, so that is huge. I will bench this radio vs the EVX-5300, hopefully tomorrow, so I can see how well it receives.

 

So, it has true dual receive, crossband repeat, and a single frequency repeater in DMR... which is awesome, so you can use a single frequency to link multiple radios... nifty little toy. You can have the audio come from the microphone, rather than the radio body, which is very nice too. So for my velomobile I can hide the radio and just leave the microphone. I will probably link the radio to my helmet Senna Bluetooth intercom, see how well it works. (haven't tried that yet)

 

Radio is fairly small, when compared to the XPR5550e this thing is a little radio; while not as short as the EVX-5300, its about the same width and height. fan is dead silent. No faceplate relocation kit as of yet, but it seems it might be coming since its just a ribbon cable with a small GPS micro coax connector, similar to the XPR radios. The included Bluetooth PTT is super nice, but requires disabling the single frequency repeater, not sure if this will change down the road. In my TYT8000E the Crossband repeater mode allows for using the radio as well, so not sure why the radio won't transmit on the band its selected.

 

There were a couple of bugs on the software that crashed to desktop, but other than that, the software seems to work well, wish it was as versatile as the Vertex CE142 CPS for some of the input stuff. I had the codeplug made from the 878 I tested (and returned) a few months ago.

 

I changed the band mode to allow for GMRS operation, with no front panel programming, nor VFO. Want to keep this like a commercial radio.  However, if need be I can re-enable that functionality back with the software, but needs a PC to do that.

 

For GMRS is probably a bit overkill, but for ham and/or commercial usage its a great radio. Wish it had airband too, and there is room in the PCB for a third receiver, which is unimplemented ATM, but when that happens I will be selling both my TM-v71A radios... listening to airband is the only reason why I am keeping those Kenwoods around. Being able to hear all the Mototrbo traffic from nearby business in both VHF and UHF is super cool; can't do that with the TM-v71a anymore... most of the stuff I hear around my house is all DMR these days... 

 

G.

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Well, the lack of relocation kit certainly has thwarted my install efforts today. The radio is just pretty darn long, so I couldn't install it where I wanted, over the pedals column, so I'll have to think a little harder where I am going to install it... We'll see... so now I can see why ppl are turned off about not having a front panel relocation kit on this radio... hopefully it can be done.

 

G.

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Well, depending on how daring and capable with tools you are, you might want to just open the radio up and see what exactly connects the front section to the rest of the radio. It could be just a simple ribbon cable, or it could be a myriad of wires. If it is a ribbon cable or similar you might be in luck. Of course, you would still have to rig up some cover for the back part of the radio and something to cover the back of the face plate portion. if you do open the radio, please post pictures of the inside. Good luck.

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Hmmm...  if the photo below (from radioaficion.com) is accurate, the  control head is connected to the body with a 20 conductor ribbon cable. And, the part of the body that mates with the control head seems to have some sort of a bulkhead. You might just be in luck. Of course, there might be all kinds of RF issues if you lengthen the ribbon cable. But still...

 

 

http://radioaficion.com/cms/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/AT-D578UV_teardown-3.jpg

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I really think its above my skill to tinker with... making the connector, and 3D print the caps to bolt onto the radio and faceplate (ala 4550/5550 motos) without damaging the radio...  I guess the radio might get hot? I rarely, if ever, have ran it in Turbo (50W UHF) (usually 1 Watt is enough to hit the Madison 700 repeater around here) so there is zero need to run any of the higher settings, let alone full power.

 

 

G.

 

 

Hmmm...  if the photo below (from radioaficion.com) is accurate, the  control head is connected to the body with a 20 conductor ribbon cable. And, the part of the body that mates with the control head seems to have some sort of a bulkhead. You might just be in luck. Of course, there might be all kinds of RF issues if you lengthen the ribbon cable. But still...

 

 

http://radioaficion.com/cms/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/AT-D578UV_teardown-3.jpg

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Got to try the radio on Madison 700 just now. On just 1 watt, good reports so far. Love the fact that Low is 1 watt, mid is 10W, high is 25W and Turbo is 50W... the 1 W option is great. I can also use the 10dB attenuator and bring it down even further if need be... so far no issues with the radio...

 

Ideally you'd want to convert the ribbon cable to a parallel port, or something, similar to how the Motorola XPR mobiles work... not sure if that can be easily done. :) Certainly a relocation kit would work wonders for my application on a velomobile where space is at a premium... :)

 

 

G.

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...Ideally you'd want to convert the ribbon cable to a parallel port, or something, similar to how the Motorola XPR mobiles work... not sure if that can be easily done. ...

 

Are you suggesting a 20 pin connector? Or, do you really mean creating your own parallel interface? If you mean the latter, well I would be fairly sure that what you suggest cannot be done easily. On the other hand, if you just want connectors on the radio and control head, that should be pretty simple. I'd use two short ribbon cables at the body and head. One end connected to the respective unit, and the other terminated in a standard 20-pin female ribbon connector. Then just make a ribbon cable of the length you want and terminate it with a 20-pin male connector at each end.

 http://www.pacificcable.com/photos/IDE20.jpghttp://www.pacificcable.com/photos/IDH20.jpg

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Ideally one would hope that eventually Anytone will add the necessary parts to multiplex at the chassis end and demultiplex at the control head end, and ditch the ribbon cable entirely, replacing it with a bog-standard CAT5 or CAT6 cable.

 

This is how my TYT7800, CS800D, and FT-857 radio's remote system works.

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Something like that, basically the ribbon plugs onto something like that, and then the cable extends to the faceplate... The XPR radios do it like that.

 

Are you suggesting a 20 pin connector? Or, do you really mean creating your own parallel interface? If you mean the latter, well I would be fairly sure that what you suggest cannot be done easily. On the other hand, if you just want connectors on the radio and control head, that should be pretty simple. I'd use two short ribbon cables at the body and head. One end connected to the respective unit, and the other terminated in a standard 20-pin female ribbon connector. Then just make a ribbon cable of the length you want and terminate it with a 20-pin male connector at each end.

 http://www.pacificcable.com/photos/IDE20.jpghttp://www.pacificcable.com/photos/IDH20.jpg

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My TM-V71a uses Cat5 as well... who knows why they did it this way... probably cheaper... but at 390 is not really that cheap...

 

G.

 

 

 

Ideally one would hope that eventually Anytone will add the necessary parts to multiplex at the chassis end and demultiplex at the control head end, and ditch the ribbon cable entirely, replacing it with a bog-standard CAT5 or CAT6 cable.

 

This is how my TYT7800, CS800D, and FT-857 radio's remote system works.

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Yep. good radios, I've had those for almost 7 years now... , just the lack of digital decoding rendered them almost useless for listening to the local LMR DMR traffic; now, while there are plenty of Ham repeaters, that's about it tho... pretty much the analog sunset is taken over the LMR frequencies... even the police, used to be KAZ666, VHF FM.... now P25... can't tune in anymore... might get a scanner but... 

 

G.

 

I keep my TM-V71A here in my shack, with it's old papa the TM-V7A sitting on top of it. I have the separation kits for both radios, but they aren't needed here on my desk.

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After a few days of tinkering with the radio I've found its pretty decent, but the digital repeater has a lot of limitations, either crossband or single frequency. The regular FM crossband seems to work just fine tho. Maybe a future firmware upgrade will address such limitations, I don't know...

 

The biggest issues is that when in pure digital repeater mode, the DMR messages used for call alert, or radio check, or get GPS position, etc, won't be rebroadcast like they are when using a regular Mototrbo repeater. While this is a little bit of a negative, especially if you're trying to test radio range and no bother someone else with a myriad of "do you copy me now" etc... but it works well with just digital voice. I also found that compared to the Mototrbo repeaters there is a small delay between keying and hearing, so if you like to speak quick, there is a chance the listener might lose the first 1/2 second of your transmission...

 

One thing is for certain, tho, its cheaper and smaller than a Mototrbo repeater, and if I am having trouble fitting this radio inside my velomobile, I certainly won't be able to ever fit an full XPR8300/8400 inside either, plus the battery required to power one those would be ridiculous... 

 

Overall the radio seems to work fairly well. Maybe given the small shortcomings the radio should be closer to 300 than it is to 400, but then again, given all the features it packs, it is not a bad radio.

 

G.

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Finally got the radio installed on the velomobile. Had to put it on the back, behind the seat bulkhead, and I had to make a cutout with a transparent piece of Lexan so I can see the display, but only when I am out of the velo. Its not really that big of a deal, really, since I rarely, if ever, like to mess with the radio when I am riding around, on a velomobile you need both hands on the steering, and if EV powered like mine, you really need BOTH hands.... However, with that said, I am really looking forward to this separation Bluetooth head unit... we shall see. Never thought I'd put an Anytone as my velomobile radio, but I have to admit the fact that no other radio made by any other manufacturer offers what this radio offers. Shame it doesn't have AM airband, but oh well.. it is what it is. :)

 

BTW, the microphone pinout on this radio doesn't seem to be compatible with any of the other Anytone mobile radios, so I can't really use a repeater controller to do a GMRS to GMRS repeater with a cheap BF-888S for the input side... 

 

G.

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UPDATED (1/24/2020)

 

So, found a bunch of bugs when actually using the radio. I sent an email to Anytone, and posted a review on Amazon in hopes they get resolved, I am basically copying my review here as well:

 

"Love the radio, for the most part..., and when it works, that is. Aside from the lack of separation for the head unit, which can be overcome with some mounting shenanigans, when the radio works its pretty good.

 
Receiver performance is far superior to the 878 or MD5, it seems to pick things where the Alinco MD5 won't even break the squelch.
 
As a standalone unit the radio works fairly well, provided you don't use the Bluetooth or the BT PTT... et all.
 
So, why 1 star then?
 
Simple, the features that make this radio stand out don't work all the time, or consistently, and when this happens there isn't much you can do to fix that and frustration sets in. 
 
The list of issues I've run into so far are: (firmware 1.05)
-Bluetooth will stop transmitting voice after paired for a few minutes without a transmission. As in, radio will transmit, you speak into your Senna headset microphone but no voice will be heard on the other end. Upon pairing it works like a charm.
-Bluetooth won't automatically reconnect if the headset is turned off, then back on. (LAME) Need to power the radio down and then back up. 
-Bluetooth PTT won't reconnect automatically after powering up unless you explicitly go into the menus to connect it. (LAME)
-Crossband DMR repeat will stop working after radio is been sitting idle for 1/2 hour or so.  (WHT?) Need to take the radio out of Crossband mode, then toggle it back on.
-Crossband DMR won't transmit back on A when Band A is selected, the active band needs to be B in order to be a true two way crossband that receives on B and transmits on A, and vice versa.
-Crossband DMR won't pass get GPS position, call-alert, or radio check, etc, type of messages, like a DMR repeater should, so if you are using two 878s one in VHF and another on UHF, with the 578 set to crossband mode, neither of the 878s will be able to perform range measurements within each other, radio checks, etc... that is pretty significant missing functionality.
-Crossband DMR won't pass private calls both ways, only band B to A, but no A to B.
-Crossband DMR no SMS will go through at all.
-In Crossband mode you can't TX by keying up the microphone PTT. My TYT 8000E radio can do this.
-No option to turn off the screen from the menus, or a time out. (How so?)
-PA and PD are hardcoded to some function, and no matter what you set in the CPS, you can't use those two buttons.
-No speed dial with the microphone keypad??? Really?? Even my BF-1801 45 dollar especial has this feature. (LAME)
 
That's all I can remember now, hope these get fixed, if not I'll dump the radio and move on.
 
G.
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Hey axorlov, 115? Its 399: https://www.amazon.com/AnyTone-AT-D578IIIPRO-Tri-Band-Amateur-Bluetooth/dp/B082XK6WYH/ref=sr_1_4?keywords=anytone+at-d578&qid=1579741137&sr=8-4

 

The $115 is the AT-D778, which is not even a digital radio. The 578 is a brand new triband mobile radio (140, 220, 440) FM/DMR, with a very nice double receiver, crossband, single freq repeater, bluetooth, gps....  I think once they fix the teething issues the radio will be a hit. (it seems already like a pretty decent radio anyhow)

 

The single frequency repeater is pretty nice, it works surprisingly well with the Baofeng BF-1801...  it is nice to rebroadcast your own stuff without requiring to use an additional frequency. There are few videos online that show how it works... 

 

G.

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