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Retevis RT76 and RT76P


Ian
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The Retevis RT76 is everything I hoped it would be, and no more.  This pleases me greatly.  What I wanted was a dumb-as-bricks radio I could hand to "limited users" (hereafter, "lusers") with little they could screw up but changing the channel unintentionally and turning the volume too low.  As a result, I am very fond of this radio.  It is … nearly perfect.  Side-button 1 is limited to "alarm" and there's no scan mode I can bind instead; disabling the ability to start transmitting an alarm tone (AKA "jamming signal") with an unintended button press is possible, but it doesn't let you bind a function you want in its place -- and indeed, there is no scan function.  This is the only thing separating this thing from perfection.

 

The Retevis RT76P is… Not so pleasing.  The menu doesn't function as the manual describes, the menu won't let you change wide-narrow in spite of letting you select it; hitting the "confirm" button causes the radio to say "Canceled".  It has a scan function!  But you still can't reprogram SK1 to scan.  Until this thing gets a firmware update, it's hot garbage.  Feels like a Baofeng missing a few buttons, and with worse translation in the menus.  It looks like it had potential, but the potential was squandered.  Still don't regret purchasing it, though; I have a spare charger and battery for my RT76 which I love.  This one… I don't.  Avoid.

 

Edit:  Just tried the programming software.  Instead of flashing the codeplug I just created (not compatible with RT76 codeplugs, natch; this thing has nothing internally in common with the RT76, I'm sure) it unlocked the 2M amateur band and changed the CTCSS on channel 1 to 2100 Hz.  This thing is in dire need of some day-1 DLC.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I purchased one for a friend.  I am disappointed that I cant change DCS codes and CTCSS codes from the radios menu.  I have the same issue with sections "canceling".    I purchased the programing cable and after a lot of trail-and-error was able to program the radio the way I wanted.

 

I have a Wouxun KG-805G that I use daily.  The menus area a lot more simple and straight forward.  Everything in the menus actually functions.  After the price of the Retevis, shipping, and the programing cable, I'd suggest the Wouxun.  It's more but not much more.

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Bought a pair of RT76P units directly from Retevis.  Price was inexpensive at $36 - but the shipping charges added up. The delay time was quite long before they filled the order. Nobody has them in stock stateside.

 

I'm very happy with the unit - 30 channels you can set up any way you like, and since it has a display - you can alpha name the channels - very handy for selecting different repeaters. It'll let you go into a "frequency mode" - where you can receive VHF/UHF frequencies. Pretty easy to use - great for a dedicated GMRS 5W handheld.

 

My potshot guess is that this a a dual-band radio that has custom firmware specifically to limit it's TX capability to GMRS. Couldn't beat the price - $36 bucks.

 

-gene-

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Bought a pair of RT76P units directly from Retevis.  Price was inexpensive at $36 - but the shipping charges added up. The delay time was quite long before they filled the order. Nobody has them in stock stateside.

 

I'm very happy with the unit - 30 channels you can set up any way you like, and since it has a display - you can alpha name the channels - very handy for selecting different repeaters. It'll let you go into a "frequency mode" - where you can receive VHF/UHF frequencies. Pretty easy to use - great for a dedicated GMRS 5W handheld.

 

My potshot guess is that this a a dual-band radio that has custom firmware specifically to limit it's TX capability to GMRS. Couldn't beat the price - $36 bucks.

 

-gene-

 

I got a small batch of them in, but they all sold out (have one left) in only a few days. I placed a larger order so there will be a bunch more coming in. Don't have an ETA yet. 

 

Retevis wasn't even stocking them in their US warehouse yet, so I think I'm the only US dealer for the RT76P at the moment. They sell them on eBay but they're shipping out of China.

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  • 1 month later...

I purchased one for a friend.  I am disappointed that I cant change DCS codes and CTCSS codes from the radios menu.  I have the same issue with sections "canceling".    I purchased the programing cable and after a lot of trail-and-error was able to program the radio the way I wanted.

 

I have a Wouxun KG-805G that I use daily.  The menus area a lot more simple and straight forward.  Everything in the menus actually functions.  After the price of the Retevis, shipping, and the programing cable, I'd suggest the Wouxun.  It's more but not much more.

I change the DCS and CTCSS codes all the time from the front screen on my 76P.

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Here is my review of the 76P. Ergonomically I slightly prefer it over my other radios. It definitely has potential. The problem is the software. It is supposed to be easily programmable through their software and cable. It is not! The password-less software is password protected. Even Retevis customer service does not have the password. I have gone back and forth with CS and they do respond in a timely fashion, but they gave me several passwords to try and they do not work. All I want to do is program channel names into the radio so it is easier for my family to change frequencies. The channel number is tiny and in a corner and hard to see. The GMRS V-1 is light years ahead in programming. The radio itself is good.

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@bulletpoints - since I'm brand new to the world of GMRS I am not sure if updating radios out of the box is noraml like it is with digital computer equipment.  I am hoping to learn if you had to update the firmware when you first purchased your RT76Ps? On mine, I cannot change the CTCSS codes or get the NOAA stations.  So now I am trying to figure out how to to get the NOAA and the Retevis C/S is telling me that I have to update the firmware.  Once I do so, I am told I will be able to change the CTCSS codes and receive the NOAA stations.  However, Retevis tells me that the firmware is not support by iOS and I have no PCs to conduct the update with so I maybe SOL.  I just purchased these from Amazon so maybe it's old stock? But I agree the Customer Support is really responsive and they said they sent out a firmware cable in order to make the update. 

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  • 1 month later...

Retevis RT76p, now you can get the firmware from the website. I emailed them and got a response from “Lucy” the download was not working. From the keypad you can now change the tones. I didn’t check the weather stations; I currently use that button for the scan. You still can’t change the bandwidth and power level from the keypad. I used the software for that and customize my unit. It works like a champ. I’m very happy now. Especially the price.

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Retevis RT76p, now you can get the firmware from the website. I emailed them and got a response from “Lucy” the download was not working. From the keypad you can now change the tones. I didn’t check the weather stations; I currently use that button for the scan. You still can’t change the bandwidth and power level from the keypad. I used the software for that and customize my unit. It works like a champ. I’m very happy now. Especially the price.

 

They're trying to keep the radio part95 E legitimate. If they would let you mess with the bandwidth and/or power level from the keypad - they'd have to add enough smarts to the radio's firmware to properly follow the GMRS/FRS bandwidth and power levels rules depending on the frequency. (It's probably doable - but not likely worth the OEM's time. GMRS is a small market, afterall.)

 

It's way easier to process GMRS rules logic in the CPS software. Basically - everything that would break GMRS rules has been disabled in these radios.

 

That's ok.

 

For those who would like more flexibility in their radios - the simple solution is to upgrade to an amateur license.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Retevis RT76p, now you can get the firmware from the website. I emailed them and got a response from “Lucy” the download was not working. From the keypad you can now change the tones. I didn’t check the weather stations; I currently use that button for the scan. You still can’t change the bandwidth and power level from the keypad. I used the software for that and customize my unit. It works like a champ. I’m very happy noi

Which software and cable did you use?  I got a butt-kickin' with Chirp trying to get it to connect "radio not responding".  Fiddled with it to get it programmed but didn't see many of the options you list.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I ordered a RT76P today. I also inquired into the 20 watt mobile radio which they show for sale but has yet to receive FCC certification. Will see how this goes when I get it.

 

I am also interested in the 97 repeater.

 

I have two GMRS V1 radios which I use on a regular basis as well as a couple Cobra FRS radios and a couple Cobra GMRS handhelds which are several years old. Will see how it goes.

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anyone know how to help revive a bricked rt76p?

 

many thanks to Rich @ mygmrs.com for the solution to my problem. He generously replaced it.

 

regarding the radio... does ok. a new antenna helps but leaves the post vulnerable. you need a deep well sma male or fill in the gap with rubber washers.  replace the antenna by removing the set screw on the base.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I received my radio today.

 

I am able to change the tones through the menu in the radio. I do not have a cable to program for channel names.

 

So far, I have found I can change the bandwidth but it does not stay after I exit that menu.

 

I have only has the radio for a couple hours, so there will be plenty of time to get used to it.

 

I did eliminate the voice and beep as well.

 

Controls are similar to my Btech GMRS V1

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One thing I noticed as well, is that the radio does not like to receive on the mid channels.

 

I have messed with the squelch, tested with my GMRS V1 and my Cobra FRS radios as well. I can transmit, but not receive. I can use the 462 channels as well as the repeater channels and hit all loud and clear and Receive loud and clear.

 

Not sure what it is with 8 to 14.

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Are your CTCSS codes matched up between radios (TX/RX)?  I just tried my 76 with an 805G on Ch. 9 and it worked fine both directions.

 

One thing I noticed as well, is that the radio does not like to receive on the mid channels.

I have messed with the squelch, tested with my GMRS V1 and my Cobra FRS radios as well. I can transmit, but not receive. I can use the 462 channels as well as the repeater channels and hit all loud and clear and Receive loud and clear.

Not sure what it is with 8 to 14.

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Yes. I have double and triple checked. Sometimes it will open up after a couple seconds, but most of the time will not open up at all.

 

It's like there isn't enough power going into the radio to open the tone. (My description of what it seems like, may not be an appropriate term). I might try a no tone receive and see what happens.

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Since there's sparse usage of GMRS in my area, I run w/o any PL tones, except repeaters, of course.

Yes. I have double and triple checked. Sometimes it will open up after a couple seconds, but most of the time will not open up at all.

It's like there isn't enough power going into the radio to open the tone. (My description of what it seems like, may not be an appropriate term). I might try a no tone receive and see what happens.

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I could probably do the same. I have a local channel which has the same tones as the repeater. And I use the 467 channels for talking around my property with my kids. We use the 462 channels and repeater channels when in the hills.

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So I messed around some more.

 

I went to channel 9 instead of using 8 and it works wonderfully. I must have hit a menu selection which I keep skipping over for channel 8.

 

All the channels I use work fine now. (After switching over to 9 from 8)

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