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Repeaters on GMRS

Guest Gregwrts418

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Guest Gregwrts418

I'm new to the gmrs radio world and would like to know if you can connect repeaters to increase my range I live in Virginia and would like to use my radio to talk to family in North Carolina thank you for your time 

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Welcome to the exciting and dynamic world of GMRS!

Short answer to your question: No/Probably not

Longer answer: You can use repeaters on GMRS but their range is usually limited to around 100 miles or so and any mountains between the repeater and either of the two people talking would block the signal completely.. So IF there is a repeater between you that you can both "see" and connect to with your radios, then, maybe.


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I'm very new at this, but MyGMRS has a map of different repeaters... and you can hear the radio traffic streamed online.   

Is this like a gateway or digital mode?

Still puzzling about the utility of DMR.   A lot of the utility can be replicated with a smartphone app / Discord chat room / Skype call.

Using an HT to transmit a radio signal 15 feet to your raspberry pi and then to the internet... seems unnecessarily complicated.

I understand that if this is where the smart radio people talk, maybe it is worth the expense to listen to them.

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You won't find DMR on GMRS units.

DMR started life as a commercial / business radio mode. The type of thing used on construction sites, for example. It supports things like "private calls" (each radio has an ID number assigned, and one can specify the ID number as the target when hitting PTT) and "talk groups" (which, in my example, might be "delivery trucks", "carpenters") which can be used to isolate communications to specific groups of people while using the SAME frequency (granted, the radios will not transmit if the frequency is busy with a group one is not listening to). Most also support two "time slots" -- mixing the two via careful timing so a conversation on TS1 can be going on at the same time as one on TS2.

It is only recently that some manufacturers are making DMR radios targeted at the Amateur market. FCC rules for Part 90 (Land Mobile) is that the radios can not be programmed from the front panel; they are supposed to be set up by a shop using computer software to configure the IDs, talk groups, frequencies. That is one of the disappointments with my best DMR unit -- it focused so much on incorporating an Amateur front panel programming option, which is locked to just Amateur frequency bands, that even setting it (via software) to the "business" mode (disable front panel programming) won't unlock the frequency range. Otherwise I'd add GMRS and MURS channels for emergency use (FCC rules allow one to use any radio for emergency traffic). I have an older DMR unit that I did add GMRS, MURS, and some of the Marine band frequencies (just in case I'm ever near the big lakes).

myGMRS appears to have borrowed a system created for Amateur hotspots, modified/limited it to GMRS users via some central registry, AND passing FM traffic (Amateur hotspots normally only handle the digital modes -- D-STAR, DMR, System Fusion -- as that is already a digitized stream; FM needs to be sampled into some form [PCM/WAV, MP3, ?] in order to be passed between nodes).

The intent of such linked systems is to provide wider coverage (Amateur hotspots are useful when one can not reach a repeater, most repeaters are often linked to a network of reflectors [D-STAR], talk-groups [DMR], rooms [Fusion], so one can effectively get the equivalent of dozens of repeaters covering different "subjects". GMRS linking doesn't support that feature.


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