I just got an H8 and I am LOST!
Check with your radio dealer who sold you this rebranded version of the Baofeng UV-5R.
There are several variations of the TD-H8, including Ham and GMRS radios. They all program differently, and it depends on the exact model, the country you live in and the licence you possess. Understand that this is not a “walkie talkie” radio, and, if for example, you live in the U.S., you need an amateur radio licence for the Ham version, and a GMRS licence for the GMRS version. We really can’t help you until we know the variation you bought and the licence you possess.
H8 GMRS, USA, $35 GMRS license.
Okay, so what exactly do you need to know? A GMRS radio comes preprogrammed to GMRS frequencies. Turn them on, scroll to the same channel and they will talk to each other.
If you need any special programming, for example to use a GMRS repeater in your area, you can program them using CHIRP. If you don’t have a programming cable yet, pick up a GOOD cable. (Avoid any cable with the counterfeit Prolific chip as this causes a lot of issues with drivers; instead get a cable with a FTDI chip in it and a copy of the free CHIRP programming software.)
If you have the Bluetooth version of the radio, you will need the app on your phone and you can program it by Bluetooth. (The wired version to your computer via FTDI USB cable is much more reliable than by Bluetooth though.)
If you have problems with accessories or apps, Tidradio may have been pulled off the market due to issues with fake FCC numbers, but they should already have come with preprogramming of all GMRS channels. They are essentially a rebranded GMRS-only version of the Baofeng UV-5R, so if you need further details, you can start there. Let us know if you have any specific questions. Fully programmable GMRS radios with the same keypads as Ham radios are versatile in many ways, but they are not as simple as the bubble-pack FRS or GMRS radios you can buy at big box stores. Let us know how we can help.
Thanks, that helped. I just ordered a cable so I can use CHIRP. I was going to use RepeaterBook for repeaters. Hmmm. Just 38 in California! Seems like a low number.
So the preprogammed channels dont need “privacy” tones or what ever they call it? I can just change to them and use like old CB?
They don’t “need” tones. Both radios need to be on the same channel. With no tones set they should communicate. If you are going to use tones then both radios must have the same tone set. Privacy tones are not private. You can be heard by anyone on that channel without a privacy tone set. Privacy tones just make it so you won’t be bothered by other radios on that channel that don’t have the same tone set.
Where is the a decent list of repeaters? I looked up Repeaterbook but there are only 36 or so listed, 25% are closed, and 100% are nowhere near me!
Try mygmrs.com. There are as many GMRS repeaters in most areas as there are Amateur Radio 2m repeaters.
The Tidradio H8 is definitely not a Rebranded UV5R. As far as I know, the ham version was never released. The H8 is a bluetooth-programmable radio that can interface with the Odemaster software. I was part of the beta test and have a totally unlocked, 10-watt model.