multiple Radio Questions

Hi there my names Owen and im looking to buy 2 way uhf radios under licence for my new job but here is my problems…
I’m looking for a Base station and 2 handheld units.

I am a Gamekeeper and contract to many estates.

When i look on E bay i see dual band hand helds and mobile units which sound prefect as i can tune them my self is this aloud??
also i need the units to be transferable over frequencies as i work on a few shoots some on vhf and some on uhf. can i tune these to a new band as required I’m unsure of this also.

as most gamekeepers do not know what frequencies there radios operate on can u get a handheld that will scan bands and find the band if you key up one of there radios.

sorry quick update im based in the uk.

Thank you massively in advance or any help as im not a proffesional at this :rolleyes:

Hey Owen! Welcome
I’m not too sure about the licensing rules in the UK but be sure to check with your gov. authorities before operating on any particular frequencies. Here in the United States all business and public safety frequencies must be registered and licensed with the Federal Communications Commision, with a few exceptions.

I would not normally recommend the dual band radios off eBay for a couple reasons: the quality is not what you would see in a dedicated commercial radio such as a Motorola, Kenwood, Vertex, Icom, etc. The other issue I have with eBay radios is the lack of dedicated warranty support, or a “real” company with a receptionist that you can call for help, troubleshooting, or repair. With that being said, your situation does come up often and various members ask about a dual band, self-programmable radio for its convenient features.

If you go ahead and purchase the dual band radios here is the answer to most of your questions.

  1. Yes, your radios will be capable of being programmed for VHF and UHF frequencies to suit your needs. UHF for your business and VHF to talk with your contracted gamer’s radios. The dual band radio should reference the frequency split (ie.430-470mhz, 136-174mhz) that the radio is capable of and can be tuned to. This is important because a dual band radio is properly aligned and tuned for a certain set of frequencies - even if you were able to program a channel outside the specified frequency range the radio would not perform well on that channel. The legality of programming the radio yourself is solely dependent on the frequencies you are programming. Again check with your local authorities. In the US, you would have to obtain a license for your business’s UHF frequency from the FCC. Any contracted gamer’s or clients you work with that have their own license, you can use their frequency operating under their license granted (1) you have their permission and approval, (2) your radio meets their specifications listed on the license as a transmitter (power output, qty.).
  2. Yes, you can purchase a frequency finder or common scanner off the web which will enable you to scan for the other gamekeeper’s frequencies. Uniden offers a really great feature called “close call” which you will find very useful. Instead of scanning through sets of frequency banks all over the spectrum slowly, close call allows you to search for frequencies which are coming in with a strong signal relative to your location. Stand next to a gamekeeper and have him hold the PTT button down and transmit- your scanner will pick it up instantly without going through the whole radio spectrum. Most newer scanners will give you the CTCSS/DCS code also.

Was there a particular dual-band radio you were looking at?

The Chinese made Quansheng TG-UV2 is a good dual band (VHF 5 w/UHF 4w) handheld unit. I bought one from a Hongkong vendors that sells radios through eBay on one of my recent trips (for U$60) and I couldn’t be happier with the unit from a usability standpoint. I’m not getting in to what your local law requires here, but it is one of the best bang for the buck. I also have a puxing777 but that’s a single band and not as user friendly.

TG-UV2 has a dual-band watch, so you can transmit on VHF and monitor UHF. Or use cross band, transmit on VHF and receive on UHF. Or keep it straight VHF to VHF or UHF to UHF. It will work single band or cross-band repeaters and everything you need can be programmed right on the keypad without the computer. The only thing that doesn’t come standard is the voice inversion scrambler. It has that function but it is not equipped out of the box. It comes with a built in FM-radio so you can tune into your favorite music channels.

The unit is well built, long life lithium ion (2000mah) battery will run all day even if you yap all day; maybe two days if you don’t talk as much as i do . My staff has also dropped it on the concrete floor already without damage. The users manual is written in less than perfect English but the keypad interphase is intuitive. If you get one give me a shout here and I can give you a quick tutorial.

If your clients show up with radios purchased from sporting goods or hunter supply stores, they are most likely on GMRS (UHF 440mhz) band. You can find a table of those frequencies and the CTCSS/DCS squelch codes online for that particular brand. This TG-UV2 will work with those off the shelf radios, you can even preprogram most of the common frequencies and change the CTCSS/DCS codes on a case-by-case basis with each client. I have tried it with both Cobra and Midlands off-the-shelf, consumer grade radios w/o any setup problems. It also works with commercial radios like the highend iComs we just got to test at work. Lastly, this is an analogue radio, but a really good quality one compared to off the shelf midlands from a sporting goods store.

As for that mobile unit, you may want to find a slightly older iCOM dual band ham unit that will do “Cross Band Repeating” since it is likely that your clients may be bringing hand-held units that are UHF or VHF. The mobile unit can then serve as a mobile repeater to extend your hand held’s range.

What has been the average lifespan of the eBay dual-band radio and Puxing you are using? I’m curious to see real world users report their experience. RX and TX are up to spec?

How do they compare the the new IC-F4161 IDAS radios you are using now?

From a functionality point of view, if you need the ability to enter frequencies manually and change settings on the handheld frequently without hooking up to a cable and computer software, then the Quangsheng TG-UV2 is great. It also has a great 2000mAh battery that will last for 2 days! RX / TX wattage are both up to spec. In urban environment (simplex) it will reach up to 2 miles. As for repeaters, I can hit one as far as 20 miles away on 5 watts.

The Puxing 777 is not a dual-band unit, battery is not as good, and the keypad entry is not as intuitive, but it comes with voice-inversion standard and a lighter case. I would still go with the TG-UV2 in this comparison because it has more functions. But to be fair, if you need a light 5 watt unit to carry in your pocket, either one of these would do. Both are well made, much tougher than the top of the line 5w midland gmrs you can buy from ■■■■’s sporting goods. If you want a super light radio, another alternative is the Baosheng UV3R. I also tested it. It’s a tiny 2 watt dual-band, cost like $35, amazing performance compared to midland, which I also had but RTV. Again, I am leaving licensing and local regulatory requirements out of this comparison.

Both TG-UV2 and the 777 casings are made of hard mil-std plastic and very durable for daily use. if you are close to a repeater you can swap the 5 inch rubber ducky for a snub ducky. Both have SMA-F connector and plenty of aftermarket antennas to chose from. The TGUV2 is a little heavier and the original whip antenna is not as durable as the 777. If you drop the TGUV2 hard on its antenna it may damage it, but nothing an aftermarket Diamond Antenna can’t fix. The 777’s rubber ducky is thicker. But again, it’s a single band radio so the TG-UV2 wins hands down in all categories even in one-hand operation.

The IC-F4161 is in a whole different category. It’s single band radio, limited frequency range. And the IC-F4161 costs 7x more than the Chinese made units. iCom weighs like a brick, can probably use as a hammer or a weapon. It is built like a brick, but every time you need to setup a frequency you would have to hook it up to the laptop. The configuration software is easy after spending some time with it ; I got it all fig’d out now. Also, the iCom antenna connector is a weird MX stud, so not easy to get none OEM replacements or hookup to an external antenna. This is not a radio for you unless you have dedicated tech support at your disposal.

In the urban environment it also has a range of up to 2 miles but no more. Just for kicks, I tested it at 5,000 feet on my plane and it was able to hit a repeater 110 miles away talking to one of my staff :smiley:

Because of the weight and size, iCom is hard to operate with single handed. To change preset zones and change frequency. It may take two hands to push buttons and twist knobs. BUT nothing in this world beats the icom digital audio mode, voice encryption is also a big plus. Unless your work requires high security, or you have money to burn on an iCom, the sub $100 Chinese HTs will do. You can buy 7 for the price of one iCom and they are dual band.

All of these radios are winners in their own category. Enjoy!!

Hi Everyone thank you for your responces they have been great.
Ok so i got more brain teasers for you

  1. is there any dualband handhelds that cover the full vhf uhf bands that are legal in the uk, i notice some don’t cover as much as some others and others would be illegal as they cover to much!! so confusing.

i have moved from the ideas of ebay im lookin for somthing good that is fully legal in the uk
Thanks for all the help so far.

also i have been advised that i need a mobile station in the jeep, can i just ask what a repeater is???

i am sorrry for all these questions but i need to get up to speed as fast as possible :confused: thanks again