DMR Radio Choice

Roberteod
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DMR Radio Choice

Post by Roberteod » Tue Jun 13, 2017 3:58 am

I am looking at buying a DMR radio. Right now my choices are MD380 VHF, MD380 UHF, CS580. I am seeking opinions from the openspot community. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks

milehigher
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by milehigher » Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:00 am

Why not step up from the 380 monbander into the MD 2017 and have both , the openspot is currently UHF only , but If you live somewhere with VHF of have analog repeater contacts the dual bander would serve you better longer. I won't buy a long band radio, because even at the lowest cost resale value is almost nothing so I always go for dual band.

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K7CTC
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by K7CTC » Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:53 am

I went with the CS580 for my first (and only) DMR rig and have been pleased with it. For the price, it's a decent radio. Since it's my only DMR radio I have nothing to compare it to, but I definitely don't regret my purchase.

I know from listening to the busy talk groups it seems like everyone has an MD-380 so there is a big community around that model. Seems almost as popular as the Baofeng UV-5R became a few years back. Not anything against the MD-380 but I have pretty much given up on the cheap Chinese rigs... Too many issues for me to justify the low cost.

The CS580 drivers work without any "hacking". The firmware is influenced by the folks at Connect Systems to make it more amateur friendly. The programming software (while not fun to use) seems to be written better than other Chinese equivalents and has yet to crash on my Windows 7 machine.

Also, the openSPOT is UHF only at the moment. Also, it seems that the majority of the DMR repeaters are also UHF (but this is of course location specific). Here in Utah, DMR is exclusively used on UHF so personally it made no sense for me to get a VHF rig.

73,
Chris (K7CTC)

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PD1WP
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by PD1WP » Tue Jun 13, 2017 7:22 am

I now use 2 radios. A TYT MD-390 and a Hytera PD-685GPS. These are for the UHF. For the VHF use in another radio. That's why the TYT 2017 is NOT interesting for me.
PD1WP Wilfred

milehigher
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by milehigher » Tue Jun 13, 2017 12:48 pm

I carry 2 radio a Kenwood 74a tri band Dstar,APRS
A Yaesu FT 1, dual band, C4FM , APRS ,DMR
Either radio can be switched out for Yaesu VX 5R if I am going someplace with a 6 meter machine, all three are spark to space receivers pretty much ,and in all cases I redundant backups for 2/70 cm then my mobile is either an IC 7000 all band all mode mobile or a Kenwood TMD 710 G, I had contemplated a Hytera x1p but that breaks my cardinal rule of dual band, and in my opinion the exclusive dealer for Hytera could not answer basic questions on the radio and performance and the accesories are way to expensive, the accesories are Hyt era only and a speaker mic is $200 a remote head kit cable for a mobile is $400 +, and having to get all software and support from a dealer who can't answer simple questions on the radio performsnce scares me, I would revisit consideration if more dealers come on line and the price for accesories comes down to earth or become less brand and radio specific , people joke about the dstar tax wait until they get a load of the Hytera user tax .Hytera in LMR is what Icom is becoming, lots of features that to use requires expensive optional equipment that inflates the radios price by $300-400 .

We all had a one and only radio one day , they multiply like "trybles" before you know it, the shack is full or the house is full .

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K7CTC
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by K7CTC » Tue Jun 13, 2017 2:55 pm

milehigher mentioned the Yaesu FT1D. I own one as well but paid way more than they are currently selling for :( . But, if you intend to use the radio you buy mostly with an openSPOT the FT1D is worth a look.

The openSPOT can do cross mode DMR/Fusion so if you went with the FT1D you can still play on DMR (with an openSPOT) or you could also check out the Fusion reflectors. I have tried all this with the FT1D and it's pretty cool. As an added bonus, the openSPOT passes the call sign information though to the radio on DMR. Whereas on a DMR rig, you will have to hack the firmware (MD-380 tools) or program the people you talk to the most into the radio otherwise you just see the DMR ID #.

-K7CTC

milehigher
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Re: RE: Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by milehigher » Tue Jun 13, 2017 6:11 pm

K7CTC wrote:milehigher mentioned the Yaesu FT1D. I own one as well but paid way more than they are currently selling for :( . But, if you intend to use the radio you buy mostly with an openSPOT the FT1D is worth a look.

The openSPOT can do cross mode DMR/Fusion so if you went with the FT1D you can still play on DMR (with an openSPOT) or you could also check out the Fusion reflectors. I have tried all this with the FT1D and it's pretty cool. As an added bonus, the openSPOT passes the call sign information though to the radio on DMR. Whereas on a DMR rig, you will have to hack the firmware (MD-380 tools) or program the people you talk to the most into the radio otherwise you just see the DMR ID #.

-K7CTC
Yep I use the openspot, i bought the FT 1 because for the price of $229 i could not resist the price of the FT 70r being a single reciever dual band made the FT 1 not something to pass by, the only real complaint I have is the battery belt clip.other than that even the two handed volume is not as annoying as I thought it would be. All in all the things that kept me away when more expensive turned out to be non issues ,I am glad I got it.

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k3ACE
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by k3ACE » Tue Jun 20, 2017 3:49 pm

I have the cs750 that I use with Openspot. I also have the cs800 mobile rig that I use direct to repeaters. The CS lines are a tad more expensive then some of the others, but they have great fit and finish and are very well supported. I'd go as far to say that their quality rivals the Motorola lines at half the cost..or more

N9KO - Calvin
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by N9KO - Calvin » Tue Jun 20, 2017 10:20 pm

As mentioned previously, do you use VHF, UHF repeaters (MD380) , or both (MD2017)? The CS580 is a good radio, but the MD380 radios have been around a while and there are a lot of postings in YahooGroups and Facebook for reference. Google each radio and you will see what I mean. Also, the Experimental Firmware for the 380, primarily UHF version, really adds nice feature. Looks like there will be Experimental Firmware for the new 2017 coming soon.

Stewmair
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Re: DMR Radio Choice

Post by Stewmair » Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:29 am

The Zastone D900 is a clone of the TYT980 but was slightly cheaper at the time. It is functionally identical and as robust. You need to filch the TYT code plug as the Zastone one misses on a few features.
The TYT plug works perfectly.

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