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  1. #1
    El Diablo
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    Exclamation GMRS - new Black Sheep standard

    I don't really know these radios at all, but I just want one that I can boost to the point that the radio waves will warm up my burrito when I transmit and wave the antenna back and forth across my lunch.

  2. #2
    Super Swamper
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    As best I can tell, one can identify the "new" type FRS radios by:

    22 channels
    2 watts power

    -Those two properties are in line with the updated FCC regulations.

    I just ordered a set of 2 Motorola's: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    Agreed on the GMRS / FRS interoperability.
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  4. #3
    Super Swamper
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    Quote Originally Posted by alrock View Post
    I don't really know these radios at all, but I just want one that I can boost to the point that the radio waves will warm up my burrito when I transmit and wave the antenna back and forth across my lunch.
    This ought to do, then: https://www.ebay.com/c/14007794779

    100 watts of UHF? No thanks! I don't want to be anywhere near the antenna for that radio when it transmits.
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    06 H3 (04-14-2021)

  6. #4
    Super Swamper
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    Quote Originally Posted by LagunaH1 View Post
    This ought to do, then: https://www.ebay.com/c/14007794779

    100 watts of UHF? No thanks! I don't want to be anywhere near the antenna for that radio when it transmits.
    100 watts is nothing. Those are rookie numbers. You gotta pump those up to max legal limit, 1500 watts! If your antenna isn't arcing you're not using enough power.
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    06 H3 (04-14-2021)

  8. #5
    Baja

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    Midland has some nice gmrs radios.
    https://midlandusa.com/micromobile/

    Sent from my SM-G991U1 using Tapatalk

    Know your Bugs Bunny.... Very important.

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    LagunaH1 (04-14-2021)

  10. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by alrock View Post
    Now, I just need LagunaH1 to teach me how to use GMRS.
    Happy to help in any way I can. I think you (and everyone else who may be headed down this path) may find, that it's really really simple and easy. The basic concept is the exact same as a walkie talkie, except that these radios have FAR better antennas and FAR more power = much better range

    And, since I am wired the way I am: There *is* a licensing requirement from the FCC if you want to operate on GMRS channels. It's a fixed fee and as I recall there is no test involved. Reference: https://www.fcc.gov/wireless/support...rsal-licensing
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    JPaul (04-15-2021)

  12. #7
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    Honestly Alex I would just go with Midland's offerings. Cheaper and preset for the channels used. Those radios you linked are quite a bit more than you would ever need for GMRS/FRS and technically probably aren't legal for it, plus their interface sucks compared to the purpose built GMRS/FRS radios. For the same price as those you can get Midland's high end 40W GMRS mobile (which honestly is kind of overkill, if you really need distance then just move to Ham) and a pair of pretty good handhelds respectively.

    I'm actually looking at this one since it has the controls/display on the handheld mic and this is the bundle that has a bit more to it than the radio by itself:
    https://midlandusa.com/product/mxt27...y-radio-bundle

    But if you want to spend a little less you can get just the radio, still comes with a basic little mag mount antenna so it's ready to go out of the box:
    https://midlandusa.com/product/mxt27...two-way-radio/
    Last edited by JPaul; 04-15-2021 at 12:22 AM.
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  13. #8
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    I came across this review of the BTech radio: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVoTlrqsLuQ

    The radio is, as I suspected, made by Baofeng in China, but I like the many features and the wealth of information shown on the screen (TX power, incoming signal strength, microphone modulation)

    I have ordered one the mobile radio and am looking forward to installing it
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  14. #9
    El Diablo
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    They have more lights and buttons than the Midlands. That's pretty much my only prerequisite.

  15. #10
    Super Swamper
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    Also: Based on the Youtube video, it DOES seem like each button beeps when pressed. Perfection! :-D
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  16. #11
    Mud Terrain
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    Based on that video, the Btech seems the way to go. The midland vehicle mount gmrs radios do not transmit on FRS. Midland vehicle mount radios receive FRS only and receive and transmit GMRS.
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  18. #12
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    Probably because FRS regulations dictates a non-removeable antenna in addition to the lower power level. The BTech radios technically are not legal to use on FRS due to power and removable antennas, so I guess the question is which rule do you want to break? The licensing or the equipment rules?
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  20. #13
    Mud Terrain
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    The Btech shown is 90 or 95 legal, so it reduces power on FRS. The baofeng are the non legal variety.
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  22. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakesz28 View Post
    The Btech shown is 90 or 95 legal, so it reduces power on FRS. The baofeng are the non legal variety.
    It only reduces power on CH 1-7 that GMRS shares with FRS, those are the 2 watt channels. But I didn't notice it was FCC approved, that is good to know. Most of those chinese radios technically aren't approved but like illegal for the street LED and HID conversions it doesn't stop anyone from selling them nor using them.

    Quote Originally Posted by jakesz28 View Post
    Based on that video, the Btech seems the way to go. The midland vehicle mount gmrs radios do not transmit on FRS. Midland vehicle mount radios receive FRS only and receive and transmit GMRS.
    The BTECH transmits on the same channels as the Midland. Both are capable of transmitting on the dual use FRS/GMRS channels 1-7. Looking at the specs listed on that Amazon listing the BTECH only transmits on CH 1-7 (2W) and CH 15-22 (50W) (Note, BTECH claims to have channels 15-30 as opposed to 15-22. Most likely they are referring to the 8 additional repeater input channels, but those are supposed to only be used with duplex and not simplex. The Midland has the same additional repeater input channels but doesn't bother listing them as extra channels since they really aren't separate channels you can use by themselves.)

    So really aside from the extra 10W on CH 15-22 the transmit is exactly the same. CH 8-14 are FRS only and still limited to 0.5W based on what I could find.

    So with either the BTECH or the Midland mounted radios you're getting the same channels so you can go either direction. If you want to talk to someone that has a FRS radio only you are limited to CH 1-7 and 15-22 which are dual use channels, you won't be able to talk to them on CH 8-14 since those are FRS only.

    Personally I will prefer the Midland MXT275 that has the handheld controls since I am running out of real estate on my dash what with a CB, Ultragauge, cell phone, switch panel, and eventually the head for my Icom 706MkIIG ham radio. I have some other gauges and control panels I want to add there as well. And I think I want to relocate my trailer brake controller as well so that it's not right at my knee. Maybe I'll just switch to a Redarc brake controller since they have that nice remote mount control knob.
    Last edited by JPaul; 04-19-2021 at 05:44 PM.
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  23. #15
    Super Swamper
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    So to sum up and clarify:

    FRS:
    Ch 1-7 @ 2 watts
    Ch 8-14 @ 0.5 watts (half a watt)
    Ch 15-22 @ 2 watts

    GMRS:
    Ch 1-7 @ 5 watts (didn't notice this before!)
    Ch 8-14 @ 0.5 watts
    Ch 15-22 @ up to 50 watts


    FRS and GMRS both can use channels 1-7 but FRS is limited to 2 watts while GMRS is limited to 5 watts
    FRS and GMRS can use channels 8-14 but are both limited to only 0.5 watts
    FRS can use channels 15-22 at 2 watts
    GMRS can use channels 15-22 at up to 50 watts


    FRS radios are only handheld due to the requirement of not having a detachable antenna (changing the antenna can change the effective radiated power which is what the watt limitation actually is for rather than the raw watts going into the antenna from the transmitter).

    GMRS is permitted to have a detachable antenna, but to my knowledge properly designed (ie, actually legal and not grey area) handheld GMRS radios still have non-detachable antennas to comply with the requirement for FRS on the low power channels. Hence why the mobile radios don't even include channels 8-14. They could also easily transmit at 0.5 watts but since the antenna can be replaced and increase the effective power they block those channels out to maintain legal compliance.

    GMRS requires a license, technically.

    So if you don't want to get a license just get the nicer FRS handhelds that can do 2 watts on channels 1-7 and 15-22 but don't expect great range with them from inside a vehicle. It'll probably be OK at the distances we usually maintain with each other on the trails, but if you get separated don't be surprised if you can't reach anyone, especially if you are stuck inside your rig. I would not rely on FRS alone when operating from within a vehicle or doing anything with long distances and lots of obstacles in the way between users.

    Or tack on $70 for the GMRS license to be all legal and stuff for 10 years and then get a GMRS mobile for your rig plus some handhelds for walking around with and enjoy the extra power plus much better antennas on both the handhelds and the mobile units. Since the GMRS units can talk on
    the same channels as FRS you don't have to worry about who has what when everyone gets together. The FRS users will be able to take some advantage of the GMRS users since the GMRS users can transmit at higher power and with better antennas can receive from a greater distance. So a FRS user can talk at a farther distance with a GMRS user than they could with another FRS user. However two GMRS users can talk to each other at even greater distances still.
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