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TOPIC: Baofeng Questions

Baofeng Questions 2 weeks ago #27684

I want to get a police/EMS scanner and the BaoFeng's radios popped up in my search. I am going to look on YouTube for reviews but I wanted to hear from people that I know. I am looking at the UV5R and the BaoFeng UV-5RA right now. $5.00 difference between them.

I need to know if you own them are they good or bad and why. Other helpful information would be helpful also. What accessories are not worth it? What accessories are defiantly worth it?

Is there a different model you would rather have? Keep in mind these radios are $20.00-$25.00 and I am not going to go pay $500.00 for a radio when I don't have the money and if I did then I probably still wouldn't.

My original search was as a scanner but if I get Ham in the mix then why not.

Re: Baofeng Questions 2 weeks ago #27685

  • prepsimple
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Happy New Year!

Well, I can't speak to the UV-5R, never had one. I do own a UV-5RA and a BF-F9V2+. They have both served me well! I know you will hear a number of comments about the Baofengs quality, but they haven't let me down yet! I've had and used them for over a year now. Yes, there are better radios out there, but not really at this price range.

As far as the 5RA or the F9V2+... My preference is the latter. It has a variable output wattage up to 8 watts. The 5RA only goes to 5 watts.

In any event, the Baofengs have worked for me.

Hope that helps!
Last Edit: 2 weeks ago by prepsimple. Reason: correction

Re: Baofeng Questions 2 weeks ago #27686

  • JimCosta
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The FCC states that in an emergency you are not required to have a license.
A collapse is an emergency.

Also note that the FCC does not monitor for unlicensed users, the members of local radio clubs do.
But in emergency, they will not even attempt to do so.

In plain English, the Baofeng is an anomalie as radios go. They are the only hand held HAM radio that will communicate with the cheap GMRS radios as well as the 2 meter HAM frequencies, as well as the Marine radios.

Our Group Retreat uses them in conjunction with the cheap GMRS radios from Walmart. Most Security members will monitor just one GMRS station, using the cheaper GMRS radios, while the leaders talk privately on HAM frequencies using the Baofengs and still able to use the GMRS station. This way if the enemy is using a GMRS (more probable than any other radio) they cannot hear the Intel discussed, just meaningless orders perhaps in code).

The GMRS radio has a range of about a half mile whereas the HAM can go 40 miles if using a repeater or up to 6 miles if from a hand-held to a hand-held or raised antenna. Compare this to a WWII walkie talkie with a range of one mile.

Our intelligence desk has a Baofeng with a magnetic car antenna ($6 Amazon ) that increases it's GMRS range farther beyond the
standard half mile range, perhaps to about 4 miles.

Also keep in mind that sometimes the GMRS may not pierce walls or floors whereas the UV5R will (without a raised antenna). So some outside guards may need the Baofeng. You have some decisions to make. You can still cure this problem by placing the above $6 antenna on the rooftop for the UV5R in the house to use so now it will communicate with all the GMRS radios outside with certainty.

The Baofeng UV5R costs $25. The GMRS costs $11.

We have an intelligence desk that will monitor all GMRS stations and pass on information. We want our guards to pay attention to only one station so they can focus on their immediate surroundings.

Thus the need for a few of the Baofengs in combination with GMRS radios for all others.
Last Edit: 1 week, 6 days ago by JimCosta.
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Re: Baofeng Questions 2 weeks ago #27687

  • JimCosta
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The UV5R is the best buy. The ones with a little more power do not really give you an advantage.

The disadvantage with the Baofeng is they are not waterproof as are hand held Marine band radios (which cost about $100 each). For the cheap price we just keep a few as spares.

Note: Here's how to ruin any hand held. Hit the Transmit button without an antenna installed.

We have about ten Baofengs and 20 GMRS radios, used in conjunction with each other. We (our group) have no complaints with the Baofengs.

Side note: Learn to program by hand. If you purchase some let me know and I will send you information on this. There is a patchcord for them and software. However, it generally works once then stops. Everyone has experienced this problem with the Baofengs. Do it by hand and it's no biggie. The problem is in the patchcords and not the radios.
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Re: Baofeng Questions 2 weeks ago #27688

  • JimCosta
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Accessories:

They are helpful depending on what you intend to use them for.

Consider:
Longer antenna if you wish to talk to another hand held 6 miles apart or to reach a repeater to get 40 mile range. $17 Amazon
See also $9 Amazon

Car battery adopter (12 VDC) is great perhaps. $12 Amazon

Spare battery that can be recharged while another is powering up the radio.

$9 magnetic car antenna is a must if you want to talk from the car. Comes with long cord. Amazon

The radio itself comes with earphones.

You can also order a separate microphone if needed.
Last Edit: 2 weeks ago by JimCosta.
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Re: Baofeng Questions 2 weeks ago #27691

  • prepsimple
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Great comment Jim!

Re: Baofeng Questions 1 week, 6 days ago #27696

JimCosta wrote:
Side note: Learn to program by hand. If you purchase some let me know and I will send you information on this. There is a patchcord for them and software. However, it generally works once then stops. Everyone has experienced this problem with the Baofengs. Do it by hand and it's no biggie. The problem is in the patchcords and not the radios.


Thanks for the info Jim. I'll probably have questions later.

Re: Baofeng Questions 1 week, 4 days ago #27702

Has anyone had experience with these radios? 8 watts of transmit power and supposed to use the UV-5 accessories.

Baofeng Black BF-F9 V2+ TRI-POWER 8 Watts Two Way Dual-Band HAM Radio VHF/UHF FM

www.ebay.com/itm/390980003153

Or

Baofeng F9+TP Tri-Power 8W 136-174/400-520Mhz FM Ham Two-Way HP Radio + Cable&CD

www.ebay.com/itm/182136872584

I think this second one is a copy or bootleg but I am ignorant on the subject.

What turned me on is the 8watts of power.

Re: Baofeng Questions 1 week, 4 days ago #27703

  • JimCosta
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Mat Gen: I am a HAM for Prepper purposes only. I am not a "thing" type person and certainly not into electronics except only as a tool. So be leary of my response here.

The difference between a regular 5 watt Beofeng and a new 8 watt Beofeng is the same difference as between a 6 inch and a 7 inch miniskirt - there ain't no difference because the skirts are always moving around and going up and down!

Compare: A 2 meter handheld is between 5 and 8 watts. The 2 meter car and home base stations are 40 - 50 watts.

The additional 3 watts impact (8-5) can be achieved by adding the longer antenna.

If you want the new and improved Beofeng 8 watter then buy it, it's inexpensive and a great radio. Just don't expect it to greatly change your radio life. You are still gonna get the same range. Viva La Miniskirt!
Last Edit: 1 week, 4 days ago by JimCosta.

Re: Baofeng Questions 1 week, 4 days ago #27704

  • prepsimple
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My feelings are more wattage is just that, more wattage! Jim probably is right to some degree about the difference between 5 and 8 watts being about the same as changing to a longer antenna. So, for price range, get the 8 watts and the longer antenna.
As I said earlier, for the price the Baofengs are hard to beat. They are great to have for local comms.
Oh yeah, I do have a longer antenna on my 8 watt. Works fine for a compact handheld.
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