Quick Review – Wouxun KG-UV8E Tri Band HT

Wouxun KG-UV8EBought the Wouxun KG-UV8E based on the good experience I had with the KG-UVD1P.

The Color display is very good and rather large for an HT.

The 2600 mAh battery life is exceptionally good and does not drain when powered off as the KG-UVD1P does.

A group of us locals have access to a 1.25 meter repeater and performance on the band is very good even on low power.

The channel / VFO Knob gets tight in spots and the screw holding rubber side cover was so loose it was ready to fall out.

Very loud reception causes the speaker to be distorted.

After purchasing the radio, I found out that there is and E and T version. The difference is that a factory reset of the E version causes the firmware to reboot to Chinese while the T version reboots to English. Of course flipping through the Ching-lish manual will save your day with the E version.

Since I only had an old (pain in the ass) Prolific chipped programming cable I also purchased the Red programming cable. The Red cable was hassle free with Windows 10. No monkeying around with the old drivers from the stone age as is the case with the old Prolific chip. Unlike the expensive RT Systems cables, the red cable was around $15. By the way, the Red cable also works for Baofeng and I’d imagine some Kenwood HT’s as well.

Again no radio is perfect but for the price it was a decent buy for the additional 1.25 meter band. If you are looking for specs or videos, Google it. There is no point in regurgitating the same information that’s already available on countless other Web sites.

National Parks on the Air

National Parks on the Air https://npota.arrl.org/nps-events.php
Throughout 2016, Amateur Radio will be helping the National Park Service celebrate their 100th anniversary. Hams from across the country will activate NPS units, promote the National Park Service and showcase Amateur Radio to the public.

National Parks on the Air

National WW1 Museum Event

National WWI MuseumEvent Date: October 8-9, 2016

Event Title: WW1USA

Location: National WW1 Museum, Liberty Memorial, Kansas City, MO

Website:

Talk In: 145.1300

Public Contact Info: National World War 1 Museum Amateur Radio Club
100 W. 26th St
Kansas City, MO 64108

Battles of Isonzo, Hosted by the Raytown ARC, www.k0gq.com

All licensed operators can get $5 admission to the Museum.

More info at QRZ as well

Pubic Contact Phone: 816-888-8100

Public Contact Email: ww1usa@theworldwar.org

Mint Drake MN75 Tuner

SOLD!

I have a mint Drake MN75 Tuner with original manual. This tuner is my personal equipment. Asking $200 shipped CONUS only. No trades please, serious inquires only! Contact me @ ke2yk.cw@gmail.com. Thanks for reading my ad guys!

 

Mint Drake MN75 For Sale

A New DV4mini Arrives On Scene

DV4mini USB StickWireless Holdings sells leading edge modules and accessories to Ham Radio operators. Wireless Holdings has been in the digital gadget market over 40 years, and leverages a network of professional engineers to bring the latest digital gadgets to the market.

Why would anyone be interested in a DV4mini USB Stick? First I should explain that the DV4mini is a miniature, low power transceiver which you can use around the house or portable with any HT capable of one of the four digital modes. DSTAR, DMR Plus, Fusion or P25. Download a copy of the DV4mini manual for more detail.

In my case, even though  I live in an area tightly packed with analog RF, there are no digital repeaters close enough to reliably access with an HT. Unless I connect my CS700 to my roof antenna, I cannot reach the DMR TRBO repeater in my area. Visit DMR-MARC if you want to know more about TRBO for Ham Radio.

So using DMR with the DV4mini (although not TRBO) gets me connected to the digital world using DMR Plus (Hytera systems). I cannot speak about DSTAR, Fusion or P25. My only experience has been using DMR Plus. I don’t spend a lot of time with the DV4mini however I had the pleasure of having a QSO with a Ham from Japan a few weeks back.

My 70cm DV4mini has worked flawlessly since I purchased it some months ago. As I mentioned in a prior article, I built up a Raspberry Pi with the necessary software to run the DV4mini console. If anyone is interested in my notes about building up the software necessary to run the DV4mini Console and other Raspian Jessie ramblings,  stop by my homebrew Ham Radio Forum.

Recently I received an email stating that Wireless Holdings will start selling the DV4mini  in a 2 meter version. Just in time for Dayton Hamvention!

73, Gary KE2YK

 

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GSARA Hamfest – May 2016

GSARA Hamfest

World Amateur Radio Day is April 18th 2016

World Amateur Radio Day

World Amateur Radio Day (WARD) is observed every April 18. The date marks the founding of the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) back in 1925.

Each year, radio amateurs everywhere will get on the air and celebrate Amateur Radio’s contribution to society.

“April 18 is the day for all of Amateur Radio to celebrate and tell the world about the science we can help teach, the community service we can provide, and the fun we have,” the IARU said in announcing World Amateur Radio Day 2016. “We hope you will join in the fun and education that is World Amateur Radio Day!”

 

Read the full ARRL article here.

Andy KB1OIQ’s Ham Radio Apps Update

ARRL Centennial Challenge Coin Art FINAL

IMHO, one of the things I enjoyed most about the ARRL Centennial Convention in 2014 were the Amateur Radio related forums I attended on a ton of different topics.

One of the forums I attended was Andy’s KB1OIQ’s presentation on his remastered version of Amateur Radio applications running on Ubuntu Linux.

There are a bunch of these remixes like ShackBox floating around but I really enjoyed his presentation and his dedication to his project. Back then I downloaded and ran the version available at that time. It seems that his work continues to be popular since the current SourceForge page shows that he’s had almost 700 downloads just this week.

Tux

TUX

Andy now has both a 32-bit and 64-bit version which contain a host of Ham Radio software like Fldigi, NBEMS, Gpredict and many more. Andy’s version 19 matches up with the Ubuntu 14.04.4 LTS release.

As with Andy’s past versions, the GUI desktop is customized with menus for Amateur Radio use. Andy has gone through great pains to make the distribution lightweight so that it will also run on older computer hardware.

Interested? Hop over to Sourceforge and grab Andy’s latest download!

New DV4home Coming To Dayton

For those of us who take and interest in digital radio or have been experimenting with the DV4Mini, Wireless Holdings recently announced their new DV4 system called DV4home .

According to Wireless Holdings, the DV4home is going to include the following features:

  • Can be used with or without a DV4mini for DStar/C4FM/DMR/dPMR/P25
  • Use your radio or connect a microphone and speaker to the DV4home
  • No Linux experience is required
  • Simple set up with navigation on display
  • Improved shielding with metal case
  • Extended temperature range (-40C – +85C) for mobile use
  • Works with 12 V power supply

Wireless Holdings states that the finished product  will be on display at the Dayton Hamvention.

Quick Review – New 2016 Baofeng UV-3R

Recently I picked up a new car and decided that I am done with installing mobile radios, cables and antennas as I had over the past 30 years. I don’t commute any longer and just don’t spend that much time in the car so my thoughts turned to the idea of grabbing a cheap HT to throw in the glove box.

 

2016 UV-3R

After owning the original UV-3R, I was skeptical about grabbing the new Dual Display UV-3R 2016 version. Remembering back to my original UV-3R, it’s problem was rejection of unwanted signals.

The area around my QTH is densely packed with radio signals. However, the advantage of signal density  is that there are plenty of 2/70 cm analog repeaters to choose from. As a result the 2 watt limitation of the new UV-3R presents no problem for me.

 

Specs:

Go here if you want detailed Tech Specs. Basically, for around $30, it’s a 99 channel dual band, dual display 2/70cm HT in a small ‘credit card sized’ form factor with a 3.7 volt 1500 mAh Li-Ion battery.

Operating:

The Dual Band Screen of the new UV-3R is an asset. Manually programming the radio is pretty easy but if you are going to add tons of repeaters or fire/ems frequencies, grab a programming cable and use the free CHIRP software.

Navigation:

The radio has a couple of basic issues. There is no keypad so it takes extra effort to program the radio and to navigate around to change simple settings like the squelch level. The FM Radio has poor reception. But who buys an HT to listen to FM Radio anyway.

Audio:

The on-board speaker is loud with no distortion. If you plan to use earbuds you will notice that the audio is muffled and the gain is somewhat reduced .

Antenna:

In general, any rubber duck is nothing more than a Dummy Load but at my QTH hitting the local repeaters presents no problem with the stock antenna.

Just a word on HT antennas, there are tons of knock off rubber duck antennas on the market. Buyer beware when looking for a replacement because you may end up with an antenna that performs worse than the original!

Scanning:

The UV-3R scans EMS and Fire frequencies fairly well. Using CHIRP, you can easily select which frequencies to scan.

Battery: 

No complaints. With normal use the HT ran for a full day.

Manual:

Go here to grab your copy.

Summary:

IMHO, for around $30, how can you go wrong? This little GEM is a great little grab-n-go HT.