Tagged: communications FRS GMRS radio
August 4, 2014 at 5:09 pm #21052
Quick and Dirty Review!
These are just a basic el-cheapo pair of walkies that we have had in my house for a while. They do not sell them anymore but they do sell similar. Just wanted to put out there what you can expect from low grade consumer radios. I just recently got a chance to really put them to the test at a 3 day paintball game in Picton, Ontario.
My buddy and I needed a way to regroup and maintain contact due to the vast size of the field and all of the buildings on it, so in came the radio and molle adaptable radio pouches. (I highly discourage the purchase of the MOLLE radio pouch by Condor… the pouch is too small and the velcro cannot close properly. My radio fell several times.)
– The clarity of the radio despite vast numbers of concrete walls and wooden obstacles was impressive, and despite the half mile distances we encountered, we never had a failed transmission. However, I wouldn’t expect much more in terms of range, and keep in mind we were on level ground. No hills on the field.
– It took a beating and liked it. My radio was struck with a paintball and dropped at full sprint inside a concrete structure as well as on pavement and grass outside. I crawled through brush, dove, slammed and sprinted my way around for 10 hours of play. I was impressed with its survival. The T5600 and its cousins all seem to be pretty durable.
– Super user friendly. A monkey could switch channels and be fine. Transmitting is also very foolproof.
– These radios seem to all have an audible beep noise to confirm the end of your trasmission (on your end). This beep is loud and CANNOT be disabled. It was the cause of several painful welts. In the real deal? It could kill you.
– Limited number of channels.
– No option on this model to use batteries instead of the chargeable battery pack.
– Volume swivel on top often is moved via contact with your pocket, pouch, and environment. This lead to blaring transmissions sometimes while others, worse, never hearing my teammate at all.
These kinds of radios are cheap and in a pinch they will get the job of communicating done within a mile. However, they should never be used in tactical applications, and I do not recommend them for hunting owing to their noisy behavior. I personally would avoid them, except as a back up to radios you may already have. Good for vehicle to vehicle communication. And if you have the license, definitely get a pair of baofeng radios instead for a better price on better radios!
(PS this is the field, as you can see there was indeed a lot of concrete.)August 4, 2014 at 6:13 pm #21054
I’m impressed with your survival!August 4, 2014 at 9:10 pm #21072
There is definitely a place for “close area communication” afforded by the small FRS/GMRS radios. Troops in Iraq, used FRS radios, because they found them easier to operate for squad/platoon level comms, then the SINCGARS radios.
As for the non-tactical Roger Beep…
At my hunting camp, we have the “No Roger-Beep Rule”. We do a radio check every morning, inside the cabin. If your radio Roger-Beeps during radio test, you make breakfast for everyone. If somebody’s radio gives a Roger-Beep after the day’s hunting has started, they must buy a case of beer for the camp. If you leave your radio unsecured, and someone else turns your Roger-Beep on… you are STILL liable. Part of the fun of deer camp.
Here’s how to silence the Roger Beep on that series of Motorola Radios
To turn talk confirmation off, turn your radio off and then back on while
pressing and holding [+].August 5, 2014 at 1:07 am #21087
Darn things are handy as heck even now preshtf when out n abt doing chores on the place. Johnnymac, tks for remindet had been meaning to look up n refresh memory on how 2 do that after the kidswere messin with themAugust 5, 2014 at 3:42 am #21096
Thanks for the tidbit, works on the T4500 series also.
And they can be very handy, but don’t forget that some models send their location when they transmit, and depending on the sophistication of the listeners unit can track you.August 5, 2014 at 1:16 pm #21125
The Motorola makes some good 2 way radios. In a SHTF these will come in handy.August 5, 2014 at 5:41 pm #21142
AHA! I didn’t see that silencer trick in the manual. Good call JohnnyMac! My rating for these radios just went up substantially.
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