I bought a longer dualband whip about 30cm long also which increases the gain massively. With just two watts these are great little performers. With the longer whip I was able to open EI2KPR Kippure Repeater in Dublin from the centre of Dundalk, a distance of approximately 95 kilometres! OK, I was on the top of the little hill in Ice House park, but it was impressive. I can open the Dundalk 70cm repeater EI7LHR from my home in Drogheda even with the shorter antenna.
These radios can also be used to listen to the commercial FM band. But if you leave the radio on a frequency, say 145.400, and then turn on the radio and listen to, for example RTE1, if someone comes up on 145.400 the radio automatically switches over to two metres so you can have a chat. Very nice.
They also come with a little blue LED light which is handy but runs down the battery much quicker.
They are both very easy to program and it took me just a few minutes the other day to program in 12 memories on the UV-3R which would include 70cm and 2m simplex and repeater frequencies.
|The Baofeng UV-200 with the LED light on|
These are probably the best handhelds I have owned - and I have owned only a few. They are smaller, lighter and cheaper than my previous handheld transceivers and the addition of the commercial FM band plus the little light makes them that bit more useful.
For the more adventurous ham among you the UV-3R is available in a range of colours to suit your tastes! As well as black, they come in blue, red, yellow and camouflage. I'm not why a licenced amateur would want to be clambering around in the woods for, and I'm puzzled about the military colouring, but everyone's different! Below is a photo showing the different colours available. You can buy the UV-3R and accessories at www.490shop.com
VHF/ UHF DUAL-BAND TWO WAY RADIO
- Frequency Range: 136-174 / 400-470MHz
- Dual-Band Display, Dual Freq. Display, Dual-Standby
- Output Power: 2 Watts
- 99 Channels + 1 Emergency Channel
- 50 CTCSS and 104 CDCSS
- Built-in VOX Function
- 1750Hz Brust Tone
- FM Radio (87.0MHz-108.0MHz)
- LED Flashlight
- Large LCD Display
- Hight /Low Power Switchable
- 25KHz/12.5KHz Switchable
- Emergency Alert
- Low Battery Alert
- Battery Saver
- Time-out Timer
- Keypad Lock
- Monitor Channel
- Channel Step: 5/6.25/12.5/25KHz