UHF Expert Please...


I currently have a 1-watt handheld UHF 40 channel CB. I am now contemplating updating to a 5-watt handheld 80 channel unit.

I am looking for a CB with at least the following features - 5-watt, ability to charge the handset in the vehicle 12v socket and the ability to connect to an 'external' antenna (one mounted on my bullbar) when in the vehicle.

I have done a bit of research and have found the following - UNIDEN UH076SX-NB, GME TX6200 and ICOM IC-41W.

A) Will either of these meet my criteteria above?

B) Does anyone know which is "the better/best" unit?

C) Are these compatible with the 'old' 40 channel units? (ie - will I be able to receive and talk to a 40 channel unit)?

All advice welcome.


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Reply By: Member. Rob M (QLD) - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 08:08

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 08:08
Hi John,

I have just purchased a GME TX6100 handheld UHF on Ebay.
It appears to be a little smaller than the TX6200 but still is 5 Watt output.
It has a rechargable battery using a cradle, which I bought a 12volt cable for at around $25?
The trader I bought mine from also supplied an adapter to suit an external aerial at no cost. The radio also came with a combined microphone and speaker which I believe is standard. The first 40 channels are exactly the same as your current radio.
I'm no UHF expert but I hope this helps.
Rob M

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AnswerID: 486527

Reply By: Member -Ted - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 08:08

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 08:08

Why dont you compare the data sheets for each of these radios to see if they meet your criteria?

AnswerID: 486528

Follow Up By: myname - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 09:01

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 09:01
I fully understand where you are coming from Ted. Reading data sheets may give the poster some more info about his radio.

But then again it can be an awful waste of time to someone who has no idea of electronics or radios.

I think it would have a heap been more helpful Ted, to just answer his question or not post. Maybe as a third option, you could pass him some information on how to read the data sheets and what to look for to enable him to answer his own question for himself.

A tad rough on Johnny I think mate.
FollowupID: 761778

Follow Up By: Member -Ted - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 14:03

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 14:03

From his post he seems to know what he wants so it should be just a matter of ticking boxes from the spec sheets.
Are you assuming that he has "no idea of electronics or radios" ? Not sure how you would know that.
As for which radios are the best I think its a bit like the "engel-waeco" thing, some people like Uniden others like GME, I run a GME and it has been faultless in all my travels.
The 80 channel radios have 12.5Khz spacing whereas the 40 has 25Khz, channel 41 falls between ch 1 & 2 on the 40 channel so the 40 may cause interferance to the 80 if the FM deviation is not adjusted correctly and vice versa depending on the distance between the two radios.
The 40 ch receive audio may sound "thin" with a transmission from an 80ch radio but would still be OK.
I would not like 5 watts of UHF energy right next to my head with a hand held, they say mobile phones can cause problems and they are only milliwatts!!!

My 2bobs worth.

FollowupID: 761807

Follow Up By: PJR (NSW) - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 16:13

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 16:13
Hi Ted

I agree with you about the 5 watts uhf next to the brain. No way here either. That's where the microphone with the speaker capabilities comes in handy.

I do not know the radios personally so I cannot comment further on those three. However I do suggest that he gets a separate low wattage hand held as well as a vehicle based model in the car. Does wonders when stuck or reversing etc.

You should read that whole "assumption" sentence of mine again because you homed in on only part of my comment.

I was quite concise in what I said. I read it like someone telling me to compare two cake recipies. I am not a pastry chef. I know what flavour means but thats about it. I cannot do anything other than cook bacon, steak and sausages.

I am familiar with what the specifics in a radio's technical specifications mean and can only sympathise with someone untrained in electronics being told to go and read them. Or in your case being asked why didn't he read them.

If he knew what they meant, then he would have his answer, so why post!
FollowupID: 761816

Reply By: Member - Troll 81 (QLD) - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 08:50

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 08:50
I have had 2 Uniden hand-held failed on me now and won't be buying another Uniden hand-held, they lasted about 4 years. I have 2 Uniden's in the car and they have been faultless, one more than 5 years old.
AnswerID: 486532

Reply By: olcoolone - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 09:07

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 09:07
I would go the GME or Icom and make sure it is built on a commercial radio platform TX6200 or IC-41 s or w).

I still prefer a proper vehicle mounted radio over a hand held..... we carry two GME TX6200 handhelds + the vehicle mounted Icom.

If going to a handheld you might also want to conceder the optional speaker/microphone set up.

80 channels is not all it's made up to be...... some (most) 40 channel UHF radios have problems receiving the 80 channel radio due to the 80 channel radios using narrow band transmission..... the audio is very low on a 40 channel radio that uses wide band receiving when receiving the 80 channel radio.

The next thing is Seeing the 80 channel radios use narrow band, when you receive a transmission on your 80 channel radio form some 40 channel radio that transmits on wide band the transmission is very broken and hard to understand.

We had these problems with our new Icom 80 channel radio when 80 channels first came out whilst travelling with a group of ten 4x4's..... the way we resolved it was to get it reprogrammed with the first 40 channel using wide band and the other 37 channels using narrow band.

So much for the government saying they are compatible to each other..... this has turned into a big issue for the trucking, earthmoving, construction and farming community.

AnswerID: 486534

Reply By: MEMBER - Darian, SA - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 09:26

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 09:26
I have a GME 5W hand held, an Icom in-car unit and a twin set of 2W Uniden handhelds. GME and Icom are regarded widely as top shelf (mine have been excellent). I also have a twin set of Uniden 80CH 2W handhelds - never seen so many features - functions and accessories galore - 240 charger, 2 types of 12V chargers, lapel mike/speakers, voice operated transmit etc etc...... they have been great too, but I'd need to use them a lot more to pass judgement on value for $. If you buy from a retailer, your local store would have the good oil on your queries re the features. You might consider Prestige Communications in WA too - great prices, free delivery on most (I'm not affiliated in any way - just a happy customer).
AnswerID: 486536

Reply By: Holden4th - Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 18:33

Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 18:33
The issue for you will be the antenna and how it matches to the handheld. I've just added an antenna to the UHF that was in my truck when I bought it and based on this process I realiesed the power available from your handset will be the issue. My in car UHF connects to my 12 volt battery. This gives the power to both send and receive and while you might have a great antenna on your vehicle, if it's not receiving the necessary power then it's next to useless. You won't get the range that you would with an in car set.

Based on price for both 5 watt handheld and in car you might as well keep the 1 watt for close communication and buy an in car model for everything else.
AnswerID: 486669

Reply By: Member - JohnBee (VIC) - Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 19:15

Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 19:15

Thanks for all the responses and advice. Certainly gives me food for though.

I will make a decision over the next few days.

Cheers - John
AnswerID: 486675

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