Sunday, March 19, 2006

Choosing Rigs (BABIES)

Need Help in Choosing Your First Radio?
RADIOS: There are so many to choose from. For the new Ham, it would be best to stick with a reliable, time proven, name brand: (Alphabetical Order) Alinco, Icom, Kenwood, Yaesu
Base, Mobile, Mobile used as a base or an HT (Hand Held Transceiver)???
It all depends on your lifestyle and budget. If you are on the go a lot and on a budget, an HT might be a good choice. A 2 meter or 2 meter/440 might be your best choice. If you want to use it in your vehicle, a 1/4 or 5/8ths wave magnetic mount antenna for the outside of the vehicle might be the best bet. You can also get a second antenna for home use. More on the antennas later. The good thing about buying an HT is that is it portable. The drawbacks are that they have limited power output, and batteries must be recharged.
Base Station: Most new Hams start out with 2 meter operation. A fancy base station has a lot of options, but most are not necessary to Hams who use 2 meters. They are also expensive and are rarely used by new Hams.
Mobile radios: An excellent choice for permanent mounting in a vehicle and what many experienced Hams use on a daily basis while in their vehicle. There are few drawbacks and many advantages. The Mobile runs off the car battery (and the cables should run directly to the battery for best performance), the Hand Microphone is easy to use and, most of all, there is a lot more power available than with an HT. The only problem one might encounter is "noise" from the vehicle electronics, which can usually be resolved with the installation of a commercially made filter.
Mobile used as a Base: This is the rig you see the most for in-home use. It has the power needed, the features most used and runs from a 12 Volt power supply. This is also a good option as, if the A/C power fails, a 12 Volt backup battery can be used to continue transmitting in emergency situations, a primary use for Ham Radio. I have used this type of rig for years and have yet to find a drawback. You will need a 12 Volt power supply: For 2 meters, a 12 - 20 amp filtered supply should do very well.
SUMMARY: If you are on the go and will operate some from home on a tight budget, a 5 Watt HT Hand Held is your best starter radio. If you will operate from your home most of the time, a Mobile used as a Base is the best choice. New Hams with more resources should by an HT, a Mobile used as a Base and a Mobile for each vehicle. This is what most Hams end up doing during the first years. Remember, you still need a power supply and antennas!
Tip: New Hams with young children should be careful to not let kids play with the new "toy". Disconnecting the Microphone works well.



At 1:34 AM, Blogger AlterinG Abhishek said...

dexter was there..
who is dexter?

At 12:13 AM, Anonymous dexter said...

Main hu dexter....

The great telecom engineer...

pride on India.. not a desh droohi like Tau....

At 11:14 PM, Blogger Anil said...

Nice Blog..

I always wanted to get into amateur radio stuff as a kid..

Happy Blogging,


At 2:05 AM, Blogger vimal chauhan said...

Wonderful blog & good post.Its really helpful for me, awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!

Dream House


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