Dual band or Quad band for the same price?

Discussion in 'Survival Communications' started by hitchcock4, Oct 21, 2015.

  1. hitchcock4

    hitchcock4 Monkey++

    Short background. Recently got my ham license (Technician) and have a Baofeng HT to start with. Just getting going on the gear, and I know someone here will be able to lend a hand.

    I was reading 2 meter radio recommendation | Survival Forums the other day, and looking on eBay at various prices. [Probably won't purchase on eBay, as I don't like to purchase items over $150 there. But it is a good place to do some research.]

    I thought, why purchase a 2 band radio if I can get a Quad band in the same price range? In the $250 to $300 price range, one car get a transceiver for the car. I will be using this for the home and getting a separate 13.7V power supply for operation when at home.

    Here are the two radios that I am comparing. [I'm open to others, but these two are a good comparison as the Yaesu is a well known name for reliability.]

    Yaesu FT-7900R

    TYT TH-9800 PLUS

    Keep in mind that I am likely to use this as a home base radio, as I am unable to spend $500 to $1200 on a home transceiver like a Kenwood. Later on, I suppose I could install this in a car if I get a home setup. Or, if I like the radio that I purchase here well enough, purchase a second for the car.

    So, some specific questions.
    1. Anyone own a TYT radio that would care to comment on its performance?
    2. Anyone that uses 10 meter or 6 meter care to comment? I understand that 6 meter band varies in transmission (due to sunspots, according to Wikipedia and other websites).
    3. In a true SHTF scenario, wouldn't it be best to have a radio like this that "does it all"?
    Thanks! I appreciate the help.
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2015
  2. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    I have to agree with Tobit, FM on 6 and 10 is not too useful. Go with the dual bander and transplant it to the car when you get a base rig for the house. Or, get two dual banders, one for the house and one for the car. There aren't, as far as I know, any base rigs that can deal with VHF and UHF that are in anything close to affordable. For VHF and UHF nets, you'll want to sit in the comfort of the shack rather than parking your carcass in the car for the duration of the net.
    Marck likes this.
  3. stg58

    stg58 Monkey+++ Founding Member

    The jury is still out on the glut of cheap chinese ham radios coming in as it relates to quality and reliability.
    Marck likes this.
  4. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    Because I have been in the Comms Biz for 5+ decades, I choose to go with a more expensive Dual Bander.... Kenwood T-MOBILE-D710a.... I have three, one in the Cabin, Base Station, one in the Rhino660, and now one in AlaskaChick's Red Toyota 4X4 Pickup Truck, that lives in Seattle, and is our FlatLand transportation. These are Full Service Vhf/Uhf Dual Band/ Dual Tx-Rx with APRS, and Packet Digital 9600/1200 Radios, With 1000 Memory Channels, and can be "Opened" for Fukk Frequency Coverage. (Not Legal but can be done)
  5. techsar

    techsar Monkey+++

    ...or go with the Yaesu FT-8800, which has two receivers and will allow both "sides" to be monitored simultaneously, or used as a cross-band repeater. As has been mentioned FM on 6 & 10 is not in high demand...and the Chinese knock-offs are still questionable on reliability and longevity.
    They are cheap for a reason ;)
    GhettoPass likes this.
  6. AD1

    AD1 Monkey+++

    While I defer to to old guy BT ;)
    , i would suggest you get a basic radio and work hard on your general. Then buy a all band capable UHF/VHF HF radio. Dont screw with a multiband HT.
  7. hitchcock4

    hitchcock4 Monkey++

    OK, I think you guys have convinced me.
    - Stay away from the unknown.
    - Quad band not as useful as I would think
    - Study up for the General exam.

    So, let's say I am willing to put up money for the FT-8800R from Yaesu. [More pricey than I originally wanted, but hey.]
    I can see a huge value in the cross band repeater if the situation arose.

    So, if you can bear with me, more questions.
    1. Any recommendations on a shop in the USA for the FT-8800R. Reliable source, but not too expensive.
    2. Sales -- do ham radios go on sale for Black Friday in November? If I can save a few bucks...
    Thanks for all the great advice -- I'm glad I asked, since I can build on knowledge already here.

    stg58 and kellory like this.
  8. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey

    Ham Radio Outlet has it in stock at $370 and has a dozen or so brick and mortar stores scattered around the country: YAESU FT-8800R | 2M/440 DUAL BAND MOBILE TRANSCEIVER

    EDIT: Note that the quad band 8900R is $390 at HRO. 20 BUX gets you two more bands. While the 2 band version is likely adequate I can see the advantage of the 10 and 6 meter bands when using this as a base station if for nothing less than being able to listen in at longer distances in the event of a widespread disaster.

    If you buy online, consider Amazon and use the SM referral link to help support this site
    Survivalmonkey.com is an Amazon.com affiliate | Survival Forums
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2015
    Ganado, Yard Dart and hitchcock4 like this.
  9. bpaintx

    bpaintx Monkey+++

    Some places will run sales, not necessarily black friday and occasionally Yaesu may offer rebates on some radios, you just have to watch the sites. I am installing a 8800 this weekend in my Jeep.
    Marck and 3M-TA3 like this.
  10. stg58

    stg58 Monkey+++ Founding Member

    While the points on 6 meter FM are right I have worked 6 meters contacts on Alinco DR-M06 with 20 watts thousands of miles away into Canada and all over the USA during band openings and regularly 100's away.
    Marck likes this.
  11. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey

    Years ago we got some routers (you would recognize the brand) from a small business vendor that turned out to be gray market. From the outside you couldn't tell any difference, and they would run IOS like any genuine router. Since we work with the manufacturer on a daily basis we found out before any got in production. Source turned out to be Chinese manufacture and we were told later that they had been modified to compromise security while appearing from all other aspects to be genuine.

    Be careful who you buy from when it comes to your security...

    I wouldn't trust any Chinese designed and manufactured equipment for SHTF, especially for data and communications. As learning tools or toys, perhaps. Remember, China is not an ally. They only do business with is to improve their own position until they can eventually deal with us (the US us) militarily. As far as I'm concerned they are simply baking us a cake loaded with arsenic.
    Marck, Yard Dart and stg58 like this.
  12. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    A factoid of moderate interest, maybe, but a share of Kenwood and other premium mfrs of radio gear build their stuff in China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Singapore as well as (possibly) other Asian sources. Where the designs originate, I do not know.

    Another item of interest is the testing that the ARRL does when evaluating rigs tends to show up things that are not supposed to be there in the transmission of rf. That might not close the door on possible bugs, but tends to make things trustworthy. Both Baofeng and Wouxian gear has passed the tests on hf, vhf, and uhf amateur gear. Dunno about gmrs or the other stuff.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2015
    Marck, 3M-TA3, kellory and 1 other person like this.
  13. stg58

    stg58 Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Yes Chicom knockoffs one friend bought 2 sets of Bose headphones they looked perfect even had the cards to hand out for people who asked about them I have a real set of Bose headphones (I think) and side by side there was no difference the only thing is the noise canceling did not work.
    Marck likes this.
  14. RangerRick

    RangerRick RangerRick-North Idaho Oath Keeper

    I am having my fire radio converted to 6 and 10 meter and as a bonus I found two new 10 meter hand held units in my closet. I will use these around the back 40, no interference. I also run 2 meter and 70 cm in my truck and car.
    I have 3 Boafeng radios, One in my Search and Rescue Pack, Fire Pack and Emergency Response Team Pack .I just bought 20 more Baofeng radios for the local group. Been using them since they came out and I like them. No issues and if lost or broken , all is well.
  15. Idahoser

    Idahoser Monkey+++ Founding Member

    as always the first question I have to ask is "what do you want to use it for"?
    6 and 10 FM might not be popular today, but if your group standardized on it, it would be a little less easy to find your chat than if you were on 2m.
    I'd also say your price comparison is a big stretch since you'd have to buy two of the Chinese one if you want to say they're comparable in reliability.
    I personally like having all mode capability on all bands. Just because you're not yet legal to transmit on a band is no reason not to plan ahead and get one of the all-band, all-mode rigs, you're going to need one anyway later. Listening to HF will help motivate you to upgrade.
    And sure, a dedicated dual band FM in the car is fine too.
    kellory, BTPost and William Warren like this.
  16. jlutzcurtis

    jlutzcurtis Monkey

    I think you should go with Yaesu FT-7900R. It's well know for it's reliability and I prefer it.
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