Thread: Radio question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Aledo, Texas
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    Default Radio question

    I am interested in getting into radio communications and started doing some research. But am really confused now. Can someone please break down which is which, kinda like "radios for dummies" like me.
    2M
    70CM
    10M
    11M
    CB
    SSB
    Thanks in advance for any help.
    2004 F150 5.4 regcab long box 4X4, 4.5" lift

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Corvallis, OR
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    (2m, 70cm, 10m, 11m) These are all frequency bands specified by their average wavelengths (frequency = 1/wavelength). Different radios/antennas are needed to communicate within each of those frequencies, although multi-band radios do exist. 2m and 70cm are the most common amateur (ham) radio frequency bands used for general communication off-road, at least in the US. Within each of these bands exist regions designated for amateur radio uses as well as those designated for other users. Knowledge of this is one of the many reasons amateur radio requires a license.

    CB - Citizen's Band Radio, is a group of radio frequencies within the 11m band that can be used by anyone without a license, but radios are more limited in power than amateur radio.

    SSB - Single Side Band - essentially a type of signal encoding, in reality for users of radios this doesn't matter (most radios pre-select the type of signal for the frequency you set), but will affect the ability of a signal to propagate and penetrate through noise.

    Clear as mud?

    Amateur radio allows more power and use of a broader range of frequencies which increase your ability to be heard father away, which also translates into clarity over the radio. As you learn more about radios, you'll learn when certain bands are more useful, but in the end for most of our uses it depends on who we can expect to be listening.

    CB radio may be more prevalent in your area, but has more power restrictions making it less than ideal from a signal propagation standpoint. Basic CB radios are also typically cheaper than basic Amateur radios.

    It's a trade off in terms of money, clarity, and usage patterns of others in your area. i.e. If everyone else on your trail has a CB, an amateur radio doesn't get you much even if it sounds better.

    Cheers,
    JFS III
    94 FZJ80 - Factory lockers, Front ARB Bumper, Mac mini Carputer, ARB fridge, Toyo M55 255-85/16, Medium Overcamp tent on Thule bars, Sears Platinum Group 31M battery, custom cargo build, York OBA, Midland 75-822, OME Extra Heavy 2.5" lift, 4x4labs dual swingout rear bumper, Superwinch EP9.

  3. #3
    Your mixing bands, services and tossing in a modulation method.
    2M (2 meters or VHF) is a band of amateur radio frequencies. (ham band).
    70cm (sometimes called 440 or UHF) is another band of amateur frequencies
    10m (10 meters) i yet another band of amateur frequencies

    11M ( 11 meters or CB) is a radio service with 40 channels.
    CB (see 11m).

    SSB (single side band) is method to modulate your signal on a radio wave. Both ham and CB and use SSB.

    Ham radio requires a license and testing. CB require no license or test.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Don't forget HF = High Frequency which is below 30mHz and includes 10 & 11 meters.

    Just to add to the confusion...


    I've been into radio for almost 40 years and still get some stuff confused. Welcome & let us know if we can help.
    Stuart
    KA5IVR

    2006 Rubicon = Flame Red w/ Hanson Bumpers, Warn 9.5ti, and a lot of other $'s sucking items.
    aka - "Totally Stock"

  5. #5
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    Oct 2010
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    Is there a radio that can transmit and receive the 2M, 70Cm and 10m bands? I see alot of 10M radios for sale, does anyone really use 10M? Can these radios pickup weather alerts like the Cobra 29xlbt CB? Is there any benefit to a radio that has SSB?
    2004 F150 5.4 regcab long box 4X4, 4.5" lift

  6. #6
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    Radios that support both 2M and 70cm are quite common. I don't believe you will find radios that support either or both of those bands together with 10M.

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by txflyyaker View Post
    Is there a radio that can transmit and receive the 2M, 70Cm and 10m bands?
    Yes; the Yaesu FT-817 is a good example: Yaesu FT-817ND


    Quote Originally Posted by txflyyaker View Post
    I see alot of 10M radios for sale, does anyone really use 10M?
    I've talked all over the world on it, and use it a lot for DX contacts when the band is open and propagating. You have to be in the right part of the solar cycle for the ionosphere to be charged for it to propagate however, which doesn't happen every year. It's been good these past six months or more.


    Quote Originally Posted by txflyyaker View Post
    Can these radios pickup weather alerts like the Cobra 29xlbt CB?
    Many can, it just depends on the model. It's more common with 2M/70CM mobile radios; look for extended receive in the 162 MHz range (where the NOAA weather radio frequencies are).


    Quote Originally Posted by txflyyaker View Post
    Is there any benefit to a radio that has SSB?
    Yes; it's pretty much a requirement if you want to talk long-distance on the HF bands.
    '80 FJ40, '86 FJ60, '07 FJC
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  8. #8
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    I have posted this elsewhere but it may help...
    The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes. - Marcel Proust

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