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buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

Old 07-25-2005, 07:57 PM
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Default buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

after 18 years the old uniden bit the dust. i have read the reviews and previous threads. things have changed alot since ive radio shopped. i see dcs in standard. i would also like a radio that scans all channels so that i can hear when others are passing info. also does the the position of other boats appear on your radio when they are talking if they are connected to their gps. sorry if these questions have been answered, im trying to be sure i get the radio that does what i want. thanks in advance.

im leaning toward the standard horizon quest+. will this do what i want?
Old 07-26-2005, 06:45 AM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

DSC is a major selling point and it's not even fully activated yet by the Coasties....

your looking at the upper end if your looking for Full channel scaning!
the Icom 602 can be programed to run full channel scans....

Other Boats positions are not shown unless you have your radio programmed to accept them ...
The Qurest + is a high quailty well priced radio ...

Make sure you use a high end antenna like the Digital 529 series 8' oe the528 4' ers ...

John

Old 07-26-2005, 07:37 AM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

Basically, you want a radio that allows you to see where someone is when they say "this is a really hot spot". Interesting thinking...and probably when you show up, that fisherman is not going to be thrilled, to say the least. If you hear something, use the radio to call the captain and ask where they are....it works one heck of a lot better....

There is little need to scan most of the channels....you need 9,16.22.68,69,71 or something like that...add in sea tow and boatus if you want...but you don't need to scan every channel. I think that all of the current standard and icom radios can be easily set to scan those channels. If you scan too many channels, you'll hear seaTow talking to someone instead of that CG PamPam on 16 or the fishing report you want to hear....etc.

As far as DSC, you do want DSC and you want to hook it to your GPS..it's a safety item and it doesn't matter if the coast guard is monitoring or not....every boat with a newer radio which has DSC is automatically monitoring. If someone hits their DSC distress button, every DSC radio within reception range will start to make very loud noises and show the position of the person in distress on their screen.....that is, if that person hooked the GPS up to their GPS as they should have. And that's why you should hook your's up too.

Old 07-26-2005, 08:51 AM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

I have teh SH Quest and like it a lot. You'd be better off with the "plus". I'd have paid the few extra $'s if I knew. It can scan whatever channels you tell it to. It also has manual, and priority scan. Manual runs through all channels you've programmed, priority scan goes through but bounces back to 16 and 70 to constantly check emergency and dsc freqs. Like this 1-16-70-2-16-70-3-16-70-4-16-70 etc etc.
You can do DSC position requests but it doesn't work as you ask. The other boat must have DSC capability and must "reply" for you to see their position (as far as I can tell). The difference with the plus is this (as I understand it), the regular will receive your position from the GPS and display and transmit it (on demand). The plus will also "send" positions to the GPS so that you do a position request of another vessel and receive a reply, it can plot their position on the GPS.

Of course oyu can program all your buddies with DSC in a list to hail them individually.

Steve
Old 07-26-2005, 01:19 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

All DSC radios can connect to the GPS OUTPUT....so they know the position to send. Some/Most of the DSC radios (including the plus models of standard horizon) also allow you to connect your DSC radio to send coordinates received to your GPS. The catch here is that the GPS must be capable of recognizing the DSC and DSE NMEA sentences....some do and some don't. If the GPS won't recognize the sentences then there is zero value in connecting the radio output to the GPS input.
Old 07-26-2005, 04:04 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

are all gps's cable of hooking up to vhf radio for dcs? wondering about handheld units. lowrance h20? garmin 76?
Old 07-26-2005, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

Simple and reliable Icom 302..Digital antenna, and your good to go for another 18 years. nothing fancy just a solid full featured VHF..
Old 07-26-2005, 09:24 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

SH Quest; best for the $
Old 07-26-2005, 09:38 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

i appreciate the suggestions. would also like to be able to hook up to a backup. can you hook up a lowrance h2o or garmin 76 handhelds to dcs. cant find any info on it.
Old 08-01-2005, 08:39 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

Another vote for the SH Quest+. This year I purchased the Quest+, a Digital Antenna and the Garmin 172C from a THT vendor and I could nto be more pleased with the set up.

I have a list of all my friends MMSI #'s programmed into the VHS and Garmin.

When on the water I can do a position request to find out where my friends are and their location shows up immediately on my Garmin with a boat icon and my friends name. If I later do a position request for the same friend the old location will be replaced by the new location.

When I am on fish I send my location to one friend. He'll know I am on fish and then he tells the others in our group where i am so they all come over to get into the action. Keep in mind I never actually talked to them because I am busy fighting/chasing fish.

The other great feature is I can be on channel 68 and do an individual call to a friend. This will ring their VHF like a phone and it's very loud regardless of the volume setting on their VHF. As soon as they key the mic, regardless of the channel they are on, their VHF automatically goes to the channel I am on (68) and we can communicate.

DSC has revolutionized how I fish and communicate with me friends. In order for it to work for you, your friends must have their VHF connected to their GPS. In order for it to work properly for them, they must have all of the latest gear supporting DSC.

When I get out to a spot I do position requests for my friends just to see who is on the water that day. No need to start calling people on 16 and switching to another channel when they respond.

Good luck with your selection.

/Joe
Old 08-05-2005, 07:08 AM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

Just about all the VHF marine radios on the market have a scanning capability.
Old 08-11-2005, 06:47 PM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

My suggestion would be to check the microphone carefully on any unit you purchase. I purchased an ICOM 502 the end of May this year. It is now in for repair, with the technician stating that the microphone is the probable culprit. He thinks it may have gotten wet. Hard to believe in that we keep the boat in the garage and have taken care to keep water from all of our electronics. He claimed the mike had lead placed inside it so it would feel substantial.

So far, not very happy with ICOM. I think I made a wrong choice. Another thought, wish I had done this myself, would be to ask the repair guy which radio he doesn't see very often.
Old 08-12-2005, 07:10 AM
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Default Re: buying a new fixed mount vhf radio

Another thought, wish I had done this myself, would be to ask the repair guy which radio he doesn't see very often.
He would not see the ones that don't sell a lot. You would need to find what percentage of each brand and model has needed repairs. There wouldn't be any usefull data on new models so that wouldn't be much help either unless you planned on buying a model that had been in production for a few years. Icom and Standard Horizon are the market leaders in VHF marine radios for recreational boats. I doubt there's much difference in quality between the two.

As for the "repair guy", I spent several years as an electronic technician in a rather large shop and I can say from experience that some really know what they are doing and some just struggle along replacing parts here and there until it works.

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