New Products - Publications - Updates - Upgrades
Compiled by David Zantow N9EWO --
Editor "Passport to World Band Radio" 2000-2009
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Uniden BCD536HP Headphone “Hiss” Fix
Certain “early” samples of Uniden BCD536HP scanner have been reported to suffer from excessive hiss at the headphone jack (will not effect the speaker output). It has been determined to be a wrong component at the factory used in the headphone circuit. This only affects certain units with serial numbers under 2600.
Click here for information on this free Uniden BCD536HP exchange program.
This issue does not effect the BCD436HP handheld version.
Updated Tecsun PL-880 Portable Now Shipping
The new Tecsun PL-880 LW/MW/FM/SW portable receiver is now in stock at Universal. Features 4 bandwidths on AM and 5 on SSB. Powered by a single common 18650 Li-ion rechargeable battery (included) with built-in charging. SSB reception features a 10 hz tuning step. The class AB type audio power amplifier & above average full range speaker produces excellent audio quality for a smaller size receiver. We are shipping units with firmware version 8820 or higher.
Uniden Bearcat BCD436HP and BCD536HP Scanners
The new Uniden BCD436HP handheld and BCD536HP mobile/desktop scanner receivers are creating a buzz. Both models feature a supplied 4 Gigabyte microSD card that hold the entire USA and Canada database of radio systems. Support for APCO Project 25 Phase I and Phase II, X2-TDMA, Motorola, EDACS, and LTR Trunked Radio Systems. Discovery Modes help you find new channels on trunked systems and frequency ranges. Analysis Modes include Band Scope, RF Power Plot, Trunked System Analysis, and EDACS/LTR LCN Finder. Built in digital “off air” recorder with date/time indication/stamping on display. USB PC Connectivity. The BCD536HP even features “Wi-Fi” operation. Printed manual is included.
World Radio TV Handbook 2014
The 68th edition of the World Radio TV Handbook 2014 is now in stock at Universal. Latest information on medium wave, shortwave, and FM broadcasts and broadcasters, propagation predictions and maps. Country-by-country lists of services and broadcasters, winter shortwave frequencies, clandestine section, and international and domestic broadcasts by frequency and language, television broadcasters, broadcaster abbreviations. Receiver reviews include the CommRadio CR-1, SDR WinRadio Excalibur Ultra, AOR AR6000 and AR8200D.
AOR ARD300 Multi-Mode Decoder
AOR has released a "stand alone" Multi-Mode digital voice decoder / demodulator. The model ARD300 will decode dPMR, NXDN and popular amateur digital voice modes from Icom, Alinco and Yaesu. Non-trunked APCO P25 "Phase 1" voice signals can also be decoded. Compatible with AOR legacy receivers AR8600MK2, AR5000(A/+3), AR-ONE and newer AR2300, AR5001D, AR6000. Supports other receivers that have a 10.7MHz or 45.05MHz IF output. (Some may be incompatible and AOR support is limited to AOR receivers).
TYT TH-9000 Series Mobiles
The Part 90 “mono band” TYT TH-9000 series of mobile transceivers provide many features at a great value. 200 memory channels, built in CTCSS and DCS, selectable bandwidths, 3 RF power settings (up to 65 watts) and even a backlit DTMF microphone is included. 5.7 x 1.85 x 7.5" 2.8 lbs. Available in three versions (136-174, 220-260 and 400-490 MHz). The PC50 USB cable and software package is required for programming (Windows XP / 7 or 8).
Icom IC-7800 Firmware Upgrade Ver.3.00.
Icom has made a number of IC-7800 transceiver enhancements that are now available. Firmware Ver 3.00 update includes: Waterfall screens, mouse operation, audio scope and USB flash drives. Voice Recording function is now continuous (until the USB memory is full) and Transmit recording capability has been added. For the entire list of improvements and download instructions including updated manual pages, go to the Icom IC-7800 Firmware Ver 3.00 web page at:
There is no charge for this exciting firmware release.
Bonito “Mini-Whip” Active Antenna Now Available at Universal.
Bonito has made Roelof Bakker’s extremely popular “Mini-Whip” more readily available. At only 4 inches long (10 cm) is one of the smallest active antenna’s on the planet which is excellent for portable operation, mobile and maritime installations as well for outdoor fixed use with restricted covenants. Impressive performance with full 10 kHz to 30 MHz coverage. Requires power of 12 to 15 VDC @ 65 ma (45 ma typical) and connecting cables (both supplied by user). Now in stock at Universal Radio.
Pixel RF PRO-1B Loop Now Available at Universal.
The Pixel Technologies RF PRO-1B magnetic receive loop antenna is now available at Universal Radio. It is only 38 inches in diameter and can be rotated with a user supplied low cost TV rotator. No tuning is required. Coverage is from 50 khz to 30 MHz. Uses F type antenna connections (connection cable is not included).
Alinco DX-SR9T HF Transceiver Now Available
The long awaited
Alinco DX-SR9T HF transceiver is now available (call to confirm availability). Similar specifications to the
Alinco DX-SR8T model with the major addition of SDR capability. With the very attractive price tag along with free SDR software makes for a fantastic value.
Yaesu DR-1 Digital C4FM / FM Dual Band Repeater
Yaesu has announced their highly anticipated DR-1 dual band repeater / base station. The DR-1 handles conventional FM and C4FM digital transmissions with up to 50 watts output. Automatic Mode Select function instantly recognizes whether the signal is C4FM digital or conventional FM and automatically switches to match the received mode. Compatible with the FT-1DR handheld, and FTM-400D mobile, these new transceivers provide digital communications with 12.5 kHz C4FM FDMA.
Whistler Group Acquires GRE America's Intellectual Property
The Whistler Group of Bentonville, Arkansas USA have purchased the intellectual property of GRE America, and have plans to market scanners under the "Whistler" brand. Look for the relabeled clones (with different model numbers) of P25 trunking models: PSR-500, PSR-600 and the PSR-800 as well as the analog trunking models PSR-310 and PSR-410. These are scheduled to appear on the retail market starting in the first quarter of 2014.
Uniden BCD536HP Scanner FCC OET Cleared
A new "desktop" Uniden scanner was FCC OET cleared on September 20, 2013. FCC ID: AMWUB375. Product details and availability date are unknown at this time. Uniden should be releasing information on this upcoming BCD536HP model in mid-November.
Yaesu FTM-400DR “Digital” Dual-Band Available.
The Yaesu FTM-400DR dual band mobile “Digital” transceiver is now available. Compatible with the FT-1D handheld, these new transceivers provide digital communications with 12.5 kHz C4FM FDMA. Image capture and transmit (QVGA 320 × 240) is also possible with the optional MH-85 camera microphone.
Icom IC-7100 Now FCC OET Cleared
The Icom IC-7100 transceiver was cleared by the F.C.C. as of June 25, 2013. FCC ID: AFJ339300. Now shipping.
New TDXONE TD-Q8 Amateur Handheld
The compact and value priced TDXONE TD-Q8 hand held transceiver provides 4 watts in the amateur bands of 144-148 and 430-450 MHz transmit (136-174 MHz and 400-520 MHz receive). It features 128 memories (for each band) and also receives FM broadcast signals. It can be USB port programmed using a Windows based computer (connection cable sold separately, free software).
Yaesu's new FTDX1200 DSP HF transceiver has 160 thru 6 meter amateur transmit coverage that includes 3 roofing filters and a high speed spectrum scope on a 4.3 inch TFT LCD screen. The triple conversion 30 kHz to 56 MHz receiver also features an internal antenna tuner. FFT-1 option board adds AF-FFT scope function, RTTY/PSK31 encode/decode and CW decode. DVS-6 digital voice memory unit can be added for 5 voice channels of 20 seconds each.
Yaesu have discontinued a number of products. Gone from production are the VX-8GR, FTDX9000 (Contest version), FTDX5000 (standard and D versions), as well as the VX-7R handheld (both case colors). Also pricing and availability have now been announced for the FT-1DR Digital HT. It will be sold in a Black and Silver case versions. Two new "mono band" handheld transceivers have been added to the Yaesu lineup. The FT-252 (2 meters) and FT-257 (70cm)
New CommRadio CR-1 Software Defined Communications Receiver
The new CommRadio CR-1 communications receiver is a state-of-the-art "standalone" SDR that does not require a computer. It has a 64 x 128 OLED display with EMI filtered lens. Coverage includes: 500 kHz-30 MHz, 64-260 MHz and 437-468 MHz in AM, SSB, CW, WBFM, NBFM modes. (Longwave 150-500 kHz with reduced performance). The radio may be powered via USB or a 6-18 VDC input, also an internal 2600 mah lithium ion battery option is sold separately. All metal case in a extremely compact size measuring 5.64 W x 2.43 H x 6.10 D inches that weighs 1 lb., 12 oz. Made in the USA. [Apr 18]
Icom IC-R20-06 Wideband Receiver Discontinued. New Sport Configuration Available.
Due to California environmental regulation issues, Icom America has been forced to discontinue the IC-R20-06 wide band receiver. This version included the BP-206 Lithium-Ion battery and charger. It is now available in the new "Sport 06" configuration (IC-R20 Sport-06). Actual IC-R20 receiver is identical, but without the wall charger and the Li-ion battery pack (operates from 3 alkaline AA batteries). The BP-206 battery and BC-153SA-52 wall charger/adapter are still available separately. [Apr 11]
Icom ID-51A Muffled “Transmit Audio” Bug Fixed
For US owners of the Icom ID-51A D-Star handheld transceiver that have experienced “muffled transmit” audio, there is now a fix for the issue. It has been corrected with all new production. The “already fixed” transceivers can be visually detected by the indication of a “white membrane” covering the microphone (hole), visible by looking at the front of the radio. For early units (S/N <5001400) that experience muffled transmit audio, it may be returned to Icom service department for warranty replacement of the membrane. In order to qualify for the warranty repair you will need to confirm your unit serial number prior to shipping it back to Icom. US owners must call Icom America’s service department at 800 306-1380 (Monday - Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM Pacific Time) to verify the serial number and for additional instructions. [Mar 22]
New Uniden BC345CRS “AM/FM Clock Radio” Scanner
Uniden has released the new Bearcat BC345CRS “AM/FM Clock Radio” scanner. This updated “analog” model supports narrowband (filtering) and new channel spacing. Is easily selectable for USA or Canadian bandplans. It features 500 scanning channels in 10 banks. It was cleared by the FCC on January 11th. FCC ID: AMWUB371. This radio came into stock at Universal on February 5th. [Feb 05]
New Firmware for the Uniden BCD996XT
Uniden has released a new firmware update for the BCD996XT scanner. This update improves performance on APCO Project P25 sites operating in Linear Simulcast Mode (LSM). A new updater program is also being used. The version 1.07.03 update for the BCD996XT can be found here http://info.uniden.com/twiki/pub/publish/BCD996XTFirmwareUpdate.html [Jan 28]
New Improved Version: "Sangean WR12" AM/FM Table Receiver
Sangean America is now shipping an improved version of the WR12 AM/FM table radio. Some early samples may suffer from a audio problem and a FM "drift" tuning bug. These issues have now been corrected. USA owners who own a original unit can contact Sangean America directly for an exchange. [Jan 24]
The opinions expressed are those of the editor, and not necessarily those of Universal Radio Inc.