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Base Station Two Way Radios, Power Supplies, Base Microphones & Antenna Solutions

A question that gets asked very frequently is “Do you sell base station two way radios?”. The fact is that, other than talk through radio repeaters and some HAM radios, there are no actual business type base station two way radios – certainly not on the market right now.

Question: But how come I’ve seen base station two way radios in control rooms and taxi offices? Like this one?

Base Station Two Way Radio

If you look closely, you’ll see that this is actually a mobile radio (like one you see in a taxi or lorry) sat on top of a base stand that has a built-in power supply. So when we say there are no base station two way radios, that’s not strictly true – but it does mean that you can build your own (or we can build it for you). Then you simply select a base station microphone instead of a handheld microphone.

We sometimes call this setup a “fixed mobile”, “base station mobile”, a “dispatch radio” amongst many more names. But they all mean a mobile radio with a mains power supply and microphone. Do you have some more names for base station two way radios – let us know in the comments.

So what’s needed to make a base station two way radio?

Here’s a handy list of what you need for a two way radio base station. The principles of this guide can also be applied to CB radios and Amateur (HAM) radios.

1) Mobile Vehicular Type Radio

Motorola Vehicle Type Mobile Radio

Almost all manufacturers of two way radios make a vehicle type mobile radio, as well as portables. All mobile vehicle type two way radios operate on a 12-13.8v D.C. power supply. In order to use this with a mains supply you’ll need a power supply unit (or PSU).

2) Mains to 13.8v Regulated Power Supplies

There are three different types of power supply see below.

2.1) Power Supply Unit (PSU)

Alfatronix makes a very innovative power supply called the Alfatronix AD power supply. The AD is a two way radio stand, power supply and backup battery charger. The model in the picture below is the Alfatronix AD “universal” version. But they make a specific version for the most popular Motorola, Hytera, Kenwood and Icom radios.

Alfatronix AD Universal Power Supply

The main benefit of the Alfatronix AD series power supplies is that they also have a backup battery connection where you can hook up a lead-acid battery. The battery will stay charged whilst the mains is connected. If the mains fails, the backup battery will kick in and power the radio.

2.2) Alternative – Encased Type PSU

There are many encased type power supplies. But the most notable are made by Samlex – see here on our website.

Samlex Two Way Radio PSU

The Samlex Encased style power supplies are fantastic as they position the radio around 1cm (approx. 1/2 inch) above the PSU which reduces the chance of noise from the PSU affecting the radio. You can also position a hand held microphone clip to mount a handheld microphone on the side; or you can choose a base station microphone (as shown below).

3) Selection of Microphone

You can choose one of two different types of microphone. Handheld microphones and Base station microphones. Almost all of the most popular vehicle based two way radios can be purchased without a microphone. That means you can choose the microphone you’d prefer rather than settle for the microphone you’re given.

Base Station Two Way Radio Base Microphone

Here at Radiotronics, we strongly recommend a Base Station type microphone. This is because base station microphones can help reduce fatigue, but also typically develop less faults over time and work out cheaper in the long run.

4) Antenna

The last, and most arguably most important, piece of the puzzle is the Antenna. When using a base station radio, you have two options for antenna.

Short range: If you want only short range; for example, you’re operating via a repeater or you’re operating without a repeater but your other radios are within a few hundred yards, you could consider a short rubber type antenna (shown on the base station unit above). We offer some great “right-angle” type rubber duck stubby and whip antennas from as little as £10+VAT. It’s worth noting that you’re unlikely to get much of a signal and these type of antennas only really work up to a few hundred yards at the most. But they’re ideal for repeater-based radio systems.

Medium to Long Range: If you need long range, then the only real option is a large high-gain outdoor antenna. The cost purely depends on the height and quality of antenna. We can advise further if you provide us a few details when contacting us.

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Hytera Digital Radio Programming Guide

Hytera Logo

Programming radios can be a minefield. So we’ve put together this useful guide to Hytera programming cable and software guide.

Hytera’s DMR digital radios are split into two types, entry tier and mid to high tier. The entry tier is made up of the PD3xx and PD4xx series. The mid to high tier consists of PD500, PD600, PD700, PD900 portable radios, DM615/625 and DM785 series mobile radios and finally RD625 and RD985 repeaters.

Hytera Programming Guide

Radio Name Cable Software Driver
Entry-tier Series Portable Radios
PD355, PD365, PD375 PC69 PD3 / PD4 Software PD3 / PD4 Driver
PD405, PD485 PC76
Mid to High Tier Series Portable Radios
PD505, PD565 PC63 DMR Software DMR Driver
PD605, PD665, PD685, X1p, X1e PC45
PD705, PD755, PD785, PD985 PC38
Mobile Radios
MD615, MD625 PC109
MD665, MD785 PC47
Repeaters
RD625 PC75
RD985 PC47

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New Universal Motorola Analogue Radio Programming Cable

Radiotronics has developed this amazing multi-radio analogue programming cable for almost all analogue Motorola two way radios that removes the need for a Radio Interface Box (RIB) and hence is considered a “RIB-Less Cable”.

> You can buy the Universal Motorola Analogue Programming Cable here

Compatible Radios Include

  • GP-Professional Series: GP340 & GP640
  • GP-Professional Compact Series: GP344 & GP388
  • GM-Professional Series: GM340 & GM640
  • CP-Commercial Series: CP040
  • CM-Commercial Series: CM140, CM340

Programming Software

This cable does not usually include the programming software. The correct software is as follows, which can be purchased from our website separately.

What Else Do I Need?

USB to Serial Adapter? You will need a computer with a serial RS232 port that looks like the image below. If you don’t have an RS232 port on your computer, you will need a USB to Serial cable which we also sell (click here).

> You can buy the Universal Motorola Analogue Programming Cable here

Note: For analogue radios only.

Note 2: Only suitable for programming. Not suitable for upgrading radio firmware.

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Motorola Housing Front Cover Guide

Motorola offer housing (front cover) kits for almost all of their portable and mobile two way radios. But it is an absolute minefield of part codes. For this guide we’ll concentrate on rehousing kits, that’s complete kits, not the components themselves.

This article is work in progress. If you have a radio not listed, email spares@radiotronics.co.uk wth your model of radio.

What’s the difference?

A two way radio housing kit from Motorola usually contains quite a few parts that makes changing the housing relatively simple.

GP Professional Series

Model(s) Part Code RRP Comments
GP320 PMLN4253A £16.80 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
1364279B02 £1.60 GP320 Name Badge
GP330 PMLN5135A £24.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
3380660Z12 £1.00 GP330 Name Badge
GP340
GP640
PMLN4216G £39.50 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
1364279B03 £1.00 GP340 Name Badge
1364279B06 £1.20 GP640 Name Badge
GP360 PMLN4302F £59.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
1364279B04 £1.00 GP360 Name Badge
GP380
GP680
PMLN4304G £122.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
1364279B05 £1.00 GP380 Name Badge
1364279B07 £1.00 GP680 Name Badge
Other Spare Parts
All Models 3680529Z01 £2.10 Volume Knob
3680530Z02 £2.10 Channel Knob
HLN9820A £4.00 Dust cover (also known as 1586059A01)

GP Professional Series (Compact)

Model(s) Part Code RRP Comments
GP344 PMHD4004C £106.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included (There’s also a rare 4-channel version, part code PMHE4024)
3385959Z07 £1.40 GP344 Name Badge
GP644 PMHE4006D £106.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
3385959Z09 £1.40 GP644 Name Badge
GP388 PMHD4005 £77.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included (There’s also a rare 4-channel version, part code PMHD4004)
3386098Z05 £1.40 GP388 Name Badge
GP688 PMHE4007 £230.00 Name Badge & Knobs Not Included
3386098Z09 £1.40 GP688 Name Badge
Other Spare Parts
All Models 3680529Z01 £2.10 Volume Knob
3680530Z02 £2.10 Channel Knob
JMLN4638A £4.00 Dust cover

DP4000 (non-E) Series

The DP4000 (non-E) series has 6 models and does not have a front name badge. The model badge is on the rear of the radio on the top Back Panel above the battery.

As an example, to fully refurbish a DP4400 you would need 1x PMLN5691 housing, 1x 15012092001 back panel, 1x 36012004001 volume knob, 1x 36012005001 channel knob and finally, 1x 15012157001 accessory socket dust cover.

Model(s) Part Code RRP Comments
Housing Kits
DP4400 PMLN5691 £27.00 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015013 £1.20 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4401 PMLN6111 £23.00 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015016 £1.20 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4600 PMLN5690 £91.00 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015014 £1.20 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4601 PMLN6112 £94.00 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015017 £1.20 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4800 PMLN5961 £90.00 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015015 £1.20 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4801 PMLN6116 £94.00 Name Badge Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015018 £1.20 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
Other Spare Parts
All Models 15012092001 £1.50 DP4000 Name Badge Back Panel (Above Battery)
36012004001 £1.40 Volume Knob
36012005001 £1.80 Channel Knob
15012157001 £6.00 Dust cover

DP4000-E (Enhanced) Series

The DP4000-E (Enhanced) series has 6 models and, similar to the non-E series, does not have a front name badge. The model badge is on the rear of the radio on the top Back Panel above the battery.

As an example, to fully refurbish a DP4400e you would need 1x PMLN7323 housing, 1x 15012092001 back panel, 1x 36012004001 volume knob, 1x 36012005001 channel knob and finally, 1x 15012157001 accessory socket dust cover.

Model(s) Part Code RRP Comments
Housing Kits
DP4400e PMLN7323 £19.80 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015052 £1.40 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4401e PMLN7361 £21.50 Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015053 £1.40 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4600e PMLN7453 £43.00 (UHF) Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
PMLN7420 £42.50 (VHF) Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015054 £1.40 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4601e PMLN7452 £44.00 (UHF) Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
PMLN7419 £43.50 (VHF) Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015055 £1.40 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4800e PMLN7426 £56.14 (UHF) Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
PMLN7322 £42.50 (VHF) Name Badge, Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015056 £1.40 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
DP4801e PMLN7427 £42.50 (UHF) Name Badge Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
PMLN7360 £43.50 (VHF) Name Badge Back Panel & Knobs Not Included
33012015057 £1.40 Name Badge for 15012092001 Back Panel
Other Spare Parts
All Models 15012092001 £1.50 DP4000 Name Badge Back Panel (Above Battery)
36012004001 £1.40 Volume Knob
36012005001 £1.80 Channel Knob
15012157001 £6.00 Dust cover

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