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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 09-08-2010, 2:27 PM
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Default Motorola Spectra Narrowband

I have a buddy of mine who is trying to make me buy his Motorola Spectra VHF 110 Watt Radio. I was looking for a radio that I can transmit/receive on ham frequencies and receive only on Railroad Channels. I did some searching and I realized that the Spectra is not Narrowband Capable. I know the narrowband won't affect in the ham radio band, but it will affect on the Railroad Radio band. My buddy claims that it won't affect on listening after the 2013 deadline on the Railroad Channels (160-161 MHz).

Do you guys have your own input of what will happen if I try to listen to the Narrowband Frequencies with a Wideband Radio?
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Old 09-08-2010, 2:34 PM
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The only difference you'll hear is perhaps softer audio due to the narrowbanding.

Basically, take 46-46 on the RR and put another channel between it and 47-47. If a RR nearby you is using that said channel in the middle, then your Spectra will hear the audio on both 46-46 and 47-47.

PM me if you want more info.

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Old 09-08-2010, 6:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by franks_ham View Post
The only difference you'll hear is perhaps softer audio due to the narrowbanding.

Basically, take 46-46 on the RR and put another channel between it and 47-47. If a RR nearby you is using that said channel in the middle, then your Spectra will hear the audio on both 46-46 and 47-47.

PM me if you want more info.

Regards,

-Frank C.
KG6NLW
Thanks for the feedback. Actually I got a feedback from Craig, a radio technician expert from Day's Wireless Center in Everett. He's the expert into Motorola Radios and knows about the FCC Narrowband Situation very well.

Anyways, the radio technician expert told me that if I'm using my spectra to transmit/receive on 2m ham radio bands (144-148 Mhz) and receive/listen only on railroad band(160-161 Mhz), he said to me that the spectra will do just fine if I continue to do that operation. 2m ham radio bands are not subjected to FCC Narrow band rule, so you can transmit it on wide band setting between 144Mhz and 148Mhz. I'm a ham radio operator so it should do just fine as long I program my radio to set up that way. After all, I'm only allowed to transmit between 144-148 Mhz. It will just act like a scanner until you push that PTT button. That's what he told me.
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Old 09-08-2010, 7:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewkim View Post
Thanks for the feedback. Actually I got a feedback from Craig, a radio technician expert from Day's Wireless Center in Everett. He's the expert into Motorola Radios and knows about the FCC Narrowband Situation very well.

Anyways, the radio technician expert told me that if I'm using my spectra to transmit/receive on 2m ham radio bands (144-148 Mhz) and receive/listen only on railroad band(160-161 Mhz), he said to me that the spectra will do just fine if I continue to do that operation. 2m ham radio bands are not subjected to FCC Narrow band rule, so you can transmit it on wide band setting between 144Mhz and 148Mhz. I'm a ham radio operator so it should do just fine as long I program my radio to set up that way. After all, I'm only allowed to transmit between 144-148 Mhz. It will just act like a scanner until you push that PTT button. That's what he told me.
Sure, and you can program any frequency to be receive only so you won't be able to accidentally transmit anyway.
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Old 09-08-2010, 9:00 PM
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Also with the spectras, you can make it so the TX frequency is something random for the AAR section! An example is my radio. Channels 2-97 are AAR. So everyone of those channels has a MURS frequency programmed in as the TX. So if I'm ever questioned and asked to key up (whoever asks me to do that is asking for it!) it won't come up on the AAR at all.

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-Frank C.
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Old 09-09-2010, 8:02 AM
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Do you turn the power down to 2 watts on the channels that transmit on MURS?
Do you have the bandwidth set properly for the MURS channel you are transmitting on?

Just make the RR channels receive only.
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Old 09-09-2010, 8:48 AM
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Not sure is the Spectra can handle the frequency to 4 decimal points; i.e., 160.4175 most of the radios of that vintage will only accept three decimal points such as 160.425 MHz. You may want to verify this prior to puchasing the radio. Also verify that the problem with the electrolytic capacitors has been addressed.
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Old 09-09-2010, 2:00 PM
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Originally Posted by rfradioconsult View Post
Not sure is the Spectra can handle the frequency to 4 decimal points; i.e., 160.4175 most of the radios of that vintage will only accept three decimal points such as 160.425 MHz. You may want to verify this prior to puchasing the radio. Also verify that the problem with the electrolytic capacitors has been addressed.
I've been able to punch in that 4th decimal point before on my spectra. It has an MLM of 6.15 iirc, so I'm not sure if it'd be the newer MLM's only or not that can do that. I've never had less than 6.0 on the MLM.

+1 on making sure the capacitors are taken care of!


Quote:
Originally Posted by jhooten View Post
Do you turn the power down to 2 watts on the channels that transmit on MURS?
Do you have the bandwidth set properly for the MURS channel you are transmitting on?

Just make the RR channels receive only.
AFAIK there is no "Receive only" on the spectras, and I've been dealing with them for a few years now, I don't ever key up the MURS so it really doesn't matter.

Regards,

-Frank C.
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Old 09-09-2010, 2:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by franks_ham View Post
AFAIK there is no "Receive only" on the spectras, and I've been dealing with them for a few years now, I don't ever key up the MURS so it really doesn't matter.

Regards,

-Frank C.
My 1991 vintage VHF Spectra (not sure of the MLM version though) was programmed to receive only out of the 2m band. Sure enough, on those modes if I key the mike, it bonks at me and the TX light stays off.
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Old 09-09-2010, 3:51 PM
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Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 3_1_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/528.18 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile/7E18 Safari/528.16)

All of my Spectra's are 1994+ so I'm not sure. Either way I'm always careful with programming and thats what the OP wanted to know, if you could be careful about TX and narrowband.

Regards,

-Frank C.
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Old 09-09-2010, 9:33 PM
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I've got black label and white label Spectras, NOAA channels in all of them are programmed receive only. Enter B in the Tx frequency field and hit enter. The Tx freq will read Blank.

Yes you can enter a frequency to five decimal points. No it will not take the splinter channels.
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Last edited by jhooten; 09-09-2010 at 9:37 PM..
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:39 AM
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@ the original poster - I'm taking it that this isn't a Astro Spectra, but just a "regular" one. If you come across any Astro Spectra's the will do narrowband. I've got a VHF Hi Astro Spectra with a W5 head. Spectra is awesome radio !!
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Old 09-10-2010, 10:01 PM
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Regular Spectras can have a receive only channel, just type BLANK into the TX freq in RSS.
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Old 01-13-2013, 9:39 PM
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As the previous reply said all you have to do it type "Blank" in the Tx Frequency box. For those who don't want to type more than they have to just typing "B" then pressing enter will do the trick. (Source: I did it just before typing this)
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Old 01-13-2013, 9:56 PM
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He's probably figured it out in the 2+ years since he asked the question.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:02 PM
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And your probably right. I figured out as much as I ask questions on this site I figured if I can answer in some way I should. Trying to give where I have taken so much.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:14 PM
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Quote:
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I figured out as much as I ask questions on this site I figured if I can answer in some way I should. Trying to give where I have taken so much.
God forbid someone actually post some useful information, instead of a lousy attempt to bash someone for contributing.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:17 PM
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Actually the time bomb caps in that radio have probably since destroyed it.
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Old 01-14-2013, 5:29 PM
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Quote:
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Actually the time bomb caps in that radio have probably since destroyed it.
Mike
Exactly, but we fix them here and have a one year warranty on our work and parts.
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Old 02-20-2013, 6:16 PM
   
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Thumbs down yeah...

but other people read these feeds too so a 2+ year post isnt frowned upon
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