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VX-180 Lock Up

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May 4, 2006
Messages
193
Location
Charlotte, NC Metro
#1
I just received a "New Old Stock" Vertex VX-180 that is in mint condition - as in never put in service. I have three other VX-180s (they are all VHF), several VX-354s and several VX-459s that I manage, so I am proficient at programming using the CE software. I programmed the "new" 180 with the same program that is in all the other 180s and it is working fine in the other three, but not in the "new" 180.
I have two channels programmed in the scan list, and both use two tone decode. Neither channel is very active, so I rarely miss a call due to the scanner being on the other channel. The "new" radio was sitting scanning last night and correctly activated on one of the two channels. An hour or so later, my pager went off for a call on the other channel, and the radio did not activate. Playing with the radio, it became obvious that none of the switches or the channel selector would do anything. It stayed on the indicated channel no matter where the selector was turned. None of the buttons would work.
Turning power off and back on restored functionality....for a while. An hour or so later, it was locked up again the same way, and again turning the power off and back on fixed it.
I am finding it hard to trust this radio to work correctly. Has anyone ever seen anything like this? I've researched everywhere I can to see if there is a master reset I can try, but have come up empty. Does anyone know if there is a reset function? Anyone have any other ideas of what to try? I'm beginning to think maybe this is why it was never put into service!
Thanks,
Scott
 
Joined
May 4, 2006
Messages
193
Location
Charlotte, NC Metro
#2
Here's one more piece of the puzzle. If I leave the radio in scan mode, the lock up doesn't occur. It only happens when it's sitting on a selected channel for more than a few minutes. I'm wondering if it has something to do with the power saver setting.
I know these are old radios, but does anyone remember any firmware update or anything that may have cured this problem a long time ago?
 
Joined
May 4, 2006
Messages
193
Location
Charlotte, NC Metro
#3
More Info

This is definitely related to the RX power saver circuit. With power saver disabled, the radio never locks up. With it enabled, and set to any of the optional power save ratios, including ABS, it will lock up as soon as the radio has been quiet long enough for the the power save to start shutting the receiver off.
 

msrettinger

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 8, 2012
Messages
31
Location
Oelwein, Iowa
#4
I have found that you have to disable the battery saver on any channels that have the 2 tone decode on them. We had some radios that were missing pages sometimes. Since disabling the battery saver on those channels, we haven't missed a page. We have never had a radio "lock up" as you describe. Not sure what is going on there.
 
Joined
May 4, 2006
Messages
193
Location
Charlotte, NC Metro
#5
I have both the UHF and VHF versions of the VX-180 and have had both programmed for frequencies with two tone decode, and have always - until now - had the RX Power Save set to ABS, and never missed a page. I know because I've also always had a Minitor pager from all the services I've been a member of. It must depend on what kind of system is doing the encoding and probably the phase of the moon as to whether the radio will wake up quickly enough to decode. Anyway, all of the other radios have firmware versions in the 1.xx range. This one has the highest version at 2.01, so maybe they tried to fix something and screwed up the power save feature. Guess I'll just leave the RX ABS off on this radio. Thanks for the confirmation that it works for you.

Scott
 

cmjonesinc

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 25, 2011
Messages
671
#6
I have found that you have to disable the battery saver on any channels that have the 2 tone decode on them. We had some radios that were missing pages sometimes. Since disabling the battery saver on those channels, we haven't missed a page. We have never had a radio "lock up" as you describe. Not sure what is going on there.
X2 on this. I would always miss pages and that solved it for me too.
 
Joined
May 4, 2006
Messages
193
Location
Charlotte, NC Metro
#7
I can completely understand how this decode problem could happen on some systems. My real problem is the complete lock-up of the radio when the ABS kicks in. Cannot change channels or use any of the buttons (A, B, C, or side buttons). Interestingly enough PTT still does work. Power down and back up...everything is fine until ABS kicks in again.
Scott
 
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