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Boefeng GT-3

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MikeSD

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I have four GT-3 Mark II radios. Bought the first two, then decided I wanted to get spare batteries. Batteries were nearly the same price as the whole radio. I found a GT-3 online, that included a spare battery. Price was only $4 more than the radio and battery. So I bought 2 more radios, that included 4 batteries, and the total cost was less than just buying 4 batteries. Now I have spare radios. :)

But there is one gotcha. All are Mark II radios. On the first two, I was able to change the power on message. The second two, I can't change it. I set the msg in the "other" form, and it seems to program ok. But when I power off and back on, it's the default.

All 4 radios are using the same programming file. I am using the Boefeng GT-3 programming software. Any idea why 2 won't allow programming the power on msg, while the first two do? Weird!
 

jonwienke

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Check firmware versions. Different versions may behave differently, and writing an image created from a different firmware version can have all kinds of weird effects, or brick the radio.

There's generally a separate setting to indicate whether you want to use the default power-on display or the custom one. The format varies by brand and model, but there are usually 2 settings for startup display, a text box, and some kind of check box or menu dropdown.
 

W8RMH

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It sounds like they have different firmware.
 

MikeSD

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All four say firmware is BFB297. I'm using the software that's for this version (i.e. greater than 291).

I also tried CHIRP by specifying it as a UV-5R like some have done. That works, but the msg is left justified. On my 1st two, it's centered.

Something is not consistent between these radios. But what can you expect from Chinese radios for $30 ;) The frequency stuff seems to program ok, but the "other", including msg is hit or miss. Sometimes it programs, sometimes it doesn't. two are center justified, two are left justified. Seems to like being programmed only once. I tried reseting things and reprogrammed but no go. Weird!
 
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jonwienke

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If you read from the radios in CHIRP, are "Firmware Message 1" and "Firmware Message 2" identical among all radios in the "Other Settings" tab?
 

MikeSD

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Weird!

Seems to program fine with CHIRP, as a UV-5R.

Another thing CHIRP tells me is the firmware are reported different between radios. If I do a power on firmware check, they all show BFB297. But when I load retrieve radio settings, using CHIRP the firmware are reported differently.

Radio 1: BFB297 (by power on), 1FB297 (using CHIRP)
Radio 2: BFB297 (by power on), 1FB297 (using CHIRP)
Radio 3: BFB297 (by power on), BFB297 (using CHIRP)
Radio 4: BFB297 (by power on), BFB297 (using CHIRP)

I noticed this, when I tried to program radio 3 followed by 1, using the same file. It wouldn't and said the firmware was different. So, I uploaded the info from radio, using CHIRP, modified the channels and rewrote it to radio and it worked.

Weird that when I press 3, and power on, all four report BFB297 as firmware.
 

MikeSD

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So there is a firmware difference.
CHIRP thinks there is. ;)

When you press 3, and power on, the radio reports the firmware. ALL four report BFB297.
But when CHIRP loads from Radio, to PC, it thinks the Firmware is 1FB297

It might just be an issue with CHIRP. I would think the radio would know for sure. The VIP programming software doesn't report the firmware anywhere, so the only way I can get independent verification is by the radio itself and it say FBF297.

I have considered that maybe there is a way to change the firmware version in CHIRP but it's grayed out so looks like it sticks with what it thinks the version is, whether right or wrong. The other things is I can't use CHIRP at all, unless I say it's a UV-5R, which other people say works.

Anyway, there's lots of room for operator error here. ;) I do know that I can't change the message using the VIP software, for some reason. That software is very buggy, best I can tell. Too many odd behaviors.

Even though it might be risky, CHIRP seems to be the most reliable, if I just say the radios are UV-5R and go with whatever firmware version it thinks is in the radio. I have 4 files, one for each radio, to account for different firmware. Seems to work well doing that.
 

KD8DVR

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CHIRP thinks there is. ;)

When you press 3, and power on, the radio reports the firmware. ALL four report BFB297.
But when CHIRP loads from Radio, to PC, it thinks the Firmware is 1FB297

It might just be an issue with CHIRP. I would think the radio would know for sure. The VIP programming software doesn't report the firmware anywhere, so the only way I can get independent verification is by the radio itself and it say FBF297.

I have considered that maybe there is a way to change the firmware version in CHIRP but it's grayed out so looks like it sticks with what it thinks the version is, whether right or wrong. The other things is I can't use CHIRP at all, unless I say it's a UV-5R, which other people say works.

Anyway, there's lots of room for operator error here. ;) I do know that I can't change the message using the VIP software, for some reason. That software is very buggy, best I can tell. Too many odd behaviors.

Even though it might be risky, CHIRP seems to be the most reliable, if I just say the radios are UV-5R and go with whatever firmware version it thinks is in the radio. I have 4 files, one for each radio, to account for different firmware. Seems to work well doing that.
ALL Baofengs stopped showing firmware on the power up sequence at BF297. Only Chirp can read the real firmware version, now. This is a well-documented fact.

Sent from my LG-D631 using Tapatalk
 

KD8DVR

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Additionally...Chirp, as a safety feature, won't push a codeplug from one firmware revision to another. You'd have to export radio settings and then import them into a New codeplug.

Sent from my LG-D631 using Tapatalk
 

nd5y

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It's not a Chirp problem.
Read the links in post #8.
If you try to load a radio image from one firmware version into another you could have problems or create a brick.

The only way to safely way to program multiple Baofeng radios with Chirp is to:
1. Immediately download and save the factory image from each new radio before changing or programming anything.
2. Check the firmware versions in Chirp.
3. Open multiple images in Chirp with each firmware version and one with the programming you want to copy to the new radio(s).
4. Go to the memories tab, select all, copy and paste into the tab of the radio(s) you want to program.
5. Go to the settings tab and set all radios the same way. You can't copy/paste this.
6. Save the modified files with a different name and upload to the radios.
 
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MikeSD

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It's not a Chirp problem.
Read the links in post #8.
If you try to load a radio image from one firmware version into another you could have problems or create a brick.

The only way to safely way to program multiple Baofeng radios with Chirp is to:
1. Immediately download and save the factory image from each new radio before changing or programming anything.
2. Check the firmware versions in Chirp.
3. Open multiple images in Chirp with each firmware version and one with the programming you want to copy to the new radio(s).
4. Go to the memories tab, select all, copy and paste into the tab of the radio(s) you want to program.
5. Go to the settings tab and set all radios the same way. You can't copy/paste this.
6. Save the modified files with a different name and upload to the radios.
That's exactly what I'm doing, except I didn't save initially, since I wasn't using CHIRP at the beginning. But did factory resets, nothing was bricked, and then made individual images for each radio, even if identical version. So, I have working master files now, for each radio.

All seems good now, except I still have to trick it by saying it's a UV-5R. There is no GT-3 radio, in my list. Only the GT-3WP but that says the amount of data is wrong. UV-5R works fine though (I think).

Q: Anyone know what the 6+PO message means? Returns 160406N
 

nd5y

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Factory reset from the keypad doesn't reset everything and might not always fix a radio that had a wrong firmware image loaded.

Nobody knows exactly what 6+PO is. It comes from the factory with what looks like a date code but you can change it with Chirp.
 
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