Icom R20 - AOR 8200D - Uniden BCD436 - Questions

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payj

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Ok, I understand that the 436 does digital, trunking, P25 II &II etc so my question is what are the other two used for - In lamen terms. I am a newb, but have been doing more reading than posting so please bare with me.

It reaches higher into the frequency range, but with the handset alone what am I able to do with that? Also, the unblocked version of the Icom and aor allow you to access the analogue cell frequency, which is in my research is pretty much fizzled out. So there is no use for that really.

Basically I am trying to figure out what exactly these two radios can add to someone who owns the 436 - if anything, to make either one worth buying as well.
 

Ed_Seedhouse

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Well the R20 is a "general coverage" receiver that covers frequencies well below the A.M. broadcast band to over three gigahertz. It will let you listen to single sideband and CW (Morse code) transmissions that scanners generally don't. I covers the AM and FM broadcast bands and all the HF and VHF/UHF amateur bands and the international shortwave broadcasting frequencies.

If that's what you want, that's one you can buy. What it isn't is a special purpose police/fire/ambulance etc. scanner. It is a general purpose extremely wide band radio. It has, if I recall right, fairly mediocre reviews.

Horses for courses.
 

payj

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Thank you for the reply. What is considered a better receiver? 8200D or the R20?
 

prcguy

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I own an 8200D and have used an R5 and R10 but not the R20. I can say the 8200 non D version is a very good and sensitive VHF/UHF receiver and it does scan and the audio is great, etc. All three receivers will "tune" with a knob or up/down buttons like a SW receiver instead of searching between two predetermined frequencies like a scanner does.

None of the mentioned receivers will do trunking and HF on the 8200, R5 and R10 are grim at best and I suspect the R20 falls into the same category. They will all pick up HF with a fairly small antenna due to the good sensitivity, but put a real HF antenna on them and you have a mess.

Add P25 to the 8200 and now you have worse battery life and a bunch of birdies introduced by the P25 circuitry. I liked my 8200 a lot more before its P25 upgrade.

All the radios you mentioned would be ok if you need HF/VHF/UHF in a very small package for hiking, camping, etc, but if you have a good "scanner" already then get a dedicated HF receiver to compliment it. I can recommend the Commradio CR1 as a very small, good performing HF receiver and its waaay better than the handheld receivers you are looking at.
prcguy
 

AA6IO

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I have the 436HP and the ICOM R20. I agree pretty much with the previous posts. The R20 gives you everything from about 150 Khz to 3000 Mhz, with all modes, but no digital and no trunking. I know some people really like the R20, but the selectivity of the receiver, IMHO, is terrible. I have some FM broadcast stations here in Los Angeles that end up spanning about 800 Khz (I am not joking). I have a Grundig G3 Globe Traveler that cost $99 and blows the R20 away on MW AM sensitivity and FM band selectivity.
That said, the R20 is not bad for listening to airband, analog police/fire, CHP, etc. But that can be done with any scanner, including obviously the 436HP, so I really see no gain. I have to agree with prcguy about a dedicated HF receiver in addition to your 436HP. If your thinking about scanning VHF/UHF, 800, the R20 adds nothing, has a much slower scanning speed, no trunking, no digital.
That said, others may have a different opinion.
Steve AA6IO
 
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