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MotoTRBO questions

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chip448

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Hello everyone,
My employer has me on a fact-finding mission regarding these radios. We need to replace our legacy VHF portables and mobiles because of the narrowbanding mandate, and these are a candidate because of their price and digital capability. What do you think of them from a public safety perspective? Does anyone have any experience using them?

Thanks!
 

AZScanner

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Somewhere in this room. Right now, you're very col
Hello everyone,
My employer has me on a fact-finding mission regarding these radios. We need to replace our legacy VHF portables and mobiles because of the narrowbanding mandate, and these are a candidate because of their price and digital capability. What do you think of them from a public safety perspective? Does anyone have any experience using them?

Thanks!
Is your employer a public safety agency? If so, why go TRBO which is proprietary and locks you into one vendor when APCO25 allows you the use of multiple vendors and gives you interoperability out of the box? Just because TRBO radios are cheap now doesn't mean they will continue to be cost effective in the long run.
 

chip448

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AZScanner,
Yes, I work for an EMS agency. If these are not P25 compliant, you're right...it's not worth it. I'll have to look at some other vendors for dual-mode solutions, as the Moto XTS series is nice, but out of our price range.
 

kcscan6

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AZScanner,
Yes, I work for an EMS agency. If these are not P25 compliant, you're right...it's not worth it. I'll have to look at some other vendors for dual-mode solutions, as the Moto XTS series is nice, but out of our price range.
If you guys want P25 Interop-Harris, Kenwood, and EF Johnson have some really good solutions that may fit nicely into your agency's budget. I realize this is the Moto forum, but those other vendors might be worth checking into. Just my $0.02.
 

safetyobc

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A local county Sheriff's office is using these radios here in Arkansas. They suck to say the least. For 1, they are not interoperable when they are on these radios. And for a county wide system, they don't work that well. The deputies usually run on "analog" (older VHF-High system) so they can actually use the radios.
 

chip448

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We have been replacing our old spectras and non-narrowband HT1000's with HT/CDM1250's for about two years now. We recently got a flyer that has these TRBO radios on sale, and thought it would be nice to switch models and start getting ahead of the curve, digitally speaking. It's not worth the money to switch to the TRBO's if P25 interop is not possible - especially considering the HT's and CDM's have and will work just fine for us.

The repeaters we use are another story...but that's the county's issue, not ours.
 

SCPD

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MotoTrbo

We have been replacing our old spectras and non-narrowband HT1000's with HT/CDM1250's for about two years now. We recently got a flyer that has these TRBO radios on sale, and thought it would be nice to switch models and start getting ahead of the curve, digitally speaking. It's not worth the money to switch to the TRBO's if P25 interop is not possible - especially considering the HT's and CDM's have and will work just fine for us.

The repeaters we use are another story...but that's the county's issue, not ours.
Me and you are the in same boat. A Moto vendor is trying to sell our plant MotoTrbo. I'm personally not interested, if it's not broke, don't fix it. Comms in my area of the plant are just fine, and we are narrowband already. But I'm only one of a dozen folks who buy radios. And other areas are drooling over all the dazzle and baffle that the vendor is saying about these new radios being the best thing since Marconi strung a wire. But I keep reading on RR that the audio is bad. Another area of the plant has bought about a dozen or so handhelds, with one channel programmed to simplex digital.
Guess I need to go and hear it myself.
 

N0YFE

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Minneapolis, MN
In my own experience from P25 to MotoTrbo, I would also recommend if your going to change, go with a P25 COA setup.

The best time saver is doing it right the 1st time. If not, you'll be spending 4x as long to do it right!
 

matt131

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Mar 22, 2009
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I realize this is a motorola forum but I myself am currently between Mototrbo and Icom IDAS. Does anyone have any experience with either systems? I myself use Icom but wanted to give moto a try. Any suggestions?
 

kg9nn

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Jan 1, 2005
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Auburn, IN
MotoTrbo for public safety

I've been using Trbo for a couple different businesses and would have to say the audio is no worse than P25. Digital could sound as good as or better than analog if there were enough bandwidth which is not the case in LMR. MotoTrbo for public safety is a tough call. I know of agencies who want interop but never use it because they actually want nothing to do with each other. Also keep in mind that if go Trbo you still have analog which is interoperable. Also Trbo gives you two talk paths with the infrastructure. Now on the downside, P25 has become a standard of sorts for digital public safety and the multiple vendor solution may be needed for bidding. Also the encryption on Trbo (40 bit ARC4) is not as cryptographically strong as AES. From a HIPAA standpoint, if you transmit any personally identifiable health information over the air, AES or DES would be better. You can also get 100 watt VHF mobiles for P25 which could be very useful in rural areas. Your state accrediting body may also have standards. For example in Indiana the state EMS Commission requires a VHF radio capable of using IHERN, recommends a UHF radio capable of the Med channels and may require an 800 radio on the Hoosier SAFE-T system.

So it's a toss up. If you're a private ambulance / paratransport provider then consider Trbo. If you are a first response agency then MotoTrbo might not be best.
 

radioman2001

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Unless you plan on keeping your replacement radios past 2020, don't bother with digital at all. Technology will improve and prices will go down in the next 10 years, when we are forced AGAIN to go 6.25kc and digital. The HT-1250 is an excellent radio as is the EX series. I have heard that there is an analogue only version of the XPS and XPR radios, without MOTOTRBO. Havn't seen it yet, but I suspect that Motorola will phase out the HT-1250 and the CDM-1250 lines soon, they are almost 10 years old. Not to be a Moto only geek, we recently had the opportunity to try out the ICOM digital. Nice radio, almost looks like a HT-1550, lots of options with a lot less cost than Motorola. The only reason I see for using the ICOM is because our frequency co-ordinator says to, if you want any new frequencies from them. I don't agree, I would rather have the FCC weigh in on being forced 6.25 10 years early, but the powers above see it as a means to an end.
 

Mr_Observer

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I have noticed a difference in single repeater digital turbo and site connect turbo audio, the site connect audio sounds flatter, it's harder to recognize a voice. The early turbo radios had a similar problem with loud background noise causing tx audio to be hard to make out, it doesn't seem bad now.
We used turbo radios at the Long Beach grand prix the last 2 years with noise canceling headsets and everyone loved the turbos compared to GR-1225s and PR-400s.
 

zz0468

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Feb 6, 2007
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Is TRBO legal to use on amateur radio for UHF repeater operation 440-450 MHz?
It's not specifically prohibited, and there are some provisions in the rules that could be interpreted to say that just about any digital mode is legal, so long as there is no intent to hide.

I'd suggest that if you want to try it, pore through the rules yourself and find some provision that you think would make it ok, then approach your local frequency coordinating body to discuss.
 
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