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Using a Motorola VHF HT1250 for Ham Radio

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PCTEK

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Hello. I have the oppotinity to purchase a Motorola VHF HT1250 and I want to use it for 2-meter HAM Radio. Has anyone used this radio for this purpose? Is there any modification(s) that need to be done to allow this operation? Thank you.
 

mmckenna

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Hello. I have the oppotinity to purchase a Motorola VHF HT1250 and I want to use it for 2-meter HAM Radio. Has anyone used this radio for this purpose? Is there any modification(s) that need to be done to allow this operation? Thank you.
They'll do it out of the box. I'm using several CDM's (mobile cousin of this radio, same software) on amateur frequencies.

Nothing needs to be done to them, just program away.

Only challenge I'd see is making sure the radio hadn't been programmed with latest CPS that requires narrow band. You'd need to get that version of CPS and an entitlement key from Motorola. But not a big deal.
 

a417

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using the Pro series radios for HAM is mostly not worth the trouble, due to the necessity of CPS for programming ANY changes (unless you get a front programmable 1550 w/ red battery) to the radio. It's a PITA to have to whip out a computer just to modify a channel.
 

jaspence

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I use the 440 version. The only stumbling block is they are a little clumsy to program and you are best using a Windows XP computer with a real serial port. There are two versions so be sure you get one with the low band split of 403-470 mhz. I did not need more than 16 channels, so I did not try to set up zones to use the 128 channel capacity.
 

mmckenna

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using the Pro series radios for HAM is mostly not worth the trouble, due to the necessity of CPS for programming ANY changes (unless you get a front programmable 1550 w/ red battery) to the radio. It's a PITA to have to whip out a computer just to modify a channel.
True,
However they have lots of channel capacity, so adding all the standard split simplex channels still leaves you with a ton of room for the local repeaters. Not a good choice if you are traveling across the country, but great for a radio to use around your home.

I have CDM-1250's and CDM-1550's in our vehicles. All the standard split simplex 2 meter channels and all the repeaters I'll ever need are programmed into them, with lots of room to add more.
 

PCTEK

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I have the CDM-1550LS+ mobiles I use for GMRS. I have version 06.12.02 of the CPS. I don't I as an individual can get the Motorola Entitlement key.

I also have a Motorola MT2000 VHF. Will I need the Entitlement Key since that radio was only designed for Wideband?
 
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MTS2000des

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No, the MT2000 uses "ancient" DOS RSS (last released version was 6.08 circa 2002) and has no forced narrowband.
There is nothing wrong with the 1250s if you have an earlier version of CPS AND the radio(s) acquired haven't been written with a newer version. Since you already have CDMs, your learning curve isn't an issue CPS wise, whereas DOS RSS is a P I T A, requires a true MS-DOS environment, a real hardware serial port, and all the fun that goes with dealing with two and a half decade old radios programming (and tuning wise, ASSuming a radio needs alignment, which my experience says a 15-20 year old radio would not hurt if one cares about performance).
 

Ant9270

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I have R06.12.05 PRO CPS, and it takes 25.0Khz frequencies without any issue. I don’t believe MSI sells PRO CPS anymore, only thing I could find is the “FD” series federal software. However, I may be wrong.
 

K2NEC

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I personally only have UHF Waris radios but I have programmed VHF Waris radios in the past for some people. They are awesome, dependable radios. While they may limit what you can do with them outside of your house, they are great for local use.

As per programming, I do remember seeing a hex edit somewhere that will allow wideband even with the latest CPS. I personally use USB cables(and never had any problems with them), but like any other programming, serial is almost always more dependable.
 

a417

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As per programming, I do remember seeing a hex edit somewhere that will allow wideband even with the latest CPS. I personally use USB cables(and never had any problems with them), but like any other programming, serial is almost always more dependable.
Yeah, they came out at a transitional time for radio/computer interfacing. IIRC (and this is only what I know) they were the first radio line that was released by Moto that was completely Windows software (CPS) dependent, and they were initially COM port dependent as the USB programming cable wasn't release until several years after the product line was out. (If the info about the USB programming cable is wrong, and someone can chime in ... please do) Then the issue became that while all of us had our RIBs & cables that we still live and die by, manufacturer hardware support changed their minds on the antiquated RS232 stuff and the started going away. So all in all the software walked a very difficult line in computer times, and we all had to decide which way we wanted to go.
 

William2910

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I keep a 1250 around since it is a decent small unit. I mean back in the day I had bought extra stuff, housings, and so on being a in the event of type person so it's been around and made useful on non digital applications to this day. I have nothing negative to say about it.
 

mmckenna

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I keep a 1250 around since it is a decent small unit. I mean back in the day I had bought extra stuff, housings, and so on being a in the event of type person so it's been around and made useful on non digital applications to this day. I have nothing negative to say about it.
Yeah, they are popular radios, so a lot of parts and accessories still out there.
 

mm

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I use pro radio cps r06.12.05 with windows 8.1 and win7 to program my ht1250 220 MHZ ht radio, a ht1250 2 meter ht, ht1250 uhf low ht, my cdm1550 uhf mobile , cdm750 6 meter and cdm750 10 meter mobile radios and I never needed an entitlement key.

My radios program fine as either wide or narrow with R06.12.05 CPS, never a wide/narrow issue.

Excellent radios every one of them, I never had an issue programming and one of my win8.1 machines is a mini dell venue8 tablet and it programs every one of my pro radios just like my laptops program, never a problem in the past 5 years.

Also I use both 32 and 64 bit machines and also I never had a programming issue between the different win8.1 and win7 pc's
 
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N4KVE

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using the Pro series radios for HAM is mostly not worth the trouble, due to the necessity of CPS for programming ANY changes (unless you get a front programmable 1550 w/ red battery) to the radio. It's a PITA to have to whip out a computer just to modify a channel.
Not necessary to have the red battery. There’s a ”fix” to allow any battery on a 1550, & still allow FPP on the radio. I have a bunch of MTX9250’s I use on 902/927 ham freq’s. A similar radio that uses different CPS, but works great. These 1250’s are a favorite of small FD’s where the volunteers have to buy their own radios.
 

SurgePGH

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The FIRST thing to check is the band split. Ensure that the one you are buying falls within the ham band.
The next thing is having it programmed. Ensure that you have access to someone that can program it for you.
There are limitations as some of the guys have pointed out.
Good luck and enjoy.
 

a417

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Not necessary to have the red battery. There’s a ”fix” to allow any battery on a 1550, & still allow FPP on the radio.
After i ditched mine a decade ago, I never looked back. Good to know, thanks!
 

mmckenna

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The FIRST thing to check is the band split. Ensure that the one you are buying falls within the ham band.
The next thing is having it programmed. Ensure that you have access to someone that can program it for you.
There are limitations as some of the guys have pointed out.
Good luck and enjoy.
OP is talking about 2 meter band. There's only one VHF high split.

However, if you are buying used, make sure that the seller isn't guessing. You can check model numbers here, as well as get a lot of good info on these radios: HT750/1250/1550/PRO5150/7150/9150/GP320/340/360/380/ GP318/338/GP640/680/1280/CDM750/CDM1250/CDM1550,etc.
 

K2NEC

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OP is talking about 2 meter band. There's only one VHF high split.

However, if you are buying used, make sure that the seller isn't guessing. You can check model numbers here, as well as get a lot of good info on these radios: HT750/1250/1550/PRO5150/7150/9150/GP320/340/360/380/ GP318/338/GP640/680/1280/CDM750/CDM1250/CDM1550,etc.
Or sometimes sellers will copy other people's listings because the radios look similar. You can't ever trust it. I ALWAYS ask for the model number if it's not in a picture. That way I 100% know what I am getting.
 

Ant9270

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If you’re going to buy a 1250, SUNNY Communications in Colorado or “erac1” on eBay has them. At least you can trust them as they’re a certified dealer/reseller and have a warranty process.
 
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