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What Are Some Of The Better Amateur Radio Hotspots Currently Available?

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#22
I am also wondering if there are any amateur radio hot-spots that have a built in battery and cellular connectivity? I assume not, since I haven't seen any like that yet, but perhaps I am looking in the wrong places.
 
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#23
I am also wondering if there are any amateur radio hot-spots that have a built in battery and cellular connectivity? I assume not, since I haven't seen any like that yet, but perhaps I am looking in the wrong places.
I can say with certainty the padded case I had left over from my Microsoft Zune was repurposed to hold my open spot power pack and connection cables before i built into the headrest , ìf you find somebody selling a Zune case on fleabay or something grab it ,thet are handy have different padded compartments inside with a hard outside shell ,mine is still serving it carries my National Geographic magazine hard drive every page map and drawing going back to first issue over a 100 years ago .if you get a pretty modest 18650 power pack and short cable ,you can run one for most of the day.

Sent from my SM-T810 using Tapatalk
 

KE5MC

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#25
...hot-spots that have a built in battery and cellular connectivity?
As others have commented external power packs with USB connector work well. I doubt you are looking in the wrong place for a hotspot with cellular connectivity. Smartphones so common place with their own hotspot functionality I would not expect the developers of the hotspots we are talking about want to raise the cost to add hardware and software development to the current products. They have made it easy to setup different WiFi SSID/passwords for connectivity at home and on the road. I have done a little road testing which was configured to operate the hotspot via the iPhone and use the iPhone to have a conversation at the same time. That worked well and they did not interfere with each other.
Mike

P.S. now that I said something about no cellular connectivity, likely someone with change that... :)
 
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#26
At the moment, I am focusing on two different devices. They are as follows:

Zum Radio SUMspot RPi Nextion 2.4
ZUM Radio ZUMspot RPi Nextion 2.4 Kit Plug-In Modules Boards DSTAR, ZUMspot RPi Nextion 2.4 Kit

and this one:

Pi-Star WINTERS-CN/Hotspot/MMDVM (JumboSpot) No Wires
Pi-Star - WINTERS-CN / Hotspot / MMDVM - ( jumbo spot ) No Wires! | eBay

To be honest, they BOTH look and sound pretty good to me. There is a price difference, obviosuly. The Zumspot from HRO is $219.95
The Pi-Star WINTERS-CN/Hotspot/MMDVM (JumboSpot) is $135.

Considering that I had problems with the Shark RF OpenSpot2, I am a bit nervous about this purchase.

For those familiar with the devices I have narrowed it down to, which would you select and why? Is the one from Zum Radio from HRO a much better device?
 
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Burlington County, NJ
#27
I am also wondering if there are any amateur radio hot-spots that have a built in battery and cellular connectivity? I assume not, since I haven't seen any like that yet, but perhaps I am looking in the wrong places.
No. The end user's hotspot connects via WiFi to either something like a Verizon Ellipsis Jetpack MHS900L | Verizon Wireless or one's smartphone. The jetpack (or whatever your carrier calls it) generally is a better choice than tethering the hotspot to a phone The battery options are described above. I have an always-on cigarette lighter jack in the back of the SUV, so I don't bother with a battery.
 

WX4JCW

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#28
I use a Commander Spot, most have complained they are overpriced but the thing is rock solid and works well, the case is solid acrylic, he has a rugged spot with an Oled screen as well, I have had nothing but good results from it
 

w1haf

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#29
You say you had problems with your Openspot 2. Maybe I missed exactly what the issue was?

Based on what your looking for I would have recommended the Openspot 2. It has a built in battery. You just need to connect to WiFi on a hotspot or phone.

No hotspot that I know has any built in cellular service. They all require a separate service.

What exactly did your Openspot 2 not do?
 
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#30
You say you had problems with your Openspot 2. Maybe I missed exactly what the issue was?

Based on what your looking for I would have recommended the Openspot 2. It has a built in battery. You just need to connect to WiFi on a hotspot or phone.

No hotspot that I know has any built in cellular service. They all require a separate service.

What exactly did your Openspot 2 not do?
...I tried the Shark RF OpenSpot 2 and I must have received a defective one because it will not stay connected...
The OpenSpot2 that I had did not have a built in battery.
 

w1haf

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#32
Okay, I miss spoke about the battery. It needs a usb-c connection. It still should be the better choice for what your looking for.

I don’t understand why it will not stay connected. Were you referring to the WiFi? If so then that was probably just a settings issue or bad WiFi service.
That happens with all hotspots.

Did you return the Openspot 2 and have them check it out?
 
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#33
Okay, I miss spoke about the battery. It needs a usb-c connection. It still should be the better choice for what your looking for.

I don’t understand why it will not stay connected. Were you referring to the WiFi? If so then that was probably just a settings issue or bad WiFi service.
That happens with all hotspots.

Did you return the Openspot 2 and have them check it out?
I did return it last week. I assume that they will check it out.
 
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#34
Perhaps the Rugged Spot would be a good choice for me.

Rugged SPOT - NEX-GEN Custom Hot Spots
IMHO you are overthinking the purchase of a hotspot. As KE0FHS wrote in his material that you liked, Pi-Star is straightforward. You should come up to speed on basics of upgrading/updating (Configuration menu) and use a good quality Class 10 SD card. Other than that, just decide whether you want a OLED screen or not. A lot of good information has been handed to you earlier in the thread. Relax. Pick something and buy it. Geez, not difficult. Go to it.
 

KE5MC

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#35
Perhaps the Rugged Spot would be a good choice for me.

Rugged SPOT - NEX-GEN Custom Hot Spots
At this point all I have to work with is spec. sheets of the Rugged Spot and the Zum Radio ZUMspot RPi Nextion 2.4 in an earlier post.

Both use the Pi 3B and all the connectivity reported by the Rugged SPOT the Zumspot does not talk about.

Zumspot has the better more informative display, but the Rugged SPOT says it Nextion ready, whatever that means. :)

Zumspot Pi UHF is the original white silkscreen PCB. Rugged SPOT looks like the knock-off version of the radio modem.

Zumspot has power supply

Rugged SPOT 7 step QC process and ready to plug and play. You really need to be hands on with any hotspot, especially if you want to make changes or keep the images up to date, which you will.

ZumSpot less expensive

Look closely at "...will cross mode..." It will be done by the node you are connecting too. You must have a DMR radio to do DMR, etc, etc.

Rugged SPOT has a lot of salesmanship verbiage. I'm not saying they will not deliver. I just don't want to pay extra for salesmanship.

All of above is my opinion based on having a lesser ZumSpot and the required radios.

Agree with Tom who just posted as I was finishing this post.

Good Luck,
Mike
 

kb2ztx

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#36
I have an OpenSpot that has been connected for almost 6 months straight with no drops at all. Although it doesn't support P25 its a rock solid unit. Ordering the OS2 this month for P25.
 

Hit_Factor

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#37
Nextion is a small touch screen. Various sizes from 2.4 to 7 inches are available. There is a lot of programming to get these working with a hotspot, when added after the sale.

If the screen interest you, buy it with the hotspot if you have low tolerance with computers.

I have them on several of my hotspots. The display is helpful in the shack. No use for it in the truck.

73, K8HIT
Icom: IC-7300, IC-PW1, ID-5100A, ID-51A Plus 2, IC-R30, Hytera PD782G, Kenwood TH-D74, Uniden SDS100, DVMega, SDRplay RSPduo
 

dmaria

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#38
I have a dual band DVMega, a Jumbo-Spot (China), two boards made by hams in Germany and a Nano-Spot. All of them function perfectly using Pi-Star. The "Rugged Spot" is the same thing as the Jumbo-Spot, but he sets it up for you. You pay a hefty price for it with no real added value.
 
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