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Why??

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donny612

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What I'd like to know is why even when the cb radio manufacturers release "New" radios it seems that they are mostly a remake of radios that were made 30+ years ago. Why can't one of these manufacturers really re-do a radio with a remote head and smaller footprint instead of rehashing the same old dinosaurs that have been around since the 70's and 80's. Have y'all ever opened up the case on one of the cobra radios? For all the real estate inside the radio there is surprisingly very little there in the way of components. By comparison almost all ham 2 meter radios are tiny by comparison and most have remote head/radio mounting capability and generally their pricing is acceptable as well. You can't tell me that cb's can't be made the same way??
The good cb radios are now just simply too large to do a satisfactory job of mounting in today's cars without looking stupid and out of place. Why is it that Kenwood, Yaesu, Icom and others can manufacture their 2 meter radios small and with remote head setups??? Something for Cobra etc. to think about. This is why I'm selling off my cb equipment and getting out of cb all together. If someone would make a similar cb radio like the Yaesu's 2 meter/440 radios I'd buy one in a heartbeat.
(Apologize for the rant)
 

kb2vxa

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"What I'd like to know is why even when the cb radio manufacturers release "New" radios it seems that they are mostly a remake of radios that were made 30+ years ago."

Rule number one; if it ain't broke don't try to fix it.

"You can't tell me that cb's can't be made the same way?"

Why should they be? A 5W unit with 40 channels and two modes is a small fraction of a ham rig so it only needs a small fraction of what's in the box and its features.

"The good cb radios are now just simply too large to do a satisfactory job of mounting in today's cars without looking stupid and out of place."

I guess you never saw the first (and probably only) CB using FET technology made by Courier. It was the size of a pack of cigarettes, the mic was bigger than the radio! They make the "good" CBs big so fat fingers can find their way around the knobs, switches and various doodads without messing everything up and creating a road rage incident.

Speaking of looking stupid and out of place, there's only one mounting place for the nut that holds the steering wheel, the CB can be mounted anywhere.
 

SmitHans

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Arizona, USA/Sonora, MEX
What I'd like to know is why even when the cb radio manufacturers release "New" radios it seems that they are mostly a remake of radios that were made 30+ years ago. Why can't one of these manufacturers really re-do a radio with a remote head and smaller footprint instead of rehashing the same old dinosaurs that have been around since the 70's and 80's. Have y'all ever opened up the case on one of the cobra radios? For all the real estate inside the radio there is surprisingly very little there in the way of components. By comparison almost all ham 2 meter radios are tiny by comparison and most have remote head/radio mounting capability and generally their pricing is acceptable as well. You can't tell me that cb's can't be made the same way??
The good cb radios are now just simply too large to do a satisfactory job of mounting in today's cars without looking stupid and out of place. Why is it that Kenwood, Yaesu, Icom and others can manufacture their 2 meter radios small and with remote head setups??? Something for Cobra etc. to think about. This is why I'm selling off my cb equipment and getting out of cb all together. If someone would make a similar cb radio like the Yaesu's 2 meter/440 radios I'd buy one in a heartbeat.
(Apologize for the rant)
CB radios are marketed almost exclusively to/for truckers. Space to mount a CB is not so much of a concern in the cab of a semi, and they have to be large enough for a driver to operate them with pudgy fingers while bouncing around in the cab.
 

talkpair

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Someone correct me if I'm wrong......but it seems like back in the 70's and early 80's there was a AM/FM/CB combined radio made that replaced the factory in-dash AM/FM radio.

Of course this was when car radios pretty much all had the same dimensions regardless of manufacturer or model.

It also seems that someone manufactured a trunk-mount rig as well........the radio mounted in the trunk.
Only the microphone with the controls built into it was located in the cab.

Do an eBay search on "remote mount CB" and you'll see several results for a Cobra radio.

These ideas came out of the 70's when the CB craze was at its peak.......before cell phones, pagers and internet. There were probably more passenger cars with CB's during that era than trucks, so the manufacturers of CB's were regularly bringing out new products.

Today, you rarely see a CB antenna on a passenger car, so manufacturers have probably abandoned any new design plans for that market.
 

thomast77

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My experience is that CB sales pickup with the solar cycles and any new stuff seems to come out with the solar maximum. There is more skip so it becomes more interesting. I think that is why we are seeing the first new CB radios in about 10 years. But at the same time CB use has decreased because everyone has a Cell Phone (Texting) and alot of the CBers have moved on to Amateur Radio because it is more exciting and there is more to do. Most CB sales are to truckers who like Chrome and lots of Knobs and switches. That is why the Chrome dinosaurs are still most popular.
 

LtDoc

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I think the bottom line is that manufacturers are not going to spend any money making an 'up-dated' radio until they are forced to. So, the cosmetics will change, but the 'insides' won't. It's too expensive and would cut down the profit made. All kinds of variations mixed in that, pick the one you feel 'fits' best.
- 'Doc
 

N1GJB

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Pembroke, NH
Someone correct me if I'm wrong......but it seems like back in the 70's and early 80's there was a AM/FM/CB combined radio made that replaced the factory in-dash AM/FM radio.

Of course this was when car radios pretty much all had the same dimensions regardless of manufacturer or model.

It also seems that someone manufactured a trunk-mount rig as well........the radio mounted in the trunk.
Only the microphone with the controls built into it was located in the cab.

Do an eBay search on "remote mount CB" and you'll see several results for a Cobra radio.

These ideas came out of the 70's when the CB craze was at its peak.......before cell phones, pagers and internet. There were probably more passenger cars with CB's during that era than trucks, so the manufacturers of CB's were regularly bringing out new products.

Today, you rarely see a CB antenna on a passenger car, so manufacturers have probably abandoned any new design plans for that market.
Did a web search and found one on Youtube. Apparently the guy sold it on ebay in 2010. Seems American Motors had AM/FM/CB as an option at some point: American Motors AMC AMX Jeep AM FM CB Car Truck Radio - YouTube
 

mrweather

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General Motors had a similar option back in the day too. I know my dad's 1981 Olds Cutlass Supreme could come with a factory AM/FM/CB radio and centre-loaded antenna.
 
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I was just about to point that out. My father has an old '76 Monte Carlo that had a CB/AM/FM radio as an option at one point. His doesn't have one, but it was an option when new.

I personally think it would be cool if a CB featured WX bands and FM reception. Kind of like the Chinese HT's that can do 2m/440 and pick up broadcast FM. Also, there's a site somewhere online that shows where a guy converted a Cobra 29 into a remote face unit. It was a long process but it could be done. I think that would be pretty cool for a manufacturer to do maybe as an addition to an existing model line, like the Cobra 29 models available (LTD Classic, NW WX, LX LE, etc). That might make it more appealing to people with newer cars to mount a radio since a lot of people decide not to install a CB since the can't find a place for one. I think a remote face 29 LX would be pretty darn cool.

Who knows? The technology is getting cheaper and the CB manufacturers are clearly experimenting since we're seeing radios being made with LCD screens. Maybe they'll add other things next.
 

kb2vxa

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"So, the cosmetics will change, but the 'insides' won't. It's too expensive and would cut down the profit made."

Right, no sense wasting money on R&D, getting a new design type accepted and retooling production lines when if it ain't broke don't try to fix it. A few front panel changes that do nothing are covered by marketing, a little BS spread thinly goes a long way fooling them into thinking they have the latest and greatest. Hey, if they think they can get 40KW out of a mobile they'll believe anything.

The closest I came to one of those AM/FM/CB radios was a 100mW 1ch Starlite "transistor radio" talkie squawkie combos that after gathering most of the dust in the shack I found a use for. With a minor wiring change it made a fox the hunters never found, could still be there broadcasting Soul music on the local KKK channel.

Remember those "emergency radios" you'd keep in the trunk and if needed you'd plug into the cigar lighter socket and plunk its mag mount antenna on the roof to call REACT on channel 9?

Bob, I see you don't believe in KISS. What you want would confuse Einstein! I think I know what he thinks of that... (;->)
 
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roadranger

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Jun 13, 2006
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303
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Athens, Ga
Cobra 19 (IV)

I think you can still get one of these. Good little radio could fit in you dash. replace the factory mike. It's about a third of the size of a Cobra 29, doubtful that it's the same board.
 

donny612

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Location
New Bern, NC
New radios

Until truckers start asking for these things, en masse, you probably won't see them on CBs.

Uniden seems to be making some significant changes though...
Bearcat CB Radio with 7 Color Display Backlighting - CB Radios at Uniden

Cobra too...
https://www.cobra.com/detail/29-lx-lcd-cb-radio.cfm
Yeah I've seen the new radios from Uniden etc. and it's a definite step up but why couldn't they at least offer the remote head option? I don't care how big and clunky the actual radio is when I'm mounting it behind a seat or under something else but it's the controls that I want to mount close by to my driving position. Even at full size the front control panel could be put most anywhere as long as the actual radio is someplace else. Just sayin'...
 

birddog56

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cell phones are nice but i am moving back to michigan from Idaho, and when i came to Idaho i was a whole day without cell coverage i know that won't happen with a CB I may only be able to reach a trucker but most of them will relay a call for help for someoe
 

g6urm

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Jun 23, 2012
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plymouth (uk )
smit hans opined : " CB radios are marketed almost exclusively to/for truckers." - well they may be where you are but here a wide variety of people buy them and use them in cars - on bikes - at home ( not seen a "home base" for a while though - pity ) etc - in fact i would opine there are MORE used at home than anywhere else

as to the radios themselves - er not moved on ?? - hello any of you opened up one of late ?? - surface mount - lcd screens - programmable options - remote heads ( yes they do exist ) - compare that to the early 80 's specimin - things have advanced a LOT

again there seems to be a blurring of ham /cb here - if you want matchbox size radios with all the bells and whistes that some ham gear has - then expect to pay for it - cb is for non technical people round the world ( in the main ) all they want /require is a simple "box " to communicate with - and on the whole most people want low cost - are not interested in having too many bells and whistles - and probably have way too much elctronic crap in their cars anyways - to want a cb in there as well

the world as changed people - we have moved on from the 80's - amateur radio and citizens band ar a minority pass time compared to the internet and the use of associated communications devices

and the companies will only MAKE what will sell and make them a profit - in this case KISS radios for the most part - and a few expensive ones for the " i must have the best of everything so i can bore the *** off everyone boasting about it " types

so long as it does the job - what the heck ???
 

ZigZag747

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Georgia
I think the bottom line is that manufacturers are not going to spend any money making an 'up-dated' radio until they are forced to. So, the cosmetics will change, but the 'insides' won't. It's too expensive and would cut down the profit made. All kinds of variations mixed in that, pick the one you feel 'fits' best.
- 'Doc
Exactly...That's why Ham radios run $200-300 per radio and CB's run just over $100. Surface mount technology cost more than standard 1970-80's components...I would probably not pay "Ham Prices" for a plain jane barely legal CB radio just cause it was smaller...Now if the FCC lifted it's hold on Citizen Bands then I think the market would open wide up and prices would be justified by increased power out. Until then CB's will be CB's, which are large. BTW it allows all those mods to fit!!!lol
 

mmckenna

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I doubt there will be much change in the products until something with the actual service changes. FCC has forgotten about CB and so has most of the manufacturers. What is needed is a shake up of the CB rules to make it more useful. If the manufacturers start pushing for it, then the FCC will pay attention.
Allowing FM for better audio and allow CTCSS tones to be reliably used would help a lot. A number of countries around the world allow FM. Not sure I see a reason to not allow it here.
 
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