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Author Topic: VHF/UHF Radio with FTO Option?  (Read 17384 times)

Posts: 1

« on: April 28, 2012, 03:53:16 PM »

To start off, I would first like to say thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read, review, and respond to my question. Any and all advice provided by each of you is greatly appreciated! Second, I apologize if I have posted this under the wrong section of the forum. Please move the topic to the correct section as you see fit. I sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Now on with my question: To make a long story short, I work and volunteer as a Registered Nurse, Paramedic, and Fire Fighter with a local hospital and two volunteer fire departments. For the past several years I have been carrying around a single UHF, single VFH, and a minitor to alert me when any suppression or medical call is dispatched. Simply, when the minitor went off I would turn on the appropriate UHF or VHF radio and respond to the call. However, I have found myself in the market yet again.  I am looking for a radio which will operate on both VHF and UHF, but also has the Fire Tone Out option built it. If you are not familiar with the FTO option, basically a radio will “Alert” when a specific frequency of tones is dropped. This FTO option is a must!

So anyone who can offer up advice or possible options for a radio, please feel free to provide your input. Anything and everything is greatly appreciated!


Posts: 3207


« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2012, 06:30:28 PM »

To the best of my knowledge, the radio you are asking for does not exist.

Posts: 6252

« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2012, 05:32:50 AM »

I have to second that responce.  That radio doesn't exist--unless it was made as a custom package.  You may have to keep going with the two radios and the pager.  Sorry.

Posts: 2080

« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2012, 02:54:47 PM »

I'll add that, the alert tones you are calling FTO (verbiage foreign to me, but probably local to you) are typically standard two-tone paging tones that have been in use for decades and are still used by many in the fire service today.  There have been adaptations of those tones, but typically they are combinations of paging tones.  (There are some digital and five-tone formats around as well).

Many of the same tones (or codes) were used by commercial radio manufacturers like Motorola to "page" mobile or portable two-way radios in the same manner that they were used to page tone-only and tone-and-voice paging receivers (pagers).  In the two-way radio arena, Motorola called it "Quick Call" and "Quick Call II".  It was also known as "sel-call" or Select-Call, among other things.  Again, plain old paging codes.  Your Minitor receiver is, most likely, equipped with those same tones.  But, radios of this type have been in use for many, many years.

My point is that you might buy a retired commercial portable radio (UHF or VHF, depending on the band on which your fire services sends those codes) that is two-tone (Quick Call) capable in the programming.  It would serve both purposes; opening the receiver when paged and allowing a voice message to come through, then act as a two-way radio to respond to the call. 


Terry, WØFM


Posts: 5

« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2012, 06:12:47 PM »

Terry brings up a good point, lots of commercial gear made over the last couple of decades is likely Quick Call capable.  The problem will be finding a single radio that combines that with dual-band operation.  I thought I read that Motorola's latest gear in the APX series supported QC, but looking briefly on their website I couldn't verify it.  The APX series includes HT and mobiles with dual-band capability, but they are very pricey!

If you can get by with one band, Terry's suggestion is very good.  You can pick up even an old Saber HT for $100 or so and it will do QC and lots more.  Dual band commercial gear seems to be relatively rare (nobody cared much about interoperability until recently) and as such is expensive.


brian, k3hmx
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