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Author Topic: Wasted Money  (Read 1991 times)
W4LGC
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Posts: 15




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« on: May 08, 2012, 12:13:48 PM »

Below, is text I lifted from a new ad in the "Classifieds" section of this site today (05082012). It should be an eye-opener for those considering buying one of those Chinese knock-offs. It's better to buy a quality product the first time around, rather than wasting your money on a lesson that's already been learned, many times before. To be fair to the seller, it's clear from the ad that he pretty much knew ahead of time what he was purchasing and wanted something cheap (throw-away). But, for the new guys, the seller's opinion of the radios should serve as very useful information.

"As the title says, I have TWO Baofeng UV-3R HTs in RED. Bought one for my XYL and myself. We looked them over, charged one of them up and played with it. Decided to stick with our Yaesu VX-3Rs. We got these thinking they would be a good "throw away" radio to take on mission and if they got lost or destroyed, no biggie. They are similar to the VX-3R which I am sure they were derived from. Just not as well done. Then again, for the price, how could they be?! Anyway, would prefer to sell the pair. A "two-fer"... get both for the price of one. $60 shipped."
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K0BG
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Posts: 9880


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« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2012, 05:02:08 PM »

Well..... maybe!

It depends on what you're looking for. Amateur radio operators, are notoriously cheap! If you're not one of those, and you really bought the handhelds as throwaways, then you have nothing to complain about. It is, however, the folks who thought they were getting a good deal that were indeed naive. They didn't, because indeed the Baofeng radios are throwaways! Fact is, once the battery fails, you're better off tossing the radio, and buying a new one, as it is cheaper overall.

All this said, some of the material from China is of fine quality, and a lot of the time, backed up with a decent warranty. I'll give you an example.

I purchased an FLIR, 72K pixel, SD storage camera, directly from a Chinese company in late March, 2012. It cost just shy of $1,000 USD, less the shipping ($59 USD, FedEx no less!). It arrived in less than 10 days. It is so similar to the one Fluke sells for almost $7,000 USD, you'd think it is made in the same factory. I've since learned, it is! Imagine that?! The battery failed in less than 60 days. I sent an e-mail to them on a Monday, and I didn't hear from them until the next Friday. That's when FedEx showed up at my door with a new battery! I have no complaints. I knew what I was buying, and I was willing to take a few hits. The fact I didn't, speaks volumes!
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KCJ9091
Member

Posts: 0




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« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2012, 06:40:41 PM »

I bought one because they are Part 90 approved so I could use it for a back-up radio on the weekends I work sports car races.  Our first race of the year was the second weekend in March.  It rained all weekend long, coming down by the buckets full at times.  I was much less concerned standing out in the monsoon with a $40 radio than the $400 dollar used Motorola I normally use.
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W1BVV
Member

Posts: 35




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« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2012, 05:36:31 AM »

I bought one when they first came out.  What I got was an inexpensive, fully functional 2W vhf/uhf HT.  Somewhat cheaply made, but very workable and definitely handy.  I used it as a backup on two major Public Service events hitting all the 2M and  UHF repeaters while my Yaesu was charging.  Then I found out from the ARRL that it has extremely excessive 2nd harmonic radiation on 2M (way outside FCC limits, based on a sample of two).  I verified that mine had the problem also.  UHF is ok though.  Sooo, as usual, you get what you pay for.

Dave, W1BVV
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N6AJR
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Posts: 9912




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« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2012, 12:10:47 PM »

First off, I have radios in the shack, the car and the pickup, so I am not a big user of HT's.  I also have dedicated 2m and 440 motorolas, a yaesu 2m/440 , a vx8r with 2m/440/220/ and I forget what else,  an alinco 220, and the alinco  with 2m 440 and 1.2 g and the mate for 220/900 mhz.I forget what else.  I probably carry a HT once or twice a year. I try to charge them all up and their spares about once a month.


with all that said, I have actually used the UV-3R ( in black) with one of the small "bullet" antenna about an inch tall ( comet SRH805S) , for places like Pacificon and Visalia.  they fit in the shirt pocket, don't poke me with the antenna and work well in a close in  area, like around a convention.   so small and convenient and so on is handy.  If you have a use for them , they are fine.  For 50 bucks delivered, they are worth the price. I got the spare battery for $12  and  the computer programming stuff for $12 also. 

So if you need a small low power HT it may be ok for what you need.  also if you have a local ham that is a youngster just passing their test you can give them their first radio for cheap.  They do have their place.
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