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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | Tait TB8100 Base/Repeater Help

Reviews Summary for Tait TB8100 Base/Repeater
Tait TB8100 Base/Repeater Reviews: 2 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $6K to 10K (US)
Description: The TB8100 is a high performance base station/repeater designed to cope with the harshest of operational environments. Ideal for any application from a simple conventional repeater to advanced TaitNet Quasi Sync and MPT 1327 trunked systems. Featuring remote monitoring and configuration as well as a powerful local control application it is available in 5, 50 and 100W configurations in a range of popular frequency bands.
Product is in production.
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W6MTF Rating: 3/5 Jan 14, 2015 23:32 Send this review to a friend
TAIT is nothing new  Time owned: more than 12 months
Tait repeaters are no secret, just not well known in the US because Motorola tends to keep them at a distance somehow.
I doubt many hams will line up to place orders for a TB8100, but that said I would say Tait is of the highest quality and performance in a repeater.
A feature is their modular approach, it makes it easy to remove a module repair from the rack, fix it (as if it would ever need a repair!) or replace it and get back on the air in minimum time. I have no experience with the P8011 but Tait's T800 series modules are strong enough a 200+ LB man can use them as a stepping stool and not cause any damage thanks to the heavy cast housings they are built in. The internal shielding is incredible also, much better than the big M or GE, one exception might be the GE Mastr III which is also a modular approach BTW.

Tait's T800 series (series I and series II) in 216-220MHz are in use in the SF Bay Area and in Southern Cal, but I need remind those who were in the 2-way biz (I wasn't BTW) that Tait did something stupid about 15 years ago and fired their small dealers and forced them to buy from larger supplier or a middle man, this is what happens when a distributor goes in and gives the OEM a hard-sell and convinces them they are better off letting the small shops buy from a distributor than direct from the factory.
I doubt Tait is selling direct to hams so that $3500 repeater in 1990 will now be more pricey, esp with P25 in it, like $6000+ with today's exchange rate (the NZ dollar has weakened over the past year).

There is another manufacturer who modeled their repeaters after Tait, namely RF Technology in Australia, they are ham friendly too BTW and they make some 220 MHz repeaters, I've been seeing one on eBay for almost a year at over $4800.

I got tired of waiting for a T800 220 MHz repeater to come out of service in California, I see one every time I visit a specific location, the owner is using it as a spare they won't let it go so I finally built a 220 repeater using converted commercial gear for WBFM and it works fine.
Use it or lose it they say, or the FCC didn't listen to that adage when they took away the major portion of the 220 band for the big time loser ACSB. But that's another story for another time!
K2YYN Rating: 5/5 Jan 7, 2015 16:59 Send this review to a friend
A secret found!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
As most of you are aware 220 MHz repeater manufacturers both amateur and commercial have basically disappeared from the US market. Those mom and pop repeater builder shops have gone out of business or have switched to commercial (non 220 MHz) repeater applications. Current amateur radio manufactures barley cover the 220 MHz market save for a few mobile and hand held models though Chinese companies are beginning to fill the gap somewhat save for repeater unit itself.

Currently amateurs are limited into configuring two 220MHz mobiles with conversion (RICK) kits, repeater controller, duplexer etc. or converting older commercial radios by retuning to the 220MHz band.
A long time secret held from the amateur community is a growing communications company out of New Zealand named Tait Communications has stepped forward with a product that indeed just might fill in the product vacuum her in the US. You can read about Tait mobile radios elsewhere here at reviews.
A number of amateur radio organizations (clubs) mainly located in the North West US have installed the TB8100 Base Station/Repeater and have had much success with this piece of equipment.
In December of 2014 our municipal OEM replaced our 30 year old Spectrum 220MHz repeater with a TB8100 Repeater, complete with controller and new duplexer. The old Spectrum was only pushing 18 watts (Normal 35 Watts) due to a component failure). Also over the two years. OEM replaced the Hardline and 220 MHz antenna with (PCTEL Maxrad 220 MHZ base antenna -heavy duty construction--215-223 MHZ range--3dB gain)
So far signal reports have been very good with TB8100 Repeater with 95 watts of transmit out. We are also in the process of installing an AR-2 Preamp to pick up those weaker signals especially of portables.
So the secret is out! Tait Communications. Though it may be pricy but again it is another option to consider for 220 MHz repeaters. Please check their web site for all the options and frequency bands this TB8100 Repeater/Base covers. Yes it can also be ordered for 2 meters, 70 centimeters and 900 MHz, is also narrow band compliant (if ever needed for amateur radios service) as well as supporting voter receivers (they call it reciters) and it will handle various digital formats including C4FM, P25 emissions.
I would like to hear from the amateur community in this forum their experiences with the TB8100 Base/Repeater unit.
Thanks for reading! Happy New Year 2015!

Ken / K2YYN

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