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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held | TYT MD380 Help

Reviews Summary for TYT MD380
TYT MD380 Reviews: 35 Average rating: 4.3/5 MSRP: $175
Description: DMR/MotoTrbo Digital Handheld
Product is in production.
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4X1ST Rating: 5/5 Nov 23, 2018 14:06 Send this review to a friend
Excellent DMR handheld  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've owned the MD380 for almost 18 months.

It sees daily use, and needs charging maybe once a week. The set obviously performs better with the longer antenna supplied, but the short whip is fine if you're using a hotspot, or are within a few km of a repeater.

I use the TYTOOLZ firmware and find this offers all the options I need.

Like all DMR radios, programming is "interesting" until you get a handle on the concepts, but afterwards is pretty straightforward to edit. The supplied CPS software is ok, but I've recently changed to the G6AMU CPS which allows much more flexibility in terms of sorting entries, copying configs, editing and so on.

The only downside is the limited memory for the user database, even using the custom firmwares. But if you can live without seeing the name and QTH of everyone you talk to, then that's not a problem.

Finally these devices are becoming cheaper as newer dual band radios have come on the market. But there is a reason why the 380's are one of the most common rigs you'll hear on DMR - they're well built, reliable (with the exceptio n of the occasional "white screen" bug, which is quite fixable), good intermod performance, and great value for money.

I've considered moving to an Anytone 868, but don't have any VHF DMR repeater in range (nor a whole lot of local 2m FM activity), so there's no real reason to abandon the 380.
WB4SLI Rating: 1/5 Aug 22, 2018 03:06 Send this review to a friend
unstable firmware  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
don't waste your time. had 2. 1st went to white screen of death at 1st power up. 2nd kept resetting. look at other brands. it is very cheap. this is not a keeper by any stretch of the imagination/
AD0VJ Rating: 3/5 Jul 4, 2018 17:30 Send this review to a friend
1 year Report-ok but far from good  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had a pair of TYT MD380 VHF for about 14 months and while I think these radios have their place, I am not sure if it is a radio that an amateur ought to be using.

With the stock antenna, it is a stretch to hit a repeater 3 miles out. I can clearly hear the repeater for perhaps 5 miles. TYT to TYT about 11/2 miles is the max.

Programming can be 'fun' even for those with extensive experience. The lack of direct frequency entry makes them useless unless set up for the area you are (don't travel without your laptop and programming cord or plan on spending a couple days preprogramming every possible repeater you might need in beforehand)... again, not sure if built for an amateur with the current factory supplied firmware...

Lastly, in the beginning, battery life was amazing. Now, with perhaps 50 charges on each battery, I am getting about 8 hours of monitoring including perhaps 20 minutes of rag chewing before the battery indicator loses a bar--lose a bar and say goodbye to reliably getting out.

Would I buy them again? NO.
I looked at several analog and DMR HTs before settling on the MD380s due to price and the fact that they were properly set up for DMR repeaters (unlike the Baofengs at that time). So like all things radio, they were a compromise due to budget. So knowing what I do now, I wouldn't.
K3MRK Rating: 3/5 Jul 3, 2018 21:45 Send this review to a friend
Good while it lasted  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I purchased a TYT MD380 VHF in the fall of 2017. I didnt know you couldnt load the callsign database on the VHF model. I spent about 6 hours with a friend trying to program the radio and could not communicate. So I figured I'd order the UHF and try again. About 2 weeks later, I had a UHF 380 in hand. This led me to the discovery that the programming cable I received with my VHF radio was no good. I could now program both radios. I attempted to get the cable replaced, but gave up after someone from Tytera said they would email me with the info to replace the cable and never heard from her again.
The UHF radio worked pretty well for about 6 months. Good audio reports, fairly easy to program and I was really enjoying it. Then one night I was using it on an analog channel and the audio went bad. Very low volume and extreme distortion. Tried headphones, different channels, Digital, nothing changed. Unuseable.
I contacted the vendor I bought both radios from and was told only a 90 day warranty. The audio amp is a TDA2822. So I replaced it hoping that was the problem. It wasnt. So I've got a decent paperweight. I keep telling myself it's only a $100 radio. I'm debating whether I'll replace it with another TYT or get a better radio with a warranty. To summarize, it's a decent cheap radio as long as it works. If it goes bad, dont expect any support after 90 days. I still have my $69 Radioddity dual band going strong.
W4DXL Rating: 5/5 Mar 23, 2018 11:32 Send this review to a friend
Good Value  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is not my first DMR radio. I also have a CS-700. Both of these are great radios at a very reasonable price. No issues at all. Battery life is great transmit and receive quality is as good as any of the DMR radios. With the low price point and high quality I see a lot of MD380's out there.
SV2BWM Rating: 4/5 Jan 31, 2018 04:53 Send this review to a friend
Value for money...  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Great DMR handheld radio! Still value for $ counts...

WB9RAA Rating: 5/5 Nov 12, 2017 14:40 Send this review to a friend
Great for $85   Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Wow works super great. Only two minor observances; 1) Belt clip is on battery not radio, so buying an extra battery get you to buy another $3 belt clip! 2) When radio is on once the screen saver times out there is no sign of life, unless the audio great thru the squelch. A ficker of the led once every few seconds would be nice. People do nice firmware hack, so maybe some one will add this. The DMR modes can hit repeaters much further than normal voice. I can easily hit repeaters 16 miles away with the longer rubber duck ant, with 4 watts. Programming software is a bit clunky. I decided to write my own app to edit the .RDT file !

WA3SEE Rating: 4/5 Oct 29, 2017 03:00 Send this review to a friend
Neat little hand held  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The TYT MD-380 is an excellent introductory hand held for those interested in trying DMR. It can also be programmed for 'analog' FM repeater or simplex frequencies.
The MD-380 is available as either a VHF or UHF unit. I purchased my unit from an on line "store" after seeing VE5EIS' excellent review in Nov. 2017 QST.
CAUTION - Buyer Beware. Oddly, many Web based vendors are not real radio stores but design their web site to look like a real two-way radio dealer.
Avoid buying from odd radio stores.

My unit came from a warehouse in Indiana, neatly packaged, with a 2000mAh Li-ion battery, battery charger, two antennas, belt clip and programming cable.
After spending frustrating hours trying unsuccessfully to program the radio I found they had sent the WRONG cable. I found a REAL two-way radio store, on the Web, and obtained the correct cable. After that, programming the radio was just a matter of entering channel data for local repeaters and simplex frequencies into a file.

The radio functions fine and I receive excellent audio reports. The TYT MD-380 is an excellent value.
W9JTC Rating: 1/5 Oct 11, 2017 16:25 Send this review to a friend
Update  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Changing my review to poor. Had this HT for 2 months. Screen went blank with just white background. Nothing brings it back. Sent the radio back to the place where I bought it and they will send me a replacement. Thinking about once I get the replacement just selling it and getting something else. 2 months of extreme light use and failure is just awful. Seeing a lot of these in reviews with same issues. Hope TYT fixes these. Not feeling all that warm and fuzzy about it right now.
W1GHR Rating: 4/5 Aug 27, 2017 14:05 Send this review to a friend
Not hitting the repeater   Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Its a good soild radio. I have been trying to get out to the local repeater which, is only 4 miles away from my house. I am using the following program 1.32.0 which, I have been told its better than the 1.30.0.I live in Silver Spring, Maryland and, the repeater is from the Ashton Radio Club in, Ashton Maryland. I am usually getting a Red light when I key up and have only gotten Green and have connected my call lettrs without any responses.I thought that living so close to the repeater, I would not have any problems with hitting it more often than I am. I am woundering if, they make a base antennas for TYT-MD-380, or do they make a magnetic mobile antenna. I am willing to try anything so that, I can enjoy as they say, MY NEW TOY?
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