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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held | Connect Systems CS580 Help


Reviews Summary for Connect Systems CS580
Connect Systems CS580 Reviews: 11 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $130
Description: Handheld UHF DMR radio
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.connectsystems.com
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K9WS Rating: 5/5 Dec 1, 2016 13:34 Send this review to a friend
Neat little DMR radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with the company and I own one of the first units sold in the US.

The bad news first. It is the first release and there is some room to improve. But other than that the radio is very promising.

Sound quality is excellent. I compared it in the same location with another major vendor ham unit on the same frequency and to my ears the cs580 sounded much better without any noise

One of the main features is to be able to use the radio without programming. This is done by putting the radio in scanning mode ( you can select the frequency range). When it finds a DMR station it will stop and you can "lock" on it with a button to join the conversation. Unfortunately I have not found a way to "store" the found station into memory. I am sure that will be added at some time.
My firmware is 1.0.5.

When you do have a frequency programmed into the radio you can also scan that frequency for any CC, TS, and talk group. However I think the TS may be hardcoded to the selection of memory channel. In order to have this work you DO need to enable that feature on one of the two side buttons and its two modes/button (short press/long press)

The PC program seems very rudimentary at this time and I would assume more features, if possible, will be added in next releases. What I miss mostly is control over screen backlight time outs and hang times which seem to be fixed at this time. I was also not able to operate the program on a mac under vmware fusion. While the program works, talking to the radio would not work.

The program has also an unusual font, which you can change, but it look a bit awkward. Zones, channels, TX and RX receive groups are added by right clicking on the parent folder to to add a new item, and the right clicking on the newly created item to rename it. Unusual, compared to some other CPS GUIs from connect systems and hytera
However, you can easily copy channels with right click copy/paste which makes entering multiple data less cumbersome. Channel programing misses a few items in regard to hang time control and I assume they will be added at some time.

The radio has a channel dial with 16 positions and you can have 64 zones with up to 250 contacts. The display is very large, with frequency display (if enabled) and dims within 2 seconds (haven't found a setting to change this)

I used to have Hytera pd35x which is similar in capacity, a bit thinner, but lacked the scanning feature.

To avoid wasting the limited amount of memory slots, I expect to ppm the radio using RX groups per channel with a dedicated TX TG and hope that it will be possible to override the TX TG by selecting it from my contact list on a cases by case basis. Also, being able to respond the received talk group, if different from the default, within a programmed hang time is essential for practical use.
 
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