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Reviews Categories | Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Base/Mobile (non hand-held) | GE MVS Help

Reviews Summary for GE MVS
GE MVS Reviews: 6 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: Base/Mobile VHF or UHF Radio
Product is not in production.
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W5GNB Rating: 5/5 Feb 15, 2019 13:28 Send this review to a friend
Great Radios.....  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have a set of these rigged up as a Two Meter repeater that I put in place about 15 years ago... It has Never had even a hicup... They just Work !!
KD7SU Rating: 5/5 Jun 13, 2012 15:35 Send this review to a friend
Great radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
Buy them on ebay ham fest make great link radios
K7NG Rating: 4/5 Mar 6, 2012 14:18 Send this review to a friend
good basic choice  Time owned: more than 12 months
Seems a lot of Hams aren't willing to consider putting a commercial VHF radio into service on 2M or 440 MHz ham bands as their basic base radio or even mobile in a 'spare' vehicle. Those that give it a little thought often find excellent quality commercial units removed after long service that work in ham bands without much effort at all, for very good price. The GE MVS fills the bill nicely.

Many were removed from service just because the system operator was changing bands, or was narrowbanding, or whatever. Others were removed from service because they were getting unreliable. Depends on where and how they were operated.

What the radio lacks is 'bells and whistles'. You get a good radio, a volume control, two buttons that might be 'monitor' (open squelch) and scan control, and a channel select. No VFO knob, no alphanumeric display, no 'alarm clock' function, etc.

The MVS could be found in several 'flavors', so the interested Ham should make sure what model they're looking at. There were 2-channel, 16-channel, and 256-channel units, and there are models that don't work on ham bands without some extra work, i.e. component changes. For instance, the VHF models could be 136-144 or 146-174 MHz; UHF might be 406-420, 450-470, or 470-512 MHz. There are low and high power versions.

Once you've found the desired model, you need the programming software and build a simple interface box and cable for RS-232 PC port to the radio.
There's a little bit of learning needed for the DOS software but that's all.

I've owned and used three MVS's and worked on some repeaters that 'disemboweled' MVS's and wired them up as transmitters & receivers, controlling them externally.

Since I lived in an area that had fewer than 16 usable 2M repeaters, I could set the radio up as a base station radio and have channels to spare. As a volunteer first responder I put the necessary channels in also, so I could, if necessary, use the radio, legally, on the PSB radio system.

The radios ran 24/7 for years.

However...Due to long use / wearout:
You may find that the buttons are worn out (don't work reliably) and you'll have to find a parts radio or find the assembly on popular Internet bidding venues.
You may find that the microphone connector in the radio, or the one on the microphone is intermittent.

They're old radios, some attention should be given to them after they are acquired/before they are put to use, but they still have a lot of life left - save the big bucks for other Ham gear.
K9CTB Rating: 5/5 Nov 14, 2009 07:00 Send this review to a friend
Great workhorse!  Time owned: more than 12 months
These rigs in both UHF and VHF flavors are beginning to show up at hamfests and auction sites by the truckloads! They are a bit large compared to the riceboxes we have today, but if there's room in your vehicle and you don't mind channelizing for your repeater work, these rigs are great for the $40 or $50 you'll spend.

Some commercial or government users simply zeroize the frequency list before releasing their MVSs for sale. Others remove the memory chip - an 8-pin chip easily obtainable from Mouser, Jameco, etc. Programming cables for the MVS are available on e-Auction sites, or you can build your own with a MAX-232 level shifter. Programming software is available and it seems like GE/Erickson is quite a bit more generous to amateurs than, say Motorola is, in terms of the copyright stuff.

My personal experience is that we had planned a series of packet nodes placed in limited-access areas. Since we needed reliable equipment and none of us are deep-pockets types, the MVS seemed like it would fill the bill perfectly. I bought several rigs from a surplus distributor. I built an interface for the computer com port and got a copy of the software (ver. 3.3). Programming is a breeze and there is the bonus that the MVS will re-boot to whatever channel it was on when power was removed, instead of defaulting to channel 1 like the Phoenix (another good choice for nodes) does. The microphone connector on the MVS leaves a bit to be desired however. It is a 10 pin DIP header-style connector on the bottom of the rig. It seems people know what a pain soldering your own connector is, so plug-n-play microphones for the MVS carry a premium price. If you're gonna set up a packet node, a mic isn't necessary and there is a PC board on the inside-rear of the rig that has points where you can solder audio and the keyline directly.

Performance-wise, the rig plays well with others ... like in a high-intermod environment. The MVS is good for 40 watts or so, and even the 150-174 MHz units (they actually have two different "splits" for VHF, and the 130-150 unit is pretty rare) will program and put power down to our 2 meter band without complaint.

I'm just a 1200 bps packet guy, so I have no experience with 9600, but I have seen articles on the web describing where to go when interfacing 9k6, so I would guess that the MVS can be made to perform well in that role.

As a workhorse, the MVS is an inexpensive and easily converted surplus commercial choice for ham use. If you have need for a "set and forget" sort of radio ... IRLP, packet, or APRS, and your budget is tight, look into the GE MVS series.

73 DE Neil
KE5PQC Rating: 5/5 Oct 22, 2008 18:13 Send this review to a friend
Built like a tank - Simple and Super  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I have purchased and sold these great radios for the past few months. The MVS make a great ham or commercial radio. The most popular and most abundant MVS is the 16 channel UHF and VHF model. Although rare, the MVS does come in a 128 channel version. These radios make great repeater, IRLP, link and just general use radios. If you can get your hands on one, you will not be sorry. If you need more info on this great radio, shoot a quick e-mail to

Cheers and 73's
KR3DX Rating: 5/5 Jan 17, 2005 19:27 Send this review to a friend
Good, Solid Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
The following are my personal observations/opinions: I've had my MVS UHF Radio for over 2 years now. It's performed flawlessly for me, very little intermod in urban Pittsburgh where all of the city services are on 453 MHz! With the tone squelch enabled, NO intermod at all. This rig has a larger speaker than my Motorola Maxtrac, therefore it's audio is louder and also contains more high frequencies for better intelligibility. The heatsink will get moderately warm during a long winded transmission, much cooler than the Maxtrac. Naturally, commercial rigs don't have all of the fancy bells and whistles that Ham gear does, but it takes a licking and keeps on ticking. Nice Radio, good solid performance, very durable.


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