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Reviews For: Baofeng/Pofung UV-B6

Category: Transceivers: VHF/UHF+ Amateur Hand-held

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Review Summary For : Baofeng/Pofung UV-B6
Reviews: 34MSRP: 53
Dualband, Dual Display 136-174 MHz and 400-470 MHz Handi Talkie
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
W7PM Rating: 2013-03-31
Update on another UV-B6 Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
Summary: Almost a Perfect Copy of a decent Japanese Engineered Dualband Walkie, but at a third of the price.

After my first preproduction sample radio disappointed me, a BaoFeng wholesaler sent me a full production model, with the latest firmware. I am happy to report that all subsequent UV-B6 radios I have since received, tested and passed along to other hams, show they are quite a bit better than the first unit I tested and reviewed last month. RX Sensitivity seems much better on subsequent units as tested on my service monitor.

This new radio works well enough that I've provided some units to friends and recommended them to some of my disabled ham friends as well. The voice synthesizer is adequate for sight impaired hams.

With that being said, these radios are not as RX selective as other Japanese made HT's I've tested, but run really close in high RF Metro area side by side testing.

The UV-B6 receiver is so incredibly wide open that filtering is tough at best, but it does a great job with handling most signals.

Don't expect to use this as a base radio hooked up to an outside antenna and not receive wide spread interference, paging, etc. on top or mixed with your received signal.

Considering the price, some Amateurs feel strongly (as already seen here with other reviews regarding my earlier review) that the BaoFeng's are some Miracle Radio and the Red Sea has parted, regardless of those overly loving reviews, it's a cheap radio and made cheaply.

The receiver performance gets overloaded easily in strong noise areas. The unit is totally prone to all computer noise, FIOS ONT's and other boxes that are running in most homes.

Is this latest model better than a Yeasu FT-60R? Seems to work better to me, so there that is.

Is it better than my VX6R? No, not in the receiver sense of things, however the UV-B6 TX audio is pretty miraculous.

Both of the UV-6B and the UV5 series have some of the best portable radio transmit audio I've heard out of any of the 12 + walkies I have owned and tested.

The people I have provided these radios to love them. It's when I cannot tell if they are using their Yaesu Mobile or this walkie that gets me all the time; the UV-B6 TX audio is that clear.

Charger: The unit is 100-277 VAC capable. Some have US plugs on them, some have the UK plug and comes with a UK to US adapter. Some Chargers have the yellow to green (done) light, some seem to have just a green light, that is green is on all the time. Both types charge the radio just fine. Battery life is on the longer side and should be in the miraculous part of the scale. Out lasts my new Yaesu VX6R by about 4 hours.

Better than any review, is the fact that I am here to help anyone with question on this radio. I'm not a dealer, just a walkie enthusiast, so feel free to email me any direct questions about the radio and you'll get the straight answer, without the miraculous puffy stuff that I see posted on some of these reviews that are made by people who are actually dealers of the products reviewed.
K2FIX Rating: 2013-03-03
Surprisingly good for the $ Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I have the UV-B5, which is the B6 with a central knob and no flashlight. I've had it a week or so now, and have been able to play around with it. I wanted a new HT, something I could program without a computer, after an annoying experience with my VX2R. My Yaesu was getting on after 5 or so years.

The Baofeng is well built, and feels good in the hand. Buttons are tight with a definite pop when pressed. The manual is in OK english and covers most of the basics. The unit is designed for a worldwide market, so things like band limits don't exist. You are an adult here. Like wise there are a lot of programmable calling options you won't use in ham-land. CTCSS and splits are easy to program. It feels like a much more expensive unit. While there are two displayed frequencies, it is one unit, with one "current" frequency, not a V/UHF setup like the Alinco.

I programmed in a few local repeaters, on 2 m and 440, and have received decent audio reports-distances from 5 to 20 miles, with a line of sight. Listening in on a local public safety outlet, with a very, very close repeater showed the receive side a bit overwhelmed, but audio improved a mile or so away. In suburban use, the receive is decent-I've not been in any cities yet, so I don't know how it will respond to the onslaught of pager towers and taxi companies running way more power than the license allows. The squelch tail was a bit loud at first but once the radio broke it it got lower-there are also a few adjustments for squelch tail so maybe I fixed it. Picking up local police, fire, WX, etc, it works well. It also picks up FM broadcast, but will break in when your channel is used...The scan function is better than a lot of HT I have used-fast enough for your local sources. I've not yet figured out how to lockout channels or get alpha tags to show, but I'm working on it.

There are a few features that make you wonder, but they don't detract from the unit in ham the panic button.

Battery life after a few charge-discharge cycles is good-all day.

I don't have cause to use it on any other radio services, but they claim it is part 90 certified. If you want an HT that is easy to use and you don't have to stress about dropping/losing, it does well. I've yet to find the "stupid" feature, or the obtuse command set, or like the VX2r, the software conflicts (and no easy way to program the device by hand). Overall, while it is not a Motorola product by a long shot, it stands up to my older Alinco, and my VX2R. For the $53 shipped from 409 shop, charger and earpiece included, it's a steal, and easier to use than the VX2R.
PD0AC Rating: 2013-02-15
Almost perfect. Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I review Chinese low cost radios on my blog. I actually own the B5 version, which is technically identical. Instead of a flashlight the B5 model offers a rotary encoder and an alarm button.

It was interesting to see that, contrary to all other owners' experiences, the first review speaks of a poor receiver. This is not my experience. Actually the receiver is one of the few capable of dealing with all the intermod and overloading problems I have to deal with here.

For a <$50 hand held this was unexpected. Its qualities were later confirmed by doing a series of measurements in our RF Test Lab. L.O. phase noise is low, and this radio actually has a reasonable front end. TX audio is excellent too; no mods required. Harmonic suppression is fine. Spectrum Analyzer screen shots can be found on my blog.

From the perspective of a ham, and taking the price into account. this radio deserves a 5 out of 5 easily. If you intend to use this radio for other purposes, one point could be subtracted. The radio doesn't offer 2.5KHz steps, and the FM radio (although sensitive) is buggy.
PA2OLD Rating: 2013-02-12
Fine Radio Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I can not find me in the criticism of W7PM, the receiver of my UV-B5 (UV-B6) is actually very good!
This is evident from the measurements that Hans PD0AC performed on the UV-5B.
Maybe W7PM has a so called "Monday morning model", but so far the response from owners who have a UV-B5 are just very positive.
See for the test: