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Reviews For: SharkRF OpenSPOT

Category: Interfaces, Radio to computer, amp, rotor, coax switch, internet

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Review Summary For : SharkRF OpenSPOT
Reviews: 26MSRP: 204.00
The SharkRF openSpot is a digital radio IP gateway / hotspot which allows connectivity to D-Star, DMR, and C4FM digital voice networks. This device is completely standalone and requires no external PC hardware to operate.
Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
WA4SCA Rating: 2017-01-13
Easy setup, great support Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I live in a location which is at the extreme fringe of all the nearby DMR repeaters. Switching to the openSPOT has made all the difference. I have great coverage at the house, a wider range of talk groups, and can monitor what are normally repeater PTT groups without tying up the repeater. Setup was easy. The manual is good, but could use some more detail for a complete noob. Fortunately there are excellent videos, plus others on YouTube. The only drawback is that it doesn't support WiFi to use with your phone, but you can get adapters for a few dollars. Crossmode to C4FM works well, though I seldom use it.
W4HLD Rating: 2016-12-27
Love It Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I had a DV4mini prior to the OpenSpot.I had lots of problems with the DV4. The OpenSpot is a welcome change. Easy to setup and use. I have had zero issues.
KJ6BQM Rating: 2016-12-26
bad manual-> useless gizmo Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
The online manual setup doesn't work on Windows 10. It costs them nothing to write real working instructions that don't need a software engineer to set this up. That means shoddy work considering they were backordered 30 days due to this gizmo's popularity. For this much money I don't expect to have to go hunt up a solution on their facebook page, Without proper set up info this is just a little blue box with blinking lights that reminds you that you been had.
KM6CQ Rating: 2016-10-02
Great Experience Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This product works very well. The manufacture is very involved in the forums. Firmware updates are frequent and responsive to customer’s request. Reminds me of Elecraft customer service.

W2GLD Rating: 2016-09-21
Best Multimode Digital Hotspot on the Market; PERIOD... Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
First, let me say that I have been engaged in digital voice radio since the early 2000's and I have had experience with Project-25, D-Star, NXDN, DMR, and C4FM and I have owned and built several hotspots over the past ten or so years; to-date, I have not found a better product for use with digital voice. As of this writing on 09/21/2016, firmware version 0056, the device supports three modes; DMR, D-Star, and C4FM. One unique feature of this product is the ability to transcode from DMR to C4FM and C4FM to DMR, meaning you only need one radio to work both modes. No need to waste your money on purchasing crappy Yaesu hardware that is plagued with numerous interface and firmware issues. If you have a DMR radio, just setup the transcode mode and talk to your buddies on C4FM; though there aren't many there as the bulk of the users are in the DMR and D-Star worlds. For the money, this is an excellent device, that is quality built, has a very clean web interface for control and the firmware updates couldn't be any easier to perform, even for novice computers users. If you are new to DMR or D-Star, this is the device for you; don't waste your money on the DV4mini or ANY product from Wireless Holdings, they are plagued with software and firmware issues, lack support, and sound just awful on the network with VERY few exceptions. This device powers up and works and experienced users can even tweak the advanced settings to perfect their audio and operating conditions. This will be the best $225 you'll ever spend exploring digital voice operations on amateur radio. If you want to hear live audio from it or just ask questions about this device, give me a call either on DMR via "USA Nationwide" talkgroup or on "D-Star Reflector 030C" as I am always monitoring both. Get yourself a Shark RF OpenSPOT, you won't be disappointed... As for the DV4mini, if you have one, please stop polluting the DMR talkgroups and toss that POS in the garbage where it belongs so we can all enjoy the clean, crisp-clear audio of DMR again!
KK4MHI Rating: 2016-09-21
It just works, period. Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I've got a DVMega, DV4mini, DV4home, and now the OpenSPOT.
Out of all 4 devices, the OpenSPOT is the most stable and just works all the time.
The DVMega is good, but lately the Raspberry Pi seems to lose connection with the DVMega board modem forcing me to shut it down and power-cycle it.
The DV4mini...well, I think we all know the horror stories with that one.
The DV4home is also an unmitigated disaster. Google "dv4home review" for more info on that one.

But SharkRF has come up with a simple, small device that just plain works and I've been running it non-stop for over a week now with no issues.
DMR and DSTAR audio feedback reports are that the audio is clear with no packet loss.
From what I hear, the C4FM users are also having no issues with it but I have yet to try that mode. It just does so much I haven't enough time to try out everything it can do.

Add to that they've released a complete set of APIs to remotely control the device for anyone who wants to build their own web-based or stand-alone app and they're light years ahead of the amateur radio digital hotspot competition with maybe the exception of the bluetooth-connected DVMega hotspots out there since the SharkRF OpenSPOT doesn't currently do bluetooth or wifi connections.

But for at home or hotel stays (with appropriate travel wifi bridge device) it really can't be beat.