Misguided Hams on eBay and Mototrbo

I was doing a search on eBay the other day for DStar equipment. I came across this posting. Actually the person had a couple of beat-up commercial items up for auction using this or a similar description:

50 watt 32 channel VHF 136-174

You are bidding on the next technology in digital FM communications. Once I figured out that Motorola commercial Dmr was cheaper than my icom dstar equipment, i sold all my dstar repeaters and gear!

No kidding! Yaesu is coming out with DMR radios soon, but motorola, hytera, vertex already exist. DMR is an open ETSI standard and is legal on the hambands. You can buy a complete repeater new for less than $2000, and mobile rigs for less than $500. This technology fits 2 voice / data channels into 1 repeater! To do this with an icom dstar stack you would need 2 rp and 1 contoller - would cost $4500! Lets face it Dstar is 10 year old technology now.

Yes motorolas software is $250 - but it programs every version of mototrbo mobile and portable. The ham software costs $50 for each model of radio!

Once you've used commercial gear on the ham bands you will never turn back!

See my other auctions for a mototrbo repeater.

I have licensed cps and will program for free for winning bidder, or radio ships with 162.400 and 162.55 wx channels.

Included in auction but not pictured is new mobile bracket and new oem power cable. Radio is in mint condition and never seen mobile use.

Due to the technical nature of this equipment and the potential to brick the unit - No returns! all sales final.

Now I left the grammar and spelling as is. Let's analyze all these claims.

This used and beat-up stuff is supposedly cheaper. The current bid was $200 for a single-band radio with no warranty. I can now buy a NEW DStar radio single band for less than $300 with warranty. Why would I want to buy used stuff without warranty for $200 or more as the bidding is not over? Oh, and that under $300 DStar radio also has a built-in GPS unit.

Then I have to buy the programming software for $250. So now we're at $450 or more. Cheaper? No.

Actually the person says that all software for Icom cost $50 a radio. Not true at all. In many cases, Icom gives you the programming software for free. Or, in all cases, you can use the FREE software from Chirp to program them. Oh, Chirp does not support this commercial crap.

DMR is an open standard. OK, so is DStar. No difference there, but the poster leads you to believe there is. In both cases the Codec used for digital communications is proprietary. Again, no difference.

The other claim, once you have used commercial gear on ham bands, you'll never turn back. Well I have, and because it is not made for the amateur market, I did turn back and will never use commercial surplus again. It is not supported by the manufacturers for amateur use. It is made for commercial markets so it does not have the same flexibility for amateur use. Oh it works, but not worth the aggravation or expense.

The seller will program for free. Great, now that you have the radio, you want to change the programming? Good luck. In most cases, you'll be lucky if you can actually buy the programming software.

Finally here is another myth. The technology is 10 years old so it is outdated. Not true in being outdated. Yes, it is 10 years old, but it is technology designed specifically for hams! All this commercial garbage is designed for markets other than ham radio. Second, if I use that logic, in 5 years when something else comes out for the commercial market, then this Mototrbo stuff the seller is trying to get rid of is also outdated.

Sure, this commercial stuff fits 2 voice/data channels into one repeater. Yup, but at twice the bandwidth of DStar! Doh, didn't tell you that did he/she!

So he sold all his DStar stuff and went to Mototrbo. Great, who is he talking to? Yaesu has yet to begin selling a Mototrbo for ham radio and apparently whatever it is Yaesu will introduce for hams is not the same at Mototrbo. There are darn few DMR repeaters compared to thousands for DStar. Nothing for this Yaesu ham mototrbo stuff.

Hams have a choice. You can go with DStar with over 1,000 repeaters worldwide. Use a PROVEN technology used by thousands of hams around the world. Use a technology designed for hams by hams.


You can use Yaesu's commercial equipment, adapted for ham use. Designed without hams in mind. With hardly any users. With maybe a couple of repeaters. No one to really talk to. Price of their equipment still unknown, unless you want to use this "refurbished" commercial junk which is still at a price close to DStar's NEW with warranty equipment.

BTW, one only has to look at Yeasu's record of going against the tide. In the U.S we developed IRLP and Echolink. Yaesu went against IRLP and Echolink and created WIRES. Yeah, that's the useless "WIRES" button Yaesu still puts on their radios. No one barely uses WIRES outside of Japan.

Going against an established trend in Amateur Radio is stupid. Yaesu should have adopted DStar which is already well entrenched around the world.

In any case, don't be fooled by outlandish claims by people trying to dump used commercial gear on unsuspecting hams. Unless or course you are looking for a new boat anchor for your bass boat.
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