Simply stated, get an Anytone 878-I or 878-II HT if you can afford the investment.
- Great value to cost ratio at ~$300 (MAP), much less if you know where to purchase
- Great ham features generally missing from the commercial radios
- Supports SMS and APRS analog and digital (over DMR)
- RT Systems Programmer support for all the Anytone DMR radios
- Frequent firmware improvements (you don’t need to update but you can)
- Excellent pricing if you are a PNWD member
- PNWD publishes starter and complete codeplugs
- Other radios you likely will need to code your own (steep ramp to rolling your own)
- Purchase a good 15″ antenna (Nagoya Na-771) as the stock antenna under performs
- Or the Nagoya Na-701 8″ will be better than stock if you can’t tolerate the 15″ whip
- If you Tx inside a car, highly recommend a external antenna, small mag mount is far better than stock antenna
The Anytones are the most popular radios on Ham DMR. There is great support by individuals, clubs, IO Groups, etc. We strongly encourage you to stay away from the very low end radios such as Baofeng unless you want a cheap go-box, glovebox or backpack back-up. Even for back-up…Don’!