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Re: mobile two way radio for car service in new york
Generally 100-110 watts is the most you will find in a mobile FM 2-way radio. However, if your FCC license permits more wattage, you can use an amplifier to boost your power. More wattage does not necessarily equate into more range. Height, placement and tuning of your antenna determines your range. Check with your local FM radio dealer to determine which model will work best in your area.
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These are FRS/GMRS (Family Radio Service/ General Mobile Radio Service) radios. The legal power limit for FRS is 500 milliwatts - or 1/2 watt. GMRS on the other hand is limited to a much higher 50 watt level. The wattage you transmit determines if you need to have a GMRS license. Most GMRS radios are in the .5- 5 watt range however.
The likelihood of your XT20 being a 1/2 watt out on both FRS & GMRS is very good. For Midland (or anyone else for that matter) to produce a radio with a 1 watt output that can run on just 3 "AAA" batteries would be quite the feat! If Midland did do this, the radio's battery life would extremely short. To balance the needs of light weight and battery life, output power needs to be reduced.
Claims of 20 miles is crazy. If you had these radios on mountain tops 20 miles apart - with a clear line of sight between them - MAYBE - you could hear one on the other. This would need to be done under only the most ideal conditions. The actual distance you can expect to get out of a pair of any brand FRS radios in "real world" conditions (line of sight blocked by trees and buildings) is about a mile.
An FRS/GMRS radio limited to 1/2 watt output when used on a GMRS frequency that is close enough to access a GMRS repeater system could easily cover 20+ miles. The key here is having a license and access to the repeater. Repeater owners take a dim view of unlicensed users access their repeater.
Channels 1 thru 7 are FRS and GMRS. That is, if transmitting .5 watts, you can use it as FRS. If transmitting more than .5 watts, you will need a valid GMRS license.
Channels 8 - 14 are expressly for FRS. Only .5 watts transmit power is permitted.
Channels 15 - 22 are expressly for GMRS at any transmit power up to 50 watts. Even if transmitting .5 watts, you MUST have a valid GMRS license on these frequencies.
I know - more infor than you wanted and no vclear cut number for wattage - but there's no info on these radios on Midland's site or anywhere else that I could find. Good luck!
The Hi and Low power are built into the radio and is dependent on the frequency/ channel you are on. Hi power is 1 Watt and Low power is .5 Watt. The radio is GMRS and FRS. The FRS are low power and the GMRS are Hi power.
Channels 1-14 are FRS frequencies and Low power.
Channels 15-22 are High power and are GMRS frequencies.
FRS = Family Radio Service.
GMRS = General Mobile Radio Service.
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Any programmable UHF 450-470MHz mobile radio could be programmed to the frequencies of the Spirit MU series radios.
Your radios are 2 watts, so you would probably want to stay with a 1-10 watt, or 10-25 watt mobile radio, to have the best success. The current compatible model for Motorola is the CM200 UHF radio. If you are looking at a used radio, just simply watch for it to be UHF 450-470 MHz.
Then when you are ready to have the mobile radio programmed, the dealer (or programmer) will need to know the settings of your MU radios. These are easily read out over the phone, or in person by an experienced programmer.