The Baofeng UV-5R is a Chinese import portable 2m/440 HT radio providing a new option for those seeking value. It lowers the cost of entry for new hams looking to access local repeaters on a budget. Already have a high quality HT? Consider a Baofeng as an affordable spare radio.
The Baofeng UV-5R HT
A few months ago I purchased a Baofeng UV5RA 2M/70cm HT to give to our 8 year old granddaughter when she gets her tech license. At the time I paid $35 with free shipping. Well, you can now get the same radio for $30 or less with free shipping!
Simply go to Amazon.com and search for “baofeng uv-5r”.
Want one more watt plus a headset? Try the…
Perfect for your “Go Kit”
For that low price it makes an excellent radio for a go-kit for emergencies. A spare lithium-ion battery is also a good thing to order at the same time.
Upgrade the antenna
I’d also recommend a two-band 14.5″ HT antenna with a female SMA connector for this HT. It really outperforms the normal short rubber duckie antenna found on most HTs. You can find it for $8.55 plus 5 bucks shipping at:
Baofeng UV-5R Nits
A few days ago Mark, a local ham, and I helped Bob, a new ham, get his UV-5R HT going on the local repeater. We found that radio Channel 0 cannot be used for transmit. Martin, another local ham, also has one of the new Chinese HTs on the air. The user base is growing despite the nits.
Software helps program the Baofeng
I have used “Chirp.exe” a free program to easily load area 2M & 70cm repeater frequencies into both UV-5RA and Wouxun HTs. The programming cable for the Baofeng HT can be found for $7.38 (w/free shipping). If interested, you can download Chirp.exe at:
Baofeng UV-5R HT Reviews
A radio this low in cost is not perfect. Read the Eham reviews for details…
The reviews make it clear you get what you pay for with the Baofeng UV-5R, but with proper expectations this HT has a place for the new and seasoned hams.
Rich – K1HTV