How Many 2 way radios Can Work on the Same Channel?

Theoretically, you can use an unlimited amount of walkie-talkies on the same channel (although in practice you might experience a few problems if you took that suggestion literally). Basically, there isn’t really a set limit. You could use as many as you like provided they are set up correctly. Anybody set to the right channel and in range at the time of transmission would then be able to pick up the signal and respond to it.

Most radios have access to 8 channels. These channels each have 38 separate ‘identification tones’. The user sets his/her channel up with the desired tone and then only other users who know the channel/tone will be able to hear the transmissions. As a result, there are, in any given area, about 304 different combinations, so signal interference is unlikely to affect you.

Please do not interpret this answer as saying that your radio has access to 304 possible channels. It does not. It will likely only have access to 8. Some less reputable manufacturers tend to falsely imply access to 304 channels; this is simply not the case. You will have access to 304 possible tone/channel combinations, that’s all.

To better explain the CTCSS codes and how they work; we’ll include a little information from Amherst.co.uk’s FAQ page.

“CTCSS stands for “Continuous Tone Coded Squelch System”. These codes are also often called “Privacy codes” If a CTCSS tone is selected; a CTCSS sub-audible tone is transmitted along with the regular voice audio by the transmitting radio. The receiving radio, set to the same CTCSS tone, will only receive audio if it contains that sub-tone. Interference from other users on the same frequency is therefore rejected (unless they are also on the same sub-tone). This is a way of allowing groups of users of walkie-talkies on the same channel to avoid hearing messages from other nearby users”.

So, in conclusion, you can probably use as many walkie-talkies as you like on the same channel. As long as the units in question are of the same type (either VHF or UHF) and have the same CTCSS setup, then you simply shouldn’t have a problem. You also shouldn’t suffer from signal interference due to other users (although you may still experience signal loss/interference/degradation from other sources). We have talked about combating signal loss elsewhere, so please see the other questions if you have any problems in this area.

 SOURCES

http://www.amherst.co.uk/walkietalkie/walkie-talkie-radio-faq-basics.htm

http://www.homephonesonline.co.uk/information/qa-walkie-talkies.htm

Benefits of Two Way Radios to the Hotel Industry

Over the years, hotel communication has had to change and develop, becoming more and more efficient than it was. This is courtesy of the advancement in technology over these years. Passed are the days that Two way radios were exclusively for police official use. Nowadays, these pieces of technology that have been improved and made even better are used for hotel communications. These state of the art technology have lots of benefits that any of us have been recipients of in one way or the other. Being in the hospitality industry, I can outline with ease some of the major benefits that these 2 way radios have brought into hospitality.

First and foremost, the service offered to the customers in the hotels has been improved. When taking orders in the restaurants back in the day, the waiters had to go all the way back to the kitchen to request for the order. Okay, this was not much of a problem for the small establishments. However, as the hotel grew and the number of employees grew, the kitchen area would get so crowded that out was difficult to get the job done. With the new 2-way radio technology however, all the waitress have to do is call out the order through the gadget and it is received on the other end saving on the time.

Also, being in the hotel business, I can testify that just like in any other business, there are major up and downs. However, unlike many other businesses, there is no space for screwing up. A single mishaps can cost you millions. The best way to avoid this from happening, is by communicating with the manager and airing out issues that might be there. Communication is key in this business and the sooner an issue is sorted out the faster you can move on and provide quality service to your customers.

Security. Do we really have to spell out the benefits that 2 way radios have with regards to security in the hospitality industry. The hotel industry harbors people of different kinds and who have different intentions. As such, the necessary measures need to be taken to ensure the security of the staff as well as the other peaceable customers. The rate at which the security personnel react to distress calls can be the determining factor to how the security emergency turns out. The Two way radios have greatly increased the speed in which the security personnel respond to security threats and also ensure that they are on top of every situation as every member in the hotel informs them when there is a security risk.

In addition to the above benefits, the Two way radios are cost effective and are also very easy to use. With the Two way radios, the management does not have to pay any network provider so that they can communicate. This reduces the cost of operation of the hotel by a great margin. To talk through to the other person on the other end of the line, all you have to do is press a button on the front and you will get through. It is as easy as that.

The benefits of the 2-way radios are numerous. This makes them a major asset to any hotel.

Whats’s a Covert Earpiece?

Thankyou for reading my blog, here’s a piece i really enjoyed reading. With their authorization i can repost it. I write plenty of my own content, but occasionally post other articles i find fascinating, thankyou for reading.

A covert earpiece is a miniature earpiece worn by an individual while being effectively hidden from plain view. It operates as a radio accessory in times when a user does not want other people to know she or he is communicating with others using radio earbuds. Also known as an invisible earpiece or a surveillance earpiece, a covert earpiece is often worn by government agents, corporate security personnel, undercover law enforcement officers and corporate as well as government spies.

covert earpiece

While many occupations require the use of a radio headset for communication, a covert earpiece is primarily used in instances where communication is of an extremely private and sensitive nature. This is common in cases of private security details and surveillance projects. Sometimes people also use a covert earpiece to defraud businesses and others. Examples of such instances would include someone using an invisible earpiece to cheat on an exam or to defraud a casino by receiving remote information while playing a game.

On-air television personalities may also use a covert earpiece, which is not distracting to viewers, but allows the person to hear relevant feedback from producers and engineers in order to make sure a taping or live appearance flows smoothly. Individuals may also wear a covert earpiece when making a public speech. By doing so, the speaker can receive important cues or changes in a speech without the audience even being aware that communication is taking place between someone located behind the scenes and the individual delivering the speech.

Some covert earpieces are accompanied by a discreet microphone, which enables two-way communication. These are commonly used by security forces with a need for such communication, particularly during surveillance operations. These types of accessories are not only convenient because they feature hands-free operation, but also because they allow undercover security forces to blend in with crowds without having to use a visible walkie-talkie system of communication.

A covert earpiece does not contain any visible wires and is designed to fit inside the ear without being noticeable to the general public. Some devices are even designed to fit on a pair of eyeglasses while amplifying sound inside a person’s ear. An inductive wire is sometimes worn around the person’s neck, but is covered by clothing so as not to be discovered by onlookers. This wire is not connected to the covert earpiece, but connects to a separate radio device that helps modulate sound.

The Icom IC-F4029SDR: A PMR 445 Licence Free Radio

You’ve probably stumbled upon this looking for information about 2 way Radio’s, hopefully this will help you answer some of those questions, if not please click on one of the relevant links within the article

Professional Digital Licence Free Transceiver

The IC-F4029SDR professional digital licence-free transceiver utilises the latest 6.25kHz ultra narrow digital voice technologies, providing digital clarity, razor sharp signalling performance and a level of secrecy from less congested dedicated digital PMR channels.

The IC-F4029SDR was recently featured on Channel 5’s “The Gadget Show” winning a comparison test against another leading manufacturer.

DIGITAL PMR 446 FEATURES

The IC-4029SDR utilizes 4FSK/FDMA modulation and 6.25kHz digital narrow channel spacing, which is half the channel spacing of the existing analogue PMR 446 system. This way, the 100kHz band width allocated for digital PMR 446 is efficiently divided into 16 channels, or twice the current analogue voice channel capacity making this product incredibly spectrum efficient.

A Path from analogue PMR 446 to digital PMR 446 in one unit

By changing the channel setting, the IC-F4029SDR can be used on existing analogue PMR 446 channels. This provides users with an upgrade path from analogue PMR 446 to digital PMR 446 in one unit. Being analogue/digital compatible, any businesses or private users currently using analogue PMR446 can begin replacing their analogue radios with IC-F4029SDR and enjoy digital quality as well as relief from congested spectrum.

32-status messages

32 codes of prefixed status messages can be sent and received. 16-character messages and 6 types of alert beeps sound that for call reception, are programmable for each message.

“Common ID” group code

This function is similar to an analogue CTCSS/DTCS code. By setting 1–254 common ID codes, the IC-F4029SDR opens its squelch only when a matched code is received. It provides quiet stand-by and group call functions while sharing a channel with several groups. The code “255” is the fixed code for an all stations call.

Security of digital voice

‘Eavesdropping’ by current scanner receivers is impossible at this stage. Since there are no other competing radios, initial users will have a high level of security in digital voice communication mode.

Additional Digital Features

Group call functions (up to 254 digital codes available)

Programmable 32 status message of up to 16 characters each can be sent to individual or group member radios when in digital mode. This is configurable by a PC

In addition to Icom default channel settings, other channel zones are preprogrammed to have matched settings with Kenwood and Motorola PMR446 models currently on the market. These radios can be sold to match Motorola/Kenwood current analogue configuration reducing the necessity to reprogram radios for customer’s fleets consisting of non- Icom radios.

ANALOGUE PMR 446 FEATURES

“Smart-Ring” and “Ringer” function

The “Smart-Ring” function checks the availability of your group members within the operating range. The “Ringer” function is used for manually sending a ring tone instead of a voice call. 16 types of ringing tones are available.

Tone find function

The tone find function allows you to find a tone used in a channel to decode a tone.

Built-in CTCSS/DTCS

50 CTCSS tones and 84 DTCS tones provide quiet stand-by. DTCS inverse mode is also programmable.

Lithium-Ion battery pack and rapid charger as standard

The IC-F4029SDR series shares Lithium-Ion battery packs with the IC-F3062, IC-F3022, IC-F34G and IC-F15 series. The IC-F4029SDR series is supplied with the BP-231 1150mAh li-Ion battery pack (provides 9 hours* of operating time) and BC-160 desktop rapid charger as standard. An optional BP-232 larger capacity battery pack and BP-230 economical battery packs are also available. Lithium-Ion batteries provide larger capacity and a longer operating time than a Ni-Cd or Ni-MH battery pack and allow flexible charging without memory effect.

Small and lightweight body

The IC-F4029SDR has a fixed type antenna and weighs just 280g (including BP-231). It measures only 53 x 195 x 32.5mm including the antenna. The aluminium die-cast chassis and polycarbonate casing combination is designed for durability. A rugged dual-rail guide chassis securely locks the battery to the back of the radio.

Alphanumeric LCD

The IC-F4029SDR incorporates an 8-character 14 segment alphanumeric LCD. An automatic LCD backlight is employed for night-time operation.

IC-F4029SDR Additional Features

Shares the same battery packs and accessories as the IC-F15/F34 series

Power on password

2-step Power save function

A first in the market, professional digital licence free radio

A Path from analogue PMR 446 to digital PMR 446 in one unit

Fantastic audio quality

Useful communication tool for light commercial users (initial users can benefit from security of digital voice)

Compact, lightweight body

High capacity lithium-Ion battery pack and rapid charger as standard

8-character alphanumeric display

32-status messages for digital PMR 446

“Common ID” group code

Existing analogue PMR 446 channels available with CTCSS/DTCS tones

Optional headset provides hands-free operation

2 year warranty on transceiver, 1 year warranty on accessories.

What is a Communications Engineering

Communications engineering is a disparate array of technological disciplines brought together under one all-encompassing banner. The disciplines considered to be part of a communication engineer’s skill set include telecommunications, mobile phone networks and Internet maintenance (but are by no means limited to those examples).

As we wrote earlier this month, any technology that aids in communication, from a walkie-talkie to a Skype account, is technically a communication technology; therefore, it also follows that anybody who works in these different areas can call him/herself a communications engineer.

The theory behind this move is that communications technology is becoming more streamlined and, to some extent, more homogenized (think of the ubiquity of mobile phones and social media) and so, it makes sense to bring communications technology together as a single subject as well.

As I type this, it is actually possible to get a Degree in Communications Engineering (as a single subject) from many universities worldwide. However, communications engineers frequently hold other Degrees such as electrical engineering, physics, telecommunications and/or computer science.

The sort of students that apply for courses like this (and subsequently work in the related areas) are generally logistically minded, tech-savvy people who are comfortable learning new skills and adapt quickly to new technology. Certainly, the money can be good for a decent engineer with a good reputation and an up-to-date skill set. Industries that rely on the expedient exchange of information (news networks, the stock exchange, big businesses and etc) should be the goal for the ambitious communications engineer (as well as the eager graduate).

Communications engineering is a vast and somewhat esoteric subject, because it combines so many different disciplines. Ideally, good communications engineers would be just as able to handle microwave engineering as they would a downed computer network, so it takes a smart cookie to be really good at the job.

Communications engineers are often quite business savvy as well. A big part of the job is dealing with clients or management, making presentations and working effectively as part of a team. Experience of modern business practice is not essential, but from the looks of things, it certainly helps.

The vast majority of communications engineers work for specific telecommunications companies and/or manufacturers, although some are self-employed as consultants or on fixed contracts.

According to Targetjobs.co.uk, typical job responsibilities for a communications engineer include: undertaking site surveys, agreeing to and staying within a client budget, staying up-to-date with technological information, problem solving (obviously!), creating test procedures, creating ‘worst case scenario’ plans for companies to follow and presenting companies/clients with the best way to manage their communication systems.

Why are Mario & Luigi known as the Mario Brothers?

 

If you’re within your 20’s, there is a good chance that Mario and Luigi games have been around in your entire life. There have seemingly always been Mario and Luigi games. There are some of us, I’m sure, who’d see it as a sign of the coming apocalypse. For the majority of us, less crazy, people, Mario and Luigi games mark the passing of the years, ageing to perfection sort of a fine wine.

 

Don’t expect to become a guru on Italian culture by playing Mario and Luigi games. In reality, when I had my first Italian training (aged around eleven) I did my best possible Mario impersonation when delivering my lines to the remainder of the class. To his eternal praise, my teacher never once chided me with the demand “do it again, and now be less of a berk!” Continue reading

Bluetooth headset buying guide

All of us have looked at a bluetooth headset and thought that looks nice, nonetheless it appears like all the rest of the earpieces on offer! Cnet have compiled an inventory of bluetooth headphones that would be worth looking at, we like 90 percent of them and one we do not agree with. We can’t prejudice your judgment by letting you know which one, you will have to guess.

A bad Bluetooth device will ruin even the most engaging gab session. That’s why it’s important to select the right headset, and this guide is here to help. If you need a great hands-free headset right now, definitely check out the Plantronics Voyager Legend. Not only is it lighter and smaller than most devices equipped with a big boom mic, the Legend delivers superb audio quality and has a design comfortable enough to wear with glasses. Another great option is the Jawbone Erawhich has ultra-advanced features such as a built-in accelerometer, powerful noise-canceling, and HD audio. On the other end of the size spectrum is the tiny Plantronics M55. Despite its small stature, the M55 offers voice prompts and vocal commands, plus a deep sleep function to conserve battery life. For more headset choices be sure to check out CNET’s list of our favorite Bluetooth headsets.

Three vital headset shopping tips

1. Decide how you’ll use it.

Bluetooth headsets come in a wide range of shapes, sizes, and prices depending on where, when, and how they’re designed to be used. The first step is to decide under what conditions you’ll chat through your device. Placing calls from noisy work sites, bustling city streets and restaurants, while driving, or from within the hush of office cubicles, will all have a big impact on performance and ultimately what headset you choose.

 

The sporty Motorola S11-Flex HD is meant for exercise.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

2. Lock down the features you need.

Despite being highly portable devices, Bluetooth headsets are complex products with plenty of features. They’re capable of noise cancellation, voice commands for hands-free use, PC integration, or even stereo audio. Whatever your specific requirements are, draft a wish list of abilities and make sure the device you choose meets your needs.

 

With noise canceling, Denon’s Globe Cruisers appeal to frequent flyers.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

3. Find the right design for you.

No headset owner is exactly alike and neither are their ears, or even their aesthetic taste. Some headsets are comparatively big and bulky but place audio quality above all else. Other devices are built to be extremely comfortable and worn all day in an office environment. While a third sect of headset strives to be as unobtrusive as possible, boasting ultra-tiny designs that are hard to spot in public. Some devices are better than others at accommodating eyeglass wearers, a huge factor for four-eyed shoppers.

 

Bluetooth designs can be quite striking, like the handsome Parrot Zik.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

Headset types

Professional

The first Bluetooth headsets were luxury devices targeted at corporate travelers who needed to conduct business calls either on the road or while telecommuting from home. Professional devices such as this reflect their consumers’ desire for pristine audio quality, long battery life, and comfortable fit to make it through a full work day without pain. Some pro headsets even link to both PCs and mobile phones to serve as the ultimate remote communication tool.

 

 

With its excellent call quality and comfort, the Voyager Legend is for pros, even those who wear glasses.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

 

Compact

Unlike professional models which tend to be large, compact Bluetooth headsets are designed to be small enough to go practically unnoticed. They’re crafted for discreet calls when out and about. As a result, audio quality, battery life, and other features typically take a backseat to stealth.

 

 

Plantronics M55

The Plantronics M55 is very compact.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

 

Stereo

Paralleling the recent rise of smartphones and their impressive multimedia skills, stereo Bluetooth headphones that also feature microphones have gained popularity. A quality wireless stereo device lets you enjoy music or audio from video without the hassle of wires. In the event of an incoming call, however, you’ll be able to answer without skipping a beat. Keep in mind that stereo Bluetooth products tend to place audio performance above call quality.

 

 

Possibly the ultimate in stereo Bluetooth headphones, the Parrot Zik sounds great and is beautiful and feature-packed.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

Key features to consider

Dual microphones

Many of today’s premium headsets feature dual microphones to engage in active noise cancellation made to cut out ambient din such as street noise, highway drone, and wind. It’s an ability anyone from the most seasoned road warrior to casual chatterboxes taking that odd call in the car can appreciate. The Plantronics Voyager Legend goes one step further, squeezing in a triple mic arrangement.

 

 

HD audio

A number of Bluetooth headsets support what manufacturers refer to as HD audio or HD-quality sound. Essentially this means that an HD device can receive, transmit, and reproduce audio at the 16KHz frequency. That’s twice the signal bandwidth of the typical 8KHz headset, resulting in clearer, cleaner sound under ideal conditions.

 

 

Multipoint pairing

From tablets to phones and PCs, a huge array of mobile device types now integrate Bluetooth technology. As you can imagine, linking your headset to multiple gadgets simultaneously is not an uncommon situation. That’s where Multipoint comes in, a feature that allows headsets to connect to two phones at once and make calls on either device.

 

 

Voice prompts and commands

While modern smartphone operating systems have voice commands and search functions baked right in, sometimes relying on a headset’s internal voice features is more convenient. Voice prompts and voice commands, once the purview of premium Bluetooth products have trickled down to all but the most basic models. With a device boasting these abilities, you can answer or reject calls, initiate pairing, or get battery status, simply by speaking.

 

Premium headsets offer plenty of eartips and earbuds to tweak their fit.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

Customizable fit

Just like hats, shoes, and other personal accessories, ears range greatly in size from person to person. That’s why a well-designed Bluetooth headset will provide a wide assortment of eartips or swappable earbuds to accommodate many different ear sizes and shapes. Additionally, some headsets are meant to rest outside the ear canal, others built to slide inside, while superior models offer a choice of both fit styles.

 

 

Near field communication

Near field communication technology (NFC) has seeped into many smartphone handsets on the market. NFC is not merely for mobile payments, it can also facilitate pairing of compatible Bluetooth accessories. Just place your handset briefly on, say, an NFC-equipped speaker system, headphone, or headset, and connection happens without having to muck around with Settings menus.

 

The Purity line of Bluetooth speakers and headphones from Nokia and Monster use NFC.

(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

 

Bluetooth profiles explained

There are multiple versions of Bluetooth, and not all Bluetooth specifications are the same, so you might want to make sure your two chosen devices will work with each other. All of the newer Bluetooth versions are backward-compatible, however, so as long as you’re using the more basic Bluetooth features, you won’t have much to worry about. Check out the various profiles and their features in the chart below.

 

Specifications Bluetooth 1.1 Bluetooth 1.2 Bluetooth 2.0 Bluetooth 2.1 plus EDR (enhanced data rate) Bluetooth 3.0 Bluetooth 4.0
Voice dialing Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Call mute Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Last-number redial Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Improved resistance to radio frequency interference No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
10-meter range Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
100-meter range No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Fast transmission speeds No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Lower power consumption No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Improved pairing (without a PIN) No No No Yes Yes Yes
Greater security No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Bluetooth Low Energy No No No No No Yes
NFC support No No Yes Yes Yes Yes

 

A deeper dive on features

Want to know more about some of the features mentioned above? Read on for a deeper analysis.

 

 

Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP)

Also widely known as the stereo Bluetooth headset profile, A2DP allows for a dual-channel audio stream through a stereo headset. A2DP is an especially popular concept with MP3 and music phones because it lets users listen to music wirelessly. It also can be used to make calls, and users can switch between music and calls at the touch of a button.

 

 

Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP)

AVRCP provides a standard interface to control TVs, hi-fi equipment, and so forth. This profile is used to allow a single remote control (or other device) to control all the AV equipment to which a user has access. AVRCP defines how to control characteristics of streaming media. This includes pausing, stopping, and starting playback and volume control as well as other types of remote control operations.

 

 

Dial-up Networking Profile (DUN)

DUN enables access to the Internet and other dial-up services over Bluetooth wireless technology. The most common scenario is surfing the Web from a laptop by dialing up via a mobile phone, wirelessly.

 

 

Hands-Free Profile (HFP)

HFP lets you use a gateway device to place and receive calls for a hands-free device. A typical configuration is in an automobile using a mobile phone as a gateway device. In the car, the stereo is used for the phone’s audio and a microphone is installed in the car for sending outgoing audio of the conversation. HFP is also used for a personal computer to act as a speakerphone for a mobile phone in a home or office environment.

 

 

Synchronization Profile (SYNC)

The SYNC profile is used in conjunction with GOEP (Generic Object Exchange Profile) to enable synchronization of calendar and address information (personal information manager items) between Bluetooth-enabled devices. A common application of this profile is the exchange of data between a PDA and computer.

 

 

Object Exchange (OBEX) Protocol

OBEX is a transfer protocol that defines data objects and a communication protocol that two devices can use to exchange those objects. For Bluetooth-enabled devices, only connection-oriented OBEX is supported.

 

 

SIM Access Profile (SAP)

SAP allows devices such as car phones with built-in GSM transceivers to connect to a SIM card in a Bluetooth-enabled phone. Therefore, the car phone itself does not require a separate SIM card.

 

Original source – http://reviews.cnet.com/bluetooth-headset-buying-guide/