Review for the First Homemade Dual Band Mobile Radio KG-UV920R
Concerning about WOUXUN, the Dual Band Handheld KG-UVD1 was highly impressed by the most of the national hams, which is the first Dual Band Handheld in China and had been successfully upgraded to the complete version KG-UVD1P. KG-UVD1P is regarded as the Dual Band Handheld with the best performances currently, even though the price is a little higher than other domestic brands. Most of the national hams happily accept it because of its quality, considering KG-UVD1P a sound investment.
KG-UVD1P commands a very good market not only nationally but also all over the world. It is publicly recommended and reviewed by Amateur Radio Magazines oversea. There were many foreign hams attending in the SEANET International Conference in Shanghai in 2010, showing the great interests in this transceiver. They got it because of its competitive price and strong features. Quanzhou Wouxun Electronics Co., Ltd. is the leading manufacturer for the Dual Band Handhelds in China. As developments continues, there are more and more manufacturers for the Dual Band Handhelds, however, the Dual Band Mobile Radio is still in vacancy. It is heard that WOUXUN started developing a Dual Band Mobile Radio, and got the Radio Transmission Equipment Type Approval Certificate by the National Radio Management Mechanism. However, we had been waiting for its official marketing until 2012. All products of WOUXUN are strictly manufactured according to the national requirements. It is highly appreciated and responsible for them to be proactive to apply for the Type Approval. As all known, the radio equipment with the Type Approval is much easier for the National Hams to apply for the legitimate license. The CMIIT ID for the mobile radio KG-UV920R is 2010FP6596.
The WOUXUN transceivers not only Handhelds but especially the new mobile are consistently with the unique appearance and the high-end designing concept. We are lucky to get the sample to test and evaluate at the first time. Hereby, I would love to share the review for the new mobile radio KG-UV920R with you all as followings.
KG-UV920R is advertised the DUAL slogan, Dual Band, Dual Display, Dual Receive, Dual Speaker, Duplex Cross-Band Repeat, Dual Control Interface. In summary, KG-UV920R is a mobile radio with the Dual Band, Dual Display, Dual Frequency and Dual Output.
WOUXUN KG-UV290R is designed with the standard size for vehicle units, while the size is 140*44*27 mm and the volume is almost the same as FT-8800R/TM-V71A. KG-UV920R is integrated with the detachable front panel from the radio body, and the separate installation is able to one-line available, which means that the Head line, the microphone cord and the speaker audio line are collected together to one connecting cable of the radio body. There are flat and inclined selectable for the front panel, while the inclined switchboard panel is the standard package which is easier for the users to read and operate on the inclined control panel when laying it on the vehicle units. The inclined switchboard panel was used on Marantz GX3000 before and got the sound impression. I love this designment, as the old mobile radios were used as fixed station with the flat switchboard panel, and you had to use an extra mobile mounting bracket to have a inclined view from the flat panel. This cute designment is helping KG-UV9230R to be more brilliant and substantial solid, not necessary to incline the radio body.
It is sweety for WOUXUN to offer the mobile mounting bracket for installing the separated radio body and the long extension cable as the standard accessories. The connection cable uses the one with eight cores, of which the connector uses the RJ45 PLUG easy for the Hams to transform. One more reminder that the line sequence of the KG-UV920R connection cable is not the simple straight-through and I suggest that the guys who love DIY read the instruction in page 10 of the user manual about making a professional connection cable for this transceiver.
WOUXUN KG-UV920R is created to structure with the cast aluminum, so the bottom is easy to cool down the radio. There is a special devise that there are four standing legs around four sides to make the whole body a little spare better for the air moving. KG-UV920R is workable on high power transmission, so it is very necessary for the radio to be configured with a cooling fan at the back of the radio body.
This transceiver uses a 20mm fan on 12V 0.15A , much thicker than other brands, to ensure that there is strong wind power. The fan uses the standard connector with the main body, so it is convenient for the users to change new ones if necessary. There is not much noise from the working fan, and it can link with the PTT. Normally, the fan is working on condition that the transceiver transmits, so it help the noise state in standby and keep the fan life. One more feature of this fan is that the fan will automatically work if the temperature is exceeding requirement even though the transceiver is not transmitting. You should turn on the Over-temperature Detection in MENU 37 ahead, especially when
it is used in a hot workplace and high-load work. An intimate idea.
It is apparent to see that this transceiver is structured with two independent speakers, one is big and one is a little smaller. I did detach this transceiver and find that there are indeed two ultra-thin speakers. However, I guess they are too close to make clear reception channels for both sides. There are actually three speakers, two speakers structured on the radio body and another one structured on the hand mic. The audio output from the hand mic is commonly used in the professional mobile radios at the early stage, and it highlights its benefits during the multi-vehicle radios and the remote separated installation. There are three I/O connectors on the radio body, the hand mic connector on the front panel, the PC connector by side and the double external speaker jack. There are rubber cover to prevent from the duct and other small things. The PC connector uses the RJ45 PLUG, which is able for the programming and connecting two mobile radios for the offset repeating on the same band.
There are some creativities for the front panel on this transceiver. Firstly, the large LCD screen, combining the charactor lattice with the preset symbol, better than the traditional preset eight symbols and the M word strokes, even though there is still a certain gap compared with the high density full lattice screen on the imported high-end mobile radios. Secondly, there are three colors selectable for the backlight, white, light blue and green. It is set in MENU 18, MENU 19 and MENU20 relatively for the transmit, standby and receive mode. You can set different colors respectively for the different work modes, so that you can tell it easily. In addition, there are indicators accordingly. Thirdly, the keys are used the hard plastic material and shined with the white backlight, which is easy for the insufficient light. Moreover, the composite knob to adjust the volume for two reception channels. I had thought it was for the volume and squelch but actually it surprised me a lot. There is also the Chanel/Frequency knob, but it is a little small because of the little space.
The hand mic of KG-UV920R is using a classical appearance and bulky size, which integrates ultra-thin speaker and balances innerly, which make it a nice touch and professional. The two ends of the spring wire are crystal and are easy to swiftly change. The users can order the special length of the mic wire if necessary. WOUXUN puts the hand mic(the one with the keyboard) as the standard accessory, whereas the mic without keypad is the optional accessory. This hand mic is not only supportable for the DTMF tone, but also for the remote operations. The keypad layout of the hand mic is almost corresponding to the front panel of this transceiver and it is even with the receiving/transmitting LED indicator. The hand mic can be regarded as a remote controlled KG-UV920R.
This hand mic is using the popular RJ45 crystal connector to connect the transceiver body controller positively. Although this installation takes up some space of the panel, it can avoid some troubles of lengthening the extension cable. Compared to some designment set by side, the positive connection is good for the life of connectors. In the actual operations, the force of the connectors is quite uniform and the pressing lines are not easy to be got loose or twisted. In a word, this mic is well praised by its strong features, well-made and good-touching, even better than some mics of the world-famous
WOUXUN KG-UV920R is Chinese and English selectable as the voice guide, which is very frequently existed in Chinese transceivers. As a homemade mobile transceiver, WOUXUN maintains this special function. There are two work modes: Frequency mode and Channel mode. There are two options in Channel mode, the channel number and the operating frequency display. KG-UV920R can be memorized 999 channels.Nowadays the memory spaces for the transceivers are very large. KG-UV920R supports two receiving channels (left and right) to receive the UHF and VHF signals respectively. There is configured by double covered potentiometers, and the volume is separately adjustable for the left and right speakers. The volume control seems traditional analogue mode, but actually it uses a CNC way to adjust the volume. When the user is adjusting the volume knob, correspondingly, there is a display for the adjusting volume level. The output voice of KG-UV920R is very high, better for the users to receive the calls clearly even you are in the noisy carriage. The squelch is using the complete CNC way, and it is easy to press the key ¡°9/SQL¡± to quickly enter the squelch level menu in standby mode. The users can swiftly change the power level(High/Mid/Low) via Key ¡°5/HL¡±. There are four power levels optional on Menu 3. Mid power is divided into two levels(10W and 20W).
The keypad of WOUXUN KG-UV920R is designed to be very full-functional, which does not strictly require the individual operations for the left and right work area. It is unique that most keys are with dual functions, and it is convenient to directly input the menu number to get the expected function.
KG-UV920R is able to input the frequencies directly via keypads(both keypads on mic and on transceiver). This is a brand new design, which is very convenient for the users who purchase the transceivers mainly for receiving and do not install the mic to swiftly switch the frequencies. In past, only the receivers of U/V band mobiles were supportable for the function of inputting frequencies directly. KG-UV920R requires the users to press the functional key ¡°2/MHz¡± to manually program the frequencies. It is not so familiar for the new users to see that the number keys are defaulted to carry on the corresponding functions at the first beginning.
KG-UV920R is also able to adjust the frequencies/channels by switching the knob. But this knob is near the MIC plug and its size is small, it is not easy to switch it when the mic is installed at the same time. The functional keys cover almost of the common operations, which include squelch setting, output power, work mode, scanning, left/right operating windows and receiving on single or dual bands modes etc. So the users do not need to operate the complicated menu frequently. TDR key is for switching single/dual bands¡¯ receiving and transmitting, and is very practical for the in-service operation. KG-UV920R can be used as the repeater without reconfiguring, and only a connecting cable is necessary to connect two transceivers as a repeater.
FM radio is a auxiliary function and it is really an enjoyment to use it to listen to the broadcast programs in the spare time.
There are many practical functions configured on KG-UV920R, for example scanning, CTCSS/DCS, CTCSS/DCS scanning, PTT ID, voice prompt, scrambler (optional), remote control functions(including stun, kill and monitor) and PC programming.
The highest output power of Wouxun KG-UV920R is 50W (VHF) and 40W (UHF), and working voltage is 13.8V. The RF amplifier of this transceiver uses the MOSFET RD70HVF1 from MITSUBISHIS company, this component is extensively used by the pop mobile radios manufacturer. The output power of RD70HVF1 can be reached to 70W on 175MHz while 50W on 520MHz. It is obviously that the KG-UV920R design is very reasonable, larger allowance will be less vulnerable under the higher SWR value.
We tested the real output power and the current of the KG-UV920R, as well as the sensitivity to voltage under high output power. The frequency range of this tested transceiver is 136-174MHz & 400-480MHz, which is really large range.
- 400MHz 410MHz 420MHz 425 MHz 430 MHz 433 MHz 435 MHz 436 MHz 440MHz 445MHz 450MHz
- 30.2W 28.7W 30.1W 41.9W 40.5W 40.1W 40.3W 40.3W 41.9W 39.4 39.1W
- 455MHz 460MHz 465MHZ 470 MHz 475MHz 479.995MHz
- 36.7W 32.3W 30.2W 20.2W 19.0W 19.7W
Note: Testing voltage 13.8V, High power
- 136MHz 140 MHz 142mhz 144 MHz 145 MHz 146 MHz 148 MHz 150 MHz
- 30.7W 34.5W 30.7W 49.5W 49.7W 49.5W 34.1W 31.9W
- 155MHz 160 MHz 165 MHz 170 MHz 174.995 MHz
- 30.4W 24.2W 22.8W 22.0W 17.5W
Note: Testing voltage 13.8V, High power
From the above testing result, the KG-UV920R gets the expected power.
Then we tested the relationship of the transmitting voltage and power, the testing equipment is KIKUSUI PAK20-18A, we tested the changes under different voltage, and transmitting frequency we chose the UHF central frequency which is the most concerned by the HAMS.
- High poer Voltage Power Current
- 13.8V 39.7W 7.9A
- 13.0V 37.2W 8.2A
- 12.5V 35.4W 8.5A
- 12.0V 34.0W 8.7A
- 11.5V 31.4W 9.0A
- 11.0V 29.9W 8.6A
We found that the KG-UV920R with the compensating ability for the voltage changes, if the voltage is decreased it will compensate by increasing the current, in this case, the output power will less effect the reduced voltage, but you will see this influence is lower than the other similar radios. Also, the KG-UV920R with the alarm function, when the voltage is reduced to 11V during the transmitting, it will come out a voice prompt.
There is no indication from WOUXUN that KG-UV920R is available for the wideband reception, but actually the receiving range is a little expanded. The available receiving range is working in VHF:136-174MHz, UHF:350-480MHz, FM Radio receiving in 65-108MHz.
This transceiver is with the Cross-Band Repeat function. For example, you set the 144.700MHz in the left band and set the left side to 144.700MHz and the right side to 439.625MHz, and these two crossed bands can be twin receive at the same time.
There are independent signal indicator in both left and right sides, in addition to the BUSY, there are nine divisions which means the signal strength and they can be successively displayed. We have tested the actual signal strength in UHF and get the following results:
- NO.1 NO.2 NO.3 NO.4 NO.5 NO.6 NO.7 NO.8 NO.9
- -132dbm -130dbm -128 dbm -127 dbm -126 dbm -125 dbm -123dbm -122 dbm -120 dbm
After testing, it is found that the radio signal is factually reporting the receiving signals. However, we also see from the above table that the radio signal of this transceiver is easy to get full, basically in -120dbm, 0.22mv has got full. It is seen that the receiving sensitivity is very high, for example, it is 0.18mv in 435MHz and 0.20mv in 145MHz, better than 0.25mv indicated in the user manual.
Scanning Performance Testing
WOUXUN KG-UV920R with multiple scanning functions of frequencies and memory channels.
We tested the speed of frequencies scanning under VFO (Frequency) mode, scanning based on 10KHz step (total 1000 frequencies), it costs about 150 seconds, that means the scanning speed of this KG-UV920R is approximately between 6CH/s and 7CH/s. It is not as good as the import mobile transceivers, but the scanning speed is always a shortage of Chinese radios. However, this KG-UV920R scanning speed is still faster than most of other Chinese handhelds. Besides the frequency scanning, it also supports the CTCSS/DCS scanning to detect the sub-tone parameters.