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Old 04-01-2012, 18:51   #1
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Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

Hi,

I am shopping for a new VHF and it seems like some units are much cheaper in the US than in NZ / OZ.
I read that some channels can not be used in the US. Do you know if the units sold there are locked down to comply?
Regards

Geza
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Old 04-01-2012, 18:57   #2
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

I believe all vhf units can be user-set to US, Canada and International frequencies. Our 13yr old one had that capability and our hand held and new fixed mount also do.

Mark
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Old 04-01-2012, 22:26   #3
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Look that the model you want has a U/I/C button:
U - USA
I - International
C - Canada

For what it's worth, so far in Mexico, everyone is on U mode.

-p
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Old 05-01-2012, 00:23   #4
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

I use U.S. model VHFs on my boat in the UK. There are two UK channels -- M1 and M2 -- which do not exist in the "International" channel set. One is for races and the other is used by some marinas. So far never been a problem for me, but you should compare the "International" channel sets to your local channel sets in NZ.
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Old 05-01-2012, 03:15   #5
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

I'm pretty sure they all use the same channels, they just have a different mix of simplex and duplex channels.
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Old 05-01-2012, 05:59   #6
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

1. Go to this web page: Marine VHF radio - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

2. Go down to the table at the bottom of the first page.

Bill
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:20   #7
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Make sure you get the simplex "A" channels like 22A etc. This allows you to do boat to boat traffic on these otherwise boat to shore channels. This means you need an USA mode I think.

cheers,
Nick.
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Old 05-01-2012, 07:28   #8
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

There are lots of expanded channels that are locked out in US radio's as they are not legal marine channels in the US but are in other parts of the world. They can be enabled via software.

Eric
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Old 05-01-2012, 07:38   #9
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

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Originally Posted by fairbank56 View Post
There are lots of expanded channels that are locked out in US radio's as they are not legal marine channels in the US but are in other parts of the world. They can be enabled via software.

Eric
If anyone knows how to enable Channels M1 and M2 in Icom radios via software, I'm sure a lot of people would be very grateful for the hack!
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:32   #10
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Theres no problem buying your radio on the US all modern radios have the 3 band sets. Just switch it to international when you install it

Dave
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Old 05-01-2012, 10:05   #11
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

I believe that UK Chanel M1 is the same as Chanel 37(A) at 157.850 MHz, and M2 is the same as Chanel P4 at 161.425 MHz.

UK Yacht Clubs use M1 (37A) & M2 (P4)
UK Marinas use channel 80 or M1 (37)

I have bought an Icom Marine Handheld. I note that it has channel P4. Is this the same as M2? Is channel 37A the same as channel 37? : Marine Radio FAQ's : Icom UK - two way radio transceivers, receivers and navigation products
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:06   #12
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

Quote:
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If anyone knows how to enable Channels M1 and M2 in Icom radios via software, I'm sure a lot of people would be very grateful for the hack!
It's not exactly a "hack". You need the Icom software specific to each model radio as well as the interface cable. As a service tech, I have software for some Icom models but it is not legally available to end users like yourself. You may find some of this software on the Internet and you may be able to coax it from a local dealer/service shop.

Simply switching to international mode does not get you these expanded channels. They can only be enabled via the software. With the software, you can program any VHF frequency within the capabilities of the radio. Iv'e used it to program in 2-meter ham frequencies. Some radio's can work at these frequencies, some require slight tweaking of the VCO's and others cannot.

Eric
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Old 05-01-2012, 18:07   #13
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
I believe that UK Chanel M1 is the same as Chanel 37(A) at 157.850 MHz, and M2 is the same as Chanel P4 at 161.425 MHz.

UK Yacht Clubs use M1 (37A) & M2 (P4)
UK Marinas use channel 80 or M1 (37)

I have bought an Icom Marine Handheld. I note that it has channel P4. Is this the same as M2? Is channel 37A the same as channel 37? : Marine Radio FAQ's : Icom UK - two way radio transceivers, receivers and navigation products
My Icom M604 does not have any channels at 157.80 or at 161.25, no 37a and no P4. Perhaps this is beyond the range of the set altogether?
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Old 05-01-2012, 18:09   #14
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
My Icom M604 does not have any channels at 157.80 or at 161.25, no 37a and no P4. Perhaps this is beyond the range of the set altogether?
Nah, we just need to get that illegal to have software

I'll stroll the torrents a bit

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 05-01-2012, 18:59   #15
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Re: Buying Marine VHF in the US to be used around the world

Thanks for the replies so far.
The VHF I am looking at is a Standard Horizon GX2100. I looked at the users manual and it seems like that all the channels are available for NZ (can switch between US/Internation/Canada). Maybe not for UK though.. haven't checked that.
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