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Old 16-05-2016, 14:40   #1
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IC-M80 Radio

The boat I just purchased has a Icom IC-M80 radio. Assuming it works - would I benefit with upgrading this to a newer radio?
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Old 16-05-2016, 18:35   #2
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Re: IC-M80 Radio

dmksails,
The Icom M-80 is a fairly old (20+ year old) non-DSC VHF-Marine radio....

Quote:
Originally Posted by dmksails View Post
The boat I just purchased has a Icom IC-M80 radio. Assuming it works - would I benefit with upgrading this to a newer radio?
Yes, you would benefit greatly from a new VHF radio!!!

Since the implementation of the GMDSS in the 1990's Digital Selective Calling (DSC) has been part of the maritime communications system....and this old Icom M-80 was produced before this, and as such has no DSC capability at all...

Not sure where you are located, nor where you sail....but if in the US/Canada, UK, Europe, etc...then signaling shore stations, other vessels, etc. is almost exclusively via DSC...
So, not having that will hinder you!

Not to mention that a 20+ year old radio, of unknown operational status, isn't something that most sailors would consider to be reliable, nor something to be thought of as part of their on-board safety system...


A new Class D, Marine DSC-VHF-FM, will set you back between $200 and $600....depending on quality and features...

Even if you didn't have the couple hundred dollars available in your budget, you could find a recent but used VHF-DSC-FM radio, for about what a nice dinner out will cost you!

I recommend Icom M-506 (~ $300 to $500, depending on version/features) or M-604a (~ $500)....


http://www.icomamerica.com/en/produc...6/default.aspx







http://www.icomamerica.com/en/produc...a/default.aspx









Some here on CF rave about the Standard Horizon 2150 or 2200...





Please let us know where you are located and where / how you sail...

fair winds...

John
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Old 17-05-2016, 13:15   #3
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Re: IC-M80 Radio

Thanks for the info. I'm currently at the Elliott Bay Marina in Seattle. If all goes to plan, I will be sailing all over the area at least 2 weeks out of every month.


I was also thinking of getting a handheld for the time being. Short range I know, but should be fine for within the sound.
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Old 18-05-2016, 20:26   #4
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Re: IC-M80 Radio

Quote:
Originally Posted by dmksails View Post
The boat I just purchased has a Icom IC-M80 radio. Assuming it works - would I benefit with upgrading this to a newer radio?
Yes--get a modern radio with digital selective calling. For a round-up of what's on the market, see

VHF Marine Band Radio Roundup 2016 - CONTINUOUSWAVE
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Old 19-05-2016, 12:27   #5
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Re: IC-M80 Radio

I'd keep it since you already own it and a lot of that old stuff produced in the USA or Japan is better than the junk from China they are producing these days. If you think you need backup a cheap handheld would probably do the job. My understanding of DSC is that it was primarily to allow contact with unmonitored stations and your mobile phone will probably do a better job in calling these anyway.
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Old 19-05-2016, 12:49   #6
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Re: IC-M80 Radio

Quote:
Originally Posted by ka4wja View Post
............

Not sure where you are located, nor where you sail....but if in the US/Canada, UK, Europe, etc...then signaling shore stations, other vessels, etc. is almost exclusively via DSC...
So, not having that will hinder you! .............
John,

Yes, by all means replace the old M80 with a new DSC VHF radio. That's a no-brainer.

However, sometimes your enthusiasm for DSC gets all balled up with other stuff. In the U.S., for sure, the usual mode for calling shore stations and, especially, other boats is NOT DSC. In my experience over 90% of all calls to other boats, shore stations, bridges, etc. is via VOICE, not DSC.

I know that the situation is somewhat different in other parts of the world, but the overwhelming percentage of inter-ship and ship-to-shore traffic is still VOICE, not DSC.

Which, IMHO, is a good thing! One small sign that the world hasn't completely gone bonkers :-)

Bill
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Old 19-05-2016, 16:14   #7
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Re: IC-M80 Radio

Bill,
You got me!
Quote:
Originally Posted by btrayfors View Post
However, sometimes your enthusiasm for DSC gets all balled up with other stuff.
Poor choice of words on my part!

Yes, the most common way of contacting other vessels / shorestations is via voice...(but some places have gone bonkers, 'ya know.... some don't do a "voice watch")


Bottom line:
He should buy a new radio!


Fair winds...

John
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