This page is dedicated to the Baofeng UV-5RMHP & UV-5RA radio.
The Baofeng UV-5RA radio is an amazing piece of radio technology that adds huge value to any emergency preparedness effort. Whether you are a church group organizing an emergency response team, or a hardcore prepper family, this radio is invaluable!
The UV-5RMHP is the 7 watt version. The UV-5RA is a 4 watt radio.
Here’s a little basic information about these great Baofeng radios:
The Baofeng UV-5RA is a compact F.C.C. Part 90 hand held transceiver providing 4 watts in the frequency range of 136-174 MHz and 400-480 MHz. It is a compact, economical handie-talkie (HT) that includes a special VHF receive band from 65 – 108 MHz which includes the regular FM broadcast band. Dual-monitor and dual-reception is supported. You get up to 128 memories that are programmable from the keypad or via programming software.
The Baofeng UV-5RMHP version is the exact same radio but a full 7 watts of power vs. 4 watts with the UV-5RA version.
Here are articles written about the radio and the accessories available for the Baofeng UV-5RA radio. All the same information applies to the newer, more powerful, UV-5RMHP. I am personally purchased and tested all of the products I’ve written about in the articles.
♦ Original UV-5RMHP review. This article goes into detail about the newer and more powerful 7 watt version of the UV-5R radio.
♦ Original UV-5RA Review (Great Information!) – This article covers the radio itself, all the technical specs and a brief rundown on the accessories to buy.
♦ Radio and how to bundle the right accessories together (more Great Information) – This is an in-depth article on how to bundle the radio with different accessories to make the most effective use of this radio.
♦ Putting together an emergency radio cache for your family, your church group, or your response team. This article lists all the equipment to have a fully stocked and ready cache of radios for use during emergencies.
♦ SWR Antenna Performance Results. I tested many of the most popular antennas for the UV-5A radio and posted the results. Along with those results I posted a chart showing the different levels of SWR readings.
♦ 14.5″ Dual-Band Antenna – ExpertPower XP-771 Elite 14.5-Inch Dual Band Antenna (review and “fix”) – This article goes over the recommended replacement antenna. There is also a minor “fix” for this antenna as well to boost its quality even higher. The “fix” is easy and one of my OCD things.
♦ Vehicle Antenna – Tram 1185 Amateur Dual-Band Magnet Antenna – This article goes over the “must use” antenna for vehicle operations. The article explains in detail why the antenna is important than then how to implement the recommendations.
♦ 15′ Portable Dual Band (70cm & 2m) Radio Antenna – This article shows how to build a dual band antenna that is portable, 5′ – 15′ tall (multiple, independent sections), and builds in a lot of capability to the UV-5RA radio. The basis of the antenna is the DBJ-1 J-Pole dual-band, designed by Dr. Ed Fong WB6IQN of UC Berkeley.
♦ Highly Portable Dual Band Radio Antenna with Ground Plane – This article show how to put together an extremely portable, highly efficient dual band antenna. It is not at tall as the 15′ antenna mentioned in the article above. But it is more portable, lighter weight, and more easily put together. The basis of the unit is the Browning 180 antenna.
♦ Mini-Communications Center using Baofeng UV-5RA radios – This article is a great little piece of information describing how to turn two UV-5RA radios into a miniature ComCenter. It shows how to build an antenna stand holding a pair of Tram 1600 antennas. Then how to add a couple of UV-5RAs to the mix and BINGO! you have an instant mini-communications center.
♦ Great way to store and transport your antennas – This is a great, and short, article showing how to transport all of your antennas. The method keeps them safe, secure, protected, and it is easy to just “grab and go.”
♦ Larger, Longer-Lasting Battery – 3800 mAh – BAD PRODUCT : This article covers a battery that just shouldn’t be used because it doesn’t fit the UV-5RA radio even though it is advertised that it does.
♦ Powermall Larger, Longer-Lasting Battery – 3800 mAh – GREAT PRODUCT! : This is the answer to the correct 3800mAh battery to use. It has the right fit with the exception of the little “fix” for the front of the battery.
♦ Baofeng UV-5RA : Hypario Battery Case (AA batteries) – This article covers the use of a AA battery pack with the UV-5RA. It also talks about the need for a “Dummy Battery”, which is really important. It makes specific recommendations on which batteries to use, and not to use.
♦ Baofeng UV-5RA AAA Battery Case – BAD PRODUCT : Goes into detail why you don’t want to buy this battery case.
♦ UV-5RA radio usage with AA & AAA batteries – This article goes into detail about using your UV-5RA on AA & AAA batteries…the good, the bad, and the ugly. This is a must read before you consider using a AA or AAA battery pack to power your UV-5RA radio.
Alternative Power Option Information
♦ TENQ 12vDC Vehicle Power Supply (replaces radio battery) – This article show how to to use the power supply to power your radio off of a 12vDC power supply such as your vehicle. This is a great option to know about when looking at situations where batteries are discharged, no recharge capability exists or is limited, or simply want to work around the need for a radio battery.
♦ Etekcity BAOFENG Car Charger Cable (12vDC charger adapter cable) – BAD PRODUCT : This article explains one of those products that you don’t ever want to use and why.
♦ Car Charger Cable (12vDC charger adapter cable) – GREAT PRODUCT! : This article gives you the product information to charge your UV-5RA radio in its charger cradle but using a 12vDC power supply vs. 110vAC power supply.
♦ A portable power box charger. A 12vDC power supply option to charge the UV-5RA radio from my portable power box. And that power box is recharged using a portable solar panel system. This gives you more options to keep your UV-5RA batteries charged up and ready to use.
♦ Personal Solar Charger for your UV-5RA. This article explains how to use a backpack sized solar panel system to charge your UV-5RA radio battery.
Documents & Manuals
♦ >UPDATED – 1/1/2016< Baofeng Quick Start Guide. Read this document to get an overall understanding of how to operate your Baofeng UV-5RA radio. <AHTrimble – Baofeng UV-5RA Radio QuickStart (New)>
♦ Baofeng UV-5RA Manual Programming Menu Options Chart <Baofeng UV-5RA Menu Options>
• RT Systems UV-5RA General Radio Settings Documentation <RT Systems Software – UV-5RA General Radio Settings>
• Programming Channel Headers <https://ahtrimble.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/ahtrimble-baofeng-uv-5ra-general-radio-menu-settings.pdf>
• RT Systems UV-5RA Channel Programming Settings Documentation <RT Systems Software – UV-5RA Channel Headers>
♦ Good UV-5RA Operator’s Manual – Baofeng UV-5R Owners Manual (20141204)
♦ The original UV-5RA owners manual that comes with the radio – Original Baofeng UV-5R User Manual
♦ ARRL – US Amateur Radio Bands Chart. Shows the frequency ranges of each band and what level of Ham radio license is required by the FCC. Great information! <US Amateur Radio Bands 3-5-12>
I have a list of files for RT Systems Programming Software ready to download to your computer and install into you UV-5RA < click here to go to that page >
Misc. Ideas & Projects
♦ Mini-Communications Center – This article is a great little piece of information describing how to turn two UV-5RA radios into a miniature ComCenter. It shows how to build an antenna stand holding a pair of Tram 1600 antennas. Then how to add a couple of UV-5RAs to the mix and BINGO! you have an instant mini-communications center.
♦ A great pouch to carry your UV-5RA radio in. This is a brief article explaining the use of a military flashbang pouch to carry a UV-5RA radio securely and conveniently while protecting the radio.
♦ How to clone your radio. In this article I explain step-by-step how to transfer the channel set-up from one radio to another without using a computer. Very handy process to know about.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q – Can the firmware in the UV-5R radio be upgraded.
A – No. The chipset in the radio won’t allow flash programming to upgrade the firmware.
Q – When I try to select channels 1 – 99 sometimes it doesn’t work.
A – Enter the 3-digit channel number. Example 1: Wanting channel 50 you would enter “050” (“0” “5” “0”). Example 2: Wanting channel 9 you would enter “009” (“0” “0” “9”).
Q – Are there 128 channels total or 128 channels in “A” and another 128 channels in “B”?
A – No. There are only 128 channels totals. The “A” & “B” allows you to monitor two different channels at the same time but you still only have 128 channels.
Q – Can I transmit and receive on both the “A” & “B” channels?
A – Yes. You can receive on both “A” & “B” without doing anything because the radio is “scanning.” However, to transmit you must make sure you are on one or the other channels, the one you wish to transmit on.
Q – Can I skip channels while scanning via the radio keyboard?
A – No. Skipping channels while scanning is only via programming software.
Q – Can I use my radio while it is in the charger cradle?
A – Theoretically yes. But when the radio is in the transmit mode it can’t detect if the battery is fully charged. Overcharging the battery will shorten its lifespan considerably.
Q – Can I “clone” one of my radios from another? In other words move all my channel information to a new radio based on the channel information on an existing radio?
A – Yes, absolutely. I have written an article on how to do that plus some additional information on cloning.
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