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RC Radios, Transmitters, Receivers, Servos, gyros Discussion all about rc radios, transmitters, receivers, servos, etc.

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Old 01-01-2014, 01:28 AM   #1
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Default So I can get and fly on 400? MHZ or other lower than 2.4?

So there are radios lower than 2.4 ghz for the USA?

I am looking for 2 radios. A cheap one for a flying wing with a short rec antenna and also a very reliable one for my regular ships. I would like both to be on less and 2.4 ghz...Any ideas?

If nothing else I could use a whip antenna on 72 mhz if no other solution is around. I need long range because I fly fairly high at times.
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Old 01-01-2014, 01:48 AM   #2
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There are other frequencies that can be used but you should look up the FCC rules.

2.4 ghz is good for over 1 mile... its pretty hard to use "see and avoid" at that range to ensure clearance vs any full scale aircraft.
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Old 01-01-2014, 02:48 AM   #3
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Why not 2.4? There are lots of cheap used 2.4 sets available. As far as reliability, the newer gear is much better than the old stuff and at least equal in range.

Besides, like fhhubber said, 2.4 has a range far beyond where you can see the model and the other freq's dont have any better range anyway.

I think I need a signature.
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Old 01-01-2014, 03:01 AM   #4
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Actually, with an RX tweak for better reception gain at max legal (for our frequencies in the US) power, 72 mhz is good for in excess of 7 miles.

2.4 ghz can't even come close at current legal power.
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Old 01-01-2014, 04:13 AM   #5
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x2. I flew for almost 6 hours on fm and realized I forgot to extend my antenna. a ground check gives me an estimate of well over 10 miles if you believe the 1 mile for every 12 ft in range check (antenna down) that it states in my old fm futaba transmitter manual.

I flew through 8 of 9 batteries before realizing it. I was new, and it was only a slow stick though

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Old 01-01-2014, 05:31 AM   #6
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Never heard of any 1 mile per 12 ft rule for the old FM radios...

We generally expected problems to appear at less than 1/2 mile if it didn't pass 300 ft range check with TX antenna collapsed.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:44 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by fhhuber View Post
Actually, with an RX tweak for better reception gain at max legal (for our frequencies in the US) power, 72 mhz is good for in excess of 7 miles.

2.4 ghz can't even come close at current legal power.
I did not know that! It might be a little dificult to fly the model if it was over the horizon though

I have always heard that 1 mile was the practical limit for 72.

In any case, as you pointed out, visibility and control are the only limits that count - and thats pretty much the same for any of our freq's.

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Old 01-01-2014, 06:03 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Epowerreg View Post
So there are radios lower than 2.4 ghz for the USA?

I am looking for 2 radios. A cheap one for a flying wing with a short rec antenna and also a very reliable one for my regular ships. I would like both to be on less and 2.4 ghz...Any ideas?

If nothing else I could use a whip antenna on 72 mhz if no other solution is around. I need long range because I fly fairly high at times.
Hi If you decide to go with 72 Mhz, use Berg Receivers, they are made by Castle Creation, and IMHO they are the best of the best receivers for E Power, as they have the best ceramic filters, I like using a JR Transmitter and Berg Receivers, with the micro receivers, use a small piece of scotch tape to help hold the crystal in with, as they are a very small crystal and could vibrate out, the scotch tape prevents that. only use berg crystals with a berg receiver.

http://www.thefind.com/family/browse-berg-receivers

http://www.castlecreations.com/products/berg.html

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Old 01-01-2014, 06:05 AM   #9
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The 72 mhz (and most other "full range" systems) 1 mile practical limit has more to do with vision than anything else.
Its hard to fly a model that appears as just a dot.

The Polks Tracker III radio's built in scanner can detect a 72 mhz transmitter at up to 3 miles under the correct conditions. Its intended to just detect signals that are strong enough to potentially interfere with another model on the same frequency.
A good frequency analyzer can detect a TX at much further.

Detection vs useful range of course are not the same... and a lot of things come into determining the actual useful range (assuming vision isn't the limit) and it will vary by location even with identical equipment.
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Old 01-01-2014, 06:40 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
x2. I flew for almost 6 hours on fm and realized I forgot to extend my antenna. a ground check gives me an estimate of well over 10 miles if you believe the 1 mile for every 12 ft in range check (antenna down) that it states in my old fm futaba transmitter manual.

I flew through 8 of 9 batteries before realizing it. I was new, and it was only a slow stick though
Interesting.

I was at a very large electric fun fly in the Wisconsin area where a pilot took off with the antenna on the transmitter not extended. He got to the end of the field, and the model went in. That model was a $$$$ giant scale model.

Range checking my old Futaba radios got perhaps 75 or 100 feet of range. And, I did plenty of range tests on the ground with the transmitter antenna fully extended. Range under this condition was less than a half mile.

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Old 01-01-2014, 06:45 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by fhhuber View Post
Detection vs useful range of course are not the same... and a lot of things come into determining the actual useful range (assuming vision isn't the limit) and it will vary by location even with identical equipment.
Yup
Agreed:

Just because you can detect a signal 7 miles away with a frequency scanner doesn't mean you can reliably fly your model that far away.

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Old 01-01-2014, 07:02 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by fhhuber View Post
Actually, with an RX tweak for better reception gain at max legal (for our frequencies in the US) power, 72 mhz is good for in excess of 7 miles.

2.4 ghz can't even come close at current legal power.
The very last issue of the now defunct RCReport magazine, dated March, 2009 had a very detailed article on the new 2.4 Ghz frequencies, and how they compared to the old 72 Mhz frequencies. This report was written by Cal Orr, and covered 9 pages in the RCR magazine.

One of the tests he performed was a range test with the various transmitters on the ground, and the receivers that were located in a full scale Cherokee airplane. The Cherokee was flown with a pilot and a person to watch the various receivers located in the full scale airplane.

They found that the 72 Mhz radio tested had a range of 1.8 miles, the 2.4 Ghz radios had a range of about 3 miles. I won't list the radio brands, since this is four years ago, and I'm certain these 2.4 Ghz radios have evolved since then.

I've still got that RCR report copy, and this is quoted directly from that article.
Found it!!!
http://www.tmv.be/Technische_artikel...SPMarticle.pdf

One thing to keep in mind on these 2.4 Ghz frequencies vs the 72 Mhz frequencies is their antenna's and the efficiency of these antennas. Because the frequency of the 2.4 Ghz radios is about 33 times higher than the 72 Mhz units, the 2.4 Ghz radio antennas are much shorter. This is all involved in antenna theory, but IMHO, the tiny 2.4 Ghz receiver antennas do a better job. (To match the 2.4 Ghz antennas, the 72 Mhz antennas would have to be some 6 feet or so long.)

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Old 01-01-2014, 07:08 AM   #13
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some of our older high dollar fm stuff has 4 ft long antennas. my old futaba 6 channel has a 3 foot or longer antenna.

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Old 01-01-2014, 07:14 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
some of our older high dollar fm stuff has 4 ft long antennas. my old futaba 6 channel has a 3 foot or longer antenna.
Yup
I've still got a little old model built up that was originally built for electric power. And, that three foot 72 Mhz antenna screwed up the CG of that model!

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Old 01-01-2014, 08:37 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by fhhuber View Post
The 72 mhz (and most other "full range" systems) 1 mile practical limit has more to do with vision than anything else.
Its hard to fly a model that appears as just a dot.

The Polks Tracker III radio's built in scanner can detect a 72 mhz transmitter at up to 3 miles under the correct conditions. Its intended to just detect signals that are strong enough to potentially interfere with another model on the same frequency.
A good frequency analyzer can detect a TX at much further.

Detection vs useful range of course are not the same... and a lot of things come into determining the actual useful range (assuming vision isn't the limit) and it will vary by location even with identical equipment.
Group of guys I flew with "relay" flew a model across a strip of water 8 miles wide - Solent in Southern UK. Radios were 35Mhz JR Propos with no additional mods or adaptions ... each had to stay controlling to maximum limit of sight and then let model cruise till picked up by next guy. Distance was well over the mile for each. Later discussion indicated that 2 miles was the average distance each relay ... Guys were in boats as well on shore.
Change-over was effected by Walkie Talkie comms.

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Old 01-02-2014, 01:42 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
Group of guys I flew with "relay" flew a model across a strip of water 8 miles wide - Solent in Southern UK. Radios were 35Mhz JR Propos with no additional mods or adaptions ... each had to stay controlling to maximum limit of sight and then let model cruise till picked up by next guy. Distance was well over the mile for each. Later discussion indicated that 2 miles was the average distance each relay ... Guys were in boats as well on shore.
Change-over was effected by Walkie Talkie comms.

Nigel
Hi Nigel
That pretty much proves the visual range of these models. Most full range quality RC radios have a range further than you can see the model.

One issue though. Back in the 1980's I flew a number of sailplanes on 72 Mhz. We were flying from a field about 100 acres or so, and our pilots were located somewhere in that field. What could cause a crash was flying some distance from yourself, with your model flying perhaps 100 feet above another pilot.

The receivers of that era could not handle the co-channel transmitter located 50 times closer than the pilot, and severe glitching resulted. (The signal strength of a transmitter drops off with the square of the distance. Fly 2000 feet away, versus 100 feet away, and the signal strength drops off by 2000/100 squared, or 400 times weaker. Or, the transmitted signal of the guy you are flying over a long distance away could be 400 times stronger than your transmitter.

Don't know if this would affect our 2.4 Ghz radios or not. At least, no one has reported it. For anyone doing video work with a 2.4 Ghz video transmitter inside your model, it is something to be aware of.

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Old 01-02-2014, 08:17 AM   #17
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Since the OP has not chimed in since his one and only post - and has not made clear his intentions... it is just my opinion, but I think he was asking [IF] there were radios in the 400mhz range that he could use LEGALLY in the USA (as per the title of the thread) and if not - were there radios available in a RANGE lower than 2.4ghz that he could use.

The post raises several questions for me.

Why would you even WANT a radio in the 400mhz range? Failing that, why would you want something other than 2.4ghz? (Not specific as to brand - he just specifies a frequency LOWER than 2.4ghz.) Why? Why the short Rx antenna? Why a "whip" antenna for a 72mhz Rx?

Because he flies high? How high - outside the normal altitude limits? Long range is not required usually for line of sight in unobstructed airspace - but it IS required for say extreme FPV and out of view in an urban populated area. Of course if you're going to do that - then a radio on say... 400mhz... you know... a radio on a frequency that no OTHER model might be on in a populated urban area might be just the ticket.

Speaking of tickets, isn't a HAM license required to operate a radio OUTSIDE of the frequencies allocated for model use here in the good old USA? That seems to be an overlooked factor that the OP might want to consider - if he actually is going to try to remain in legal operation of his equipment here in the USA.

Maybe I'm not reading the OP's post correctly, but it certainly raises a few of the questions and gives very little reasoning - at least to me it does.

I could be all wrong here... but there's just not enough information there for me, and reading the original post just leaves me with questions instead of answers.

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Old 01-02-2014, 09:46 AM   #18
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I agree the OP's post begs all sorts of questions which he doesn't appear to want to answer.

As already noted 2.4GHz has ample range for any normal line of sight flying so normal RC flying within visual range then 2.4GHz is the way to go, without question. Only if flying FPV would you really have any requirement for more range.

Anyway, there are modules available in the 400MHz band, such as: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...mpatible_.html



So you would need one of these modules plus a Tx that accepts a JR style module (of which there are plenty).
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Old 01-02-2014, 10:46 AM   #19
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I just have this little alarm bell ringing in my head ....

If the freq band chosen is not 2.4Ghz .... can you have Bind ? I just thinking of possibility at long range that another Tx - not even a RC one could interfere to cause catastrophe ? But with a Bound system - that would not happen.

??

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Old 01-02-2014, 02:03 PM   #20
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Nigel,

I pretty sure that binding is just the same as 2.4GHz systems, obviously you have to use a compatible 400MHz band receiver. Binding is not something that is exclusive to a 2.4GHz frequency band.
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Old 01-02-2014, 02:24 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Nigel,

I pretty sure that binding is just the same as 2.4GHz systems, obviously you have to use a compatible 400MHz band receiver. Binding is not something that is exclusive to a 2.4GHz frequency band.
I don't know ... I have a pal who does a lot of FPV ... he's gone out 9km's with no problem - but I never really asked about freq. bands or whatever.

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Old 01-02-2014, 09:51 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Epowerreg View Post
So there are radios lower than 2.4 ghz for the USA?

I am looking for 2 radios. A cheap one for a flying wing with a short rec antenna and also a very reliable one for my regular ships. I would like both to be on less and 2.4 ghz...Any ideas?

If nothing else I could use a whip antenna on 72 mhz if no other solution is around. I need long range because I fly fairly high at times.
All of the radio frequencies in use world wide have preassigned channels. A search in google shows that the 400 Mhz frequencies are used for Meterology, Research, government, Radio navigation, Medical applications, Government uses, Satellite, and a few others.

Might not be a good idea to fly an RC model on 400 Mhz.

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Old 01-03-2014, 12:09 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
I agree the OP's post begs all sorts of questions which he doesn't appear to want to answer.

As already noted 2.4GHz has ample range for any normal line of sight flying so normal RC flying within visual range then 2.4GHz is the way to go, without question. Only if flying FPV would you really have any requirement for more range.

Anyway, there are modules available in the 400MHz band, such as: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...mpatible_.html



So you would need one of these modules plus a Tx that accepts a JR style module (of which there are plenty).

Just because an item is manufactured - and CAN be bought - does NOT make it legal to use in all countries of the world - AND - even if it might BE legal to use - there might be many restrictions and licensing issues that would need to be met in order for the operator to be perfectly legal.

I'm not a lawyer (solicitor), and neither am I familiar with HAM radio operators frequencies in the USA, didn't think the need would ever arise, but I do not believe operation of a transmitter in the 400mhz range to be legal - HERE. Might be and I am just unaware of that fact, but I just don't think so.

UHF frequencies are not used as CONTROL frequencies either as they are designated for signal transmission AND - that seems to be a law that is being freely... well shall we say BENT for the purposes of FPV.

There are just too many unanswered questions here. If someone WANTS to violate the law and intends doing it (no matter what country) they probably will anyway and certainly don't need my help. Might need people to point out the EASIEST and CHEAPEST way to accomplish it though.


The answer to the OP's post actually is simple.

No, not legally.

No, not legally.

No.

Good luck.




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Old 01-03-2014, 12:31 AM   #24
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I don't see any legality issues arising from someone asking if there are other frequency's, which is all the op did.

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Old 01-03-2014, 09:49 AM   #25
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It's a fair call to point out that 400MHz band is not legal in the US. The OP should be aware of that and take it into consideration if he is still thinking about going that way. I'm not in the US so I'm afraid aren't as up to speed on US legislation.

End of the day though it's his responsibility as importer and user of the equipment to comply with the local regulations, no one else's.
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