Quansheng TG-25AT

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meg
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Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by meg » Tue Nov 04, 2008 5:13 pm

Review of the Quansheng TG-25AT

The Quansheng TG-25AT is one of several handheld amateur radios made in China and sold cheaply via eBay and their Australian distributor Hamshack. Presumably others are selling them too, but these are the places I've seen them.

This radio is available in two models - the 25AT for 2 meters, and the 45AT for 70 cm. As a newcomer to Amateur Radio, I was looking for a unit which would allow me to try the hobby out without breaking the bank - for $99, the TG-25AT fit the bill perfectly and so I purchased a unit from Hamshack.

The specs on this radio are:
* Output power - selectable 5 watts or 1 watt
* Frequency (TX and RX) - 144-148mhz
* Number of channels - 99
The radio comes with a recharging cradle, ducky antenna, battery and belt clip, I also purchased a separate speaker/mic for an additional $12.

While waiting for my Foundation license to be processed, I spent many hours (over several weeks) listening to the local repeaters from my home and work locations, as well as in the car. With an unobstructed view of the repeaters (ranging from 20-30kms distant) from my workplace, the Quansheng picked them up very clearly using the included ducky antenna, though (unsurprisingly) when working from inside a car (with no external antenna) or at my house (which has a section of the Darling Range in the way of the repeaters), the reception had alot of static, though was readable.

Finally my license arrived, and within minutes I was on the airwaves from my work location, speaking to another amateur via repeater. He returned me a very good signal report which showed how well this little unit works when there is good line of sight.

There are three operating modes on this radio, VFO mode, channel mode and a third mode in which both channel number (if programmed) and frequency are displayed. This is useful for checking you have set offsets for a repeater correctly. There is also a fairly annoying "voice feature" which will tell you which mode you are in or keys you have pressed, useful when first learning how to operate the radio, but fortunately it is easily turned off. There isn't a squelch dial on the unit, though there is a function to open the squelch fully.

The housing of the radio is surprisingly tough, and this unit has had a couple of falls onto slate tiled floors, as well as several drops onto gravel without showing any scratches at this stage. It's also survived being carted around in my laptop bag to work most days.

So what are the major drawbacks to this unit? Like several of the lower end of the more expensive brands, it is single band only and doesn't have extended RX either. On top of that, the manual is poorly translated to English, and doesn't mention many of the functions available on the unit. Fortunately the Tamworth Radio Club have written up some further instructions on using the unit, and this file is a must-have for anyone purchasing this radio. Even so, it helps to wear a Dr Seuss hat when programming the unit.

As a basic, starter radio for someone getting into the hobby, I've been very happy with it and imagine it would suit others in that category well. It's probably also a good purchase for anyone looking for an inexpensive unit to take somewhere they don't wish to take a more expensive model, but still be able to get on the air. In the spirit of public emergency use, it's also small enough that you may consider having one permanently in the glove box of the car, or your work bag in case you should have a need for communications in a situation where phones may be unavailable.

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Re: Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by Zebedee » Tue Nov 04, 2008 9:36 pm

meg wrote:As a basic, starter radio for someone getting into the hobby, I've been very happy with it and imagine it would suit others in that category well. It's probably also a good purchase for anyone looking for an inexpensive unit to take somewhere they don't wish to take a more expensive model, but still be able to get on the air.
Yep, that's always been my thought on both counts. Sometimes you don't want to take an expensive radio somewhere, but still want the convenience of getting on air.

One other thing I found with the radio that's a little bit of a "negative" is that the keypad doesn't do DTMF tones. But hey, we need to remember that this is a sub-$100 radio and it's not going to have every feature imaginable...

But if they ever come out with a "version 2", I'd like to see them lose the voice prompts and gain DTMF - that'd be my wishlist :P But even so, it's still a good little radio :P
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meg
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Re: Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by meg » Tue Nov 04, 2008 10:00 pm

Zebedee wrote:One other thing I found with the radio that's a little bit of a "negative" is that the keypad doesn't do DTMF tones. But hey, we need to remember that this is a sub-$100 radio and it's not going to have every feature imaginable...
A good point and one that I didn't think to include in my review.

I guess the other thing that I'd say is that (in my case), I don't think a handheld is likely to be my main radio. I'm happy to have a smaller feature set and lower cost on a unit that I don't use as much, and spend the cash for the extra bells and whistles on a base or mobile unit. Each person is going to have different usage needs though!

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Re: Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by Nosferatu » Tue Feb 07, 2012 2:44 pm

Zebedee wrote: One other thing I found with the radio that's a little bit of a "negative" is that the keypad doesn't do DTMF tones. But hey, we need to remember that this is a sub-$100 radio and it's not going to have every feature imaginable...
May be we can try whistling the DTMF like this guy ... :-"

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Re: Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by robbage » Tue Feb 07, 2012 4:32 pm

I doubt he was whistling DTMF. Perfect pitch is one thing, two tones at perfect pitch is a whole other thing.
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Re: Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by Nosferatu » Tue Feb 07, 2012 4:33 pm

I was thinking that he was whistling one pitch while humming another pitch ... which is possible ...

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Re: Quansheng TG-25AT

Post by ArensTim » Sun May 21, 2017 1:07 am

Nosferatu wrote:
Tue Feb 07, 2012 4:33 pm
I was thinking that he was whistling one pitch while humming another pitch ... which is possible ...
At the same time?

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