AndFlmsg comparison; three radios (one with interface) and three android devices 20190929

Ole Helgerson KI7MBR

Goal:  Check newly acquired Baofeng (BTech) UV5X3 and Baofoeng APRS-K2 interface cable for AndFlmsg suitability

Radios: HTs; Icom T70, BTech UV5XR. Base station; Alinco DR-735.

Androids: Moto G 2nd Gen., Nokia 3.1, Samsung 6" tablet

Test conditions. Indoors. HT's set at 1W, Alinco 5W. When testing Baofeng APRS-K2 cable, radios were adjacent to each other in the shack. For testing speaker-to-mic, the shack was isolated from the sending area (kitchen) by a closed door.


Baofeng UV5X3 with the factory APRS-K2 cable.

1.The cable would transmit header, eg. mode and frequency, but no message. Static burst about every 1-2 seconds during message.
2. With the cable, the UV5X3 would not receive messages from the Icom or Alinco
3. When cable plugged in and VOX turned on (level 1 or 2) the mic would still pick up and transmit sound.

UV5X3 "speaker-to-mic" with the Android devices.

1. Months ago, all three Androids would send and receive to each other across the table top. During this test, The older Moto G did not want to receive, but did prove to be a stalwart (mostly) transmitter. Although the program would quit after each transmission, the message would go through.

2. Using the UV5X3 speaker (Androids within 6" either side of radio), the Nokia was able to receive and decipher text messages and a test form accurately received by the UV5X3. The Samsung could pick up the content of the form as text, but the actual form with its message did not appear in the Samsung INBOX.

3. Using the Alinco and it's speaker (Nokia and Samsung perched on the radio), both Androids accurately received the test form in the INBOX.

4.  The UV5X3 had difficulty consistently transmitting text.

Lessons learned

1. It is probably prudent to check Android devices periodically across a table top for sending and receiving AndFlmsg. It is likewise  probably prudent to test Android devices against various radios.  Some devices might be not work well for moth transmitting and receiving.

2. For whatever reason, the UV5X3 does not seem as amenable for hardwired connections as the Icom T70 was with its EasyDigi. Even that set up has its peculiarities re VOX, now starting to send a burst of static between the header and the message which appears to prevent the receiving Android from decoding the message.

3. For my ht radios, the best method of using AndFlmsg now appears to be via phone; speaker-to-mike.

4. It remains to be seen whether the BTech APRS-K2 cable can be made to work satisfactorily. It might be a matter of finding the correct internal radio setting, or it might just be faulty kit. Likewise a quick initial test of an Easy Digi setup ordered for the UV5X3 showed no connectivity at all and would seem to be in the same boat.

End of report. Hope its useful!

73, de KI7MBR Ole'

p.s. The UV5X3, with the factory tri-band Nagoya antenna, does seem to work as well as the Icom for regular voice transmission to nearby repeaters.

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