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Author Topic: PNI Escort HP 82 Handheld CB AM FM Multi-Norm Review  (Read 690 times)

Offline R4002

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PNI Escort HP 82 Handheld CB AM FM Multi-Norm Review
« on: January 02, 2024, 1427 UTC »
So I picked one of these up a couple months ago.  They do not have an "export mode" or "RU mode" - at least the firmware in the version I have does not. 

It does, however, have the following bands ready to go.  It's legal to use in the USA under Part 95 in both regular old AM mode and FM mode on the standard 40 channels in the EU band.  Set it to CE band and it does the same legal 40 channels but is locked in FM mode only.

EU band 40 channels 26.965 MHz - 27.405 MHz - same as American CB radio band and export radios "Band D" - AM and FM modes

CE band 40 channels 26.965 MHz - 27.405 MHz - identical to EU band and the US FCC mid band, but is FM mode only

DE band 80 channels 26.565 MHz - 27.405 MHz - this is the German 80 channel CB band, which is also legal in several other countries in addition to Germany.  Channels 1-40 are identical to the EU band and the American CB radio band, AM and FM modes are allowed on channels 1-40, 4w AM carrier, 4w FM.  Channels 41-80 are FM only.  Channel 41 is 26.565 MHz and Channel 80 is 26.955 MHz.  Straight 10 kHz sequence with no skipped channels 26.565 MHz, 26.585 MHz, 26.595 MHz, 26.605 MHz, 26.615 MHz, etc. up to 26.925 MHz, 26.935 MHz, 26.945 MHz and 26.955 MHz. 

UK band 40 channels 27.60125 MHz - 27.99125 MHz - this is the UK FM 27/81 band.  4w FM, straight 10 kHz channel sequence, 27.60125 MHz to 27.99125 MHz.  27.78125 MHz is channel 19.  No skipped channels or out of order channel numbering for channels 23, 24 and 25.  In UK mode, pressing the AM/FM - BAND button once switches you between the UK FM 40 channel band and the CE band (CEPT European standard 40 channel mid band FM CB radio allocation, that is, the standard 26.965 MHz - 27.405 MHz allocation, FM only).  Whichever channel you're on on the UK FM CB band, it will flip you down to that channel on the CE band, which is sort of a neat feature. 

I2 band 34 channels  26.875 MHz - 27.265 MHz - Italian "I2 CB Band" - 34 channel band.  This is one of two 27 MHz 11 meter CB bands available in Italy.
Channels 1 to 23 are identical to the US band/CEPT CB band/EU mid band FM.  All channels allow use of AM and FM modes.  Channels 26 to 34 are the non-standard channels, channel 24 and 25 are standard CB channels, but are numbered in a non-standard way.

Channel 24 is 27.245 MHz - normally this is Channel 25
Channel 25 is 27.265 MHz - normally this is Channel 26
Channel 26 is 26.875 MHz
Channel 27 is 26.885 MHz
Channel 28 is 26.895 MHz
Channel 29 is 26.905 MHz
Channel 30 is 26.915 MHz
Channel 31 is 26.925 MHz
Channel 32 is 26.935 MHz
Channel 33 is 26.945 MHz
Channel 34 is 26.955 MHz

So Italy has non-standard CB channels available by using the I2 band.

IN band 27 channels 26.965 MHz - 27.275 MHz.  India CB radio 27MHz band Indian CB radio allocation.  5w AM / 5w FM power output.  Identical to the standard channel plan for channels 1-27.  Yep, it even follows the out of order channel numbering for 23, 24 and 25. 

PL band 40 channels 26.960 MHz - 27.400 MHz - Polish CB radio channel plan.  Poland CB allocation -5 kHz or the "zeros".  Identical to the EU / CEPT / FCC standard US 40 channel band plan, except every channel frequency is -5 kHz.  So Channel 1 is 26.960 MHz, Channel 2 is 26.970 MHz, Channel 3 is 26.980 MHz, Channel 4 is 27.000 MHz...up to Channel 38 being 27.380 MHz, Channel 39 is 27.390 MHz and Channel 40 is 27.400 MHz.  AM and FM modes are allowed. 

Counting the 40 UK FM channels + German 40 additional FM channels, there's 80 non-standard channels available right there.  Yes, there's also the Polish channels, but that 5 kHz offset isn't that much of a help in most situations as far as finding a clear frequency, at least in AM and FM mode.

I think I might get myself one or two Midland 75-822 handhelds, or one of the other PNI handhelds and do some range testing.  I know the Midland 75-822 can be easily modified to cover the 120 channel "low/mid/high" bands - or Band C/Band D/Band E. 

26.515 MHz - 27.855 MHz total coverage

Low band / Band C - 26.515 MHz - 26.955 MHz
Mid band / Band D / legal FCC CB band / 26.965 MHz - 27.405 MHz
High band / Band E  27.415 MHz - 27.855 MHz.
 
I believe it also can be switched to do the 80 channel German CB radio allocation and the UK FM CB channels as well.   The issue is, of course, that the German band extra channels are FM only. 


U.S. East Coast, various HF/VHF/UHF radios/transceivers/scanners/receivers - land mobile system operator - focus on VHF/UHF and 11m

Offline RobRich

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Re: PNI Escort HP 82 Handheld CB AM FM Multi-Norm Review
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2024, 1938 UTC »
Dropped a search. Spotted your demo video. :)

I noted the power cable appears to have a screw to secure the power adapter. Seems that would be a good spot for a simple counterpoise wire assuming it is grounded to the PCB; or perhaps easily modified internally if not.

BTW, I have not exactly been active on 11m in quite awhile, but I still have not had an 11m FM QSO with anyone as far as I can remember.
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Offline R4002

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Re: PNI Escort HP 82 Handheld CB AM FM Multi-Norm Review
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2024, 1741 UTC »
Dropped a search. Spotted your demo video. :)

I noted the power cable appears to have a screw to secure the power adapter. Seems that would be a good spot for a simple counterpoise wire assuming it is grounded to the PCB; or perhaps easily modified internally if not.

BTW, I have not exactly been active on 11m in quite awhile, but I still have not had an 11m FM QSO with anyone as far as I can remember.

It's a promising radio.  I did some more research on the Midland 75-822 handheld, and apparently the version being sold now is rev 2 or revision 2...and the modifications are...more complicated?  Maybe:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAiHCweEhOU

and

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_crpjtc4Rc

among others

The PNI HP82 is a nice rig.  There's a decent amount of FM activity now.  Most of it seems to be on 26.805 MHz FM, but I've heard 26.795 MHz, 26.825 MHz and others with FM activity. 

I've worked stations on 26.805 MHz FM and a few others, including in-band legal channels and on 27.600 MHz FM, 27.605 MHz FM and a handful of others.  It's a lot of fun for sure.  27.6 MHz FM makes sense, and any radio with UK FM capability puts you on 27.60125 MHz FM for UK FM channel 1 so that works too.

U.S. East Coast, various HF/VHF/UHF radios/transceivers/scanners/receivers - land mobile system operator - focus on VHF/UHF and 11m