Monday, April 22, 2013

Baofeng UV-5R: Tri-band

I have not been paying much attention to the tri-band posts on the UV-5R (instead looking at the TYT TH-UV3R running 220 or the 2M/220 specific model of the UV-5R). The following post did catch my eye with its certainty that it works on all newer firmwares.

Instructions on how to make all recent UV_R5 radios run 200 band wiith 136+400mh
"I have just come back to the forum after a month or so and I am suprised to see the big response there is to my original post . Look there is no debate if it works or not------------it does.All UV-R5 radios- Firmware BFB291 and Newer-will TX-RX 220 with 2 meter and 440. I have done this to 3 radios The new 220 radio is a ADVERTISEING GIMMICKbaofeng did not advertise that all the new radios would be 220 and did not release instructions-I discovered this through trial and error 
This is exactly how to do it.
This method is for Firmware BFB291 and Newerto find your firmware --turn on radio while holding the 3 button- look at screen 
download this program BF5R_VIP_v120725_BFB291_ENG(VB6).zip
from here-----
these instrucktions assume your radios cable driver is installed correctly if they are not this program can be used to get them going.
1---unpack zip ---install and launch program.
2---press comunication menu and click com 3
3- plug in radio and press the-- Other-- menu
4--click the check box that says work band-it will switch from 136-174/ 400-520 to 136-174/ 200-260 --type in 200 to 260 in the UHF boxs.
5--- press write to radio on the 'Other' menu--your radio led will flash during download.
6-- press VFO button on radio to VFO mode and you will see on channel A__ the 400 band number has changed to 200.000you can now program 200 band simplex--- and repeters on the radio- -2 meter and 400 band programs will continue to work.
7--now that the radio has been switched to 200 bandPress the 'program' button on software --press ""read from radio"" this will switch the software so that the spread sheet will take 200 band.
8-- press the edit menu -press channel informmation you will see the 2 meter-and 400 repeters that are on the radio on the spread sheet and now it will accept 200 band programing but not 400.
9-- press program menu --press write to radio and now 2 meter -400 and 200 band programs will be working all at the same time!!!!!!
9-- remember!! first you must switch the radio 200 0r 400 with the '' Other"" menu, Then upload back to the software to program with the spread sheet.-- then write back to the radio to make allthem work.To use 200 with 400 and 2 meter the frequencys you want to use must be in a program.
10-- Follow theses instrucktions and you will have a 3 band radio instead of 2 Do this before you say it doesnt work!!!!

Maybe all radios are tri-band. I should pull out my UV-3R and see if I can work some DX on 20M. Crazy, crazy, crazy.


  1. Has anyone confirmed the power output? I keep reading that this works, but no talk about what the observed output is on all bands after the hack.

    1. I think that was asked on the Yahoo group, too, but the reply has been "I can hit my repeater with it" but no actual measurements.

  2. That was my point. When I did the mod on my UV-3R we measured about 50 mW. I can hit my repeater too, when it's line of sight, which for LIMARC is easy since it's on the tallest building out here. I see that the "official" version for sale by RadioMart is rated at "greater-than 3 Watts", and the people modding the newer TYT UV3R are getting 1.8 Watts on 220 I think. I think I'm going to pick one up soon, so if no one else tests it, I will.

  3. Now all we need is the $3.71 tri-band antenna.

  4. I did the mod last night on a BFB297 144/440. I was able to program 144/220/440 frequencies into the radio. I was not able to receive or transmit on any of the 220 frequencies when testing against another "real" 220 radio in simplex 2 feet away. 144/440 works fine.

    I'll play with it some more tonight.

  5. My understanding is that while you can "technically" open up the UV-5R to the 220 Mhz range, in reality the internals are simply not built for it. So, you can hack the radio and expand available frequencies in the 130 range, but I haven't heard from anyone who has 220 working properly. -John

  6. After doing more research, looks like the filters need to be changed to work in 220. Even with filter change, power level still is not optimized for 220.

    1. So I guess this is just a fluke and has no real use.

  7. This pretty much explains it - "You just can't get Ferrari features out of a Kia"

  8. its not working at all it let you set 245.000mhz but you cant transmit anything.

    i dont know why you doing this and act like you are the founder of the warm water

  9. I discovered the same features described above on my F9V2+ and saved several 220MHz repeaters as channels with offsets & tones. I mucked around trying to hit those repeaters for one night experimenting with the stock rubber duck antenna and a Nagoya ut-108uv antenna. Never got a reply. I was transmitting at 8 watts (high power). Although the radio was programmed to transmit at 223MHz, a friend heard me barely break squelch on 446MHz (1st harmonic). Then the radio intermittently would loose power, and the next morning it wouldn't turn on at all. Fortunately, Foscam in Houston sent me a new radio on warranty. Beware transmitting 222MHz using UV-5R variants though - it caused me radio-cide and seems to have the possibility of 70cm interference.

  10. These mods will make your radio transmit full power on the 70 cm harmonic! 222 at 200mw will transmit 5 watts at 444 Mhz. This is an illegal transmitter! NEVER 220 MOD ANY RADIO.