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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Myself and a few buddies are looking to add radios for communications. Currently using GMRS and UV5R's and works ok, but need more volume and range in the woods. I've been looking at Rugged, and SxS Radios mostly and both look like good options. SxS is less expensive for what appears to be the same radio (TYT TH-8600/ABM25) , but currently show to be all out of stock and I'm not seeing them anywhere else either. I'm not really looking for intercom as we don't plan to use headsets. Mostly looking for just a decent quality radio that is not limited, and add an external speaker for better placement and volume. A decent dash mount would also be good. I've searched, but all posts I have found are either old, or just questions about a particular setup. What is the recommended setup for something like this?
 

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The TYT TH-8600 is a good radio and I've been using one for a while with no issues. Clear reception and good range. Programming is easy with the included software and cable. They are available on Amazon.
 

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What is the volume like? Can you hear and use it moving or does one need to stop to understand what is being said?
 

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If you are sure you dont ever plan to use a com with headsets, I would recommend the 25 watt dual band waterproof radio that SXS sells with an additional external speaker
25w Waterproof Dual Band Mobile Radio Bundle

If you think you might want to add a com and headsets someday then I would go with the 60 watt dual band Rugged Radio with an external speaker.
Shop around and you can get them way cheaper than the advertised Rugged Radio price

Radio Kit - RDM-DB Digital Business Band Mobile Radio with Antenna

Either way I would defiantly recommend a Dual band especially with things moving more to GMRS
 

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Jeff, the TYT TH-8600 is what SXS Radio sells. It comes preprogrammed for GMRS frequencies with an antenna and cable. However I don't think the antenna that's packaged is tuned for VHF ??? Not sure
 

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Jeff, the TYT TH-8600 is what SXS Radio sells. It comes preprogrammed for GMRS frequencies with an antenna and cable. However I don't think the antenna that's packaged is tuned for VHF ??? Not sure
I understand but for only about $40 more bucks the one from SXS comes fully programmed with many common channels like the ones Rugged offers. You can also request additional channels you may want and he will set it up for you at no charge .
I recommend SXS Radios just because it is easier for most people with little to no experience not to have to do the programming and I like to support a small company that offers good service
But I agree you can save a little buying it on eBay
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If you are sure you dont ever plan to use a com with headsets, I would recommend the 25 watt dual band waterproof radio that SXS sells with an additional external speaker
25w Waterproof Dual Band Mobile Radio Bundle

If you think you might want to add a com and headsets someday then I would go with the 60 watt dual band Rugged Radio with an external speaker.
Shop around and you can get them way cheaper than the advertised Rugged Radio price

Radio Kit - RDM-DB Digital Business Band Mobile Radio with Antenna

Either way I would defiantly recommend a Dual band especially with things moving more to GMRS
The SxS radio you mentioned is what I am leaning towards, only i'm thinking the bundle with the Tri-band NGP antenna. This way I am covered for most anything. I'm not affraid of programming my own, but buying all of the components individually only saves me a few bucks, and they already have many channels programmed so i'm pretty happy supporting a company like that. Rugged seems to be considerably more $$ for a similar setup.
 
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I have several TYT TH8600 radios on both my RZR and my ATVs. I like them and they are waterproof and dust proof. Bear in mind.....if you use an external speaker they are no longer dust and waterproof. Rugged radios installs a jumper to make the intercom system work and still be waterproof. I’m sure someone could figure out how to do it but I don’t know of any place online that could walk you through the install.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have several TYT TH8600 radios on both my RZR and my ATVs. I like them and they are waterproof and dust proof. Bear in mind.....if you use an external speaker they are no longer dust and waterproof. Rugged radios installs a jumper to make the intercom system work and still be waterproof. I’m sure someone could figure out how to do it but I don’t know of any place online that could walk you through the install.
Good to know, but as long as it stays water 'resistant' then i'm pretty happy. I don't submerge mine and the most water it might see is a splash or two while washing it.
 

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Jeff, the TYT TH-8600 is what SXS Radio sells. It comes preprogrammed for GMRS frequencies with an antenna and cable. However I don't think the antenna that's packaged is tuned for VHF ??? Not sure
Have you used the audio Interrupter with the SXSRadio system? i have been looking into it because I don't always hear mine even with an external speaker
 

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The TH8600 works great for me. I bought one on Amazon and then had SXSRadio add the jumper for hooking to my Rugged intercom. Programming is not tough with the TH8600 but unfortunately it is not supported with Chirp so you either have to use the crappy software that comes with it or purchase RT Systems. One thing I would recommend is make sure you get the proper antenna. Depending on the roof you have on your SXS you'll want either a no ground plane dual band model or a ground plane dual band model. Whichever you choose, make sure you get one that covers the full UHF and VHF bands of the radio you select.
 

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The TH8600 works great for me. I bought one on Amazon and then had SXSRadio add the jumper for hooking to my Rugged intercom. Programming is not tough with the TH8600 but unfortunately it is not supported with Chirp so you either have to use the crappy software that comes with it or purchase RT Systems. One thing I would recommend is make sure you get the proper antenna. Depending on the roof you have on your SXS you'll want either a no ground plane dual band model or a ground plane dual band model. Whichever you choose, make sure you get one that covers the full UHF and VHF bands of the radio you select.

All good points and good information. This is exactly why I recommend SXS Radios ....IE customer support
 

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The TH8600 works great for me. I bought one on Amazon and then had SXSRadio add the jumper for hooking to my Rugged intercom. Programming is not tough with the TH8600 but unfortunately it is not supported with Chirp so you either have to use the crappy software that comes with it or purchase RT Systems. One thing I would recommend is make sure you get the proper antenna. Depending on the roof you have on your SXS you'll want either a no ground plane dual band model or a ground plane dual band model. Whichever you choose, make sure you get one that covers the full UHF and VHF bands of the radio you select.
How much did it cost to install the jumper?

I actually like the software the radio comes with and I think it’s easier to use than CHIRP.
 
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