Thursday 30 May 2019



I recently got a new truck and decided to get a mobile radio for it. Because the truck is on a Lease/Purchase, I'm not too sure if I'll be able to install it semi-permanently or if I'll have to plug it in each time - I'll find out at the weekend I guess.

The radio I chose was the DualBand 2M/70cm Alinco DR-735E. It provides 50W on both bands and it is FULL DUPLEX, with a Cross-Band repeater function.


As you can see, the radio has a rather unique colour-screen. It can be configured to change colour depending on Mode, Frequency, Band, TX, RX or a host of other states. You can even configure it so that each Memory Bank is a different colour. So for example, you could have it turn green if it's scanning the Airband or purple for scanning Repeaters.  You can even have different colours on each side of the screen for VFO-A and VFO-B. There are ten colours in total.

What attracted me to this radio (apart from its pleasing looks and large screen) is the fact that the basic controls are incredibly simple and easy to use in a mobile situation.

Each side (each VFO) has its own volume knob, squelch and tuning dial. That's a real plus in an age where so many radios have squelches hidden in a menu!


Th new Alinco DR735E , fully featured 50w Dual Band 145/433MHz VHF/UHF mobile transceiver with remote head facility and new "Rainbow" colour display.
  • Full Duplex
  • Extended RX 108 - 174 MHz, 400 - 479 MHz
  • Large Display with "rainbow" of colour options
  • 1,000 Memories
  • Scan facility
  • Power 50/20/10/5w output
  • Computer programmable with free downloadable software
  • Internal duplexer allows single antenna socket for Dual Band antennas
  • Optional EDS-30 head separation kit
Easy repeater access - Features manual shift and offset-direction setting plus preset and programmable auto-repeater settings. Includes 4 tone-burst tones.
Versatile memory functions  Includes 1,000 memory channels in 10 banks,100 right-only/100 left-only memories, 100 dual memories, 5 pairs of programmed-scan channels, and 2 call channels.All memory channels can hold output setting, tones, LCD display color selections and more.Easy-to-Read Display
Large LCD Display screen offers adjustable display brightness, color and contrast along with 6-character alphanumeric tags, a brightness timer that boosts light levels temporarily when keys are engaged and a scan light feature that increases brightness for two seconds when scanning stops.
Convenient Receiver Functions Includes popular functions such as pager (icon and beep tones), extended  receive, aviation and utility monitoring on VHF and UHF frequencies, a variety of selectable channel steps, CTCSS/DCS capabilities for selective monitoring, a 10dB RX attenuator, sub-band mute, reception image rejection and auto-power-off.Advanced Transmitting Features  These features are part of the setmode menu that includes time-out-timer and busy channel lockout as well as an adjustable mid-power output level, microphone gain adjustment and cross-band repeat (T model only)*.
Selectable Scan Modes - Choose from a variety of scan modes that include VFO, memory, programmed or priority scans with busy and timed modes, CTCSS/DCS tone detection and memory scans with "skip" and "favorite" settings. (Utility software required for priority scan setting.)
Popular Features Other popular features include single-band mode, arestore function that recalls set-mode settings even after a complete reset, different reset modes (system, complete, VFO, memory and color resets),cable-cloning and utility software.
Full description The Alinco DR-735 features eight full colour LEDs enabling you to customize your display colours!  Using 10 standard colours plus 6 color memory channels in the set mode, the DR-735 lets you assign different colours for different functions.  For example, you can designate one colour to the right VFO and a different colour to the left VFO or add them to memory so you can see at a glance which memory bank you are using. 
It's your choice whether to use blue for VHF memories, pink for local repeaters, green for aviation channels or yellow for UHF channels.  And, you can set the status colours for TX/RX/Standby separately.  You can also select 2 animated multi-color displays.
This radio has fully independent keys and dials to deliver true dual-band operation.  The removable front panel can be remotely mounted or inverted for optimal speaker placement.
Full-duplex receiver enables simultaneous TX/RX within 144/440MHz bands as well as V/V and U/U receiver capability.  Fully independent frequency, audio level and squelch knobs for right and left VFOs make it seem more like operating two mono band radios rather than a dual band transceiver. Simply press the volume knob to select the VFO you wish to use for transmitting.
Cross-band repeater function available on all DR-735 radios. (Be sure to observe all regulations applicable to cross-band operation.)
Computer programmable with free software available for download at Set Mode menus are divided into basic and advanced, allowing you to assign less frequently used modes such as auto  power off or busy channel lockout to set and forget. That makes it easier to access the menus you use more often, such as scan mode and pager settings.
Large heatsink and quiet fan for stability while operating Wide and narrow ceramic Filters enable true narrow band operation Two speaker ports located on the back of the unit allow you to separate signals by both right and left sides or by internal or external speakers using audio from a single external source.

  • Frequency range TX: T VHF 144.00 - 147.995MHz / UHF 430.00 - 449.995MHzTX: E 144.00 - 145.995MHz / 430.00 - 439.995MHz RX:108.000-173.995MHz -400.000-479.995MHz
  • Modulation 16K0F3E(FM)/8K50F3E(Narrow FM)/F1E(digital voice)/F2D(1200bps)/A3E(RX only/AM)
  • Channel Steps 5.6.25, 8.33,10,12.5,15,20,25,30,50, 100,KHz
  • Memory channels Free-programmable 1000,ch / R+L 100 ch each / dual 100ch VHF CALL / UHF CALL 1ch each / 5 pairs program scan
  • Antenna impedance 50 ohm unbalanced
  • Freq.stability ±2.5ppm (TCXO-10+60)
  • Power Supply Requirement
  • 13.8V DC ±15% Negative ground
  • Current Drain (Approx.) 12A TX high / 0.6A RX max. / 0.4A RX squelched
  • Usable temperature range -10 to +60 (14F to 140F)
  • Dimensions (Approx.) 140mm(W) X 60mm(H) X 188mm(D) or 5.5 x 2.4 x 7.4 inches
  • Weight (Approx.) Approx. 1.3kg or 45.9oz
  • Output (Approx.) High 50W / Mid 20W / Low 5W
  • Modulation System Variable Reactance Frequency Modulation
  • Max.Frequency Deviation ±5KHz (FM) ±2.5KHz (NFM)
  • Spurious emissions Less than -60dB2k
  • (E) European version supplied with EMS-78 standard microphone
  • EMS-79 DTMF microphone available as an optional extra.

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The 2M/70cm antenna is the DIAMOND SG-7700 which is 5/8wave on VHF and 2x 5/8wave on UHF. It terminates with a PL-259 and can be folded flat. It boasts a gain of 4.3db on VHF and 6.8db on UHF so in theory, it should be quite effective.

As an aside, I also ordered something to make my outdoor HF work easier! I was thinking of one of those roll-on, roll-off devices that you buy to support your mast, but I heard that they can be a PIA on uneven ground (most outdoor places), so I opted for something else instead.

It's from M0MCX Callum's '"DX COMMANDER" site and it's basically a mast-support that attaches to your towball! The photos show it holding the mast up in the air, but I'll be letting the mast find its natural resting point on the ground and then tightening it up. Needless to say, this will be handy for using my 2M Yagi too.

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