GME UHF Radio Equipment
Australia is one of the very few places in the world where Citizen Band radio operates on UHF. Most countries still rely on the original 27 MHz band that first debuted in the United States, but Australian CB radios have largely migrated to the higher bands. GME UHF radios can provide local communications for both personal and business use. Whether you prefer a handheld radio or a larger unit you can always find something for your communications needs from GME.
What is UHF CB?
UHF CB in Australia operates on the 477 MHz band, which gives it a number of unique characteristics to set it apart. It not only uses different frequencies, but also takes advantage of an entirely different signalling mode. Consider the following when choosing a UHF CB:
- Line of Sight: Higher frequencies have less building penetration than lower frequencies, so UHF systems are often limited to line of sight communications.
- Modulation: UHF CB uses frequency modulation rather than the more common amplitude modulation found in other radios. This means UHF GME radio will provide clearer voice communications than lower frequencies. It's also less subject to power line hum.
- Repeaters: Many UHF transmissions get around the range issue by using repeater stations to extend transmission distances up to 100 kilometres.
- Channel Allocation: Australian 27 MHz CB radios have access to 40 channels and that is not likely to change. UHF radios have access to an 80-channel band, allowing for more conversations in a given area.
Using GME UHF CB in Australia
The government provided for 40 CB channels in the UHF bands until 2011, when the new 80-channel allocation came into effect. The new regulation split existing channels in two, dropping from 25 MHz per channel to 12.5 MHz. The original plan was to sunset all existing 40-channel sets within five years but the government reconsidered and reversed the ban so older 40-channel GME units are still usable. Do be aware that not all channels are usable for all purposes. Channels 5 and 35 are for emergency use only, and channels 22 and 23 are for non-packet data signals only. Some channels, 61-63, have also been restricted for further expansion. Repeaters have their own channels as well. In general, you call on channel 11 and then shift to another channel for conversation. Channel 18 is normally for caravans and other vehicles travelling together in convoy.
Choosing a GME CB
There are several different choices you can make when looking for a GME UHF CB. Handheld units are the simplest, as there is no need to get a separate GME antenna. However, a GME aerial can give your base station better range and performance than a smaller handheld unit, especially when it comes to reception.