I’ve been having a lot of success using my MD380 DMR transceiver together with the Isle of Man’s DMR repeater network. Sadly though, my house isn’t in coverage of the repeaters. This means I can’t use my handheld at home.
The solution to this problem has come in the form of a Radio/IP gateway called the OpenSpot, and manufactured by SharkRF.
This allows my DMR radio to send packets to global DMR networks (Brandmeister, DMR+ etc.) and for incoming packets to be sent to my radio over RF. Essentially it’s like having my own DMR ‘repeater’ at home so that I can use my handheld radio on all of the global networks as if I was in coverage of a DMR repeater.
Configuration was easy, via an HTTP web interface. Once set up, all the control can be done from the radio. Linking and unlinking can be done by sending group calls to specific talkgroups which means there’s no need to keep using a computer to use the device. All you need is your handheld radio.
I’ve been impressed with the build quality, the support forums, and the constant releases of new firmware with new features. I haven’t tried it yet, but it should be possible to use my OpenSpot to also communicate on the non-DMR D-STAR and System Fusion networks too, even though I only have a DMR radio. You can’t even do that with a full on DMR repeater!