How to Program a BaoFeng Radio
For people who’re about to enter the world of radio communication, Ham radios are best ones to go for. And as long as ham radios are concerned, Baofeng is one of the leading brands in the market.
The radios series from the brand and modules that are from these series are full of highly user-focused features. But until or unless you don't know how to program it on your own, you can't extract the best out of it.
So, let’s not be a dumb radio user with no sense of programming it in our way. Just a few simple steps and a bit of understanding of radio-based technical terms- that’s all you need over here.
The user's manual that comes with each brand is a basic guide to go. But if you're new to this stuff, you need a simpler, more detailed and easier-to-follow guide to programming a Baofeng radio.
And fortunately, that’s what we’re going to help you with.
There are two ways to program a Baofeng Radio with computer software. One is through the radio, and another is through the computer. For you to understand better, we were going with the first one.
Point-by-point Guide to Programming A Baofeng Radio
For making it easier for you, we’ve divided the guide into a simple set of aspects. Hope that would make it comfortable for you-
Step 1: Fin the right Connecting Cable
Of course, you need to have a USB cable that connects the PC and the radio itself. But not just a random phone cable will do. Some of these radios are series specific. As an example, the Baofeng UV series radios will work best only with the Baofeng connecting cable that comes with it.
Pretending that you have got the default cable that comes with the radio itself, let’s move to step 2.
Step 2: Setup the Programming Software
CHIRP is the name of programming software that’s used in computers to program Baofeng radios. As there is variation in operating systems in computers, you have to find the version of CHIRP that suits your OS.
If you’re done with installing this software on the computer, connect the radio to the PC through the connecting cable. Use a USB 3.0 port for the best result. Turn the radio off.
Step 3: Starting the Programming
Go to CHIRP and find the Go to Radio option. From there, select Download from Radio. Now your radio device should start communicating with the computer.
Press the Menu button on the radio and reset it to its factory settings by pressing Button 40 that says Rest All. Then press the menu button to initiate the programming scheme. If the default language resets into Chinese, press Menu button and press 14 for accessing the language menu. Select English from there.
Finally, set your preferred frequency mode by pressing the Orange colored VFO/MR button.
Step 4: Setting the Stepping Frequency and the Tone of CTSS
On Menu, the Button 1 indicated the frequency settings. Press this button and use the up and down switching process to reach your preferred frequency settings. In case of most users, the frequency is preferred to be 10.0K.
Confirm the frequency setting by pressing the Menu over again.
Now it's time to set the CTSS tone. Press Menu and Press 13 button from there. In the same way, go back and forth to find your preferred CTSS settings. Press the Menu again to confirm the settings that you’ve just changed.
Step 5: Setting up the Memory Channel and Transmitting Frequency
Go to Menu and press 25 from the numbered buttons. Here you can toggle up and down to select the positive and negative offsets according to your preference. Later, go to 26 to set the offset at 00.600.
Now, you can use the button 27 to set the memory channel that you prefer.
Now, the last thing that you have to do is to set the transmitting frequency. Because a property of baofeng radios are- they don’t set the transmitting frequency after you manually adjust the memory channel.
Go to pressing the orange button and set up the frequency mode that you want to work with. Then get back to the memory channel over again by pressing Menu and then the button 27.
Now your favorite Baofeng radio is all set to go on air. Although according to models and series variation, the process can vary a bit. But the way this whole stuff work will be the same.
Before starting with the program, make sure you've read the entire manual once and understood the technical terms that come with it. If not, take help from an expert or a user’s community to become sure about it.