Alinco DJ-SR1

Alinco
DJ-SR1

by
Permian

Stock
Specifications
RRP 129.99
UKP
Specs

Range
of 3Km (Terrain dependent)
8 Frequencies, with 38 (39) Tone Codes on each Frequency
Call Monitoring
Scanning
Call Alarm
Transmit Alarm
Frequency Memory (19 combinations)
LCD Lamp
Power Management (Timed Power off & Low Power transmit
mode)
External Power Supply (Desktop Charger)


About
12 months into owning my Motorola
TA-200’s
I was becoming increasingly frustrated with trying
to find accessories that would fit the obscure Motorola plug
dimensions. Also the Motorola’s had a couple of minor niggles
– the build quality was not as good as it should have been,
and the volume knob on the side of the radios meant that in
certain situations the knob could be knocked hence raising or
lowering the volume.

So
on the recommendation of Jay at CS I bought myself an Alinco
DJ-SR1 radio, for £129.99 from Nevada Radios in Portsmouth
– almost as much as the 2 Motorola Radios. Was it worth it?
Well there is little information about the Alinco DJ-SR1 on
the internet so this review will appraise the quality of the
radio over the 2 years I have had it.

Initial
Impressions
Compared to the Motorola’s the Alinco feels
a lot more solid and well built, it feels as though all the
space in the case has been used, whereas the Motorola usually
sounded quite hollow. The Alinco is jet black, more professional
looking than the Motorola’s trendy blue and yellow. Professional
is the word that best describes the Alinco radio. Alinco, as
far as I am aware are a big name in professional radios – both
their CBs and VHF/UHF systems are well know and well specified.
This carries over to the PMR446 radio, as the DJ-SR1 has a lot
more features than the Motorola’s.

The
Specifications include:

Range
of 3Km (Terrain dependent)
8 Frequencies, with 38 (39) Tone Codes on each Frequency
Call Monitoring
Scanning
Call Alarm
Transmit Alarm
Frequency Memory (19 combinations)
LCD Lamp
Power Management (Timed Power off & Low Power transmit mode)
External Power Supply (Desktop Charger)

Build
& Form
The
DJ-SR1 is actually smaller in footprint that the Motorola TA-200’s.
It is 100mm x 55mm x 26mm. It is fatter than the Motorola, making
better use of the available space. The Headphone, microphone
and DC Jacks and the volume/squelch knob are mounted on the
top of the unit. The left side of the unit house the PTT, Monitor
and Function buttons mounted behind a silicone cover – aiding
the units’ water resistance. The LCD display and the majority
of the function adjustment buttons are mounted on the front
of the unit as is the speaker.

The
Battery compartment and aerial are housed on the back of the
unit. The aerial is not fixed vertically; it rotates on a fixed
point on the back of the unit. The battery compartment located
below the aerial houses 3 AA batteries and is sealed care of
a rubber O-ring.

On
the base of the unit there are 2 electrical contacts that allude
to the fact that there is a drop in Desktop Charger available
for it.

The
unit is very solid with none of the hollowness that was evident
on the TA-200’s. The headphone and microphone ports are at a
Standard spacing, hence obtaining accessories for the radio
has not been a problem.

Operation
When using the radio in the field I house it in the same
US ALICE Compass/FFD pouch that housed the Motorola’s. The bonus
here is that with the microphone and headphone ports and volume
control located on the top of the unit means that once the flap
has been secured nothing can be tampered with.

For
woodland combat I use a Motorola boom mike with an external
PTT. Its very high quality, and set me back (£70). Ironically
the Motorola boom mike came with universal plugs (they were
free form – not fixed in place), and hence can be used on any
radio – probably devised before they got greedy. I used to use
a Maplin’s own brand throat mike for CQB – but it was really
quite useless and has been confined to the bin.

I
chose to operate the radio with the key lock on – to prevent
any accidental frequency changed, and with the transmit alarm
activated (beeps at the end of every transmission I make – confirms
the radio is operating and all the plugs are in). My biggest
gripe with the SR1 is the unique code classification Alinco
use for it. This means that if I wanted to select frequency
4 and Tone code 12 I would have to set the radio to 4 – A03.
This means that I have to carry around the manual with the code
translation in my tact vest.

I
have used the SR1 at Combat
South
since I have owned it, and have found transmission
and reception quality to be excellent. I have regularly transmitted
to team mates from the safe zone to the speedball field – a
distance of over 800 meters, up hill. Battery life is good,
I have to change them every 6 skirmishes or so. This roughly
translates into 54 hours of usage.

Conclusion
My Alinco DJ-SR1 radio has been through a lot, upwards of
20 skirmishes in the hot, dry, cold and wet. I have waded through
rivers with this radio on my waist, and have been soaked in
the driving rain. Through all this the Alinco has kept on working,
allowing me to communicate with my team mates and listen to
Karlos’ mindless radio banter. Expensive yes, but well worth
– I would add though that there are cheaper radios out there
that do the job as well, just with fewer functions.
UPDATE:

Since
releasing the DJ-SR1 at the end of 1999 Alinco have released
2 other PMR446 radios, the DJ-446 and the DJ-446S. Both of these
radios are aimed at the Professional end of the PMR446 market,
they are better specified and more expensive. I am looking at
getting the DJ-446 as my next logical purchase as in addition
to being better specified it has normal tone codes, not the
SR’s odd alphabetical classification.

by
Permian

External
Links:
Alinco

Site
links:
Motorola
TA-200 review

Comment
on this review in the forums


Last
modified:
Sunday, March 9, 2003 7:00 PM
Copyright 2003 ArniesAirsoft




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