What is DMR?

DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) is simply put, just a digital mode of a two way radio transmission.

Why use DMR vs other modes of digital radio?

DMR Tier II, which is what our repeater uses, allows us to have two (2) conversations (channels) on our repeater, in use, at the same time. Other digital modes do not allow more than one (1) conversation at a time on the repeater.

DMR, unlike other digital modes, is open-sourced. This allows us to use any brand and model of radio we wish to use on our repeater. This permits those on tight budgets to still have the ability to use digital radio technology and have the ability to talk around the world on the repeater. Other digital modes typically require the use of proprietary equipment that is of a specific brand of equipment, which can be costly to the users. This means that only their brand of equipment can be used on their brand of repeaters.

What are some of the disadvantages of using DMR compared to other digital modes?

DMR requires you to be on the specific talk group (channel) in order to hear what is being said. This means that if you do not have the talk group (channel) programmed into your radio, you will not hear the radio traffic. Other modes of digital typically don’t require the use of talk groups (channels) on a repeater. The frequency is your channel, with DMR you can have two (2) channels on a frequency at the same time.

How do I program a DMR radio?

DMR is relatively simple to program. You have to know only a few things such as frequency, color code, and talk group. You will start with the programming with the talk group. You need to add the talk group to your radio’s contact book as a group call. After that is done, you then program a channel in your radio with the frequency and color code like any other analog channel and be sure since it’s a digital DMR channel that under the TX area you add the contact from your contacts book. This contact that you want to transmit is your talk group that you added earlier.

What are contacts?

A contact can be one of two things. A contact can a group call which is the talk group or a private call which is a DMR id that can be programmed to resolve to a name or call sign for easy recognizing on a repeater.

What are talk groups?

A talk group is a number that represents a specific channel that is used on a DMR channel. These are programmed as group calls in your radio.

What is a color code?

A color code is similar in the way in the sense of PL tones from analog systems.