Today we are going to be taking a look at a very nice priced IP67 Analog Dual Band radio from Alinco which is the model DJ-VX50T. This radio is designed for the backpacker or adventurer that requires a bit more ruggedness for their radio while they are in the country side. While there are a number of IP rated radios such as the Yaesu VX-6R however that radio costs over 2.5 times what the DJ-VX50T offers and the feature set does not differ as much as you would think!!! Before we jump in lets take a look at the features of this radio.
Alinco DJ-VX50T Features:
- 3 Color-selectable display and keypad
- Semi-Duplex Dualband,V/V-U/U, FM broadcast, VHF AM aircraft and NOAA Weather Channel receiver
- 200 memory channels, any mix of VHF/UHF
- Internal VOX
- Alphanumeric channel labels
- Direct frequency input from keypad
- Auto-repeater shift setting
- Variety of scanning modes
- Wide and narrow FM TX/RX
- High power Li-Ion battery pack, stand charger and beltclip included
- 1800mAh Li-ion battery
- IP67 Rated (Dust and Water Protection)
- FCC Certified
So as you can see for under $100 (at the time of this writing) you get an ultraportable, rugged and reliable Dual Band Radio for your adventures. So we know the ruggedness is there but what about the operational features? Well the DJ-VX50T is a Dual Band radio but that is really for the transmit side which for transmit you have:
- FM: 144-148MHz (VHF)
- FM: 420-450MHz (UHF)
However; when it comes to the receive frequencies you have a large selection to monitor for information and SHTF. For the receive frequencies you have:
- FM: 136-174MHz (VHF)
- FH: 400-470MHz (UHF)
- WFM: 76-107.95MHz (Music Radio)
- AM: 118-135.995MHz (AM Aircraft Band)
- FM: 162.400-162.550 (VHF Weather Band)
So you see you have a really large range for monitoring while being able to fully transmit on UHF/VHF amateur radio bands with u to 5 watts of power. Wile we are on the subject of power the Alinco is rated for up to 5 watts for VHF and up to 4 watts for UHF. So how does that really compare to real life output, I put the Alinco DJ-VX50T on my Strenghtometer to find out the actual output and I was pleasantly surprised with just at the rated maximum with a full battery charge:
Wow I would expect that performance from a top tier radio from Yaesu, ICOM, etc. but again think this is a sub $100 radio with great RF output, IP67 ruggedness, wide receive and more. I can say at first when I received the radio I was apprehensive as the screen and the UI are very simple which is a plus but when your a geek like me its too simple, but then I stepped back and told myself wait, this is an IP67 rated radio for under $100, for the price the features that it does offer are top notch and really all you need from a radio you do not need all the frills for something that may one day save your life.
A few other words, the programming software is very expensive but this radio is one of the simplest to program from the front panel, about as simple as Yaesu does on the FT-4XR and FT-65R. Just read the manual and you will be off in minutes. A link to the manual is below. Also accessories as a whole are expensive and rare but I did find that the ICOM HM-186LS speaker microphone has the same plug style and works perfectly. One thing to note which was a big disappointment for me was that once you remove that cover to use a speaker mic you loose the IP67 rating making it IP54 at best.
So now let’s talk some pros and cons of what I like and what I did not like about this radio. Some of these are just opinion and some are functionality related which could sway your decision based on your needs after reading this review.
- IP67 waterproof (1 meter for 30 minutes)
- Wideband Receive including FM/AM/WFM
- Very easy to program from the front panel
- Auto repeater shift (I like it but some do not)
- Stable 5 watts on VHF and 4 watts on UHF
- Very loud speaker for outdoor use
- 3 color Display for your preference.
- Uses ICOM speaker microphone
- To use an accessory such as a speaker mic you loose IP67
- Limited accessories and they are costly
- Very expensive programming cable (Get RT Systems if you do)
Alinco DJ-VX50T Manual: https://manualzz.com/doc/55075669/alinco-dj-vx10-vx50-instruction-manual
Alinco DJ-VX50T Brochure: http://www.alinco.com/Products/ham/ht/DJ-VX50/DJ-VX50H.pdf