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Uniden 980SSB Review

Discussion in 'CB and Export Equipment and Accessories' started by Happy_Hamer, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. Happy_Hamer

    Happy_Hamer Administrator
    Staff Member

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    Well I have owned this radio over a month.

    I installed it in my Volvo Semi truck right out of the box.

    From day one I had great reports and was able to communicate with other drivers with no problems at all.

    I got on channel 38 LSB and made all kinds of contacts and had no issues with the radio being off frequency.

    I was a little concerned about the fine and coarse clarifier because of issues with other manufacturers radios, not the case here. It tuned other radios in just fine with no issues.

    Making adjustments on screen colors and mic gain and other settings was a breeze and easy to do with a simple read of the manual.

    The display was hard to view in the bright sun light not matter what color display was set. The glossy screen I think is the culprit for the hard to view display during the day time. Night time was no problems.

    I ran a Cobra power mic using the 6 pin to 4 pin mic adapter and did not gain any better or worse reports. Now I did try to contact Uniden for the mic pinout so I can use a Ranger 6 Pin Echo Mic on the 980 and it was unsuccessful, I received the auto email from Uniden that they received my support request, just never got an answer. :sad:



    I have read many who have complained about the beep every time you change channels or make changes. To me, this is a non issue because I am not changing the radio settings often nor am I changing the channel that often.

    I run the stock Volvo dual antennas and receive the weather channels perfectly. I cross from Chicago along I-80 to Davenport, IA and back every day and pick up many of the weather channels along the route.

    I took the radio home over the weekend and hooked it up to a Dosy watt meter. It also has the built in Frequency Counter.

    The power output was exactly as advertised and modulation was at 90%. No reason for me to adjust anything. Frequency was dead on.

    Overall, the radio is a good option if you want a SSB in your vehicle. Great performance right out of the box. Just needs a little help on the display for day time operation.

    Do not expect much support from Uniden though as I have had no luck contacting them. :sad:
     

  2. Turbo T

    Turbo T Certified CB Rambo

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    I've heard the modulation is not very loud, but rather mediocre....any truth to it?

    Otherwise it looks like it could almost pass for a great "all in one" radio, seeing that it has AM, SSB, weather, freq indicator, color changing backlighting, etc....all in one box.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Onthecoast

    Onthecoast W9WDX Amateur Radio Club Member

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    Ive had good reports on mine. And when conditions were right have made some dx contacts on the stock 12w SSB. I also use an astatic 636 with the adapter.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. Happy_Hamer

    Happy_Hamer Administrator
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    Well I finally got an email from Uniden when I asked for the mic pinout of the Uniden 980 SSB

    Our Solution:
    Thank you for using our system.
    Unfortunately this information is not available as we do not recommend using aftermarket items



    Thanks

    Sincerely,


    WOW, JUST WOW

    Page E9 of the manual states the following

    Your Bearcat 980 SSB comes with an adapter to connect the radio’s 6-pin microphone jack to an aftermarket 4-pin microphone.

    My recommendation is not to buy Uniden products if they cannot even support their customers needs
     
  5. UPMan

    UPMan Member

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    Below (this is from the mic's POV).
     

    Attached Files:

  6. Staybolt

    Staybolt Well-Known Member

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    Junk...... Look for an older radio as they are MUCH better in performance....
     
  7. axplayer

    axplayer Member

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    True that! Or so I thought. I purchased an Uniden Grant LT thinking the same thing. But as often the case, the radio has been modded and needs a complete tune up. Now I'm thinking about that it's best to buy a brand new radio such as the 980. It is very hard to find "older" radios that have not been tampered with. And if your lucky enough to find one. expect to cut off your arm or leg to pay for it and even then, it's still a crap shoot. Now it's really a toss between the galaxy 959 or the Uniden 980. Of the two, I prefer the 980 but the annoying beep is making me hesitant. I've read that a new version of the 980 (beep can be disabled) is suppose to out. However, to date, I've not found any anywhere. Anyone who knows anything about the new version 980....please fill us in.

    My advise for those who are new or returning to the hobby....purchase a new radio. If you are handy with a screwdriver and consider yourself a CB guru than auction sites is where it's at.

    339
     
  8. RatsoW8

    RatsoW8 Supporting Member, W9WDX ARC Member - WD8T

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    I bough a new 980 for a road trip about 6 months ago, Used it once and boxed it back up. Took it back out to use in the last forum contest and no TX on AM or SSB. Google shows a few postings about new 980's going dead on TX for no reason but nothing about the fix. Wonder if it's just cheap Chinese transistors going belly up too soon.
     
  9. codeman

    codeman Recovering Crackerhead

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    I have had my 980 for over two years now. It took me a while to get use to the menu on the radio. I got good reports with the radio using the bearcat mike. But I get GREAT reports using a RF Limited Extreme 2018. I recorded myself and it does sound good. My 636 sounds clean but the 2018 gave it more punch.

    I had Clay's set my radio up. He took care of that BEEP. I get unsolicited flowers quite often. With a RM Italy 203 I make some good dx contacts when conditions are good. Even barefoot I was making some good dx contacts.

    My complaints with the radio are the screen is easily scratched and no extra channels. Overall for the money it is a good radio. I have had it bouncing around in my semi, my pickup and have used it at home on a dipole antenna with absolutley no problems.
     
    #9 codeman, Jul 30, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2015
  10. 222DBFL

    222DBFL Sr. Member

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    I beleive the beep function is already in the radios now being sold. And if not it's very easy to remove yourself. Many YouTube vids that show the mod. I did it. Took about 30 sec. Now no more loud beep. It's barely noticeable now. And yes the transistor in them are weak. I beleive they are rated at 10 watts. So even the 12 watt SSB puts a strain on it if you have a long conversation. My remeber was to turn power back to about 8 watts SSB. Am I set dk to 2 watts and get about 5-6 watts pep with the modulation all the way up. I also use the 2018 extreme mic or an older stock uniden mic, the silver face one with the red bear claw on front. Those work well with the 980 and gets clean, clear audio reports. The 2018 is a good mic as well, just gotta watch gain. Like I said, the back of the radio will get hot with a decent rag chew. Either add a heat sink or fan or lower the power and set modulation to about 90%. It won't go much past that anyway. Uniden locked this radio down as far as power goes. I'm sure it could be beefed up but why spend a bunch on it. If that is gonna be the case get an optima mk3. JMHO.
     
  11. The War Wagon

    The War Wagon Active Member

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    I've had mine in my DD Jeep for 2 years now, with no issue. With a little RM203 and a 4' Wilson silver load, I was able to talk from Buffalo to west TX on a sunny afternoon in October last year!

    Don't get to talk on it often or play with the SSB, so that's the best I've done so far. I'm looking at a better amp though, and maybe playing with it a little more. :cool:
     
  12. 222DBFL

    222DBFL Sr. Member

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    Leave the amp and get a taller antenna The War Wagon. If you think that 4' antenna is getting out, get a taller antenna like a sirio 5000 and see the difference before getting a bigger amp. JMO.
     
    jadocs likes this.
  13. jadocs

    jadocs Member

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    You might want to rotate the mic gain knob back and forth, and see if that fixes your modulation issues. The President Lincoln II's have this same issue, but it happens randomly.
     
    AL567 likes this.
  14. The War Wagon

    The War Wagon Active Member

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    For my twice a year interstate drive (the whole reason I was in Buffalo!), the Wilson will do me. For my short hops around the city, I mostly use the radio for the weatherband. I visit a LOTTA hospitals in my work, and I forgot it was up there once, upon entering a parking garage. ONCE. :(

    I'd hate to tear up a GOOD antenna by accident.

    I run the 102" whip on the avatar. :cool:
     
  15. 222DBFL

    222DBFL Sr. Member

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    The sirio folds down at least. But if you are happy run it!! The 980 is a good little radio for the money. Stays on freq and come out of box on freq. Not the powerhouse one might want but for what you pay its well worth it.
     

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