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Old 26 April 2010, 03:09   #1
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Lowrance handheld with DSC

This product had completely passed me by until now, the LHR-80K seems to offer a large amount of function in a small package.

VHF with built in GPS, that got my attention. Then I saw that is also has full DSC function, including the ability to poll the position of other DSC users.

Then the other half says "Oooo, that means you can use it as a personal distress beacon too." Nice.

Has anyone used one? How did I miss them??
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Old 26 April 2010, 03:15   #2
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How did I miss them??
Because (unless there has been a recent change) they are not EC type approved and so either not on sale here, or available only with the DSC function disabled. Not sure if that affects you - as technically you are not in the EC?
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Old 26 April 2010, 03:29   #3
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Not sure if that affects you - as technically you are not in the EC?
A good point.

I have seen them listen on various UK chandlers' sites, so I suspect they may have been approved. They have them listed with the K which I think means they are the UK DSC enabled version.

Most intriguing is notion that you can fall in the water and set off a DSC alert which will be picked up not just by SAR craft but anyone nearby (including the skipper of the boat that you just fell of) with a DSC set. Then, unlike a PLB, you can maintain a two way contact with your rescuers.
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Old 26 April 2010, 04:11   #4
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Bother, it does look like the UK version has ATIS rather than DSC.

I wonder if the US version has the international channel set....
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Old 26 April 2010, 04:19   #5
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I have seen them listen on various UK chandlers' sites, so I suspect they may have been approved. They have them listed with the K which I think means they are the UK DSC enabled version.
I doubt it - based on a discussion here last year on the topic, and a thread I found on a sea kayak website, the problem is that the EC have no standard to approve a handheld DSC radio to. So its not that they don't conform or haven't been tested - its more fundamental - there is no way at present for them to be approved. And it seemed to involve the ITU and EC and various EC countries agreeing what the standard would be before anything would happen (whereas I think the US just made up their own rules!) - given the number of committees that seems to need I think its unlikely in my lifetime!
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Old 26 April 2010, 04:43   #6
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So its not that they don't conform or haven't been tested - its more fundamental - there is no way at present for them to be approved.
If that is the case can they not bundle it with a 12v power lead and speaker/mic then call it a fixed DSC set with internal backup battery?!
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Old 28 April 2010, 15:07   #7
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I may be wrong but I'm 99.9% sure there was an option to select a DSC enabled handheld when I took out my latest Ships Radio License.

Isn't that a bit odd if there is no way to get a legal one?

This looks like a really useful back up and I would be very interested in one.

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Old 28 April 2010, 15:18   #8
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Even more interesting see the article in the Radio Communications Agency's Air Waves publication here

http://www.ofcom.org.uk/static/archi...4/airwave4.htm

So they have changed the license, the MCA are encouraging their use, they stress the use of a seperate MMSI - but they are not type approved............And all from 2001!

Am I getting the gist wrong or is there some encouragement to use these anyway????



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