PRC-152 Falcon III TRI Replica Radio

Brooke Clarke 2013

PRC-152 Replica Radio
Background
Specs
Photos
Problems
BaoFeng Radios
Related
Links

Background

The real PRC-152 Falcon III radios made by Harris are not available on the commerical market and the ones that are available are very expensive.  So there's a market for a replica Falcon III radio (NATO Base TRI) that looks like the PRC-152.

In a similar manner there's a very good replica of the Bowman Personal Role Radio PRC-343 IISR.  In this case the accessories are interchangeable with the real ones on a functional basis.

There are very low cost ( <$50) "baofeng dual-band" transceivers on eBay and this radio may be based on one of those.
The
The VX-7R Triband radio is much more capable.

Specs

Frequency Coverage FM only for Tx and Rx

  Band
MHz
Mode
FM
67.0 - 108 (135.995?)
Rx
VHF
136 - 174.995
Includes 2 meter ham band
Rx Tx
UHF 0
350 - 390.995
Rx
UHF 1
400 - 479.995
Includes 70 cm ham band
Rx Tx
UHF 2
480 - 520.995
Rx

The radio can be setup with frequency splits for repeaters and has CTCSS (Wiki) sub audible tones.

Photos

Fig 1 Box as received from eBay seller Nato Base nb211212
PRC-152
                  ReplicaTRI Radio
Fig 2
PRC-152
                  ReplicaTRI Radio
Fig 3 The Antenna connector is a standard TNC.
(Wiki) so a TNCm to BNCf adapter is handy for
use with an external antenna.
PRC-152
                  ReplicaTRI Radio
Fig 4
PRC-152
                  ReplicaTRI Radio
Fig 5
PRC-152 Replica
                  TRI Radio
Fig 6
PRC-152
                  ReplicaTRI Radio
Fig 7 TRI Replica battery on charger
         Real Harris battery for comparison.
The real battery will fit the TRI replica radio.
The TRI battery __TBD__ fit the PRC-6725 (PRC-139).
Red: Charging,     Green: Charged
BPRC-152
                  ReplicaTRI Radio


Problems

They went to some expense to use a U-299 type audio connector, but this replica can NOT use standard U-229 military audio accessories.  A special adapter cable is needed for that.  That's a huge mistake.  The radio needs a modification so that no adapter is needed.
This may be related to modern commercial radios using condenser microphones, not the dynamic mics used with NATO mil radios (i.e. with the U-229 type connectors).  If you know what's going on and the fix let me know what it is.
Partial answer:  Short pins A (ground) and E (not defined) either inside the radio or on the audio accessory.  See the U-229 Pinout page for what the pins do.

July 2014 - There is an upgrade kit that adds an audio amplifier capable of working with real military audio accessories.  The eBay listing by seller px_radio02  contains the words "DIY Amplify Parts for TRI PRC-152"   They also make a similar kit for the PRC-148 replica made by United Start


I can not get into the menu programming mode.

Rich emailed the solution:
...to get into "channel mode" you need to press the really small up button on the top side of the set (above the PTT) [see Fig 2 above] while the radio is off, and switch it on. You can then access and scan through ONLY your pre-defined channels. Repeating the boot process will put it back to normal mode.


BaoFeng Radios

Model
Band 1
Band 2
Band 3
UV3-R
136-174 MHz
400-470 MHz 87.0MHz-108.0 MHz
UV-5S
136-174 MHz 400-479.995 MHz 65.0MHz-108.0MHz
UV-5R
136.00-174.00 MHz 400.00- 480.00MHz na
UV-5RA
136-174 MHz 400-519.995 MHz 65-108 MHz
UV-B5
136-174 400-470MHz FM radio
UV-B6
136-174 MHz 400-470 MHz na
UV-82
136-174 MHZ 400-520MHZ 65-108 MHz

UV-5RA on order (the first one was out of stock and the "Etekcity" brand radio did not go to 520 Mhz, i.e. it was not the UV-5RA.
Hopefully a real UV-5RA is on order as of 4 Jan 2014.
Also one of the
Air Acoustic Earpiece Headsets to fit this radio. 
I expect to see a lot of similarity with the radio inside the PRC-152.

Related



Bowman Personal Role Radio PRC-343 IISR
PRC-6725 (PRC-139 without front panel)
PRC-68 Family of Military Hand Held Radios
U-229 Pin Out, Audio Accessories, Photos of Military Audio Accessories
VX-7R Triband Radio

Links

http://www.nlairsoft.com/en/forums/33-Reviews/4345-tri-an-prc-152-multiband-radio.html - has some helpful info

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Page created 31 July 2013.