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Thread: Thales Liberty All-band - worth it?

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    Default Thales Liberty All-band - worth it?

    Thinking about picking up a used Thales Liberty all-band unit. Worth it? pros? cons?
    I don't care about trunking, but like that it's all-and, FPP, and P25. This would be more of a desk radio/scanner and not used too much in the field.


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    While perhaps revolutionary for its time, I have not heard all that much positive about the radio. If you are a collector (and I believe you are ) might as well add it to the collection.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wiredwrx View Post
    While perhaps revolutionary for its time, I have not heard all that much positive about the radio. If you are a collector (and I believe you are ) might as well add it to the collection.
    I'm trying NOT to be a collector! That's he problem (addiction?)
    I just have an old Uniden scanner that's crapping out and a couple other UHF and VHF radios on the desk for when I need to actually talk on the radio. if I can "condense" those into one, that would be ideal.
    I'm not looking for anything stellar... just something to reduce the desk clutter.

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    The Harris version or the APX8000 would be a better bet. The Thales Liberty has some issues. I would look for reviews of it before committing, although the prices are far more attactive than an XG or APX.
    Killing Public Safety Streaming, One County at a Time...

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    Quote Originally Posted by com501 View Post
    The Harris version or the APX8000 would be a better bet. The Thales Liberty has some issues. I would look for reviews of it before committing, although the prices are far more attactive than an XG or APX.
    That's exactly the reason why I'm considering it. The price is very attractive for these, lately. I studied up on the Tx Inhibit bug and I'm not too concerned with it as most channels I monitor via CSQ are Rx-only. For anything that I'd need to Tx while monitoring via CSQ, I'm assuming I can wait until the hang time time expires before I transmit (the scan hang time is configurable via the programming software, I presume?)

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    Are the programmable buttons capable of being edited via the FPP function on-radio? or do you need the CPS for that?
    (BTW, I really do appreciate the help from the members here on this decision).

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    Unfortunately you can't edit the button functions from the front panel, the software is required to do that.
    Here are a few pics of the FPP settings

    IMG_20190403_170505783.jpgIMG_20190403_170509906.jpgIMG_20190403_170513771.jpg

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    So few were ever really fielded, leaves parts and batteries to be the major issue. Better off with a Moto, Harris or EFJ multibander.

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    Thanks for the input everyone. I've made a purchase for a Liberty. I have 30 days to return it if it doesn't work out for me.

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    I have one, and it sits on the floor in the charger and never gets used. Can't stand the damn thing, but I won't get rid of it for nostalgia purposes.

    There is a reason that they shitcanned the product.

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    Quote Originally Posted by d119 View Post
    I have one, and it sits on the floor in the charger and never gets used. Can't stand the damn thing, but I won't get rid of it for nostalgia purposes.

    There is a reason that they shitcanned the product.
    It's good to know I have a 30-day return policy!

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    The radio can get quite warm because it is all metal, and randomly reboot from time to time (memory leak? watchdog?).

    Battery life on standby is also terrible, comparing mah to minutes to an XTS, APX, or even an XPR with wifi turned on.

    Receive audio is extremely good. On P25 Phase I, console tones are more clear than any other P25 radio ever made. So if you care about SUPER CLEAR console tones, this radio is for you. RX Voice quality is better than XTS, worse than APX.

    TX Audio is absolute trash.

    It is a joke to carry in terms of size and weight

    It is arguably the most durable LMR radio ever made, and hopefully that ever will be made. But calling it a "portable" is a bit inaccurate.

    Even Thales tried to market it mostly as a "cache radio".

    If you know Green Hills Software and .net development, you might even be able to teach it your own tricks.

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    Oh PSE, you reminded me of my attempts to use it during Alberta winters at -20C. I would have to remove the battery, give the chassis a diagonal twist, and reattach the battery, in the hopes that it would work for a while longer.

    I still have my Liberty somewhere and I think two batteries and maybe a charger. I bought one a few years before my province built out a 700 MHz P25 system - I used it for UHF and VHF conventional analog while I was waiting for the 700 system to be built out, and then Thales discontinued the damn thing before the governing body could test the radio for system acceptance. So it never got approved for my system and I haven't used it in years.

    Really upset when Thales gave up on it. Lesson learned the hard way (with a four-digit personal price tag).

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    The LCD backlight is also TFT/CCFL I believe, so that adds some heat and power draw

    The batteries also fail to properly recognize quite often, so it will show a big red X until you reboot the radio and try again.

    TX audio may be better with the Otto mic. The internal is unusable.

    Keep in mind with latest firmware you need the Wideband feature enabled to use wideband.

    Probably the best things are the nice GUI/FPP/scan list flexibility and the nice flexible all band antenna, and that its made in USA.

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    Radio arrived today. I'm starting to play around with it and set it up. Right off the bat, does anyone know what the default FPP password is?
    I've messaged the seller, but awaiting for a response....figured it might be quicker here to get an answer.

    Initial impression, this radio is big...thick, bulky, heavy, but that's OK... it might be a good replacement for my desktop scanner and UHF and VHF radios.

    I still have 29 days to return it... so if this doesn't work out, I'll get all my money back less return shipping. Which I'm OK with.

    The menus seem straight forward, but I can't "edit" any frequencies without the password.

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    Figured out the default password = 000000

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    OK guys... been dicking around with this radio for a couple hours now. It's clunky. It gets HOT when using. Also, the battery charging is very finicky. It starts to charge, then gets to the point where it's about 50%, then reports "Charging error" (green/red flashing light). I just don't have the time for this and I'm glad I had a 30-day return policy. Back it goes. Thanks for the input from everyone.

    This radio might have been cutting edge 10 years ago when new, but now, it's just another doorstop, IMHO. Such a shame as an all-bad radio is golden these days in the age of interoperability, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sjxts3000 View Post
    OK guys... been dicking around with this radio for a couple hours now. It's clunky. It gets HOT when using. Also, the battery charging is very finicky. It starts to charge, then gets to the point where it's about 50%, then reports "Charging error" (green/red flashing light). I just don't have the time for this and I'm glad I had a 30-day return policy. Back it goes. Thanks for the input from everyone.

    This radio might have been cutting edge 10 years ago when new, but now, it's just another doorstop, IMHO. Such a shame as an all-bad radio is golden these days in the age of interoperability, etc.
    Interested to know what model of charger yours came with?

    Mine has a basic single unit charger and I've never seen the charging error with it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AD0JA View Post
    Interested to know what model of charger yours came with?

    Mine has a basic single unit charger and I've never seen the charging error with it.
    Basic Thales Liberty single-unit charger with a new old stock Thales OEM Liberty battery.

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    I have the "enhanced" charger with com port, and about 1/3rd of time you put in charger it does the flashy, but it ALWAYS settles down and starts charging eventually

    Seems the battery communication to both radio or charger is flaky.

    I have batteries from 2014-15 I think, different batches for sure.

    I would say biggest issue is actually TX audio quality
    I don't have an RSM to compare to, but Hirose kits even sound better

    Not sure who would use Hirose surveillance kits on this elephant of a radio

    I actually soldered up a bluetooth Sena SR10 Hirose to Hirose from Mouser and leave radio in back pack or desk.

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    If anyone has any batteries for the Liberty they'd like to part with, let me know.

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    Just saw your FS post. Did the guy refuse to take it back?

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    Quote Originally Posted by wiredwrx View Post
    Just saw your FS post. Did the guy refuse to take it back?
    No, but like I said..it's a long story.

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    Sucks man...hope things get resolved somehow.

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    For batteries and chargers, the first run used higher(?) voltage batteries than the rest. Not sure if that was preproduction or production radios. I have both models. I found that the later production radios worked just fine. I haven’t seen any of the issues (other than warm) as above with mine. I’ve used it on the foreground and work and as stated - prob the most rugged out there. They did the car wash test with these as well like the T25 video floating around.

    It’s still a little surprising that a company that makes so much mil stuff and other equipment to land a naval shell some where with a 1ft accuracy had to bow out of the market