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Thread: What to look for-online auctions

  1. #1
    FMulder13 No Longer Registered

    Default What to look for-online auctions

    Hello All,

    If I'm looking for radios for purchase through an online auction, what sort of things should I be looking for to assure a reliable, working radio, and/or what things raise red flags?


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    Quote Originally Posted by FMulder13 View Post
    If I'm looking for radios for purchase through an online auction, what sort of things should I be looking for to assure a reliable, working radio, and/or what things raise red flags?
    First, shop the seller. Lots of sales and 100% feedback is a great sign. Look at his individual feedbacks. Are lots of them radios? Someone who consistently sells radios and maintains a good feedback rating should instill some confidence.

    Even a negative feedback is not necessarily a deal breaker. Read them over carefully and make your own conclusion. Not all buyers know what they are doing, and way too many of them will hand out negative feedback that is totally undeserved.

    I only buy radio gear from US sellers. You can get whacked with unexpected shipping and customs charges dealing with overseas sellers.

    I usually contact the seller and verify that the radio is in working condition and that the codeplug is not password protected. If the codeplug is password protected, I make sure the seller understands that the correct password is to be furnished with the radio. I also insist on having the model number and serial number before I'll bid.

    Be sure you understand what is included and not included with the radio. Mics, power cables, mounting brackets and more clearly have a bearing on the value of the deal.

    I won't buy a radio that I can not program myself. A lot of buyers don't consider the cost of programming or the programming software and cables. A $150 radio isn't much of a bargain if you've got to spend another $300 just to be able to program it.

    If the seller specifies that the radio is used, new, or new other, it is supposed to be in good working order. Ebay has a field in the Item Specifics section for this and there are conditions and requirements for an item to be listed as used, new, or new other. If the seller doesn't fill in that field and hedges on how well the radio works, it's probably a dud.

    Radio sales posted from cell phones with minimal descriptions, very few (if any) photos should throw up a red flag for you. Anybody who wants to sell a radio in a legit fashion will take the time to adequately describe it and furnish enough photos for you to make a good buying decision.

    (Knock on wood!) I've never had a sour deal on a radio. That's probably because I have enough buying experience to spot the bad auctions easily.

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    Just make sure you read these forums on P25.ca and just do your homework and take your time. Don't be in a rush just because you want a radio and want it now. Any decent radio is going to cost you some cash. Make sure you understand what you are getting. Some of the older model radios have had some modifications. Just make sure you google the model number and make sure it has tags for the radio. I have had some bad luck with a couple radios in my past past time but I was so new to the industry. Sometimes you just have to live and learn. Stay away from international sales from people for sure. If you are going to buy a radio stay with somewhat of a newer model. I would say stay with an XTS model and up if you have some cash to spend for a nice radio. There items up for sale on this site too. Good Luck. Some of us read all of the sites for radios all the time. Lets us know which model you are looking for????
    Remember to not take life so seriously. Nobody ever gets out alive....

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    Make sure you know what the host/dsp & flashcode is. This helps to know what the radio capabilities are.GARY

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    My advice, stay away from APX radios unless YOU KNOW the seller, especially on eBay. Many of the ones on there are bitch parts radios hacked together, and unfortunately unless you know the seller or have verifiable documentation, it's truly a crap shoot. I would NEVER buy anything from overseas for serious money, most the scrap radios seem to end up there.
    What others have said is good advice, but as I always say, buy the SELLER not the item, especially when serious money or serious product is the expectation. With modern digital radios, it is good to know:

    The history of the unit, the flashcode (these are the current software feature sets enabled in the radio) it's HOST version (the radio operating system) and DSP (the radio's DSP software version), if it is original or "seller refurbished"...I say this because a worn out beat up abused radio with a new housing is not the same as a radio that went to the Motorola factory depot and got new boards and assemblies. It seems everyone these days is a self-proclaimed "expert" in refurbishing used radios. Some of these guys are pretty good, but I've also seen some ridiculous hackjobs. One can seriously damage one of these radios using improper tools and techniques by prying them apart with a screwdriver, not adhering to static discharge procedure, or missing critical steps outlined in service manuals.

    It is also helpful to know what the last version of CPS the radio was last written with, to determine if you can program it with your current version, or if you need an updated version.

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    Definitely "buy the seller" when it comes to Astro radios.

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    Sometimes older is better. Unless you really really need to be toting around the latest and greatest, with few exceptions an Astro Saber or Spectra will do just about anything you want it to and is just as durable. The upside is parts and accessories will be oftentimes way cheaper, perhaps even free.
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