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Thread: Installation of a UHF Radio

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2021
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    3

    Installation of a UHF Radio

    Hi All,

    I have a new Land Rover Defender 2021. I plan to install a UHF radio for my trip around Australia. Has anyone installed a UHF radio in a new Land Rover? Is it straight forward? Where is the best place to position the aerial on the vehicle?
    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    Brisbane
    Posts
    331
    Quote Originally Posted by Lambys View Post
    Has anyone installed a UHF radio in a new Land Rover?
    Yep!

    Is it straight forward?
    Nope!

    Where is the best place to position the aerial on the vehicle?
    That depends. If you have the LR bull bar, then grab a Stedi light mount and you can *just* fit the antenna inboard of the left headlight, a few mm clear of the front-most corner of the bonnet as it opens. The only other options I've seen are a custom-made mount that went on the rear corner of the bonnet near the windscreen, or up on a roof rack.

    For the UHF unit itself there's apparently a decent void buried two layers down behind the central button panel, and you can route the antenna coax via the existing cable tunnel through the firewall into the engine bay. The handset socket can be installed on the rear-facing panel below the 12V outlet that sits under the button panel. It's very tidy.

    My mate in Melbourne was the pioneer here with a GME 330 installed by an ARB and he reports great success. I bought an Oricom online and got a local ARB to replicate the same install... and it's not turned out well. If the car's electric systems are active (dash on, Pivi on etc) then there's a huge amount of noise picked up by the Oricom and cutting over the top of every transmission it receives, even with the squelch turned way up. Press the Start/stop button to kill the electrics and it all comes clear. (Got the radio wired with permanent 12V so it doesn't turn off with the dash I'd recommend you don't rely on the "accessory" power because the damn modern vehicle kills that a few minutes after you turn the engine off. Both the units mentioned here have an auto-off timer so they'll avoid draining the starter battery if we forget to switch the radio off after stopping.)

    ARB reckons it's just poor quality on the Oricom side of things. They're going to swap a GME into the same spot using the same power and antenna and see if it fares better. If it does, I'm paying for all the repeat labour as well as another radio. But honestly that's probably the best outcome I can hope for.
    2020 Defender First Edition D240 with rear e-diff
    Tuff Ant alloys with Maxxis RAZR MT 275/65R18
    LR bull bar and Warn Zeon 10-S Platinum winch, front undershield

    2010 Discovery 4 3.0 TDV6 SE - 2017-NOW4SALE
    MY16 Discovery Sport SE SD4 (2.2) - 2015-2020

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