Are you looking to connect your walkie talkies and struggling to pair them together? You are not alone! In this article, we will walk you through common obstacles and ways to connect your devices. With everyone talking about walkie talkies, you would think connecting them is as easy as pushing the Push To Talk button (PTT). It is simple, but not that simple; there are a few factors you need to understand that would simplify the process of pairing and connecting your radios.
The following are the things you need to get behind that would enable you to connect your radios from the same or different brands on the same frequency. This guide would see you sending and receiving messages on your trusty two-way radio in no time. ‘Over.’
Table of Contents
How does push to talk work?
First would be to understand how the PTT button on the radio works; the radio is essentially a receiver waiting to receive signals (messages) and only becomes a transmitter when the PTT button is pushed. This means it takes turns to be a receiver and a transmitter, never both at the same time. This is why you can not speak and be spoken to at the same time, hence the common tradition of speaking and ending your message with “over”, so the person at the other end can then talk.
Before you are ready to talk using the walkies, you must put the following in mind:
The Frequency Band/Channel
Before you push the PTT and expect your message to be heard on the other end, you must configure the two devices to be on the same channel or frequency band. And how do you get walkie talkies on the same channel? You can do this by picking out a channel from the available options and sharing that information to someone else with the other radio, where they can then scan the channel list and then tune in to the same frequency and effectively communicate. Most walkie talkies give you the ability to save channels, and this allows you to pair the radios and find each other faster next time.
When you are on the same frequency, all you need do is push the talk button. One question we get is ‘do all walkie talkies work together’, and the answer is Yes! Whether FRS or GMRS, there is always a way to get them to connect on the same channel.
If you do these and you are still having problems communicating, you would need to sync both radios.
How to sync two different walkie talkies
If you are still finding it hard to pair the radios, they are likely different models or of different brands. But not to worry, there is a way around it, and you would get both of them connected and working in no time. And you can do this by understanding Continuous Tone Code Squelching System (CTCSS) and Digital Coded Squelch (DCS), and how they work.
Continuous Tone Code Squelching System (CTCSS)
This is a form of in-band signalling, and it helps reduce interference when transmitting on your radios. With a limited number of channels, it is only a matter of time for different groups of people to `attempt to connect and communicate on the same channel; this then would cause interference for all parties as the transmissions would be heard by everyone tuned in. This is where CTCSS comes in, also known as tone squelch, and it does this by muting users with no CTCSS or a different CTCSS, and only unmutes when the signal being received carries identical sub-audible tone.
Digital Coded Squelch (DCS)
This is the newer version to the CTCSS, and instead of sending inaudible tones, sends a low-level digital signal. Like the CTCSS, it controls the unmuting of the receiver.
So if your radios are in the same range, on the same channel and you are still unable to communicate, it must be due to the DCS and CTCSS squelch features, turn them off, and you should be on your way.
Also, if you are trying to connect radios on different frequencies, GMRS and FRS, it is good to keep in mind that the channel configurations are different. You might be of the impression that you are tuned in to the same channel on the radios where channel 1 correlates to channel 8 on the other.
Follow this guide, and you would have no problems setting up your radios, regardless of brand, type or frequency band.