Approximately 1.5 months after receiving my Hytera PD362UC on 30 December 2017, I began experiencing problems receiving on DMR channels. Because of equipment limitations, it was several weeks before I was able to isolate the issue to the PD362, and eliminate possible other sources (e.g. SharkRF OpenSpot). Isolation of the issue to the PD362 could only occur after acquiring a Hytera RD982 UHF repeater, and working with other local Amateur Radio operators to reproduce the observed issues, with final issue isolation occurring in mid March of 2017.
I had contacted Giga Parts Customer Service to request repair or return of the radio. But, in the interval between last visiting their downloads page and contacting them, both a firmware update and a Customer Programming Software update had been posted, and the Customer Service representative suggested applying the firmware update before proceeding with any customer return of the radio.
After downloading the firmware update, there was some difficulty in applying the firmware update as the software failed and requested that the radio be placed into download mode, but the update provides no instruction on how to place the radio into download mode. I was able to to locate some instructions on a site in the Netherlands, and translate those instructions into english, using translate.google.com.
To place the PD362 into download mode:
It required three attempts to successfully enter download mode and have the firmware update software successfully update the radio.
Once the firmware was updated, the associated new Customer Programming Software (required for updated firmware) was installed and a download of the radio was performed to verify that the firmware version was now at the most recent version (i.e. V1.06.01.001).
Finally, an on-air test of the radio was performed. The results were that normal receive operation of DMR has been restored!
Needless to say, I am very happy and satisfied with this outcome. I am leaving the entire description of the failure posted here in the event that someone else encounters this issue and needs to use this documentation to both identify the issue and resolve the issue. Thanks to Giga Parts Customer Service for their assistance in quickly resolving this issue!
When receiving a DMR transmission, the audio from that transmission will be rendered only for a very short time after the transmission begins. Rendering typically occurs for approximately 100 to 500 milliseconds. Then rendering stops, accompanied by an amber illumination of the LED, and then, a short time later, the LED switches to a pulsing green LED at a repetition rate of approximately one flash per second.
It should be noted that there are some transmissions that will render, including transmissions through a DV4Mini that is uncalibrated and very distorted. But by and large, the majority of received transmissions reproduce the failure mode behavior.
The following figure is an extract from the PD362 manual, and illustrates all of the customer documentation of LED indications.
The entire sequence of LED illumination and audio rendering during the failure is:
The transition to solid amber is associated with the call hang-time, which would seem to imply that the radio has determined that the transmission has terminated.
It should be noted that the LED status indication extract from the manual provides only one description for a flashing green LED status, and this occurs only during power up. Since the radio is obviously powered up, the flashing green LED status during the failure mode appears to be an undocumented behavior.
The following short video illustrates the problem:
There is no public posting of firmware updates or Customer Programming Software (CPS) for the PD362. An exhaustive search produced only unofficial postings of firmware, targeting European/Asian regions, that is at a version that is down level from what is already in the radio or being used.
This, in itself, is a major frustration. Updating and version maintenance are a common place task that we all have extensive experience with. That radio manufacturers still do not trust us to perform these tasks, and inhibit us from maintaining our equipment represents very antiquated thinking, and is counter to good customer service. There was a time, in Amateur Radio, where all radios came with schematics and service information, and this did not impose undue risk upon radio manufacturers (i.e. there was no flood of customer returns).
I have installed the factory default code-plug, programming only a single group contact with a BrandMeister talk-group, and a single channel to hold that talk-group. The factory default code-plug demonstrates this same misbehavior described here.
Unlike some o the other makes / models of radios, where the Customer Programming Software (CPS) includes the ability to set VCO offsets (i.e. low, medium or high) on a per-channel basis, in order to obtain optimum behavior, the PD362 has quite a limited set of available customer options and does not include this capability. On the positive side, there is less opportunity for the customer to introduce a behavioral issue with the radio. On the negative side, there is less opportunity for the customer to attempt to isolate and correct an issue when the radio does misbehave.
Although some unofficial postings on the internet describe key sequences to enter a service menu on other Hytera series radios (i.e. the 600 and 700 series), these key sequences do not function with the PD362. Even if these sequences did function, unless service menu settings are labeled with obvious keys, they would be of little use.
No service manual could be located on-line for the PD362.
The following images depicts what is in the code-plug that is installed in the PD362, and was used to create the video above. All private contact information has been removed from the code-plug, leaving only group contact information. The relevant zone and channel, used to construct the video above, are included in the Customer Programming Software (CPS) images below.
|Posted by W7CIA on 18 March 2017|
|Please support the Idaho businesses, agencies and organizations that have supported CIARC.|
|This web-site is developed, funded and maintained by Ray Montagne (W7CIA)|