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Did you know that DMR had three different tiers? Digital Mobile Radio, best known as DMR, has three defined tiers that allow radio companies and manufacturers to create radio equipment specific to the users’ needs. The tier you fall under will depend on what kind of radio user you are and the equipment you use. So what are these three DMR tiers? Today we're going to share the three different tiers of DMR and the advantages to each of them.
DMR Tier 1 is the most limited in terms of power and frequency range. These limitations are due to ETSI defining DMR Tier 1 for unlicensed use.
DMR Tier 1 includes 16 channels for the 446MHz frequency band. This allows anyone to purchase Tier 1 radio equipment and use it right out of the box. Tier 1 radio equipment is also defined at the maximum power of 0.5 Watt RF power or lower. With tier 1 DMR radios being held to this lower transmission power and no repeater system access, they are better suited for individuals and small teams. We recommend using them for recreational activities, small retail or small businesses, and other activities that don’t require intensive infrastructure or comprehensive coverage.
DMR Tier 2 is radio equipment that can operate anywhere within the DMR frequency range from 66 to 960MHz. This wide range is why you find many amateur radio users in this tier. DMR Tier 2 equipment uses higher power radios, such as AnyTone 878 Plus, which is also compatible with DMR tier 1. Licensing is required to operate in direct mode and use base stations for repeating signals and widening your area coverage.
DMR Tier 2 equipment can utilize repeater stations to increase the range of your handheld or mobile radio. ETSI DMR Tier II specifies two-slot TDMA in 12.5kHz channels, meaning you can enjoy the power of two repeaters with only one system. This tier’s more powerful radios and repeater system capabilities give you the advantages of wide-area coverage and the advanced capabilities of DMR radios.
In the same frequency range of Tier 2 is Tier 3. Tier 3 equipment adds in many features such as SMS, location-based (GPS) services, telemetry data, and over-the-air programming to better fit professional users. Tier III equipment operates with trunking mode.
Trunking allows you to license fewer frequencies while maintaining the same number of calls and lowering licensing costs. Essentially trunking means channels are shared between users instead of forcing users to wait for a free channel. These unique features of DMR tier 3 make it most suitable for organizations involved in complex operations.
There you have it, a brief introduction to the 3 tiers of DMR. If you're a radio user looking for a tier 1 or 2 DMR radio, the AnyTone 878 Plus—the most popular digital handheld radio—will work well in replacing your current analog radio and will help you get on the air without confusion. Click here to order your AnyTone 878 Plus today!