dPMR 446 is a digital format of PMR446 (Personal Mobile Radio 446), a European licence-exempt two-way radio system which was introduced in analogue (FM) format in 1998 followed by digital (FDMA & TDMA) in 2005.
dPMR 446 provides a simple and cost-effective basis for instant communication between users over distances of up to 6km (although actual PMR446 coverage and range depends on terrain and the environment) with both transmission and reception taking place on the same channel.
dPMR446 equipment is capable of both voice and data modes of operation using a simplified addressing system that can be considered analogous with CTCSS use in PMR446 or with an extended addressing system as used by the fully functional TS102 658 type dPMR radios.
As well as offering voice and data capabilities, the dPMR446 protocol also supports combined voice+data so it is possible to embed data into a voice call or automatically append it at the end of a call.
This means that dPMR446 can offer all the usual voice services plus text messaging (SMS), status information texts, embedded data such as GPS position etc.
A further benefit of dPMR equipment is that they can operate in both analogue (FM) and digital (dPMR 446) modes which allows users to migrate from an existing analogue fleet to the benefits of digital dPMR
446 without having to replace all their radios at the same time.
All equipment for use on PMR446 frequencies, whether analogue or digital, is required to be in hand portable form, feature a fixed integral antenna and operate with an effective radiated power not exceeding
500mW (0.5 watts), while the use of base station, mobile radio, repeater or fixed infrastructure is specifically excluded.
Where can I use dPMR 446?
PMR446 compliant equipment may be used in the following CEPT (European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations) territories and their overseas or semi-autonomous territories without restriction:
|Bosnia & Herzegovina
- Includes the overseas or semi-autonomous territories of Denmark, France, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Russian Federation, Spain plus the constituent parts of the United Kingdom as well as the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.
- Assignments for use of licence free radios may change from time to time and the user is advised to check if PMR446 equipment can be used in the destination country.
What are the differences between dPMR 446, DMR 446 and Analogue (FM) PMR 446 formats
Digital PMR 446 v Analogue PMR 446
- Improved audio quality
- Improved service quality extending the effective communication range limit
- Data capability
- Increased battery life
dPMR 446 v DMR 446
dPMR is an FDMA (Frequency Division Multiple Access) channel access method offering true spectrum efficient 6.25kHz channel spacing while DMR 446 is a TDMA (Time division multiple access) channel access method with 12.5kHz channel spacing.
In practical terms, as dPMR 446 provides 16 digital channels against the 8 digital channels DMR 446 offers, users are better able to avoid channel congestion and restrictions of service availability especially in cities or at times of peak demand.
The future of Digital PMR 446
At the time of writing, the frequency band 446.1-446.2 MHz has been designated for use by digital PMR 446 equipment, however to ensure continued availability of license-exempt analogue and digital PMR446 frequency bands and reduce congestion,
new PMR 446 frequencies are being introduced across Europe from 1 January 2018 in line with Harmonised European Standards EN 300 296-2, EN 300 113-2 and EN 301 166-2.
The new frequencies, which follow ECC Decision (15)05, create greater capacity by extending the assigned frequency spectrum for digital equipment to 446.0 - 446.2 MHz
with a channel plan based on 6.25 kHz and 12.5 kHz spacing where the lowest carrier frequencies are 446.003125 MHz and 446.00625 MHz respectively.
dPMR 446 compliant equipment
Equipment tested and certified as complying with dPMR Mode 1 of the ETSI standard TS102 658 is available from members of the dPMR Assciation including Icom, Kenwood and Lisheng, details can be found in the Product Showcase pages or the manufacturer’s websites.
Please be aware that equipment offered by other manufacturers employing low quality vocoders and chipsets which have not been tested or certified as complying with the applicable ETSI standard may not offer the full range of functions or be interoperable with compliant equipment.
If in doubt, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for clarification.
Next, read about dPMR Mode 1 >