CB Radio - General Questions

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Citizens Band radio (CB) is a 2-way voice communication system for personal use for the general public.  It lets you talk from your truck, car, home, business, or boat to other people who have a CB radio. Technically, a CB radio is a transceiver. It functions both as a radio transmitter (when sending messages) and a receiver (when receiving messages). Citizens Band radio was created by the FCC in 1958. There are as total of 40 channels on the CB band.  Channel 19 is unofficially regarded as a general-purpose channel to make contacts and listen to conversations and reports of traffic and road conditions.  Channel 9 is reserved for emergency communications.

No license is required.  The FCC used to issue licenses for CBs, but they discontinued that requirement many years ago.

Unfortunately there is no easy answer to this question.

All Cobra CB radios transmit using the maximum FCC allowable power output of four watts.  There are two main factors that will affect the range of your transmissions:

RADIATED POWER
Although the radio transmits with 4 watts of power, the performance will be affected by how efficiently the antenna radiates this power.  Contributing factors include the following:

The condition and location of the antenna (higher is better)The physical length of the antenna (longer is better)The proper matching of the standing wave ratio or SWR.  (For more information on setting the SWR, please refer to the relevant FAQ)

ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS
Tall buildings, trees, hills, and interference from other CB radios all limit the effective range of a CB radio.  Certain atmospheric conditions (such as sunspot activity) can also affect the range for CBs.

If we were to eliminate all negative environmental factors, a properly set up base station could communicate between 10 to 15 miles, a mobile unit 5 to 7 miles, and a hand held unit approximately 2 miles with the only variable being the type of antenna used.  Unfortunately, these optimum conditions rarely exist and the range of your unit will typically be less depending on the conditions under which you are operating.

The easiest way to maximize your range is to use the longest antenna possible, and make sure that the SWR is properly adjusted.

There are only 3 important considerations when choosing a CB antenna:

The longer the antenna, the better the range.  There are always trade-offs between performance, aesthetics, and height restrictions, but just remember that the length of the antenna will have a direct affect on the range of your CB.

Fiberglass vehicles must use a “no-ground-plane” antenna.  This is a special antenna designed for fiberglass RVs and boats.  These vehicles need a special antenna since the body is not made of steel.  You can find “no-ground-plane” antennas at places that sell RV and boating accessories.

If you need weather reception, make sure the antenna is compatible with the weather band.  All center-loaded antennas and all fiberglass antennas are compatible with the weather band.  But if you choose a base-loaded antenna, make sure the package says that it is compatible with weather.

Beyond that, it is just a matter of choosing a mounting method that works best for you.  There are a large variety of mounting options available for CB antennas.

SWR is an acronym for “Standing Wave Ratio”.  It is a measure of how well the antenna is tuned to the CB band.  Any problems with the antenna, antenna cable, or antenna mount will show up during an SWR check.

Please note that the SWR is a measure of antenna performance.  A poor SWR is caused by the antenna, the antenna cable, or a poor antenna installation.  Poor SWR is not caused by the radio. 

The SWR should be below 3.  If the SWR gets higher than 3, then you will experience short range and the transmitter in the radio may overheat and eventually fail.  It is not mandatory to check the SWR, but if you are experiencing performance issues (short range) then it should be checked to ensure that the antenna is functioning properly.

Yes, a mobile CB can be used as a base station.  You will need a DC power supply and a base station antenna.

The power supply should have an output between 12 to 14 volts DC.  The power supply must be rated at 3 amps or more.

You will also need a CB base station antenna.  They are mounted on the outside of the house, similar to how a TV antenna is mounted.  DO NOT use a mobile antenna designed for a car, it will not work properly and will provide poor performance.  Indoor antennas also provide poor performance.  A properly mounted exterior base station antenna will provide very good performance.

FRS and GMRS are relatively new radio bands which have been opened to the general public. FRS and GMRS radios are compact handhelds and use FM transmission in the UHF radio band. They are very handy for personal communications such as at malls, carnivals, vacations, etc.  Cobra offers a variety of models.

FRS and GMRS radios operate at a much higher frequency than CB (approximately 465 megahertz, compared with 27 megahertz for CB). They therefore cannot communicate with CB radios.

All frequencies are in megahertz (MHz)

Channel

Frequency

Channel

Frequency

1

26.965

21

27.215

2

26.975

22

27.225

3

26.985

23

27.255

4

27.005

24

27.235

5

27.015

25

27.245

6

27.025

26

27.265

7

27.035

27

27.275

8

27.055

28

27.285

9

27.065

29

27.295

10

27.075

30

27.305

11

27.085

31

27.315

12

27.105

32

27.325

13

27.115

33

27.335

14

27.125

34

27.345

15

27.135

35

27.355

16

27.155

36

27.365

17

27.165

37

27.375

18

27.175

38

27.385

19

27.185

39

27.395

20

27.205

40

27.405

CB Radio - Features

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Weather Alert is a feature that alerts you of a weather emergency.  Here is how it works:

If the National Weather Service identifies a weather emergency (tornado, heavy thunderstorms, etc.) then they will transmit a special tone which is recognized by any Cobra CB radio that is equipped with Weather Alert.The CB radio sounds an alarm to warn of the danger.  It will sound the alarm even if you are talking on CB channels or even if the radio is turned off (as long as the red power lead still has voltage).  Upon hearing the alarm, turn on the weather channel and listen to the broadcast.

If you want to disable Weather Alert, simply turn the weather knob to the "OFF" or '0' position.  If your weather knob does not have an off position, switch to a weather channel where there is no active broadcast.

If you DO want the Weather Alert to work, make sure the weather knob is tuned to a live weather channel.

SoundTracker is a Cobra-exclusive noise reduction technology.  When enabled, a special noise-reduction circuit cuts noise up to 90% for a cleaner, clearer sound.

All CB radios operate on AM, which is the same type of transmission as a typical AM radio station.  In addition, some higher-end CB radios are equipped with single sideband (SSB), which is a different mode of transmission.  People using a regular CB radio cannot properly receive SSB signals, it will sound garbled. 

Please note that single sideband does not use different frequencies.  For example channel 19 has a frequency of 27.185MHz.  When you switch to single sideband, channel 19 is still 27.185MHz.  The mode of transmission changes, but the frequency does not change.

A single sideband CB can operate on more channels than a regular CB.  There are 40 upper-sideband channels, 40 lower-sideband channels, and the regular 40 CB channels.  In addition, higher power is allowed when using single sideband.  12 watts PEP is allowed, versus 4 watts on regular CB.  A single sideband radio therefore has better range than a regular CB (when operating on the sidebands).

The advantages of single sideband:

More channelsHigher power (12 watts is allowed on SSB, only 4 watts is allowed on AM)Quieter reception

Only a small fraction of CB owners have a single sideband radio.  Single sideband operation is more common among dedicated CB enthusiasts. 

Talkback lets you hear your voice when you transmit.  Your voice will come through the speaker in the CB, or through an external speaker if you have one plugged into the radio.

Why would you want to hear your voice?  Talkback lets you monitor exactly what other people are hearing when you transmit.  If you have a special accessory like an echo microphone, for example, Talkback lets you hear the amount of echo effect so that you can adjust the echo accordingly.

CB Radio - Operation

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NOTE:  Not all models have the following controls.

SQUELCH - Squelch controls the audio of the radio, turning it on or off.  If the squelch is turned down and you are not receiving a signal, you will hear background static.  This is normal, but can be annoying.  To avoid hearing the background static, slowly turn up the squelch just until the noise stops.  This is the normal operating position for the squelch.  If your radio receives a transmission, the squelch will "open up" and you will hear the transmission.  When the transmission goes away, the squelch will "close" and you will not hear the background static.  Do not turn the squelch any higher than necessary, otherwise your receive range will be reduced.

RF GAIN - RF Gain controls the receiver sensitivity.  Normally you would have the RF Gain turned up all the way for maximum sensitivity (and maximum range).  If the other person is nearby and you are receiving a strong signal, you can turn the RF Gain down.  This will provide very quiet reception.

DYNAMIKE - This control amplifies your voice to make you sound louder.  It is like a built-in power mike.  Normally you would have this control turned all the way up.  If you are using a power mike and you experience squealing or distortion, try turning down the Dynamike.

DELTA TUNE - If the other person's CB is a little off-frequency, their signal may sound a little distorted.  If so, you can adjust the Delta Tune to clarify their voice.  Delta Tune only affects received signals, it has no effect on transmit.  Normally you would leave the Delta Tune at the 12:00 position.

S/RF, SWR, CAL SWITCH - The normal operating position is the S/RF position.  In the S/RF position the meter will show transmit power and receive signal strength.  The CAL and SWR positions are only for check the SWR of the antenna.

SWR - This is a measure of antenna performance.  Some radios have a built-in SWR meter to measure the SWR.  It tells you how well the antenna system is tuned to the CB band.

AUTOMATIC NOISE LIMITER (ANL) - This is a noise filter, to help eliminate engine noise.  All mobile CBs have an ANL.  Most mobile CB radios have a full-time ANL, while others have a switch to turn it on and off.  In almost all vehicles it will be necessary to have it turned on.

NOISE BLANKER (NB) - This is an additional noise filter, to provide more filtering.  If there is no NB switch, then the CB does not have a noise blanker.  Don't use the noise blanker unless you need to, because it slightly lowers the receiver sensitivity.

ST SWITCH - Soundtracker (ST) is a Cobra exclusive noise reduction circuit, to provide quieter reception and stronger transmission.  If there is a lot of noise, however, the Soundtracker circuit can become overwhelmed and will not provide any noise reduction.  Soundtracker works best with moderate to low noise levels.  Additionally, maximum benefit is obtained if both radios have Soundtracker.  Using Soundtracker is optional.  Try it on and off, and choose which way you like best.

PA SWITCH - To use PA (Public Address), you need to connect a loudspeaker to the PA jack on the rear of the CB.  When you talk into the microphone, you will be heard over the loudspeaker.  Typically you would install a weather-proof speaker under the hood.  On models with a Dynamike control, the Dynamike will control PA volume.  On models without a Dynamike, PA volume is not adjustable.  Please note that on some models you will hear CB reception through the PA speaker.  This is a feature to allow you to monitor CB traffic while out of your vehicle.  If you do not want to hear the CB reception, just turn the volume control down.

CH9, CH19 SWITCH - Channel 9 is reserved for emergency use only.  Channel 19 is the most popular channel, where you can get traffic reports, etc.  This switch provides instant access to channel 9 or channel 19.  In order to select other channels, this switch must be in the NORMAL position.

USB/AM/LSB SWITCH - This switch is used on radios equipped with Single Sideband (SSB), which is a special mode of transmission.  Use the AM position to communicate to regular CBs.  Use the USB and LSB positions to communicate to other Single Sideband radios.

VOICELOCK - This control is only used on Single Sideband radios.  When you are switched to USB or LSB, received signals may sound distorted.  Adjust the Voicelock control to clarify the signal.  Voicelock only affects received signals, it has no effect on transmit.

TALK-BACK - This control lets you monitor your voice when you transmit.  You might be wondering, “why would I want to do that?”.  Some people like to install sound effects in the CB, such as echo, reverb, etc.  If you are using an echo control, the talkback feature lets you monitor the echo level.  You will hear exactly how your voice sounds to other people.

Dual Watch lets you program the radio to monitor 2 specific channels.  It will constantly monitor these channels for activity.

Tune to the 1st channel you want to program.Press and hold the DW button until "DW" begins flashing on the display.Immediately tune to the 2nd channel you want to program.  (You have 4 seconds to start changing to the 2nd channel)Immediately press and hold the DW button until the "DW" icon stops flashing. (After changing to the 2nd channel, you have 4 seconds to press the DW button)The radio should now be scanning the 2 channels.  If not, try turning up the squelch.

CB Radio - Installation

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With modern vehicles it has become difficult to find a spot for a CB radio.  Traditionally, a CB was mounted under-dash.  However most vehicles now have a center console which makes an under-dash installation impractical if not impossible.  There are no specialized mounts available for mounting a CB in modern vehicles.  Here are a few suggestions:

ON THE DASH
You might consider mounting the CB on top of the dash.  Just be sure to properly secure it so that it does not become a projectile in the event of an accident.  Before mounting the radio, check whether state and local ordinances forbid mounting items on the dash.

FABRICATE A MOUNT FOR THE CENTER CONSOLE
Depending on the layout in your vehicle you might be able to mount the radios somewhere along the center console.  You will need to use your imagination and ingenuity for this, because there are no commercial mounts available. 

LAY THE CB ON THE PASSENGER SEAT
This is workable for temporary use, but only if you do not have a passenger!  You will want to prop up the radio so that you can see the front panel and also so that the speaker is not blocked.

CONSIDER THE 75 WX ST
The 75 WX ST has all the controls in the handset, and there is just a small junction box for connecting power and antenna.  The junction box easily fits under the dash or under a seat.

RADIOS WITH 2 POWER LEADS

The red wire is typically connected to a fuse in the fuse box.  Choose one of these fuses:

If you want the CB to turn off when you turn off the ignition, then use the fuse for the AM/FM radio.If you want the CB to get constant +12V so that it runs even with the ignition off, then use the fuse for the brake lights.

After connecting the red wire to a fuse, turn on the radio and also turn on the ignition.  Now touch the black wire to various screws under the dash.  When the radio turns on you have found a ground screw.  Connect the black wire to that screw.

Alternatively, the wires can be connected directly to the battery.  Connect the red wire to (+) and the black wire to (-).

Cigarette plug: If you want to use a cigarette plug to power the unit, connect the black wire to the negative lead (side terminal) on the plug.  Connect the red wire  to the positive lead (center tip) of the plug.  Radio Shack sells a cigarette plug that is very easy to use.  Their part number is 270-036.

RADIOS WITH 3 POWER LEADS

The black wire goes to a chassis ground screw.The red wire goes to a switched +12 volt source, such as the fuse for the am/fm radio.The orange wire is for the memory retention of your CB radio and should be connected to a constant +12 volt source such as the fuse for the brake lights.

With the radio wired as above, the radio will turn off when the ignition is turned off.  The orange wire will provide power to the radio so that it remembers the channel.

Cigarette plug: If you want to use a cigarette plug to power your radio, connect the black wire to the negative lead (side terminal) on the plug.  Connect both the red and orange wires together to the positive lead (center tip) of the plug.  Your unit will function properly this way but will not retain the channel memory.  When power is applied your radio will come up on channel 9.  Radio Shack sells a cigarette plug that is very easy to use.  Their part number is 270-036.

29 LX-SERIES

These models have a built-in SWR meter.  Proceed as follows:

Park at least 20 feet away from trees and buildings.  Close all doors, hood, and trunk.Choose the channel to check (channel 19 is recommended).On the radio, press the SWR/CAL button until the display says “CAL”.While holding the transmit button on the microphone, turn the SWR CAL knob until the meter reads to the CAL mark.  The cal mark is located in the upper-right corner of the meter.Release the transmit button, then push the SWR/CAL button until the display says “SWR”.Press the transmit button on the microphone, and then read the SWR on the top scale of the meter.  The SWR should be below 3.  The lower, the better.

29-SERIES AND 148-SERIES

These models have a built-in SWR meter.  Proceed as follows:

Park at least 20 feet away from trees and buildings.  Close all doors, hood, and trunk.Choose the channel to check (channel 19 is recommended).Set the switch on the front panel to the CAL setting.While holding the transmit button on the microphone. adjust the CAL knob so that the needle goes all the way to the right, onto the CAL triangle in the upper-right corner of the meter.While still holding the transmit button, set the switch to the SWR position.Read the SWR on the meter.  The top scale of the meter is the SWR scale.  The SWR should be below 3.  The lower the better

ALL OTHER MODELS

You will need to purchase an SWR meter from Radio Shack or a local truck stop or CB dealer.  You will also need a short coax cable to connect the meter to the radio.  The cable should be 3 feet or shorter.  Follow the directions that come with the meter.  The SWR should be below 3.  The lower the better.

Before attempting any adjustments, review the documentation for your antenna to see how it should be adjusted.  A variety of methods are used depending on the type of antenna.  Following are general guidelines.

Check the SWR on channels 1 and 40.If the SWR is lower on channel 1, then the antenna is too long.  Make the antenna shorter.If the SWR is lower on channel 40, then the antenna is too short.  Make the antenna longer.Continue to adjust the antenna until the SWR is approximately the same on channels 1 & 40 AND is less than 3.  The antenna is now properly tuned for the CB band.

To adjust steel whip antennas, loosen the set screw and raise or lower the whip.  If necessary, you can cut the antenna to make it shorter (cut in 1/4" increments).

On center-loaded antennas, adjust the length of the top whip.

On fiberglass antennas with no visible means of adjustment, adjust as follows:

Remove the plastic cap from the top of the antenna.Slit the plastic cover to expose the top coils of wire.To lengthen the antenna, pull the top coil up.To shorten the antenna, cut off the top coil.Replace the plastic cap.

You will need a DC power supply and a base station antenna.

The power supply should have an output between 12 to 14 volts DC.  The power supply must be rated at 3 amps or more.

You will also need a CB base station antenna.  They are mounted on the outside of the house, similar to how a TV antenna is mounted.  DO NOT use a mobile antenna designed for a car, it will not work properly and will provide poor performance.  Indoor antennas also provide poor performance.  A properly mounted exterior base station antenna will provide very good performance.

CB Radio - Troubleshooting

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First check the front-panel settings of your radio:

Turn the squelch control all the way down.If your radio has an RF Gain control, turn it all the way up.If your radio has a Dynamike control, turn it all the way up.

Your radio is now adjusted for maximum range.  You should be hearing background static.  To stop the static, slowly turn up the squelch just until the static stops.

If you are still having problems, then the next step is to check the SWR of your antenna and make sure that it is below 3.

If the SWR is good and you are still unhappy with the range, then installing a longer antenna should help.

Check the fuse in the power lead.  If it is blown, then try replacing it.  Model 148 takes a 3 amp fuse, and all other models take a 2 amp fuse.

If the radio still does not turn on, then bring the radio to the battery and temporarily touch the power leads directly to the battery.  If the radio turns on, then you know that the radio is good and you need to double-check your wiring.  If the radio still does not turn on, then the radio will require servicing.

Please double-check your wiring.  The red wire is positive and the black wire is negative.

Make sure that you are using the correct size fuse.  Model 148 takes a 3 amp fuse, and all other models take a 2 amp fuse.  Do not install a fuse larger than these!  Doing so will void the warranty.

You can also try bringing the radio to the battery and temporarily touch the power leads directly to the battery.  If the radio turns on, then you know that the radio is good and you need to double-check your wiring.  If the fuse still blows, then the radio will require servicing.

The 75 WX ST and all 19-Series models use electronic tuning.  These models do not retain the channel number when power is lost.  When power is applied they will come up on channel 9.  To retain the channel number, connect the red power lead to a constant +12 volt source.  The fuse for the brake lights is usually a good choice.  You will need to turn off the radio when leaving the vehicle.

The display on the 75 WX ST can be configured to show either the channel number or the channel frequency.  As an example, the frequency for channel 19 is 27.185.

To change the display, press and hold the MEMORY button.   This will toggle the display between channel number and channel frequency.

If your particular model has a scan feature but the radio will not scan channels, then most likely you need to turn up the squelch control.  If the squelch is open for any reason, then the radio is in receive mode and will not scan.  Try turning up the squelch.

It is not uncommon for the radio to stop scanning on a particular channel, even if there is no apparent activity.  This can happen if there is some kind of local interference on that channel which is causing the squelch to open.  This will cause the radio to stop scanning.  The solution is to turn up the squelch enough so that the radio scans past the offending channel.

Dash Cams - CDR 900 - General Questions

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The CDR900 operates independently right out of the box. However in order to access advanced settings and features, the free Cobra DriveHD app on a smartphone is required.

The DriveHD app is available for both Android phones and iPhones.

You may connect up to 4 cameras to a single smartphone.

The CDR 900 can accept microSD cards up to 64GB in size.

8GB - 2.1hrs

16GB - 4.2hrs

32GB - 8.4hrs

64GB - 16.8hrs

The CDR 900 records approximately 1.5 hours on internal battery power. In this mode the screen will go blank after 30 seconds to preserve battery life.

Yes, the CDR 900 records audio. Audio recording can be turned on and off. The default setting is ON.

Some settings are accessible only from the DriveHD app. In order to change the date/time and other advanced settings, please download the free Cobra DriveHD app into your smartphone. Then enable WiFi on the CDR 900 and connect to your phone via WiFi.

A password can be assigned to the CDR 900 to prevent unauthorized access. The password is entered via the DriveHD app. If you forget the password, it can be cleared by resetting the CDR 900 to factory defaults:

1. Press the MENU button on the CDR 900 to go to SETTINGS.

2. Choose FACTORY RESET.

It is not possible to stream video footage directly to the internet. The quickest option is to set the camera for "local connection" in which it will save video into your Smartphone. After the video is saved you can then upload the video file from your phone.

Yes. Cloud mode configures the camera so that it connects directly to a Wifi router. The video is then streamed to a server and can be viewed from anywhere in the world on your smartphone. The camera does not record video while in cloud mode.

It is not possible to access the CDR 900 from a computer. The Cobra DriveHD app is only available for smartphones.

In order to support advanced video features, the CDR 900 only offers WiFi connectivity. Bluetooth is not available.

For best video quality, we recommend using a Class 10 SD card.

Please check your phone's network settings, PROXY options should be turned off, otherwise it will prompt you to enter a password.

Dash Cams - CDR 840 - General Questions

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1. Tap OK once to stop recording mode.

2. Tap Menu button once.

3. Tap down arrow once to highlight "General Settings" and Tap OK once to access General Settings Menu.

4. Tap down arrow a couple times to highlight "Date/Time" option then Tap OK.

5. Use Up/Down arrows to adjust the "Year" then Tap OK to apply your changes and move to next option.

6. Repeat step 5 to adjust "Month", "Day", "Hour", "Minutes", (Seconds is optional).

7. Tap OK to exit Date/Time Setup.

8. Tap Menu button twice to exit Menu and return to video recording mode.

1) Tap OK once to stop recording mode.

2) Tap Mode (M) button twice to see the list of recorded video files.

3) Tap Menu button once to access Playback menu.

4)Tap on down arrow twice, select the "Protect" option and press OK to see the 4 protect icons listed in the order below.

Protect a file.

Un-protect a file.

Protect ALL files.

Un-protect ALL files.

5) Tap down arrow 3 times to select the "Unprotect ALL" files option.

6) Tap OK once. To un-protect video files, simply tap OK two more times. To unprotect picture files, select the picture camera icon then tap OK twice.

7) Tap the UP arrow to select "Delete" option then press OK.

8) Tap down arrow once to delete (ALL files). Press OK 3 times to delete video files.

9) Tap Menu once button to exit Playback menu.

10) Tap Mode button twice to return to Video Recording screen.

Press the OK button. The Red Record Dot starts flashing or stops flashing, and the record duration changes to display total time recorded.

Yes, however it must be plugged into a (5V,1A ) mini USB "power cord" in the vehicle or a USB charge block on the wall outlet . The camera will not record while connected to a USB port on a computer.

That may be a problem with the SD card, or the user may be locking files manually by tapping on the orange button which caused the SD card to get full of locked files and the unit stopped recording. The SD card must be formated by Tapping Menu button once, Select General Settings, then scroll down and select "Format",  tap OK button, select the (O) to apply. That should fix the issue. If it doesn’t, then it would be necessary to try a new SD card.

Video footage can be viewed by either of the following: USB port, HDMI port, or SD card slot.

The camera operates on 5V,1A. It is recommended to power it using the included power cord. However, you may also operate it using an aftermarket mini USB wiring kit. It may also be powered through a USB charge block on AC wall outlet, (Not on a PC).

Auto power off is when the camera shuts off after losing power to it. (Turning engine off)

Idle power off is when the camera is turned ON, but not recording.

It requires having a video chatt application such as Skype installed and running on your computer.

Please refer to page 9 of the owner's manual.

1. Please make sure the power cord is properly inserted on both ends. You may try a different power cord for testing purposes to see if the problem is the cord.

2. If you made menu changes, I would recommend restoring default settings, very likely either “idle power off” or “auto power off” feature is enabled.

3. If problem continues after restoring default settings and trying a new power cord, the unit needs warranty service. Call our Customer Care Group at 773 889 3087.

1Amp fuse

Cobra dash cams operate on 5VDC, 1A.

Utilize the Cobra Drive HD Player for Windows, or a third party player for Mac.

Operating temp -10°C to +60°C

Storage temp -20°C to +60°C

32GB is the biggest size supported.

Please note, you may use a standard SD card. However, for best video quality, we recommend using Class 6 or Class 10 SD cards.

Green = Battery fully charged. Red = Battery is charging. Orange = Display is off but camera is still on ("Screen Saver" is enabled in the menu)

The video clip time is probably set to (X). In order for it to loop, it MUST be set to 3,5 or 10 minutes. Check video settings.

Motion detection is enabled. Please access General Settings menu and disable motion detection. The camera will record continuously without time lapses between video clips.

Dash Cams - CDR 830 - General Questions

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4GB, 840x480: 35min

4GB, 1280x720: 29min

4GB 1440x1080: 23min

4GB, 1920x1080: 28min

8GB, 840x480: 69min

8GB, 1280x720: 58min

8GB 1440x1080: 45min

8GB, 1920x1080: 55min

16GB, 840x480: 138min

16GB, 1280x720: 116min

16GB 1440x1080: 90min

16GB, 1920x1080: 110min

32GB, 840x480: 276min

32GB, 1280x720: 232min

32GB 1440x1080: 180min

32GB, 1920x1080: 220min

NOTES

1080PHD offers longer recording time due to higher video compression.

Units are supplied with an 8GB microSD card.

Maximum SD card size is 32GB.

With the factory default setup, the CDR 830 will automatically turn on and start recording video when the power cord is plugged in. 

To start or stop video recording, press the REC button (right side, bottom button).  A red icon will flash in the upper-left corner to indicating recording mode.

While a video is recording:

Press the UP button to mute the microphone.  Audio will not be recorded.Press the DOWN button to lock the video file.  The current video will be permanently saved and will not be overwritten.Press the MODE button to blank the display (video recording will continue).

1. If the unit is currently recording a video, press the REC button to stop recording.

2. Press the MODE button to get into Camera Mode.  You should see a camera icon in the upper-left corner of the display.

3. The REC button is now the shutter button.  Press the REC button to take a picture.

4. To return to Video Mode, Press the MODE button 2 times.

NOTE:  It is not possible to enter Playback Mode while a video is being recorded.

Press the MODE button to Enter Playback Mode.  When the CDR310 is in Playback Mode, the upper left corner should show one of two icons, either:

The current file is a video

The current file is a snapshot

Press the DOWN button to view thumbnails of the available files.  Choose the desired file and then press the REC button.

To start and stop playback of a video, press the REC button.  While playing a video, press the UP / DOWN buttons to adjust the volume.

When viewing a snapshot, you can zoom in by pressing the UP button.  Press the DOWN button to zoom out.

To lock a file so that it never gets deleted:

Press the MENU button.Scroll to “Protect”.Press the REC button 2 times.Press the MENU button.A key icon appears at the top of the display.

To exit Playback Mode, press the MODE button.

Method 1:  You can permanently save the current video clip by pressing the DOWN button.  A lock icon will appear on the left side of the screen.  The current video file will be permanently saved and will not be overwritten.

Method 2:  Files can be locked from the Playback Menu.  See the FAQ which describes the Playback Menu Options.

These options can be accessed by pressing the MENU button while in Video Mode.
NOTE:  The menu is not accessible while a video is being recorded.

Resolution

Lets you choose the video format.

Loop Recording

When recording video, the CDR 830 does not save one long video file.  Instead it records sequential video clips.  The “Loop Recording” setting lets you choose the length of the video clips.  After the SD card is full, the oldest file will be deleted in order to save a new file.

If Loop Recording is set to OFF then the unit will record a 30-minute video and then stop.

Exposure

Adjusts the image light gain.

Motion Detection

This will turn on/off the motion sensor.  When the CDR830 detects motion in the filed of view, it will start recording.  The recording will stop if motion stops.

Record Audio

Allows you to enable/disable the microphone.  When recording a video you can also control the microphone by pressing the UP button.

Date Stamp

You can decide whether to have a date stamp on the recorded video.

G-Sensor

Allows you to enable/disable the G-sensor.  When set to ON the CDR830 will permanently save the current video clip if an impact is detected.

These options can be accessed by pressing the MENU button while in Camera Mode.

Capture Mode

This lets you set a delay timer.  After pressing the shutter button there will be a delay before the snapshot is taken.

Resolution

Lets you choose the picture resolution.  The higher the resolution, the more memory that is used for each snapshot.

Sequence

If turned OFF, the unit will take 1 picture every time you press the shutter button.  If turned ON, the unit will take a sequence of 5 snapshots in quick succession. 

Quality

Lets you set the picture quality.  The higher the level, the more memory that is used per snapshot.

Sharpness

Adjusts the sharpness of snapshots.

White Balance

Can be adjusted depending on the light source.  This setting affects color accuracy.

Color

Lets you choose between color, black & white, and sepia.

ISO

Higher numbers are for low light situations but image quality will be reduced.

Exposure

Lets you lighten or darken the exposure setting.

Face Detection

Lets you choose between Face Detection, Smile Detection, and OFF.

Anti-Shaking

Image stability

Quick Review

With each snapshot, you can see either a 2-second review or a 5-second review.

Date Stamp

You can choose whether to have a date stamp on the snapshot.

The Setup Menu can be accessed by pressing the MENU button 2 times so that the wrench icon at the top of the display is highlighted.
NOTE:  The Setup Menu is not accessible while a video is being recorded.

Date/Time

Lets you set the date and time.

Auto Power Off

If the CDR830 senses that the power is disconnected, it assumes that the engine has stopped running.  It will automatically power down after the selected timeout.  Please note that if the cigarette socket stays live even when the key is not in the ignition then Auto Power Off will not work properly.

Beep Sound

Keypress beep

Language

There are 9 languages to choose from

Frequency

50Hz (used in Europe)
60Hz (used in the USA)

Format

Internal Memory:  Format the internal memory
TF Card:  Format the SD card (all data will be erased)

Default Setting

Load factory default settings

Power Saving Mode

Blanks the screen after the designated timeout.

Version

Shows the firmware version.

These options can be accessed by pressing the MENU button while in Playback Mode.

Delete

Lets you delete either the current file or all files.

Protect

Lets you lock either the current file or all files.  A locked file will be saved permanently and will never be overwritten.

There are four infrared LEDs around the camera lens for providing night illumination.  They are not visible to the naked eye.  To turn on or off the lights, momentarily press the POWER button.  When the LEDs are ON, an icon will appear on the right side of the display.  Please note that the lights only work in Video Mode.

GPS data is automatically embedded in the video file.  To view GPS information, please use the Cobra Dash Cam Player. 

Most likely you have Power Saving Mode enabled which blanks the display after a designated timeout (see the FAQ regarding Setup Menu Options).  If you press any button the display will turn back on.

If you see a message that the memory card is full, then it will be necessary to delete files from the memory card.  The only reason for the memory card to fill up is if numerous files are marked as “protected”.  A protected file will never be overwritten and will permanently consume memory space.  If enough files are marked as protected, there might not be sufficient room to record new video.

There are only three ways a file can be marked as protected:

If you press the DOWN button while a video is recording, then the current video clip will be marked as protected.  This feature only protects the current video file.If you access the menu from Playback Mode, there is an option to protect files.If the G-sensor detects an impact, then the current video file will be automatically protected.

How to empty the memory card:

NOTE:  If there are any files that you would like to keep, then copy them to a computer before proceeding.

Access the Setup Menu by pressing the MENU button 2 times.  The wrench icon at the top of the display should be highlighted.Scroll down to “Format” and press the REC button.Scroll to "TF Card" and press the REC button.Highlight “OK” and press the REC button.Press the Menu button when formatting is done.The memory has now been cleared and you should be able to record new video.

This can only happen if numerous files are marked as “protected”.  A protected file is permanently saved and will not be deleted.  If enough protected files accumulate, it could eventually fill up all available memory.

There are only three ways to protect a file:

If you press the DOWN button while a video is recording, then the current video clip will be marked as protected.  This feature only protects the current video file.If you access the menu from Playback Mode, there is an option to protect files.If the G-sensor detects an impact, then the current video file will be automatically protected.

What to do:

Empty the memory card.  Refer to the FAQ “The memory card is full”.Avoid manually marking a file as protected unless you really need to save one.If the memory still fills up, then the G-sensor might be triggering.  In this case please make sure that your unit has the latest firmware.  You can also try turning off the G-sensor.  Refer to the FAQ regarding “Video Menu Options”. 

The only reason for your unit to turn off is if you are operating on internal battery power.

If the battery runs down then the unit will turn off.If Auto-Power-Off is enabled, then the CDR830 will turn off after the appropriate timeout (see the FAQ regarding Setup Menu Options).

Check the battery icon
Look at the icon in the lower-right of the display.  If you see a battery icon, then the unit is running on the internal battery.  It is not getting power from the power cord, and your unit may turn off unexpectedly.

Check the power cord
Make sure that the power cord is fully seated in the CDR810.  Also make sure that the LED is illuminated on the cigarette plug.  If the LED does not light up, then the plug is not getting power from the cigarette socket.  Try removing and reinserting the cigarette plug.

The auto-power-off feature works by monitoring the voltage on the power cord.  If the CDR830 detects that the supply voltage is gone, then it assumes that the engine is turned off and it will automatically turn off after the appropriate timeout.

On some cars, however, the cigarette socket is still live even when the key is out of the ignition.  The CDR810 will always see the supply voltage and it will not know that the engine is off.  Unfortunately on these cars the auto-power-off feature will not work.

While it should be rare for a glitch to occur, it can be easily cleared by pressing the RESET button on the top of your unit.  In order to access the RESET button you will need to remove the unit from the mounting bracket.  Use a toothpick or a small paper clip to press the RESET button.

To check the firmware version in your unit:

1. If a video is recording then stop the video.

2. Press the MENU button 2 times.  The wrench icon should be highlighted at the top of the display.

3. Scroll down to VERSION and press the REC button.

Please note, you may use a standard SD card. However, for best video quality, we recommend using Class 6 or Class 10 SD cards.

Dash Cams - CDR 825E - General Questions

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Please be sure the power cord is plugged into the USB port on the bracket, not directly on the camera.If you made changes in the menu, please restore it to default settings.

Must stop recording mode first by tapping once on (Record/Select) button. Press Menu button once. Tap “Up” button twice to highlight “Restore Defaults”. Then tap on (Rec/Select) to make your selection. Use “Down” button to highlight “YES” then Tap (Rec/Select) to apply changes. Tap “Menu” button to exit menu and return to normal operation screen.

You must stop recording mode first by tapping (Rec/select) button at the TOP right of the unit. The word REC should disappear from the screen. Then: 1. Press Menu (blue) button on the Front-left of the unit to access main menu. 2. Use Up/down buttons on the Front-right of the unit to scroll through menu options and highlight date/time. 3. Use (Rec/select) button on the Top-right to ENTER date/time options. (Keep an eye on the year and date at the VERY bottom of the screen) 4. Use Up/down buttons on the Front-right to adjust date/time. 5. Use (Rec/Select) button on the Top-right to SAVE each setting. 6. When done, press Menu button to EXIT settings menu.

You must stop recording mode first by tapping the (Rec/select) button at the TOP right of the unit. The word REC should disappear from the screen. Then follow these steps: 1. Press Menu (blue) button on the Front-left of the unit to access main menu. 2. Use Up/down buttons on the Front-right of the unit to scroll through menu options and highlight FORMAT SD CARD option. 3. Press (Rec/select) button on the Top-right to FORMAT card. Use Up/down buttons on the Front-right to highlight (YES) and press (Rec/select) to confirm. 4. When done formatting, the unit will return to video options menu. Press Menu button to EXIT settings. 5. Press (Rec/select) button on the Top-right to resume recording mode.

Stop recording mode by tapping on "Record/Select" button once. 1. Tap on "Mode Switches" a couple of times to access video files. 2. Use Up/Down buttons to scroll over video files. Locked videos have a padlock icon. 3. Select desired locked file then tap on the "File/Lock" button to unlock the file(s) first. 4. Once the file(s) is unlocked, tap Menu button. It will give you the option to delete current file? 5. Use Up/Down button to highlight your choice of (Yes) or (ALL) to erase all unlocked files. 6. Tap on "Mode Switches" to exit menu and return to normal operation.

Please check the menu settings to make sure "video clip time" is set to 3, 5 or 10 minutes. If it has an "X" next to it, the camera records one continuous clip until the card is full, then it stops recording.

If the video clip time is set to 3, 5 or 10 minutes, then change the "G-sensor" sensitivity to "low" to prevent it from locking so many videos. Bumpy roads or vehicles with a lot of vibration may cause the G-sensor to lock unwanted files.

Please note, you may use a standard SD card. However, for best video quality, we recommend using Class 6 or Class 10 SD cards.

The video clip time is probably set to (X). In order for it to loop, it MUST be set to 3,5 or 10 minutes. Check video settings.

Dash Cams - CDR 820 - General Questions

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Yes, you may simply adjust date/time and proceed to use the camera

First, you must stop recording mode by pressing the front right button once. Then press/release "menu" button underneath the unit. Use the 2 buttons next to menu to scroll over to "General Settings". Press the mode (enter) button to access settings menu, then use the 2 buttons next to menu to scroll up/down to Date/Time. Use the "mode" button to access date/time settings. Use scroll buttons to change date/time then press "mode" to apply the changes and exit date/time menu.

Yes, it is normal for dashcams to operate warm.

Yes, there is a "Rotate” option in the menu that allows the user to operate the unit upside down while recording right side up.

This camera operates on a 5V ‘mini” USB power port. You may use any standard mini USB hardwire kit currently available on the market.

The maximum recommended size is 32GB

Yes. Although not available from Cobra, this camera takes a standard mini USB cable. You may use any aftermarket mini USB cable from your local electronics store

Yes, you may use any standard "mini" USB power cord to operate this unit.

First, you must stop recording mode by pressing the front right button once. Then press/release "menu" button underneath the unit. Use the 2 buttons next to menu to scroll up/down through menu options. Press "MODE" (enter) button to make your selections. i.e. "Format SD card" or "Delete files".

Yes You may play the videos using MAC's default media player or by downloading a third party player.

Having the video-clip-time-setting set to "X" instead of 5 or 10 minutes will cause it do this when the memory card reaches it's capacity.

No. The CDR 820 is a dashboard camera. It must be kept away from the elements of nature

Yes. The CDR 820 is set at the factory to start recording automatically as soon as it receives power. However, this setting can be changed in the menu.

Please note, you may use a standard SD card. However, for best video quality, we recommend using Class 6 or Class 10 SD cards.

Dash Cams - CDR 810 - General Questions

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With the factory default setup, the CDR 810 will automatically start recording video when it is turned on.  Turn start or stop video recording, press the REC button (front chrome button).  The video LED will flash to indicating recording mode.

You can choose whether to also record audio by pressing the MIC button (front chrome button).  The mic LED will illuminate to show when audio is being recorded.

Press the MODE button to get into Camera Mode.  You should see a camera icon in the upper-left corner of the display.The MODE button is now the shutter button.  Press the MODE button to take a picture.To return to Video Mode, Press the REC button.

Method 1:  You can permanently save the current video clip by pressing the orange button.  A lock icon will appear on the left side of the screen.  The current video file will be permanently saved and will not be overwritten.

Method 2:  Files can be locked from the Playback Menu.  See the FAQ which describes the Playback Menu Options.

To record video to the rear, the lens housing must be rotated so that the lens is facing rearward.  Grab the lens housing and twist.

After rotating the lens housing the video will be upside-down (because the lens is now upside-down).  To flip the video:

1. If your unit is currently recording video, press the REC button to stop the recording.

2. Press the MENU button 2 times.  The wrench icon at the top of the display should be highlighted.

3. Scroll down to“Rotate” and press the orange button.

4. Highlight “On” and press the orange button.

These options can be accessed by pressing the MENU button while in Video Mode.
NOTE:  The menu is not accessible while a video is being recorded.

Resolution

Lets you choose the video format.

Exposure

Adjusts the image light gain.

Cyclic Record

When recording video, the CDR 810 does not save one long video file.  Instead it records sequential video clips.  The “Cyclic Record” setting lets you choose the length of the video clips.  After the SD card is full, the oldest file will be deleted in order to save a new file.

If Cyclic Record is set to OFF then the unit will still maintain a cyclic record, but only consisting of four 10-minute video clips.  The entire memory space will not be utilized.

Motion Detection

This will turn on/off the motion sensor.  When the CDR810 detects motion in the filed of view, it will start recording.  The recording will stop if motion stops.

Audio

Allows you to enable/disable the microphone.  The microphone button provides the same functionality.

Date Stamp

You can decide whether to have a date stamp on the recorded video.

G-Sensor

You can adjust the sensitivity of the G-sensor.  When the G-sensor is enabled, the CDR810 will permanently save the current video clip if an impact is detected.

These options can be accessed by pressing the MENU button while in Camera Mode.

Capture Mode

This lets you set a delay timer.  After pressing the shutter button there will be a delay before the snapshot is taken.

Sequence

If turned OFF, the unit will take 1 picture every time you press the shutter button.  If turned ON, the unit will take a sequence of 5 snapshots in quick succession. 

Resolution

Lets you choose the picture resolution.  The higher the resolution, the more memory that is used per snapshot.

Quality

Lets you set the picture quality.  The higher the level, the more memory that is used per snapshot.

Sharpness

Adjusts the sharpness of snapshots.

White Balance

Can be adjusted depending on the light source.  This setting affects color accuracy.

ISO

Higher numbers are for low light situations but image quality will be reduced.

Anti-Shaking

Image stability

Date Stamp

You can choose whether to have a date stamp on the snapshot.

The Setup Menu can be accessed by pressing the MENU button 2 times so that the wrench icon at the top of the display is highlighted.
NOTE:  The Setup Menu is not accessible while a video is being recorded.

Rotate

Flips the image.  This is handy if you turn the camera around so that it is facing rearward.

Date/Time

Lets you set the date and time.

Auto Power Off

If the CDR810 senses that the power is disconnected, it assumes that the engine has stopped running.  It will automatically power down after the selected timeout.  Please note that if the cigarette socket stays live even when the key is not in the ignition then Auto Power Off will not work properly.

Beep Sound

Keypress beep

Language

There are 10 languages to choose from

Volume

Volume level can be adjusted from 0 – 8

Frequency

50Hz (used in Europe)
60Hz (used in the USA)

TV Mode

PAL (used in Europe)
NTSC (used in the USA)

Default Setting

Load factory default settings

Format

Format the SD card (all data will be erased)

Screensavers

Blanks the screen after the designated timeout.

Auto Record

When set to ON, the CDR810 will automatically start recording when it is turned on.

Light Set

Turn on/off the IR LEDs.  There are four infrared LEDs around the camera lens for providing night illumination.  They are not visible to the naked eye.  A star/moon icon at the top of the display indicates that the LEDs are enabled.

The IR LEDs can also be turned on and off by tapping the power button.

Version

Shows the firmware version.

These options can be accessed by pressing the MENU button while in Playback Mode.

Delete

Lets you delete either the current file or all files.

Protect

Lets you lock either the current file or all files.  A locked file will be saved permanently and will never be overwritten.

Slide Show

This option is currently not active.

Thumbnail

Shows thumbnail images of all saved files.  You can use the front chrome buttons to scroll through the files.  Press the orange button to select the highlighted file.

Dash Cams - CDR 810 - Troubleshooting

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Most likely you have the Screen Saver enabled which blanks the display after a designated timeout (see the FAQ regarding Setup Menu Options).  If you press any button the display will turn back on.

Vertical alignment can be adjusted by rotating the lens assembly.  Grab the lens housing and rotate up or down.

Horizontal alignment can be accomplished by adjusting the mount.

If you see a message that the memory card is full, then it will be necessary to delete files from the memory card.  The only reason for the memory card to fill up is if numerous files are marked as “protected”.  A protected file will never be overwritten and will permanently consume memory space.  If enough files are marked as protected, there might not be sufficient room to record new video.

There are only three ways a file can be marked as protected:

If you press the orange button will video is recording, then the current video clip will be marked as protected.  This feature only protects the current video file.If you access the menu from Playback Mode, there is an option to protect files.If the G-sensor detects an impact, then the current video file will be automatically protected.

How to empty the memory card:

NOTE:  If there are any files that you would like to keep, then copy them to a computer before proceeding.

Access the Setup Menu by pressing the MENU button 2 times.  The wrench icon at the top of the display should be highlighted.Scroll down to “Format” and press the orange button.Highlight “OK” and press the orange button.Press the Menu button when formatting is done.The memory has now been cleared and you should be able to record new video.

This can only happen if numerous files are marked as “protected”.  A protected file is permanently saved and will not be deleted.  If enough protected files accumulate, it could eventually fill up all available memory.

There are only three ways to protect a file:

If you press the orange button will video is recording, then the current video clip will be marked as protected.  This feature only protects the current video file.If you access the menu from Playback Mode, there is an option to protect files.If the G-sensor detects an impact, then the current video file will be automatically protected.

What to do:

Empty the memory card.  Refer to the FAQ “The memory card is full”.Avoid manually marking a file as protected unless you really need to save one.If the memory still fills up, then the G-sensor might be triggering due to excessive vibration.  Try reducing the sensitivity or disable the G-sensor.  Refer to the FAQ regarding “Video menu options”.

The only reason for your unit to turn off is if you are operating on internal battery power.

If the battery runs down then the unit will turn off.If Auto-Power-Off is enabled, then the CDR810 will turn off after the appropriate timeout (see the FAQ regarding Setup Menu Options).

Check the battery icon
Look at the icon in the lower-right of the display.  If you see a battery icon, then the unit is running on the internal battery.  It is not getting power from the power cord, and your unit may turn off unexpectedly.

Check the power cord
Make sure that the power cord is fully seated in the CDR810.  Also make sure that the LED is illuminated on the cigarette plug.  If the LED does not light up, then the plug is not getting power from the cigarette socket.  Try removing and reinserting the cigarette plug.

The auto-power-off feature works by monitoring the voltage on the power cord.  If the CDR810 detects that the supply voltage is gone, then it assumes that the engine is turned off and it will automatically turn off after the appropriate timeout.

On some cars, however, the cigarette socket is still live even when the key is out of the ignition.  The CDR810 will always see the supply voltage and it will not know that the engine is off.  Unfortunately on these cars the auto-power-off feature will not work.

While it should be rare for a glitch to occur, it can be easily cleared by pressing the RESET button on the right side the of unit.

Please note, you may use a standard SD card. However, for best video quality, we recommend using Class 6 or Class 10 SD cards.

MicroTalk Radios (FRS/GMRS) - General Questions

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FRS: Family Radio ServiceThe FRS band is a UHF FM radio band between approximately 462 to 467 megahertz.  It comprises 14 channels for personal communication open to the general public.  FRS radios are a great way to stay in touch for activities such as:
CampingCarnivalsCruisesVacations

Although base stations are available, typically these radios are small handheld “walkie-talkies”.  Of the 14 available channels, 7 of them are shared with the GMRS band.

GMRS:  General Mobile Radio Service
GMRS radios are virtually identical to FRS radios.  They too are UHF FM radios operating in the 462 to 467 megahertz range.  Of the 15 available GMRS channels, 7 of them are shared with the FRS band.  Originally intended for business use, the GMRS band has since been opened to the general public.

All current Cobra MicroTalk radios include both the FRS and GMRS bands, for a total of 22 channels.

CTCSS:  Continuous Tone Controlled Squelch System
DCS: Digitally Controlled Squelch

Cobra calls both of these features "Privacy Codes".

Privacy Codes are not extra channels -- rather they are a means for sharing a channel with other people without any annoying interference or cross talk.  Even though there may be other people using the channel, you will only hear transmissions from those people who are using the same Privacy Code as you.

Not all models offer CTCSS and DCS.  For those models that do, there are a total of 38 CTCSS codes and 83 DCS codes to choose from.

Channel 1: 462.5625 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 2: 462.5875 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 3: 462.6125 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 4: 462.6375 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 5: 462.6625 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 6: 462.6875 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 7: 462.7125 MHz, FRS/GMRS

Channel 8: 467.5625 MHz, FRS

Channel 9: 467.5875 MHz, FRS

Channel 10: 467.6125 MHz, FRS

Channel 11: 467.6375 MHz, FRS

Channel 12: 467.6625 MHz, FRS

Channel 13: 467.6875 MHz, FRS

Channel 14: 467.7125 MHz, FRS

Channel 15: 462.55 MHz, GMRS

Channel 16: 462.575 MHz, GMRS

Channel 17: 462.6 MHz, GMRS

Channel 18: 462.625 MHz, GMRS

Channel 19: 462.65 MHz, GMRS

Channel 20: 462.675 MHz, GMRS

Channel 21: 462.7 MHz, GMRS

Channel 22: 462.725 MHz, GMRS

Plug size:   2.5mm (3/32”) stereo plug

Microphone Type:   Electret

The tip is the speaker

The middle contact is the microphone

The shaft is ground

The PTT switch is wired in series with the microphone element.

If the PTT function does not work or is unreliable, place a 2.7K ohm resistor across the microphone element.

This is a question that is best answered by your doctor.  Please let your doctor know that the Cobra GMRS radios have these general specifications:

Maximum transmit power:  up to 4 watts (depending on model)
Transmit frequency range:   462 to 468 megahertz

Microtalk Radios: Troubleshooting

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Please note that the advertised range is only under ideal conditions such as:

-Fresh batteries

-Absolutely no obstructions between the radios (for example communication over water or from mountaintop to mountaintop)

To maximize range, please make sure that the batteries are fully charged.  If your radios use AA size or AAA size batteries, then you can try regular alkaline batteries.

Channels 8 to 14 are locked on low power per FCC regulations, so try using channels 1 to 7 or channels 15 to 22.

On some models you can adjust the transmit power level.  Make sure it is set to HI.

Please note that use inside a building or inside a car will reduce the range.

When you turn on your radio it will perform a display test.  Everything will light up on the display, including the low battery icon.  The display test lasts a couple seconds, after which you will get the normal operating display.

Please ignore the low battery icon during power-up.  After the display test is done you can then see if the low battery icon is showing.  If the batteries are low then the low battery icon will be flashing.

Cobra has used two different types of call signal: analog and digital.  A digital call signal is used on models with VibrAlert, and is necessary in order to activate the vibrate feature.  Models without VibrAlert use an analog call signal.

Digital call signals are not fully compatible with analog call signals.  If your Cobra radio has VibraAlert, then it has a digital call signal that will only work properly with other Cobra VibrAlert models.

Numerous models of Cobra handheld radios have a special feature which prevents accidentally charging alkaline batteries.  If alkaline batteries are charged, they will leak!

To prevent charging alkaline batteries, the radio has a separate charge contact which touches the side of the battery.

Alkaline batteries have a plastic wrapper all the way down, so they will not touch the charge contact and will therefore not charge.  

The issue is that other brands of rechargeable batteries also have a full wrapper, and so they too will not charge.  The solution is to peel the wrapper from the negative end of the battery.  Use a sharp knife to score all the way around, and then peel off the wrapper so that the battery looks like the picture above.  Do it to all the new batteries.

This is due to FCC regulations.

The FCC has set exposure limits on how much RF energy is allowed to be absorbed by your body.  The transmit power must not exceed the SAR limits.  The amount of allowed power will depend on variables such as the transmit frequency, proximity of the antenna, etc.

Typically when a headset is plugged into the radio, the radio is then worn on the belt using the integral belt clip.  This places the antenna right up against your body.  The FCC mandates that we must therefore lower the transmit power in order to stay within allowable exposure limits.

If you need absolute maximum transmit power, you will need to unplug the headset.

International Use of FRS/GMRS Radios

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Yes. Your Cobra GMRS radios are legal for use in the USA, Canada, and Mexico. You can freely bring your GMRS radios into both Canada and Mexico. Enjoy your trip!

No. Most countries in Europe have adopted a different standard known as PMR ("Personal Mobile Radio"). While PMR radios are very similar to your GMRS radios, PMR radios use different frequencies. If you attempt to bring your GMRS radios into Europe, they might get confiscated in customs.

PMR radios are currently approved for use in the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

Cobra manufactures and sells PMR radios and is a leading brand in Europe.  PMR radios are not available in the USA because they are not FCC-approved.  They are only available in European countries where PMR has been approved for use.  Please visit local retailers in those countries.

PMR has been approved in the following countries:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom

Cobra Tag - General Questions

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The Cobra Tag is a small key FOB that helps keep you from losing your valuables.

Attach the Cobra Tag sensor to your keys, purse, computer bag, or any other item you want to protect from loss. The sensor communicates with your smartphone via Bluetooth, and will remind you if you leave your phone or valuables behind. The Cobra Tag is also a two-way finder. Tap the button on the Cobra Tag to ring your smartphone. If you are looking for your Cobra Tag protected item, use the phone’s application to make the Cobra Tag ring. To secure your phones data, the powerful PhoneHalo application can be set to lock your phone when out of range of your tagged item. Never lose your valuables again!

If your smartphone gets separated from the Cobra Tag, both the smartphone and the Cobra Tag will ring.

The free app lets you configure and control the Cobra Tag.

Lets say you’re at a party and you want to leave. You start walking to your car and suddenly the Cobra Tag on your keychain starts to ring. (Thank goodness you were just reminded not to leave your cell phone behind!)

The same thing happens if you have your phone and you get too far from the Cobra Tag. You will be reminded not to leave your keys (or, whatever the Cobra Tag is attached to)!

The BT225 works with Android and Blackberry smartphones.

The BT225 UNI works with Android and Blackberry smartphones, plus these Apple models:

iPhone 3, 4, 4S, 5, iPod, iPad

1. First charge the Tag using the supplied USB cable. When the light turns blue it is fully charged.

2. While the Tag is charging, go to the market/store on your smartphone and download the free app. You can find it by searching for “cobra tag”.

3. Make sure that the Tag is turned on. When you press the button you should see a blue light, which indicates that it is turned on.

4. Access the Bluetooth® in your phone and go through the pairing process just like any other Bluetooth® device.

5. Launch the app.

6. Attach the tag to whatever you want to protect.

IMPORTANT NOTE: When you pair the Tag to Android phones, it may say “Paired but not connected”. This is normal and does not indicate a problem. It means that the Tag is not connected to the audio on your phone, but that is because it is not a Bluetooth® headset and does not need an audio link. The Tag should work fine!

This is normal and does not indicate a problem. It means that the Tag is not connected to the audio on your phone, but that is because it is not a Bluetooth® headset and does not need an audio link. The Tag should work fine!

Battery life under normal use is up to seven days. Please note, however, that if the Tag gets out of range of your phone, it will go into a mode where it is constantly looking for the phone. This mode consumes extra battery power. If your Tag is frequently out of range for extended periods, you can conserve battery power by turning off the Tag when not in use. To turn off your Tag, press and hold the button on the Tag for about 10 seconds until it beeps and the light flashes red three times. To turn it back on, press and hold the button for a few seconds.

Portable Power and JumPacks

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CPP7500 JumPack

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Please be sure to perform the following steps in the listed order.

BEFORE YOU START

Turn off all accessories on the vehicle (headlights, etc.).Look at the car battery and identify the positive (+) terminal.  The red cable is typically the positive terminal, but it is good practice to look for the ‘+’ sign on the battery next to the battery post.

JUMP START PROCEDURE

The jumper cables should be unplugged from the JumPack. Attach the jumper cables directly to the battery:  red clamp to the positive  (+)  terminal and black clamp to the negative  (–)  terminal.Now plug the jumper cables into the JumPack.  The connector will fit only one way.Set the JumPack in a location where it will not fall.  Make sure that the JumPack and the jumper cables will be clear of any moving parts (radiator fan, pulleys, etc.).You may now try starting the engine.

WARNING:  Do not crank the engine for more than 3 seconds.  Doing so can cause the JumPack to overheat.  Allow a 1-minute cooling time between starting attempts.

AFTER THE ENGINE STARTS

Immediately after the engine starts, unplug the jumper cables from the JumPack.  Disconnect the jumper cables from the battery.

Don’t forget to recharge your JumPack so that it will be ready when needed.

1. The JumPack might not be fully charged.  Press the button on the JumPack to test the battery condition.  All four LEDs should illuminate.

2. There might be a bad connection with the battery cables.  Try the following:

-Unplug the jumper cables from the JumPack.

-Wiggle the battery clamps to help make good contact.

-Plug the jumper cables back into the JumPack.

-Try starting the engine.

3. If the battery in your car is near 100 percent dead, or if the battery is defective, then it can suck too much power from the jump starter so that there is not enough power to start the engine.  Do the dash lights come on?  Does the radio work?  If everything is dead then you may need something bigger than a portable jump starter.

4. If the engine cranks but refuses to start, then there might be a mechanical problem with your car that requires servicing.

5. There is a non-replaceable fuse in the jumper cables for your JumPack.  If the fuse is blown then the JumPack will not work.  The fuse can blow if the cables are accidentally shorted together, or if your car draws too much power from the JumPack.  It is easy to check for a blown fuse using a voltmeter.  Simply plug the jumper cables into the JumPack and check the voltage at the battery clamps.  If you do not get any voltage then most likely the fuse is blown and the jumper cable assembly will need to be replaced.

To maintain a full charge on your JumPack, it is recommended to charge it every few months.

If you keep the JumPack in your home, leave the charger plugged in all the time. The internal charging circuit will maintain a full charge on the battery without any risk of overcharging.

TO CHECK THE STATUYS OF THE INTERNAL BATTERY

Press and release the button.  If the battery is fully charged then all four LEDs will illuminate.

TO TURN ON THE LIGHT

Press and hold the button.  After a few seconds the light should turn on.

After the light is on:

1. Pressing the button will cause the light to strobe.

2. Pressing the button a second time will cause the light to flash an S-O-S signal.

3. Pressing the button a third time will turn off the light.

To turn on the light, press and hold the button on the JumPack. After a few seconds the light should illuminate. If the light does not turn on, then the battery might be dead. Try charging the JumPack.

Jump Starter Models: CJS 50, CJI 150, CJIC 250, CJIC 350, CJIC 550

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WARNING:  When connecting and disconnecting the battery cables, always make sure that the jump starter is turned off (big yellow knob in the OFF position). 

Please be sure to perform the following steps in the listed order.

BEFORE YOU START

-Turn off all accessories on the vehicle (headlights, etc.).

-Look at the car battery and identify the positive (+) terminal.  The red cable is typically the positive terminal, but it is good practice to look for the ‘+’ sign on the battery next to the battery post.

JUMP START PROCEDURE

Turn the big yellow knob on the jump starter to the OFF position.

1. Place the jump starter near the battery.  Pick a location where the jump starter will be stable.  You do not want it falling down when the car starts!  The jump starter does not have to be standing upright.  It is OK to lay it down.

2. Make sure that the jump starter and the jumper cables will be clear of any moving parts (radiator fan, pulleys, etc.).

3. Attach the red clamp to the positive  (+)  terminal on the battery.

4. Attach the black clamp to the negative  (–)  terminal on the battery.

5. Make sure that the green “Connected Correctly” LED is illuminated on the front of the jump starter.  If the red “Reverse Polarity Alarm” is illuminated, then the cables are backwards.  Do not proceed until you see the green “Connected Correctly” LED.

6. Turn the big yellow knob on the jump starter to the ON position.

7. Try starting the engine.

DO NOT crank the engine for more than 5 seconds.  Doing so can cause the jump starter to overheat.  Allow a 3-minute cooling time between starting attempts.

AFTER THE ENGINE STARTS

1.Turn the big yellow knob on the jump starter to the OFF position.

2. Remove the black clamp.  Attach it to the storage location on the side of the jump starter.

3. Remove the red clamp.  Attach it to the storage location on the side of the jump starter.

There are four basic possibilities why your car did not start:

1. The jump starter might not be fully charged. Press the battery test button on the jump starter.  All four LEDs should illuminate.

2. There might be a bad connection with the battery cables.  Try the following:

a. Turn the big yellow knob on the jump starter to the OFF position.

b. Wiggle the battery clamps to help make good contact.

c. Turn the big yellow knob on the jump starter to the ON position.

d. Try starting the engine.

3. If the battery in your car is near 100 percent dead, or if the battery is defective, then it can suck too much power from the jump starter so that there is not enough power to start the engine.  Do the dash lights come on?  Does the radio work?  If everything is dead then you may need something bigger than a portable jump starter.

4. If the engine cranks but refuses to start, then there might be a mechanical problem with your car that requires servicing.

To maintain a full charge on your jump starter, it is recommended to charge it once per month.

If you keep the jump starter in your home, leave the charger plugged in all the time.  The internal charging circuit will maintain a full charge on the battery without any risk of overcharging.

The cigarette socket in your car does not supply a properly regulated voltage suitable for charging your jump starter.  Only the AC charger should be used for charging the jump starter.

The battery meter is a bar graph.  If the battery is low, then only 1 or 2 of the LEDs will light up.

When the battery is full, all 4 LEDs will light up.  This is normal.

If only 1 or 2 LEDs illuminate, then try charging the jump starter overnight.

The cigarette socket is fused.  Please check the fuse and replace if blown.  Fuses can be obtained from local auto stores.

Depending on the model, the fuse is located either on the left side or on the right side, where the battery cable is stored.  It may be necessary to pull out the battery cable in order to see the fuse.

Fuse type:  15 amp automotive mini blade fuse

The USB output is fused.  Please check the fuse and replace if blown.  Fuses can be obtained from local auto stores.

Depending on the model, the fuse is located either on the left side or on the right side, where the battery cable is stored.  It may be necessary to pull out the battery cable in order to see the fuse.

Fuse type:  15 amp automotive mini blade fuse

The light is fused.  Please check the fuse and replace if blown.  Fuses can be obtained from local auto stores.

Depending on the model, the fuse is located either on the left side or on the right side, where the battery cable is stored.  It may be necessary to pull out the battery cable in order to see the fuse.

Fuse type:  15 amp automotive mini blade fuse

The air compressor is fused.  Please check the fuse and replace if blown.  Fuses can be obtained from local auto stores.

Depending on the model, the fuse is located either on the left side or on the right side, where the battery cable is stored.  It may be necessary to pull out the battery cable in order to see the fuse.

Fuse type:  15 amp automotive mini blade fuse

The compressor output is high pressure but low volume.  It can take up to 10-15 minutes to top off a car tire, depending on how low the tire is. 

Please note that the compressor might not have sufficient capacity to inflate a completely flat tire.

NOTE:  After 10 minutes of continuous operation, allow the compressor to cool down for 10 minutes before resuming.

Power Inverters - General Questions

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This is normal.  The fan will only run when needed, if the inverter starts to get hot.

The voltage from your inverter is a little different than the voltage in your home.  The voltage in your home is called a “sine wave”, while the voltage from the inverter is a “modified sine wave”.  Because of this difference, you will need a  meter that measures “true RMS” voltage.  If your meter does not measure “true RMS”, then it will read low.

If it does not say “true RMS” on the front of your meter, then it is not a true RMS meter and it will read low.

Outlet testers are intended for testing normal utility power in your home.  With normal utility power, the neutral and ground are connected together in your fuse box.  Outlet testers are designed under this assumption.

The outlet on your power inverter, however, is not configured exactly the same as in your home.  It is normal for an outlet tester to show an open ground. This does not indicate a problem with your inverter.

Your power inverter is not weatherproof, so it needs to be installed where it will be protected from heat and moisture.  Keep a minimum 1 inch clearance around the inverter for ventilation.

The inverter can be mounted in any position -- horizontal, vertical, or upside-down.

For maximum performance and to achieve rated capacity, four battery cables must be used.

If you decide to use only 2 cables, then the maximum load must be limited to 1670 watts.                 

Cable size:  #4
Maximum length: 12 feet

If the battery voltage gets too low, your inverter will sound a low-voltage alarm.  This can happen for any of the following reasons:

-The battery is low and needs to be charged

-A loose connection with the battery cables

-A loose connection in the cigarette socket (if you are using a cigarette power cord)

-The battery cables to the inverter are too small

-The appliance is pulling excessive power from the battery

If you get low voltage alarm then try running the engine so that the alternator is supplying extra power.  If you get the alarm even with the alternator running, then check all the cable connections.  There might be a loose connection somewhere.

If your inverter has more than one AC outlet, the full inverter power is available from any of the outlets.

Marine Radios - General Questions

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It is difficult to provide a number, because range will be affected by the following factors:

Transmit power: Higher transmit power gets better range. Transmit powers up to 25 watts are allowed.

Length of the antenna: Short antennas will get shorter range.  Long antennas will get longer range.

Height of the antenna: The higher the antenna is mounted, the better the range.

Antenna tuning: Having a properly tuned antenna will maximize your range. Checking the SWR of the antenna will identify how well your antenna is tuned to the marine band.

Atmospheric conditions: Atmospheric conditions can affect radio propagation. If conditions are just right, there are times when you can transmit 100 miles or more. On other occasions you may be limited to only 10 miles.  Although these extremes occur infrequently, it does serve to illustrate the effects of atmospheric conditions.

Your location: Your location will also influence the range. For example if you are located on an inland waterway where buildings and trees can block your signal, you will get less range than if you where in the middle of the ocean. With a handheld radio your range will vary depending on whether you are inside the cabin (worst range) or standing on the highest portion of the deck (best range).

Battery condition (handheld models):  Low batteries will cause your transmit power to drop, which will reduce your range.

The combination and severity of the above factors will determine your range. Several of these factors can change on a day-to-day basis.

If we were to eliminate all the negative effects, a properly setup mobile radio transmitting 25 watts will communicate as follows:

-A powerboat communicating to another powerboat: approximately 20 miles.

-A powerboat communicating toa  well-equipped shore station: approximately 50 miles.

-On a sailboat with the antenna mounted at the top of the mast, communicating to another sailboat: approximately 40 miles.

-On a sailboat with the antenna mounted at the top of the mast, communicating to a well-equipped shore station: approximately 80 miles.

Handheld radios will communicate as follows:

-A 5 watt handheld will communicate approximately 7 miles to another handheld, or approximately 20 miles to a well-equipped shore station

-A 2 watt handheld will communicate approximately 5 miles to another handheld, or approximately 15 miles to a well-equipped shore station.

You will need a marine antenna, designed for the marine band. A CB antenna will not work. For availability, check with local boat dealers and marinas. Make sure it says on the package that the antenna is for the marine band.

Please note that your Cobra marine radio has 3 different channel maps:

USA Channel Map – this channel map provides access to channels commonly used in the USA.

Canadian Channel Map – this channel map provides access to channels commonly used in Canada.

International Channel Map – this channel map provides access to channels commonly used in international waters.

If you cannot access a particular channel then most likely you need to change the channel map.  Please refer to the owners manual on how to change the channel map.

Please note that certain channels are intended for simplex operation, while others are intended for duplex operation.

SIMPLEX – uses the same frequency for both transmit and receive

DUPLEX – the transmit and receive frequencies are not the same (primarily for commercial use)

Your Cobra marine radio only operates in simplex mode.  Be sure to use only simplex channels.  These channels are for simplex operation:

1A, 3A, 4A, 5A, 6, 7A, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18A, 19A, 20A, 21A, 22A, 23A, 61A, 62A, 63A, 64A, 65A, 66A, 67, 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78A, 79A, 80A, 81A, 82A, 83A, 84A, 85A, 86A, 87A, 88A

The following models can use an external antenna:

Models:  MR HH300, 325, 400, 415, 425

The antenna connector on your radio is a type “SMA female”. 

This is the adapter you will need:  SMA male to SO239 adapter cable

One end of the adapter should have an SMA male, which will attach to the radio.  The other end of the adapter should have an SO239, which will mate to the PL259 on the antenna cable.

Models:  MR HH350, 450, 500, 600

The antenna connector on your radio is a type “SMA male”.

This is the adapter you will need:  SMA female to SO239 adapter cable

One end of the adapter should have an SMA female, which will attach to the radio.  The other end of the adapter should have an SO239, which will mate to the PL259 on the antenna cable.

IMPORTANT NOTE

To minimize mechanical stress on the antenna connector, it is important to get an adapter cable.  One end of the cable will attach to the radio and the other end will attach to the antenna cable.  Get an adapter cable with the appropriate connectors (as described above).

Noise can be caused by a variety of sources, such as:

Atmospheric noise

Engine noise (from the ignition system or from the alternator)

Any kind of electric motor

Other electrical devices in the boat (navigation system, sonar device, power inverter, etc.)

Local interference (from a nearby factory or business, etc.)

FIRST IDENTIFY THE TYPE OF NOISE

Turn off the motor and all other electrical devices.  Be sure that all devices are really off.  If necessary, turn off the "main disconnect" to kill power for the entire boat, then temporarily run power wires from the marine radio directly to the battery.Listen to the radio.If the noise sounds the same, then it is either atmospheric noise or local interference.  Try changing your location to confirm whether it is from local interference.If there is less noise, then there is electrical noise coming from the boat.

WHAT TO DO

If the noise is coming from the boat, then it can be reduced or eliminated.  Refer to the instructions later in this text.

If it is atmospheric noise, then there is nothing you can do.  There will always be a certain amount of atmospheric noise, which can vary from day to day.  It is not possible to filter atmospheric noise.  To help maximize range:

-Use the longest antenna possible.

-Mount the antenna as high as possible.

Although these steps will not reduce atmospheric noise, they will help make received signals stronger so that they can be heard above the noise.  When you are not receiving a signal, slowly turn up the squelch just until the noise stops.

ELIMINATING ELECTRICAL NOISE

First identify how the noise is entering the marine radio.

Disconnect the antenna cable from the radio and see if you still hear the noise. 

If the noise stops, then the noise is entering through the antenna system.If you still hear the noise, then the noise is entering through the power wires.

NOISE ENTERING THROUGH POWER WIRES

Try another source of power.  The cleanest source of power is directly from the battery.  You may need to use shielded cable to prevent noise pickup from the ignition system.  If you connect directly to the battery then it is recommended to use a 10 amp fuse right at the battery.  This will protect the wiring. Try installing a noise filter on the power leads, as close as possible to the radio.  Use a good quality filter rated 10 amps or higher.

NOISE ENTERING THROUGH ANTENNA SYSTEM

Unfortunately there are no filters available to filter noise that enters through the antenna.  The best course of action is one of prevention – stop the noise from getting to the radio.  The best options are:

Try moving the antenna cable around, to see if it affects noise pickup.  If you notice a difference, then adjust the routing to minimize noise pickup.If possible, try relocating the antenna.Identify the source of the noise and filter the noise at the source so that it does not radiate into the marine radio (as described in the next section).

IF YOU ARE STILL HAVING TROUBLE

If the above recommendations are not helping, then it will be necessary to filter the noise at the source.  You will need to identify the source of the noise and put a filter on the power leads of the offending device. 

Start with all other devices in the boat turned off, then turn on each device one-at-a-time.  When you hear the noise, you have found the offending device.  Try installing a noise filter on the power leads to the device, as close as possible to the device.  You could also try relocating the device.  You might consider contacting the manufacturer of the device for recommendations.

If you only hear the noise when the engine is running, then it is either ignition noise, alternator noise, or electric fuel pump noise.

If the noise is a high-pitched whine that changes with engine speed, then it is the alternator. A filter on the alternator would be the solution.If the noise is a high-pitched whine that does not change with engine speed, then it is most likely an electric fuel pump (if your boat has an electric fuel pump).  Placing filters on the power leads to the fuel pump should help.If it is a low-pitched rumble that changes with engine speed, then the noise is coming from the ignition system.  Try replacing the spark plug wires with good-quality noise suppression wires.  You can also contact the engine manufacturer for recommendations.

If your handheld radio is not operating properly, the following describes how to reset the radio to factory settings.

MR HH90, MR HH100, MR HH200

Hold both the MODE button and the WX/UIC button, then power on.Continue holding the buttons until the display test is done.

MR HH125

Hold both the DW button and the MEM/ESC button, then power on.Continue holding the buttons until the display test is done.The display should show “IN”.Power off & back on.

MR HH300, MR HH400

Hold both the WX/UIC button and the HI/LO button, then power on.Continue holding the buttons for a few seconds, then release.

MR HH325, MR HH330, MR HH350, MR HH425, MR HH450, MR HH475, MR HH500

Hold both the H-M-L button and the Tri-Watch button, then power on.Continue holding the buttons until the display test is done.

1. Can the firmware be updated?

Yes, and it's free.

Latest version:

For U.S.  V2.12 Improves Navigation Feature.

For E.U.  V1.12 Improves Navigation Feature

Users in the U.S.A. and Canada should send their radios to Cobra Factory Service 6500 W. Cortland St. Chicago, IL 60707 with a note indicating they would like to have their firmware updated. Users outside the U.S. & Canada must contact their local Cobra dealer for more info.

2. How does the Navigation Feature work?

HH600 Navigation

This radio features a NAV function that allows the user to perform basic Navigation options such as:
• Create (NEW) Waypoints by typing Latitude & Longitude information.
• Navigate to saved Waypoints (WPT) and Marked locations (MRK).
• Navigate to (DSC) Distressed Call locations that included GPS coordinates.
• Edit or Delete Waypoints listed in the Waypoint Directory (DIR).

NEW
To create a NEW Waypoint by typing Latitude & Longitude information:
1. Press the MORE soft key until the NAV soft key option appears on the screen.
2. Press the NAV soft key then press the NEW soft key.
3. Use the Up/Down and the ENTER soft keys to spell your Waypoint name.
4. Use the Up/Down and the ENTER soft keys to enter the LAT: LONG: information.
5. Choose a Waypoint Number 1 to 99 for reference during Navigation.
6. Press the ENTER soft key to Save your Waypoint information or EXIT to cancel.

Note: Pressing the Enter soft key repeatedly will advance the cursor to the next character. If you skipped or wish to edit a letter or number use the back symbol (<) to move the cursor back to previous character.

NAV

To NAVIGATE or GO to a Waypoint:
1. Press the MORE soft key until the NAV soft key option appears on the screen.
2. Press the NAV soft key to access the Navigation menu.
3. Choose your destination from WPT list or enter a NEW one.
4. A dot representing the selected Waypoint will appear within the compass area and your Bearing, Speed, Distance and Waypoint number will be listed on the left side of the screen.
5. Start moving your vessel in the direction of the Waypoint to get updated Speed and Distance readings.
6. As your distance to the destination Waypoint decreases, the Dot will get closer to the center of the compass.
7. Once the Dot reaches the center of the compass, you have reached the general area of your Waypoint.

Note: Your vessel MUST be moving and the radio MUST have a good GPS signal lock in order to show the correct heading/direction in relation to the waypoint.
Note: For best GPS accuracy, make sure the Power Save is OFF and the SBAS (Satellite Based Augmentation System) is ON under the GPS menu.

 

DIR
The Waypoint Directory allows the user to Edit or Delete Waypoints.

To Edit or Delete Waypoints:
1. Press the MORE soft key until the NAV soft key option appears on the screen.
2. Press the NAV soft key to access the Navigation menu.
3. Press the DIR soft key to access the Waypoint Directory.
4. Scroll through the list and press the ENTER soft key to select a Waypoint.
5. Select Edit or Delete then press the ENTER soft key to save your changes or press the Exit soft key to cancel.


MARK
Allows the user to MARK his current location as a (MRK) Waypoint. The radio automatically saves Latitude & Longitude information to (WPT) Waypoint list.

To MARK a location:
1. Press the MORE soft key until the MARK soft key option appears on the screen.
2. Press the MARK soft key.
3. Use the Up/Down and the ENTER soft keys to enter a Waypoint name.
4. The radio will save the current location information to the (WPT) Waypoint directory using the MRK prefix.

NoteFor this feature to work properly the radio MUST have a GPS signal lock.

Radar/Laser Detectors - General Questions

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Radar detectors are illegal only in Virginia, Washington DC, and most parts of Canada.  They are also illegal in all 50 states for commercial drivers, such as truck drivers and taxi drivers.

If you are not a commercial driver, and you are not in Virginia or Washington DC or Canada, then it is perfectly legal to use a radar detector.

In flat, open conditions the range is at least 2 miles.  Please note that road conditions (hills and curves) can affect the range.

First make sure that the cigarette plug is making good contact in the socket.  Try reinserting the plug a few times.

You can also check the fuse by unscrewing the tip of the cigarette plug.  There is a spring inside, be careful not to lose the spring.  The fuse size is 1 amp.  Replacement fuses can be found at Radio Shack.

If the problem persists, then please try a new power cord.

Most likely this is due to a broken wire inside the power cord.  Please try a new power cord.

Most likely this is due to a short in the power cord.  Please try a new power cord.

Your detector will only detect a police car if the car has a radar gun, and if the gun is turned on.

If the police car does not have a radar gun, or if the radar gun is not turned on, then there are no signals for your detector to receive.

Please make sure that your detector is mounted at the windshield, and that it has a clear view down the road.  Make sure it is not blocked by a windshield wiper.

If your detector has IntelliMute, then try turning off the IntelliMute.

Please note that shorter range can occur if the officer is hiding behind a hill, around a curve, of if the officer is using an instant-on radar gun.

In today’s busy electronic world, there are numerous sources of stray microwave signals.  Some of these sources are security systems, cell phone towers, and automatic door openers at supermarkets.

Most door openers at supermarkets operate right in the radar band, so they are actually a good way of testing your detector.  You will typically get a warning when driving by.

Most false alerts will occur in the city, and you can turn on City Mode to help reduce false alerts.

There can be several reasons why a perfectly functioning radar detector does not provide an adequate alert: The police car did not have an active radar/laser gun In order to alert, the police car must have a radar or laser gun, and the gun must be turned on. Just because a police car is on the side of the road does not mean it has a radar gun. And if you see a radar gun, it might not be turned on at the moment. Police did not use radar/laser to clock you The police may be using a non-radar method of clocking speed, such as VASCAR. With VASCAR, an airplane or helicopter measures the time it takes a vehicle to pass 2 markers on the road. A timer is started when you pass the first marker, and then the timer is stopped when you reach the second marker. Your speed can be calculated based on the time it takes to travel between the markers. The pilot then radios the information to a police car. Since no radar or laser is involved with VASCAR, it cannot be detected by a radar detector. Installation Issues The radar detector needs a clear, unobstructed view down the road. The detector should be mounted at the windshield, and there should be no obstructions (such as windshield wipers) in front of the detector. The detector also needs to be level. This is accomplished by bending the mounting bracket as needed until the detector is level. For best results against laser detection, mount the detector as low as possible on the windshield. Do not mount the detector behind any window tint, otherwise laser detection can be severely reduced. Issues with the windshield Your vehicle may have an electric defroster built into the windshield or a special coating on the windshield. Both of these items can block radar and/or laser signals. To check whether your vehicle has any of these, please inquire at your auto dealer or the auto manufacturer. Police used “instant-on” radar to clock you With instant-on radar, the officer waits until your vehicle is very close and then he turns on his radar gun. Your detector will not alert until you are right on top of them. The best way to detect instant-on radar is to detect the officer clocking someone ahead of you. If you are the only car on the road, be careful! Issues with the local terrain The officer may have been positioned over a hill or around a curve. Curves and hills will reduce radar range. Use caution when approaching curves and hills. Intelli-Mute was turned on On detectors with Intelli-Mute, the Intelli-Mute may have been engaged. This can result in only 1 beep which may have gone unnoticed. Try turning Intelli-Mute off.

Modern radar detectors have numerous "bands" of operation. Each band corresponds to a specific frequency range or function. Following is a description of the bands available in Cobra radar detectors. X BAND The frequency range of the X band is 10.475 to 10.575 gigahertz. The X band was the first microwave radar band introduced. Almost all false alerts occur on the X band, because there are many stray signals in this frequency range. Some examples are automatic door openers at supermarkets, some security systems, and microwave transmission towers. K BAND The frequency range of the K band is 24.0 to 24.25 gigahertz. This is the second microwave radar band introduced by radar gun manufacturers. It is rare to get a false alert on K band, but automatic door openers are currently being manufactured that operate in the K band. Ka BAND The frequency range of the Ka band is 33.4 to 36.0 gigahertz. This is the newest microwave radar band. It is rare to get a false alert on Ka band. Ku Band The frequency range of the Ku band is 13.4 to 13.47 gigahertz. The Ku band is being used in Europe. Although the FCC has allocated this band for law enforcement use, currently no radar guns in the USA operate on the Ku band. This may change in the future. Not all Cobra models can detect the Ku band. LASER Laser is light, so this is not a microwave radar band. The laser guns operate in the infrared region, which is invisible to your eye. The infrared region is extremely high in frequency, so it is typically described in terms of wavelength. Cobra radar detectors detect in the range of 860 to 960 nanometers. Cobra's newest models can distinguish between the different laser guns currently in use by law enforcement, so we have split the laser band into separate bands. Older Cobra detectors cannot distinguish between the different laser guns, but they will still provide an alert. It is extremely rare to get a false alert on laser. POP Mode POP mode is not a separate band. Rather, it is a special mode of operation. When the officer uses POP mode, the radar gun sends out a very short pulse. The pulse is so short that most radar detectors will not provide an alert. Typically the officer cannot write a ticket using POP mode, because it is not 100% reliable. But they will use it to sample your speed, and then decide whether to clock you in the normal way. Only a small percentage of radar guns offer POP mode. Higherend Cobra radar detectors can detect the POP signal. VG2 / SPECTRE The VG2 and Spectre guns are special devices used by law enforcement to identify the presence of a radar detector. It looks like a radar gun, but it does not measure speed. It tells the officer if you are using a radar detector. It works because all radar detectors leak a small amount of signal. Radar detectors are currently illegal in Virginia, the District of Columbia, and most parts of Canada. Radar detectors are also illegal in all 50 states for commercial drivers (truck drivers, taxi drivers, etc.). If the above does not apply to you, then you don't have to worry about being detected. All current Cobra radar detectors incorporate special circuitry so that they are invisible to the VG2 gun and to Spectre I. The above bands are all detection methods in use by law enforcement. The following bands are not for law enforcement, they provide safety information. SAFETY ALERT Designed by Cobra, Safety Alert is a system for alerting motorists to emergency vehicles or safety hazards. It requires a transmitter installed on the emergency vehicle. For radar detectors not equipped with Safety Alert, they will provide a K band warning. The motorist will then slow down and look around, taking notice of the emergency vehicle. For Cobra detectors, it will provide a Safety Alert warning, notifying you that an emergency vehicle is nearby. Safety Alert transmitters may also be present at railroad crossings and construction zones. Not all emergency vehicles are using Safety Alert. Each local municipality decides for themselves. STROBE ALERT Many cities have been using a special sensor mounted on traffic lights, which detects a special strobe light on emergency vehicles. When an emergency vehicle approaches the intersection, the lights turn red for all directions. This stops all traffic to help prevent accidents with the emergency vehicle. The newest Cobra radar detectors can detect the special strobe light, and warn you of an approaching emergency vehicle. Not all emergency vehicles are equipped with the special strobe light.

It is extremely difficult to maintain accurate information on radar use in other countries. Not only is it difficult to determine the frequencies in use, but even more difficult is determining when changes occur. It is almost impossible to maintain up-to-date information on all the changes that occur throughout the world. For this reason, any Cobra radar detectors used outside the United States are sold "as-is", with no guarantee of compatibility with radar systems in the destination country. Compatibility has been verified for use only within the United States and Canada. Following are the frequency bands for Cobra radar detectors. We recommend that you try to determine the frequencies in use in your country, to verify that they fall within our range of detection. X Band: 10.475 to 10.575 gigahertz Ku Band: 13.4 to 13.47 gigahertz K Band: 24.00 to 24.25 gigahertz Ka Band: 33.4 to 36.0 gigahertz Laser: 860 to 960 nanometers Note: All models have the X, K, Ka, and Laser bands. Only some models support the Ku Band.

To hardwire a radar detector to the fuse block, it is highly recommended to purchase our part number RA-PSC-B. This is a special power cord just for hardwiring our radar detectors. The cord is approximately 10 feet long. It has a radar connector on one end, and has bare wires and a fuse on the other end. The polarity of the wires is marked. Using this cord makes installation much easier. The polarity of the connector is center-tip-positive. If you do not purchase the hardwire cord, then you must cut the cigarette plug off the standard power cord. Then open the cigarette plug and see which wire color goes to the fuse. This is the (+) wire. Since the fuse was in the cigarette plug, you should install a fuse holder on the (+) wire. The fuse holder should be at the end of the cable, so that it will be near the power source (typically the fuse box). Remove the fuse from the cigarette plug and install it in the fuse holder. Radio Shack sells a suitable fuse holder, part number 270-1281. Installation: Please read the note following these instructions. 1. Connect the fused wire to a fuse in the fuse box. The fuse for the radio is recommended. To connect the wire to a fuse, it is recommended to use a “fuse tap” which can be found at Radio Shack and local auto stores. A fuse tap makes it easy to tap power from a fuse. You can connect the fuse tap to either side of the fuse – it does not matter. 2. Plug the cable into the radar detector and turn on the detector. 3. Turn on the ignition. 4. Touch the other wire to various screws under the dash. When the detector turns on, you have found a ground screw. Attach the wire to this screw. 5. Run the cable to the detector, avoiding the brake and gas pedals. This completes installation. NOTE: The above instructions are for negative-ground electrical systems. More than 99% of all vehicles are negative-ground. If you are unsure, ask your local car dealer. If your vehicle is positive-ground, then you must connect the un-fused wire to the fuse box, and connect the fused wire to a ground screw.

A VG2 gun is a special device that police can use to identify the presence of a radar detector. It looks like a radar gun, but it does not detect speed. It detects radar detectors. All radio receivers emit a small amount of radio waves. This property is inherent with radio receivers. The same is true of radar detectors, as they too are a radio receiver (microwave receiver). The VG2 gun looks for the radio wave leakage from radar detectors, and can thereby identify if a vehicle is using a radar detector. Radar detectors are illegal in Virginia, The District of Columbia, and most parts of Canada. Radar detectors are also illegal for commercial drivers in all 50 states. If the above does not apply to you, then you need not worry about VG2. Most modern radar detectors incorporate circuitry to be invisible to the VG2 gun, and are therefore "undetectable". It is rare to get a false alert on VG2. Most false alerts occur when another radar detector is nearby, within about 5 car lengths. Spectre is a newer model, made by a different manufacturer. It works in a similar manner to the VG2 gun.