Many people have been buying the cheap little dual band Baofeng UV-3R handheld radios from China. Some people have been pulling them apart, such as Fabrice, F4AVI, who has discovered that it is really quite a state of the art radio.
Fabrice found that the VHF/UHF transceiver functionality is provided by an RDA Microelectronics RDA1846 chip. This is a single chip fully DSP based transceiver capable of covering 134-174, 200-250 and 400-500MHz and supports CTCSS, CDCSS and DTMF with an 8dBm on-board PA. The Band 2 broadcast FM receiver uses an RDA5802E chip, also from RDA Microelectronics, which is a single chip broadcast FM stereo tuner. The UV-3R doesn’t cover the US 220MHz band, of course, nor is the FM broadcast audio in stereo. But future models might well do.
Some buyers of the Boafeng have experienced minor issues with their radios that suggest the quality control is not all it could be. Still, it is interesting to see innovative designs coming out of China. One can only wonder what next?