The purpose of this article is to give a general overview of the ID-880H and to provide a little insight into information that is available to assist you with programming this radio. It would take way too much space in a blog article to give detailed instructions on how to program each section of the radio. So the next best thing is to inform you of resources that are already available to help you with the process.
The ICOM ID-880H is a fully functional 2 meter and 70 cm mobile Transceiver capable of 50 watts output. This radio will do FM analog, Digital Voice and Slow Speed Digital Data Modes out of the box with no add-on boards. The radio will also receive WFM and AM. The 880 is also fully capable of sending and receiving DPRS using a 3rd party GPS Receiver. The ID-880H has a detachable, magnetic head for those who want to remotely install the radio.
*The Id-880H has 1000 Regular memory Channels and two Call Channels.
*In addition there are 25 pairs of Scan Edge Memories.
*The radio also has 26 Memory Banks, A-Z. You can group up to 100 Memory channels in each of the 26 Memory Banks.
*That’s allot of memory and the various Memory Banks allow you to theme your groups for specific use or need.
*The ID-880H also allows you to store up to 60 UR calls for easy access to link to your favorite Repeaters and Reflectors without
having to manually punch them in each time.
Ok so where are these resources that can help me program all this stuff in and tell me which buttons to push and knobs to twist? The first thing to do with your new ID-880H manual is to skim over the parts that tell you where to hook in the coax and what each of the buttons are for. Then carefully place the manual back in its plastic cover and store it away in the box, so that it stays new and fresh for that day when you decide to sell the radio. You can brag about having the original manual, box and non-smoking environment things to get a better price for the rig. You can see that I don’t particularly put much faith in the manual as a true users guide to operating the radio.
The next step is to purchase a “Nifty Mini-Manual for the ID-880H. This and hoards of other manuals by Nifty are available at http://www.niftyaccessories.com. The Nifty Mini-Manual will carefully and methodically walk you through each and every menu and programming aspect of the radio. The Manual is an 8.5×5.5 inch, 23 page manual professionally bound on water proof cardstock paper. The manual is a life saver and makes programming as simple as 1, 2, 3. I have to say that I did not find it possible to get intimately comfortable with programming the ID-880H until I purchased the Nifty Manual and went step by step through the process.
Having said that about the Nifty Manual, I want to put in a plug for programming software. If you are entering multiple frequencies and memory channels you will want to set yourself up with programming software and the proper cable. I recommend the RT Systems software which can be found at http://www.rtsystemsinc.com/index.cfm. RT systems has the software and programming cable for all D-STAR radios and most others as well. Some folks are also having great success with the free ICOM software which is available from the ICOM website for the ID-880H. You will still need to purchase the programming cable from ICOM or build one yourself. I have used both the ICOM and RT Systems Software and find that the RT Systems Software is much better and extremely user friendly.