I saw on YouTube that some software, with another brand transceiver, can command the transceiver to scan a range of frequencies and display a running waterfall display of scanned results.

Can such a setup work with a Baofeng UV-5RE Plus transceiver?

  • $\begingroup$ Have you looked into RTL-SDR radios? They are very inexpensive and provide the waterfall display with the SDR# software. Then you could use your baofeng to tune anything interesting that it finds. If it is in-band in relation to your license, you can also transmit. $\endgroup$
    – SDsolar
    Commented May 3, 2017 at 3:03
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, I used RTL-SDR and it works well. $\endgroup$
    – EEd
    Commented May 4, 2017 at 9:05

3 Answers 3


No the UV-5R does have a programming cable but it does not do any more that retrieve/store information to the radio. It is possible to build a small device that will listen to the audio output of the radio, send audio to the radio and enable transmit. This however won't allow you to change the frequency on the radio, or any settings "live" to accomplish what you've asked.

  • $\begingroup$ Anything more needed to make this the accepted answer? $\endgroup$ Commented May 8, 2016 at 2:30

To interface the radio to a computer you will have to

Purchase a microphone for the radio and disassemble it, 
noting which wire do what: Mic/PTT/Speaker

Next you'll need

Two female stereo jacks
Two 600 ohm audio transformers
Two male to male stereo cords

Finally: Wire the microphone cord the transformers and the transformers to the jacks, plug the cables into your computer sound card. Enable VOX on the radio and have fun.

FYI: I am a HAM, 20 years.

I purchased a GT3-TP, Baofeng UV-5 by a different name, with charging stand, DC cord, programming cable, and hand microphone, for 35 dollars.

Didn't expect much but when it arrived I assembled it, programmed in the local repeater and walked outside then hit the PTT: 94 miles, that is where my local repeater is and it works fine!

My 420 dollar Yaesu handheld sometimes works, this 35 dollars always works with good reports.

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    – SDsolar
    Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 0:10

No, these radios are dirt cheap and quite frankly are made quite poorly. You'll never see pc control on such a cheap radio.

The only way it's ever been done on one of these 'ricebox' radios is to remove the cpu and build your own interface.

  • $\begingroup$ I don't think such a setup would be very limited by the transceiver, as long as it can send data to the PC. There are programming cables available for the transceiver in question, so it should just be a matter of getting the right software on the PC. I don't see how the CPU of the transceiver would influence much, except perhaps the data transfer rate, which should be usable by a PC with proper software regardless of how fast/slow it is. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 20, 2015 at 1:15

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