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How to manually program the Baofeng UV-5R from the keypad

Baofeng UV-5R-2.jpgThe Baofeng UV-5R is one of the most popular dual band handheld two way radios on the market worldwide. It's compact, feature packed, and very inexpensive. For many users who are new to programming portables, it is also one of the most challenging to program, primarily due to a poorly written user manual and an all but complete lack of support from its manufacturer, Baofeng.

Fortunately, there are some helpful resources available from a global community of UV-5R enthusiasts, including an easier to read and understand owner's manual and an excellent software application designed to program the UV-5R from a computer. The programming software is called CHIRP, and it is freely available online.

Of course, CHIRP is a great solution, provided you have a computer, an easy to install programming cable and the time to input all the data for 128 channels. But, what if you are on the road or out in the field and don't have a computer handy? What if you need to add in a frequency or program a channel on the fly?

We often receive calls from customers who just purchased their first Baofeng UV-5R from Buy Two Way Radios and want to know how to to operate it. More specifically, they want to know how to program their radio manually, directly from the radio itself.

So, here's how to do it. Follow the instructions below to manually program your Baofeng UV-5R direct from the keypad of the radio.

How to manually program a simplex channel

  • Step 1. Press [VFO/MR] and enter Frequency Mode.
  • Step 2. Press [A/B] and choose the A Side (upper display).
    The A side must be used to program channels into the radio. Programming data entered on the B Side (lower display) will not be saved.
  • Step 3. Press [BAND] for the frequency band.
    Toggle [BAND] to choose 136 MHz (VHF) or 470 MHz (UHF).
    If the incorrect band is chosen for the frequency entered in Step 5, the radio will cancel the operation.
  • Step 4. Disable TDR (Dual Watch/Dual Standby).
    Press [MENU] 7 [MENU] [press up/down arrow keys] OFF [MENU] [EXIT]
    It is highly advised to turn TDR off when programming directly from the radio.
  • Step 5. Enter the frequency.
    Use the keypad to enter the frequency into the radio.
  • Step 6. optional - Enter the transmit CTCSS/DCS code.
    • CTCSS - [MENU] 13 [MENU] [enter/choose code XXXX] [MENU] [EXIT]
    • DCS - [MENU] 12 [MENU] [choose code XXXXX] [MENU] [EXIT]
  • Step 7. Assign the frequency to a channel.
    [MENU] 27 [MENU] [enter channel number XXX] [MENU] [EXIT]

How to manually program a repeater channel

  • Step 1. Press [VFO/MR] and enter Frequency Mode.
  • Step 2. Press [A/B] and choose the A Side (upper display).
    Like the simplex channels, the A side must be used to program the repeater channels into the radio. Programming data entered on the B Side (lower display) will not be saved.
  • Step 3. Press [BAND] for the frequency band
    Toggle [BAND] to choose 136 MHz (VHF) or 470 MHz (UHF).
    If the incorrect band is chosen for the frequency entered in Step 6, the radio will cancel the operation.
  • Step 4. optional - Clear any CTCSS/DCS codes previously assigned to the channel.
    If no previous codes exist or when setting up the channel for the first time and no codes are needed, set the menu items listed below to OFF.

    • RX DCS - [MENU] 10 [MENU] [enter 0 (OFF)] [MENU] [EXIT]
    • RX CTCSS - [MENU] 11 [MENU] [enter 0 (OFF)] [MENU] [EXIT]
    • TX DCS - [MENU] 12 [MENU] [enter 0 (OFF)] [MENU] [EXIT]
    • TX CTCSS - [MENU] 13 [MENU] [enter 0 (OFF)] [MENU] [EXIT]
  • Step 5. Disable TDR (DualWatch/Dual Standby).
    Press [MENU] 7 [MENU] [press up/down arrow keys] OFF [MENU] [EXIT]
    It is highly advised to turn TDR off when programming directly from the radio.
  • Step 6. optional - Delete any existing data on the channel to program.
    Skip this step when setting up the channel for the first time.
    Press [MENU] 28 [press up/down arrow keys to choose channel number] [MENU] [EXIT]
    It is highly advised to turn TDR off when programming directly from the radio.
  • Step 7. Enter the repeater output (your receiving) frequency.
    Use the keypad to enter the frequency into the radio.
  • Step 8. Input the repeater frequency offset.
    Press [MENU] 26 [MENU] [enter the offset for 2 meter or 70 cm repeater] [MENU] [EXIT]
  • Step 9. Enter the Transmit Frequency Shift.
    Press [MENU] 25 [MENU] [enter 1 for positive shift or 2 for negative shift] [MENU][EXIT]
  • Step 10. optional - Enter the transmit CTCSS/DCS code.
    • CTCSS - [MENU] 13 [MENU] [enter/choose code XXXX] [MENU] [EXIT]
    • DCS - [MENU] 12 [MENU] [choose code XXXXX] [MENU] [EXIT]
  • Step 11. Assign the receive frequency entered in Step 7 to the channel.
    [MENU] 27 [MENU] [enter channel number XXX] [MENU] [EXIT]
  • Step 12. Press the [*Scan] button to activate Reverse Mode and display the transmit frequency.
  • Step 13. Assign the transmit frequency to the channel.
    Press [MENU] 27 [MENU] [enter the same memory channel entered in step 12] [MENU] [EXIT]
  • Step 14. Press the [*Scan] button to exit Reverse Mode.

To add more channels, simply repeat the steps above. If these step-by-step instructions are followed correctly, you should be able to program all 128 channels (000-127) in your Baofeng UV-5R as you need.

102 thoughts on “How to manually program the Baofeng UV-5R from the keypad”

  • I'm stuck on step 3 as my UV-5RV2+ doesn't have a Band key/button. Thanks.

    Reply
  • Paul Helm

    Is there any way that I can program if I don't have the frequency number that other radios around me with in the same building? Thank you for any help with this issue.

    Reply
  • Dave,
    You can set the min and max boundaries using the CHRIP software.
    Cordially,
    Rob
    kc8kpx

    Reply
  • Hello Dave,
    I have a Baofeng UV-5RV2+ I picked up off of Amazon last summer. Mine also transmits in the extended ranges you describe. I've read that these radios were't necessarily designed for Ham Radio. That would explain the wider transmit coverage.
    Cordially,
    Rob
    kc8kpx

    Reply
  • Dave M6DOA

    Hi all i recently bought a baofeng UV-5R and found it easy to program from the keypad. However when i checked how low it went i discovered it works as low down as 130 mhz and as high as 176.9975 VHF and on UHF 400 mhz to 520.9975, the info says 136 mhz to 176 mhz VHF and on UHF 400 to 520 mhz. Has anyone else found this extended range? Not programmed via a computer so not been expanded. Cheers Dave in UK M6DOA

    Reply
  • IM

    Dear Friends,
    How to hide or disable Channel mode B from showing up or using it. ?
    please advise

    Reply
  • Rick

    Hi Ruth, are you referring to Step 6 in the simplex instructions or the repeater channel instructions? In either case, you would assign any channel number not already assigned to a frequency.

    Reply
  • Ruth

    Just wondering wat would the frequency channel be at step 6 it has me a bit confused.thank you in advance

    Reply
  • Pat Ocoffey

    Very Helpful! How do I name the programmed channels?

    Reply

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