PRC - Portable Radio Communication

From RadioNerds
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This Article is Incomplete and has Errors
This data has come from many sources, and was copied into this article in bulk. There are several inconsistencies with other entries on the wiki. It is being updated over time.

AN/PRC-1 RT-30
Suitcase portable, HF, CW transmitter receiver. Built into a common suitcase, the PRC-1 was originally intended for use by the OSS in WW-II. It was however rejected as too heavy. Regardless, it saw extensive service with them and other Intelligence and Guerrilla forces. Ops 2-12mc in two continuously tunable bands, AM or CW (rec). Two bands with Xtal control, CW only (trans). RF power output is 30 watts. Size 18 x 13.25 x 17.25" 32lbs,OD color
VHF set for Paratroop Liaison
Portable microwave set to replace signal lights
Disguised version of BC-611
CW transmitter-receiver built for use by special agents of Military Intelligence. Set could be supplied in either luggage-type carry case, or contained in canvas bags. Transmitter ops 4-16mc via 4 plug in coils sets, xtal control with 10-16 watts output. Receiver ops 4.5-16mc continuously tunable in 2 bands. Powered from 110 or 220vac mains. Size 11 x 10 x 4.5", 15lbs. Black crinkle finish
AN/PRC-6 RT-196
VHF FM handheld transceiver. Intended to replace the BC-611 of WW-II, development started before the end of that war. The PRC-6 entered service in 1951; preliminary manuals were printed in 1949. It remained in service at least until the mid 1960's. Ops 47-54mc,approx RF output 350mw, 1 channel xtal control. Requires 1.5v/850ma, 45v/8ma, 90v/30ma(trans), 1.5v/550, 45v/12ma, 90v/3ma/, -3v/bs (rec), supplied by BA-270 battery. Size, 4.75 x 4.75 x 14.5,3.5lbs. Accessories include H-33 handset, short tape antenna, AT-249 or AT-340 homing antennas, ID-292 channel alignment indicator, CK-6 xtal kit (42 CR-23 xtals in metal box).
AN/PRC-7 (XN-1)
Ground, vehicular, or backpack transceiver. Possibly never progressed past the experimental stage, only one has ever been encountered. It is thought to use some common modules with the PRC-10 family of radios. Ops 2-12mc(trans), 2-15mc(rec), AM, on five xtal control channels, with 800mw RF output. Accessories include 10'10"whip antenna, batteries B-34 (6vdc), B-35 (1.5vdc), 3ea B-53 (135vdc). 4 3/4 x 10 1/8 x 9 27/32". Developed by RCA for US Navy circa 1955,original cost $392.00
Variants of this family of radios are known to have been produced in numerous countries with some expanding on the U.S. systems to include: Solid state inverter type power supplies that allowed backpack operation from standard batteries (at least France and Canada). Dual type handset and antenna compatibility (at least Canada). R.F. power amplifiers for increased range while mobile (France and Germany).
Variants of this family of radios are known to have been produced in numerous countries with some expanding on the U.S. systems to include: Solid state inverter type power supplies that allowed backpack operation from standard batteries (at least France and Canada). Dual type handset and antenna compatibility (at least Canada). R.F. power amplifiers for increased range while mobile (France and Germany).
Variants of this family of radios are known to have been produced in numerous countries with some expanding on the U.S. systems to include: Solid state inverter type power supplies that allowed backpack operation from standard batteries (at least France and Canada). Dual type handset and antenna compatibility (at least Canada). R.F. power amplifiers for increased range while mobile (France and Germany).
AN/PRC-14 RT-271
Backpack UHF AM transceiver. Intended for use by FAC's in strike control of Fighter Aircraft. Operates on any of four xtal control channels between 225-399.9mc,AM, with approx 1 watt RF output. The PRC 14 can use either an H-33 handset or T-17 mic & HS-30 headphones (in conjunction with CX-2098 cable). Other accessories include CW-293 Radio set bag, CX-2097 power cable, ME-68 ammeter, BB-402 6v wet cell. Circa 1958.
Experimental Handheld VHF/FM transceiver. Ops on two xtal control channels, 47-55.4mc,with an output power of 100mw.Requires 45v/12ma & 1.5v/500ma (rec), 45v/24ma & 1.5v/560ma (trans). Size 2 3/8 x 2 1/2 x 10 1/2,3.5lbs.

Jane's Military Communications, 1979/80,81 & 88 List an HF version of the PRC-15 as being in use by US Armed Forces. However, the picture shown has been obviously posed for by a professional model. It is believed that either a type O has been made or this is a Manufactures model number and not an AN/type. The radio pictured bears a strong Southcomm family resemblance. In any case, the PRC-15 designation is not an officially adopted one, nor has the US adopted or do they use this radio with that number affixed.

Backpack or portable ground VHF, FM transceiver. Adaptation of the normally vehicular RT-70/GRC. Ops 47-58mc,FM, with an RF output of approx 500mw. Requires 6v & 90v supplied by 5ea BA-403, & 1ea BA-419.Circa, 1951.
Handheld VHF/UHF AM transceiver intended for search & rescue service & used by the US Navy. Ops on 121.5 & 243mc AM/MCW, with an RF power output of 50mw.Requires 135v & 1.5v supplied by internal batteries. Size 14 3/4 x 2 5/8 x2 7/8". Original cost circa 1951-1953
Commercial (Sunair) model number for the AN/PRC-108
AN/PRC-21 RT-209
Hand-carried portable VHF/FM transceiver. Probable use was by Military Police & other security forces. Ops on one xtal control frequency between 152-174mc with an RF power output of 150mw. Requires 67.5v/11ma, 45v/10ma, 1.5v/420ma,-6v/10-125ma (rec), 135v/28ma, 67.5v/4ma,
The PRC-22 is described as a UHF "Handie Talkie" capable of operation over the frequency range of 225-399.9mc with a possible 1760 channels. RF output power is rated at 300mw, with AM voice operation. Circa 1951, only three components are noted as being part of the PRC-22 system: R.F Tuner, I.F. amplifier, Power Supply. The latter might indicate the use of a vibrator type power supply and wet cell batteries. Built by Air Associates Inc., contract NObar-52660 June 1951.
AN/PRC-23 RT-235
Hand-carried portable VHF/FM transceiver. Adoption of the commercial Motorola FHTR-1BLL. Ops on one xtal control frequency between 25-30mc with an RF output power of 500mw. Requires 6ea BA-30 1.5v batteries, 3ea BA-51 67.5v batteries, & AT-348 antenna. Size 12 5/8 x 3 1/8 x 12 1/2", 14.9lbs. Circa approx 1953
AN/PRC-24 RT-236
Identical to PRC-23 except operation is from 40-50mc, Motorola model number FHTR-1BH
AN/PRC-25 RT-505
First solid state FM, tactical backpack transceiver, also first to use the now standard 150cps tone squelch system. Ops 30-75.95mc, synthesized, on any of 920 channels at 50 kHz spacing, with 2 mechanically set. RF power output is rated at 2 watts; actual measured output averages 4 watts. Radio can be used vehicular with the addition of the AM-2060 amplifier/power supply (several other types avail), see VRC-53 & GRC-125 for more info. Requires 3v & 12-15v normally supplied by BA-4386 (many battery types exist). Size (RT-505 less battery box) 4 x 11 x 11", 13.5lbs. Numerous accessories were/are produced for the PRC-25/77 family to help it fulfil many roles, the major ones are AT-892 (short tape antenna), AT-271 & AB-591 (long antenna & rubber spring base), AT-912 or AS-1729 (vehicular antennas), T-984 (longwire antenna, RC-292 (fixed station antenna), AT-784 (homing antenna), ST-138 (backpack harness), CY-2562 (battery box), H-138 or H-189 (handsets), CW-503 (canvas antenna & accessories bag).
This number was originally intended to be used on the PRC-35. However, it was skipped to avoid possible confusion with the Canadian CPRC-26. A quantity of these radios were procured by the US in the mid 1950's to be tested as a possible replacement for the PRC-6. For more info see CPRC-26
Backpack UHF/AM transceiver. Intended for use by ground troops for close air support purposes as a replacement for the Navy model MAY. Ops 225-400mc on any one of 4 xtal control channels. R.F. output power is rated at 2 watts. DC power derived from internal dry batteries. Size 3 x 12 x 19", 25 lbs. Built by Designers for Industry, Cleveland Oh., Contract NObar-63367, March 1953.
AN/PRC-28 / RT-339
Backpack VHF, FM transceiver, Identical to PRC-9A, except is not continuously tunable. Ops 30-42mc on any one xtal controlled channel, with an RF output of 850mw.All other parameters, accessories etc are the same as PRC-9A. Original cost, circa 1953, $810.00
Hand carried VHF, FM portable transceiver. Adoption of the commercial Motorola model X-11-1A. Intended for use by guards & security police for internal security or industrial control operations. Ops 30-42mc on one xtal control channel with an RF output power of 750mw. Requires three 45v (Burgess M-30) B batteries, & two ea. 1.5v standard 4F batteries. Accessories include P-8653-A (antenna), P-9096 (battery power supply), K-9098 (carry case), TA-124 (carry strap kit), & P-9094A (microphone). Size 5 x 12 1/8 x 15 1/8" 23.7lbs. US Navy order date 20 Sept. 1954.
Experimental handheld VHF FM transceiver. Very similar to the PRC-15, this set was the first attempt to utilize the then new solid state technology. Ops 25-50mc,on any two of 500 channels, xtal control. With an RF output power of 100mw. Requires 4.5v/15ma & 1.5v/5ma(rec), 4.5v/250ma & 1.5v/450ma (trans). Size 2 x 2 x 8.5", 2lbs 12oz. Ref.#14
Handheld UHF AM, MCW transceiver. Apparently intended for use by downed Airman. Approx vintage 1960. Ops on 243mc, Requires an external battery connected via an umbilical cable (Possibly the same as that used on the URC-4). Size 2 7/8 x 1 3/4 x 4 3/4", haze gray in color.
AN/PRC-33 RT-339
Hand carried VHF FM portable transceiver. Adoption of a militarized commercial radio set Type PS-40 Model HC by Industrial Radio. Ops on any one xtal control channel between 30-42mc,with an RF output power of 750mw. Requires 1.5v (Burgess 8F), 45v, & 135v (both B voltages supplied by multiple Burgess M-39 batteries), a 110vac and various DC vibrator supplies are also known to have been made. Accessories include AT-673 (antenna), CY-1916 (case), & microphone. Size 4.5 x 10 x 11.5", 15lbs. US Navy order date 14 Sept.1955
(X1); Experimental VHF FM helmet transceiver. Ops 38-51mc on any one of twelve xtal control channels, with an RF output power of 30mw. Range (whip extended) 500yds. Requires 1.5v/8ma & 4.5v/13ma(rec), 1.5v/8ma, 4.5v/13ma, & 45v/12ma (trans) provided by a special multi cell battery. Size4 9/16 x 2 7/8 x 3/4"(RT unit), Weight including helmet 3.5lbs. Last manual printing 1961.
(XC-2); Experimental VHF FM portable transceiver. Designed by RCA in conjunction with the PRC-25/VRC-12 equipment as a replacement for the PRC-6. Its original designation of PRC-26 was changed to avoid confusion with a very similar Canadian set (see CPRC-26). Ops 30-69.95 on any 4 presettable frequencies out of 800 synthesized channels spaced 50kc apart. RF power output 600mw. Requires 11.7v/56ma & 26v/7.3ma(rec), 11.7v/71ma & 26v/120ma(trans). Size 11 x 6 3/8 x 3 3/4, 9.5lbs. Known accessories include battery box, handset & antenna (common with PRC-25).
(X1); Experimental VHF FM belt worn transceiver. Designed by RCA in conjunction with the PRC-34. The PRC-36 uses the same basic RT unit as the PRC-34. All operating parameters are the same as the PRC-34 with the exception of frequency range (47.8-51mc).
Handheld VHF FM transceiver. Intended for use by Air Police & with Air Rescue teams as a replacement for the PRC-21 in the US Air Force. Ops 144-174mc, with an RF power output of 1 watt. Power could be provided by either 6 or 12v rechargeable batteries. No other information is available. Reportedly the set could use any of the following accessories, Antenna, case, carry strap, loudspeaker, microphone, & power supply.
HF/SSB, VHF/FM backpack transceiver. Built in very limited quantities by Collins Radio. Ops 20-69.99mc in 10kc steps, FM or USB. A built in antenna tuner can accommodate either 5 & 10ft whips, or a 10ft vehicular antenna. Other accessories common with the PRC-41 include H-33 handset, speaker, & carry harness. Ref. Collins HF Communications Catalogue 1964/65
Portable VHF,FM transceiver. Built by Industrial Radio, suspect this is a commercial type radio similar to the PRC-40, and of tube type or hybrid circuitry. Ops 28-44mc FM with an output power of 1.5 watts. Requires 1.5v, 15v, & 150v. Original cost $439.00.No further information avail.
Hand carried VHF FM portable transceiver. Built by Industrial Radio, it's a non-tactical radio built for police & security forces. Ops 132-152mc,on one xtal control channel, with an output power of 1.5 watts (PRC-40) or 1 watt (PRC-40AX), has built in loud speaker & uses external hand mic. Requires 15v supplied by 6ea Eveready 707 7.5-volt batteries (PRC-40AX) or 1.5v, 15v & 150v(PRC-40). Accessories include 1/4 wave whip type antenna & CY-2625 canvas carry bag with associated straps for over the shoulder or backpack carry. Original cost $1350.00.
Backpack, vehicular or fixed station, UHF, AM transceiver. Entered service approx 1963 with the US Navy & by 1964 was adopted by all services. Ops 225-399.9mc on any one of 1750 synthesized channels spaced 100kc apart. RF output power is 3 watts. (A) models are identical, except are capable of operating X-mode with the TSEC/KY-38. Requires 24vdc normally supplied by vehicle storage battery, BB-451 silver zinc rechargeable battery, or PP-3700 110vac power supply. Weight 44.6 lbs. with battery. Accessories include H-33 handset, LS-166 loudspeaker, AS-1404 antenna (can be used portable, vehicular or fixed station), AS-1405 directional fixed station antenna, AB-777 mast, CY-3885 transit case, MT-2976 vehicle mount radio, MT-2977 mounting, CX-8686 power cable, CX-8687 power cable, CX-8688 spec purpose electrical cable, harness set, rucksack, frame. Original cost $4370.00.
Backpack HF/SSB transceiver. Intended for tactical use in support of amphibious operations. Ops 2-12mc with a possible 20,000 channels. R.F output power is rated at 20 watts. Operable from 110vac 60cps, or internal batteries (27.5vdc). Built by AVCO Mfg. Corp, Lawrence, Mass. contract NObar-77507, November 1958. Ref. #38. A second description of this radio exists as printed in a late 60's edition of "Electronics, a McGraw-Hill publication". Here it is noted as being a developmental radio by AVCO that turned into the PRC-70 program. Ops 2-76mc in 1kc steps with an R.F. output power of 40 watts. 32 lbs.
Navy flight deck communication system. Ref. late 60's edition of "Electronics", a McGraw-Hill publication. No further information.
General purpose VHF, FM portable transceiver. Ops 144-174mc on one xtal control channel with an output power of 1 watt. Requires 10.5v (rec), 1.5v & 150v (trans).
RT-671; two man, pack-portable HF USB/CW transceiver. Collins designed and built for use by Special Forces. Ops 2-12mc on any one of 10,000 synthesized frequencies spaced every 1kc. RF output power is 100 watts (high) or 20 watts (low). Requires 110vac(400cps) or 24vdc supplied by vehicle storage battery, or BB-451 silver zinc rechargeable battery. Size (RT-671) 7 x 13.5 x 21.25, 42lbs. Accessories include CY-3700 transit case, CW-647 panel cover, H-33 handset, LS-166 loudspeaker, H-233 headphones, J-45 telegraph key, MX-4430 battery adapter terminal, CX-8393 AC power cable, CX-8394 DC power cable, CX-8395 battery cable, AS-1320 whip antenna & canvas bag, AS-1321 long wire antenna, MT-2786 legs & ground plane & canvas bag, MK-1519 vertical installation kit, CV-2455 TTY converter, 2 ea pack frames, rucksack bag. A small 110vac/400cps gas generator is also known to have been built by Homelite based on a chain saw motor. Original equipment cost $6004.00.
Handheld UHF, AM/MCW transceiver. Designed for use by downed aircrew. Ops 225-400mc on any one xtal control channel with an RF power output of 100-250mw. Size 5.75 x 1.75 x 3.75". Solid State Design requires 6 and 14vdc supplied by an external battery. No further information. Original cost $1080.00.
(various); Variants of the PRC-49 are known to exist, these include PRC-49A, B, & C. It is unknown the differences between these & previous versions, as all share the same basic features & parameters. It is possible that the only difference is in the original manufacturer/supplier. C models are reported to include a volume control.
Portable HF/CW transmitter-receiver. Ops 3-16mc Rx, 3-32 MHz Tx, CW Tx only, crystal controlled, 5W with Amp AM-2855, 15 W with AM-2856, runs from 6-72 VDC or 110 VDC, 2 penlight cells (3vdc) for Rx. Built by Delco and Victory. Ref. late 60's edition of "Electronics", a McGraw-Hill publication.
Headset VHF, FM transceiver. Developed & manufactured by the Overhaul & Repair Department, US Navy Air Station, Norfolk VA. This radio is a repackaged PRC-34/36 into a headset intended for use in extreme noise environments, & can be incorporated into a standard Naval ground air crewman's protective helmet. For more information see PRC-34 & 36.Circa 1961
Receiver transmitter, VHF, FM. Built by Allied Signal with an original Navy cost of $1810.00. Ops on one channel, 132-150.8mc, A3, size 4 x12 X 16", 8.4vdc operating voltage, NSN 5820-00-757-3010. No further information.
Built by Allied Signal with an original US Navy cost of $2610.00.NSN 5820-00-757-3011,no further information. Ref.#28. Additional information found in a late 60's edition of "Electronics", a (McGraw-Hill publication): AD805-257, UHF, too bulky, tubes employed
RT-772; Body worn VHF, FM transceiver. Built by Repco for general-purpose use. Ops 144-174mc on any one xtal control frequency. RF power output is 1 watt. Requires 12vdc.Original US Air Force cost $450.00.
Hand-carried, portable, VHF FM transceiver. Adoption of the commercial Motorola model Z23BAC1001AR by the US Treasury Department. Note, this radio is identical except for color, frequency split, & the use of a microphone versus handset, to the US Navy's PRC-61. Circuit design includes a 100% solid state receiver & a hybrid transmitter. Provisions exist for use of a handset or internal loudspeaker. Ops 152-174mc on any one (two channels optional) xtal controlled frequency. RF power output 1 watt. Requires 6v/26ma (rec) provided by Burgess F4P1 battery, 1.5v/875ma (Burgess 4D cell), 67.5v & 130v/55ma (2ea Burgess XX45) trans. Optionally power could be supplied via internal 6 volt nicads or any external 12vdc source using a solid state inverter, a 110vac power supply was also available. Accessories include 1/4 wave whip antenna 2AD6021A, Handset ZMN6003A, carry strap ZLN6024A, and carry case ZLN6025A. Size 12 1/8 x 3 1/8 x 10 1/8", 7lbs(less batteries). Circa 1961
RT-693; Hand-carried VHF, FM portable transceiver. Identical to PRC-59 except frequency range of 130-152mc, use of microphone and internal loudspeaker versus a handset. Adopted at least for use by the US Navy, color is haze gray. Uses battery box CY-3870. Original US Navy cost $1770.00. For more information see PRC-59.
Manpack HF AM/SSB transceiver. This radio was reported to be used in Vietnam by patrols to talk to unit headquarters in a magazine article "Vietnam, Electronics in War", Electronics magazine May 16,1966. Reported to operate 2-30mc, AM & SSB. Other reports indicate an operational range of 1-12mc with AM, CW, & MCW modes of operation. An Australian list of current issue equipment, circa 1966, includes this radio and describes it as being under development in the U.S. A further description from this same country reads: "AN/PRC-62 is an HF SSB manpack or vehicular set. Frequency Range 2 to 30 mc/s in 28,000 x 1 kc/s steps. Emission SSB Voice and CW. Power Output 20 Watts. Size 13" x 17 1/4" x 4", Weight 29 pounds. Power Source: 12 volt Nickel Cadmium battery for manpack use or 24 volt vehicle supply. Antennas:
  1. Manually tuned 9'3" portable whip
  2. Adjustable sloping wire with counterpoise.
  3. Doublet with transmission line
  4. Vehicular 15ft whip
Handheld UHF AM/beacon transceiver. Designed & built by GTE for use by downed aircrew. Ops on 243mc, with one xtal control channel. Requires approx 12vdc. Size 1.5 x 4.5 x 3.25". Original cost (US Navy) $734.00.
Manpack HF, AM/CW transceiver. Adoption of the CIA's Delco 5300 for use by US Army Special Forces. Ops 2.2-6mc on any of four xtal control frequencies. RF output power is 5 watts (CW) & 1.5 watts (AM). Requires 4v, 12, & 24v normally supplied by BA-1509. Size 10 x 5 x 4.5", 7.5lbs(with battery). Circa 1965. The PRC-64 is also known to have seen service with Australian SAS in South East Asia and was listed as a standard issue item circa 1966 PRC-64A; Same as the PRC-64, but with added provision for 300wpm code burst operation using GRA-71 keyer.
Man-pack VHF, AM transceiver. For tactical use to support landing or parachute drop operations. Ops 100-156mc on any of 1120 channels. RF output is 5 watts. Requires 26.5vdc.
Backpack VHF/UHF, AM transceiver. Intended for use by FAC's, paratroopers, & other combat communications teams in landing, parachute drop, & fighter strike control operations. Ops 225-399.9 on any of 3500 synthesized channels, spaced 50kc apart. RF power output is 3 watts. Requires 24vdc supplied by either alkaline or rechargeable nicad batteries. Set is small enough to be held & operated with one hand. Original US Airforce cost $8926.23
PRC-66A; Same as the PRC-66 with added squelch function.
PRC-66B; Same as the PRC-66A with an added Guard channel Rx option with installation of proper module, and added wide band audio, for use with speech security equipment.
Personal portable VHF, FM transceiver. Lightweight self-contained radio set for personal communication within a half mile of a central base station. Ops 40-44mc on one xtal control channel. RF output power is 160mw. Requires 10vdc. No further information.
RT-1113; Handheld VHF FM transceiver. Intended for tactical short-range communications between persons in independent small action teams. The PRC-68 can be provided with equipment that will allow secure speech & vehicular operation. Ops on 50kc channel spacing, with the 10 channels consecutively spaced 200kc from each other, thus covering any 2mc segment of the 30-79.95mc range. RF power output is 1 watt with a range of 330yrds (short antenna) or 1 mile (long antenna). Requires 12-15vdc supplied by BA-1588, several other battery types are also available. Size 8.35 x 3.8 x 1.52", 46oz (including antenna & battery). Accessories include various standard handsets & headsets, 6"short rubber antenna, 14"long rubber antenna, PRC-25/77 tape antennas can also be used, nylon carry case & shoulder strap, T S-3354 test set. Note, the illustrations provided in Ref. #9, #11, & #12 are of experimental sets, data provided in Ref.#9, & #9A is incorrect. Original cost $1884.00
PRC-68A; This later variant of the PRC-68 has the ability to operate on ten preset channels with 25kc channel spacing, in any sequence within any one of four selectable sub-bands, 30-40, 40-54, 50-64, 60-80mc. Channel presets are accomplished via internal programming. The radio has a slightly larger cabinet, but retains complete compatibility with previous model accessories.
PRC-68B; Improvement of the PRC-68 that includes an external antenna load control, LCD frequency display, 2 watts RF output (adjustable), 2.5kc channel spacing with full band coverage, simplex or half duplex modes of operation, NBFM or WBFM options for each channel both on Tx and Rx. It's low band module is reported to be replaceable with another which will allow high band operation, but it is possible that reports are confused with that of the (V) variants. Original US Airforce cost $3084.50
PRC-68B (V) 1 and PRC-68B (V) 2; It appears that the (V) versions of the PRC-68B reflect a standard PRC-68B with a particular band module installed. I/E PRC-68 (V) 1 contains the lowband 30-80mc module, and PRC-68 (V) 2 contains the highband 130-174mc module.
PRC-68B (V) 2;This radio appears to be a variant of the PRC-68B, produced for the US Airforce at a cost of $3485.00. It is very similar to the PRC-126V, & may have been replaced by the PRC-128V. Ops 130-174mc, with an adjustable 1-2watts output. Size 3.8W x 1.52H x 9.32L inches, 3.125 lbs. NSN 5820-01-248-2852.
PRC-68 (X); Improvement of the PRC-68B that include external frequency selection in 25kc steps, use of 2 plug in depo repairable printed circuit cards. Production started 1984.
PRC-68 (X-2); Same as PRC-68 (X-4) except operation is 30-88mc.Ten preset channels that can be set for any frequency in the band with 12.5, 20, 25, 30,or 50kc spacing. In production 1984.
PRC-68(X-4); Adaptation of the PRC-68B that changes it's frequency coverage to 130-174mc by replacing the RF module. Other operational parameters are unchanged. In production 1984.
AN/PRC-70 RT-1133
Backpack HF/VHF, AM/CW/USB/FSK/FM transceiver. Designed for use by US Special Forces in an attempt to provide communications with all available tactical radio types without the need to carry multiple sets. Ops on any frequency between 2-75.999mc with 100cps spacing (FM 30-76mc). RF Power output is 30 watts (USB/FM/CW/FSK), 7 .5 watts (AM). Requires 24vdc normally supplied by batteries BB-651, or BB-534, or power supply PP-6148.Size 4 x 13 x 12", 20lbs(less battery case), 39lbs (with battery).
PRC-70 (ABN); Adaptation of the PRC-70 for aircraft use.

PRC-70 (V) 1; Improvements to the PRC-70 including DC voltage input protection, receiver RF overload protection, & a BNC 50 ohm antenna output connection that bypasses the antenna tuning network. These available from the manufacture (Cincinnati Electronics) as a field change modification kit.

PRC-70 (VT-100); Cincinnati Electronics designation for vehicular adaptation of the PRC-70.

Backpack multi transceiver set, HF/VHF/UHF, AM/FM/SSB. Intended for use by FAC's & other forward command applications in the communication with aircraft, ground & Naval forces. The PRC-71 is comprised of a four transceiver set, each is 100% solid state, & may be combined or operated individually with self contained batteries. Vehicular operation is also possible from the vehicles 24vdc source. RT-775 ops 240-350mc on four xtal control channels, with an RF power output of 1 watt. AM phone, MCW, or beacon modes. RT-776, ops 110-140mc on six xtal control channels, with an RF power output of 1.5 watts. AM phone, MCW or beacon modes. RT-777, ops 38-50mc on two xtal control channels, with an RF power output of 6 watts, FM phone, MCW, & beacon modes. RT-778 ops 4-20mc on 6 xtal control channels, with an RF power output of 10 watts. SSB/CW rec, CW transmit. NSN 5820-00-880-7114.

Backpack multi transceiver set HF/VHF/UHF, SSB/AM/FM. This radio system is similar in purpose to the PRC-71. The set is comprised of four transceivers which can be operate individually with their self contained batteries, or all can be combined into a common pack frame. Ops 2-11.99mc on any of 10,000 synthesized frequencies spaced 1kc apart (RT-835), 38-50mc on any 6 xtal control channels (RT-836), 110-140mc on any 6 xtal control channels (RT-838), 240-350mc on any 4 xtal control channels (RT-837). RF output power; 10 watts SSB/CW, 5 watts MCW (RT-835). 6 watts, FM (RT-836). 1.5 watts, AM (RT-838). 1 watt, AM (RT-837). Requires 24vdc supplied by external DC source or 14.8v rechargeable nicad battery BB-618 (2ea for RT-835). Accessories include AS-1967 48"tape antenna for RT-836, AS-1968 23" tape antenna for RT-838, AS-1969 10"tape antenna forRT-837, AS-1970 108"whip antenna for RT-835 (this is a standard AT-271 less the 3/8 x 24 thread adapter), AS-1971 85'lonwire antenna for RT-835, CX-11691 repeater cable, 5ea BB-618 batteries, H-248 headset/microphone, CW-894 canvas accessories bag, CW-894 canvas carry bag for RT-836/837 or 838, ST-154 Rucksack (equipment mounting rack for 4 transceivers & accessories bag), CX-11559 remote operations cable, C-8050 remote control head. Sizes 5 x 8 x 10", 9.6lbs(RT-835), 3.3 x 5 x 7"(RT-836, 837,838), 3.6lbs (RT-836), 3.5lbs(RT-838), 3,8lbs(RT-837). Circa 1970.
Hand held VHF FM transceiver. Built by Repco for the US Navy with a unit cost of $753.00. The PRC-73 & others, was to be replaced by the PRC-94V1. Ops 132-174mc with 1.5 watts RF output. Requires 25vdc. NSN 5820-00-989-4705
AN/PRC-74 RT-794
Backpack HF, USB/CW transceiver. Intended to replace the TRC-77, GRC-9, GRC-109, & PRC-64 then in use with US Army Special Forces Teams. Ops 2-12mc on any of 10,000 synthesized frequencies, in 1kc steps, and provisions for fine tune. RF power output is 15 watts. Requires 10.5-17vdc supplied by 10ea rechargeable nicad batteries BB-458, or 70ea dry battery BA-70, or 2ea Batteries BA-386/PRC-25 or BA-4386/PRC-25, or BB-5598 lithium battery, or PP-4514 vehicular or fixed station audio amplifier/power supply & 24vdc or 110vac,other battery power supplies are also available. Size 15.5 x 3.75 x 12", 14.4lbs (less battery). Accessories include, AS-1887 center loaded whip antenna, AB-955 rubber spring antenna base support, MT-3613 antenna mounting bracket, H-189 handset, M-80 microphone, H-140 headphones, KY-562 telegraph key, CW-836 accessories bag, CY-4880 battery box (10ea BB-458 or 70ea BA-70), or CY-6121 battery box, or CY-7773 battery box (universal/dual battery, PRC-25/77 type, rechargeable), or CY-6314 battery box (dual PRC-25 type batteries, same as CY-7773 except not rechargeable), CX-11468 cable/CW key. Original cost $5560.00; all the PRC-74 series are to be replaced by the PRC-104
PRC-74A; Same as PRC-74 with the addition of code burst capability using GRA-71 keyer & CX-10239 cable, & replacement of panel markings (MC & KC with MHz & kHz) beginning with serial number 371, circa 1966.Original cost $7600.00.
PRC-74B; Same as PRC-74A except has the extended frequency range of 2-18mc. Circa 1967. Manufactured by Hughes Aircraft in the US, and by Rediffusion in the UK as the GR-345.
PRC-74C; Identical to the PRC-74B except for the front panel frequency markings being in MHZ/KHZ (megahertz/kilohertz) rather than MC/KC (megacycles/kilocycles), and certain ruggedization.
PRC-74T; Variant of the PRC-74B built by Tadiran in Israel. This model is identical to the US version with the exception of an added AME mode. The Basic RT unit can be combined with an amplifier/power unit (OA-7040T) & mounting MT-7400T to form the VRC-740T vehicular system.
PRC-74 (?); Two other variants of the PRC-74 have been reported to exist. These both include 2-30mc coverage, but in different manors. #1. Is of U.S. origin & is a Depo modification of a standard PRC-74 which includes an outboard conversion along with internal modifications. #2. Is of Israeli origin, with all modifications being internal.
AN/PRC-75 RT-976
Handheld UHF, AM transceiver. Intended purpose similar to that of the PRC-66. Operates 225-399.9mc one of 3500 front panel, settable channels (three each thumb operated dials). AM/MCW with an output power of 1 watt. Requires 18-30vdc. Accessories include AS-2447 14.6" tape antenna, UG-1884 BNC antenna adapter, CX-12162 DC/Audio cable, LS-549 loud speaker, CY-6472, CY-6729, ST-162, also various vehicular installation equipment. Size 1.6 x 4.3 x 8", 6lbs. Original cost $7277.00.
PRC-75A; The difference between this, & the earlier model are unknown. The PRC-75A is however known to have been used by the US Navy & Marine Corps, with an original cost of $6309.68.
PRC-76; Portable radio set that provides two-way communications with any other FM radio set operating between 70-80mc. With 1w RF output. No further information. Ref.#29A Additional information was supplied in a late 60's edition of "Electronics", a McGraw-Hill publication: AF project 407L, 30-76 single channel, crystal control, 1 Watt.
RT-841; Backpack VHF, FM transceiver. Developed as replacement for the PRC-25. The PRC-77 is physically identical to the PRC-25 & uses all common accessories along with many other common components. Electronically the only difference is the replacement of the PRC-25's output tube and circuitry with transistors, resulting in a 100% solid state radio Additionally, the audio bandwidth has been widened to allow operation with secure voice equipment. For operational parameters & accessories, see PRC-25.
PRC-81; Original US Navy cost $1150.00, NSN 5820-00-6157.
Combination of PRC-83, PRC-84, PRC-85, PRC-86. System provides communication 2-400mc in manpack portable or vehicular configuration. Units are mounted in a vehicular adapter that provides voltage switching, battery charging, & small item accessory storage (size 14"H x 9"W x 23"L) requires 12vdc.
See also PRC-82, Portable HF, SSB transceiver. Used as part of PRC-82 or possibly as stand-alone radio. Ops 1-12mc in 1KC steps, with an output power of 12 watts.
See also PRC-82, Portable VHF FM transceiver. Used as part of PRC-82 or possibly as stand-alone radio. Ops 30-76mc, channel spacing 50kc apart providing a possible 2320 channels, frequency agile with code store. An output power of 6 watts (alternately 2.5 watts has been reported).
See also PRC-82, Portable VHF AM transceiver. Used as part of the PRC-82, or as a stand-alone radio. Ops 110-150mc, channel spacing 25kc apart, with an output power of 2 watts. Original US Airforce cost $5000, NSN 5820-00-008-6474, no further information.
See also PRC-82, Portable UHF AM transceiver. Used as part of PRC-82, or possibly as a stand-alone radio. Ops 225-400mc, chan spacing 50kc, with an output power of 2 watts.
Para-Rescue radio, VOX operated. Helmet or vest, worn. Under development circa 1971. Ref. late 60's edition of "Electronics", (a McGraw-Hill publication).
Handheld VHF FM transceiver. Developed for the US Marine Corps out of dissatisfaction with the Army's combination PRT-4 & PRR-9 radio set, which was intended (in part) to replace the PRC-6, circa 1964. Three conflicting physical descriptions exist from both official & non-official but informed sources.
  1. The PRC-88 is a repackaged PRT-4 & PRR-9 radio set into a single common handheld cabinet, Ref.#14, #26.
  1. The PRC-88 is simply the possession of both the PRT-4 & PRR-9, (normally a PRR-9 would be issued to each member of a squad, while only the squad leader was issued both the PRR-9 & PRT-4).
  1. The PRC-88 never existed in physical form, but only on paper.

Ops 47-54mc, on one xtal control channel (2 chan on transmitter), with a RF power output of 450mw. Requires 5v(rec), 12-15v(trans). I/E the operational parameters are the same as for the PRT-4 & PRR-9. Ref.#14, #26, various PRC-25/77, PRT-4 & PRR-9 manuals.

Handheld VHF/FM transceiver. Built by Zenith Radio Corp. for use by the U.S. Coast Guard. Intended for operation on the International VHF Marine band. Ops 156-158mc on any of four crystal control channels with the following frequencies supplied: Ch.16 (156.8mc), Ch.21c (157.05mc), Ch.22c (157.10mc), Ch.23c (157.1mc). Rated RF output power is 4 watts derived from an internal 12.5 volt mercury battery. Audio output is rated at 500mw. Size 8.75"H x 3.5"W x 2"D, 3.9lbs. Color, gray enamel. System Components include: RT unit, Battery box, leather carry case and shoulder strap.
Handheld UHF, AM/MCW/Beacon transceiver. Developed as a replacement for The PRC-63 (and others). For use by downed aircrew members. Ops on 243mc AM/MCW/Beacon or 282.8mc voice only, with an output power of 500mw. Requires 14v as supplied by BA-1568 battery. Size 6"H x 3 1/8"H x 1 1/2" T, 22oz. (24oz.with battery). Numerous variations of the PRC-90 exist; these include PRC-90-1, PRC-90-2, PRC-90-2C, PRC-90-2T, & PRC-90T. Other than the original manufacturer, & federal stock numbers, it is unknown what the differences between these models are.
PRC-90-1; Built by ACR versus GTE, NSN 5820-01-158-6082. Ops from 9.5-14vdc, uses BA-1568 battery, 1.6 lbs. Known US Navy, Army & Airforce use, original cost $600.00. Ref.#28
PRC-90-2; Same as PRC-90-1, NSN 5820-01-238-6603, original cost $383-$400. Ref.#28
PRC-90-2C; Noted as having variable frequency capacity. NSN 5820-01-338-3036. Original US Airforce cost $284.00. Ref.#28
PRC-90-2T; Same as PRC-90-2C. Ref.#28
PRC-90T; Supplied on one frequency between 251.9 & 236mc, & with a second alternate frequency. US Airforce cost $545.90, NSN 5820-00-469-5658. Ref.#28
Handheld VHF FM transceiver. Resembles small narrow BC-611. Haze gray in color, & is constructed of high impact plastic. Known US Navy use.
PRC-91A/RT-291A;bHandheld VHF FM transceiver. Adoption of a commercial Repco model series 10-8 (810-009-010) for general-purpose non-tactical communications. Ops 132-150.8mc, on one (optionally four) xtal control frequency, with an RF power output of 2 watts (optionally 4 watts). Requires 12-15v provided by a variety of optional battery combinations that could be slid onto the bottom of the RT unit. As issued, the radio has a combination battery box/charger that uses a nicad battery similar to that of a Motorola HT-200. Size 5 1/2"H x 3 1/4"W x 1 3/4"T( less battery box), 10 1/2"tall (with battery). Accessories include telescoping 1/4 wave antenna, CY-6502 leather carry case. The PRC-91A as with other equipment of this type & vintage, were to be replaced by the PRC-94V1. Original US Navy cost $1060.00. NSN 5820-922-2858, circa 1968. Ref.#23,#28
PRC-91/RT-918; Hand held VHF FM transceiver. Adoption of the commercial Motorola model HT-200 (Z23DEN1100A) Handie Talkie. Ops 132-150mc on one (optionally two) xtal control channels. RF power output is rated at 1.4 watts. Requires 14vdc as supplied by a special internal dry or nicad battery. Accessories include ZAD6060A, ZNK6009A, ZLN6116A, ZSN6002A. To be replaced by the PRC-94V1, the original US Navy cost was $2840.00. NSN5820-00-889-7556. Circa 1965. Ref.#28

Handheld UHF AM transceiver. Intended for use by Air-Sea Rescue units in the location & extraction of downed aircrew members. It is believed that this radio is a modification of the ACR RT-10 to provide two channel operation on 243 & ?mc, AM with an output power of 200mw

PRC-94V; Handheld VHF,FM transceiver. Adoption of the commercial Comco model series 802( Repco 10-8). It has very similar cosmetics & electronics to the PRC-91A,with the added provision for an external speaker/mic. Ops 150-174mc, xtal control, with an optional capacity of up to 5 channels. RF power output is 2.2 watts (standard), 4 watts(optional). Coast Guard Sets are 2.2 watt with provisions for low power operation (1 watt). Requires 12-15v normally supplied by a detachable nicad battery, an "AA" battery box can also be used. Accessories include telescoping 1/4 wave or 6" rubber antennas, speaker-mic, leather carry case, desktop or vehicular chargers. Circa 1975-1985. Ref.#11, #23, #28
PRC-94V1; The commercial equivalents for this PRC-94 variant are COMCO 810-156-01, & RCA 8TNIH11R. Ops 132-150.8mc, with one Xtal control channel, & an output power of 2.2 watts. It was factory supplied with rechargeable nicad batteries. For other possible variants see PRC-94. Original US Navy & Marine Corps cost $1210.00.NSN 5820-01-012-2770. Ref.#28,#30
PRC-94V2; The commercial equivalent for this PRC-94 variant is the RCA 8TN2H44SMF or 8TN2H44SMZ. Ops 150.8-162mc, with four xtal control channels, & an output power of 2.2 watts. For other possible parameters see PRC-94. Original US Navy & Marine Corps cost $935-$1240.00. NSN 5820-00-110-5722. Ref.#28,#30
PRC-94V3; The commercial equivalents for this PRC-94 variant are COMCO 810-156-01, & RCA 8TN1H44S. Ops 132-150.6mc, with four xtal control channels, & an output power of 2.2 watts. For other possible parameters see PRC-94. Original US Navy & Dept of Defense cost $1790.00. NSN 5820-01-012-2771.
Hand held UHF/AM transceiver. Designed for use by downed aircrew as a possible replacement for the PRC-90. Features two-channel operation on 243 and 282.8mc, from a lithium battery supplying 18 hours of battery life. Said to be the first use of this type battery. Ref. Electronic Design, August 2, 1966. Electronics, November, 1970, the Vietnam Report Part II.
Shipboard or lifeboat emergency AM, Beacon transceiver. Designed for use by distressed Naval personnel to effect their rescue. Ops on 121.5 & 243mc, AM voice/MCW/Beacon, with an RF power output of 200mw, from internal lithium batteries(2ea 2.9v). Size 13.5 x 10 x 4", 7lbs 8oz(case), 6x4x2",3lbs 8oz (transceiver), 7.75"(antenna). TS-3527 dual channel accessory test set checks transmit, receive, & battery condition.
Handheld VHF,FM transceiver. Adoption of the commercial Motorola model H21DCN-1100ASPO2 (SPS1B11648). Ops 30-42mc, 1 channel, with an output power of 1.4 watts from 14vdc internal battery. NSN 5820-00-179-8433. Original US Navy cost $819.90
Backpack VHF FM transceiver. Designed as a replacement for the PRC-77. Features digital synthesis with four place bush-button tuning, 25kc channel spacing, & common accessories with the PRC-25 & 77, but with smaller size & weight. Ops 30-80mc, with a possible 2000 channels. Rated output power is 2 watts. DC power is derived from 12ea "D" cell batteries or rechargeable nicad pack. Manufactured by Liberty Electronics NY.
Hand held VHF FM transceiver. Adaptation of the commercial Motorola HT-220 (H23FFN1102ASP2) for general-purpose communications. It appears the PRC-101 was supplied with 2 watts output, one channel, & carrier squelch. Original US Navy cost $2150.00, NSN 5820-00-409-4213.
Belt worn or handheld UHF AM transceiver. Designed for para-rescue, medical airman, & rescue aircraft. Ops 243 & 282.5mc (others optional), on one of two xtal control channels, with an RF power output of 100mw. Requires 14vdc/110ma supplied by BA-1568 mercury battery. Size 6 x 3.1 x 1.4",25oz (RT unit), 24" (antenna). Introduced with US Air Force circa 1976. Original cost $642.00, NSN 5820-01-273-1989.
AN/PRC-104 RT-1209/URC
Backpack or vehicular, HF SSB/CW transceiver. Conceived as a replacement for the PRC-74, & in part the PRC-47, approx 1976. Ops 2-30mc in 100cps steps, for a possible 280,000 frequencies. RF power output is rated at 20 watts USB/LSB. Requires 12.5v derived from internal (7ah batteries) or external source. Size 2 5/8"h x 12"w x 10 1/5"d, 19.8lbs (with battery box, handset & whip antenna). Known accessories include AS-2259 (transportable antenna)(AT-271 can be used for backpack portable operation), AT-129 whip spring base, AM-6874 amplifier/antenna coupler, CY-8291 transit case, H-250 or H-189 handset, CY-7541 battery box, KY-872 CW Key, KG-65 secure device AM-7152 audio amplifier/24v power supply (part of GRC-213), AM-6879/URC audio/RF amplifier/power supply/FSK converter (MRC-138 or GRC-193), MT-2154 & MT-623 (part of GRC-213). NSN 5920-01-027-9071.
Manpack adaptation of the PRC-104. Provides for two-man pack-carry of PRC-104 with the addition of a 100 watt amplifier.
Handheld VHF/UHF AM/Beacon transceiver. Designed as a survival radio for downed aircrew, it is a two band PRC-90. It provides voice & beacon operation on either civil or military guard channels. Ops 121.5 or 243mc, with one of two xtal control channel/bands, with an RF output of 100mw (600mw ?). Requires 14v/100ma (trans), 50ma (rec), supplied by mercury battery. Size 6 x 3.1 x 1.4", 24oz (radio with battery), 23.5"(antenna). Original cost $3180.93, NSN 5820-01-156-5709.
Backpack/portable HF,AM/USB transceiver. Built by Sunair (commercial model number PRC 20/6), & known to have been used at least by the US Coast Guard circa 1971. Ops 2-12mc on any of six xtal control channels. RF output is rated at 25 watts USB (CW & LSB supplied as an option, USB & AM are standard). Requires 12v/2amps (trans), 200ma(rec with signal), supplied by internal 7ah nicad, or 8ah lead acid rechargeable batteries. Size 11.5"h x 13"w x 4.4"d, 16lbs (radio), 4.7"h x 4.4"d x 13"w, 4.2lbs( battery box less battery). Accessories include collapsible whip antenna (AT-271 can be used), side mounted spring loaded whip antenna base, H-189 or equivalent handset, nylon carry case, metal pack frame, battery charger 110/220vac, mobile mount rack, remote manually switched antenna coupler, battery box. Original cost $905.47, NSN 5820-00-007-4122.
Handheld VHF/UHF AM/Beacon transceiver. Adapted as a replacement for the PRC-90, it provides downed aircrew & rescue personnel with several advantages over that model. Including both VHF & UHF operation, higher output power, smaller size, & synthesized multi channel UHF operation. Ops 121.5mc & up to 4 channels in the 225-299.975mc range (2999 channels spaced 25kc apart). RF power output is rated 1 watt (UHF), & 100mw( VHF). Size 152mm H x 76mm W x 38mm D, 0.8kg (with battery). Original cost $1520-$1984, NSN 5820-01-279-5450.
PRC-112A; Unknown difference. NSN 5820-01-280-2117, original US Army & Navy cost $2060.00. Ref.#28
PRC-112B; Unknown difference. NSN 5820-02-41708752, original US Army cost $6000.00. Ref.#28


The proceeding is an updated version of an article that originally appeared in the "Military Collector Group Post"; an international email magazine dedicated to the preservation of history and the equipment that made it. Unlimited circulation of this material is authorized as long as the proper credit to the original author(s) and publisher (or the group) is included. For more information concerning this group or membership, contact Dennis Starks (KBØSFP)