Packetize Me No Packet Left Behind

Entering the World of DMR: Prerequisites

I recently became interested in joining a Net but was unable to do so as it takes place over DMR. Entering the World of DMR is a collection of notes that I took while trying to get on the air and join that net.

This first post will cover the basic prerequisites needed to get on the air with DMR. Subsequent posts will cover configuring the equipment and making a contact.



There are many radios available which support DMR. On a recommendation, I picked up an AnyTone AT-D878UV.


Know that hotspots are nice but not necessary. If you only intend to use DMR locally, not connecting to one of the networks, or have sufficient repeater coverage, you can skip getting a hotspot.

Hotspots connect to DMR networks over the internet and act as an RF gateway to those networks: if you have an internet connection, you can join any talkgroup you want.

I picked up a DVMEGA Hotspot, but the openSPOT hotspots seem fairly popular too. If you’re feeling adventurous, consider building your own MMDVM hotspot.

DMR ID Registration

Amateur radio callsigns aren’t sufficient for DMR operation, as DMR utilizes numeric IDs for each radio1 on a network. I will only be covering getting on to the Brandmeister network, but multiple DMR networks have now standardized on for DMR ID registration for the Americas, Asia and Oceania. Amateurs in Europe and Africa should register a DMR ID with


Once you have been assigned a DMR ID, you will need to register with any networks you wish to join. There are multiple networks, but I’ve only joined Brandmeister. DMR-MARC seems to be another popular network.


Visit the BrandMeister registration page and provide the requested information; you will need to already have a DMR ID to do so.

  1. A unique DMR ID must be in use for each radio actively taking part in a given QSO. It’s OK to have one DMR ID in use by all of your radios as long as you only use one at a time. [return]