Vero VR-N7500 Dual Band FM App Controlled Radio Review
As you may or may not know I have been a huge fan of the more modern types of radio that have been available over the recent years, I have really enjoyed learning and using the digital modes and have done quite a few YouTube videos showing everything from reviews to tutorials. My father-in-law is also a radio amateur and we really enjoy chatting about the latest in radio tech, a couple of weeks ago he told me about the Vero VR-N7500 app controlled radio and he told me that it was the very first radio to be completely controlled via a mobile phone app, I took a look for myself and was super excited to get my hands on one to try it out for myself.
After around 10 days the radio came directly from china, the postman handed me the package and I went to grab my camera and filmed my first impressions and un-boxing video straight away as I wanted it to be a surprise for both me and my subscribers. My first impressions were very good, the build quality was absolutely fantastic and reminded me of more expensive radios like Yaesu or Icom they have truly done a fantastic job and it immediately got my attention straight out of the box.
As you will notice from looking at the pictures of this radio, there is no screen or buttons on the radio apart from the power button, this radio is completely controlled via either an Android or IOS application on your mobile phone or tablet. The radio uses Bluetooth Technology to connect your phone or tablet to the radio, This can be especially good for use within your car for example as you can put the radio in the Boot/Trunk of the car and as its completely controlled via an app there is no need to physically touch the radio itself. You may be asking what about the Microphone? Well this can either be extended with a RJ45 to RJ45 cable purchased from your ham radio outlet or more interestingly you can just use your phone! Yes that’s right the audio can come out of your phone speakers and use your phones microphone to talk back, pretty amazing right!?
What’s in the box?
In the box you will receive..
The main radio unit
the speaker microphone
the power cable
the quick start guide/manual
the mounting bracket
Bluetooth PTT button (optional)
Let’s have a look around the main unit..
Like I said earlier the radio is very well built, has a really nice weight to it and is completely made of die cast metal. There is a really nice heat sink on the bottom of the radio and a nice cooling fan on the back of the radio also with a heat sink. On the back we also have a external speaker jack and the SO239 antenna connector, on the top we have the VGC logo. The front of the radio has a type of high quality plastic cover with the VGC logo on the left and three LEDs (PWR, TX, RX) then we have the RJ45 microphone port then finally the power on/off button.
Let’s have a look at the Microphone..
The speaker microphone supplied with the radio seems really rugged and well put together, it has a large PTT switch on the left side that is really nice to press and is made out of plastic, the other side to the microphone has an indentation that allows your thumb to rest nicely when holding it. The front of the mic has four buttons the far left button is the memory or volume button switch, then we have an OK button and an up and down button to change channels without having to look at your phone app, this is ok as long as you know what channel contains the frequency you require as the voice that comes from the speaker on the microphone just lets you know the channel number selected.
What is the app like?
From what I can tell the app is not made by VERO, I could be wrong but it looks like it’s more of a generic phone app that can be used on several other devices, the quick start guide directs you to the VERO website where you can download the app directly or you can use the play store, from what I understand the IOS version is not as developed as the android version at this time but I believe they are working on improving this. The app allows you to control all the features of the radio and you can even update the firmware using it too! This radio has APRS and you can see the map along with the messages coming through just like you can on the APRS website, really nice to see. I did encounter an issue with the APRS, you can receive the tones absolutely fine but when it comes to transmitting the beacons the tone that is transmitted from the radio is not received by other radios, it does sound different to what APRS sounds like, hopefully they are working on a firmware update to fix it or it could just be an isolated issue with my unit.
I have been using the radio for about two weeks now and I have really enjoyed using it, its super well put together and is really innovative! Some of the downsides of this radio is there is no display, personally I would have preferred it to be designed like any other radio, for example have a display with buttons and switches but being app controlled as an added feature instead of it being the only option. Some people have reached out to me showing their concerns, if for example the app was no longer available, this would render the radio useless, hopefully this doesn’t ever happen. Another thing is there’s no signal meter on the app so you have no idea what strength the incoming signals are to you, not a deal breaker but something to note. Overall I am really happy with this radio, I love the fact that it would work extremely well in a car with your Bluetooth car audio using the optional PTT button on the steering wheel, I also used my Samsung Bluetooth ear buds with the radio and they worked perfectly also. This would be the perfect radio for your vehicle as you can install the main unit in the boot/trunk and never have to worry about it, it would be out of view and you phone would become the removable head unit, amazing idea!
If you are looking to purchase one of these radio then please check the link below, thanks very much for reading and I hope you found it useful. 🙂
Here is my UN-boxing video on the radio
Here is my main review video